Hey, it’s the first Tuesday of the month and that means it’s time for a brand new Love Train, that special installment of The Devin’s Advocate where I only drip positivity and sweetness. The idea here is that I am bringing a respite from the bile and hate that apparently clouds my every post (seriously, I think if you guys met me you’d get where the comedy in hate is) and to spread some sunshine on things that could use smiles.
This Love Train comes at an odd time for me, since I have just moved to Los Angeles and have not really gotten past the ‘strong dislike/intense annoyance’ phase with my new hometown. Thankfully I have had sort of an amazing week, so there’s a whole bunch of new stuff for me to drench with my love.
What I’m loving in person: My readers. As you may know (since I yapped about it enough), I did a panel at San Diego Comic Con this year, and the response has been tremendous. Not only did many wonderful and loyal readers come up after the panel and say incredibly nice things to me, but I have also met a couple of people after the panel who have been not only kind, but also an amazing example of the CHUD readership. You’re not all fat sweaty guys covered in Cheeto dust! Actually, last night I was walking home across Hollywood Boulevard and a girl stopped me. ‘Were you at Comic Con?’ she asked. I told her I was, and she said she had seen my panel – she even said some of my jokes back to me. It turns out that this girl, who lives near me, also works at the Playboy Mansion. A Bunny! Truly, CHUD has entered a new Golden Age.
The picture here is real live Chewer Adam Roth who randomly recognized me the other night at a Denny’s on Sunset Boulevard. Weird, but cool. By the way, I am really bad at returning emails – any emails – so my apologies if you’ve written something nice and I didn’t write back. I totally meant to.
What I’m loving in comics: Scalped. This Vertigo series recently hit trade paperback, and I picked it up on a whim. That was a good move, because this is an incredible fucking comic book. Set on a modern day Indian reservation on the eve of the opening of new casino, Scalped is a hard boiled crime story with a very fascinating backdrop. Dashiell Bad Horse left the rez when he was 13, and now he’s back as a grown up tough guy, cracking the heads of Chief Red Crow, the gangster scumbag who runs things and is behind the controversial casino. Red Crow likes Dashiell’s style and recruits him to be the ultra-violent new lawman on the rez; meanwhile Dashiell discovers the girl he loved when he was 13 has grown up to be a drunken whore and that his mother is one of the lead protesters against the casino. And if all of that isn’t complicated enough for him, he’s actually back on the rez working undercover – as himself – for the FBI. Scalped is tough and gritty and filled with fascinating, nuanced characters. Writer Jason Aaron has created a cast and a milieu that are unique and compelling. Artist RM Guera’s work, while a little monochromatic at times, is visceral and has a clean storytelling style that seems to have fallen out of favor with artists on adult-oriented books. Scalped would make an incredible HBO series, and if I was a Hollywood guy I would option the living shit out of this (if it hasn’t already been optioned).
What I’m loving in my apartment complex: My pool. I have never lived anywhere with a pool before and it’s kind of exciting… even if I’ve only been in it once. See, my complex is structured like Melrose Place, which means that every apartment overlooks the pool. I don’t go in to swim so much as to splash around, and I have this whole paranoid thing about people watching me and thinking, ‘A new retarded person moved into the complex?’ Also, my complex is filled with Armenians, who are among the least friendly folks I have yet to encounter – they have that Eastern European thing where they never, ever seem to smile. So between my general paranoia and the chilling demeanor of my neighbors, I did not have the balls to try to the pool alone. Thankfully, some friends came over last week and we splashed around for a couple of hours. It’s great having that option just steps from your front door… even if you’re too big a pussy to use it.
What I’m loving on TV: ME! Yeah, I’m an ego maniac. In the last two weeks I’ve done two appearances on G4’s Attack of the Show, and they seem to like me, so I may well be doing more. The first one was live from the floor of Comic Con where I completely shredded a poor writer from Entertainment Weekly on the subject of whether or not JJ Abrams is the right guy to reboot Star Trek (he ain’t, but we’ll just have to hope for the best). Then on Friday I was on with two other guys chiming in via satellite. The live Comic Con thing was chill – I was on a stage, surrounded by people in costume who wanted to get on TV. The in studio appearance was way weirder, because I was sitting alone in a corner of the studio with the camera right in my face and an ear piece piping in the sound. I couldn’t see the other two guys, and I didn’t even know when I was on camera or not. Still, I had a blast and the people at G4 are incredibly nice. I’m still a newbie when it comes to TV, but I think I’m somewhat improving – if you watch my appearances on Filter from last year I’m twitching like Michael J Fox on a vibrating bed; this last week I was much more still. How soon until they give me my own show? I’ll work cheap.
Here’s the video of my appearance on Friday:
What I’m loving in LA: The La Brea Tar Pits. Turns out the La Brea Tar Pits are right across the street from the G4 studio. I got to the studio early and had time to kill so I hit the Pits. While I couldn’t go inside the museum to see all the fossils (it was closed at that time), I did get to see the actual bubbling, oozing tar pit, including a big wooly mammoth statue in the throes of drowning. Most of us nerds grew up loving dinosaurs, so the tar pits are a big part of my personal mythology. While there I waited to see if the Runaways’ Leap Frog would make an appearance (their secret base is below the pit) but no such luck.