10 April 2013

All of the Lights

Did you hear? The new X-Men comic features an all female team comprised of Storm, Rogue, Kitty, Psylocke, Jubilee, and Rachel Grey. I don't care if this is a marketing thing or whatever, I'm all in. I mean, I even read that Jubilee is the main character and if that's true, I'm about to start collecting comics again. I mean, I run the pre-emiment Jubilee Tumblr, Fuck Yeah Jubilee, on the entire Internet so I feel like it's my absolute calling and duty, right?

Jubilation Lee has come a long way since Uncanny X-Men #244. She went from being a mall rat, to Wolvie's sidekick, to getting shuffled down to Generation X, to getting some love in the X-Men cartoon, to getting whitewashed in the classic but rarely seen Generation X made-for-TV movie (her character was played by Heather McComb, James Van Der Beek's wife), to getting her scenes chopped in X2: X-Men United. Also, she had her own mini-series, was a playable character in X-Men Legends, lost her powers and became Wondra of the New Warriors, and is still recovering from a nasty battle with vampirism. Whew! Basically I can not wait to start reading this X-Men series. Mom, clear out space in the garage, it's comic book collecting time (again)!

Marvel recently launched a new service, Marvel Unlimited, which is like Spotify for its comics. Available for iDevices, I'm seriously thinking of testing it out even though I lack an iPad to properly view the art in all its glory. But having all those archived comics makes me salivate. X-Men forever.

Speaking of comics, or um, graphic novels, a couple of weeks ago we went to Carnegie Hall to check out an interesting symphony inspired by Art Spiegelman's 9/11 memoir. The University of Kansas Wind Ensemble was on hand to play a piece commissioned from composer Mohammed Fairouz -- who is sickeningly, just twenty seven. The piece was called "Symphony No. 4, In the Shadow of No Towers," and its four movements were built upon panels from Spiegelman's In the Shadow of No Towers.

The night before, we read Spiegelman's large format graphic novel -- Speigelman did Maus, which everyone should have read by now -- and got very curious how the symphony would sound. I am not a musician, although I did spend many years playing the flute, and we sat a little too close to the front of the theater to fully experience the wonder that is Carnegie Hall. Pro tip, from my godsister who plays for the Boston Symphony Orchestra: The acoustics for Carnegie Hall is conducive to sitting up high. Next time I'll know sitting fifth row is actually a sucker's seat. I was so excited to be up close too. "This is not a concert, it's a classy symphony."

I'd explain more about what Fairouz's piece was like, but it's probably best for me to turn it over to the following links and videos. Suffice to say, my favorite part of the symphony was the third movement, when the red and blue states went to (sonic) war! It wasn't quite the "1812 Overture," but it was something. Also, if you want to test out your classical music skills, try this Sporcle quiz, naming famous pieces of classical music from audio snippets. I did this with my friend and she shamed me and knocked it out of the park. Of course, she's like a classically trained pianist, but still. Losing always hurts...