Where DC Entertainment has been limping along in its efforts to bring superheroes to the big screen in recent years, it has ruled the airwaves on network television thanks to the CW Network and the creative team of Greg Berlanti, Marc Guggenheim, and Andrew Kreisberg. What Zack Snyder and Christopher Nolan have failed to capture–the same interesting, exciting, rich stories, character development, action, and fun of comic books–these guys have delivered, tapping into what fanboys and fangirls want most.
Are their shows perfect? Definitely not. The budget for television series doesn’t allow the freedom of big budget movies. The stories adapted to the small screen have also changed many things from the comics and when the characters themselves have fans of multiple versions of each character… well, you can’t be all things to all people. Yet, DC on TV has fared better than on film. We’d all rather see the relationships build between superheroes, even if they are the B-team superheroes, than costly explosion-filled disaster movies posing as superhero stories. Yes, we’re talking about you, Man of Steel, Batman v Superman, and The Dark Knight Rises.
The CW Network has cornered the market on the best of DC on TV. And this Fall with the addition of Supergirl from ABC, we now will have a superhero series every night from DC and Warner Bros. If DC really had its act together it would see that Fox’s Gotham switched from Monday nights to Fridays, for a full weekday schedule, but that doesn’t look like it will happen.
This past week, to preview the new season and what characters we can look forward to, including–at last–Martian Manhunter (the last remaining key Justice League character to make it to the modern live-action DC Universe) the CW released a follow-up to last year’s Superhero Fight Club video. Check it out:
Are you a fan of Mattel’s Masters of the Universe and ThunderCats from the 1980s? Were they a part of your afternoon cartoon line-up? Did you pit your action figures of He-Man and Lion-O, in an epic battle against Skeletor and Mumm-Ra on your parents’ living room floor? If so, a new series from DC Comics and Mattel may be your next favorite comic book.
An outgrowth of the Big Jim action figures and toy line, Masters of the Universe toys first appeared in 1981. Four years later we met the ThunderCats in a Marvel Comics series and animated television series. Flash forward thirty years and Mattel’s Rob David and Lloyd Goldfine have written a limited series bringing together the two worlds with interior artwork and covers supplied by Freddie E. Williams II. The artist had a big year with another big crossover, his Batman/Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series, a huge hit for fans of both franchises and for DC Comics.
Advance publicity for the series gives us a look at what’s to come: In his eternal desire to destroy the mighty ThunderCats, the evil Mumm-Ra quests for a weapon that can rival the legendary Sword of Omens: He-Man’s Sword of Power! But his dimension-spanning scheme launches a cataclysmic crisis that will, for the first time ever, unite Lion-O, Cheetara, Tygra, Panthro, WilyKit and WilyKat with He-Man, Battlecat, Teela, Man-At-Arms and the rest of the Masters of the Universe.
This week the six-issue series begins. We have a preview of the series below for borg.com readers.
A new line of Suicide Squad action figures from the Funko ReAction line is coming soon from the toy line that has provided fans of the 1970s Kenner action figures everything from Jaws to Gremlins and Alien, from Big Trouble in Little China to Back to the Future and Terminator, and from The Nightmare Before Christmas to CW’s Arrow. Check here at borg.com for a look back to many of Funko’s variety of licenses.
Unlike Funko’s more popular bobblehead Pop! line of toys, these 3 3/4-inch figures, which have added articulation at elbows and knees to the classic format, can be played with in conjunction with countless other toy lines from the past 40 years. But mainly this means the many ships and environment toys from the classic Star Wars toys from Kenner. Want to see Harley Quinn rescue the Joker on the bridge of the Death Star? Want to see Batman take out Greedo in the Cantina at Mos Eisley? This new collection of figures can help you make it happen.
Entertainment Earth has scooped Funko’s own corporate online catalog, posting for sale seven of what may be an even wider collection of characters from the movie. These are available now for pre-order. The first release will feature Harley Quinn, The Joker, Katana, Enchantress, Dead Shot, and Killer Croc–plus a Batman figure. We don’t know yet whether we’ll see Funko release figures for El Diablo, Amanda Waller, Captain Boomerang, Rick Flag, or Slipknot.
Click on any of the individual images above and below to see more detail on these figures and get your pre-order in at Entertainment Earth.
CW’s The Flash proved to be the best comic book adaptation to any size of screen in 2015, and it looks like it could be heading that way in 2016, too. Where Arrow soared into the lead spot in prior years, The Flash and its less dark story unfolded in its second season as the cast began to gel. This year the all-out fun circumstances marked it as a favorite among fans of the source material–comic books.
As The Flash–which ended with a great appearance of 1980s Flash actor John Wesley Shipp donning The Flash suit once again–returns for Season 3, Grant Gustin’s Barry Allen is entering the realm of a loose tie-in to DC’s “Flashpoint” series story. As previewed at San Diego Comic-Con last weekend, that means Barry Allen finally does what we all would probably do–go back in time and prevent the death that changed his life. But what will this action, this manipulation of the timeline, mean for the future, and his relationships with all those around him?
For one we get to see Wally West as The Flash. But what else? Check out this preview for The Flash Season 3:
It looks like the great preview that accompanied the premiere of Star Trek Beyond this week. Suicide Squad finally has a great trailer that should entice everyone to climb aboard, courtesy of DC Entertainment and Warner Bros. at San Diego Comic-Con Saturday. With brief but good looks at each of the key characters it is now established that this is definitely a take on the classic war movie The Dirty Dozen–the original and ultimate film about a band of prisoner misfits setting out to save the world.
This time we get a good look at each of the Worst Heroes Ever and for a motley group of villains, they’re looking pretty good. And Warner Bros. is having a big day with its movie preview releases at Comic-Con.
Adam Beach (Everwood, Hawaii Five-0), is Slipknot, Jai Courtney (Jack Reacher, Terminator: Genisys) is Captain Boomerang, Cara Delevingne is Enchantress, Karen Fukuhara is Katana, Joel Kinnaman (RoboCop) is Rick Flagg, Margot Robbie (Pan Am, The Wolf of Wall Street) is Harley Quinn, Will Smith (Men in Black, I, Robot) is Deadshot, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje (Lost, Thor: The Dark World) is Killer Croc, and they star along with Jared Leto as The Joker in the comic book take on The Dirty Dozen, as a group of super villains are released from prison to complete a hero’s mission. And look for Jay Hernandez as Chato Santana aka El Diablo, a character created by our pals Jai Nitz, Phil Hester, and Ande Parks in 2008’s excellent six-issue series El Diablo: The Haunted Horseman (be sure to check it out at Amazon.com here if you haven’t read it yet).
So this is it–the final trailer for Suicide Squad:
Although it still has that same look and feel of the recent Man of Steel franchise, at long last DC Entertainment and Warner Bros. revealed the first trailer for Justice League at San Diego Comic-Con this afternoon. And of course, for better or worse, it’s down one superhero. Not Superman… no Green Arrow. And no Black Canary. Just sayin’.
Next year’s Justice League is another Zack Snyder creation, hitting theaters next year along with Wonder Woman, previewed here at borg.com earlier today. Although Jared Leto is rumored to be on of the villains in the film, we haven’t seen any villains yet confirmed.
Old timers should know this Justice League (sans the “America”) is consistent with the more recent incarnations of the superfriends squad. So we have Ben Affleck returning as Batman, Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman, and Jason Momoa as Aquaman, Ezra Miller as the new Barry Allen/The Flash, and Ray Fisher as Cyborg. Looks like we have a new borg variant to be inducted into the borg Hall of Fame this year.
Straight from Comic-Con, check out this trailer for Justice League:
How much marketing do you need to advertise a movie anyway? For DC Entertainment, when your The Dirty Dozen-style ensemble cast movie features twelve distinct lead characters, that apparently means you role out 24 new posters. That’s what happened this week–DC released two sets of character studies, one rancid candy cereal poster, and one comic booky explosive cast poster, giving fans of the team and movie poster collectors a new collect ’em all project.
Or you can view them all in high quality digital format below.
For cosplayers, it’s the first really good view of costume details. Anyone else have the urge to Photoshop some extra characters (or friends) into the big cast poster?
