Tag Archives: Justice League

Hero Express: ‘Black Panther’ Rumors & Bad News For ‘Justice League’?

Welcome back to the Hero Express, your one-stop sometimes SPOILER filled shop through the top stories in superhero comic based Film & TV news!

X-Men Days of Future Past

Bryan Singer uses Twitter to preview Beast and to fool.

I am not usually one who likes April Fool’s Day, but I did get a good laugh out of this “casting announcement”. Like in our last installment of Hero Express, Singer uses Twitter often to let fans in behind the scenes, including casting  news. So it wasn’t out of the realm of possibility that he’d cast Lady Gaga as the Dazzler, but let’s be honest, it was a sigh of relief when realized it was a prank.

Thankfully it appears as if all joking is over as he later tweeted out this picture.

X-Men, Superhero

Beast is looking pretty good! Nicholas Hoult (Warm Bodies) is set to reprise his role as the younger Kelsey Grammer/Hank McCoy/Beast, but its still unclear if this is simply a makeup test, a concept pic or the actual look of Hoult as Beast.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier

What’s that about Black Widow?

Oh, you heard correctly, Black Widow has been confirmed by Marvel as a part of The Winter Soldier. Not only that but Samuel L. Jackson’s Nick Fury also has a relatively substantial role in the film. Marvel was very chatty about the new Captain America movie and released info on Robert Redford’s role as……

superhero

Alexander Pierce!

A S.H.I.E.L.D Agent himself, Pierce works alongside  Nick Fury in what will amazingly enough be the first time Redford and Jackson have starred in a movie together. In the EW article it is said that he has been pulled back in to “help run” the agency.

As if all that wasn’t enough, they kindly gave us a glimpse behind the scenes with Chris Evans as Captain America and his trusty shield.

superhero

Marvel’s Black Panther

No, really, it’s a thing now.

First it was Ant-Man and Doctor Strange. Now its Black Panther. At this rate Marvel is going to be announcing movies about Auric and Silver Fox or another somewhat obscure superhero any day now. There isn’t much out there about the Black Panther project that’s been hinted at for an eternity (about as long as Ant-Man) but earlier today Morris Chestnut tweeted that “It’s time to get familiar with the Black Panther character!” which included a picture of the Black Panther comic.

Later in the day he responded to someone who everyone needs to maybe hold their horses a bit because –

I’m guessing maybe Marvel got a little touchy about this because now both tweets have been taken down as has the link on his Facebook page. Of course that’s all it took because now we are all talking about Black Panther! Well done Mr. Chestnut, well done.

Speaking of Doctor Strange, he’s got a director now. Well, a rumored director at least. The Latino Review (sadly this is not the first time I’ll mention them) are keeping at their somewhat amazing ability to sniff out rumors and are saying that Evil Dead‘s director Fede Alavarez is slated to helm Doctor Strange. Of course just rumor for now so we’ll have to see if it sticks around. There a lot of time between now and Doctor Strange’s scheduled premier in 2016.

Guardians of the Galaxy

From ballet slippers to “green skinned humanoid”

THR is reporting that the star of the hit movie Center Stage, Zoe Saldana, is in talks to join Guardians of the Galaxy. Okay, so she’s had a few roles since Center Stage, not the least of which would be Star Trek and Avatar (small little art films, maybe you can find them on Netflix), but she’ll always be that little ballet star wannabe to me.

superhero, guardians of the galaxy

If things progress like people think they will, Saldana will be joining Chris Pratt and Dave Bautista in the 2014 movie. Who will she play? Well, it’d be none other than “The Most Dangerous Woman in the Universe”, Gamora. All they need now is Groot and Rocket Raccoon and the Guardians will be set.

Justice League

Will someone please make this happen?

Seriously universe, outside of The Dark Knight trilogy, DC fans haven’t had much to brag on when it comes to big box office summer blockbusters. Would it kill you to let the pieces fall into place for the Justice League movie? Would it?

Apparently it would.

Once again, The Latino Review is behind the rumor that the Justice League movie is derailing. El Mayimbe joined the SchmoesKnows podcast and gave them the bad news.

It was one thing when they said Christian Bale wasn’t going to be Batman, that I can live with. I can even live with Christopher Nolan not being involved at all. Part of me was even okay with Ben Affleck directing. But it just seems that with each passing day, it becomes more apparent that this is never going to happen, no matter how much we want it to.

Excuse me as I go find a beer to cry into.

The Flashpoint Paradox

C. Thomas Howell goes from cop to comic bad guy.

Finally some non-Marvel news that’s good news!

That’s right, Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox production is moving along and none other than SouthLAnd actor C. Thomas Howell is voicing Professor Zoom/Reverse-Flash. We already knew quite a few of the other voices, including Vanessa Marshall as Wonder Woman and Ron Perlman as Slade Wilson but there hasn’t been any word on who play the voice of Flash yet. It is set for DVD/Bluray/Digital Download release on July 30th, 2013.

Superhero

Of course it would be wrong to mention Flash without paying tribute to the man behind the superhero, Carmine Infantino, who passed away on April 5th. A man who did great things for the DC Universe, such as being one of the guiding hands behind the Silver Age of DC Comics, he leaves behind a legacy that is not soon to be forgotten.

That about does it for this edition of Hero Express! Let us know what you think of these stories in the comments and we’ll see ya next time!

Justice League Animated Hits Netflix; Here Are Our Top 10 Episodes

Justice League has arrived on Netflix Streaming.

Just this week, Netflix Streaming rolled out a ton of animated, geeky goodness, including the likes of Regular Show, Adventure Time, Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated, Archer, Batman Beyond, Batman: The Brave and the Bold, Powerpuff Girls, Problem Solverz, Dexter’s Lab, Foster’s Home, Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy, Venture Brothers . . .

