Just a quick note to say I am alive and don’t plan on ending my active streak writing about comics and drag and everything here on CK. I needed to devote my time and my brain to some other topics this week, but I’ll be catching up with you all shortly 😉
I’m back with another X-Guide Update! This guide was NOT a guide I expected to have to update this year, and certainly not for two different reasons. First, Marvel is relaunching this title (with its original creative team!) into a new series later this year that picks up directly from its end in 2004. Second, certainly related to that, Marvel is publishing the first of two omnibuses that will cover the entire run! Of course, I’m talking about my Guide to X-Treme X-Men!
This guide covers all three volumes of X-Treme X-Men – the 2001 Claremont/Larroca team of fan-favorites that ran alongside Grant Morrison’s New X-Men, Greg Pak’s 2012 Exiles-style revival starring Dazzler, and the newly-announced Claremont/Larroca flashback series.
You can find the trade reading order for all of that, where three different supporting mini-series (Savage Land, X-Pose, & Mekanix) fit into the original run, where characters can be found next, plus links to buy physical and digital collections and read right now on Marvel Unlimited!
Mabuhay! Welcome to my review and power rankings of the fifth episode of Drag Race Philippines Season 1 – Miss Shutacca, a realistic beauty pageant with the queens dancing and improv-ing stereotypical beauty queen roles.
For me, this episode is terrific example of what Drag Race can be. It had everything: a cruel choreographer, technical difficulties that crossed over from being annoying to be just as camp as the challenge, a strong runway, and a terrific set of judge’s critiques.
I found “Miss Shutacca” to be a fascinating challenge because it asked a cast full of reality show contestants to fake being beauty pageant contestants in a very real pageant. When Race Race had done this in the past, the pageant itself was deliberately satirical – as on Canada’s Drag Race Season 1.
Here, the pageant was played incredibly straight, save for some of the hosts’ banter. It was also very long – one of the longest sequences of improve we’ve ever seen on Drag Race, with four distinct segments plus choreography. That meant at points the queens couldn’t help but let their inner competitors shine through their characters – especially in the Q&A portion.
It was fascinating to see how some queens broke character in that moment, while others used it to dive more deeply into it. Similarly, I was entranced by how seriously real life Miss Universe 2015 Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach took this fake pageant full of drag queens. She was resplendently beautiful and a natural as a judge; I wouldn’t be surprised to see her return to the show. Meanwhile, KaladKaren got to show off her absurd side as a co-host of the pageant.
The competition to stay entrenched in the Top 3 is really heating up as we approach the halfway mark of the season. Of the remaining seven queens, five of them feel entirely possible as finalists. That resulted in a shake-up at the top of the ranking this week compared to last week’s ranking.
If you want to watch Drag Race Philippines outside of the Philippines and Canada you can sign up for WowPresentsPlus to watch the many worldwide Drag Race franchises for $4.99 a month or $50 a year. (Note that if you’re in the home country of a franchise you will need to use a VPN to “visit” another country to see that content.)
Readers, start your engines! And, may the best Filipino drag queen win! [Read more…] about Drag Race Philippines Season 1 Episode 5 – Miss Shutacca, Review & Power Ranking
When I originally launched my many X-Men guides in 2010, my policy was that no title that only had a single volume could merit its own guide. After all, guides were meant to make things simpler, not harder to follow! However, this particular title has now graduated from the grips of the Guide to X-Force thanks to it is new 2022 incarnation, The X-Cellent. Of course, I am talking about the groundbreaking run by Peter Milligan, Mike Allred, & Laura Allred now covered in its entirety by my Guide to X-Statix & The X-Cellent!
Even if you know X-actly how to collect X-Statix already, check out the guide for my intro essay about the context of the X-Men line at the time, and how X-Statix arrived at the birth of reality television as we now know it. Or, watch and listen as I wax poetic about the X-Statix Omnibus, diversity, inclusion, and acceptance on Crushing Comics on YouTube.
This week I have another update to one of the original Crushing Comics launch guides that I created back in August of 2010. Despite updating it many times over the years, I decided to tear this one down and re-built it from scratch to make it easier than ever to find the physical and digital collections you want – plus, I added over a dozen new collected editions! Welcome to my all-new, all-different Guide to X-Force.
My last update of the Guide to X-Force was before the first collections from Dawn of X were announced, so clearly I had a lot of updating to do! That not only included collections of Benjamin Percy’s 2019 Age of Krakoa series, but also X-Men Milestones reprints of several major crossovers and several new X-Force Epic Collections announced over the past few years.
That’s not the only big addition to this guide. I’ve added all of the features of the newest guides on the site, including a “Where to Start” section, a summary of both oversized hardcovers and paperback Epics & Complete Collections, digital purchase links, and links to read on Marvel Unlimited!
Like I said: rebuilt from scratch. Even though the guide includes a lot more information, it’s also significantly simpler than it ever has been before.
That rebuild included one subtraction, but it was for a good reason! Since X-Statix made a comeback this year into their all-new The X-Cellent series by original creators Peter Milligan and Mike & Laura Allred, I decided it was time for X-Statix to graduate to it’s own guide! X-Statix is one of my favorite X-runs of all time, but they’ve never really had anything to do with X-Force other than squatting in their title for 14 issues.
I’ll be back tomorrow to share that new X-Statix spinoff guide once I’ve polished it up a bit. For now, enjoy this renewed Guide to X-Force – and, let me know in the comments which X-Force incarnation is your favorite version of the team.