Friday, August 22, 2014

Comic Reviews 8/22/14

Here In Bongo Congo

     Good King Leonardo has decreed that we still have plenty of summer left, so let's check-out four new comic book issues and see if these titles stack-up to be included in the August edition of our summertime reading list:
Magnus Robot Fighter #0
Publisher: Dynamite Entertainment
Fred Van Lente: Writer
Roberto Castro: Art
Luigi Anderson & Mauricio Wallace: Colors

     Dynamite Entertainment has so far published five issues in its revival of the famed Silver Age Magnus Robot Fighter comic book.  I decided to review issue #0, the cover of which appeared to feature a female robot fighter in place of the traditional male Magnus.  An inside-the-front-cover narrative explains that she's "the very awesome human, Leeja Clane," who polices the future city of North Am as a peacekeeper with help from robots. The series is written by Fred Van Lente with art by Roberto Castro and colors by the team of Luigi Anderson and Mauricio Wallace.

     The inside front cover narrative also explains that the events of issue #0 occur in between the plotline of issues #2 and #3.  In this sidebar plot, we're introduced to the main character, a robot named Gunbot-856. When he's dismantled in a robot fighter battle, we learn that he, along with the other North Am robots, are part of a collective consciousness that restores each robot to another body for continued life in the ongoing futuristic robot war. Via flashback, we also learn how the robot society evolved from our own present-day world. In the final few pages of issue #0, Gunbot-856 in a renewed persona battles the famed Magnus and loses, ready to be recycled by the collective consciousness for yet another personality download into another body.

     This title is an interesting successor to the Silver Age Magnus series that has a mixed quality to it, keeping it in the average-quality positive review category.  On the plus side, writer Fred Van Lente succeeds in advancing the old-school structure of the Magnus storyverse with the addition of some wonderful modern-era science fiction concepts, including an intriguing evolutionary explanation of the rise of the robot society, the inclusion of nanobots in the storyline and most importantly, the exceptional idea of a robot collective consciousness that allows the destroyed battlebots to be recycled, similar to the Cylons in the remake of the Battlestar Galactica television series.  In addition, the artwork is excellent and very appropriate for the science fiction robot plot theme.

      However, two elements drag the higher quality potential of this comic book down into the average quality category.  The first is a very muddled plotline; its impossible to get a feel where this brief, one issue story fits into the overall, ongoing theme of the monthly series.  I expected issue #0 to be just that, a prequel kick-off story leading into the monthly title. Instead, we're presented with a sidebar tale that's somehow sandwiched in between whatever is going on in issue #2 and #3, resulting in plain confusion. 

      Secondly, the front cover and narrative introduction are very deceptive, misleading the reader into believing that this series, as well as this issue in particular, stars Leeja Clane as either a female robot fighter or at the least, a female co-star with Magnus.  Instead, Leeja has an extremely brief cameo on the first page, after which the story veers completely away from her involvement.  Frankly, her starring role on the front cover is just plain deceptive and should never have been allowed, serving merely to trick readers into wanting to read this issue in expectation of a female robot fighter lead tale.

     So in sum, a positive thumbs-up review recommendation is well-deserved for this interesting storyverse that successfully updates to modern-day reading sensibilities the Magnus comic book series.  But that thumbs-up decision is mixed with some legitimate disappointment as to the vagueness of the plot details and the deliberate misperception of the very limited role of the supposed female star of this series in this issue, which inaccurately promotes her story presence heavily on the front cover.

Groo Vs. Conan #1
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Sergio Aragones & Mark Evanier: Writers
Sergio Aragones & Thomas Yeates: Art
Tom Luth: Colors

     Dark Horse Comics has published issue #1 of a four-part mini-series entitled "Groo Versus Conan." The title is self-explanatory, pairing-up Marvel's well-known Conan The Barbarian with famed Mad Magazine artist-writer Sergio Aragones's just as well-known character Groo. For the uninitiated, Groo is a satiric riff on Conan, featuring a brainless, Homer Simpson-style idiotic version of Conan.  Aragones and Evanier co-created the "Groo The Wanderer" comic book title back in the 1970's as one of the first successful creator-owned titles in the comic book publishing industry.  Groo himself sneaks-in at number 100 on IGN's list of the "Top 100 Comic Book Heroes."  The current crossover mini-series is co-written by Sergio Aragones and Mark Evanier, with art by Sergio Aragones and Thomas Yeates, and colors by Tom Luth.

