[VIDEO] TEACHING AN OLD GOLDIE NEW TRICKS

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I find cognitive processes fascinating. No place can we see or own rudimentary steps towards making sense of this world than in animals. This is also the place we can mock how incessantly long it takes for things to stick without causing any lasting damage to the sllllooowwww learner’s psyche.

Here’s my boy Fergus trying to figure out a treat puzzle:

In video 1, we send our Golden Retriever into the fray without a plan.

In video 2, I show Fergus how to work this puzzle if he had thumbs.

In video 3 , Fergus makes the lesson his own.

Amazing how the impossible becomes easy with a little help and patience.

Patey’s Content Marketing Tip #1: Content vs. Irate Marketing

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Rob Patey As content marketing continues to give consternation to writers and marketers alike, I’ve been asked to throw down my tips for surviving this collision of historically disparate jobs. Who am I? Rob Patey. I was deemed a nut by IT marketers 15 years ago, even told to go work for Men’s Warehouse writing flyers. Today I am a content marketer, those other folks are selling suits at Men’s Warehouse! Learn, talk, and let’s make it all better! 

 

Content Marketing vs. Irate Marketing 

For my first entry into helping people survive Content marketing is a silly term. I won’t fight the mighty zeitgeist behind it (because I never take on a battle already lost), so I have found my own way of defining this “new” mode of marketing that leaves everyone outside of this profession scratching their heads (from the layman’s view, all of the flyers, brochures, ads, post cards, videos, webinars and podcasts were always viewed as content).

  • Content Marketing: A story, or the preamble to a story that people choose to read.
  • Irate Marketing: Aggressive product pitches foisted upon unsuspecting prospects filled with pablum about your product that is so chest pounded with self-bravado the writer end up with an arrhythmic heartbeat.

Now, being as much story development as dissemination throughout my career, I fully get that the buying cycle has changed.

I know well that 80% of Business2Business research is happening before your “account rep” ever talks to the person (the fact I can rattle off 12 excuses by sales on how “crappy” the leads are without even thinking, is a testament to prospect ensnaring prowess).

I know the prospect funnel has been replaced by the Engagement Web of social channels. I know we need lots of content to fill every nook of YouTube, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Twitter and the like with content.BUT WE ONCE AGAIN ONLY THOUGHT OF OURSELVES IN MARKETING WHEN WE NAMED CONTENT MARKETING!!! This self-pitying naval gazing in nomenclature is what’s filling 99.99% of the business copy I see. Once again, it’s all about us.

CONTENT MARKETING SHOULD BE A GIFT OF VALUABLE AND ENGAGING INFORMATION! Because prospects can now choose whether or not to give us their time. 

While CAN-SPAM may feel like a toothless tigers as unsubscribes beget more emails (especially from v1agra offers overseas), but it empowered consumers with the sense of opting-out from all marketing and advertising. Or opting-in to the messages they actually do want to receive.

Ignoring our messages was an impossibility (or at least very difficult) in the age of billboards and magazines. Even the mundane brochures from back in the early days of B2B marketing had desk jockeys attention bound because they only had only one thing to distract them from their jobs (magazines too, but that didn’t really look like work).

Opt-in marketing and preference centers aren’t legislatively dictated, but they are certainly best-practice and how every free social microphone operates (with the exception of in-stream ads, but even those are tailored on interest to maximize ROI).

When crafting verbiage for your market, ask whether you are creating something that people will:

  • Find useful
  • Find interesting
  • Find affects them
  • Come back to keep finding more of later

Now that we know these fine four fundamentals of what content marketing should be, we can start exploring the other 4,000,000 details.

Are you being asked to be a content marketer? Need help? Need to vent? Ask or vent vitriol in the comments or via email

The Declaration of Mobile Independence and Data Bill of Rights

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Originally published by Rob Patey on IBM Securityintelligence.

Mobile Security Freedom As I was celebrating the birth of America’s freedom this July Fourth, I sparked a firecracker for the fact that I was able to use my tablet to take a meeting in a place where the Fourth of July is just another day of the week.

 

I was offered a stay of execution from the team, but an hour of my time was a small sacrifice, especially since the entire event took place on my iPad and mobile phone from my back porch.

About one-and-a-half scores ago, I remember waving a sparkler at Newark Liberty International Airport as my father headed off to Sweden for a meeting on July 5. The tablet, smartphone and the manifest destiny of last-mile broadband reaching fruition allowed me to turn off Harry Chapin’s “Cats in the Cradle” and spend time with my family watching fireworks once the meeting was finished.

This affordability — having the right device for the job at a time when I need to use it and from wherever I please — wasn’t a freedom simply handed to me. Like any great leap forward in liberation, battles were fought and accords of acceptable use had to be established between employee and employer.

As I recount some of this ancient mobile history and the hallmarks of security, productivity and mobility that resulted from them, I know some of you are going through these trials and tribulations right now. May you avoid the missteps of the past and join all of us forefathers (and mothers) for the next data deluge on the shores of the Internet of Things (IoT).

Freedom Is Never Free, Especially in Mobility

Before anyone can truly decry independence, mobile or otherwise, an upheaval from the status quo is required. An assist from France bolstered America’s liberation, and a few years later, the Bastille was taken by bayonets — not baguettes.

Since the first smartphone could sync with Active Directory, the already beleaguered IT group from the BlackBerry bonanza of the early 21st century showed rightful resistance to employee presumptions on data access. Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should. The email policy was born, and business leaders furiously rubbed rabbit feet for luck in hopes this would be enough to keep employees secure and satisfied.

It didn’t work. And today it really doesn’t work, but we’ll get there in a minute.

Mobile device management (MDM) offered the treatise of device choice balanced with one-window control. MDM became especially vital in the famous battle of bring-your-own-device (BYOD). Without the device and OS agnosticism of MDM and mobile app management (MAM), we might all still be in a state of technological dissemination without user representation.

Freedom from the confines of the office was finally won with the understanding that privacy can be maintained without completely obfuscating the view of IT. Now, policy can be crafted with a preamble of independence for both sides of technology enablement:

When in the course of business events, it becomes necessary for the enterprise to act as one people to dissolve inefficiencies that have disconnected them from each other and corporate data, and respect the freedom of choice to work on the equipment deemed best by the workers actually producing the work.

We hold these truths of mobile productivity to be self-evident, that all devices are created equal, that they are to be enabled by IT with rights to the same data as laptops and desktops and, finally, that usability is held in equal balance with security.

Mobile Independence Is a Privilege Governed by Data Rights

As devices grew more powerful, more expensive and more diversified with tablets and wearables, the concept of BYOD became more palatable to IT. However, these new abilities required more granular ways to control the data flowing in. Transient workers requiring two mailboxes on one device turned to containers. File shares could also live separated from device-level controls along with secure Web browsers and a host of other features that fulfilled a manifest destiny of productivity even when in transit. Enterprise mobility management (EMM) is the current term to define this broadening of devices, data, apps and access to devices.

One mobility program of enabling and securing endpoints, under one management pane of glass, giving mobile liberty to all.

Like the expansion of the United States, now that the mobile device has open freedom across this broad landscape of enterprise data, the CSO (or any level of security really) is a quintessential player in ensuring an uninterrupted flow of information. Mobile threat management (MTM) is how security can reach this new land. With MTM as part of a larger EMM solution, securing in-house and third-party apps from malware, advance jailbreaking or rooting rules and opening the way for seamless single sign-on access to all facets of the device becomes a reality.

The Mobile Bill of Rights

Historically, the Fourth of July isn’t about the Bill of Rights, but I beg a bit of patriotic poetic liberty to hopefully offer the foundation for your mobile liberation:

  1. Free speech, text, mail, files and access on any mobile device or endpoint, if and only if employees respect corporate data on those devices being managed through some form of endpoint and mobile security.
  2. The right to bear BYOD, without abstention from IT: When a personal device is compromised, IT will still act to triage the security of data on that device. Likewise, when apps or access to internal networks are needed, IT shall enable those services to ensure expedience in delivery and integrity of data delivery.
  3. No employee shall willingly quarter malicious material on devices. If workers want to root or jailbreak to experiment with a cool new app or some OS-level optimization, the device is unable to accept corporate data until it is back in compliance.
  4. Device privacy shall be respected by IT. Yes, MDM and security tools give IT a look at device activity, but IT is not reading emails, texts or other personal material. I always balk at this EMM because if IT wanted, they could have been reading our emails for years now — but they don’t. With MDM, they can’t, and still this wild conspiracy permeates the cube farm.
  5. Mobile security is not a witch-hunt or an indictment on how employees spend their free time in the wide world of apps. Personal information remains off the table in mobile freedom.
  6. In light of a breach, theft or toddler who will only be calmed down by tapping away on your tablet, employees should expect a speedy lock, block, selective wipe or reset of the device to keep data safe.
  7. There is one set of rules governing acceptable mobile use and data delivery. A recent study titled “Why Is App Security Escaping Development?” showed 40 percent of in-house-developed apps are leaving the enterprise without the most basic security. This is an effort to stay competitive and meet the harsh deadlines necessitated by our new global economy. It will also prove foolhardy as black hats become more aware of these sieves in the corporate data structure.
  8. Excessive bailing on enrollment in mobile security programs shall not be coddled by IT. Yes, mobile security apps take up space on a phone or tablet. But not only is it worth it for the enterprise, it’s vital.
  9. IT enablement is just beginning and shows no signs of ending. If anything, it’s growing larger. Employees have simply gained new freedoms with device selection; the true business enablement of this world is squarely on the shoulders of IT and security teams.
  10. Mobile device and data access requires us all to think a little more wisely. Departments, work groups and individual workers should not seek out IT for every little issue with a phone glitch or tablet phantom turn-off. At a certain point, we all need to understand what is business and what is personal on our home screens. IT should not be charged with helping employees access their July Fourth barbecue pictures, just as an employee should never be given a Wi-Fi password on a sticky note and told, “Good luck.”

 

SPOILER ALERT COMIC BOOK POCAST WEEK OF JUNE 10 – AIRBOY 1, SECRET WARS, MIDNIGHTER 1 & More

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robbughomealone

A brief divergence this week from the usual Ain’t It Cool News Spoiler Alert review crew Podcast. Without our excelsior producer, JD, Mark Miller (aka Ambush Bug) and I gab endlessly about THE COVENANT #1, GROOT #1, MIDNIGHTER #1, AMAZING SPIDER-MAN: RENEW YOUR VOWS #1, BROKEN WORLD #1, OMEGA MEN #1, SECRET WAR #1, & AIRBOY #1! This week, we slathered on that sweet, sweet jack@$$ery extra thick free of charge!

or

Download with right click magic

DC Comics U? What are YOU?

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For anyone who is a reporter of true prowess and magnitude, the news of DC Comics answer to refreshen their stale 3 year old sub-brand of “New 52″ with the effervescent “DC YOU,” might have slipped past all the real news in your inbox. It’s OK, this is all I have and I could merely raise the following vitriol. I know none of this really matters, since comics are only here to feed movies and this might as well be an org chart box naming exercise as much as a story firebrand, but again…this is all I am allowed to report on.

Starfire, DC YOU

Mom bloggers begin rejoicing, Daddy weeps alone.

Actually, the New 52 sub-brand might still be in play. I am not an organizational dynamics expert so I can’t completely crack the lexicon of this new initiative. What’s confusing is that not all books will be YOUthenized. Actually only 10 (right now) are being given a new YOU shampoo and restyle. However, a schedule of what looks like 52ish books makes me wonder if any of the outlier titles will remain New 52 brand. Again, I can tell this new You of kinda 52 is divided by story type, creator bucket and some other parsing to merely exacerbate the chief critique DC receives for being a splintered universe. Fix a problem by exacerbating it. No, that’s silly? Right?

What this New You The new universe is an homage too has also died, making it a resonance brand, but not one with good resonance. New 52 was stilted by corporate interests after FINAL CRISIS folly and then strangled to death from Multiversity inconsequentiality. Young, dumb and love to punch is the experimentation du jour form marketing budget, while quality story is ignored and relegated to have asshats like guys who call themselves Optimous Docuhe cover them. Earth One, I’m sorry for me.

Those who know my desire to make the world rich while still being hippies…ish know that I don’t balk at dollar aspirations or corporations fervor to get at more money through marketing. I can however gladly balk at my own kin in marketing who have woefully misjudged the comic audience. Don’t think a sing songy rhyming has worked in wooing me since I was in the crib. Comic readers should be feared. The weapon we wield is really the operative word of my saber rattling last sentence…we’re reader.

New 52, DC YOU, Morrison Magical Moo…call it what you want, none of it is an alluring or enticing factor to shift. I gave you a chance before gang and New 52 ultimately meant nothing, It was so permeable, a movie strategy shift made it waft away after three years.

Three years. Think about the past permanence and ongoing commitment to serial storytelling we had prior:

Cool pic bro. a 32nd Robin is even cooler.

Cool pic bro. a 32nd Robin is even cooler.

1938-1961: The universe was like a metal sheet, but suffocating with too much reality of time passage to necessitate a schism of Earth 2

1961-1986: A warm, down blanket, keeping the universe contained and nicely percolating at a good timing temperature of  pace for managed growth and serial gravitas.

1986 – 199ish: Here we debate the sort Zero Hour changes. I am pro so I add them. On the Rebootometer though it is a .5 of change.

1990’s- 2011: Another good stretch, but let’s be honest in saying permanence was gone. We received a few universes in this time that would quietly quit and then try to be a schizophrenic with a new direction and vaguely apologetic excuse for the shift.

2011 – 2015: New 52 says bonjour.

2015: New 52 bids adieu, but at least we now know it was just marketing spew.

Why do I keep collecting comics? I’m delusional and I believe my voice matters. The things I say appearing on page and in media months later is probably just zeitgeist, but since I can’t be sure I persevere. I helped make comics what I want, but I realize now they need help with ones controlling the budget dollars. It’s scary in the big machine of business, but it is traversable and can be reasoned with if you speak the right language.

New 52 was a bad idea, bred of desire to keep some tether to comic commitment in the face of a brand brigade wanting to take over. We all get that now. I learned, but I don’t think the people steering the ship have. DC YOU JUST COMPLICATED AND FRACTURED THE LANDSCAPE MORE. YOUR COMPETITION IS DOUBLING DOWN ON SOLIDARITY OF STORY.

I don’t recommend attacking competition directly, but I also don’t ever turn down proven success either.

Let’s try a new scheme and phrasing mantra, a less schizo model of representing the rise of heroes. Also, it rhymes so it must be good. Ready.

JUST BE, DC
#JustBeDC

Avengers of Mobile Security…Uhhh…ARRRGRAGATE!!!!

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A little business blog homage I conjured this week. The words are mine, the pictures are the work of my bosom buddy in the graphics group (name upon request).

AVENGERS OF MOBILE SECURITY

  • When dastardly devices of mobility carelessly connect to WiFi!
  • When miscreant malware moles its way into network systems, lying in wait for a surreptitious subterranean attack!
  • When corporate documents are uploaded unknowingly to open file share sites by daft digital denizens!
  • When access to work productivity apps is assaulted by pitiful user experience and security sink holes!

CALL IN THE AVENGERS OF ENTERPRISE MOBILITY MANAGEMENT AND SECURITY AND EFFICIENCY AND TRANSPARENCY AND ANY “ENCY” YOU NEED TO TRUST SMARTPHONES AND TABLETS

Together, they harness IT best practices for data and device security, on a cloud more scalable and secure than Asgard (Note: encryption is used in many cases of mobile security versus Rainbow Bridges).

Tune-in true believers, MARVEL as the mobile avengers:

Hulk mobile security avengerSMASH Hulking Headaches of Mobile Deployment

Launching tablets and smartphones good. Giving access to wifi, email, files, apps with no agree to mobile security bad. No encryption means data not safe. No management of what connects to who and where bad. EMM must not be slow, not expensive, and not burden to IT with cloud architecture.

Hammer Away at Content on the Fly

thor mobile security avenger Ye lightening strikes of innovation rarely happen in the confines of darkened office halls. Nay, innovation will striketh over hill, mountain, or in shower. Giveth easy and secure content management to all of your kingdoms and business units. Mobile content management can oversee all sharing permissions, while imbuing security features down to the document level (including “cut & paste” trickery to move data into other apps).

Armor-Up in the Cloud

iron man mobile security avenger Adding new devices, operating systems, functionality, access controls and transaction level security requires new suits of armor for IT to deflect against system slowdowns and complete work stoppage (when content can’t be accessed on devices of choice). There are many suits to choose from in mobile protection today; from a separate workspace for transitory employees in healthcare, full device management for a clean-sweep of all (or some) data, to microscopic ant-size locks on apps, transaction and data on the fly.

Smart money says to use a common heads up display with one Enterprise Mobility Management centrifuge for every piece of functionality you need as you infuse more mobile into business operations. Sitting on a cloud frame also means powering-up in minutes, as opposed to the wait for a hellicarrier full of equipment to deploy.

Shield Against Bad Apps & Malware

capt america mobile security avenger Mobile threat management is the newest shield slung directly at mobile malware’s underbelly. Alerts activate proactive security policies to keep bad data quarantined and the device off the network. Next level defense is happening now with SDK’s for in-house app development security, brining in developers to join the data captains of CISOs and IT enablement.

For those just joining the fray with a low arsenal of devices to support, mobile app management and a corporate app store are good training grounds in a controlled mobile state.

Slip into Intranets and Content Repositories Faster

black widow mobile security avenger No one wants to mash their way into the data they need for business, especially not when access to SharePoint, file shares and intranets can be made native in feel and function regardless of manufacturer or operating system.

With mobile gateways and secure web browsing, seamless moves can be made into almost any system where your employees find what they need quickly, quietly and with graceful ease.

Ready to become a mobile avenger? Visit our TOWER OF POWERFUL RESOURCES ready to arm you with videos, white papers, webinars and a free trial to empower your mobile security.

ASK ROB RETURNS: The Rise and Fall of Superheroes

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A college student looking for thesis quotes recently tapped into my comic knowledge and over opinionated word salad with these comic book conundrums:

  1. Do you believe the current influx of comic movies or superhero genre films is a fad or something that will continue for the unseeable future. If you think it will continue, do you believe the films continue to adapt over time, fitting the culture and evolving?
  2. Why do you think comic properties are suddenly becoming so popular and profitable?

rob-patey-sad-faceGreat Questions Little Fella,

The superhero has already become passé as we see from the struggle in the big two comic companies to support ongoing continuity of story and character. The Bible never reached issue 900, because as we saw from modern day Jesus, Superman, when a comic becomes that long in tooth the character must change. For the uninformed, Action comics 900 was bemoaned because Superman essentially said America could no longer be his chief interest when the world is so connected. 

While logical, this does break the very foundation of a character who was inspired to give us hope in the face of a great oppressor. In a world where terror reigns supreme, and our greatest fears are the unexpected, a mind reader serves as amore soothing balm than some man in his underwear willy-nilly scouting the skies for danger.

Even the Marvel characters, the baby-boomer contribution to Americana’s new titans, are feeling the buckle of age with their first reboot of time (after many undeclared ones over the years). What was once the hip and cool comic choice with; super-keen Spider-Man, groovy X-men and happening Hell’s Kitchen characters, and awesome Avengers are no longer needed when Nerds are now cool, different is now the norm and the powerful are the object of envy as opposed to inspiration. 

justice-league-new-52

Do collars change the hero?

Superheroes are like zombies, vampires and every other blip on the radar of our existence, a coping mechanism. The cape arose as religion waned throughout the 20th century, to supplant our saviors and inspire the now watered-down term, “hope.” 

These super legends will wane, because if you transform too much, the metamorphosis births them anew regardless of branding.

As for delivery to the masses and a superhero summer movie schedule in the foreseeable future, what do you consider that time period to be? The marvel machine is scheduled into the 2020’s. When the X-Wing flies into a portal and crashes eon Graymalkin lane. hell they could go into the 2030’s. Then Warner Brothers needs to do their half-hearted competitive attempt at thwarting that revenue stream. They will throw at least a trilogy into the fray and given their slow dev times, those movies will chug past the teen years of this new millennium. 

On question two, Superhero movies have taken over the cinema, simply because of technology. For years I have tried to make others see a comic book come alive as I did when I was four and bought my first Richie Rich. Panels, words, images flow seamlessly and scream alive in the minds of comic readers; those of us who also read books and see the world come alive. 

Mormon-polygamy

Example of people with no imagination.

As a being who lives in imagination more than Jackie Paper’s friend Puff; words, images and movies are all the same experience for me. My mind is so jacked, I literally have a movie screen playing all day in my head.  Some, actually many people, can not take the same figurative leaps of imbuing life into story. For the spoon-fed of this world, the stories we have read for years needed computer graphics for the telling. Look at early CG, like the 90s Fantastic Four movies, and tell me if it was at all believable (even in the context of the time). Then look at the Fox attempt a decade later, with better graphics and you tell me which is more immersive and plausible. 

Fantasy is a hard aesthetic distance for many to cross, they keep it at arm’s length because it can never be. For those individuals, superhero movies are new and finally of interest. They are a crutch into a genre that would have been impenetrable when the stories were first coming alive on the page.  

 

Observations of a Verbose Voyeur: Happy or Desperate Hour

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I love the smartphone. I am a writer, so that means I am also a voyeur who dissects the language of the human condition by almost creepy levels of staring. And then being a judgmental prick. The smartphone has gotten me 200% less yelled at and threatened as long as I observe with eyes slightly down.

My wife has been voraciously sick with Mexiflu acquired on our recent vacation to the Swiss alps. Just kidding…we went to Mexico. Anyway, to find good variety for dinner and to satiate the cravings of the sick, I am stuck waiting for take out at a tex mex happy hour.

HOW THE HELL IS THIS OVAL TROUGH OF DESPERATION AND REGRET HAPPY?

Booze…

But beyond that, it’s desperation leaning upon liquored-up desperation. Two negatives ALWAYS equal a positive kids…no…not with people. That’s a formula for simply a hot mess.

Desperate Hour’s Most Dangerous Predator! Charlie Air Hustle 

My target for dissection and further scrutiny in some piece later, is Charlie Air Hustle. This Air Jordan wearing Lathario of a personality as silky as his breathable shorts, is honed in on two YaYa sisters looking for their Stella. But they are white ladies and not that attractive or interesting – so Stella without the sex, and more money laundering.
I’ve seen Charlie’s action before. He is a fascinating creature of side buzzed cut hair delicately placed wispy upon his lip.
First move is most fascinating. Facts that aren’t facts, like Michael J Fox filming all of MASK before anyone realized he was too short to work with Cher. Wait. He wasn’t even that clever. He said some shit about stereo equipment and smoky the fact he was a man and could speak was all that was necessary for these lonely vessels of recent divorce.

Next move – pics. Being tall as fuck, I could see. Now I can’t unsee this tool with whip cream in his naval trailing off out of frame.

My food arrives, like a smarmy clockwork Air Hustle enters into his C zone (closing, get your head out of the gutter). He slides away the scumbag sundae pics to begin hostage negotiations. If these ladies can invest in his…whatever the hell…I couldn’t follow and clearly I was the only one trying. It was something like Amway, but with more layers. One lady took out a check book, one passed…I know who I think the winner is, but I don’t want to judge. Well, I will judge eventually, but not today.

Ladies, we men are simple. Charm. Intelligence. Attractiveness. Big big motivators for us. If you ever think that this guy is too good looking for the level of interest he’s giving, and the little you two have in common, trust your gut. If you want to pay for love and attention, cool, but just skip the theatrics and start with a price.

Sigh…humans…

CONVERGENCE #0 REVIEW: Finally Feeling the Fangeezer Love

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CONVERGENCE 0 COVER CONVERGENCE #0
Writers: Dan Jurgens & Tom King
Artist: Ethan VanSciver
Publisher: DC
Reviewer: Rob Patey (aka Optimous Douche, Ain’t It Cool News)

Thank you DC. I show my appreciation to creative teams constantly for melting the cockles of my heart, but I can’t think of any time I was truly moved by the simple inception of a series from a publisher. For the impatient the plot is thankfully simple, Superman of Earth prime is in the hands of Brainiac. Brainiac is an urban kleptomaniac. He’s also more addicted to puzzles than mental wards, and what a grand puzzle Superman’s infinite deaths and infinite triumphs across time and quantum strings would be to unlock for a creature always seeing the most logical patterns as its purpose.

Like the New Gods and Apokolips are constructs capable of navigating the cytoplasmic bleed between universes (see GODHEAD in GREEN LANTERN), Brainiac plays the same tricks, but ups the ante against their Godly travel beams and hover chairs to add time into his malicious of city abduction: “What’s the plan Brain?” “Not to just capture cities in a bottle, but to capture the zenith of all cities in all universes in…all…time…periods to examine what makes the idea of Superman so unyieldingly pervasive he is always spared the final fate before being born anew.

“Sounds Meta Optimous, didn’t you bitch slap ULTRA comics and every other issue of MULTIVERSITY for such 4th wall faux pas?’ Indeed, and CONVERGENCE made me realize that my disdain for the Morrison Meta versus Jurgens doesn’t stem from too far of an aesthetic distance, but frankly one that is too close. I love story. I know real life never seems to allow the story world in. From mermaids to UFOs, most of the mystical in this world stems from myopia and booze. The meta here is not breaking my 4th wall that I know can’t be, it’s breaking the 4th wall for my favorite characters. Which makes sense since SUPERMAN not Rob Patey can and has done everything. It’s a story about deconstruction, not a fucking pamphlet chiding me for seeing through the complete fucking deconstruction of heroics and then getting pissed at me for complaining the rebuild looks like the same shit from before. CONVERGENCE is apologizing in a sense for the New 52 forgetting to change for the sake of comics, instead of in fear response to Marvel studios.

