DC & WB Rock Hall H with A Justice League Trailer & An Updated Film Slate!

(Submitted with much DC love by Mr. Prince Adam… 😉 Thanks, and Happy Birthday Week, Super Friend! 🙂 xoxo)


San Diego Comic Con has come and gone, and once again, the news and footage coming out of Warner Brothers DC Entertainment panel has left me amazed and excited. Let’s start with news updates.  We know that after Justice League, Aquaman is next in theaters in December of 2018. Beyond that, we had no idea what was coming after that….until now! SHAZAM will go into production in February 2018, for a 2019 release! While we don’t have actors announced for Billy Batson or his SHAZAM alter-ego, we know The Rock has been cast as Black Adam, SHAZAM’s nemesis.  However, Geoff Johns has stated that he will not appear in SHAZAM, instead focusing on a Black Adam solo movie, and then culminating with a faceoff between the two. The director of the film will be David F, Sandberg.  The director should be familiar to readers of this site, as he has directed the horror film Lights Out and has the film Annabelle: Creation releasing in August.  If I had my way the story for SHAZAM should be an amalgamation of the origin written by Geoff Johns and drawn by Gary Frank, and an older story titled Trials of SHAZAM.  Both, I will eventually review here.  No matter what story is told, if done correctly, SHAZAM, could be a mix of Superman, meets Harry Potter, with a sprinkle of BIG thrown in there! It has all the potential to be a four quadrant crowd pleaser and a big hit with kids.

The other DC Films on WB’s schedule are Batgirl, Suicide Squad 2, Justice League: Dark, Green Lantern Corps, The Batman, The Flash: Flashpoint,  and Wonder Woman 2.  Here’s what we know about some of the other films:

Batgirl is being written and directed by the masterful Joss Whedon.  Geoff Johns said that Joss Whedon will start work on Batgirl in 2018 because as of right now, he is finishing up scheduled reshoots on Justice League, after he stepped in for Zack Snyder, when Zack had to step away from the film due to a personal family tragedy.  Justice League Dark is currently searching for a director, after filmmaker Doug Liman left the project due to a scheduling conflict. Green Lantern Corps is being co-written by David Goyer and Justin Rhodes, with a story treatment by Geoff Johns.  The film will feature many Green Lanterns but the focus will be on Hal Jordan and John Stewart.  The film has been described as Lethal Weapon in space.  The Batman is just gearing up with Matt Reeves directing, after just releasing the master class that is War for the Planet of the Apes.  Matt Reeves indicating they are in the initial stages of scripting and while he’s focused on this film, he does have ideas for a multi-film Batman story.  Most in Hollywood believe it is a trilogy.  The director has said he envisions The Batman as a noir detective story, which is music to my ears. The Flash film recently had a new draft of the script turned in and is now an adaptation of the 2011 even miniseries Flashpoint.  In terms of directors, last we heard was that Robert Zemeckis of Back to the Future fame, was the frontrunner to direct. I hope the deal is finalized, because Robert Zemeckis and The Flash seems like a match made in heaven.  In regards to a Wonder Woman sequel, that’s a no-brainer after the massive success of the Wonder Woman film, which is still in theaters.  Negotiations for Patty Jenkins to return to direct are underway and Geoff Johns just started writing the script. There are rumors indicating that the film will be another period piece, set to the backdrop of the Cold War. Though, there’s no official confirmation of that.

About 12 hours before the DC Films presentation, a report indicated that Warner Brothers was plotting a course for the Batman solo film franchise without Ben Affleck as its star.  The report has asserted that Affleck’s age and Matt Reeve’s desire to do a trilogy as reasons for Affleck’s supposed exit. The posited that Ben Affleck’s last performance as Batman, could possibly be Justice League in November.  The report indicated that a story reason in one of the upcoming DC Films would account for a recast Batman.  At today’s panel, Ben Affleck was asked directly about this story.  This was his response; “”Let me be clear: I am the luckiest guy in the world… I would be an ape on the ground for Matt Reeves let alone Batman.” Here’s my take on the situation.  I think there’s truth in both Ben Affleck’s statement and The Hollywood Reporter.  Here’s how I see it going down.  My gut feeling is that Ben Affleck will star in The Batman.  He will then make a cameo at the beginning of Flashpoint.  Then Flash will go back in time, and prevent the death of his mother.  When he does, that causes several changes to the timeline, including a war between Themyscira and Atlantis.  Also, Bruce Wayne was killed as a child, instead of his parents on that fateful night.  This drives Martha insane, and prompts Thomas Wayne to become Batman.  Barry Allen works with Thomas Wayne’s Batman to get his speed back, so he can reset the timeline.  The only reason Thomas Wayne agrees to help him, is because The Flash tells Thomas Wayne that in his timeline he and Martha died, but Bruce survived and was the Batman of his world.  When Flash regains his speed, he returns to the Batcave, and talks with a younger looking Batman. The reason why Batman is younger, is because all the heroes lost some time of their lives.  You’d have to rework a bit of the story, but you could have the ending where after fixing the timeline you could have Flash meet Batman in the Batcave to make sure that everything went back to normal. At this moment, you could have Ben Affleck’s potential replacement in that scene.

