In the ever-changing environment of American cinema, a new trend has emerged in blockbuster films. As the Expendables franchise unites action stars of old and today, the Avengers franchise key characters of several different Marvel films, and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice some of DC Comics’ most iconic properties, Toho’s most well known franchise will be bringing together some of the company’s other notable players. At the San Diego Comic-Con, it was announced a sequel is being planned for the hit 2014 film Godzilla. An American reboot of the popular sixty year old franchise, Godzilla saw the titular character return to his Kaiju fighting roots battling two giant monsters (referred in the film as MUTO for Massive Unidentified Terrestrial Organism). Produced by Legendary Pictures, the studio may very well become known as the giant monster movie makers with a sequel to its cult hit Pacific Rim, a prequel to King Kong in the upcoming Skull Island, and now a sequel to Godzilla scheduled for the future (though, Legendary isn’t the only Kaiju game in town with Lionsgate’s upcoming Power Rangers film). Lets examine who will be joining the King of the Monsters on the big screen.Read More
While Marvel blazed a trail with its Marvel Cinematic Universe which opened up into television and original online streaming content, DC Comics pursued another route with the television series Arrow. Originally a solitary series focusing on the exploits of Green Arrow, its popularity has evolved into establishing a spin-off/extension in The Flash. Somewhat attempted before in the vein of Smallville with Birds of Prey and the unproduced Aquaman (in that it featured young attractive people generally in non-costumes, with some exception, appearing on the same channel), the worlds of Arrow and Flash directly correlate to each other as Arrow set the stage for the newer series with a crossover planned in the coming season. Though, it should be noted, DC has since dipped its toe into its own Cinematic Universe with the upcoming Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and a Justice League film (likely to include Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, and Cyborg who were cast for the earlier film) that will not align with the TV Universe. Lets look at some of the characters set to emerge in the DC Television Universe.Read More
When you talk about professional wrestling in the United States, the overwhelming majority of people think of the WWE, World Wrestling Entertainment (formerly WWF, the World Wrestling Federation). The undisputed king of wrestling entertainment, companies like World Championship Wrestling (WCW) and Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW) would compete against WWF only to thrive, die, and be consumed by the Federation. Others would emerge, Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (TNA) would take up remnants of WCW to become the WWE’s closest competition (of which it’s a distant competitor) and Ring of Honor (ROH) would largely be a beacon to independent promotions, in essence a showcase for various other companies under one roof, until it emerged as its own corporate-owned entity and became the third biggest pro wrestling organization in the US. ROH, to a degree, is one in a series of inheritors of the mantle of ECW. Philadelphia and its surrounding area was becoming a major hub for pro wrestling in the country, capitalized in this idea with the formation of the Tri-State Wrestling Alliance in 1989 which marked Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware as its territory (as part of the National Wrestling Alliance, NWA). Eventually, Tri-State’s territory grew to include New York and other Northeastern states, changing its name to Eastern Championship Wrestling in 1992. The NWA was largely the be-all, end-all of pro wrestling before Vincent Kennedy McMahon cherry picked its top talent to form his WWF and became independent of NWA. In wake of this, WCW grew to be its largest umbrella entity until it too broke away out on its own. Eastern Championship Wrestling would be the next hotspot to grow in the NWA until it became Extreme Championship Wrestling in 1994 and, as with WWF and WCW, broke away. Much like a king with several sons vying for the right to rule the kingdom, when ECW died a new inheritor to the realm was sought by many suitors.Read More
In 2012, the comic book world lost one of its own when artist Al Rio passed. Famous for his work on Gen¹³ and DV8 for Wildstorm and various assignments for Zenescope in a career spanning almost two decades, he is survived by his wife and three children. It is for his family that a tribute series has started exploring Rio’s career up to its unexpected end. The first book in the series, Al Rio Tribute Art Book Volume One, features art from 2003 to 2005 (two previous books covering earlier years and have which become highly collectible) and a biography on the artist’s life.Read More
With filming beginning already on Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and the announcement of a Justice League film being produced directly afterward, a lot of focus has been placed on the super group in recent memory. The premier superhero team for DC Comics, the Justice League of America was a 1960s update of the 1940s Justice Society of America. Traditionally, the group is made up of the most powerful and popular heroes for the publisher originally starting with Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Flash, Green Lantern, Aquaman, and Martian Manhunter (the first three commonly referred as the Trinity and the seven called the Big 7). However, within subsequent issues the cast grew to include the likes of Green Arrow, Atom, Hawkman, Black Canary, and dozens more as years passed. With such a powerful group, the Justice League fought the worst of the worst as foes like Starro, Amazo, Despero, Doctor Destiny, Felix Faust, Lord of Time, Queen Bee, and the Crime Syndicate not only threatened the League but many times the world. Out of around two hundred members across such variations as International, Europe, Antarctica, Task Force, Unlimited, Elite, Dark, United, and more, lets examine who qualifies as the best of the best.Read More
News broke late May that Vortexx, the children’s programming block on the CW, would be coming to an end to make way for live action programming for a more family-orientated audience. Vortexx holds the distinction of being the last block of syndicated Saturday morning cartoons in the United States. Where channels like ABC, CBS, and NBC once dominated the market, cable channels like USA got into the act before local affiliates of Fox, Warner Bros, and more largely inherited the realm. Saturday morning cartoons came about in the 1960s when television stations wanted to sell advertising space that would appeal to children. So, animation studios that could cheaply produce series were hired and cartoons once only available in movie theaters were telecast on Saturday mornings. The experiment was a complete success. And the only place it could go was up.Read More
Collected last September, Masks was one of several series teaming some of the properties licensed by Dynamite Entertainment (alongside series like The Lone Ranger/Zorro: The Death Of Zorro, The Prophecy, Lords of Mars, The Shadow/Green Hornet: Dark Knights, Codename: Action, Kings Watch, and Justice, Inc.). Among its contemporaries, the series stands out teaming the likes of the Shadow, Green Hornet and Kato, Zorro, Spider, and others. Its story is based in 1938 (the year Superman premiered and changed the face of the comic book industry) as a new political party emerges and sweeps control of New York. Known as the Justice Party, regular police are disbanded and replaced with the Black Legion who enforce the totalitarian rule of the new regime with an iron fist. As it’s learned this party is in fact controlled by organized crime and founded by a former crime fighter named the Clock, the various mystery men of New York are forced to ban together as the city’s last hope for justice. With superheroes taking over Hollywood, it’s likely studios are looking for the next concept not tied to Marvel or DC Comics (as the former is largely tied to Disney and latter to Warner Bros). Further, while the pop culture presence of characters like the Shadow, Green Hornet, and Zorro are fading, its arguably greater than something from another publisher like Image or Dark Horse (Spawn and Hellboy notwithstanding). Lets take a look at how this story could be made for the big screen.Read More
Writer’s Note: The Idol-Head of Diabolu, a Martian Manhunter blog was invaluable in the creation of this article! Visit them today.
David Goyer, the scribe behind Man of Steel and its sequel Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, recently drew criticism for comments regarding the Martian Manhunter. Painting the character as silly from his name to his modus operandi, the statement heaped even more backlash from fans that panned Man of Steel and decried seemingly every new announcement about the sequel (be it the casting of actors like Ben Affleck, Gal Gadot, and Jesse Eisenberg to the very title of the upcoming film). Several sites have cited part of the problems with Man of Steel and choices made about its sequel could come from a lack of understanding of the source material, the statement given by Goyer another in a series from the scribe and director Zack Snyder that may have some basis for the claim. Considered somewhat less than an A-list character, lets take a look at the Manhunter from Mars.Read More
This article was reprinted by permission from Terry Hoknes of Hoknes Comics and Collectibles
Bi-weekly column and list compiled by comics historian Terry Hoknes of www.HoknesComics.com – email@example.com
This chart is styled like the old classic Wizard Magazine Top 10 Hottest Comic charts that were published every month in the 1990′s.
