Controversial! Fun And Also Games! First Comic Book related blog to be featured in the Australian National Library's Pandora archive. Pop culture, music, film and comic book expert. Available to hire for public speaking, lectures, writing and almost anything else.
Four time Rondo Award nominee. Author of several books and hundreds of articles.
Proudly annoying people for sixteen years now.
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Superman & The 'Toberoff Timeline'
Much has been made of the so called 'Toberoff Timeline', a series of documents that were allegedly stolen from the law offices of Marc Toberoff in 2006, by a lawyer named David Michaels, who was working for Toberoff at the time, and duly sent to the lawyers acting for D.C. Comics in their Superman case. The documents came complee with a "cover letter, written in the form of a
timeline, outlining in detail Toberoff's alleged master plan to capture
Superman for himself, " which led to allegations that Toberoff had interfered with negotiations between DC and Joanne Siegel with the view of securing the Superman copyright for his own gains. The direct result of the Timeline was DC Comics filing suit against Toberoff, and that suit is still running today, as is the original 2004 Siegel v DC Comics lawsuit.
D.C. Comics gave the allegedly stolen documents over to an outside attorney and began a quest to obtain them through discovery. No matter what DC Comics did or said Toberoff refused to hand them over, saying the documents were protected by attorney-client privilege because they involved communication with the heirs, however, as anyone who has followed both cases will know, Toberoff has claimed attorney-client privilege on virtually every document that DC has sought to introduce, be they part of the Timeline or otherwise. In 2008 a magistrate made a ruling which saw some of the documents, including the covering letter, introduced into the Superman trial, this ruling and discovery led to DC filing their suit against Toberoff in 2008.
Despite the theft happening in 2006, it took until DC filed suit in 2010 for Toberoff to report the theft to the U.S. Attorney's Office. This action resulted in Toberoff supplying complete, unredacted, copies of the documents to a grand jury and as they were introduced into a court, DC moved for access to the same documents. Toberoff naturally resisted this action, leading to this appeal. This time the appeal has gone against Toberoff, and the most interesting aspect of the appeal ruling is the courts overview on Toberoff's business practices. In a scathing critique of Toberoff the appellate panel stated that, "Having set his sights on Superman, Toberoff approached the heirs with an offer to manage pre-existing litigation over the rights Siegel and Shuster had ceded to D.C. Comics. He also claimed that he would arrange for a new Superman film to be produced. To pursue these goals, Toberoff created a joint venture between the heirs and an entity he owned. Toberoff served as both a business advisor and an attorney for that venture. The ethical and professional concerns raised by Toberoff's actions will likely occur to many readers, but they are not before this court." Read into that what you will.
What this ruling does mean is the Superman case, now entering it's eight year, appears to have no ending in sight any-time soon.
The final judgement has been handed down in the long running Gary Friedrich vs Marvel (Ghost Rider) case, and now we know the full amount that Friedrich owes Marvel. That's right, Marvel, a company that stands to make millions of dollars from the upcoming Ghost Rider II movie, and is paying Nicholas Cage millions to portray a character that Friedrich created, now wants money from Friedrich - in specific $17,000. And they'd like that $17,000 now, please. In full.
This stipulation has been agreed upon and so ordered by the court, with the final judgement reflecting all that contained within. This now means that Gary Friedrich has the right to appeal, and appeal he shall, but it also means that he now owes Marvel Comics, a multi-million dollar making machine, backed by the multi-billion dollar Disney company, $17,000 and cannot ever sell anything related to Ghost Rider, nor can he even say that he created Ghost Rider for any form of gain or advertising. Well done Marvel!! …
Was Yogi Bear gay or not? It's this kind of thing that keeps me wide awake in the middle of the night, clutching at the quilt, drowning in sweat and wishing that the ghosts inside of my head would just flee and leave me be. But they don't, so I instantly turn my thoughts into other realms.
Now, Yogi. On the surface of things he appears to be a normal bear. In the historical context of things he's just a cheap copy of Art Carney's Ed Norton (actually the Honeymooners was stolen better by Warner Brothers for their cartoon series featuring mice - Ralphy boy and his neighbour Martin).
Yogi used to hang around a place called Jellystone National Park and was, for the most part, obsessed by picnic baskets. Like a demented homeless person he relentlessly stalked people, slept on park benches, probably urinated in public, harassed people and stole whatever food and anything else that he could reach. All the time he was pursued by two people, the first being the anal retentive Ra…
Be warned - read this, take note and learn the easy way - we've learnt this lesson the hard way.
As people who read this stuff on some form of a regular basis might be aware we're off to New York in just over a month. Three weeks in New York, one week in San Fransisco. The key, for us anyway, is booking some decent accommodation, so we decided that, as we're going to be in New York for three weeks solid, that we'd go for a serviced apartment over a hotel room. So we started looking on the proper web-sites for places until we found one. Great location, it does exist, great photos - the lot. Perfect for our needs. The other half made contact with the 'owner' via the web-site and made arrangements to pay. We were asked to pay via MoneyGram, no biggie and no alarm bells started to ring - we've not done this before and all seemed normal. We made the first payment and got an email back from the 'owner' saying he'd gotten the payment and could we fix th…