That’s all what’s to come in the near future, but let’s talk about something more immediate.  The newest Justice League Comic Con Sneak peek, was 4 minutes of Nerdgasmic justice. The trailer starts with DC’s newest movie Superstar, Wonder Woman stops a bank robbery, busting open doors and doing her signature leg sweep.  We then see a quick shot of Bruce Wayne talking about an upcoming threat.  Cut to Themyscira.  We see Hippolyta and the Amazon’s looking on as a Mother Box opening up a boom tube, followed by Steppenwolf crashing throw it.  We see little bits of Steppenwolf throughout the trailer but never a full on shot.  There’s a Steppenwolf voiceover with him saying that Earth has no protectors, no Lanterns and no Kryptonian.  It will fall, like all the others.  He scorches the earth with what looks like a big steel whip.  But yes, we have a Green Lantern reference.  They exist in the DCEU.  We get more solo shots and action shots of the team. Aquaman underwater, dodging Apocalyptian spears.  We see The Flash running, and we see Cyborg plugging into the Knight crawler and assuming control from Alfred.  Speaking of Alfred, there’s a lot of humor from Alfred. There’s even a reference to Batman Returns.  Let’s see if you spot it.  Batman and the world are still morning the loss of Superman. We see Batman return to the scene of Superman’s death, perched on a gargoyle. We also see a scene of Batman on a rooftop, looking at the Bat-Signal.  I don’t care what anyone says, but nobody does iconic Batman shots like Zack Snyder.  Speaking of iconic Batman shots, we get Batman and J.K. Simmons pitch perfect Commissioner Gordon on a rooftop with the Batmobile.  This classic moment is given a different dynamic, as the entire Justice League has joined them.  This leads to one of the funniest moments of the trailer courtesy of The Flash.  He actually has two. Two action scenes that really stood out were Aquaman quasi surfing on a Parademon down a building, and The Flash catching and tossing Wonder Woman’s wayward sword back to her.  Wonder Woman stole the show in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, and I believe Ezra Miller will be the standout as The Flash in Justice League.  Also, good job by the marketing department for having Superman heavily mentioned and referenced but never flat our shown! Save his resurrection for the film!

I loved this trailer.  I think it as the visual power and flare that you come to expect from a Zack Snyder film, with the epic, fun tone you get from reading a Justice League comic book or an episode of the animated series.  I think even detractors of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice will enjoy this trailer. Wonder Woman was a high note for the DCEU and I think Justice League will further build on that.  Aquaman will make that wave stronger and the updated announced slate will keep the good times rolling. I can’t wait to see Justice League on November 17th and review it for you all, shortly thereafter. As the trailer tagline says, I’m All In with the DCEU!

News Bleed: The “Comic Con Catch-Up” Edition

Ho-wdy, Kinky Kreeps! Another San Diego Comic Con has bitten the dust, but we’re here to give you some of the biggest Noose from the event! In addition to this post, we will also be covering DC’s big reveals and the coolest monster toys of the con! So, without any further A-BOO…

Scream Factory will unleash all sorts of monstrosities, including Silent Night Deadly Night, Drag Me to Hell, The Darkman Sequels, Misery, and Attack of the Puppet People!  :) Daily Dead

Blumhouse & Todd McFarlane makes a deal with the Devil to summon Spawn! DeadlineSan Diego becomes ScareDiego! Warner Bros. and New Line Cinema keep it creepy with IT, the very first footage of The Nun, Annabelle: Creation, Q&As and scene descriptions! Here are the Q&As/scene descriptions! 🙂 Dread Central

The new The Walking Dead trailer gets bloody. 🙂 The Verge

Darkness falls across the land in the new Stranger Things trailer. 🙂 Variety

Robot Chicken takes a bite out of The Walking Dead. 🙂 UPROXX

Harley Quinn takes over Batman Day this year! 🙂 Polygon

Michelle Pfeiffer is The Wasp, Captain Marvel loves the ’90s, Skrulls attack, Infinity War, Black Panther, and new footage… Check out everything Marvel unveiled! BBC

Carnivorous Cartoon Cavalcade: Tales from the Cryptkeeper – Fare Tonight

Ho-wdy, Fright Fiends! SDCC got in the way of my usual #SplatterdayMourning posting, but there’s no way I’d leave you without a creepy cartoon for your wicked weekend viewing pleasure. So without further ado, I presenteth thee with KH’s very first Carnivorous Cartoon Calvacade. (#GoWithIt… ;))

We’ve got another animated atrocity to thrill you, chill you, and fulfill you! This time, we’re takin’ a scenic walk through the crypt with our favorite Master of Scar-emonies… The Cryptkeeper!

#Hotness

Ghoul-d Ol’ Crypty has done just about everything a creep can SCREAM of… he started with some of the influential fright comics of all SLIME, appeared in movies, had a hit Terrorvision show, made appearances at amusement parks, has had his seXXXy mug plastered on everything known to monsterkind, and even had two records! Of CORPSE, all of that isn’t enough for big shot like Ol’ Crypty. Having scared the pants off of every adult in A-SCARE-ica, The Cryptkeeper intended to do the same to all the little boils and ghouls. Yes, fright friend, Crypty had his own Splatterday Mourning Cartoon… Tales from the Cryptkeeper!
Tales from the Cryptkeeper was essentially a friendly, cleaner version of the HBO show. Howl-ever, that just doesn’t mean this show doesn’t have its fare share of ghouls, ghosts, and goons. For a KILL-dren’s show. there’s still plenty o’ ho-rror to be had!
Our tale from the crypt is bloodsucker entitled Fare Tonight. It’s a twisted tale of two girls who dare ask this biting question: Will the Real Vampire Please Stand Up?
For all you night “people” out there, here’s Fare Tonight:

Pleasant Nightmares!

News Bleed: The “Cult of DOOM!” Edition

Fargo creator Noah Hawley is the harbinger of Doom… Doctor Doom, that is. 🙂 Variety

American Horror Story finally reveals its title! 🙂 Screen Rant

David Cronenberg’s Consumed gets consumed by AMC! Deadline

The first Pacific Rim: Uprising urges you to join the Jaeger Uprising! 🙂 Entertainment Weekly

Game on! Check out the first Jigsaw trailer! Forbes

Halloween finally comes to Disney California Adventure. 🙂 Attractions Magazine

No more clowning around… a Harley Quinn vs. The Joker movie is (reportedly) happening! Movie Web

Batman & Bill (2017)

(Submitted by Mr. Prince Adam…Thanks for helping spread the good word, Bat Buddy! 😉 xoxo)

Who created Batman?  Well, if you scroll the reprints of old comic books or watch any Batman animated, or live action film prior to Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, it will tell you that Bob Kane is solely responsible for the creation of this enduring and much loved character.  However, in the documentary film Batman & Bill presented by Hulu,  Marc Tyler Nobleman uncovers a secret and exposes the truth.  Shortly after the success of Superman, National Comics, which eventually became DC Comics, went to Bob Kane and asked if he could create a second superhero for them.  At that Friday meeting, he assured them he would have their next superhero on their desk by Monday.  Over the course of that weekend, Bob came up with an idea and then showed his friend and collaborator on other books what he had.  That friend helped Bob tweak his ideas, implementing several suggestions, which improved and fleshed out the character. With both men happy, Bob Kane took the meeting, the publisher loved it and bought the character.  Bob and Bill had a verbal handshake agreement, where Bob promised to split some of whatever he earns.  However, during the meeting, Bob Kane never mentions that another person was involved in the creation of the character and negotiated a sole creator credit on The Bat-Man and eventually worked out getting a “piece of the pie”, as he put it.  I don’t know, nor was it stated in the film, whether Bob Kane shared any money from that sale with Bill Finger. It was stated that Bill Finger was hired as a writer/ghostwriter on Batman later on.  Some will say. “Well, at least he got paid for his work later on.” Well that’s all well and good, until you realize just how much of a hand in creating Batman Bill Finger actually had.  First, it’s worth noting that Bob Kane came up with the name The-Batman.  His version of the character was blonde, wore a red leotard and had a domino mask, akin to something Robin would eventually wear.  Marc Tyler Nobleman, consults archives and comic book writers and artists past and present, to reveal that Bill Finger was responsible for the following concepts; the origin, the costume, Bruce Wayne, Dick Grayson, Robin, The Joker, The Riddler, The Penguin, Catwoman, the Batcave, Gotham City and the Batmobile.  So, basically, Bill Finger created all the parts of Batman that are cool and make Batman…well Batman!  Even when DC Comics discovered the truth, years later, they didn’t do anything about it, for fear of opening up a legal can of worms with Bob Kane.  Bill Finger didn’t have funds to fight for his rights legally.

The truth was made public to fans at an early comic con in the 60’s, when a DC Comics editor introduced Bill Finger as the creator of Batman.  When he was questioned about it, he clarified what he was responsible for, which is all of the stuff l listed above.  What’s great about this document, is that you hear the rare audio clip from this convention.  You’re hearing Batman history, as you watch this documentary.   A contributor to a Batman fanzine publicized the quote in one of the issues.  This was Bob Kane’s first opportunity to set the record straight, finally giving Bill Finger the credit he deserves. Instead, he writes a letter absolutely, flat out denying Bill Finger’s comments, asserting that he was the sole creator of Batman and asks for it to be published in the magazine.  As years passed, while Bill Finger struggled to make ends meet and ultimately died alone, Bob Kane enjoyed the fame and part of the fortune Batman brought with it. This miscarriage of justice, is what led Marc Tyler Noble to write this book. To give notoriety and a voice for the often forgotten Bill Finger. Our writer/narrator in this film becomes a detective out for justice for Bill Finger.  He essentially becomes a real life Batman for Bill Finger.   The detective work Mr. Nobleman does would make Batman proud.  First, he goes to wear Bill Finger used to live and from there, discovers Bill Finger had a second wife who was still alive.  From her info, he was told that Bill Finger had a niece and nephew.  From there, he literally called every Finger in the phonebook until he found Bill’s nephew and niece.  Here we learned that Bill Finger had a son.  Marc Tyler Nobleman in the documentary excitedly perks up, as this relative could be one of the few that could challenge for creator rights for his father. Sadly, we learned that Bill’s son died of AIDS.  Just when it seemed like legal recognition was lost for Bill Ginger, the discovery of his granddaughter is made.  This was like an AH HA moment from the Batman ’66 TV show, when Batman and Robin would discover one of Riddler’s clues, or foil one of the Joker’s plots.  Marc Tyler Nobleman urges Athena Finger to meet with Warner Brothers to discuss getting a creator credit for her grandfather.  The film reveals that WB & DC acknowledged Bill Finger’s contributions but once again, didn’t want to open the can of worms in dealing with Bob Kane’s estate and trying to alter that credit. The documentary features an interview and quotes from the man who co-wrote Bob Kane’s biography, where Bob Kane produced a fake drawing of Batman dated in 1933 where he allegedly formed the concept of Batman.  The reason this is known to be fake, is because it looked like the core modern drawing of Batman, with the insignia in the yellow oval etc.  The first design, which was crafted by Finger, looked significantly different. In the same interview, recorded on tape and made available for the documentary, Bob Kane admits that Bill Finger was involved with 50-75% of the conception and creation of Batman. Armed with this recording, a lawyer and national attention, thanks to Marc Tyler Nobleman’s book and taking Athena Finger to conventions and spreading this story, Athena meets with Warner Brothers and DC Comics once more.  This time. she is awarded with a credit byline, for her grandfather.  Starting with episodes of GOTHAM & the release of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Batman’s credit line will read; Created By Bob Kane with Bill Finger.

This documentary fascinated me as it revealed a mystery about Batman’s creation that I and many other fans, weren’t aware of.  It made me sad, that for so long, Bill Finger wasn’t credited for his work.  Sadder still, that Bill Finger died alone, his son suffered and died from aids and Athena Finger raised her son as a single mom and for so long had to struggle to make ends meet, while another man reaped the rewards both public and monetarily, based on a good portion of someone else’s hard work.  Ultimately, I felt uplifted and happy that justice had been done, for Batman’s most influential founding father.  This documentary is also unique to watch because it breaks the mold of normal documentaries, by having some scenes drawn as a motion comic book. These scenes had the classic pulpy but noir look of the early Batman comic books.  I will always appreciate Bob Kane for his 25-50% contribution, whatever that actually was, to Batman. However, I’m glad justice was done for Bill Finger and I am thankful to him, for creating many of the aspects of Batman I gravitate to and love.  For the Finger family, Marc Tyler Nobleman was the hero they deserved and the one they needed.  For Marc Tyler Nobleman, the truth wasn’t good enough. He deserved to have his faith rewarded, and it was.  If you consider yourself a Batman fan of any kind, it is your absolute duty to watch and spread the word about this documentary.

News Bleed: The “Scream, Vampirella, Scream!” Edition

Scream yet again… The rebooted third season of MTV’s Scream gets a cast and details. Hollywood Reporter

John Carpenter will tell us more Tales for a HalloweeNight this September. 🙂 Bloody Disgusting

The Great Movie Ride at Disney’s Hollywood Studios will close in August. 🙁
Bleeding Cool

James Cameron goes from director to colonial marine with this sweet new Aliens figure. 🙂 Entertainment Weekly

Get some early Ghoul-tide fear with this teaser for Better Watch Out. 🙂 Movie Web

The Dark Tower is only 95 mins long. Seems short for a story told in eight books… Collider

Hack/Slash vs. Vampirella is creeping onto shelves this Halloween. 🙂 Newsarama

And the Queen of Halloween herself, Elvira, is back in kreepy komic form, thanks to the dynamite folks over at Dynamite! 😉 Bleeding Cool

BoXXX Office Awesomeness: Wonder Woman Decapitates Deadpool

(Submitted by Mr. Prince Adam…Thanks, Kinky Ho-mie! 🙂 xoxo)

In the last couple of weeks, Wonder Woman has been getting more and more competition for box office dollars. Cars 3, Transformers: The Last Knight, and Despicable Me 3 have all entered the marketplace, yet Wonder Woman has remained a steady earner. Its biggest competition has arrived in the form of Spider-Man: Homecoming. The film is great and there was no doubt it would be #1 this weekend. To give you an idea of how good it’s doing, the second Spider-Man reboot in 15 years webbed up $117 Million, which is second among Spider- Man films. Worldwide, the film has garnered a total of over $250 Million after just 3 day. Again, the film deserves every bit of money it’s making and you can read my review to see why. However, despite the arrival of the web slinger and losing 313 theatre screens, Wonder Woman is still kicking box office ass! In her 6th weekend of release, Wonder Woman made another $10,135,000 in North America. That brings its domestic total to $368,786,191 after 38 days of release! Wonder Woman has decapitated Deadpool’s entire domestic box office run and sits 2nd on the list of superhero origin films, behind only Sam Raimi’s original Spider- Man film. That amount also means that domestically, Wonder Woman is the second highest grossing superhero film of all time that doesn’t feature Batman, Superman or Spider-Man. Exact foreign figures for the weekend aren’t available, however, internationally the film made another $17,000,000 in the last week, to bring the foreign totals to $377,000,000. Worldwide, the film has secured a grand total of $745,786,191. While Wonder Woman passed Suicide Squad domestically about a week and a half ago, it has now passed it worldwide as well. Wonder Woman now sits 4th on the list of all time box office earners in Warner Brothers history behind only Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2, The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises.  Wonder Woman looks like she will hit at least one more domestic milestone and one more worldwide accolade, which I will report on as it happens, there is no stopping DC Comics’ Amazonian Princess and Queen of the Superheroes!