And, most significantly for the superhero-obsessed, the recent Justice League animated series. Both of ’em — Justice League, which focuses on the big seven (Superman, Green Lantern, Flash, Wonder Woman, Martian Manhunter, the Flash, and Hawkgirl) and Justice League Unlimited (JLU), which brings in DC Comics heroes by the truckload.

Continue reading Justice League Animated Hits Netflix; Here Are Our Top 10 Episodes

Hero Express: Spidey’s New Suit, Nolan Producing ‘Justice League’, & Matthew Vaughn on ‘Fantastic Four’!

Welcome back to the Hero Express, your one-stop sometimes SPOILER filled shop through the top stories in comic based Film & TV news!

The Amazing Spider-Man 2

Chris Cooper as Osborn, Marc Webb Reveals Set Photos, and the New Spidey Suit!

Horse whisperer – check. Homicidal closeted gay man – check. Traitorous spy – check. Orchid poacher – check.

What on earth is left for Chris Cooper to play? Apparently it’s Norman Osborn, aka The Green Goblin.

Chris Cooper as Norman Osborne

Cooper will join Jamie Foxx as Electro and Paul Giamatti as Rhino as they tackle Spider-Man (Andrew Garfield, of course) in the upcoming sequel. Will Cooper’s Green Goblin be on par with Willem Dafoe’s from Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man? That will be difficult as Dafoe plays the unhinged supervillain so well, but if anyone is up to the task, it would be Chris Cooper.

If you follow no one else on twitter (besides Grizzly Bomb of course), make sure you follow The Amazing Spider-Man 2‘s director, Marc Webb. He’s been tweeting photos from the set everyday and it’s always fun to get a look behind the scenes, and commentary from the director isn’t too shabby. Yesterday he sent out a picture of an upended car on top of a crushed cab… Rhino’s handiwork? [Ed. Note: I’ve included a shot of Shailene Woodley as MJ from the set. No reason.]

Marc Webb set photos

Shailene Woodley on the movie set of 'The Amazing Spider-Man 2' in NYC

In addition to the day to day photos, some pics of the new Spider-Man suit have been released. Now you aren’t going to make everyone happy, and there were quite a few people displeased with the suit in the first film of this trilogy, but I like this one. The eyes look great, much better than the first attempt.

hero-express-amazing spider-man-2-new-costume

Now that filming is underway, I’m sure there will be plenty more in the way of news and such from The Amazing Spider-Man 2 so stay tuned!

Justice League

Christopher Nolan is Allegedly Producing with Zack Snyder Possibly Directing, and Christian Bale Might be Batman! But Probably Not.

christopher_nolan2I can not be the only person who feels like this movie has been in the works for decades now and with every passing day comes another rumor only to be shot down the following day. At this rate, my grandchildren might get to see a Justice League movie, but only if they are lucky.

The latest of these rumors was that Christian Bale was going to be returning as the Dark Knight, but that has been apparently dismissed. However, it was confirmed that Christopher Nolan is involved in some capacity, most likely as a producer. Also a producer is Man of Steel director Zack Snyder and there are hints that he might be directing Justice League as well.

Of course the biggest statement in the ComicBookMovie report is that we will probably not be getting much Justice League news until after Man of Steel is released on June 14th of this year. What that really means is we won’t be getting any “official” information but if it’s like anything else in the internet age, we’ll know plenty. It may not be completely factual but we will know it!

Fantastic Four

Vampire Hunter Scribe Takes a Stab at the Script, And a Producer is Named!

AbrahamLincolnVampireHunter

What do Pride and Prejudice, zombies, Abraham Lincoln, vampires, and Mr. Fantastic have in common? Well, thanks to the Fantastic Four reboot, Seth Grahame-Smith. He’s taken on the task of “polishing” the script and one can only hope that means this reboot will be much better than Rise of the Silver Surfer because I think we can all agree, that is a movie that just needs to be forgotten about, for all eternity. Burned from the annals of geek history. Grahame-Smith wrote the screenplay to last year’s Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Killer based on his novel of the same title (he also wrote the incredibly popular Pride and Prejudice and Zombies) and the Johnny Depp vampire movie, Dark Shadows. Also of note, he is the writer of the hopefully upcoming Beetlejuice 2.

hero-express-matthew-vaughn-fantastic-four

Matthew Vaughn has been announced as the producer of  the FF reboot, directed by Josh Trank. Vaughn is obviously no stranger to the geek world with a resume including Kick-Ass and X-Men: First Class, so I think we can rest easy knowing that the Fantastic Four family will be treated right.

Speaking of Matthew Vaughn and X-Men…

X-Men: Days of Future Past

Peter Dinklage, Richard Nixon, and Halle Berry!

Ever since Game of Thrones (and the movie Station Agent,  that everyone should see) actor Peter Dinklage was announced for X-Men: Days of Future Past, there has been speculation as to who he would be playing. Now it appears as if there’s a character emerging from the rumors as a front-runner.

[quote]But thanks to a tipster who prefers to remain anonymous, but is extremely reliable, we can tentatively confirm: Dinklage is playing Bolivar Trask, inventor of the mutant hunting robot Sentinels in the movie sequel. -MTV[/quote]

Obviously fans have been waiting for the Sentinels to feature into the story for a long time, and Peter Dinklage as any character in the world is fine with me.

