Friday, August 28, 2015


Ever since the first Avengers film came out and was more successful than anyone could have imagined, the comic books have been trying their best to catch up. So, every couple of years Marvel "relaunches" most of their comics back to #1. They do this so that they can catch a new reader's attention. The thinking is that you're more likely to pick up a new comic book if it starts at #1 rather than #523. I don't really buy that though. My first issue of Batman was #608.

And so my obsession began . . .
Either way, it is exciting when the comics are relaunched, retooled, rebooted, whatever you want to call it. The new comics get me excited. It's a chance for writers and artists I like to tackle new characters or maybe characters that they haven't worked on in a long time. Since it's writers that I like, it's a chance for me to check out new characters that I may not have been interested in before. Also, when Marvel relaunches their comics they give their best writers characters that are about to star in the movies. It's a great way to get new and current fans excited for their upcoming films.
I'd like to share with you the comics that I'm definitely looking forward to reading this fall. I'll be the first to admit that it's all pretty much mainstream stuff but hey . . . I like that stuff! So here we go!

It's strange to think that before Brian Michael Bendis came along in the early 2000s, the Avengers were not considered to be Marvel's flagship title. He realized it and helped make the Avengers a great book again. After he left, Jonathan Hickman made the book . . . well it was a Hickman book. You either love it or hate it (I was the latter). Now, Marvel is relaunching the Avengers under the guidance of Mark Waid. Waid is one of my all time favorite writers. He's written the Flash, Kingdom Come, and the most recent run on Daredevil. What is most exciting about the newest roster of Avengers is that they are the most diverse. Thor is a woman, Captain America and Spider-Man are black, Ms. Marvel is Pakistani, the Vision is a robot (and British I guess if you think of him as Paul Bettany), Nova is Latino, and Iron Man is white. For the first time in Avengers history, only one of the characters is a white male. That's pretty interesting. What's also interesting is that three of the Avengers are teenagers. It gives the book a legacy type of feel to it. The older generation training the younger one. I'm excited to see what crazy adventures they will have.


Here is a good example of a great writer, Jason Aaron, on an underused character. Aaron was the inspired choice to launch Thor: God of Thunder back in 2012. He took the book to new and interesting places. I loved it a lot. Then he brought on the new, female Thor last year. Also he's writing the Star Wars comic. And it's amazing! I have no doubt that his Dr. Strange book is going to be exciting and unpredictable. I won't lie to you though, I'm not a huge fan of Chris Bachalo's art. In some cases I can grow to like an artist on a title. Sometimes it just takes the right character or the right take to bring out the best in them. That might be the case here (after all that image above is awesome). Still, I'm sure that I will enjoy this book. I've never gotten a Dr. Strange comic before . . . 


I have a love/hate relationship with the X-Men comic books. Every now and then I find one that I like. More often than not though, the books fall into the trap of introducing too many new characters and reintroducing older characters and it's just . . . too . . . much! I love the X-Men movies and the cartoons. This comic looks to be in the same vein in the sense that it will only follow a core group of characters. That appeals to me. The other major appeal is the writer - Jeff Lemire. He's become one of my favorite writers in recent years. He wrote a great Green Arrow run not too long ago (I've mentioned it on my wish lists for Arrow season four). Plus the cast is really intriguing to me - Storm, Jean, Nightcrawler, Magik, Colossus, Iceman, and Old Man Logan (more on him later). That's a bad ass cast! I can't wait to see it. Plus Humberto Ramos on art is cool. His art is very kinetic and fun to look at it. I'm sure this book will be awesome and X-citing. Haha! 


This is like the 30th time that Dan Slott has relaunched Amazing Spider-Man.  Ok so that's an exaggeration. But not by much! Any way. The appeal here is that this is going to be Peter Parker like we've never seen him before. He's taking Spider-Man global! I think . . . I'm not sure actually. All I know is that Parker Industries is taking over the Baxter Building (cuz fuck the Fantastic Four) and Peter is super rich now. He looks to be taking Spider-Man around the world Iron Man-style. I'm curious. Slott has written some of the best Spider-Man stories in recent years including the Superior Spider-Man. That was one of my favorite Spidey stories. I'm interested to see what new direction Slott will take Parker on this time. 


Given the success of the Netflix series, it makes sense that Marvel would want to give Murdock a new series. The Mark Waid series, which is about to end, has Matt relocated to San Francisco. When this new series starts Murdock will be back in Hell's Kitchen. Cuz let's face it. Daredevil and Hell's Kitchen go together like peas and carrots!
Just like these hicks!
Looks like the new series will see him training a new apprentice. We don't know much else other than Murdock's identity is now back to being a secret. This is probably to line it up with the Netflix series. Also, the series is being written by Charles Soule. He took over Swamp Thing after Scott Snyder left and I think he did a good job of keeping it interesting and exciting. Fun fact - in real life Soule is a lawyer. He'll be able to bring that knowledge to Daredevil and hopefully craft a really exciting story. Most everything he's written that I've read I've really enjoyed. It helps that Daredevil is one of my favorite characters. I'm excited to see him back in New York and still kicking ass.
Another Jason Aaron book on the list! And this one should be really interesting! I mentioned before how he introduced a female Thor last year. Turns out that it was Jane Foster. She found herself worthy of Mjolnir. It helped to put her cancer in remission (while she's Thor at least). That's an interesting hook. She's dying of cancer but the power of Mjolnir halts it. I'm curious to see what Aaron will do with her story. Is she going to be Thor on a permanent basis? Will the cancer eventually kill her even when she's Thor? Not much is known about the new series but her introduction was very well done. It will be interesting to see her evolve as a hero and a starring character as opposed to love interest/supporting character. And what about the real Thor? How will he factor into the new series? I have no doubt that Aaron will answer all of these questions slowly but surely while crafting an awesome new take on the Thor legend.

The biggest shock for me while learning of the new Marvel comics was this addition. The original Old Man Logan was written by Mark Millar and drawn by Steve McNiven. It took place in a dark future where the villains ruled the world. Few heroes were left. One hero was the original Wolverine, now just an old man named Logan. When he is called back to action, he does so reluctantly given the horrific part he played in the villains' rise to power. By the end, he had decided to be a hero again and save the world from the bad guys. This new series is going to be brought to us by Jeff Lemire and Andrea Sorrentino on art. They were the team that gave us that awesome Green Arrow run I mentioned earlier.

THERE it is! Couldn't find it earlier . . .
They crafted a really exciting, world building run on Green Arrow. I'm excited to see what the hell is going to happen in Old Man Logan. First of all, Logan will be on a world that he recognizes but is still different. Second, he'll still have the traumatic memories of his world. Third, is he going to go home? Will he want to? Since Wolverine was killed off not long ago in the comic books (more on that later) he's going to be the only Logan in this world. I'm excited to see what role he's going to play. And if Sorrentino is on art then it will look gorgeous!
This is another shocking addition to the All New, All Different Marvel. Miles Morales is apparently the only survivor of the Ultimate Universe. Now he's in the regular Marvel Universe. Luckily this series will continue to be written by Brian Michael Bendis and drawn by Sara Pichelli, both were the creators of Miles Morales back in 2011. He's been a fan favorite character and one of my favorites as well. He's a great character, younger than Peter Parker but still has a hero's heart. The only thing known about this series is that it will have a Batman Beyond type feel to it. Miles will be Spider-Man in the city doing all the work getting guidance from Peter Parker. It will definitely be exciting to see Miles in the regular Marvel world, battling classic Spider-Man rogues and teaming up with the other heroes. As to how he exists in the Marvel world is a mystery. Does he remember the Ultimate Universe? Where does he live? Did any other supporting characters survive the Ultimate U's destruction? Gahnke? Gwen? Miles's father? I'm sure we'll get the answers. And I'm also sure it's going to be . . . Wait for it . . . AMAZING! Haha! Get it? . . . Ok . . .

Another Bendis title! And it's Iron Man! That's just so cool! I was a huge fan of Bendis's run on Avengers and I thought that he made Tony Stark really fun to read. I always hoped that he would write a Captain America comic but this is just as good! I said before how I had a love/hate relationship with the X-Men comics. Well with Iron Man . . . I've liked his stuff but I've never fallen in love with it. I think this will be the time that I really fall in love. Bendis has a knack for telling larger than life stories with a very human, emotional center. I'm curious to see where Bendis takes Stark and his crew. Given that the last Iron Man title was Superior Iron Man, it will be interesting to see what happens next. In Superior, Stark was pretty much the bad guy. He was doing his best to use technology to better mankind, as he always does, but he was so selfish and almost evil about it. He was his own worst enemy in that story. I thought it was very well done, but how does one come back from that? Now, it's totally possible that that story has been erased from history, but that's not Marvel's style. I think Tony will remember what happened and the bad things he did. He'll have to do his best to make amends, also while protecting the world from some terrible technological threat. Cuz ya know . . . Technology is always dangerous in the wrong hands! Dun dun dun!!!

Believe it or not, this is the one title I'm looking forward to above all else. I like the idea of supporting characters stepping up when their mentors are gone. Dick Grayson did it, Jane Foster is doing it, and now Laura, X-23 is doing it. The main reason I'm excited for this title is that it's being written by Tom Taylor. He wrote the absolutely wonderful Injustice: Gods Among Us tie in comic book. Well, technically he only wrote the first two and a half years, but they were PERFECT! He instantly became a favorite writer for me. Anything he did, I would jump on. He even did the aforementioned Superior Iron Man and he also did a great run on Earth 2. I'm very curious to see how he handles this new take on Wolverine. X-23 is a very interesting character. She's one of the few characters that is distinct in that she was actually created on the TV series X-Men: Evolution. She was so popular that Marvel brought her into the comics. She had her own series for a while and was recently featured as a major player in Bendis's All New X-Men run. Now she'll be taking on her "father's" mantle as Wolverine. And we all know that the name Wolverine comes with a lot of enemies. But I'm sure she can handle it. Also, I don't half wonder if bringing her into a high profile book will be a clue as to what happens to the Wolverine character on film after Hugh Jackman retires . . .
Passing the torch?
These are the books that I will definitely be checking out when they are released in October. I'm excited for all of them and the possibilities of crossovers and maybe even new comics coming out after these are released. It's an all new, all different pull list for the Comic Junkie!
Till Next Time!
JJ - The Comic Junkie!

Wednesday, August 19, 2015


Over the past several decades Batman has enjoyed a lot of success on film. Yes, there have been some great live action films but I think most true Batman fans will tell you that the best Batman movies are the animated ones. From the first one, Mask of the Phantasm, to the most recent one, Batman vs Robin, there have been many actors, character designs, and villains for Batman to go through. I've watched these films many times over the years. They are endlessly entertaining for me. I never get tried of watching them, critiquing them, and gushing over them. Without further ado, I'm going to go ahead and rank them now. Please keep in mind that these are exclusively the Batman films and not the Superman/Batman or Justice League films. Here we go!


I won't even lie to you. I don't care for this movie at all. I haven't watched the whole thing all the way through since I was a kid. And even then I didn't like it! I give it props for having a somewhat interesting mystery and for keeping (most) of the original cast. But even Kevin Conroy with all his bad assness couldn't save this one. I'm not even ashamed to admit that I do not own this film. But then again . . . Maybe I'll give it another shot . . . Someday . . . 

BATMAN PLAYED BY - Kevin Conroy.


This is an interesting project. On the one hand, the producers had the unenviable task of having to follow up Batman: the Animated Series. That's like trying to follow a steak dinner with broccoli. Or something like that. Basically, you don't wanna follow the king. I like to think that the show was good. It was fun for kids. While B:TAS was a little more mature and anyone could enjoy it, The Batman was much more kid friendly. They made a companion film called The Batman vs Dracula. While I enjoy the fun of the film, it loses points for me because it just feels like a longer episode of the TV series. Whereas the other films on this list actually feel like movies, this one is just a 70 minute episode. BUT it's still fun.



Truth be told, this film would probably rank higher but it's barely a Batman movie. What wins it points is the exceptional voice cast, the Arkham setting (the games are fucking awesome), and of course Kevin Conroy's Batman. The film mostly focuses on the Suicide Squad and their mission in Arkham Asylum. One of the best characters in the film is definitely the Riddler, played wonderfully by Matthew Gray Gubler. The Riddler is one of the more challenging (or annoying) aspects of the game, so it makes sense he would play a big part of this film.


This film doesn't really fit in with the rest of the movies but I still count it because . . . Well it's animated Batman . . . That's why! It's technically 6 short films written by different comic book and film writers and directed by Japanese directors. Although the films are separate they do have somewhat of a flowing narrative throughout. It also is technically meant to be a fill-in film in between Batman Begins and The Dark Knight. It's a pretty interesting film and visually exciting to see the different takes on Bruce Wayne and Batman. The stories are well done and fit in with the "Legend" of Batman.

This was the first of the "new 52" animated Bat-films. It has a decent enough story, but it loses points because the cast is good but haven't quite found their footing yet. However, Damian is a very welcome addition to animated universe. And Thomas Gibson plays Deathstroke. That's inspired casting! Jason O'Mara is still getting used to playing Batman but he does a better job in this film than he did in Justice League: War. Not to say he was bad in that film, he just was getting used to the role and voice acting in general. All in all it's a decent film, although it feels a little slow in some places. Oh and David McCallum (from NCIS as Ducky) plays Alfred. That's fucking great!



This is kind of an interesting subject. This film was released to be a companion to the theatrical release of Batman and Robin. However, it was released like a year later (which really made me mad as a kid, let me tell you). Now I will admit that this is definitely the superior film to Batman and Robin. However, it is a decent film but it's not the best. The story goes that Barbara Gordon is kidnapped by Mr. Freeze. She's the only suitable donor for a transplant that his dying wife. Batman and Robin rush to her rescue. Where this film loses points with me is that there is no great fight scene between Batman and Mr. Freeze. I mean, the voice acting is great and the story is really good. Lots of suspense at the end with the fire on the oil rig but uh . . . no fight . . . Little disappointing. However, there is the one scene where Batman lands on those robbers' car and makes them crash. It's awesome! Also, Nora Fries gets a happy ending so that's good.



Now this is where the voice cast really hit their stride! This film is far better than Son of Batman by a long shot! The story takes its cue from Grant Morrison's Batman vs Robin and Scott Snyder's Batman: The Court of Owls. It also features two previous Bat-actors in prominent roles: Kevin Conroy (from Batman: the Animated Series) as Thomas Wayne and Jeremy Sisto (from Justice League: the New Frontier) as Talon. The film set up a great "relationship" between Bruce and Damian. It seems believable that Damian would start to distrust Bruce and want to follow the Talon and join the Court of Owls. Also, the fight between the Talons and Batman was freakin sweet! That's one of my favorite Batman stories, so it was great to see it come to life. And Weird Al plays the Doll Maker. And



It seems that no matter what happens to Batman in his life, tragedy will always follow. That is especially apparent in this film. This was the first solo animated Batman film when the DCAU started with Superman: Doomsday. It was also the first one that didn't feature a world in crisis or a city about to be destroyed. This film is very personal. Sure there are big stakes, but the movie is very emotional and plays very close to the chest. The voice cast in this film is outstanding. Bruce Greenwood is fantastic as a grizzled, hardened Batman, Neil Patrick Harris is great as a sarcastic, funny Nightwing, Jensen Ackles plays Red Hood as equal parts sympathetic and tough, and then John DiMaggio channels his inner Heath Ledger to portray a very scary, sadistic Joker. One complaint about the film is that it spends too much time on exposition but it's a small price to pay for a very well made, tragic film.

BATMAN PLAYED BY - Bruce Greenwood


This film isn't a tragedy, per se, but it doesn't really have a happy ending either. I mean sure, Batman and Gordon become friends but it's born out of Gotham City twisting and trying to break both men. But these are tough men that love to fight back and win! This film wins a lot of points for its excellent lead actors Ben McKenzie (from Gotham) and Bryan Cranston (from Breaking Bad) as Bruce Wayne and Jim Gordon respectively. Both could easily play those characters in a live action film. They really sell this film, which is arguably the most realistic of all the DCAU films. It's a very simple film, adapted pretty much straight from the comic. It's also more of a Jim Gordon story than a Bruce Wayne one. Oh and Eliza Dushku plays Selina Kyle. THAT needs to be a live action transition!



Another Frank Miller comic brought to life. And it's brought to life quite brilliantly might I add. Another case where the voice acting is spot on. The film tries its best to feel like it was ripped out of the 80s and it succeeds. The film gives us an older Bruce Wayne that returns to a life as Batman to combat a crime wave that seems to be worsening day by day. He has to tangle with the Mutant Gang, Two-Face, the Joker, and even Superman, on orders from the government to shut him down. The fight scenes are all brutal, unforgiving, and totally bad ass. Each adversary that he faces is a different shade of Batman. Two-Face represents his struggle with duality, the Mutants represent the monster he could let himself become, the Joker represents the many mistakes and regrets he's had over the years, and Superman represents the hero that Batman should aspire to be (in a sense). Peter Weller (Robocop) plays a perfect aged Bruce Wayne and he's partnered with the wonderful Ariel Winter (Modern Family) as Carrie Kelly, the new Robin. The voice cast is exceptional and helps to bring this dark, gritty Batman tale to life. It's one film I will watch over and over again and never grow tired of.



When Batman Beyond proved to be a success for Kids WB, they commissioned the producers to make a home video release. The producers obliged and came up with one of the absolute best Batman vs the Joker stories ever done. In the film, the Joker has returned to terrorize Gotham City. Terry learns terrible secrets about the last encounter between Batman and the Joker involving Tim Drake, Robin. Terry must find the Joker and stop him before he unleashes a new wave of mayhem on Gotham City. So what makes this film so great? Well, the Joker is Mark Hamill. So that's always a bonus. But the final battle between Terry and the Joker is really well done. True, it's not a bombastic, crazy fight that these films are known for, but it's much better. Terry deconstructs the Joker and makes fun of him. The film sets up a great mystery as to how the Joker has returned and even features a scene with Kevin Conroy playing Batman again. I can't stress enough how great this movie is. It's fun, exciting, and a little bit scary - just the way Mr. J likes it ;)

BATMAN PLAYED BY - Will Friedle as Batman Beyond and Kevin Conroy as Batman


As I said before, some of the best Batman stories are tragedies. This is arguably one of the best Batman films ever. Some would say it IS the best Batman film. It starts off simple enough with mobsters being killed off by the mysterious Phantasm. As the film goes on we learn a lot about Bruce's history. He loved a beautiful woman and was willing to give up on the vow he made to his parents to be with her. When she left it broke his heart and he allowed himself to become the Batman. The film does not give us a happy ending. It does however, through a great speech by Alfred, give us hope for Bruce's soul. This film was the first Bat-film produced by Bruce Timm and to me it's the best. I remember going to see this in the movie theater with my mom. It wasn't till I was older that I realized how mature this film is. It's dark, tragic, and a true Batman film through and through. 


Lucky for me, WB and DC are still producing animated Batman films. This list might get updated in a few years. For now though, I'm gonna take another day off and watch them all again. 

Till Next Time! 

JJ - The Comic Junkie! 

Monday, August 17, 2015


Well folks, it's almost here! Lucasfilm and Disney are bringing us the first in a new line of Star Wars films this December. We're getting a new Star Wars trilogy along with a new stand alone film every other year. This is pretty exciting news especially considering George Lucas said that there would never be any more Star Wars films after he was finished with the prequels. Well . . . I guess he was lying! What a jerk!


We're four months away from The Force Awakens and we STILL don't have an official plot synopsis. We still don't know all the characters' names. We don't even know why it looks like the Empire is still around despite the fact that Darth Vader killed the Emperor and the Death Star blew up AGAIN. 

They are no longer bros

Since we don't know much about the new Star Wars film I thought I would take the time to speculate on what I want to see. Now keep in mind that this is just my thoughts on what I want to see. It's not spoilery per se, but I could end up being right. You've been warned! 


I loved Mark Hamill's performances in the original Star Wars films. I felt that he went from boy to man realistically throughout the series. He was so cool during Return of the Jedi. He had a calm demeanor and kicked all kinds of ass. There are rumors that part of the plot of The Force Awakens has Luke in exile, afraid of his powers and hiding from his friends and family. I hope that is not the case in the film. It would totally ruin the journey that he went on during the original films. Instead, I want to see Luke at the peak of his powers kicking all kinds of ass and training the new characters to be Jedi. Also, I wanna see Luke take on Kylo Ren . . . But I'll get to that later. 


The original films (and yeah even the prequels in some cases) had some great actors giving great performances. The characters really came to life for me. Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Harrison Ford in particular were awesome in their roles. When they were announced for the new film I was thrilled. It wasn't about nostalgia, it was about knowing that if they were on board then the film was definitely going to be great. More than anybody else, these three would care about the film and give it the credibility that the fans would need. I'm excited now to see the new actors, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, and Oscar Isaac become the new faces of the Star Wars saga. Well . . . unless one of them turns out to be a villain or something. 


I love the new droid design. He looks really cool and unique. I just hope to God that he is not annoying. The main issue with The Phantom Menace in my mind is that young Anakin and Jar Jar were super annoying. The film would have been much better if they had either not been in it or at the very least had had less dialogue. I mean C-3PO gets a pass because the other characters acknowledge how irritating he is.

Plus he's shiny . . . 

I'm excited to see the new characters and buy all of those toys. Because I'm a huge nerd. But . . . I don't want them to be annoying. 


Well, he certainly LOOKS like a bad guy doesn't he? Star Wars has never been shy about making sure that we know who the bad guy is based on how he is dressed.

Free Hugs

According to Entertainment Weekly, Kylo Ren, the newest Star Wars baddie, is a more complicated figure than he looks. He doesn't believe he's the villain. This is definitely a step in the right direction. Darth Vader was bad ass looking and for sure the villain, but we find out that his motivations are much more complicated than wanting to rule the galaxy. He was manipulated by Palpatine into becoming his apprentice and believing that the Jedi were evil. Vader really did have a great backstory and even if the prequels didn't do it justice, the story is still somewhat believable. 

Now, with Darth Maul, God only knows what that guy's problem is. I like to think that he knew he was the bad guy but didn't care. He was just happy to be on what he thought was the winning team. Sometimes having a straight forward villain is good (it's done wonders for the Joker) but most of the time audiences need a character that's complicated and relatable. We may not agree with why this person is doing bad things but at least we understand where he's coming from. 


Not a requirement per se, but one of the most important aspects of the original Star Wars films was the guiding spirit of Obi Wan Kenobi. He was Luke's first teacher and wouldn't let death stop him from passing on his wisdom. Ewan McGregor was definitely one of the highlights of the prequel trilogy. He pulled off playing the student in The Phantom Menace to Master in Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith. He made the character of Obi Wan his own, but still honored what Alec Guinness had done in the originals. It might be too much or maybe even too cheesy to see Obi Wan return as a Force Ghost in The Force Awakens but I would be excited if it happened. 


No one would call the Star Wars films comedies, but they do have funny moments. Han Solo and Chewbacca in particular have some great banter. Han was one of my favorite characters when I was growing up. He was funny, confident, and loyal despite being kind of morally ambiguous in the beginning. The Star Wars films have always been pretty good about blending in different genres. On the one hand they're sci-fi, then they're action, they're comedy, then dramatic, and even a little bit romantic. Lucas would call them fantasies and I supposed that fits too. What will help to make this new movie, and the subsequent ones, memorable will be the humorous moments. However, it is a delicate balance. Too little humor and the film seems dark and depressing. Too much humor and we might have another Jar Jar Binks on our hands.

You stay out of my new films! You hear me!!

JJ Abrams is a great filmmaker and has done a good job of balancing different elements in his films so far. I think he'll give us some great funny moments mixed in with all the action. 


One of the things that I think resonated most with fans about Princess Leia was how tough she was/is. Technically, she needed rescuing from the Death Star but it's fair to say she held her own. There was that creepy droid that was supposed to get her to reveal the Rebels' location and she beat it. She even lied about their hiding place when her planet was being threatened. She could stand up to Han Solo, who doesn't let anyone walk all over him and later she killed Jabba the Hutt! She's a tough character and helps save the day. Daisy Ridley's character has a lot to live up to. I think in today's world, young women need a strong role model. One that can stand up next to the men and be just as tough, if not tougher. For the most part the Star Wars films have done a good job of having a strong female lead. Ridley's character will need to be just as independent as Leia was in the original films if she's going to be memorable and inspiring. Also . . . I kinda hope she's a Jedi. We haven't seen that yet in the films, a strong female Jedi. Not in live action anyway . . . 


Say what you will about the Star Wars prequels, but they freaking nailed the lightsaber fights. The Phantom Menace had an awesome sequence set to John Williams' awesome Duel of the Fates score. Then we got to see Yoda kick major ass in Attack of the Clones. Then of course there was the climatic battle between Obi Wan and Anakin in Revenge of the Sith (which makes their reunion in A New Hope kind of embarrassing). With today's technology and the fact that the villain is a young man, we should definitely get to see Kylo Ren dish out some sweet lightsaber tricks with his crazy, cross guard saber.

If being a Sith doesn't work out then he can make it as a Lumberjack!

As I stated before, I want to see an awesome fight between Luke and Kylo Ren. Mark Hamill supposedly lost some weight and got in shape for the film. That had to be for something right! Let's see him kick Ren's ass and teach the new characters to do the same! 

The trailers so far have not revealed much about the film. We can guess at what's happening based on locations, character interactions, and costumes but really we don't know anything do we? All we know for sure is that it takes place 30 years after Return of the Jedi. Is the Empire coming back? Did the Rebels start a new government? Is Luke going to go crazy and start laughing maniacally for no reason?

The Force is strong in my family . . . 

We'll have to wait till December 18 for the answers. For now though, I'm going to put aside some money and buy all the action figures and Lego sets I can get my hands on. Cuz when it comes to Star Wars, I'm always a little kid at heart.

Till Next Time!

JJ - The Comic Junkie! 

Wednesday, August 12, 2015


Well, despite the best intentions, the new Fantastic Four was a complete bust. I always try to look for the good things in a film. This particular one was off to a great start but it fell flat in the second half. There are reports of a tense relationship between Fox and director Josh Trank. Other reports say that Trank ran a weird set. Some even state that he was fired before the film finished production. Regardless of what may or may not have happened one thing is certain - Fantastic Four has bombed critically and financially. So what's next?

For some reason, Marvel has discontinued the Fantastic Four comic book. Rumor has it that because Marvel Studios does not own the rights to the characters, so they've actively pushed them out of merchandising and publishing. I think there is some truth to that, but it does confuse me. I mean, Marvel is credited with the Fantastic Four film. Do they not get any say in the final product? That's weird, right?

Either way, Fox has a problem. They can't seem to get the Fantastic Four right on film. Granted, I liked the first film and even parts of this film. The Fantastic Four are great characters and a movie done well would be really exciting and a lot of fun. Unfortunately, we'll probably never get to see the X-Men films crossover with them now. We'll probably also not get the sequel that was planned for Summer 2017. So what now? Should Fox sell the rights back to Marvel? I'm sure most fans would want that to happen. The truth is that IF Fox were to sell the rights back to Marvel that doesn't mean we'll be seeing the Fantastic Four on film anytime soon. Perhaps they'll pop up in Avengers: Infinity War or Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. or something like that.

I have another idea. What if, instead of the Four themselves, we get their supporting characters thrown into the Marvel Cinematic Universe? The Four could pop up in Marvel's later films at some point but let's say we just get some supporting characters. Here's who I think, from the Fantastic Four comics, should appear in future Marvel movies.


Now here are two characters that would fit very well into either a Guardians of the Galaxy or Thor sequel. Galactus is actually one of my favorite characters. He's so cool looking! And the Silver Surfer is freaking awesome! They are both ridiculous concepts but they're so much fun. Galactus eats planets and the Surfer is his herald. The Surfer serves Galactus to spare his homeworld. Eventually, the Surfer turns on Galactus and they are mortal enemies. These characters would fit perfectly into the MCU. I would love to see them on the big screen again. And this time, I'd like to see Galactus in all his glory instead of as a strange space cloud. 


Ok, ok. He's been done twice. Both times were kind of disappointing. At first they tried to make him a Lex Luthor type billionaire. Then they tried to make him a super-smart blogger that goes crazy on Planet Zero. I think we can all agree that we really haven't seen the real DR. DOOM on screen. Not yet anyway. So, if Fox were to give the Fantastic Four characters back to Marvel, I think they should let Dr. Doom appear as the villain in another Marvel movie. He's just ripe for an Iron Man 4 or some type of Avengers film. He's an evil dictator that's dabbled in the black arts, time travel, and space exploration. He would fit perfectly into what Marvel is planning for their future films. He's longed for things like the Infinity Gauntlet in the past. Why not give him the chance to try and claim it? Doom would be an amazing villain to see on screen. He's brilliant, manipulative, and has an ego to rival Robert Downey, Jr. 

He'd call it charming. And it would be hard to argue with him.

Ok, Fox. Let's at least give Doom back to Marvel. Because we all want to see him take on the Avengers. But then again, it's not like Marvel has the best track record with villains . . . 

What was your name again? 


I could be mistaken, but I'm pretty sure that Fox owns the rights to the Skrulls. It's a real shame because the Skrulls are awesome villains. One of my all time favorite comic book stories is Secret Invasion. That story had the Skrulls infiltrating Earth and systematically taking the place of different heroes AND villains on Earth. When the Skrulls finally revealed themselves, they had almost beaten the Avengers and X-Men and were doing a good job of convincing the people of Earth that their way was the best way. It's a great alien invasion story and one of the scariest when you think about it. The Skrulls are shape-shifters. You can't trust the person next to you for fear that they're one of them. I'd love to see Secret Invasion adapted into a live action film. You wouldn't necessarily need the Fantastic Four in the story, but it would be cool to see a Super Skrull with all of their powers fighting the Avengers. Plus, it would lead into this:

With Sony and Marvel now sharing the Spider-Man characers we could also get another shot at Norman Osborn. Plus he could start a Cabal like he did after the Secret Invasion story. Damn that would be awesome. True story - the Dark Reign stories, especially Dark Avengers got me back into Marvel Comics when they were being released. It was great. And it started with those damn, pesky Skrulls. 

I'm sure these characters are on everyone's wish list to see in a Marvel movie. With the Fantastic Four failing at the box office, it's high time that Fox and Marvel renegotiate their deal with these characters. I would be willing to give a Marvel Studios produced Fantastic Four film a chance, especially with any of these characters present. But as I said, maybe it's best we see these characters first and then bring the Four in a later time. Give everyone some time to heal . . . 

Till Next Time!

JJ - The Comic Junkie