Ho-stess’s Note: Even Deadpool had to give the Goddess props. 🙂 xo

Comic Book Review – Vampirella #8-10: A murder of Crows

(Submitted by Mr. Prince Adam…Thanks for the Vampi goodness, Superfriend! 🙂 xoxo)

“Vampirella’s back and on the hunt! Dynamite Entertainment’s acclaimed mistress of the dark continues her supernatural adventures, running a gauntlet of murder and despair across an increasingly imperiled globe. A trio of demoness assassins – the Kerasu Shimei (the ‘Crow Sisters’) – have clawed their into our world, and are intent on building a bloody monument to murder, sin and mayhem, and it will take all of Vampirella’s considerable skill to send them screaming back to Hell…” (Dynamite)

This book continues shortly after the one shot from last issue, where Vampirella was recuperating from her wounds from the battle with Dracula and Le Fanu. The book picks up with Vampirella and Sofia on a stakeout, tracking a trio of gruesome murders where three people of shady character have been crucified, with Japanese Kanji drawn in their blood beside them.  Vampirella has been contracted by a mysterious benefactor, who she has yet to reveal to Sofia, Through Vampirella’s inner musing, she reveals that she is keeping her benefactor a secret from Sofia, to not bring her deeper into Vampirella’s world.  Vampirella reveals that as much as she enjoys having a human partner, she wants to get Sofia out of this life because the last time she had a human partner, it didn’t end well for either of them.  In these quieter introspective moments, we start getting a sense of how attached and how much Vampirella cares for Sofia.  As nice as that is, the best parts of these scenes are the insinuation of the mysterious benefactor’s and former human partner.  I’m assuming her ex-partner was Adam Van Helsing, who she had a nightmare about in the previous issues.  As for who her benefactor is, I have no idea.  However, writer Eric Trautmann has me hooked liked a caught fish, waiting to see how both those plot threads play out.  In the first seven issues, Sofia is thrust into this monstrous world. She’s intrigued and captivated by it all.  Now that she’s had time to process it a little more fully, as a reader, you can see her fear and so can Vampirella, even though Sofia tries to hide it.  I love how the writer hasn’t thrust her forward so quickly, to the point where she’s okay with all the weird crap she’s witnessing.  She tries to cope by referencing that everything Vampirella does in this volume fulfills every trope from the horror movie genre.  She uses smart ass commentary to mask her fears.  That’s something I would do.  I hope the writers keep using Sofia as a conduit for the audience.  The other reason I absolutely loved this volume of issues, is due to the fact that the villains of this issue spring directly out of the first volume.  The Three Crow Sisters are Hell-Spawn, who were able to escape hell, when Vampirella’s battle with the Yag-Ath Vermellus, softened the barrier between hell and Earth.  The reason why they have killed those 3 people is because they represent cowardice, the immoral and the deceitful.  This coupled with killing Vampirella, who represents insolence, dishonors her fellow Vampires and is disloyal to them, will serve as a monument to corruption. These acts will tether them firmly to Earth, preventing them from being dragged back to hell. We also learn that the masks they currently wear are temporary tethers to Earth and amplify their strength and speed.  They are very formidable opponents, but she ultimately kills them.  However, not before the big revelation that the Crow sisters know of Vampirella’s true origins, whereas, she herself does not.  She has memories from different origins, which in actuality are different incarnations of the character in the comics, through the years.  In the book continuity, she is not sure what her real past is.  This is similar to what Wonder Woman is experiencing post Rebirth. I like this story hook, as it allows new readers to familiarize themselves with multiple possibilities, without doing too much extra “homework.”

Fabiano Neves returns on art and once again does great work.  This is going to be odd to say of a Vampirella book but the car chase scene looked good.  The art really captures the close quarters and break neck speed of the chase.  Also, the exploded car flip diversion Vampirella creates with the car, looked straight out of a Fast & Furious movie, minus Vin Diesel’s monotone acting, while still keeping the beautiful women.  The female villains wearing Guy Fawkes, V for Vendetta esque masks, looked creepy as hell.  And because the masks aren’t literally V for Vendetta masks, it never feels derivative. Since we essentially had hot vampire vs hot vampire in volume 1, they had to change things up a bit.  This is definitely visually striking.  I loved the visual of the crucified murder victims being on one hand being a darkly colored page, with his blood being the most colored object, while the other two were shown in black and white.  It gave the crime scenes a more mysterious, cold and frightening look and feel to them.  The page where Vampirella and Sofia are scouring around the abandoned farmhouse which is pitch black, and their backs are facing the “camera”/reader, is a quintessential horror moment.  It leaves you expecting and waiting for something bad or scary to happen.  That’s hard for a comic book to pull off, but to be fair, I may have cheated by playing a horror soundtrack as I read this book,

The more I read of Vampirella, the more I like the character and this book.  If you thought the story blew its load too early by using Dracula write off the bat, you’d be wrong.  I’m constantly impressed with every scroll of the digital page.  This character is under appreciated in the comic book world. If you haven’t read this book, or given this character a try, you simply must.  If you don’t, you’re truly doing a disservice to yourself and the genre!

Movie Review: Spider-Man Homecoming

WARNING TO ALL YE WHO ENTERETH: This post contains #SPOILERS. Just scroll on down to the Marvel Universe Live stuffs if that sorta thing upsets ya. 🙂

(Review submitted with all the love by our Superheroic Ho-mie, Prince Adam…Thank you, Super Sir! 🙂 xoxo)

“Several months after the events of Captain America: Civil War, Peter Parker, with the help of his mentor Tony Stark, tries to balance his life as an ordinary high school student in Queens, New York City while fighting crime as his superhero alter ego Spider-Man as a new threat, the Vulture, emerges.” (Sony/Marvel)

After his fantastically energetic extended cameo in Captain America: Civil War, Spider-Man gets his first solo film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.  We get two prologues before hitting “present day”, which as stated, is several months after Civil War.  The first prologue is set shortly after the first Avengers film.  We see Adrian Toomes and his cleanup crew, removing debris and alien technology from the destruction sites. We see that he is so excited by landing this government job, because it puts food on the table for his wife and daughter, as well as providing for his whole crew.  However, they lose the contract when Tony Stark funds the government owned “Damage Control”, to clean up super heroic messes and such. We then see a flash forward to present day, where we learn and see that Adrian Toomes and crew have been stealing weaponry from superhero/supervillain skirmishes, propagating some for themselves, and selling other weaponry to criminals on the black market. Meanwhile, the flashback with Peter Parker/Spider-Man, actually ties into his appearance in Civil War.  The flashbacks are actually self-shot home movies, of his “trip” to Berlin.  You actually see him getting his upgraded suit from Tony Stark via Happy Hogan, as well as P.O.V. shots of the airport battle in Civil War.  These are a way to catch the audience up on where we last saw Peter, but done in an inventive and unique way. These flashbacks are great because they show us our villain’s motivations for what he is doing, and give us a glimpse into how much Peter Parker loves being Spider-Man.

Our main story picks up with Peter Parker being left back in Queen’s and dealing with being a high school student, while also dealing with being a Spider-Man that has to deal with more street level crime.  First of all, I love that this film really stayed in Queen’s as much as it could.  It gave this film a much more intimate feeling over previous installments.  Peter Parker being in high school felt like a naturalistic part of his daily routine, as opposed to being scenes that were shoehorned into the other films because the character was supposed to be 15.  I think it helps, that the actor playing our hero, as well as his classmates were actually teenaged, as opposed to Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield, who both had Wellingitis.  That is to say, they were both 25, cast to play a 15 year old, just as Tom Welling was on Smallville.  I also appreciated that this iteration of Peter Parker wasn’t overtly geeky, or overly hipster, like our previous versions of Peter Parker.  Tom Holland plays an average teenager who takes his high school happenings and everyday situations to the extreme, and makes everything seem like the biggest deal and sometimes the end of the world.  Peter Parker’s best friend in this is Ned played by Jacob Batalon.  The character as played by the actor, is the quintessential best bud and sidekick.  The character is a gamer and total Star Wars fanboy.  Sure, the idea that the two friends spend their after school time building a LEGO Death Star, felt a little all too obvious and convenient, given the Marvel/Disney and Disney/Star Wars connection, but it felt like something two modern day teen fanboys would absolutely do.  There is no spider-bite or death of Uncle Ben in this film.  Instead, that sort of exposition, comes from Ned, once he accidentally discovers Peter Parker is Spider-Man.  We learn of the spider bite and Peter’s abilities through Ned’s endless questions. The exchanges are so naturalistic yet humorous.  There’s a lot of humor in this film, yet never once does it go overboard like Guardians of the Galaxy 2, or feel forced like in the Thor movies.  Liz Allen played by Laura Harrier is the object of Peter Parker’s affection in this film.  She is the popular girl, with a type A personality.  Sure, she and Peter admit that they both liked each other and went to the homecoming dance together but I never felt a spark, or connection between these characters.  No offence to the actress, she did okay with what was asked of her.  Story wise, once we learn that Liz Allen is really Liz Toomes, daughter of the Vulture, any chance the two had at a relationship was gone.  I really did like the character of Michelle played by Zendaya.  This character is very intellectual and is a bit of a loner, playing it off as if she doesn’t really care about hanging out, or being around her classmates. She’s a bit of an introvert, who is lost in her reading. The banter and animosity between she and Peter, gives off a vibe of a love/hate relationship, which definitely hints at something more later on.  Flash Thompson is played by Tony Revolori.  This Flash is not the big hulking jock of a bully like in previous installments, or the comic books.  Instead, he’s more of a verbal insulter, who tries to break Peter down emotionally, not physically.  He’s still a sleaze bag.  The young actor plays that well and you won’t be able to stand him over the course of the film.

Marisa Tomei, returns from her Civil War role of Aunt May.  This Aunt May is more active in the film and in Peter’s life.  We see very simple scenes of them sharing a family dinner.  You even see her helping him learn how to do a tie, teaching him how to dance, and giving him pointers how to treat Liz on their homecoming date.  Marisa Tomei seems to be playing this younger version of Aunt May as a big sister, which makes sense, given the smaller age gap between the two actors.  Though, Marisa Tomei does let the parental Aunt mode kick in, when Peter gets home late and hasn’t been answering his phone. She raises her voice at him, telling him he can’t do that and that between the two of them, that’s not okay.  Even though Uncle Ben isn’t mentioned by name, the tone in her voice and the pain in her face, clearly makes it know, this reaction is a reaction to Ben’s death.  It’s really powerful acting by Marisa Tomei.  As was known when this project was announced and as the trailers went out of their way to point out, Robert Downey Jr. is in this film as Tony Stark/Iron-Man.  He’s at his snarky, fast talking best in this film.  The trailers for this film had me worried that this film would turn into Iron-Man 4, featuring Spider-Man.  However, happily, that’s not the case at all.  We see Iron-Man as a mentor/father figure/ big brother to Peter Parker.  You can tell that Tony Stark has a love for Peter, but in typical Stark fashion, he’ll never outright admit it.  He gave Peter the costume upgrade, to make him a more effective hero but also to keep him safe. Yet still, he tells Peter to stay safe, by sticking close to home grown, street level issues.  The suit upgrades include different shapes and modes of webbing.  The spider symbol is actually a mini drone/ tracker.  There’s also an interrogation mode, which allows Peter to disguise his voice a la Batman, to intimidate his enemies.  There’s a lethal mode, to deal with the extremely dangerous villains and lest we forget, the web wings from the early comic books, which allow him to glide.  I thought all these enhancements by Tony to the costume would minimize Peter Parker’s intelligence but the way Robert Downey Jr. and the film itself handles it, is just Tony being overprotective.  In fact, the film makes a point to show Peter’s intelligence, by showing him secretly brewing his webbing in science class.  We also see Peter disabling the trackers and security measures Tony put into the Spider-Man costume.  Iron-Man does save and assists Spider-Man twice in the film but it never feels like belittling and minimizing the character to me.  His biggest contribution happens of screen, after he realizes that Peter is too reliant on the costume and its gadgets, so he takes it away.  This forces Peter to go back to his homemade costume and find the hero within, which he ultimately does. While this is a Spider-Man film, Tony Stark does seems to resolve some father issues he had in Civil War and there is even a progression of his relationship with Pepper Potts that carries over from that film, which I won’t spoil.

Nearly all of the action beats are tied to our villain, Adrian Toomes, aka the Vulture, played by Michael Keaton.  As hard as it is for me to see Michael Keaton as anything but Batman or Beetlejuice, he is absolutely fantastic as the Vulture.  He’s easily the best villain in the MCU since Loki and he might even be better than Loki.  As I mentioned earlier, the cleanup contract is so important to him, as he’s trying to provide for his family, as are his crew.  When he loses that contract to the joint venture of Stark Industries and the government, he feels pushed aside and stepped on by “the man.”  This is why he hates The Avengers and turns to the black market to sell stolen alien weaponry.  He’s not a one dimensional, over the top, mustache twirling villain, which has become the norm in the MCU. What the script and Michael Keaton convey so well, is that while Adrian Toomes motivations are relatable, his actions remain 100% wrong and the viewer never over sympathizes with him.  This is a mistake the Sam Raimi films made with Dock Ock and Sandman.  They became too sympathetic, to the point where I gave their actions a pass.  While Michael Keaton was great throughout, his best scene happens with Peter Parker when both men are out of costume.  I won’t spoil it but I guarantee it will make your spine tingle. Michael Keaton is particularly chilling in this scene.  The Vulture’s crew introduces other villains, namely the Shocker and the Prowler.  They’re not overly developed. They’re more in service to the Vulture, which I prefer.  The Prowler is of course the uncle of Miles Morales.  There is a small nod to him in the film, which could open the door for Ultimate Spider-Man in the future of the MCU.

In addition to Peter Parker, Tom Holland excels as his costumed alter-ego Spider-Man.  He’s got the inherent goodness and altruistic nature that Tobey Maguire had and he’s got the incessant quipping, which was present in Andrew Garfield’s take on the character.  Mixed in with Tom Holland’s youthful excitement and energy and what you have is the most screen accurate Spider-Man to his comic book counterpart, when it comes to live action portrayals.  The action scenes aren’t just randomly inserted into this film to fill an action quota, instead they service and enhance our hero’s journey.  What’s also unique is that Spider-Man is wearing his fancy superhero attire, in the first two acts, when he is more of an unpolished hero, while wearing his makeshift home-made costume for the third act, when he becomes the full-fledged hero. Usually, it’s the other way around in superhero films.  The early action beats are definitely smaller scale.  We see Spider-Man stopping a bike theft, bank robbery, and we even see him giving an elderly lady directions.  There’s situational humor present in the film when Spider – Man seemingly thwarts a car robbery but in fact, it was just a guy who’d been locked out of his car.  The way the onlookers yelled at Spidey and defended their neighbors innocence, really sold the tight knit community feel of this Queen’s neighborhood.  Also, Stan Lee gets a rare cameo where he speaks, which is nice.  When the Vulture first swoops in grabbing Spider-Man, preventing him from chasing down his crew, the frantic, up-close perspective of the scenes, looks like a brief moment that belongs in a horror film.  The Ferry sequence and the plane fight with The Vulture, as well as the Washington Monument Rescue are the 3 stars of this film, as far as action goes.  The Ferry Sequence has a moment were Spider-Man is trying to hold the Ferry together in one piece, His positioning, actions and pose are eerily similar to Spider-Man 2, when he tries to stop the train from crashing. The scene showcases how effective, yet inexperienced this Spider-Man is.  Seeing Spider-Man crawl up the Washington monument, leap from the top of it, using his web wings to clear a helicopter was so damn epic.  Not quite as epic as Superman’s first flight in Man of Steel, but a pretty close second.  The plane fight between Spider-Man and the Vulture was unlike anything we’ve ever seen in a Spider-Man film.  Not only do they fight inside of the plane but on top of the plane as well.  It took eleven years, but we finally have a scene that surpasses the Superman Returns flight rescue. Kudos goes to the costume designer, who actually made the Vulture’s costume intimidating and menacing, as opposed to looking ridiculous like it does in the comic books.

