Currently Reading and Enjoying….Damage!

So DC Comcs launched a new set of comics following their last big crossover event called Dark Metal. Well it was Batman driven and I’m not a big fan of the Dark Knight, but a new initiative introducing new characters and their various series spun out of it. My favorite of these is Damage.

The story and gimmick of Damage is a super soldier turned monster. I know it’s borrowed heavy from Captain America and the Incredible Hulk. The series throws a gimmick that Ethan Avery, the soldier that became Damage, can only become him for one hour every 24 hours. As the action unfolds through the comic we get a counter in panel.

Avery and Damage are portrayed as two separate consciousnesses that can communicate with each other. The dynamic has unfolded since issue one and develops more each issue. The action in the series really sets it apart from everything else. The action and pacing is fantastic and a big drawl. In just 7 issues Damage has taken down the Suicide Squad, fought Wonder Woman and had a huge fight in New Orleans with Poison Ivy and Swamp Thing.

The hero initiative began by DC Comics back in the early Spring of this year hasn’t fared particularly well sales numbers wise. The Immortal Men has already been marked for cancellation. I don’t feel DC has particularly advertised the line very well and has lacked overall support. Damage sold 17,000 plus copies in June, not setting the world on fire but the ax hasn’t swung yet. Hopefully positive word of mouth will get more people to give the series a try, I really like it. It’s the only series I’m up to date on at this point.

Well have a great weekend and stick with Mid American Culture for fresh content daily.

10 Outstanding Facts About Ted Williams

Good morning all, I watched this week’s PBS American Masters: Ted Williams and it was terrific. He was always one of my favorite ballplayers, but the documentary kicked my love into a new level. Here’s 10 facts about Ted Williams, and I highly recommend that epsiode.

Continue reading “10 Outstanding Facts About Ted Williams”

The Dying of the Light

Good morning, today I’ll share with you another of my favorite poems, Do Not Go Gentle into that Goodnight By Dylan Thomas.

Dylan Thomas was born in Whales in 1914. He was an average student who dropped out of school at age 16. He sought work as a journalist and would eventually work for the BBC. He would rise to literary notoriety in 1934 with the publication of his work, Light Breaks Where No Sun Shines. Thomas married Caitlin Macnamara in 1937. The family would struggle financially as Dylan worked as a writer. He would take on reading tours to supplement income. His marriage to Caitlin was fairly destructive and they both drank heavily. Dylan would also become a pretty big fan of American candy bars while he toured the U.S. and would add to his unhealthy lifestyle. During his fourth trip to the U.S. he fell gravely ill and would pass away at the young age of 39. It was the time in America that would give Dylan Thomas his popularity and following in literary history. I first encountered him in High School where my literature teacher had a framed photo of him hanging off the chalk board. Here’s my favorite Thomas poem.

Do not go gentle into that good night

Dylan Thomas, 19141953

Do not go gentle into that good night,

Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light

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Here is Sir Anthony Hopkins doing a brilliant reading. Have a great weekend and keep checking in with Mid-American-Culture as we bring fresh content daily.

Posthumously Discovering the Sound.

I inherited all my Mom’s Beatles records when I was a kid. I’d spin the 45’s all day long with my Michael Jackson Thriller singles. I’d spend the weekends often with my cousin, and I’d get up early with my Aunt and we’d watch the Beatles cartoon while I nibbled on a Little Debbie cake and she had her coffee. John was my favorite Beatle. My Aunt liked Paul. It was probably 1983 or 1985. I’d see Paul McCartney doing Wings stuff, plus he had a duet with Michael Jackson, The Girl is Mine, eventually I’d ask my mom and Dad about John Lennon and what he was doing now, I knew the Beatles were from before my time. I knew Ringo was in movies, my parents had rented Caveman. Not sure about George Harrison, unaware of where he fell in my elementary school mind. However it would be answered soon in the form of his massive hit I Got My Mind Set on You.

My parents would tell me that John Lennon had been dead for a few years. Since 1980 actually. 3 years after I was born. He was shot to death outside his New York home by a fan who had sought an autograph earlier. This broke my little heart. John! The funny one from Hard Days Night. He sang my 2 favorite songs, Twist and Shout and Revolution. It was just sad and strange that someone I’d spent do much time listening to and watching was gone, and I didn’t even know it.

Of course this happens all the time. Kids are growing up listening to Kurt Cobain, Biggie and Tupac, and of course Michael Jackson just to name a few. What made me think of this was the passing of Frightened Rabbits lead singer Scott Hutchinson. Earlier in the week I’d seen he was trending on Twitter as his friends and fans put out a plea to look out for him and hoping for his safe return after he’d walked away from his hotel room in Scotland on Wednesday. I’d assumed the guy perhaps simply needed a break and took a walk. Apparently however he struggled with depression issues most of his life.

On Friday it was announced that Scott Hutchinson had passed away. Devastated fans posted pics and song lyrics. He’d taken the time to write fans back and they now were lamenting his loss along side pictures of hand written letters. He seemed like an incredibly geniune person. He had tweeted a few times after he’d gone missing just to remind people to love and care for each other.

I had never listened to the band Frightened Rabbits knowingly. I’ve done some Snow Patrol radio on Pandora and some of their songs seemed to ring a bell Friday as I played their music on Spotify. I was blown away and instantly fell in love with the sound. I worked all day listening to The Wood Pile, Get Out, and Keep Yourself Warm. I’d learned the band was originally formed in 2004 and began playing local pubs around Glasgow, before recording their first album in 2006.

So here I was sad about the loss of this talented and lovely gentleman, but also thouroughly enjoying this new catalog of music. I guess the thing to take away here is to enjoy life and keep a look out for others who may rotate into your atmosphere. Sadness and Depression can affect all of us from time to time. However for some it’s harder to shake off the shakles of despair. Be an ear to listen and a shoulder to lean on. There are hotlines available for professional help. The suicide hotline is 1-800-273-8255 use it if you need it, pass it on if you know someone else that might. Have a good week people. Look after each other. Thanks for reading and checking out Mid-American-Culture and I’m gonna leave you with some Frightened Rabbits. Peace.

Halo Tactical Legendary Crate.

Hey folks, I received my second Halo Crate this week and it was awesome! Way better than my first one. You can find that earlier blog on the site if you wish. Let’s get started.

The theme of this crate was Tactical and featured heavily from Halo 2, my favorite Halo game.

The art created for the box focused on Sgt. Johnson. The UNSC Marine was also this months collector figure.

Very cool little guy in a neat post leaning on the Guilty Spark. He looks neat next to last boxes Master Chief.

We also got coffee mug that I assume Johnson would have loved. It has an “I ❤️ tanks” motif with the fun as hell to drive Scorpion. I’m bound to enjoy lots of coffee in that mug.

We also got the every box weapon pin, this time a Brute rifle.

Apparently there was a gold variant.

Now we get to what made the crate for me. I love the Arbiter, almost as much as Master Chief and we got to super cool items that celebrate Thel ‘Vadam. First we got these crazy cool socks that look like the Arbiter’s armor. The box even suggest walking on your tip toes like the Sangheili do. Hahaha

Love these socks! Love them so much I hate to wear them because I wanna have them forever.

Lastly we got the shirt, again very Arbiter specific, but it’s like a deep cut from one of your favorite bands.

It’s the Arbiter Mark of Shame he received at the beginning of Halo 2. Simple but iconic. Love it!

So just a fantastic subscription box from Loot Crate. The next box is in May and it’s Arena themed.

What I’m Reading

Happy Saturday everyone, I thought today I’d write about this fantastic book I’m reading. It’s called The Kill Artist by Daniel Silva. It’s about a former Israeli Secret Intelligence officer named Gabriel Allon, who now works as a meticulous art restorer.

I grew up reading spy type thrillers, in Middle School I read the Ian Fleming James Bond novels, Live and Let Die was my favorite. I also read The Cardinal of the Kremlin by Tom Clancy which was great because I’d already seen the film The Hunt for Red October and it was exciting to follow those characters like Jack Ryan and Marko Ramius again.

I guess one of the big things is that I enjoy continueing stories, probably a result of being a life long comic book reader and get new adventures with my favorite characters each month on the regular.

They are numerous long running novel series. I’ve read 13 of the 15 Longmire novels by Craig Johnson. However, in getting back to Silva and Gabriel Allon, the book is written incredibly well. Very well paced and the supporting characters are well thought out and developed. Usually I want to get back to the main characters when other authors devote a chapter to the antagonist, but Silva makes you wanna know the back story of the entire depth of the terrorist background.

The cool thing I love about the novel is that Gabriel is also a world class art restorer and he is working on a Rembrandt and a hidden find that an art dealer picked up for cheap at a Christie’s auction that could end up being quite a prize. However the art gets put on hold as Gabriel is asked again to comeback to the spy game and possibly have a chance to assassinate the Palestine terrorist responsible for the death of his wife and child years before.

The Kill Artist is the first in a 17 book series as of 2017. It’s a tight read with deep characters and some art thrown in. Plus Gabriel is around 50 years old and that’s a neat change of pace as well.

MGM is currently in the process of making a series based on the books. Odds are this will suck, but if you wanna get a feel for the character now before Hollywood casts a 25 year old hunk meat head, now is the time. Consequently, my actor for Gabriel Allon would be Daniel Day Lewis. Enjoy your weekend and please check out fresh content daily from Mid-American-Culture.

How I learned to stop bitching and love The Last Jedi.

So I love books and movies. It’s the foundation of who I am really. A gentlemen at work says I “Love fake shit so much” in referencing the novel I usually have slid in my lunch bag or the geek t-shirt I’m wearing. At any rate, I had a pretty hard stand on the latest Star Wars offering for months. I had the feeling it would not go as I had hoped. Kinda like when Luke tells Rey something similar in regard to her force journey. I thought we’d finally get a full fledged Jedi Master Luke Skywalker taking on the First Order and being his old heroic self I’d had so many plastic versions of.  The film is incredibly smart and knows what we really want, but for the sake of story won’t give it to us. Again, Luke asks Rey what she wants? For him to stand against the forces of the First Order with a laser sword? Luke knows the actual absurdity of that even if Rey and us viewers do not.

So I was mad at this movie before I even saw it. I didn’t want to see a character I’d grown up with die on screen. I wanted Luke to have grown to a happy life after the struggles of the original trilogy, to make up for the short comings of Obi-Wan and Yoda and raise up a new class of galaxy protectors. Not to grow old and bitter on a wet rock, alone among the cosmos.  Life is hard and bitter, I get that. I’ve read plenty of books and lived through some very disappointing things myself. Life is often sad and hard. Things don’t often work out the way we plan. I complained about corporate over Lord Disney sucking the life out of the franchise and blah blah blah. It was actually quite a risk on their part choosing to tell the story the director Rian Johnson wanted  to make and not a dipped in plastic feel good romp.

The heart of the story for me actually comes from the character DJ, the code breaker. After betraying Finn and Rose to the higher bidding First Order, he shows this hologram of all these weapon sales generated by decades of war. He shows the Empire/ First Order stuff but then, an X-Wing shows up.

Questions are left in the air, why and how did the First Order rise so quickly? How could the New Republic fold so fast. Leia has fought her entire life, is it all she knows? Uncle Owen begged Luke to stay on the farm, to not get involved as Old Ben Kenobi says. What life could he have had? Family and peace? He sought adventure and he redeemed his father because of his plight, but not much else. It’s a pretty powerful insight to give into sci-fi cultural heroes.

So now I love The Last Jedi. Visually stunning, loved the new armored walkers and the crystal foxes, hell, I even love the porgs. It tells a deep, reflective story. We still have Chewbacca and the Falcon.  Keep the momentum going J.J. Abrams and May the Force Be With You All!starwars, thelastjedi, luke skywalker, rey, reinjohnson, Disney, story, childhood, heroes