Tag Archives: comics

Review: Ant-Man – You’ll believe a man can shrink

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Ant-Man is the latest installment into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It’s about Scott Lang as he becomes the new Ant-Man, but his troubled past catches up with him when he plots a heist with an older inventor bent on saving the world from certain destruction, so this time his criminal skills are put to good use.
This film is directed by Peyton Reed with a screenplay from Edgar Wright & Joe Cornish and Adam McKay & Paul Rudd. The film stars Rudd (as Scott Lang), Evangeline Lilly, Corey Stoll, Bobby Cannavale, Michael Pena, Tip Harris, Anthony Mackie, Wood Harris, Judy Greer, David Dastmalchian, and Michael Douglas.

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Review: Daredevil – no Affleck here…

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Daredevil premiered on Netflix last week. Took me a while to get more than one episode in, but I’m liking it. For those who don’t know, Daredevil is about a blind lawyer named Matt Murdock (played by Charlie Cox) who lives in Hell’s Kitchen in New York. When he’s not practicing law he’s keeping the city safe by beating up bad guys.

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Photos of Day 3 of WonderCon

The final set of photos are now up!  Which costume was your favorite?

Day 2 Photos of WonderCon

As promised Day 2 photos, so many things to see!  Day 3 photos coming soon!

Superman Grounded

Superman Grounded

I just finished reading the trade paper backs of the Superman Grounded story line.  It follows the New Krypton story arc, written by J. Michael Straczynski and then finished off by Chris Roberson, with art from Eddy Barrows.

After being on New Krypton for so long (a year or so) Superman returns to Earth, he feels he’s lost touch with his adoptive planet, so in order to reconnect he literally walks across America.  He goes to; Philadelphia, Detroit, Ohio, Indiana, Chicago, Des Moines, Nebraska, Colorado, Utah, Las Vegas, Oregon, Seattle.  Along the way he meets the ordinary/everyday man on his journey he destroys a drug house, helps reinvigorate a town rundown by the closure of a factory, and finds a place in society for a stranded alien race.  Superman also does feats that are more personal; he puts a stop to domestic violence, instills confidence to an inner city child, and rescues people from natural disasters.  In the end his self doubt is dispelled and he inspires people to do good.

 

I get the idea behind this more “down to Earth” story, after spending most of the previous year on the planet of New Krypton it’s as if Superman has abandoned his adoptive home, Earth.  But to carry this story for twelve issues?  The point of the story is realized after the first two issues, the following issues felt like they were beating a dead horse.

Another problem with this story arc is the premise – Superman wants to connect with the common man – isn’t that what Clark Kent is for??  Think about it, Superman has the powers and flies above humans, Clark Kent has a day job, an apartment, and wife… Clark Kent “grounds” Superman.  Clark Kent has been absent from the Superman titles for way too long, it’s been more than a year.  After New Krypton Superman wants to reconnet with the people of Earth… so go back to your day job as Clark Kent, reporter for the Daily Planet.  This sentiment is echoed by the podcasters on From Crisis to Crisis: A Superman PodcastGrounded feels like Superman’s attempt at the Green Lantern/Green Arrow: Hard Traveling Heroes run with Denny O’Neil and Neal Adams in the 70s.  But Green Lantern and Green Arrow aren’t Superman, they rode around in a pick up truck, while Superman walks the Earth, like Caine from Kung-Fu, but seems more like Forrest Gump, Superman can fly… it’s one of his main appeals, let him fly, Clark Kent is the one that should be connecting to the common man.

For the Grounded story arc’s purposes people should look to back issues like Superman 59, or anything pre-Death in 1991 (as much as people shun the 90s in comics).  But don’t get me wrong, there are nuggets of good things in Grounded.  One of them are the references that they make to the now old continuity, Under A Yellow Sun for instance, they flat out refer to the novel that Clark Kent wrote, that’s awesome.  The John Byrne mini-series, The Man of Steel, gets a nod too, they mention Magpie, something all the way from 1987.  I love when comics do that, but sadly this era is gone and we are starting anew.

The small moments are what I really remember.  Bringing Superman back to his roots, fighting for the underdog, is a great idea.  Meeting the average joe on the streets or at their home, the subplot with domestic violence is great, Eddy Barrows draws a very angry Superman.   Looking back, I didn’t care for the Superman Squad issue, we get it that Superman inspires others.  I’m a fan of Stracyznski so I really wanted to like this, I may have set my standards too high, I got to talk to him about Superman: Earth One, which is the reason he left Grounded – to concentrate on Earth One, and he said the second volume of Earth One was a lot of fun to write.  I sure hope so, cause to combine two things I like sounds like a good idea, but Grounded doesn’t do it for me.

Green Lantern: The Animated Series

The Green Lantern: The Animated Series debuted this weekend.  For those who are unfamiliar with the Tales of the Green Lantern, here’s a short snap shot – fearless test pilot Hal Jordan is chosen by the ring of a dying Green Lantern to be the first human inducted in to the Green Lantern Corps.  The Corps is comprised of beings throughout the universe that are chosen because they have the ability to overcome great fear.  They maintain order in their sector of the galaxy, in short, intergalactic cops.  The Guardians of the Universe are their “bosses” who are the oldest beings in creation, and have designed the GL Ring to be the most powerful weapon in the universe.  It allows its bearer to create anything that their mind can will in to existence.

Here’s the short of what happened in the hour long pilot episode; Hal (voiced by Josh keaton) is testing a jet for Ferris Aircraft when an earthquake happens, he loses the jet to save a train.  Carol Ferris gets mad at him, he promises to make it up to her with a dinner date, but then his ring calls him to OA.  Hal transforms in to Green Lantern and is space bound.  He’s being reprimanded by the Guardian council when a GL Ring flies in, it’s the ring of a now dead Frontier Lantern.  Who are they?  The Guardians give a quick explanation and dismiss the hearing.  Ganthet shows Kilowog (voiced by Kevin Michael Richardson) and Hal this experimental spaceship that’s got artificial intelligence and a power battery.  Hal and Kilowog then “borrow” the ship and go in search of what killed the Frontier Lantern.

They discover that there are Red Lanterns and they combat them while saving Shyir Rev (voiced by Kurtwood Smith), another Frontier Lantern, from certain death.  Returning the wounded Shyir to his home planet they’ve accidentally led the Red Lanterns to this peaceful colony planet.  The Red Lantern leader, Atrocitus (voiced by Jonathan Adams), sends down a probe that will destroy the planet unless the inhabitants hand of the Green Lanterns.  A valiant fight is fought that ends with *SPOILER* Shyir’s death and Kilowog saving the inhabitants.

The AI ship along piloted by Hal and Kilowog have a captured Red Lantern named Razer.  They set out to find more Red Lanterns in the cosmos.

The good; the fight scenes were great, once they started going.  This being mainly a kids’ cartoon, it got a lot more violent that I thought it would.  Much like The Clone Wars of late, so that was surprisingly unexpected.  The sound effects are great and the use of constructs really complimented the excellent sound.  Having Kurtwood Smith voice a GL was a nice treat, almost casting against type for me, but it worked.

Shyir’s death caught me by complete surprise, I mean – it’s a cartoon for kids, they would find a way out, but nope, they didn’t.  And what’s more, they brought in Kilowog’s backstory, which you’d only know from reading the comics.  That was a great emotional moment coupled with a nod to the comics, wonderful.

The action – once the fighting and combat started, they had some nice sequences.

The bad; Hal goes in to space way too quickly, and it seems like the whole series will be space bound.  Which I’m not too keen on.  The whole relate-ability to a character will be gone.  It should be about Hal trying to balance his day job with his romantic interest in Carol coupled with space emergencies and Coast City dangers.

This is just the pilot episode, but it looks like we’re losing the who secret identity thing, which to me is a kid’s fantasy, to be completely passed as having no impact in anything, while actually saving the world.  With the Green Lantern you not only have that but you also have the will to create anything you can imagine, which is essential for growing kids where they play in their imagination almost everyday.

From a production standpoint I see why they went in to space though, space is easy to animate, and when they land in a “combat zone” it’s usually rocks and desert like.  For some reason the animation still looked flat to me, overly simple and not detailed.  Which makes me think that Hal will spend all his time as GL in space fights.

One more thing, and this is way too nitpicky, but they really really simplified Hal’s hair.  Much like Superman, Hal has a certain hair style.  Which makes me think that they’re going for a medium between the comics and Ryan Reynolds

Overall, I will have to give this a couple more episodes before an official verdict is rendered.  But for now, I’m leaning toward passing on this series.  It needs to decide what it wants to be.  Go all the way like Justice League Unlimited with the serious aspects or go for tongue and cheek the way of Batman: The Brave and The Bold.

 

 

 

 

Long Beach Comic Con & Horror Con This Weekend!

Long Beach Comic Con is happening this weekend! Tickets are still on sale. Individual days are $25, and the 2 day weekend pass is $45 (savings of $5).

There will be a special Robot Chicken panel on Saturday at 3:00 pm. Co-creators/executive producers/directors/writers Seth Green and Matthew Senreich, executive producer/head writer Tom Root, actor/writer Breckin Meyer and writers Erik Weiner and Matt Beans are scheduled to be present in the panel. A Q&A, clips from upcoming episodes of season 5 (DVD on sale 10/25, a sneak preview of the exciting next steps for the hit series are some things you should expect to see.

For all you Simpsons fan, there’s going to be a Simpsons Treehouse of Horror panel. Jane Wiedlin (The Go-Gos), Tom Hodges (Clone Wars) and Bill Morrison (The Simpsons) will talk about Jane and Tom’s Treehouse of Horror story. The panel will be on Saturday in Room 103A at 11:00 AM, followed by a signing at the Golden Apple booth.
Other guests include Iron Man 3 director Shane Black, legendary filmmaker John Carpenter, and the entire cast of The Guild.

Full Program Schedule can be found here

For more information including tickets and parking can be found at the Long Beach Comic Con website

Elvira, Mistress of the Dark, No More! Comikaze Expo is Her Final Convention Appearance

That’s right, after November 6th, Elvira, the Mistress of the Dark, will no longer be making convention appearances. Comikaze Expo, at the Los Angeles Convention Center, will mark the last convention appearance of Elvira, Mistress of the Dark. As the official “spooksperson” of Comikaze Expo, Elvira (aka Cassandra Peterson) will sign autographs, pose for photos with fans and take part in various events throughout the Expo.

Elvira became a household name as the host of Elvira’s Movie Macabre, the first nationally syndicated horror movie show. The weekly series featured the sexy, outrageous movie hostess’ sharp wit and clever banter throughout her tongue-in-cheek commentary of B-movie classics. Her reign as ‘Queen of Halloween’ spans three decades and includes two feature films, her long-running series and two motion control rides. Her appearance at Comikaze Expo solidifies the event’s commitment to horror fans and promises to be a memorable experience for all.

Comikaze Expo is the largest multimedia pop culture convention in Los Angeles. This unique event brings together the best in comics, gaming, horror, sci-fi, fantasy, anime and all other cult programming. Comikaze takes place November 5-6 at the Los Angeles Convention Center, and offers a slate of innovative programming, panels, contests and other activities that provide fans access to their favorite artists and creators in this adventure-packed weekend. The event will kick off with an appearance by the father of modern comics, Stan Lee, at the event’s ribbon-cutting ceremony.

 

Tickets are already on sale for an awesome price of $12 and kids under 12 get in for free. Please go to the official Comikaze Expo page for additional information and a full list of scheduled guests and events.

 


Twelve bucks for a convention ticket isn’t gonna break the bank. Heck, parking usually costs that much. I’m quite excited to see what this convention will offer and how fun it will be. Come back for more information as the con draws near.

Comikaze Expo is Coming to Los Angeles on November 5 and 6.

Comikaze Expo is Los Angeles’ first and only large-scale, multi-media pop culture convention. Guests of honor include legendary comic book created Stan Lee, and Elvira, Mistress of the Dark. Additionally, there will be star-studded panels with artists, writers and creators and cast reunions from Nickelodeon’s All That and the Police Academy movies.

Comikaze also boasts independent film screenings, live shows, celebrity appearances, fan contests, games, portfolio reviews and even a masquerade ball. Expect this expo to be a bit different than your regular comic convention, as Comikaze seems to focus more on the community and culture.

Find more information on their website.

Tickets are only $12, but if you want discounted tickets, you can purchase them off of Goldstar.

WonderCon 2012 Moves to Anaheim, CA

On March 16 to the 18th 2012, Anaheim, CA is getting a new tenant and its WonderCon!  Traditionally in San Francisco, Wondercon finds itself having to either cancel the show or move due to renovation at San Francisco’s Moscone Center.  In reaction to WonderCon announcement, ReedPop’s C2E2, which has been waiting to announce dates for its own show in March 2012, will now seek alternative dates while Wizard World has announced that it will postpone its April 2012 Anaheim show to help alleviate an overcrowded calendar.

“It certainly was not our wish to move,” commented David Glanzer, director of marketing and public relations for the nonprofit event. “However, when faced with the prospect of canceling the show for a year or moving locations, after careful consideration we decided to keep WonderCon on the 2012 calendar at a venue that could accommodate our needs.”

Though I am a bit sad to know they had to move, I am happier to know that its moved significantly closer to home

For more information go to WonderCon Home page

Heroes in a Half Shell Return to Comics

IDW today announced Kevin Eastman returns to the franchise he helped started, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.  Originally conceived by Eastman and Peter Laird in 1984 as a one-off parody, it ballooned into a cultural phenomenon, that includes multiple television series, four featured films, numerous video games, and a wide range of toys and merchandise.  Being a kid in the 80’s you couldn’t help but be a part of turtle power!

Imagine my surprise to hear that Eastman had returned to his beloved franchise, after selling off his stake in the franchise in 2000, and will be co-writing, doing page layouts and providing variant covers.  He will be assisted with his co-writer, Tom Waltz (Silent Hill: Past Life, Infestation: Outbreak) and art work by newcomer Dan Duncan.  The first two issues will feature covers by Walter Simonson and Sam Keith, while Fred Hembeck will take on issues 3 through 5 with homage’s to the classic covers.  Eastman himself will help provide some variant covers.  The comics itself is a reboot of the franchise that features new storylines that they hope to bring to millions of fans.

I will be the first to admit however that I haven’t read much of the comics growing up,  I remember my cousin had the first volume and we would read it and was completely fascinated with it but that was decades ago.  The cartoon was iconic growing up and probably helped sell a ton of pizza in the process.

However one wonders does being away for over 10+ years take away any of the edge?  Only time can tell but here’s hoping to a legion of new and returning fans of the “Heroes in a Half Shell.”

TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES #1 ($3.99, 32 pages, full color) is now available in comic stores throughout North America.

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