Spider-Man: Homecoming just feels right.  For the first time in six films, Spider-Man feels like he’s right where he belongs, in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.  The plot and the reason why Spider-Man is taking on the Vulture is very straight forward.  Instead, this movie focuses on getting the characters right.  In this area, the film 100% succeeds.  My previous favourite Spider-Man film was Spider-Man 2, however, I think Spider-Man: Homecoming slightly surpasses it.  In terms of MCU solo films, this ranks 2nd, behind only the first Iron-Man.  In terms of my favourite summer movies, this ranks 2nd behind Wonder Woman and is definitely a MUST SEE film.

Ho-stess’s PS- I saw SMHC last night, and agree wholeblackheartedly with Mr. P’s review…Ho-wever, I saw Marvel Universe Live on Tour today, and have to say THAT is the Marvel production we should all be talking about. #GreatestShowInTheGalaXXXy!! 🙂 xoxo

Kinky Komic Book Review: Spawn #8

(Submitted by the illustrious Mr.Prince Adam…Thanks, Super Friend! 🙂 xoxo)

Billy Kincaid, killed by Spawn, finds himself in Hell with other new arrivals. As they travel toward the Tower, they fall one by one to the horrors of the demonic realm. (Image)


This one-shot is written by comic book legend Alan Moore. Most people love him and think everything he touches is gold. I’m 50/50 on him. I both love his work, and hate some of his work. This book is essentially 22 pages of Billy Kincaid, child killer, traversing his way through hell. He’s joined by three other characters, two of which aren’t important at all, yet are only there for exposition purposes. In the Spawn mythology, or at least this issue written by Alan Moore, hell is composed of 10 different spheres. The characters in the book all have to climb up a tower and are randomly taken to their respective sphere. While I like this idea, some of it is too much of an obvious rip-off of Dante’s Inferno! We don’t get an explanation for all the spheres of hell, just the ones important to this book. The Sixth Sphere of Hell is the soul stealer sphere, which keeps souls as pets. The Tenth Sphere is the Prime Monad. Here, souls are picked to use a circuitry in hell’s macro computer. Then there’s the Eighth Sphere, where Billy Kincaid resides. In this sphere, the inhabitants basically are employees of the devil the same way the Violator was in the first four issues. The way that Billy Kincaid found out about his lot in hell is a fascinating twists. One of the inhabitants of hell travelling with Billy is a little girl. Of course, Mr. Kincaid being a murderous bastard attempts to kill the little girl. However, before he can choke the life out of her, the girl transforms into The Vindicator. The Vindicator introduces Billy Kincaid to this universes version of the devil, who we’ve seen in issues #1-4 of this book. The devil outfits Billy with the K3 – Myrlu, a neural parasite that morphs onto his body and forms a Spawn costume. Why does it do this? Ever since Billy Kincaid arrived in hell, he’s been having recurring nightmares of the way Spawn killed him. I love that even though he is living in hell, his personal hell is reliving his death at Spawn’s hands. After his crimes, he deserves such mental anguish. However, this parasite represents another blatant rip-off by Alan Moore. It’s the Venom symbiote. The other negative of this aspect of the story, aside from Billy Kincaid’s nightmare, we don’t actually get bonafide Al Simmons/Spawn scenes or for that matter, character development.


Once again, Todd McFarlane’s art is fantastic. I really liked the depiction of hell and its different spheres. The first sphere absolutely looked somewhat like classic depictions of the Garden of Eden. If it wasn’t for the drab colour palette and a lack of sunlight, you could almost confuse it for heaven. There’s also a metallic looking sphere of hell and a sphere that looks like the Himalayan Mountains. The striking image of a cold/freezing segment of hell is ironic and intriguing to look at. Despite these different depictions of hell, there’s a spectacular splash page featuring a vintage looking fire and brimstone version of hell, which happens to be the sphere Billy Kincaid resides in. The large tower, dead centre with the winding stairs looks daunting and physically strenuous for the souls to have to climb. This splash page was my favourite piece of art in the book. There’s also a demonic representation of Elvis, complete with devil horns, but it was a relatively small part of a panel, so it isn’t my standout piece of art for this issue. Although, a devilishly looking King of Rock & Roll is always a highlight, no matter how big or small the image. I was pleased to see the continuity in look between the monstrous looks of The Violator and the Vindicator. They look to be part of the same demonic family. Though, the eyes of the Vindicator look a little more bug like, making them slightly creepier. Billy Kincaid in a Spawn costume, looked like the Comic Book Guy from The Simpsons cosplaying as Spawn. I don’t know if they’re going to try and make this character menacing but at this early point, he looks laughable, in a good way.


Personally, I didn’t need another issue about Billy Kincaid, featuring his travels in hell. Furthermore, this book has little to no Spawn at all. Still, there is plenty of world building of hell and this mythologies concepts of demons! Even without Spawn, this issues was far and away better than anything I’ve read in the last two issues of this series.