MULTIVERSITY is ambitious, especially for one man. The scope of CONVERGENCE with 3D universe movement and 4D time travel would be career suicide for only writer. And I’m not talking the whole series; I mean Jurgens was wise to get King at his side for the extra pages sans any ads in just this issue.

So that’s it, in glorious and intimately character rich, but also epic in scope storytelling. A compendium in the back shows where Brainiac the mainframe has been telling his green screen dummy terminal clients of cunning to swipe cities from, but most of us have seen the checklists already to suss out the timeframes of occupying the new universe of Pax Brainiac.

Now let’s get meta ourselves for a second to see what could be next.It says the worlds are in a contest to see which survive, I buy it for the 3 as yet unannounced titles adding to the already announced Fanciful 49. I’ll take it, and honestly no longer complain about a chunk of the shelf being prostituted to new media and parent company interest. The fight is futile, and as much as I want a DC Universe brimming with a ton of Elseworlds, I will satisfy myself with restitution over a satisfying end to my comic youth. It’s infinitely healthier than petulantly pining because my desire can not bend the will of billion dollar companies. It’s in part also really really delusional.

Part of my peace is from seeing Jurgens, THE writer of my youth, a man who could so subtly weave together wisps of continuity from tale-to-tale to reward the OCD, but never deliver references so obtuse that new readers would get a real nosebleed from the metaphorical cross-sell. This unique talent of Dan’s has been wasted in the New 52 until now. You don’t give a man who used to Check Mate great stories on a three tier Star Trek chess board one flat fucking checkerboard from CVS. And if you do erroneously put Dan on just one book, you make sure it is an exploration of every quintessential moment in DC history like CONVERGENCE.

CONVERGENCE is also the first book in ages truly for comic fans with cosmic consequence. We need stories ripping apart and past the linear. Comic reader imagination is more acute than the average bear who only sees comic movies. This curse to bend the boundaries of danger, has put us to a point where the stories of city, state and even nation are simply too myopic in scope to really affect us. We have seen our own cities under fire at this point, which means comics, to meet their thrill schill of brand, frankly need to raze fucking everything from the God particle flashing until the final Kelvin of entropy hits zero across all stars.

Before I bid adieu, I must take a moment of art awe. Beauty bleeds off every page from the grandiose all knowing Brainiac mainframe belittling a much oddly older looking Superman Prime (how do I know earth designate for taunt Superman, high collar and doll part articulation points is how I know), to the moments of sincere reaching out Superman delivers to an ever changing by comic epoch Vril Dox. Another part of the Van Sciver allure for me is that I believe he’s the hardest working man drawing comics right now. Anyone who professes a desire to paint comic pictures for a living needs to hit a con and witness the exhaustive pace VS performs at to be granted A-list titles. It takes more than talent folks to turn a job into a career, dependability and desire can sometimes help balance a less deft hand’s chances. I have stood afar more than once over the years on show floors watching Ethan multitask like a 12 year old who lost their Adderall, graciously greet an fan who walks up to the table and never relent from producing new pages or commissions. I stand at a distance because I swear a lot and his kids are usually with him. I’m not a stalker, just a guy who marvels at that which he can’t do and will never ever taint kids if I can help it. The magic of youth, like the magic of comics seems to fade with each passing year as commercialization makes cynicism a core attribute.

I care about Jurgens (though he is ironically one of the last comic writers I have yet to personally kibitz with), I care about VS, I care about DC and I God dam right care about comics breaking the boundaries of convention as much as opening day blockbuster projections. CONVERGENCE is the first series in so long who also seems to give a shit about me. Thank you again Dan, truly.

It’s Us Not the Media that is the Problem 

The news isn’t all bad today, it’s merely all pervasive. 

We choose to imbibe the streams of tragedy with each page we like, share or follow.

 This world has always sucked we simply have more cameras to cover  it, and more people we are willing to pay to dispense it. 

It is our leisure time That remains the enemy of our true happiness above all else. An exponential monster of pleasure and pain that devours as it satiates our hunger for more of nothing. 

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