Peter Dinklage and Bolivar Trask

While that is fun news, it’s still technically a rumor so it could easily change. However, director Bryan Singer has said that there is one person we are sure to see in Days of Future Past and that is none other than the 37th President himself, Richard Nixon. Apparently part of the movie is based in the ’70s, and Singer has promised that Tricky Dick has a role in the story. If I have no other reason to watch this movie, it will be to see how Richard Nixon factors into the X-Men universe.

Also official? Halle Berry is returning as Storm. Is there really much more to say on that besides an underwhelmed “that’s good, I guess, for her, maybe?”

Didn’t think so.

That about does it for this edition of Hero Express! Let us know what you think of these stories in the comments and we’ll see ya next time!

JGL Might Play Batman in ‘Justice League’? Sources Say No…

Yeah, I know. That is clearly a picture of JGL as Nightwing and not Batman. Sorry, but I’ve been waiting a while to use that fan-made picture, so deal with it. I also know that I got your hopes up with the title only to immediately shatter them afterwards. You are not alone in this feeling. Earlier in the week some rumors started to fly that Joseph Gordon-Levitt would don the cape and cowl to portray Batman in Warner Bros. upcoming Justice League. Now I use the term upcoming very loosely, because we have all been through this before with a Justice League movie so I’m not putting too much stock into it getting made anytime soon.

Continue reading JGL Might Play Batman in ‘Justice League’? Sources Say No…

Hero Express: Hammer To Play Batman, Silver Samurai on Set, & RED 2 Set Photos!

Welcome back to the Hero Express, your one-stop sometimes SPOILER filled shop through the top five stories in comic based Film & TV news!

Armie Hammer Likely to play New Justice League’s Batman

This interestingly enough isn’t the first time he has been in the running for the role. The last time there was a Justice League film project Hammer was again preferred for the part. Even though that project fell through WB’s still feel he would be the best to play the part of DC’s JL Batman. I believe with this choice that WB’s wants a different style of batman than has been displayed recently in Bales performances. What I mean is that with Batman needing to fight side by side with other superheroes that this time around the character will have to be more of a team player.

I haven’t seen a great deal of Hammers work except for his role in The Social Network so I can’t say how well he would take on the legendary role. However he will be starring in the upcoming Lone Ranger remake coming out next year, and so we should be able to find a good understanding of his acting abilities under a mask of sorts.

News via [Digital Spy]

Silver Samurai, Viper and More Wolverine Images Revealed on Set

First off is a sneaky image of Silver Samurai where to get a good look you have to zoom in a bit, still it looks interesting and the design seems to be based strongly off the comics but we will have to see the front before full judgement. Next we have an image of Svetlana Khodchenkova (That’s a mouth full) playing Viper a rather complicated character from the comics and should be interesting to see how they use her in this film.  Lastly we have some stunt photos of Wolverine with claws out and on stunt wires; he is however a stunt double as you can tell it’s not Hugh Jackman.

Images via [Collider]

New and Recurring Cast of RED 2 on Set

The cast of RED returning to set for the upcoming sequel and we have some new cast members as well. So who can we see new from these pictures. First off Catherine Zeta-Jones getting into a car with Bruce Willis with Willis not looking happy (wouldn’t be my reaction). We also have David Thewlis playing The Frog (not sure what that means yet) who is doing plenty of stunts on a motor bike. We also get a good look at the returning cast with Bruce Willis, John Malkovich and Mary-Louise Parker.

The Latest synopsis for RED 2:

“The sequel to the action-comedy hit RED, which reunites our team of retired CIA operatives as they use their old-school style to take on a new set of enemies all across Europe.” The film is being directed by Dean Parisot (“Galaxy Quest”) and will star: Bruce Willis, John Malkovich, Hellen Mirren, Catherine Zeta-Jones, David Thewlis, and Mary-Louise Parker.”

Images and Plot via [Collider]

The Oldboy Remake Synopsis and Josh Brolin on set

The Oldboy remake staring Josh Brolin has recently had some set photos leaked of Brolin on set with and without a shirt on, granted there’s nothing shocking about that but it does prove that it’s on track to be released next year. We also have the latest synopsis for the remake and it does shed some light on how this American remake of a popular South Korean film will play out. There has been some concerns over how this remake will be made, however I haven’t seen the original and plan to this weekend.

The latest synopsis for Oldboy remake:

“Spike Lee helms this remake of Park Chan-wook’s grim tale of a man who seeks revenge against his mysterious captors, who held him imprisoned for 15 years. Josh Brolin stars, with Thor’s Mark Protosevich adapting the script.”

Images via [Collider]

Shailene Woodley Likely to play MJ Watson in the Amazing Spider-Man 2

Shailene Woodley Playing Spiderman’s new love interest Mary Jane is a little shocking. I really wouldn’t have picked her from other options for May Jane but Webb probably knows what he is doing in the cast roles, what with casting Emma Stone and Andrew Garfield. Shailene Woodley maybe an unusual choice for the role of the feisty Mary Jane but will most likely display a greater acting ability than the previous Jane played by Kristen Dunst (her see through tops where pretty good though). This isn’t all the news though in terms of new characters for The Amazing Spider-Man sequel.

We have also got confirmation from the studio that the sequel will have Harry Osborn involved and Electro set to be the main villain. The studios have started looking for cast members to fill the roles of both the villains to Spider-Man’s world. Electro is an interesting choice for the main villain since he has never been on the big screen before and is a weird character to base a film around if he is indeed the main villain. One last thing I would like to say is that my prediction for the way this series is going is looking more and more likely. Osborn will be introduced in this film and will then be the Green Goblin in the third film killing Gwen in the last scene (totally called this!).

News via [Super Hero Hype]

Hero Express: Iron Man 3 Armors, Mark Millar Joins Fox, & Ben Affleck Still Says No To Justice League!

Welcome back to the Hero Express, your one-stop sometimes SPOILER filled shop through the top five stories in comic based Film & TV news!

Iron Man 3 Shows Mark VIII On Set In Miami

Robert Downey Jr. may have injured his ankle during shooting, but Shane Blacks Iron Man 3 is still pushing ahead. Not sure if Robert is back at shooting but his new suit certainly is. The new Mark VIII suit made its debut at this year’s Comic-Con and was met with mixed opinions. I wasn’t a fan originally but it has grown on me a bit since then and I would like to see this suit in action. Where’s the trailer at already, Marvel?

The blue suit to right is apparently not the Iron Patriot like we originally thought but instead is allegedly going to be Rhodey’s new War Machine armor. We mainly think this because of the clear US Air Force insignia stamped on the side of the new armor. I do not like the fact that the War Machine armor is almost exactly the same in appearance to the Iron Man suit! I think it will get confusing in a fast fight scene with them flying through the skies with explosions left, right, and center.

Images via [Collider]

Mark Millar To Take Control Over Fox’s Marvel Films

What a prestigious role to play with such a well-respected film company. Congratulations Mark. Oh by the way I am clapping slowly. Not shocking that Fox decided to do this since Marvel made billions on The Avengers and then got director Joss Whedon to helm their Marvel Cinematic Universe for Phase Two.  So Fox wants their remaining Marvel properties to work a little more coherently under the watchful eye of Mr Millar. Nothing wrong with that, though I’d prefer if they would just give them back to Marvel. That’s clearly not going to happen so they might as well try and make them good.

Mark Millar has a rich history with comics and to be honest he is a smart choice to oversee Fox’s comic films. His most noticeable works are The Authority, The Ultimates, Marvel Knights Spider-Man, Ultimate Fantastic Four, Civil War, Wanted, and Kick-Ass. In August 2007, he also won the Stan Lee award at Wizardworld in Chicago. He has the right background and so we will have to just wait and see what impact his involvement in the next Fox films will be. Fingers crossed its good.

These are Mark Millar’s words on taking the job:

“I really like the Fox team, love this bold new direction they have for their franchises and am proud to be working alongside some of modern cinema’s biggest talents. James Mangold is incredible, Matthew Vaughn’s one of my closest pals, and Josh Trank gave us, in my opinion, one of the greatest superhero movies of the last decade with Chronicle. The invitation to join this crew was maybe the coolest phone call I’ve ever had,” Millar said with characteristic understatement in a statement accompanying the announcement. Describing his new role as a “dream gig,” he continued, “I spent 10 years working at Marvel and am really happy with the work I did on the comic side of things, so the idea of working with these characters now in a brand new medium is enormously exciting for me.”

Interview via [Comic Alliance]

Ben Affleck Still Says No To Directing A Justice League Film

Talking to MTV, Ben Affleck has explained that he doesn’t want to direct any Justice League movie and he doesn’t understand where the rumors started. He never suggested to anyone he wanted the part or that he was approached for the directing role by Warner Bros. So in his defense the theory kind of came out of nowhere and I find it funny that he has to explain that point from now on.

These are his words about the suggested directing role:

“What happens is that there’s a lot of bloggers and Internet interest around superhero movies, so there’s regularly a rumor that comes up, obviously [with regard to] ‘Justice League’ once ‘Avengers’ happened they think, ‘Well it would be crazy not to make “Justice League,”‘ and I’m sure they will. I guess I should be flattered, and I’m sure it will be cool. I’ve seen some of the stuff from the new Superman movie and that stuff is awesome. I think they took a really cool, real approach to Superman, which no one has done before, so if that trend continues I’m sure ‘Justice League’ will be great.”

The reason that he won’t be involved, he says, is that he finds that he doesn’t really care to work on superhero movies at the moment, thanks to his experience with Fox’s Daredevil in 2003. But that he may work on a superheroes film in the future:

“I had a negative experience with the one comic book I liked, it was just a movie that didn’t work… It’s such a shame because first of all ‘Daredevil’ [is] a great book, great idea and then right after that they figured out that it was better to make the movies good and then they started making them cool and investing in them. I felt like I was in the 1930s with that outfit, the trousers: ‘Hey chum, hold up there! This fella’s trying to rob a bank!’ It was a drag but I did love it as a kid and they’re rebooting it.”

News via [Comics Alliance]

Captain America Looking for a Female Lead

Captain America is going into production early next year, but they still haven’t picked a female lead. The new lead is going to be a romantic interest to Steve Rogers, and although fans may know that Sharon Carter would be a safe bet as she is the niece of Steve Rogers Wartime love Peggy Carter. The real question though is who will play the role of the Captain’s new love interest.

The short list so far appears to include Jessica Brown Findlay (Downton Abbey), Emilia Clarke (Game of Thrones), Teresa Palmer (I Am Number Four), Imogen Poots (Fright Night) and Alison Brie (Community). They do appear to have got a mixed group of women for the role which makes for endless speculation. I think with Alison Brie having already worked with the directors of this film that she has a strong chance of getting the role, not to mention the draw she would bring from the loyal fans of Community (Yeah, she’s HOT!). But that’s just my theory as the casting could go to any of these ladies, to be honest they have all done some very interesting work and I am sure they would do a great job.

Why wouldn’t we put this picture up?

News via [Coming Soon]

Patrick Stewart Possibly Returning to X-Men

Rumors of a fourth X-Men film have been floating around the nerd vine for a while after X-Men: The Last Stand nearly destroyed the franchise. What a terrible film. The separate X-Men films First Class and Wolverine put us more at doubt that a fourth film would get made, but that they would continue the other independent X-Men stories. Well it might be more likely to happen now that Patrick Stewart teased us with a reply to a fan at the Montreal Comic Con this year.

SuperHeroHype reports:

At the 2012 Montreal Comic Convention, he was asked by a fan about returning to the series and he replied “I think there is every possibility” and then began to say the names of his female co-stars “Halle Berry! Famke Janssen! Rebecca Stamos! Anna Paquin!” Stewart then said, “yes, I’ll be reprising…”

Yes, he could just be messing with us. Yes, he might just be saying that he’d like to be in an X-Men film again. But with the sequel to First Class titled X-Men: Days of Future Past there might be a chance for him to reprise his role as present Professor and play along side his younger counterpart, which I would love to see and is perfectly possible in the time travel story line of Days of Future Past.

That’s it for this week!

Comic Rack: Avengers Lineup Grows, Marvel NOW Teasers Baffle Me, & Superman’s H’el on Earth

Welcome to Comic Rack! My pick of the top five comic news stories in no particular order…

DC New 52 Resets All First Appearances

For a while now, fans have been asking DC just exactly what the new timeline in the NewDCu is, and how it’ll directly unfold. This month, a bevy of “Zero” issues came out, all meant to explain, or give origins to the current DC lineup. Included in these issues is a series of “Who’s Who” listings, giving out character information, backstories, and of course, listing their first appearances. Way back when, for Superman, this would have said Action Comics #1, it now lists Justice League #1 (2011).

via [The Source]

[This] marks the release of the first week of DC Comics’ #0 issues. Each of these special issues is filled with everything from secrets to revelations to origin stories. These will both explain what happened before the launch of DC COMICS-THE NEW 52 last summer, as well as plant seeds for future story arcs!

If you’ve already picked up your #0 issues today, you’ve probably noticed that in the back of each book (and now online!) is a Who’s Who entry on a major character in DC COMICS-THE NEW 52. These pages share information such as each character’s first appearance, base of operations, powers, history, and other appearances. Below, check out the list of which character is being spotlighted on each of this week’s releases and be sure to click on their names to read up on who they are!

via [Newsarama]

DC Comics has a new take on their classic “Who’s Who” listings, giving basic details on their characters, teams and concepts. Power Sets, basic origin stories, current affiliations and recent appearances are all included, as they were in the old “Who’s Who” sets. For example, Superman’s entry in Action Comics #0 looks like this:

First Appearance:

Justice League #1 (2011)

Base of Operations:

Metropolis

Powers:

Under a yellow sun Superman is extraordinarily strong in addition to being nearly invulnerable. He can run and fly at incredible speeds and possesses other abilities such as super-hearing, heat vision, x-ray vision, and much more!

Other Appearances:

Batman: The Dark Knight #5-7

Swamp Thing #1

Supergirl #1-3

O.M.A.C. #7

History:

As the planet Krypton exploded and a civilization died, baby Kal-El was rocketed to safety by his parents…

Well, at least they’re committed to going whole hog, and saying that yep, they’re all brand new, and their first appearances were in the books we labeled as #1. Deal with it. I know there’s probably still some old DC fans out there who are hurt, or feel betrayed, or just plain don’t like the New 52. Frankly, I think they ought just get used to it, or keep reading their old stuff. Clearly the New 52 is here to stay, and we just have to hope that everything can be as interesting and cool as Animal Man, Swamp Thing, or Batman.

New Avengers Lineup Grows In Numbers!

Marvel NOW! expands the roster of the Avengers, as lead scribe Jonathan Hickman teases Marvel fans with the full list of Avengers. When will they assemble? WHEN?

via [Newsarama]

Three interlocking covers for Avengers #1-#3 show all six of the movie Avengers — Captain America, Iron Man, Thor, Hulk, Black Widow and Hawkeye — plus Brian Michael Bendis-era additions Spider-Man, Wolverine and Spider-Woman; along with frequent team members Captain Marvel (Carol Danvers) and Falcon.

New to the squad is Cannonball of the New Mutants, along with two unconfirmed characters: One that looks Human Torch-esque (Johnny Storm? Jim Hammond? Or perhaps a slightly tweaked look for Cannonball’s New Mutant buddy Sunspot? [This has since been confirmed]) and a shadowed figure between Captain America and Captain Marvel likely intended to remain a mystery for now (though feel free to speculate — the chest symbols bring to mind Ikaris of the Eternals, maybe?)

In a July interview with Newsarama, Avengers editor Tom Brevoort said that by issue #12 of the relaunched Avengers, the team has an “an active roster of about 18,” indicating that there are around four more members to come not seen in this image. Upon the original announcement of Marvel NOW! two months ago, Entertainment Weekly reported that Shang-Chi, Master of Kung Fu, would be on the team.

Dustin Weaver, who is scheduled to draw an upcoming Avengers arc, illustrated all three covers. Current Fantastic Four and FF writer Jonathan Hickman is launching the new twice-monthly Avengers series in December, and New Avengers with artist Steve Epting in January.

Update: Jonathan Hickman has commented on the covers on Twitter, writing, “Image released today is not the complete roster, we intentionally left off new characters for spoiler reasons.” and “And the roster starts at 18, grows to more.” In later tweets, he disclosed that there are eight more members still to come.

I love Jonathan Hickman. He’s an amazing writer, and one of my favorites of all time. I think his work elevates the medium to heights it’s never been, and captures ideas, concepts and thoughts that utterly fascinate and baffle me in turn. So I’m very conflicted on his tenure at Marvel, because he IS writing great Superhero stories, man, I’d rather he work on his independent, original work. In my opinion it’s more important, in every sense. That’s not to say that his Marvel work isn’t important, I just really REALLY like his original work, and crave it day and night like heroin. Yummy heroin.

Marvel Releases A Series Of New Marvel NOW! Related Teasers

To promote new books, sometimes they’ll pop a teaser ad in the middle of a book that’s popular. It’s a quick way to get people talking and speculating, and it generally creates a buzz for the project, and what it could be. Go on and click each one of the teasers for links back to Newsarama, where people much more knowledgeable than I, give far better analysis and guesses as to their meaning.

Teasers via [Newsarama]

Holy crap there’s a writer whose pen name is HOPELESS? I don’t know if that’s foreboding, ominous, or just badass. Probably all three. Who do I think this teaser is for? I’ve no clue actually. I’ll take a guess and say… Ant-Man? Yep. Ant-Man. Ahem.

People think this one is Deadpool, from the red crosshairs, and they’d have a solid point. An astute reader connect Lightning>Thunder, and come up with Thunderbolts. Who may be persecuted, and thusly have a target on their heads? Since they’re villains? Maybe Deadpool is gonna fight them? In a cage? On fire? During a storm? Brb, writing awesome superhero cage match fanfic.

These two are allegedly linked to the same project, so they’re going together. On my gut instinct alone, this makes me think Punisher. I know folks think that the Lightning one is for Punisher [EDITORS NOTE: My thoughts are of the Thunderbolts for this one], but the words WANTED and KILLER(s) make me think of ol’ Frank. The only thing throwing me off is the plural of KILLERS, so chances are I’m probably wrong.

So while all of my speculation is probably wrong, I’m allowed to dammit. You should go check out each teaser’s article over at Newsarama, if you’re putting money down on this sort of thing. Also, go see someone for your gambling problem.

Geoff Johns Talks About New Arab-American Green Lantern’s Creation.

Considering today is a very important day, I found this interview enlightening and relevant. I think the choice made here to portray an Arab-American by Geoff Johns is gutsy, but bold. It’s also notable that we get just a quick snippet of background history for Baz, who so far we know very little about.

via [SpeakEasy]

Did 9/11 inspire you to introduce a Arab-Muslim character, considering that it plays an important part of Simon Baz’ life?

When we re-launched our universe last year, diversity was a very important of the thinking when introducing characters. When I thought of the story, I had to introduce a new character into the “Green Latern” Corps. There was a lot of thought about his background, and that’s when I came up with the Arab-American “Green Lantern.”

What parts of your own life did you use when creating Baz?

My father is Lebanese so I have some of the cultural experience. I also worked with the Arab American National Museum in Dearborn on the script to make sure it had the authenticity of an Arab-American.

An Arab protagonist seems timely since there is this swirl of social issues that Muslims in post 9/11 America have to deal with.

True. As fantastic as the concept of “Green Lantern” is of an intergalactic police force, the comic has had a history of grounding in the now and dealing with modern characters and concepts and Simon Baz is that. I wanted to create a character that everyday Americans have to deal with.

When 9/11 hit, he was 10-years-old. His family was devastated, just like every other American. He’s grown up in that world. It’s just part of the daily life, the new normal.

The fact that the color green has a historical connection with Islam is probably coincidental but will religion play any part in future stories?

The background is in the DNA of who he is but it doesn’t define who he is. It’s more about a compelling character than anything else.

Geoff Johns is a writer you either love or hate. I’ve heard plenty of hate for him from friends, in real life and on the internet. Fortunately, I love him, and his work. I think he makes great, fun to read, yet not retardedly simple popcorn comics. He’s exactly the kind of guy I think should be working on superhero titles, rather than the Hickman’s of the world. This character he’s created, is a potentially risky step in a good direction, and follows through with the theme of diversity that DC execs touted at the beginning of the reboot of the DCU. I look forward to seeing the new stories with Baz, and hope his lineage, faith, and back story are written respectfully and tastefully by Johns, and any other who will be handling this character. It’s a great opportunity to reach out to the large muslim comics audience that’s out there, who I’m sure are craving some representation on the page.

New Writer For Superman, Introduces New Kryptonian Villain!

Even if it was hell for George Perez, his run on Superman was pretty goddamned boring. So boring, I stopped reading it. Being a big fan of Supes, I’ve been looking for a good point to jump back in, and start reading good Superman stories again. Hearing about a new Kryptonian villain, definitely sounds like the main foundation for the building blocks of a great Superman story.

via [Newsarama]

 Lobdell — already one of the most prolific writers at DC — will take over the Superman title, launching the second year of the iconic hero’s New 52 story with a new villainous threat.

Working with Kenneth Rocafort on art, Lobdell will start his run with this month’s Superman #0, then will take the title into November’s “H’el on Earth” event with Supergirl andSuperboy. The three “Super” characters will deal with a new Kryptonian supervillain named H’el, which Lobdell is introducing.

They then go on to conduct a LONG interview with Lobdell, who goes into detail about his plans, Superman, and what’s coming in store for him come issue #14, with the introduction of H’el. Here’s a choice snippet from the interview:

“Nrama: The “H’el on Earth” storyline that we’re seeing in the Super-books in November features what appears to be a new villain, but he’s got a Bizarro look about him. Is H’el a new take on Bizarro, or something new that you guys created for this story?

Lobdell: In my effort to re-imagine Superman’s villains, I went so far afield in re-imagining Bizarro with Kenneth, that editorial started saying “Um, Scott — this character is so not-Bizarro any more; he’s a whole new character, with new motivation, new history, new look, new origin.  You’re at the point where it doesn’t make any sense to call him Bizarro any more.”

And they were right.  

