Pap!

So this week has gone by in a blur...

First two days, SuperWife was sick as a dog -- horrible migraine, debilitating nausea interspersed with blinding stomach cramps and generally enervating fatigue levels. Monday she was so bad off I wanted to take her to the emergency room but she wouldn't let me. Tuesday she was improved but not enough to go back to work. Monday was two of the SuperKids' first day back at school, but all I can really remember is worrying all the time about my wife, and being on hand to fetch her stuff as necessary.

Wednesday she felt good enough to get back to work. So life got back to normal and things started to accelerate again. I walked down the street about five blocks in something like 104 degree heat to pick up the keys to Nate's new apartment. Upon doing so, I noted that the tag on the keyring bore a different number than what we'd been told would be Nate's new apartment. Got home, got SuperWife investigating that. Turns out, the managing company had to make a last minute substitution. Instead of a basement apartment, which would have been nice and cool even in a power failure, Nate is getting a third floor slice of Hell that, should the electric go out in the middle of the night in summer, may well end up broiling him in his sleep.

We know this because we went over last night to do a little cleaning for Nate, and there was no AC in the apartment, although the electricity was on. Staying there for any length of time was just courting heat stroke. SuperWife called the managers on it today and supposedly, there are AC repairmen over there right now getting things fixed, and it turns out Nate has a window unit air conditioner anyway, so if worse comes to worse, he won't fry. But it's been just one landmine after another with this apartment rental company.

Nate called from the road and I advised him of all this just a few minutes ago. He has no cell phone and has a difficult time making calls... his call to us wound up costing me $17 on a credit card, as our combined phone/DSL/cable provider, surprise, surprise, has blocked collect calls to their phone customers... something I know from my time at the Sprint call center many third party phone providers do to avoid arguments over collect call charges, but which I had not known, until now, that our provider did. So he gave me his moving company's 800 number and had me call them, where I spoke with a refreshingly professional woman named Barbara, who got the address change taken care of with a minimum of fuss. She also gave me a rough ETA for Nate's stuff arriving, and confirmed that we would get a call with a better ETA 24 hours prior, so we could get down there to meet the guy.

All of this will certainly seem well worth it, and trivial, once Nate is here. But for now, and the last month or so, it's just been a grind. We're overjoyed to be getting Nate here and our lives will improve immeasurably from his proximity, but fate certainly hasn't made the transition easy. On the other hand, if we hadn't been here to do all this leg work (and the vastly majority of it has been done by my charming, beautiful, brilliant wife, and, yes, I am STILL the luckiest man in the universe), I doubt Nate could have gotten here at all. This has all been much MUCH harder to pull off than any move I've ever undertaken.

So that's all that. I also got a little surprise box in the mail from WizKids yesterday. See, a week and a half ago I finally got around to mailing them back a Starhawk sculpt mismatched with a Weapon Alpha base I pulled from a booster of Supernova back before Christmas. Usually it takes months to get a replacement figure from them so I was a little shocked to find a package back from them so soon. I opened it and found two figures inside -- an Experienced Aleta, which I already had (the REV set that Starhawk is from is a mixed sculpt set -- the rookie and experienced are Aleta, a female character who shares Starhawk's physical form with him, while the Veteran, which is very hard to find, is Starhawk, the male half of the Starhawk/Aleta team) and a Power Cosmic Dr. Doom LE, the mailaway from Supernova.

Normally I'd be delighted to get a PC Doom, since I didn't buy a brick of Supernova and didn't send away for the LE. But I'd already gotten one in a trade a few months ago. Still, he's a hard piece to get as he doesn't come in a booster, and he's going for $20 to $25 on Ebay right now. So I've offered him for trade on the WK board, and it tooks like I'm going to get four of the figs I'm looking for from AVENGERS -- Grim Reaper, Yondu, the Ultimates Captain Britain, the Ultimates Quicksilver -- and the Carter Hall LE from ORIGIN, which is the best plastic version of the Silver Age Hawkman I've yet seen. So that's all right.

Over HERE, though, I discover that my buddy Mike Norton also got a little package from WizKids yesterday... an advance booster of JUSTICE LEAGUE.

Yeesh. Some guys have ALL the luck.

So, according to the little paper insert in the astonishlingly lucky Orto's advance booster, here's what's in the set:

Batman C
Aquaman C
Creeper C
Firehawk C
Mento C
Heat Wave C
Icicle C
Lex Luthor C
The Joker C
Bulleteer C
Black Canary C
Crimson Fox C
Dr. Light C
Green Arrow C
Gypsy C
Bouncing Boy C
Parasite U
Firestorm U
Merlyn U
Black Hand U
King Shark U
Professor Ivo U
Toyman U
Chronos U
Dr. Alchemy U
Captain Boomerang U
The Flash U
Zatanna U
Zauriel U
Plastic Man U
Tharok U
Bronze Tiger U
Vigilante R
August General in Iron R
Deadman R
Granny Goodness R
Wonder Woman R
Batman and Robin R
Batzarro R
Hector Hammond R
Mr. Mxyzptlk R
Abra Kadabra R
Dr. Polaris R
Major Disaster R
Aztek R
Superman R
Hourman R
Dream Girl R
Shining Knight SR
Power Ring SR
Lobo SR
Amazo SR
Big Barda and Mister Miracle SR
Doomsday SR
Green Lantern SR
Time Trapper SR
The Flash SR
Batman SR
Wonder Woman SR
Superman SR

Those who care can see a great many of the dials here. For myself, I will just say that I'm overall very happy with the character selection I see in this set. A few are figs I'll have no use for (Zauriel? Honkey, please...), but all in all, this expansion seems to have a nice Silver Agey feel to it. The Flash's Rogue's Gallery gets a nice boost, we get several more Green Lantern villains, the inevitable Batman and Robin Duo Character (along with a less predictable, but still fun, Mr. Miracle and Big Barda Duo). The Legion pickes up a few more members, including the long awaited Bouncing Boy, and for a change, Seth didn't entirely screw up the Special Power on BB... although I will note that my definition of HyperSonic Speed, which allows characters to move, launch a Close Combat Attack, then repeat as necessary until their movement is exhausted, is a much easier way to deal with BB's attack style than the rather cumbersome and not often effective Ricochet power Seth has come up with.

Overall, the set looks good to me. I'd like to see some sculpts so I can tell exactly which versions of characters like Green Lantern and Green Arrow are in this set, as that will make a huge difference as to how much I like them. But, still, for now... and always with the codicil that dial design can still turn a character I'm delighted to see into a crushing disappointment, and noting that Seth seems to screw up 2 Special Powers for every 1 he does correctly... still, for now, this looks like a MUCH better set than AVENGERS.

Which is fucking intolerable to me, but, what the hell.

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