     The issue #1 story segment alternates between two sub-plots. In the first storythread, we're initially introduced to Conan doing what he does best, namely rescuing a hot damsel in distress.  Flash forward to Groo being the idiot that he usually is, in this instance being duped by an evil king into mistreating his subjects.  This first storyline ends in a bridge to issue #2, as the kingdom's subjects convince Conan to become their protector and confront Groo in next month's issue.

      The second sub-plot takes us out of the heroic fantasy plot into the "real world," focusing on the writers themselves.  As Aragones and Evanier struggle over the concept of writing this crossover series, two events combine into slapstick comedy. First, their local comic book shop is in the process of a forced eviction, leading to Aragones being hit on the head in a support demonstration.  And secondly, said head injury deludes Aragones into thinking he's Conan himself, leading to much in the way of hijinks and wackiness.  And in a weird mix of the two storylines, Aragones as the deluded Conan actually starts critiqueing a set of Groo storyboards.

     I'm a huge fan of Sergio Aragones work, from his Mad Magazine output back in my younger days through his own current comic book title, which I've previously reviewed in this column.  While I expected to be pleasantly entertained by this new title, I was also unexpectedly surprised by the very high level of satire throughout the storyline.  Perhaps its the result of the writing collaboration between Aragones and Evanier, but whatever the reason, there's an exceptional infusion of real world cultural and political satire throughout the storyline that's above and beyond the average level of humor found in a comedy-themed funny book.

     The key here is the real world sub-plot that stars the two writers.  While the Groo-Conan storythread is solid entertainment, the "Sergio and Mark" show is exceptionally funny, with a range of non-stop one-liners and socio-political riffs well-worth the price of admission.  Without being a detail spoiler, my two favorite running gags are a take-off on the state of our healthcare system, as Sergio keeps receiving opposing treatments for his head injury, and a very creative take-off on Sergio's real-world Spanish accent, which in this case has him speaking like Yoda from Star Wars.

      Had this comic book only featured a continual story starring a Conan-Groo crossover plot, it still would have deserved a positive thumbs-up review recommendation as quality reading material.  However, the alternating Sergio-Mark storythread kicks this new series up to the top of all good fanboy and fangirl reading lists.  There are only four scheduled issues in this mini-series run, so by all means get on down to That's Entertainment to snap-up your own copy of issue #1, then savor all four issues of this highly entertaining and funny riff on Conan, Groo and most importantly, the wacky adventures of their two famed writers as they strive to deal with their own nutty lives while creating a joint Conan and Groo adventure!

Adventures Of Superman #15
Publisher: D.C. Comics
Ron Marz: Writer
Evan "Doc" Shaner: Art
Matthew Wilson: Colors

     DC's Adventures Of Superman title is currently up to issue #15.  I previously reviewed an early issue, giving it a favorable review for the three short tales presented in that particular issue, and wanted to check back and see how the title is faring over a year later.  The current issue is scripted by Ron Marz with art by Evan "Doc" Shaner and colors by Matthew Wilson.

     Issue #15 features one full-length, stand alone story entitled "Only Child."  The plot features two interweaving sub-plots. The shorter storythread features Clark Kent defending against Lois Lane's cynicism a feature article he's written about two separated brothers who found each other late in life.  It's clear that Clark is defensive about the story due to his own lack of siblings.  In the lengthier storyline, when a giant robot crashes from outer space into Metropolis, it turns-out that the robot was a long-lost creation of Superman's father Jor-El, leading our hero to start having sibling feelings toward his Dad's robot creation. Without being a detail spoiler, the duo succeed in defending Earth from an alien invasion, with the robot destroyed in the process. The story ends on a poignant note, as a grieving Superman enshrines the fallen robot in his Fortress Of Solitude.

     I was very impressed with the previous issue of this title that I reviewed, in that it seems to have found its own distinctive niche in the wide range of various Superman titles by featuring both a fresh artistic vision and a unique emotional tone of Superman Family storytelling.  Issue #15 continues that exceptional creative approach in three positive ways.  First, the artistic team does a great job in presenting a fresh styling of the well-known Superman storyverse characters, with a particular emphasis on very impressive and wide-ranging, realistic facial expressions. Secondly, the emotional content of the story is very impressive. There's a lot of feeling and exploration of the human side of Superman/Clark Kent in this title. This particular story succeeds well in exploring Superman's natural feelings of loneliness due to him missing his original family, with the family robot filling the gap for awhile. Superman's grieving over the robot's death is actually quite moving and succeeds in the goal of humanizing his well-known struggle to balance his life on Earth with the emotional void in his life due to Krypton's loss.

     Third and finally, I was happy to see that the structure of this title has shifted from presenting three short tales per issue to the standard one feature-length story.  It works much better in giving the creative team adequate space and breathing room to explore the emotional content that's at the heart of the Adventures Of Superman storytelling approach.  So a positive thumbs-up review recommendation is well-deserved for this unique and refreshing Superman title, which provides a high quality and very entertaining storyline with a fresh fictional perspective on everyone's favorite Man Of Steel.

Miles Morales: The Ultimate Spider-Man #4
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Brian Michael Bendis: Writer
David Marquez: Art
Justin Ponsor: Colors

      Marvel Comics is up to issue #4 of its "Mile Morales: The Ultimate Spider-Man" title. For the uninitiated, the Ultimates line of Marvel comic book titles presents alternate reality versions of well-known and traditional Marvel Comics storyverses and characters.  The much-publicized "Death of Peter Parker" event from last year occurred in this Ultimates storyverse, with Black Hispanic teenager Miles Morales picking-up the Spidey mantle from the fallen Parker.  The series is written by A-list writer Brian Michael Bendis with art by David Marquez and colors by Justin Ponsor.

     Issue #4 is the current installment of an ongoing multi-issue storyarc and interweaves two sub-plots.  The first is more soap opera-oriented, focusing on teenage angst; after Miles reveals his superhero identity to girlfriend Katie Bishop, the girl freaks-out and in a lengthy emotional scene with her sister, talks about her fears and shock over Miles putting his life at risk as Spidey.  The lengthier second sub-plot brings thrilling action-adventure to the story installment, as Miles faces-down a buffed-up, demonic super-sized version of Norman Osbourne/The Green Goblin. The story builds to a dramatic climax as the assumed-dead Peter Parker arrives on the scene and teams-up with Miles to defeat the fire-breathing Goblin.  Next month's story installment will most likely focus on the emotional fall-out among the Spiderman support characters regarding Parker's seeming rise from the dead.

      I always enjoy reading Ultimates comic book titles, for the thrill of the alternate reality element in each presentation, and this issue is no exception.  Three major story elements combine to make this a high quality thrill-ride adventure of a read.  The first is the fun of the alternate reality details.  I just plain loved the fact that seemingly everyone who has died or disappeared over the years in the main Spider-Man story universe is alive and well in this Ultimates tale. We're treated to Gwen Stacy, Aunt May and everyone else grouped together and hanging-out in this title. Secondly, writer Bendis brings his to-be-expected A-game to the scripting, nicely balancing emotional elements and extreme action-adventure throughout the tale.  Bendis excels in this story segment in weaving all players together by the final few pages into group-wide mutual shock and emotion, as everyone reacts in their own way to the return of Peter Parker.

     Third, the artwork is exceptional here, with artist David Marquez and colorist Just Ponsor particularly excelling in portraying the Goblin-two Spideys battle scene. You can just feel the heat rising off of the pages as the Goblin wields his flaming ability against our two heroes, along with the fiery devastation of the residential neighborhood battle site.

     As a final review comment, I was also relieved to learn that the whole "Death of Peter Parker" event has taken place in the Ultimates storyverse.  I'm not a regular Spider-Man reader these days, and just assumed this past year that Marvel had positioned the event within the main Spidey title, which irked my personal preference for maintaining storyverse continuity over the years for favorite comic book characters.  But now I know that we can have our cake and eat it too, as the saying goes, with both the usual Peter Parker titles and this Ultimates spin on Spider-Man.  So enjoy the variety and definitely take the time to be entertained by this very well-crafted and high quality alternate version of everyone's favorite Wall-Crawling superhero, Spider-Man!

Contest Winner Announcement!!!

     Our latest contest challenged you to pitch to us your current favorite television show or series.  And our contest winner is (drumroll, please...) Erin O'Connor, who tells us in her own words: "Right now I'm really into The Leftovers on HBO. Ever since LOST ended, I've been looking for something complex and mysterious.  I love shows that challenge you to figure out what's happening and then when you think you've got it, they turn everything upside down."  An interesting choice and a good explanation/pitch for the rest of us to check-out The Leftovers.  Congratulations to Erin who wins our first prize $10.00 gift certificate to That's Entertainment!

New Contest Challenge Announcement!!!

     Last week was the special 60th anniversary publication milestone for the well-known sports magazine Sports Illustrated. In honor of the magazine's birthday, the Bongo Congo Panel Of Contest Judges have decreed that we challenge you this week with a special Sports Illustrated trivia contest.  Your challenge is to e-mail us at no later than Wednesday, September 3 with the correct answer to the following question:  Which famed American athlete has appeared on the front cover of Sports Illustrated over the years more than anyone else?  Hint: this person has appeared on the famed front cover a total of fifty (50) times!  As always, in the event of multiple correct answers, the winner of our first prize $10.00 gift certificate to That's Entertainment will be chosen via a roll of the dice.  Please note that our $10.00 gift certificate to That's Entertainment is redeemable for regular retail merchandise or in-store, ongoing specials, only.

     That's all for now, so have two great Patriots pre-season training camp and exhibition game-watching (Go Pats!) and comic book reading weeks and see you again on Friday, September 5 Here In Bongo Congo!

Friday, August 8, 2014

Comic Reviews 8/8/14

Here In Bongo Congo

     The summer weather has been great lately, so Good King Leonardo has decreed that we review a nice variety of four interesting-looking new comic books to see whether or not they're worthy for everyone's summertime reading pleasure! So let's get right to it and see how these four titles stack-up against each other:
Vampirella #1
Publisher: Dynamite Comics
Nancy A. Collins: Writer
Patrick Berkenkotter: Pencils
Dennis Crisostomo: Inks
Jorge Sutil: Colors

     In honor of everybody's favorite sexy vampire being honored recently with this year's Overstreet Comic Book Price Guide front cover honor, I decided to review this week issue #1 of Dynamite Comics's new Vampirella comic book title. For the uninitiated, Vampirella was created in 1969 by legendary comics creator Forest J. Ackerman as the hostess/narrator for Warren Publishing's black-and-white horror magazine line.  Over time, she evolved into a main story character herself, portrayed at various times in either satiric or dramatic horror storylines.  This new title is written by Nancy A. Collins with pencils by Patrick Berkenkotter, inks by Dennis Crisostomo and colors by Jorge Sutil.

     This new title continues the storyverse from an earlier title run, in which Vampirella worked in partnership with a secret society within the Catholic Church, fighting against demons and evil, including the Cult of Chaos, led by the evil Ethan Shroud.  In this kick-off segment of a new multi-issue storyline, Shroud's spirit has possessed an innocent man, who's kidnapped his young daughter with plans to sacrifice her to allow a powerful demon to enter our reality and destroy mankind.  So the secret church group dispatches Vampirella to investigate the situation, whereupon she stumbles upon the plot.  Without being a detail spoiler, an extended confrontation with the cult goes badly for our heroine and by issues end, her church allies are considering the possibility of having to kill Vampirella to keep her from being controlled by the cult and turned against humanity.

     I've never read more than a few Vampirella comics and magazines over the years and as such had no previous preference among the many stylistic interpretations that have been produced over the years by various publishers of this horror character. As such, I was very entertained and comfortable with this latest spin on the fanged heroine.  A few strong points are worth noting.  First, writer Nancy A. Collins's script is top-notch, providing a plot that's dramatic, scary and rich in believable narrative and characterization.  She blindsides the reader at key points with unexpected horror twists that are intense but not excessively gory to the point of distracting the reader from the storyline.

     Secondly, the artwork is appropriate, giving us the extremely sexy Vampirella which is a major point of this character in the first place.  She's probably the sexiest horror character ever created in comics publishing, ranked 35th in the Comics Buyer's Guide list of "100 Sexiest Women In Comics."  And finally, the whole concept of the uneasy alliance between vampiress and Catholic Church as partners against evil is a fascinating twist on the traditional religion vs. vampire story structure. The kick-off storyline brings a nice dramatic major element to that situation, with Vampirella becoming likely spell-bound to the cult, leaving us with the cliffhanger of the church possibly having to kill the contaminated Vampirella.

     So in sum, a positive thumbs-up review recommendation is well-deserved for this new comic book title that features our current Overstreet Price Guide covergirl.  This new title is an entertaining and worthwhile read for both horror genre and non-genre fanboys and fangirls, alike.

The City On The Edge Of Forever #2
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Scott Tipton & David Tipton: Writers
J.K. Woodward: Art

     IDW Publishing is up to issue #2 of a limited series adaptation of Harlan Ellison's original teleplay for the famed 1967 Season One Star Trek episode "City On The Edge Of Forever."  For the uninitiated, the award-winning episode by famed writer Harlan Ellison is considered one of the most iconic science fiction stand-alone episodes in the history of television.  The comic book adaption's goal is to reintroduce many of Ellison's original teleplay story features and details which didn't make it into the television episode.  The adaption co-writers are Scott Tipton and David Tipton with art by J.K. Woodward.

     The basic premise of either version of the plot is time travel.  When the Star Trek crew encounters the "Guardian Of Forever" on a distant planet, a delusional Dr. McCoy uses the Guardian's time portal to visit Earth's past and dangerously alter history and the present. So its up to Kirk and Spock to chase Bones to depression-era Chicago, where the plot branches into both sci-fi drama and romance, as Kirk falls in love with Edith Keeler, played in the t.v. episode by actress Joan Collins.  Without being a detail spoiler, the plot becomes very emotional as Kirk has to choose between saving Emily's life and alternately letting her die in order to save the proper timeline.

     This is a highly entertaining and wonderful adaptation of the classic Star Trek episode that succeeds for at least three reasons.  First, its just plain fun for readers to compare the differences between the original television episode and the comic book adaptation.  This issue #2 story segment unfolds the section of the story in which Kirk and Spock both discover that the timeline has been altered and initially arrive back in 1930's Chicago.  Two major differences in the storytelling stand-out: first, the nature of the timeportal Guardian is radically different from the t.v. show. Secondly, Ellison's script surprisingly highlighted the role of crewmember Yeoman Rand in the story. Here, she's a key player and one tough cookie in dealing with the timeline changes onboard The Enterprise, toughly holding down the fort as Kirk and Spock head-off on their adventure into the past.

     Third, J.K. Woodward's artwork is exceptional, providing us with oil painting-like renderings in the style of acclaimed comic artist Alex Ross.  Woodward more than meets the tough challenge of having to duplicate the facial features of the well-known Star Trek television actors, which he pulls-off to perfection.  IDW Publishing is also smart enough to provide the reader with "Edge Words," a three -page back-of-the-issue monthly column in which Harlan Ellison converses with fans, friends and commentators about the ongoing adaptation.  Its a fun and fascinating dialogue, as we learn a lot about the process back in 1967 that shaped the t.v. episode in ways both similar and different from Ellison's original teleplay.

     So a very positive tip-of-the-review hat is due to the creative team, IDW Publishing and of course Harlan Ellison himself, for teaming-up to provide readers with this gem of a comic book adaptation of this Star Trek episode which holds such an honored place in the history of broadcast television.

Grayson #1
Publisher: D.C. Comics
Tim Seeley & Tom King: Writers
Mikel Janin: Art
Jeremy Cox: Colors

      Another new comic book title in DC's "The New 52!" line-up is Grayson, featuring a new role for the former original Robin, Dick Grayson.  The new series is written by Tim Seeley from a plot provided by Tom King, with art by Mikel Janin and colors by Jeremy Cox.

     This new series is a spin-off from DC's Forever Evil title, in which Dick Grayson's Nightwing superheroing identity was apparently revealed to the world by the Crime Syndicate Of America.  In this premier issue, Dick goes undercover to infiltrate the dangerous spy organization known as Spyral.  Most of the plot is high adventure, as Grayson and some spy team members ride the Russian Trans-Siberian Railway on a mission to abduct a Russian passenger.  Without being a detail spoiler, after a lot of dramatic action the abduction is successful, whereupon Dick learns of an unexpected superpower wielded by the supposedly harmless passenger.  By issue's end, the danger from the abductee is nullified, while Dick gets ready for more internal mole spying against Spyral as the organization plans to publicly reveal more famous superhero identities in next month's story segment.

     I enjoyed reading this kick-off issue of Grayson and give it an average to above-average positive review recommendation.  There's nothing exceptional or earth-shattering to this storyline, just three positive elements that result in a solidly entertaining read.  The first is the new perspective on Dick Grayson. Its fresh and interesting to read a tale in which the whole world knows that he's Robin/Nightwing. Secondly, its fun to see Grayson in a "civilian spy" role, instead of galevanting as a costumed superhero.  And finally, the artwork is very well-done, with some exceptional panels effectively conveying the fast action-adventure sequences of spy-versus-spy conflict on the fast-moving train.

     So in sum, Grayson is a solid, well-produced new title that provides both an interesting new take on the seemingly ever-changing identity of the former Robin/Nightwing Dick Grayson.  It should also be interesting to read the eventual future issue/story segment when Dick's former mentor Batman/Bruce Wayne inevitably makes a guest appearance on the scene.

Batman #33
Publisher: D.C. Comics
Scott Snyder: Writer
Greg Capullo: Pencils
Danny Miki: Inks
Fco Plascencia: Colors

     This month's Batman issue #33 concludes the ongoing "Zero Year Savage City" multi-issue storyline.  I had reviewed an earlier issue in this series, the plot of which centers upon The Riddler cutting-off Gotham City from the outside world and running the captive metropolis as his personal playground.  The storyline is scripted by A-list writer Scott Snyder with pencils by Greg Capullo, inks by Danny Miki and colors by Fco Pascencia.

     The plot comes to a dramatic head at the very start of this concluding issue: with military jets bearing-down to bomb the city free from The Riddler's grasp, its up to a captive Batman to correctly answer twelve of The Riddler's riddles, upon which the baddie will free the city and avoid the bombing campaign.  I won't reveal a single detail of the riddle challenge, other than to comment that its the center of the plot, its extremely dramatic and takes a very unexpected turn in mid-challenge that leads to Batman's triumph.  Two sub-plots interweave with this main storythread.  One features a focus on Police Commissioner Jim Gordon as he leads a ragtag street-level guerilla combat action to assist Batman's efforts, while the other is a flashback storythread focusing on a college-age Bruce Wayne in deep mental health crisis over his emotional baggage and scars from the well-known murder of his parents.

     I was very impressed with the previous issue segment that I reviewed of this multi-issue story arc, and I have to say that this current issue #33 story concluding story segment frankly blew me away. This is A-list writer Scott Snyder exceeding his previous writing quality excellence into a new A-plus quality category.  We're in fictional literature territory with Snyder's script, brimming with tight, mature and absorbing dialogue and characterization.  My two favorite elements among many stand-out points are first of all, the creative team's particular perspective on The Riddler/Ed Nygma.  This is a young, brash punk personality version of the familiar Batman foe that deserves a place at the very top of the list of many different creative versions of this foe. The artistic team's vision of the character combines perfectly with the personality that Snyder writes for evil Ed.

    Secondly, the final eight pages of the tale take a breathtakingly unexpected turn away from the story's action-adventure into stunning emotional territory.  An old familiar girlfriend arrives at Bruce Wayne's doorstep, toward whom he relies on Alfred to determine whether he should reach out to her or rebuff her visit to protect his Batman responsibilities.  Two alternate possible futures are portrayed as Alfred weighs his decision on Bruce's behalf, and the end result is simply the most heartbreaking Batman story sequence that this aging baby boomer has ever come across in all of my Batman-reading years.  On this story element alone, Scott Snyder and the artistic team have produced that rare comic tale that deserves a place in the very small category of comic book perfection, along with a Eisner Award nomination.

     In sum, its frankly a privilege for all Batman fans to have the opportunity to enjoy this work. So by all means, catch-up on the previous issues in the Batman Zero Year series and get on down to That's Entertainment as soon as possible for a copy of this concluding issue #33!

Contest Winner Announcement!!!

      Our latest contest challenged you to tell us which famous well-known former Red Sox player has current Sox slugger David Ortiz just passed to rise in rank to number 36 on the list of all-time Major League Baseball (MLB) home run leaders.  We had several correct entries for this contest, so via a roll-of-the-dice, our contest winner is (drumroll, please...) Mike Dooley, who correctly tells us that David Ortiz just passed Red Sox Hall Of Famer Carl Yastrzemski into 36th place.  Mike adds that all those years of him listening to sports talk radio finally paid off!  Congratulations to Mike who wins our first prize gift certificate to That's Entertainment!

New Contest Challenge Announcement!!!

     The Bongo Congo Panel Of Contest Judges have decreed that we take a break this week from sports trivia challenges and cleanse our contest palates with a television-themed contest.  So your challenge this week is to e-mail us at no later than Wednesday, August 20 and tell us what current television show or series is your favorite and why you like it so much.  There's lots of good stuff out there right now, from summer replacement series to cable t.v. shows to hits galore.  So make a pitch to us of why your favorite show should be must-see t.v. for the rest of us!  Please note that our $10.00 gift certificate to That's Entertainment is redeemable for regular retail merchandise or in-store, ongoing specials, only.

     That's all for now, so have two great August beach-going and comic book reading weeks and see you again on Friday, August 22 Here In Bongo Congo!