And for everyone who wonders about the “S” on his chest? It is so far removed from Bizarro or Prime or anyone else that you can relax: By the time this story is over, you’ll see that H’el and Bizarro can exist in the same world.”

You should go and read the whole thing over at Newsarama, because it’s fascinating, and worth the read.

Comic Rack: New JLA, A New Green Lantern, & Jack Kirby’s Birthday!

Welcome to Comic Rack! My pick of the top five comic news stories in no particular order…

A New Justice League In 2013!

Jim Lee and Geoff Johns have been hitting it off pretty hard with the New 52’s Justice League, a book that’s been breaking sales records in an industry that people thought was growing stagnant. Now with a book that’s selling well and a movie that’s in the works, it’s clear that the Justice League is back to the forefront of fans’ interest. Accordingly, Geoff Johns, DC”s head maestro, is looking to re-debut the more traditionally named Justice League Of America, next year.

Via [GEEK]

“This is a very different kind of team book,” says Geoff Johns in a DC blog post. “On first glance, people might think the heroes of the JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA stand in the shadows of Superman, Wonder Woman and the rest of the JUSTICE LEAGUE, but [they] thrive in the shadows. They’re underdogs who have everything to prove and something to lose. They’re a team of unlikely heroes who will help one another discover they’re as A-List as anybody — yes, even Vibe. Though getting there won’t be easy. Why they’re formed, why each member joins, what they’re after and who the society of villains is they’re trying to take apart will all be clear in the first issue when it hits early 2013. David and I are really focused on delving deep into what it’s like to not be a member of the big seven and why, sometimes, the grass isn’t always greener on the other side.”

The roster of heroes to be joining will be Green Arrow, Katana, Martian Manhunter, The New Green Lantern (Baz I presume), Star Girl, Vibe, Hawkman, and Catwoman. Which really does sound like an… eclectic team to say the least. But if there’s one thing that Geoff Johns is good at, it’s making lesser, forgotten, or wayside characters shine and pop like they’re brand new again. Case in point being Aquaman, which is one of my favorite DC books right now, and that in and of itself is a sentence I never thought I’d type. So I’m looking forward to the new JLA, since at the very least, it’ll be interesting to see Green Arrow try to hit on Catwoman.

Invincible’s Spin-Off Finally Looming Into Becoming A Reality.

For a while in 2010, Invincible was probably the best superhero book on the shelves. Not that it’s gotten bad or anything, just the opposite, but back then the Viltrumite War was happening, and that story arc was really kind of the climax of the entire story that Invincible had been building up to. Now it’s rebuilding it’s world, and it’s heroes to that effect, and in doing so, is expanding it’s actual line up by bringing back the Guardians Of The Globe, who fans of the book will remember as the Justice League analogue in the book. A few months ago,the book’s writer, Phil Hester, spoke about the book, and where it falls into place regarding the Invincible Timeline:

Via [Newsarama]

“The Invincible Universe has outgrown its parent title and I’m very excited about being able to tell larger, more in depth stories with some of the key players from that book in this series,” said GUARDING THE GLOBE creator/writer Robert Kirkman, “Phil Hester and Todd Nauck are well known to fans of superhero comics and I think people are fully aware that they’re going to knock this book out of the park.”

I’m interested to see where he takes the heroes we’ve come to know and care about in the Invincible/Image universe, and the idea of seeing Brit back in action sounds pretty great. Best of all, you can even check a 6-Page preview of the book right here.(link)

The New Green Lantern, Baz, Is Arab-American.

I know, for some of you, this shouldn’t mean anything, and good on you for thinking it doesn’t, because it shouldn’t. However, it unfortunately does, and a small section of xenophobic comics fans, whether they want to admit it or not, will have a problem with this.

via [Newsarama]

 “The confirmation comes from an unlikely yet reliable source:  Green Lantern writer and DC Chief Creative Officer Geoff Johns is appearing on Sept. 8 at the Arab American National Museum in Detroit to mark the hero’s debut, according to a story in the Detroit Free Press.

The article, which called the hero the “first Arab-American Green Lantern,” is also the first DC confirmation of the character’s name — ‘Baz’.”

Believe me, I want to say that this kind of story should be no big deal, but the fact is that some people will make it out to be. A similar thing happened a long time ago when they had Nightrunner back in 2011 for Batman Inc. Nightrunner was a Muslim character who lived in France, of all places, who was taking up the mantle of Batman there. Unfortunately, the mere fact he was Muslim led people to thinking he was “Terrorist Batman”, (which is literally what Mark Millar does, but that’s neither here nor there), and people judging the character before even reading anything or knowing anything about him, and that’s without that character even BEING Arab or anything. Hopefully, I’m over-speculating, and it’ll be no big deal at all, but I do have to give kudos to Geoff Johns for trying to expand the idea of an establishing the idea that a superhero doesn’t need to be a white person, and having a representation in the book there for the plenty of Arab-American comics fans.

Wait, what? Why are they beating him up? Oh Man…

Uncanny Avengers Spearheads The Lineup of Marvel Now, Marvel Insists It’s Not A Reboot.

Fans of Marvel will have a lot to look forward to in the coming months, as we’ve previously detailed here at GB. But what’s interesting is the basic idea of trying to unite the two different sides of Marvel fandom. One being the Avengers/Marvel U fans, and the other being the longtime X-Men fans. This summer’s big event AvX was an attempt to start this, and really has kicked things off for them to cancel, revamp, and re-begin (I’m trying to avoid the word “re-boot”) certain main titles in the effort to make all X-Men fans, Marvel fans, and vice versa.

via [CBR]

“It’s a team of characters comprised of characters coming both from the Marvel heroes, Avengers side of the fence and characters from the X-Men side of the fence,” said Brevoort. “It’s our cats and dogs in the same pen book.”

Alonso added that part of the major appeal of “AvX” is that it spans the entire Marvel Universe as opposed to just the Avengers, Spider-Man or the X-Men segments — something he hopes will continue with “Uncanny Avengers.” “With ‘Uncanny Avengers,’ you’re going to see a book that’s going to be relevant to both types of fans: the fans who gravitate towards the Avengers and the larger Marvel Universe and fans who are all about the X-Men.”

That’s just one of the main focal points that they’re trying to get across to their fan base, but along with that is their plans to with Marvel NOW! Point One, which is a collection of stories by big name Marvel Creators such as Brian Michael Bendis, Steve McNiven, Jeph Loeb, Ed McGuiness, Nick Spencer, Matt Fraction and more.

“Marvel NOW! Point One’ is sort of the kickoff of our entry into Marvel NOW! and also gives a new setup and little taste,” said Brevoort. “Completely all-new stories that are not the first eight pages of the individual books that are involved of a number of new titles that are coming out in the context of a full story. All — I think it’s 50 pages of this thing — are new content by the biggest creators.”

There’s a ton more in the article where they even mention the New 52, and it’s switching of creative teams early on, as an example of what they will NOT be doing. Along with that, there’s the brief mention of digital content codes being included in books priced at $3.99, and a few other tidbits that are all very enlightening about the longterm goals of this re…launch. Ahem. Anyhow, make sure you go back to CBR and read the whole thing, because there are loads more interesting anecdotes from the Marvel VP of Sales and Marvel’s Editors on the whole shebang.

In Case You Didn’t Know Or Forgot, This Week Was Jack Kirby’s Birthday!

August 28th was the day, and if the man was still alive today it would have been his 95th birthday. If for some sick reason you don’t know, Jack Kirby is the one who many believe to be TRULY responsible for the myriad Marvel characters you enjoy, and that the credit is unfairly balanced towards Stan Lee in his stead. Personally, I’ve always loved both, but it is pretty prevalent that Kirby, outside of the comics world, has never gotten the recognition for his work that Lee has. Regardless, Kirby has contributed to the comics landscape with unforgettable, imaginative characters and worlds that are timelessly evocative and creative. He was the guy who brought us Captain America, many of the X-Men, The Fantastic Four, Hulk, Thor, Darkseid, The Fourth World, The Anti-Life Equation, The New Gods, and so many others that we love.

I’m not hating on Stan Lee, but there’s a reason he’s Stan “The Man”, and Kirby is “The King”.

The New 52 – ‘Red Lantern: Blood and Rage’

What do you do when all you are fueled on grief and rage, but suddenly all that has gone? Red Lantern Atrocitus has this dilemma after Krona, the rogue guardian who slaughtered his home world is killed by Hal Jordan and not by Atrocitus’s hands. He is on a path of self discovery to see where his life now leads him. His troops no longer respect him, he is a changed man.

Continue reading The New 52 – ‘Red Lantern: Blood and Rage’

Does Justice League Have a Director? Hint: He Was the Bomb in Phantoms, Yo.

According to Variety via Fandango, it looks like Warner Bros. has approached Ben Affleck to direct the Justice League movie. Affleck is a hot property in the directing pool due to his critical and commercial successes with Gone Baby Gone and The Town. Argo is also shaping up to be a film to be reckoned with considering the early buzz, and since he has made Warner Bros. some money with his films, they have sent him the Will Beale (Gangster Squad) script to see if he’d be willing to guide DC’s finest to the promised land achieved by The Avengers, aka, a vault full of cash.

The movie is scheduled to be launched at the earliest around 2015 so that would put it into direct competition with The Avengers 2 movie, which just announced Joss Whedon returning as director and writer. Ben Affleck apparently makes it known that he wants to act in the films that he directs so you might also see him don a costume if this comes true. He has been circling another project called Replay, which is also being developed by Warner as well, but they have been working on that for the last decade so this might be his next project. Only thing that might get in the way would be his long-term commitment because 2015 is a long ways away and he would be tied up until then most likely developing the story and filming. I don’t know how he can get the time off from Fashionable Male during this time.

He’s come a long way from the back of a Volkswagon

I can understand the misgivings of Ben Affleck as the director of this movie. First off, he’s not Christopher Nolan, let’s get that out of the way. Second, it’s Ben freakin’ Affleck. He was the dominatrix Daredevil and that might ruin any street cred with the comic book crowd. The reputation might not be there for him to tackle this movie with that awkward fight scene with Elektra (Jennifer Garner) on people’s minds. Third, this would only be his fourth movie and unlike Joss Whedon, he does not appear to have a deep understanding of fanboys and the comic book universe. Can he handle the massive size of this project when he is considered a neophyte to the directing game? He is basically one of the more random choices out there to grab on to. However, I liked Gone Baby Gone and I loved The Town (partially because the Boston accent is fun to imitate) and I feel that he can definitely handle the characters and the scope of this movie based off of those flicks. Now, I absolutely do NOT want him to act in it but not because I think he is a bad actor (quite the opposite actually), but he should concentrate on delivering on all the characters and not just his own. I think he would be a great choice but I honestly don’t think he’ll do it. 3 years is a long time for someone to dedicate for the movie. Granted, I don’t know who else would at this point but just for discussion purposes, maybe Looper director Rian Johnson? He has about the same experience as Affleck behind the camera and handled Bruce Willis and potential DC staple Joseph Gordon-Levitt in Looper. Granted, as I wrote that, he also did Brick, which I loved and also with JGL so maybe he should revive that detective feel and go with Batman. Boom. Discuss.