This list is updated every 2 weeks. This list is compiled from my non-stop research of the current market. I believe these were the most demand and growing in value books this month. This list focuses on all regular edition covers. (Variants are not listed otherwise they would likely dominate the entire list due to instant high prices and calculated small print runs). If you think I have missed any hot MODERN titles/issues please let me know. Here are my picks of what I believe are the hottest comics at this very moment from all sold out releases of MODERN comics online based on back issue sales ABOVE cover price.
Note these are all the “hot” recent sold comics that your comic shops will not have still on the shelf for cover price. However many speculators will hunt their local comic shops looking for that “hot” book that is still on the shelf – sometimes you find them!Read More
It was recently announced a deal has been reached between Saban Brands and Lionsgate to produce a live action Power Rangers feature film. While few details are yet available, the wording strongly suggests the film as being a completely separate entity from the television series and associated media. In other words, it’s not expected the film connects to the current franchise or ties in to the show, be it past or present. And, again, while nothing is known about the film, Saban did skip over a season of Super Sentai (the Japanese series that Power Rangers is made from), specifically Tokumei Sentai Go-Busters. Fans speculated the move was made because the season after Go-Busters, Zyuden Sentai Kyoryuger (which will become Power Rangers Dino Charge), had a significantly greater output of toy merchandise. And while this maybe true, it could also be the Lionsgate deal has been in the works for some time and Go-Busters may have been put to the side because it would lend itself well to film. Having a spy theme, Go-Busters features a team of three youths trained to combat an energy being that wishes to conquer mankind and live in a world for machines (elements reminiscent of Terminator and The Matrix). Based on comments made by Haim Saban, it’s likely film series like The Hunger Games, Twilight, and Divergent will provide inspiration for the movie’s cast and story. However, it’s likely films like The Raid: Redemption, Pacific Rim, and The Avengers could also inspire the direction of the upcoming Power Rangers picture as the studio likely wants to capitalize on the popularity of superheroes at the box office. Lets examine some elements we’re likely to see in the film.Read More
Considering the success of USA Cartoon Express, Disney Afternoon, and Fox Kids, other companies in the early 1990s wanted to capitalize on the popularity of animated programming blocks for children. One such corporation was Bohbot Communications which founded subsidiary Bohbot Entertainment to package programming for syndication. Forming a partnership with DiC Entertainment and Saban Entertainment, Bohbot developed the Amazin’ Adventures programming block in 1992 premiering with Double Dragon, Mighty Max, King Arthur and the Knights of Justice, and Gulliver’s Travels. Arguably the biggest hit of Amazin’ Adventures, Double Dragon was loosely based on the video game series of the same name from Technos Japan.
Likely Technos Japan’s biggest hit in the United States, the Double Dragon video game series featured brothers Billy and Jimmy Lee who battled the Black Warriors to save Billy’s kidnapped girlfriend Marian (only to reveal the gang was actually led by Jimmy). As the Shadow Boss, Jimmy desired Marian for himself and set up the ruse to defeat his brother. Billy would end up winning out over his sibling and saved Marian. In the sequel, the Black Warriors return and kill Marian drawing the Lee brothers together again on a quest for revenge against the evil Shadow Master (though, defeating him seemingly resurrects Marian). In the animated series, Marian is police officer Marian Martin whose life is saved by Billy Lee. As the Shadow Warriors gang takes over Metro City, Marian deputizes Billy leading the martial arts master to meet his long lost brother Jimmy, better known as Shadow Boss. When Shadow Master (who kidnapped Jimmy as a baby and raised him as his protege) betrays his student, Jimmy switches alliances to Billy and the two take up magical swords to transform into the Double Dragons. Forming the Dragon Warriors with other heroes, the Lee brothers combat Shadow Master and later Shadow Khan. The series would run for two seasons and inspired a video game adaptation in Double Dragon V: The Shadow Falls and a toyline from Tyco. The animated series that followed Double Dragon would be one based on a toyline.Read More
The story begins in the “Void” with Wonderland shaping itself as none other than James Franco. An unusual but perfect choice when you figure who Wonderland would chose to personify itself. Strangely enough the reader finds themselves drawn to the realization that Wonderland yearns for human companionship… even if that human companionship can either bring healing or destruction.Read More