That is, if you’re in Scotland.
Census records estimate that more than twice as many people of Scottish ancestry live in the United States than in Scotland. Is it the destiny of Scotland to declare its independence from Great Britain? If not now, then when? At the beginning of the day everyone has been waiting for, polls show the likely outcome as a dead heat. We’ll soon learn the answer we’ve all been asking: Will they or won’t they?
Of course there are all sorts of implications to a yes vote, not the least of which is what kind of economic impact it will have on England, on the United States, and the world. If Scotland wants to make a statement to the world this could very well be Scotland’s day. So if you’re one of those Scots that are 16 years old or older and done voting or you’re in the States and can’t vote today, then what better than a brief celebration of all things Scottish? As Mike Myers’ character Stuart Rankin, proprietor of the store “All Things Scottish,” said on Saturday Night Live, “If it’s not Scottish, it’s crap.”
Scotland is well known for its inventors and their inventions. You wouldn’t be reading this website or surfing the Internet at all without the communications technologies that sprouted from Alexander Graham Bell’s telephone. John Logie Baird would invent the first television. Scots invented the refrigerator and the flush toilet, the kaleidoscope and the lawnmower. And–shazam–James Goodfellow invented ATMs so we can get money to buy stuff on nearly any street corner.
Our future is defined in part by the adventures of a Scot in space–James Doohan’s Commander Montgomery “Scotty” Scott from Star Trek, an engineering miracle worker who exemplifies Scottish ingenuity. And of course, there’s James Bond, the character, whose parents were Scottish, and Sir Sean Connery, the Scottish actor, the most famous Bond, and a supporter of today’s “yes” vote.
Review by C.J. Bunce
Starting next Wednesday, September 17, 2014, the Bionic Woman is back. This time, in her third comic book series in the past two years, following Buffy the Vampire Slayer, The X-Files, and The Six Million Dollar Man, it’s a continuation of the original television series, right where the series last left our bionic heroine.
Dynamite Comics is publishing the new series written by Brandon Jerwa, with interior art by David T. Cabrera. Issue #1 features cover art by Sean Chen and Ivan Nunes and a photo incentive cover featuring Lindsay Wagner as Jaime Sommers.
So how does Issue #1 fare?
They have the introduction right, presumably to begin each issue like an episodes of the series. As to moving the series forward in continuity of the era, the tech gets a slight–but only slight–upgrade, with walkie-talkies replaced with wireless comm-links in Jaime’s ears. Dr. Rudy Wells and Oscar Goldman are back, too. So the setting checks out.
Still an entire month to wait until Arrow returns to the CW Network, and we’re got another great trailer released this weekend. The best part of this latest trailer? We hear the days of flashbacks to the island are going away, to be swapped out with Oliver Queen’s secret past honing his skills in Asia, and we see some of that here.
And the trick of showing Oliver finally hooking up with Felicity Smoak last season may have set fans up for a real relationship this season. Black Canary will return and sister Laurel Lance looks to be finally getting her life back. And what’s more fun than seeing former Superman Brandon Routh taking on a new recurring role in the DC Universe as Ray Palmer?
Check out this new trailer for Season Three of one of our favorite series, and maybe the best superhero series ever, Arrow:
Is there something not quite right about a new G.I. Joe series that features a Joe team finally headed up by Scarlett, that is also titled “The Fall of G.I. Joe”? We’re guessing the juxtaposition of these two elements wasn’t intended to be some kind of causal thing. Instead we’re focused on plenty of cool covers released by IDW Publishing for the series, which is expected to ship its first issue in September.
G.I. Joe: The Fall of G.I. Joe will be written by Karen Traviss with interior art by Steve Kurth. Several covers will be available, from artists including Cliff Chiang and Jeffery Veregge.
Check out these covers from the new monthly. The cover style from Veregge makes us wish Phil Noto or Kevin Dart was also working on this series, and maybe provide some variant covers. Still, they do look like something we might have seen back in 1972 on the box covers for large-sized G.I. Joe action figures.
Don’t you just love it when a plan comes together?
What’s better than when all the new TV series line up just right? This coming Fall the networks have at least one great genre series every day of the week returning, including several new supernatural crime dramas: the CW’s Flash, ABC’s Forever, BBC America’s Intruders, Fox’s Gotham, and NBC’s Constantine. Well, the networks have at least one genre show per day except Thursdays, so it’s not exactly “just right.” But we could use a day off from TV anyway. And isn’t that what DVRs are for? Strangely enough, nearly all of these series have a supernatural crime element of some sort, with plenty of superheroes and time travel, too. Interesting.
Below we have the best of the Fall line-up with trailers for all but NBC’s Grimm.
Haven, Season 5 and its 26 brand new episodes begin Sunday, September 11, 2014, on the Syfy Channel. Here is a preview of the new season:
Sleepy Hollow, Season Two, begins Monday, September 22, 2014, on Fox, following the new Gotham series. Here’s a trailer for the new season of Sleepy Hollow:
We have a variety of previews today, courtesy of Dark Horse Comics and Dynamite Comics. New series include a monthly based on the TV series, Bob’s Burgers. Another features a tie-in to the Alien universe, with Prometheus: Fire and Stone. A third series based on NBC’s Grimm begins this week with Grimm: Portland, Wu. And Matt Wagner’s anti-hero Grendel finds his way to 1930s New York in Grendel vs The Shadow.
Tomorrow, Dynamite is publishing the first Bob’s Burgers comic book series. Based on the animated show, it will be written by Rachel Hastings, Mike Olsen, Justin Hook, and Jeff Drake, with art by Frank Forte, Brad Rader, Bernard Derriman, and Tony Gennaro. And Grimm: Portland, Wu is a one-shot written by Marc Gaffen and Kyle McVey, with art by Daniel Govar.
From Dark Horse, Grendel vs. The Shadow features a story and art by Matt Wagner. Grendel will find its way to store shelves September 3, 2014. Also from Dark Horse, Prometheus: Fire and Stone, with a story by Paul Tobin and art by Juan Ferreyra, hits comic book stores September 10, 2014.
Check out the four previews, after the break.
Review by C.J. Bunce
Somewhere around the halfway mark of the new movie Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, a fun action flick comes together. If you can get to that point without falling asleep. With the modern special effects this movie should not have needed to have been compared to the original 1990 film version. Unfortunately the slow start and less-than-appealing villains keep this one from the top tier of this summer’s would-be franchise blockbusters.
So what’s worth the admission price? First off, Megan Fox. Not for a second does she flinch from a strong portrayal of April, the well-known friend of the Turtles. She delivers even the silliest lines as if she’s playing serious drama. And the film is better for it. Although the perpetually young looking actress may be typecasting herself with films like the original Transformers and this similar action genre entry, she may also be simply carving out a niche she’s darned good at.
The biggest failing of Iron Man 2 was the “annoying guy” played over and over in movies by Sam Rockwell. That same caricature is in TMNT, but played by Will Arnett, who I have not seen before simply because I don’t watch his admittedly popular series including 30 Rock and Arrested Development. Here he offers what seems like an impersonation of the Night Shift and Batman era Michael Keaton, and it’s some funny stuff.
Battlestar Galactica in 1880? As a graphic steampunk story? Steampunk Cylons? You bet. Today, Dynamite Comics launches its new series Steampunk Battlestar Galactica 1880, taking an alternate universe look at the popular 1978 and 2004 sci-fi television series characters. And for even more sci-fi fun, our favorite borg is back this month in a new issue of The Six Million Dollar Man Season Six–with some familiar “faces”.
If classic pulp noir reads are your thing, you’ll want to check out our preview of the new Dynamite Comics series Justice, Inc. The Shadow is back, this time with The Avenger and Doc Savage.
After the break, take a look at previews for each of these new books, courtesy of Dynamite Comics, available at comic book shops everywhere today.
Steampunk Battlestar Galactica 1880, Issue #1, features a story by Tony Lee with art by Aneke. The Six Million Dollar Man Season Six, Issue #5, is written by James Kuhoric and art by Juan Antonio Ramirez. Justice, Inc., Issue #1, has a story by Michael Uslan and artwork by Giovanni Timpano.
Dynamite Comics’ The Bionic Man series, especially Issues #17-26, was among the best comic book reading of 2013. They are now available in a trade paperback: The Bionic Man Volume Three: End of Everything. Featuring a story by Aaron Gillespie, with art by Ed Tadeo and Rey Villegas, colors by Thiago Ribeiro, letters by Simon Bowland, and covers by Mike Mayhew with other regular edition covers and variants by prolific Dynamite Comics artists Jonathan Lau and Ed Tadeo.
The Bionic Man is a great read and recommended for comic book fans. It features Aaron Gillespie’s storytelling, which we lauded on our borg.com Best of 2013 list last year. It also has the whole package from cover to cover–story, art, covers, humor, action, and fun. We won’t re-state what we said in our review last year–you can read that here. Enough of the origin stories that bogs down superhero books, this Steve Austin was able to get out there and do something.
The series featured some of our all-time favorite cover art, with a cover run on Issues #17-22 by The Star Wars artist Mike Mayhew. Mayhew created a new, cool, young look for Steve Austin, who sported the classic track suit updated for a modern audience and fashion sense. His Issue #19 cover has Steve holding a car over his head, and you get to really see the strength. Probably his best cover is for Issue #20, an inspiring cover which reminds me of one of my favorite paintings of President Kennedy.
Did you miss out on San Diego Comic-Con this year? Taking the sting out of missing the big annual show, both Gentle Giant and Entertainment Earth are making their SDCC 2014 exclusives available to everyone. Although a few items have already sold out, there are plenty of great busts and action figures that will provide something of interest for every sci-fi, superhero, and fantasy fan. Click on any image above or below to go to the store listing for prices and availability.
Number One on our list of the coolest action figures of the year is the above variant Predator figure from Funko’s ReAction retro-action figure line. We’ve seen one of these up close and not only is this a nicely constructed figure with great packaging, it looks like the character cloaked in the film and it comes with green blood splatter applied to the figure and even the box–splatter that was part of the plot of the movie and not just a sales gimmick. This figure sold out fast, but don’t worry, you can pre-order now for its re-release. After the break check out several variant retro-Kenner figures only available for a limited time, including Firefly’s Jayne Cobb and his famous hat, a Malcolm Reynolds with Browncoat. Even new figures from The Twilight Zone of William Shatner and Burgess Meredith!
The high point of the Gentle Giant exclusives is this great Rocket Raccoon bust that we previewed earlier at borg.com. You can just hear Rocket ranting about something, gritting his teeth as he rescues the Guardians of the Galaxy team.
For retro fans, Gentle Giant has three other SDCC exclusives for sale. Check out this two-foot tall Alien figure–inspired by the unreleased Kenner figure from the 1980s:
And how about the latest in Gentle Giant’s line of jumbo-sized classic Kenner Star Wars action figures, one of Kenner’s best, the AT-AT Driver from The Empire Strikes Back: