Culture

Wed
24
Jun

Fear Leads to Codes for Survival in Comics Industry

CCA Pledge overlay image

It was a year of turmoil for comics professionals. Livelihoods were on the lines as those who worked in the industry began to see their peers picked off right and left, as the field of comics was being laid waste by the scythe of a force that had found it ripe for harvest. There were rules, arbitrary and unwritten, that had been broken, and the piper had come with the invoice, stamped "Past Due." In a rush of adrenalin-fueled panic, those still standing cobbled together a promissory note, a token to the aggrieved that they would change their behavior, codified for the world to see.

If you think this is a summary of the events of 1954 that led to the Comics Code Authority, it would be understandable. But it's 2020, and the professionals in comics are circling the wagons to protect themselves from threats internal, not external.

Thu
18
Jun

Submission Possible a Road Trip of American Kink

Submission Possible on Revry

Some television shows take the viewer on cross-country trips to find the best hidden restaurants. Others take you on house-hunting journeys, or tag along with CEOs who get an incognito look inside their own companies from a new perspective.

Madison Young's trek across America is to discover, illuminate, and partake of the sexual kinks practiced in different regions. And if you think that this is all something that stops with leather and handcuffs, then you've only read the opening sentence of the opening paragraph of the encyclopedia set of sexual paraphilia.

Fri
29
May

False Statements, Lies Pressure Alterna Into Releasing Police Reports on 2019 Swatting

Tweeted Accusations

In February of 2019, Alterna Comics publisher Peter Simeti was on a live stream broadcast from his apartment, when a knock at the door drew him away from his microphone. The stream was left running, and viewers could clearly hear the police enter the apartment and question Simeti, in response to a 911 call about a violent domestic disturbance.

The violence did not happen. The call was faked -- what is termed a "SWATting" in which the perpetrator calls the police pretending to be in distress or emotional turmoil, specifically the kind that would urge police to enter with weapons drawn. The obvious intent is that the person targeted would thus be harmed by the police.

Fri
01
May

Our May Bombshell is the Cat's Meow! Meet Noé Nicky!

May 2020 Bombshell of the Month Noe Nicky

Every month the staff at Critical Blast combs the cosplay community for up-and-coming cosplayers who deserve to have a broader audience for their work, taking into account not only costuming skills and spirit, but also how they use that ability in service to others. Through this, we've not only met some talented cosplayers, but also some fine human beings.

Our May 2020 Bombshell of the Month demonstrates multiple facets to her cosplay -- from getting a little catty to just horsing around! The amount of fun she brings to every character she inhabits is evident in her cosplay, both in pictures and in the charities she supports with her talents.

Ladies and gentlemen, we could not be happier to kick off thos month by introducing to you our...

 

Wed
01
Apr

Lord of Cosplay: Meet our April Bombshell of the Month, Lord Alexandre

April 2020 Bombshell of the Month Cosplayer Lord Alexandre

Every month the staff at Critical Blast combs the cosplay community for up-and-coming cosplayers who deserve to have a broader audience for their work, taking into account not only costuming skills and spirit, but also how they use that ability in service to others. Through this, we've not only met some talented cosplayers, but also some fine human beings.

We've been telling readers all year long that there is a cosplay revolution taking place in the southern hemisphere, with some breakout talent that is truly eye-popping. More than that, the camaraderie that has come from our Brazilian friends has been nothing short of inspiring. That is certainly the case with this month's featured cosplayer, who brings his optimism and acting skills to the convention floors and public events, breathing life into some of the most recognizable -- and most underserved -- characters of comics and pop culture.

Thu
12
Mar

2019 Critical Blast Bombshell of the Year: Natile Cosplay

Natile Cosplay 2019 Bombshell of the Year

Critical Blast wraps up its spate of announcements for the Best of 2019 awards with the revelation of 2019's Critical Blast Bombshell of the Year, as decided by our readers.

Every month, Critical Blast evaluates the cosplay skills of various participants in the hobby, looking for those who stand out not just in their costuming skills but also in how they apply that talent. And every year those twelve cosplayers are added to our annual ballot to determine who will take the next step from Bombshell of the Month to Bombshell of the Year.

Voting in this category was fairly even, with the topmost vote-getters separated only by a percentage point each.

Fri
06
Mar

Blood in the Water: Fowler Double-Scalps Murphy, TenNapel

Blood in the Water Fowler Murphy TenNapel

It's been a while since indie comics pro Tess Fowler has claimed another career in the comics industry. That dry spell may be over now, depending on how events shape up after today's astonishing announcement from DC Comics writer/artist Sean Gordon Murphy, the driving force behind the best-selling BATMAN: WHITE KNIGHT franchise.

In fact, reception to the WHITE KNIGHT line has been so encouraging to DC that they gave him the reigns to his own little universe -- the Murphyverse -- with power to hire talent for issues that would appear between extended runs.

Sat
29
Feb

Our March Bombshell of the Month has it Made in the Shade!

Bombshell 202003 Shady Haze

Every month the staff at Critical Blast combs the cosplay community for up-and-coming cosplayers who deserve to have a broader audience for their work, taking into account not only costuming skills and spirit, but also how they use that ability in service to others. Through this, we've not only met some talented cosplayers, but also some fine human beings.

Our newest cosplayer caught our attention with her unique ability to portray characters of different genders, pulling off male and female characters with equal alacrity and skill. We had to share with our readers her talents at both costuming and modeling our favorite heroes, and we believe you will be as impressed as we are.

And so, dear readers, we at Critical Blast are pleased and proud to present to you, our...

 

Fri
31
Jan

Harbinger of Cosplay: Meet February Bombshell, Jade Martinez

Bombshell Jade Martinez

Every month the staff at Critical Blast combs the cosplay community for up-and-coming cosplayers who deserve to have a broader audience for their work, taking into account not only costuming skills and spirit, but also how they use that ability in service to others. Through this, we've not only met some talented cosplayers, but also some fine human beings.

Cosplay must really be taking off in the southern hemisphere, because for the second month in a row now, our Bombshell of the Month comes to us from Argentina, and she's bringing a special Valentine's Day greeting to our readers through her splendid cosplay!

Dear readers, please open your hearts and prepare to fall in love with our new...

 

Mon
20
Jan

Fairytale Themed Gifts for Valentine's Day

Fairytale Valentine

“If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales.”

So said Albert Einstein. Yet fairy tales are as much for adults, with written tales originally targeted to an adult audience to teach all of us how to navigate life with strength and resilience. Many of these tales feature love and romance, which makes them a perfect theme for a Valentine’s Day gift. Here are some other ideas, and whilst some gift experiences are not on Valentine’s Day, it is still a chance for you to spread the love throughout the year.

Thu
02
Jan

Voting Open for Best of 2019 Awards

Nominations for Best of 2019

Holy cow, is it 2020 already? 2019 seems to have gone by in a blur, with so much happening in the world of movies, television, and comics. It's hard to believe we've reached the point where we now have the unenviable task of deciding which was the best in every category to recognize the producers of entertainment for their efforts.

So below you will find the voting form, featuring our nominations for the best film, film actor, television series (which includes streaming until we come up with a word to replace television), series actor, comic book storyline, comics writer, comics artist, and -- last but certainly not least -- the selection of our Critical Blast Bombshell of the Year from the list of 2019's Bombshell of the Month candidates.

Sun
01
Dec

Seasons Greetings from December Bombshell, Mai I Cosplay

Bombshell 2019 12 - Maiicosplay

Every month the staff at Critical Blast combs the cosplay community for up and coming cosplayers who deserve to have a broader audience for their work, taking into account not only costuming skills and spirit, but also how they use that ability in service to others. Through this, we've not only met some talented cosplayers, but also some fine human beings.

As 2019 draws to a close, we thought we'd send the year out with a frosty bang of some explosive cosplay.  Ladies and gentlement, it is our great pleasure to introduce you to our...

 

Critical Blast Bombshell, December 2019

Maiicosplay


Allura (CRITICAL ROLE)

What is your interest in cosplay?

Wed
27
Nov

Gift Guide for Geeks, Gamers, and Gallifreyans

Geek Christmas Guide

So the turkey is thawing (in the fridge, of course; you don't want to spend the holidays with salmonella), the family is coming together, and the Christmas cards are all written out and ready to be mailed. And it's now that you realize... you have to start Christmas shopping. Because you wait for the sales to start, right? You want the best deals.

Well the deals are easy to find. The question is, what do you get all those geeks and gamers, those Jedis and Timelords, those superheroes and shippers? That's were we come in, with this helpful list of things that will surely stuff the stockings and jingle the bells of all your fellow fanboys and geek girls. So Merry Christmas, Happy Hannukah, and May the Force be With You.

Wed
20
Nov

Don’t Be a Cyberattack Victim This Holiday Season

Holiday Cybersecurity

By Alain Ghiai

CEO of GlobeX Data Ltd.

 

Not a day seems to go by without reading about the latest cyberattack.  With the holiday season upon us, the stakes grow higher as digital criminals exploit the increase of e-commerce activity from consumers.

Fri
01
Nov

A Cornucopia of Cosplay: Meet November Bombshell, Lady Ashe XII

Bombshell November 2019 Lady Ashe XII

Every month the staff at Critical Blast combs the cosplay community for up and coming cosplayers who deserve to have a broader audience for their work, taking into account not only costuming skills and spirit, but also how they use that ability in service to others. Through this, we've not only met some talented cosplayers, but also some fine human beings.

Just because Halloween has become a pile of empty chocolate bar wrappers on the kitchen table doesn't mean that dress-up time is over. As we move into a season of gratitude for all good things, we are thankful for all the Bombshells we have encountered this year, and none less than this month's versatile costumer  Ladies and gentlement, it is our distinct privilege to now present to you our...

 

Tue
01
Oct

No Tricks, All Treats: Meet our October 2019 Bombshell, NatileCosplay!

October 2019 Bombshell

 

Every month the staff at Critical Blast combs the cosplay community for up and coming cosplayers who deserve to have a broader audience for their work, taking into account not only costuming skills and spirit, but also how they use that ability in service to others. Through this, we've not only met some talented cosplayers, but also some fine human beings.

This month our quest carries us across the pond, to meet a cosplayer who's super -- and a little bit crazy! Displaying not only skills and talent, but also an outstanding attitude, our Bombshell of the Month has banded together with other cosplayers to be a part of a fun-filled charity group. Intrigued? Then read on, as we proudly present to you our...

 

Mon
23
Sep

The Wait vs The Worth -- CYBERFROG: BLOODHONEY

Cyberfrog: Bloodhoney

In all of comics history, there has perhaps not been a comic so divisive, so defended, and so derided as Ethan Van Sciver's CYBERFROG: BLOODHONEY. And all that before the book was even printed. Seen as one of the hallmark titles of the amorphous ComicsGate movement, the title and creator have taken heat over timeliness and finances. The book raised nearly a million dollars in pre-sales through multiple Indiegogo crowdfunding efforts, and arrived just shy of being one year late of its estimated release date.

This week, the book began arriving in the hands of those who had backed it, and almost immediately new rumors began to pop up: poor paper quality, water damage, digest-sized. None of that is true. CYBERFROG: BLOODHONEY is of standard dimensions, and over 80 pages. The cover is very sturdy, the paper is of better stock than your average floppy, and the ink is smear-resistant.

Tue
17
Sep

The First 60 Inspiring Years: Barbie Forever

Barbie Forever 60 Years

At first blush, Robin Gerber's BARBIE FOREVER: HER INSPIRATATION, HISTORY, AND LEGACY might appear to be another beautifully designed coffee table book, packaged to appeal to fans of the Mattel maven whose fashions and careers have delighted and motivated children for decades -- six of them, to be precise! My expectation was the cursory introduction, maybe four or five pages of text delivering a succinct history of the doll and her creator, and then a veritable book full of photographs of Barbie through the years.

Mon
09
Sep

Gamergate, Too: Zoe Quinn's Statements Undermined by...Zoe Quinn

Zoe Quinn vs Zoe Quinn

Zoe Quinn is no stranger to controversy. One might even argue her entire career has been built on the house-of-cards foundation of accusations of sexism and abuse, setting her up as a heroic overcomer in the male-dominated industries of video games and comic books.

But Internet controversy turned to real life consequences barely two weeks ago when Quinn took to Twitter to make public accusations against former fellow game designer, Alec Holowka, claiming sexual abuse and false imprisonment. The immediate fallout for Holowka -- the loss of his career and the shattered public perception -- drove a man who already suffered from emotional troubles to take his own life.

#MeToo had been successfully weaponized--and the weapon was deadly.

Mon
02
Sep

Murder by Media? How Cyberbullying Led to Game Designer's Suicide

Just short of two years ago, Zoe Quinn was being celebrated as having overcome online harassment to go on and become a game designer on a hotly aniticipated indy game project with Chuck Tingle. (Editor's Note: The crowdfunded game has yet to be delivered and is currently over two years late in fulfillment.) She was the model of the underdog who wouldn't give in to online trolls.

Six days ago, Quinn recalled sexual abuse details from an old relationship with fellow game designer, Alec Holowka. Instead of taking these details to the police for investigation, Quinn chose to air the accusations through her Twitter account, @UnburntWitch.

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