Wednesday, February 24, 2010

(My fantasy) Avengers Assemble! Third reveal

"I'm strictly a bow and arrow type."


Ladies and gentlemen, my third reveal: Clint Barton, the original Hawkeye. While not an original member, he is considered one of the essential Avengers by many. He started out his comic career as a villain until he reformed and had Iron Man back his sponsor and was elected to the team. I'm a big fan of this character and while he's taken a few detours from his purple and blue moniker (Ronin), he'll be back when the Avengers reform in Marvel's Heroic Age.

He's a skilled marksman, tactician, and personality up the wazoo. He's a great team member and asset to whoever's flag he's bearing.

Welcome aboard, Clint.

Monday, February 22, 2010

(My fantasy) Avengers Assemble! Second Reveal....

The second member of my fantasy Avengers is...

Genis-Vell/Marvel's Captain Marvel/Photon

Probably the most cosmic character in the 616 Universe aside from Silver Surfer and the likes of him, comes Genis-Vell. He's basically Green Lantern and then some. There are many incarnations of this character, from a Kree warrior to a Green Lantern equivalent, to a cosmic champion that is one of a kind. I've always liked this design and just really dug the character. I mean, at one time he was stuck inside Rick Jone's body.

He's no longer Captain Marvel, but Photon. His current costume is alright, but a little too Starman for my taste.

I still think his powers and attitude are what a good team needs, especially on an Avengers team.

Friday, February 19, 2010

(My fantasy) Avengers Assemble! First Reveal

Avengers, Assemble!

The first member of my fantasy Avengers roster is...

The Mighty Thor.

I couldn't think of a more marvelous power house that comes from the House of Ideas. There's might, magic, and majesty. Sure the JLA has Superman (just not lately), and to think you have a god on your side probably boosts your ego a bit. I would imagine so, anyways. Thor's book now is simply fantasy as it's best and I also couldn't think of a better leader of my team than the Odinson. He's been seen in numerous versions of the Avengers team, also serving as a founding member.

It's easy to see why I would choose the God of Thunder here.

(Art provided by George Marston of If This Be Sketchblog fame, and Heir to the Realm of Majesty)

Thursday, February 18, 2010

(My fantasy) Avengers Assemble!

"And there came a day, a day unlike any other, when Earth's mightiest heroes and heroines found themselves united against a common threat. On that day, the Avengers were born — to fight the foes no single super hero could withstand! Through the years, their roster has prospered, changing many times, but their glory has never been denied! Heed the call, then — for now, the Avengers Assemble!"

— Prologue from The Avengers

You might seen the teasers Marvel has released lately about their "Secret Avengers". I have to admit, even though I lean towards more DC nowadays, I am intrigued at this line up. I mean, I'm already going to bite once the Avengers book hits because it's nice to see Clint Barton in the purple and blue as Hawkeye.

So, I thought it would be fun just to come up with my own "Secret" Avengers.

Eight members, each a piece to the puzzle that I think would be a perfect Avengers team. The Avengers have seen dozens of shake ups and roster changes than most people can remember. There is an idea of who the Avengers are and a "classic" roster, much like how people have an idea of who the JLA are and who it consists of.

There is a certain truth to that, but I think of it as Marvel's team that should be it's front line, and not just some A-list assortment. There should be might, magic, cunning minds to fight off aliens, wizards, mutants, terrorists, gods, and anything you can throw at them.

So for the next week, I will reveal a single member of my dream Avengers team. George Marston from If This Be Doomsday fame has helped me out with the imagery. Guesses and assumptions are always welcome.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Let's talk about chicks, man -- Jem (and to a lesser extent the Holograms)


Once a popular animated TV series that ran for three seasons from 1985-1988 is still considered a staple in 80's cartoons. Probably the most interesting thing about Jem is that it was created by a woman (not surprising, but there's a twist), Christy Marx who had worked on Transformers, and GI JOE, two of the most manly, boy-driven shows in existence. Jem was actually a collaboration of Marvel Comics, Hasbro and Sunbow Productions (studio of the other aforementioned manly shows, as well as the Pryde of the X-Men pilot).

The plot was a little more complicated than I had thought. Then again, as a boy growing up in the 80's, Jem was put on the shelf compared to the Super Powers Team and Thundercats.

From Wikipedia:

The central "secret" of the series is that Jem is in fact the alter ego of Jerrica Benton, owner/manager of Starlight Music, who adopts this persona with the help of Synergy, a holographic computer designed to be the ultimate visual entertainment synthesizer (built by her father, Emmett Benton, who left it to her on his death), to acquire more money to not only support Jerrica's own company, Starlight Music, but to also support the Starlight Foundation for Girls, a foster program founded by Jacque Benton, the mother of Jerrica and Kimber Benton.

If there are two things I remember about the show though, they would be the intro song and the fashion sense. Interesting note about the famous theme song though, it's not the song used in the first episode. Yeah, I'm glad they changed that. But just watch that first part of the episode. We are introduced to the arch-nemesis band in the most hilarious way and Eric Raymond is so over the top, calling him a threat would be laughable. And how Jerrica is introduced to Synergy is borderline creepy.

I remember Jem being the alternative to Barbie...or maybe that should be alternative Barbie. Have you seen the dolls? Between the Holograms, Rainbow Brite and some of She-Ra's gal pals, everything looked like they were going to or coming from a rave.

There have been talks about a revival of sorts. Hasbro has shown some legal activity in maintaining their trademarks and intellectual property, leading some fans to believe they may be reviving the line via the trademark renewal for "Dolls, doll clothing and doll accessories; board games and jigsaw puzzles," "publications, namely coloring books, activity books, comic books, paperback and hard cover story books, story books and pre-recorded books on tape all sold as a unit, and magazines in the field of dolls and animated characters," as well as entertainment vehicles like TV shows.

Creator Christy Marx has long expressed a desire to make a modern day revival of the animated series, but stated in a 2004 interview that there are a great deal of complications concerning the rights to the Jem properties.

"I would like to see that happen. I don't want to go into a lot of detail, but the whole rights situation for Jem is very, very complicated. Believe me, if there were a simple straightforward way to do it, it would be done. But there are some very big complications that are in the way at the moment."

A while back, has reported that Hasbro has recently re-acquired distribution rights to the Sunbow library of Hasbro Classics, which includes Jem. This has led to speculation that Jem may be re-released on DVD in the future. Possibly on blu-ray?

Also, you have to think about with the success of GI JOE and Transformers, there could be room for a JEM movie or at least a new cartoon. They could tour with Dethklok.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Zatanna by Mario Chavez

I don't have an image sans the water mark, but I am very to happy to own this.


Funny. Truly funny.

also funny: Palin calls out this guy for saying retards, but doesn't when Rushd drops the tard-bomb in every other breath. Oh you Conservatives, you crack me up.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Interview with Chuck Dixon about The Wheel of Time

The Wheel of Time turns, and Ages comes to pass...

For those unfamiliar with Dynamite's newest acquisition, Robert Jordan's The Wheel of Time, it is an epic medieval fantasy series that evokes Arthurian legend and Celtic myths with a touch of Star Wars. Sadly, the original author of series died in 2007, but luckily left the finale in good hands. Rand al'Thor is a sheepherder whose life is changed forever after meeting the mysterious Moiraine and her Warder, Lan. His destiny could bring the end of the Dark One, but possibly the end of the world as well. Now, as Dynamite continues the adaptation of the series, we spoke with writer Chuck Dixon about his history with the project, and what to expect going forward.

Newsarama: Chuck, are you a fan of The Wheel of Time yourself?

Chuck Dixon: I wasn’t before I started this project. I was initially offered [the prequel] New Spring on the strength of the adaptation of The Hobbit I had done for Del Rey.

Nrama: So let's talk about the prologue, "Dragonmount". That issue already came out, are you going to continue with the series from that issue or do another relaunch?

Dixon: That’s a question for Dynamite to answer. If I were to guess, I’d say they’ll include it in whatever collection is down the road. The material is Dynamite’s to do with what they will. No need to re-launch as the collected hardcover or paperback is the goal here.

Nrama: With such an epic story, what has been the greatest challenge so far?

Dixon: These books are pure prose. They are not written with comic book adaptation in mind (unlike Dean Koontz who writes in a form friendlier to comics). There’s lots of internal dialogue and character exploration via dialogue. What I have to do is telescope a bit a re-order some events to balance action and plot advancement. Sometimes I have to contort the prose a bit to do this. Like, if a past battle is mentioned in passing I’ll create a scene flashing back to it. I don’t break what’s written but bring more visual weight to what Jordan was evoking. Eye candy is important in project like this. Fans want to see this world.

Robert Jordan was very forgiving considering some of the cut and paste I had to do to make it comics. But I was always mindful to keep 99% of his dialogue and descriptions as written. The readers want his work not mine.

Nrama: Since Jordan wrote in quite detailed paragraphs, are you going to do EVERYTHING from the books?

Dixon: I believe that Dynamite is continuing the program as it was started so this will be a very close adaptation of the novels. Not quite page-for-page but close. So, it’ll be a literal translation and include as much of the book as we can.

Nrama: Do you feel like you're leaving anything out?

Dixon: Not so far. It’s all in there. Of course, everyone has a scene or character that’s their favorite and there’s a chance I’ll either leave them out or not place the desired emphasis on them. I’m still bummed that Beorn didn’t make it into the Lord of the Rings movies.

Nrama: How do you think you're going to handle some of the more adult stuff later on? I mean it gets pretty sexual especially with Mat and Tylin.

Dixon: I look forward to some telephone conference calls on this. But there’s ways to handle this kind of material without getting pornographic.

Nrama: Is there a favorite character you've liked writing so far?

Dixon: I fell in love with Moiraine when I was writing New Spring.
Currently I’m writing lots of Rand so he’s the guy I’m identifying with the most currently.

Nrama: Are you using the The World of Robert Jordan's The Wheel of Time guide, or what we fans call the "Big White Book" for the imagery or are you creating your own for certain things?

Dixon: I’m using everything. I’m using stuff you’ve never seen and no fan’s been privy to. The imagery I leave to the artists and editors and estate. It’s thin ice creating lasting imagery of characters and locations that so many readers have imagined on their own. My end is pacing and dramatization.

Nrama: Will the art team stay the same? Will there be a consistent artist you're being paired with or will it be a rotating team?

Dixon: Nick at Dynamite is still sorting all of this deal out. Once he does, I’m looking forward to improved communication as well as seeing the art as it progresses. The same working relationship I have with Dynamite on the other stuff I’m doing with them. You know, being allowed to proof the finished product and getting jpegs of the art. Believe it or not, I still have no copies of the comics published up to now.

Nrama: What are you looking forward to writing? I can't wait to see how the invasion of the Stone of Tear comes to life on the page.

Dixon: Long, extended action scenes are what I’m waiting for. That’s where I get to stretch my storytelling muscles. There’s lots of tremendous action set pieces coming up.