Category Archives: Dear Rob Advice

ASK ROB RETURNS: The Rise and Fall of Superheroes

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. 


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. 


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

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.



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.


Dear Rob Advice: Comic Marketing, 3rd World, Maturing Taste

Ask Dear Rob Here are just some of the people I’ve helped already! Submit your questions in the comments or via email – because this is the face of caring!


Dear Rob,

As you can see from my most recent post, one of my Facebook friends is looking to contract the G+ virus, probably thinking he’s getting back at Google for having such a shitty social network. 

How do I delicately explain that I would instead have to ride him bareback and take our budding bromance to the next level?

Great Question Jesse,
First let me do some level setting for our non-comic brethren in the audience.

DEATH SENTENCE is a comic being released tomorrow by Titan Comics. The premise of the book is set square on the shoulders of the fear of AIDS in the early 80’s before RENT made AIDS cool.

GPLUS VIRUSThe virus in DEATH SENTENCE is called G+. Now, while AIDS just kills you, G+ actually grants you superhuman abilities as you shuffle lose your mortal coil. So instead of getting weaker and all bruisey, you could learn to fly or gain super strength….etc…you get the picture.

So not only do the world governments need to deal with the population dying off (because people just can’t stop fucking), but also some major collateral damage as well.

A little more ground setting: When reviewers are sent books they are often accompanied by letters that the PR pray we will simply cut & paste on our media outlet. It’s a way to level set, issue embargo dates and hopefully control the message. I never read them.

With DEATH SENTENCE though, Titian cleverly made the PR letter your very own test results coming back negative for the disease (at least mine was negative). In 7 years of reviewing I’ve received thousands of these letters, but have proudly never read one all the way to the end. This one though, I read start to finish. That’s the panacea of marketing folks and Titan should be commended.

As for your friend who wants to get the virus, you should explain to him this is merely fiction. If he won’t relent, show him your AIDS bruises and ask if it still looks cool. If he believes your AIDS bruises are the start of your super power camouflage you really have no other choice but to bend him over and give him what he asks for.

Or, you could let him read your preview of the book and hope he doesn’t think it’s a history book. If he does believe it’s a piece of actual history the world is better off without him wouldn’t you agree?


Dear Ann Landers: Scratch that. Dear Rob:

We just visited a 3rd world country and I’m sure I know what a 1st world country is. Is there a 2nd world country and where is that? Also, is there a 4th, 5th,etc. countries? Would your father enjoy vacationing in one of these?

Great Question Uncle Keith,
The categorization of countries actually goes all the way to a 100th world experience. This of course is judged solely by Americans for Americans with Bob Patey being the main arbitrator in times of disagreement.

According to the Bob Patey Scale:

2nd world countries: England – the TV is shit because they talk to fast and don’t kill and or screw enough things, the meat is boiled and the accommodations are tiny.

Sweden…Denmark…France…you know what let’s just say Europe. Pretty much because of TV and food.

bob-heaven3rd World Countries: Obviously as you know all too well and we heard about in length would be St. Kits because of the copious amounts of chickens.

Other include Singapore because of the smell, Australia because of the flight time and anywhere in the American Midwest.

100th World Countries: Anything in South America, he won’t even go. Also the moon would count.

As for what my Father enjoys, you can’t judge by his mouth. His discerning eye for quality would find something to complain about if he was sitting in a kiddie pool of his favorite ice cream with a 200 inch 3-D TV in front of me while he was being waited on and serviced by every Barker Beauty from the Price is Right.

If I had to guess the ice cream would be too fucking cold and the naked blondes keep walking in front of the TV.


Dear Rob:

I find that as I get older, my tastes in entertainment have changed and matured as well. While I was never big in hardcore “gangsta” rap as a child, I was an aficianado of hip-hop, and the like. 

(Then came Metallica’s “Enter Sandman”…)

Back to the point: what causes a person to apprieciate things that seem outside their circle of influence? I used to find the sophomoric antics of SOUTH PARK hilarious, but now prefer the more urbane wit and humor of JEEVES AND WOOSTER. Is there a reasoning behind this, or am I turning into an old man?

Great Question Leo,
Popular theories from leading brain institutes believe that the human mind does not reach full maturation until our late twenties or early thirties (for men this is believed mid 40s).

lost-saucerGiven this, just as you found Mr. Rogers insipid in your twenties, what enticed you a generation ago will no longer compute into your more evolved cerebellum.

Nostalgia will allow you to look at the entertainment of yore with a fond remembrance and a brief chuckle, but as for being truly entertaining….nay. That time has passed.

Except Lost Saucer with Jim Nabors and Ruth Buzzy – that shit is the bomb yo

Dear Rob Advice – Rainbows Edition

1146506_10151595136021149_2082735482_nHere are just some of the people I’ve helped already! Submit your questions in the comments or via email – because this is the face of caring!


Dear Rob,
Cate asked What do rainbows smell like?

Great Question Christine,
And I’m glad more people are forwarding the questions of little people that aren’t quite humans yet. These small individuals have much knowledge to gain if they hope to be real people.

Rainbows smell like the death of innocence.

crying-toddlerGeneral Mills and Muppets will try to tell us that Rainbows are magical things that will make frog’s sing and Irish cereal trustworthy and delicious. We all know frogs don’t sing and the irish are most famous for famine and Sinead O’ Conner.

Rainbows as you draw closer simply disappear. However, lets assume one could get close enough to sniff a rainbow.

It would smell exactly like the weather pattern that brought it in. Your region’s weather patterns come in from the west, so your rainbows will smell like weed, corn, weed again, hicks and probably rust.

Where we live we’re most affected by Noreasters – our rainbows smell like cocaine and illegal immigrants.

I hope this helps. If you would like to know what the rainbows smell like in your region simply #ASKROB.


Dear Rob,
This is a 3 part question. How are rainbows created? Where do they end? And is there gold at the end?

Great Question Paul,
But I thought you were an #ASKSROB super-fan, or at least a power user of the Robotron 3000.

A few days ago Cate asked what rainbows smell like. Through that discussion, of course we explored the creation of rainbows. I’ll truncate for expedience.

“Rainbows as you draw closer simply disappear. However, lets assume one could get close enough to sniff a rainbow. 

It would smell exactly like the weather pattern that brought it in. Your region’s weather patterns come in from the west, so your rainbows will smell like weed, corn, weed again, hicks and probably rust.  I hope this helps. If you would like to know what the rainbows smell like in your region simply #ASKROB

Sadly no one has yet asked me to sniff their weather.

Now, I’ll tell you a little secret I kept from Cate, since it’s best all children believe magic is dead so as they don’t grow up delusional.

Rainbows are actually the blood of slain unicorns. Each night the forces of Ava Ri’ Tok and Eldoth Nor’ battle upon the plain of ethers. This has been an endless battle waging before the great I Am.

The Ava Ri’ fight to save last the last bastions of hope and innocence aboard their majestical white Unicorns of fiery flaxen hair.

unicorn warSadly they look much better than they fight. The Helldogs of the Eldorth essentially rip out the throats of the Unicorns as their masters bash those sissy Ava’s upside their stupid overly vouley heads.

Sadly innocence and hope are losing the battle more and more at an exponential rate each year. Hippy liberals will tell you more rainbows because of more volatile weather patterns. Poppy cock, more Unicorns die as the invading forces begin to reach the top of Mount Transcendence.

Rainbows end in the anus of the Eldroth’s demi-God Walsallow. Walsallow gathers all hope in his anus and converts it into more evil forces.

Stupid Ava Ri never stood a chance.

Oh, the pot of Gold. That’s actually a Unicorn brain. It’s cool about the mix up though, the Irish used the shit as currency for years. They look kinda similar…if you’re drunk before you even wake up.

Dear Rob Advice – Food 2 Farts, Bad Tippers, Mormonism

Ask Dear Rob Here are just some of the people I’ve helped already! Submit your questions in the comments or via email – because this is the face of caring!

Dear Rob,
Why do our farts not smell like the delicious food we eat?

human-digestionGreat Question Dave,
Our farts smell different than the food we eat because most successful human machines actually process the food rather than just having an esophagus and an asshole with nothing in between.

Our farts are truly reflective of our self. As food makes its majestic journey it touches all facets of our insides. This is why baby poop is cute and the poop of the elderly smells reflective of their closeness to death. Never huff the ass of someone over 12…I mean 60.



Dear Rob
Why don’t people tip well?! Some occasionally do, some tip me with compliments (which is helpful for my bills!) some think I do this for fun not money. What do I need to do to get better tips?!?

Great Question Jen,
And there are a couple reasons for this. Is the food and or service shit? Both will greatly diminish the tip.

If you answer no and no, then the answers get more subtle.

tippingRemember, another name for a tip is a gratuity, as in a thank you for going above and beyond the call of duty. Service is just part of the dining experience. You are in theory getting a salary for being there and waiting on people, so a gratuity comes if the customer has a reason to be truly thankful for the experience.

Carly and I both waited tables so we get it. We always tip even if the waiter is a flaming fucking asshole. It’s 10% but we still tip the douche bag, because we both know you have to or should be claiming that supposed money for taxes. I remember I walked out of a job when they wanted me to start claiming 12% because they were getting audited for tax shenanigans. I said the day I get a 12% tip in this troth for hicks I might actually consider doing it.

Restaurants have it figured out man, pay slave wages and pass all else on to the consumer – great business model.

So why don’t some people tip. I honestly think they expect their food to be slopped on the table by someone as part of the meal cost.They basically don’t put themselves in someone’s shoes whose base is $3.75 an hour.


Dear Rob,
So Mormonism, what up with that? How does one achieve a planet of their own?

Great Question Matt,
I call Mormonism the pragmatic religion. There’s not enough boys, OK time to double up. Sorry, hope it won’t be forever ladies.

To do this though, they had to create a new mythology that would let it be all good before God. But really all they did was copy from other texts…

Golden Plates = Stone Tablets

Jesus in America = Jesus Anywhere

Journey across America = journey across Egypt

Planet = Your own cloud

Mormon-polygamyI don’t have a problem with anyone’s religion. You find solace and meaning from something then roll with it. Just don’t try to convert anyone and make sure you don’t ever confuse the metaphorical for actual.

As for Mormonism, just another temple to the ultimate of question of why. As far as i know no one has gotten it yet from anyplace but the self.

Dear Rob Advice – Best Comic Movie, Superman III, The Dark Knight, Marvel/DC Collide

1146506_10151595136021149_2082735482_nHere are just some of the people I’ve helped already! Submit your questions in the comments or via email – because this is the face of caring!


Dear Rob,
Your favorite comic book movie & why?

Great Question Alex,

The amount of love and care for the genres of comics and movies bleeds off of every frame.

superman-superdrunkIt also covered all the bases of life: alcoholism, psychotic break downs, skiing both literally and metaphorically (sniff sniff) and then there were the other cast members aside from Richard Pryor.

Also, this was the one when they realized Margot Kidder was really a transgender that only had long hair so they actually got Supes a love interest with female reproductive parts.

Second favorite, Supergirl (on mute without pants on).


Dear Rob, 
Can you answer my question with your actual favorite comic book movie? I know it’s not the #ASKSROB way, but I would like to know.

Great Question Alex,
And honestly I kind of did with SUPERMAN III. I read so many comics each week, the movies are more about the experience than the movies themselves.

Honestly, with every comic movie I can point out scene-by-scene where it was done in comics…and always better.

My mind makes everything move in a comic, brings the pages to cinematic life. So when I sit in the movies even the tits crazy ones like AVENGERS I still ind of go, “meh…”

Jokers-Nicholson-LedgerSUPERMAN III was one of the many times, and one of the best, where Bob Patey and laughed our asses for two straight hours MST3King the shit out of the horrible acting and plot. Other notable favorites were SUPERMAN IV and GODFATHER III.

If i had to pick though, a comic movie I’ll watch any time it comes on, it’s a tie between BATMAN the original and BATMAN THE DARK KNIGHT. I love the joker, both Ledger and Nicholson in their ways captured the embodiment of insanity for two different generations.

There…serious enough for you?


marvel-dc-superman-spiderman-crossoverDear Rob,
Ok, a semi-serious one this time: of all the inter-company crossovers that Marvel/DC have done over the years, which was the best example?

Great Question Leo,
They all fucking suck. They distill the charters down to basic tropes and ride that one trick trip pony to hokey town.

JLA/Avengers by Busiek is the one I find tolerable, merely because Busiek is such a brilliant writer.