Here’s the roster: Adam Beach (Everwood, Hawaii Five-0), as Slipknot, Jai Courtney (Jack Reacher, Terminator: Genisys) as Captain Boomerang, Cara Delevingne as Enchantress, Karen Fukuhara as Katana, Joel Kinnaman (RoboCop) as Rick Flagg, Margot Robbie (Pan Am, The Wolf of Wall Street) as Harley Quinn, Will Smith (Men in Black, I, Robot) as Deadshot, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje (Lost, Thor: The Dark World) as Killer Croc, and Jay Hernandez as El Diablo. Viola Davis plays Amanda Waller, head of the agency A.R.G.U.S., and Jared Leto will play The Joker.
Check out all 24 of the new Suicide Squad posters after the break:
The last vestiges of The New 52 seem to be fleeting in light of DC Comics’ Rebirth superhero universe reset. Back in 2011 we at borg.com were reading and reviewing every monthly from the New 52 we could get our hands on. One of the most compelling and creative of those series was Justice League Dark, a further spin-off from the likes of Justice League of America, Justice League Europe, Justice League International, Justice League and JLA.
Justice League Dark was, as the title suggests, a darker band of superpowered characters from the DCU. Spanish artist Mikel Janin was tasked with re-imagining the look of these characters, and he pulled it off brilliantly. We interviewed Mikel about the new look here at borg.com back in March 2012. The JLD included Zatanna, Constantine, Deadman, Shade, Madame Xanadu, Swamp Thing, and the Enchantress, and more as they would emerge throughout the series’ short 40 issue run.
Guillermo del Toro had been involved for a few years with a live action version of the JLD that never seemed to spring away from the development stage. Now because of a feature listing on the Blu-ray from Batman: The Killing Joke, an animated version is likely further along than had been previously disclosed by DC.
The first ever DC Comics animated movie to be rated “R” is coming to a theater near you next month in advance of its home edition release. Batman: The Killing Joke will be screened Monday, July 25 at 7:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. local time at select theaters across the country. Fathom Events has teamed up with Warner Bros., and DC Entertainment for this rare opportunity to see the adaptation of the graphic novel by Alan Moore and Brian Bolland.
Batman: The Killing Joke reunites Batman: The Animated Series executive producer Bruce Timm and voice actors Kevin Conroy and Mark Hamill reprising their roles as Batman and the Joker. It co-stars Tara Strong (Teen Titans, Batman: Arkham games) as Barbara Gordon/Batgirl and Ray Wise (Twin Peaks, RoboCop) as Commissioner Gordon.
Experience a special introduction from Mark Hamill plus a never-before-seen documentary about how Hamill was cast in this project and what the role means to him as an actor and a fan. The event will conclude with a special behind-the-scenes look at how the Joker’s memorable, yet disturbing song and dance number was recreated for the film. Based on the acclaimed DC graphic novel of the same name, Batman: The Killing Joke takes a journey into the dark psyche of the Clown Prince of Crime – from his humble beginnings as a struggling comedian to his fateful encounter with Batman that changes both of their lives forever. Years later, and now escaped from Arkham Asylum, The Joker devises a plan to prove that one bad day can make anyone as insane as he is – setting his sights on Commissioner Gordon. It’s up to the Dark Knight to put a stop to The Joker’s latest scheme and save one of Gotham City’s finest. Following a gripping prologue introducing Barbara Gordon’s heroic adventures alongside Batman as Batgirl, Batman: The Killing Joke stays true to the authentic tale that has held fans’ imaginations for nearly three decades – spotlighting the birth of a Super-Villain, the fortitude of a Super Hero and the punchline that will leave you speechless.
Get thee to the comic book store tomorrow!
It’s that time of year again. It’s time for the annual pilgrimage to your local comic book store for Free Comic Book Day, this Saturday, May 7, 2016. Dozens of new books are available this year, for kids of all ages. Like these:
Alan Tudyk has a new comic book out called Spectrum. He talks about it here:
And despite what you hear below from that familiar guy from Reading Rainbow, most comic book stores will let you select more than a few issues, not just one: