With the sad passing of Stan Lee earlier this week, I wanted to offer personal reflection on this incredible storyteller and the impact he’s had on the lives of so many people. I felt the loss of Stan Lee like a kick in the gut. The characters he’s created have helped me through some of the hardest times in my life and inspired me to be a better man. Thank you for listening to my brief tribute to a creator that meant a great deal to me. My hope is that you’ll hear something that will resonate with you in some small way. Thanks again. Listen here or subscribe on Stitcher and iTunes:
In this episode of The World’s Best Podcast, I review the new movie Overlord. There are full SPOILERS in this one, but the movie blows so just sit back and enjoy the ride. I also discuss the Jason Statham movie The Meg. Let me tell you, the sharks aren’t the only things that are killer in The Meg, just wait until you get a look a Statham’s abs! But we’ll get to that in the episode! All this and more! Listen here or subscribe on Stitcher and iTunes:
Aquaman is fast approaching it’s release date and I am filled with both extreme excitement and dread. Everything I’ve seen from the trailers and promotional material looked fantastic. Despite how unbelievably cool the trailer looks, we all know how, now more than ever, a great trailer doesn’t make a good movie (cough*suicidesquad*cough). It seems like director James Wan could be delivering on some really unique and fun world building. Seeing Atlantis and characters like Black Manta, Ocean Master, and even creatures like The Trench, being brought to life is so thrilling. Just a quick aside, even though we really do get some terrible superhero movies, we should appreciate this golden age of having some of our most wonderful dreams from our favorite comic books brought to life on the big screen and TV. Anyway, I love how Wan even managed to give us the classic Aquaman costume. Which brings me to another point, despite how much I dislike Justice League, I thought Jason Momoa did a great job for what they gave him. So he definitely has the charisma to make Aquaman a memorable hero, if he’s given a good film to showcase the character.
It’s really a shame the way DC chose to go about making these films. As I sit here writing this article, I’m imagining all the cool things that could have been had they just taken their time and done movies like Wonder Woman, Aquaman (God willing), and yes even Man of Steel, from the beginning and then built on that.
I really think the wild card here, that makes this film stand out from other movies from TheWorldsofDC (Yes, that is now the official name for the DC Cinematic Universe) is the director, James Wan. He’s a prolific filmmaker behind some excellent movies in completely different genres (Insidious, The Conjuring 1 & 2, Furious 7). He’s also directing the pilot and executive producing the upcoming new, live action Swamp Thing series on the streaming service DC Universe. I find myself coming out of his films thinking that what I saw wasn’t just a great action movie or a great horror movie, but just a great movie period. I’m cautious optimistic that he’s going to crush this flick.
So, over at EW.com they had a set of new character posters for the upcoming Aquaman film. If this movie ends up being good at all, I think I definitely might have to snag a Black Manta or Aquaman poster (I think those are the 2 coolest ones). I honestly think they all look pretty cool though. Take a look below. Which character posters are your favorite? Are you guys looking forward to Aquaman as much as I am? Or do you think it’s going to be a Suicide Squad level disaster? Please let me know in the comments below and thanks for reading!
Aaaaaaaand I’m sorry, I’m not proud of it, but I had to include this picture…
After our last podcast on The Walking Dead you may be thinking: “Another Walking Dead Podcast? I thought you hated this show!” Well, tonight is a special occasion because this Sunday’s episode will be the last to feature Rick Grimes on The Walking Dead. Andrew Lincoln AKA Rick Grimes himself is moving on to greener pastures. With Rick still alive, well, and the main character in the comics, what will be the final fate of Rick Grimes on the TV series? Will he live? Will he die? What impact will his departure have on the series and the characters? Can the show survive without Rick Grimes? All these questions and more will be answered as Paul Jr. & Sr. breakdown and review The Walking Dead: Rick Grimes’ Final Episode! I must admit, by the end the episode I was genuinely interested in watching where the series goes from here. So, we get into all of that on the podcast. Enjoy! Also, BEWARE SPOILERS!Listen here or subscribe on Stitcher and iTunes:
This year’s Annual Superhero Crossover Event on The CW, just keeps getting more interesting. Each new photo, each new piece of information that’s been released so has been great. This year’s Crossover, “Elseworlds”, seems to be,by far their most ambitious Superhero Event yet. Each announcement has been more intriguing than the one before. This Crossover will see the Arrowverse debuts of Batwoman, Lois Lane, and Nora Fries (which can only mean that her husband Victor Freeze can’t be far behind), they’re even making Superman a major player in this kind of story for the first time.
Sure, we’ve seen some pretty great Superman appearances on Supergirl, but seeing Clark Kent interacting with The Flash and Green Arrow for the first time is really exciting.
Over the past few weeks, set photos have shown that the miniseries event will take it’s “Elseworlds” namesake seriously. We’re going to see alternate versions of Barry and Oliver. Apparently we’ll see Stephen Amell playing not only an alternate version of The Flash, but Barry Allen as well. We’ve also seen Grant Gustin as Green Arrow. This isn’t just a costume and power swap, Barry and Oliver are switching their alter-egos as well
Plus, John Wesley Shipp (AKA Henry Allen AKA Jay Garrick) will return as The Flash from the short lived 1990’s Flash TV series. Which seems like another fun addition to this event.
At first, I thought only Barry and Oliver we’re getting fun alternate versions of themselves in this Crossover, but Superman will as well. When the photo of Superman in a black costume was released I didn’t think it necessarily meant this was an evil, alternate version of The Man Of Steel. This was definitely a Superman from another Earth, but not necessarily a villainous version of the character…
POTENTIAL SPOILERS HERE, I’ll BE DOING A LOT OF SPECULATING, WHICH DOESNT MEAN I’LL BE RIGHT. BUT IF YOU WANT TO GO INTO THIS CROSSOVER COLD, PROCEED WITH CAUTION….
Still here? Ok… t turns out I may have been wrong about this version of Superman. He is indeed a bad guy. In the set photo below (and others you can find online) we see Supergirl, Green Arrow, and “our” Superman facing off against the (presumably) evil, black suited, Superman holding Barry hostage and, possibly, considering crushing his head like a grape. Now, take a good look at “our” Superman, the good Superman in the foreground. He’s holding a large, old book that other set photos have seemed to suggest, evil, black suit Superman is after in a big, bad way. This is just a theory, but if I’m right, that book could have a massive significance for the entire ArrowMultiverse, but more on that in a minute…
With all these alternate Earths and alternate versions of heroes in play, it’s unsurprising, but no less cool, that LaMonica Garrett will be playing a key role as The Monitor. An extremely powerful entity that’s part of a race of beings called The Monitors, who safe guard The Multiverse. Courtesy of EW.com we have our first look at The Monitor it’s pretty fucking awesome. Take a look:
Remember the book I told you to keep an eye on in the superhero standoff photo? Well, it looks like The Monitor is holding the same book in photo above. What’s this book and why’s it so important? Because, in my opinion, it looks a lot like The Book Of Destiny. Destiny is one of The Endless. Siblings who personify states of being for sentient life: Destiny, Death, Dream, Destruction, Despair, Desire, and Delirium.
Destiny is the oldest of The Endless and forever chained to his book. The Book Of Destiny contains everything that ever was and will be. So if The Monitor has it, this story is possibly a lot bigger than we’ve speculated. This wouldn’t be the first time The Endless were referenced, or at least hinted at, in The Arrowverse, so it’s a possibility. If someone could find a way to get The Book away from Destiny (a presumably impossible task), they’d have the knowledge of all of creation at their finger tips. Unlimited power. However, like I said this is just a theory. But it would be really fucking cool.
Another exciting idea is, with The Monitor in play, his evil counter part The Anti-Monitor could the villain of the Crossover or will at least make an appearance.
The Anti-Monitor is arguably the most powerful and dangerous villain in the DC Universe. He was the main antagonist in Crisis On Infinite Earths, a story that’s been hinted at since the first episode of The Flash. The Anti-Monitor and The Book Of Destiny, if they’re in play, the stakes don’t get any higher.
The newspaper headlines from the future, “Flash Missing, Vanishes In Crisis” and “Red Skies Vanish” are both references to this seminal miniseries. It seems like regardless of how this plays out, this is going to be one epic crossover.
Despite any problems you may have with the individuals shows, The Arrowversealways seem to really pull it off in a spectacular way when it comes to the crossovers each year. They have yet to disappoint and this one doesn’t look to break that trend. I know I can’t wait for December to see exactly what crazy adventure our heroes find themselves in.
Daredevil is by far one of my favorite shows. When Season 1 premiered on Netflix, I was blown away. This was superhero storytelling in a format I’d always wanted, but hadn’t seen before. An adult, character driven show that took the amazing characters from the comic books and told a dark, complex story. With the first two seasons of Daredevil and the first season of Jessica Jones, superhero storytelling had reached a new level of excellence, these shows were game changers. Even though we got a decent dose of Matt Murdock in The Defenders, it’s been far too long between Season 2 and 3. With the future of Marvel and Netflix in doubt, I’m happy to say Daredevil Season 3 delivers BIG TIME. In this episode, we discuss characters, story, deaths, twists, connections to the comic and more. So this episode is FULL SPOILERS. We had a blast recording this one, so we hope you enjoy listening to it. Listen here or subscribe on Stitcher and iTunes:
I also wanted to include some graphic novel recommendations. Daredevil Season 3 draws heavily from a few different Daredevil stories, but they’re all phenomenal. You can pick them up on Amazon at the links below.
One of my favorite aspects of the Arrowverse has always been their use of John Constantine. When Matt Ryan played the character on the very underrated and short lived Constantine TV series, it was clear there was something special about him in this role that made him perfect for the character. Almost immediately after the Constantine series was canceled, something fairly unique happened where Matt Ryan became DC’s de facto John Constantine. He made a guest appearance on Arrow as the character, retroactively integrating Constantine into the Arrowverse. Ryan voiced Constantine in his own online animated series (which is how Vixen and The Ray joined The Arrowverse). The excellent DC Animated Movie; JusticeLeagueDark, and the just released Constantine: City Of Demons, also had Matt Ryan return to voice John Constantine.
As soon as LegendsofTomorrow was first announced, I thought Constantine would make an excellent addition to the cast. It was an eclectic group of DC characters and it seemed like a pretty big missed opportunity to not include him on a show like this. Thankfully, It seems like the folks over on The CW have finally come to their senses. After his excellent reoccurring appearances in Season 3, it seemed like the character was finally sticking around. At last, in Season 4, John Constantine is on of the crew of The Waverider (kind of).
Now that my gushing about Constantine is out of the way, back to Legends. After last season, the Legends are basking in their success at actually saving the timeline and doing things right for once. They’re even being honored by The Time Bureau. Their personal lives are looking pretty good too. Sarah and Ava are even thinking about moving in together. So the team really doesn’t want the other shoe to inevitability drop.
Constantine, always knowing how to make an entrance, returns to remind Sarah of the warning he gave the team at the end of last season. When the Legends defeated the time demon Mallus, they unleashed other supernatural and magical entities onto the time stream. Now the Legends have to clean up this latest mess and it looks like it’s going to be pretty great.
The first mystical threat they encounter occurs at Woodstock, where an iconic mythical creature gets a fantastic Legends spin. A Unicorn is impaling and eating people. That sentence should give you an idea of just how crazy and fun this show is. Much to the chagrin of Mick, it may not be a dragon (he REALLY wants to kill a dragon), but it’ll do.
Sarah turns to John for help dealing with the creature, while the rest of the team trips on the mystical goo the Unicorn sprayed on them (Because, of course). To capture and banish the Unicorn, John needs to perform a spell with ingredients that include a joint stolen from Jerry Garcia, Janice Joplin’s hair, and a virgin as bait. Of course the only virgin they know is poor, poor Gary from the Time Bureau, who they sucker into being bait for the human heart eating monster. The Unicorn actually looks really cool in it’s true monstrous form and after biting off Gary’s nipple, Constantine is able to use the spell to send the creature to Hell.
When everything is said and done, Sarah tries to convince John to officially become a member of the Legends. But John being John basically tells her to fuck off in his own special way. However, we know that it’s unlikely he’ll keep that attitude for long. Especially after the very ominous way and the episode ends. There’s a larger threat out there that will take Constantine and the Legends to deal with. I suspect I know what it is specifically, but I don’t want to spoil it here.
I also wanted to mention that Thomas F. Wilson AKA Biff Tannen himself has joined the show as Nate’s disapproving father. He didn’t respect Nate’s job as a historian and has no Idea that his son has been playing time traveling superhero for that last two years.
LegendsofTomorrow is at its best when it embraces it’s most absurd ideas and they seem to be doing exactly that this season. Much like the new season of Arrow, this seems like a fresh new direction for the show that could be a new start for LegendsofTomorrow. I know I had a blast and I can’t wait to see where the season goes from here!
This month sees the return of all The CW’s Superhero Shows, including Arrow, The Flash, Supergirl, and Legends of Tomorrow. In this episode, I focus on the season premiere of Arrow and the first two episodes of The Flash. I also discuss some of the cool revelations surrounding this year’s epic DC Superhero Crossover: Elseworlds! Featuring Superman and the debut of Lois Lane and Batwoman!
As I mentioned in the Podcast, The CW just released this incredibly intriguing poster for the crossover that promises an exciting and unpredictable event. After all “Elseworlds” means a “What If…” story. Not another Earth in The Multiverse exactly, but a look at what might have been. It looks like the Crossover is taking this to heart in a big way.
What makes this poster even more fascinating, is when Stephen Amell posted it on Twitter, it was with the subtitle: “My name is Barry Allen and I’m the fastest man alive.”.Which would suggest that they’re not just swapping powers, but identities as well. As if the poster didn’t switch things up enough, we also got this behind the scenes look, that shows Tyler Hoechlin wearing a black Superman costume. Interesting…
One thing I forgot to mention in the podcast is the fact that, DC character and quasi-villain, The Monitor is a major player in the event. Considering that The Monitors are an advanced race of beings that watch over The Multiverse, The Monitor’s inclusion is very big deal.
As things get bigger and bigger in the crossovers each year, I wonder if sooner or later The Arrowverse will do it’s own version of the classic, massive event series Crisis on Infinite Earths?
In the very first episode of The Flash in Season 1, we a news headline from the year 2024 in Harrison Wells’ time vault that reads “FLASH MISSING. VANISHES IN CRISIS”. Another headline on the front page reads “RED SKIES VANISH”.
The skies turning red are a key aspect of the Crisis on Infinite Earths, a story that sees Barry Allen sacrifice himself to save a The Multiverse. As the Season 5 premiere shows us, it seems Barry never comes back from that fateful battle.
Which would lead more legitimacy to my theory that eventually The Arrowverse will tackle their own version of this classic and seminal tail. Any way you look at it, this seems like one of the most exciting crossovers The Arrowverse has ever attempted.
Alan Moore and Dave Gibbon’s Watchmen is widely considered to be one of, if not the best comic book ever written. I remember the magic of getting into to comic for the first time and being blown away by the classics of the medium: The Dark Knight Returns, Batman: Year One, and of course Watchmen. Watchmen still holds up as a brilliant, powerful masterpiece of storytelling. I don’t think Watchmen’s impact on the comic book medium can be understated.
However, as comic books have become more and more mainstream, Watchmen itself has become more mainstream. 20 years ago meeting someone else who read Watchmen was special because it was rare. If you read Watchmen, you knew something amazing that everyone else didn’t. As superhero stories and comic books became a part of pop culture in a major way, so did Watchmen. More people started to read the original graphic novel. We got Zack Snyder’s Watchmen film (an under appreciated gem, in my opinion), DC published Before Watchmen (Many of those miniseries’ were excellent), and like anything else, the more there is, the less special it becomes.
I still love the original Watchmen comic book. I’m making this point because Watchmen isn’t the sacred cow to me that it may be to some people. Which is why I’ve been on board with almost everything DC has chosen to do with the Watchmen Universe in the wake of DC REBIRTH. However, I’m mainly here to tell you that Geoff John’s and Gary Frank’s Doomsday Clock is one of the best goddamn comic books on the shelves right now.
I will be discussing SPOILERS here, so fair warning if you want to remain SPOILER–FREE…
A few weeks ago, Issue #7 of the 12 Issue miniseries went on sale and as the story hit it’s half way mark, it really kicked into a new gear. I wanted to wait awhile for people to read the latest issue before I commented on it. This is arguably the most significant series DC has published since the creation of THE NEW 52 in terms of its impact on the DC Universe.
For the most part I’m not going to recap the previous 6 Issues and instead focus mainly on Issue #7. First if all, hats off to the amazing art by Gary Frank. Frank’s been one of the best artists in the business for years, but he’s doing career best stuff here. He perfectly captures the “feel’ of the original Watchmen with copying the work of Dave Gibbons. I don’t think there’s another artist working in mainstream comics that can do what he’s doing here. He’s walking a fine line between being his own artist while making this series feel very much like a follow up to Watchmen.
The entire series, if not everything since DC REBIRTH, has been building to Doctor Manhattan’s full appearance. We finally get it here and it is suitably epic. You could definitely say this is the chapter of the story where the shit begins to hit the fan. Ozymadias, the new Rorschach, Marionette, Mime, The Comedian, Batman, and The Joker finally come face to face with Doctor Manhattan and the whole issue is pretty fucking awesome.For the most part, Johns makes the insanity of all these unique characters coming together wildly entertaining, but I’ll come back to that in a minute.
Before I get too ahead of myself, the book opens with a fantastic scene that involves Doctor Manhattan and old school Green Lantern Alan Scott, that’s pretty damn chilling. It not only gives insight into how Manhattan perceive reality, but it also lets us see Jon ( Doctor Manhattan’s real name) as a more sinister character than he was in the original Watchmen. It gives the reader a sense of ominous dread that sets the tone for the story to come.
Johns is one of the best writers of DC Comics characters of all time. He’s so often able to take characters that aren’t that compelling and turn them into some of the best characters in comics. He did it will Green Lantern, The Flash, The JSA, Hawkman, Aquaman, and more. One of the reasons this issue is so impressive, is that Johns beautifully captures the “voice” of each of the Watchmen characters, which is why the comic works so well. However, for some reason the character he can’t quite get right is Batman.
Geoff Johns has an almost supernatural ability to get inside the heads of DC characters, with sole exception of Batman. Batman should always be the smartest guy in the room, but under Johns’ writing he comes across as being 2 steps behind. That is NOT Batman.
I will concede that Johns may be improving when it comes to writing Batman. There’s a moment in this chapter when Doctor Manhattan finally shows up, in the flesh, for the first time. A moment that has been building since DC UNIVERSE REBIRTH. As the closets thing to God himself that Bruce has ever seen teleports into a room full of killers, mad men, and geniuses, Batman immediately glares right into Doctor Manhattan’s eyes and says “I know how you are”. A very cool, very Batman moment.
Each of these characters get some great moments together, but I wish there was a more substantial confrontation between Batman and Doctor Manhattan. I don’t mean physical, obviously, but I would have liked to see them interact more. We’ve still have a fair amount of issues left before the series wraps up, so I’ll probably get to see something like that sooner or later.
Without getting into too much detail, we finally find out why Doctor Manhattan came to the DCU. It’s a great scene where we’re given some answers, but even more questions.The scene also underscores the slightly darker character Doctor Manhattan has become. One thing he makes very clear to Adrian Veidt is that he has no intention of going back to the Watchmen Universe. He believes that world’s time is over. It beyond saving and not worth his attention. Needless to say Veidt is not happy. The scene ends with some shocking revelations about Veidt that fundamentally change his relationship with Reggie, the new Rorschach.
This is perhaps an Adrian Veidt more dangerous than we’ve ever seen. He’s just as ruthless and cunning as he’s always been. This issue shows us that the man who killed millions in service of “the greater good”may not have learned from his mistakes after all. He’s the same manipulative sociopath he’s always been and he’s got a plan. By the end of the Issue it seems like Ozymandias has gone “full villain”.
Finally, the most unsettling revelation is that in one month, Doctor Manhattan will have a fateful encounter with an enraged Superman. We know Doctor Manhattan doesn’t perceive time in the way everyone else does. He sees the past, present, and future all at once. So, what makes this information so disturbing is that Jon cannot see the future beyond the point of his confrontation with Superman.Which means one of two things, either Superman will destroy Doctor Manhattan or Doctor Manhattan will destroy everything. Considering that we’ve seen very little of the Man of Steel in this series so far, it seems like that’s about to change in a big way. It’s hard to see a scenario where Superman comes out on top in a fight with Doctor Manhattan, so I’m anxiously awaiting their meeting. After all, Doctor Manhattan has screwed with Clark’s life in significant ways recently. Most notably “resurrecting” Jor-El, who’s been running around the DCU causing trouble as Mr. Oz.
Though the shipping schedule has been somewhat frustrating, the series began in November 2017 and Issue 8 is slated for release in mid-November, at least it’s picking up slightly. Regardless of these minor flaws, Doomsday Clock has been a fantastic series that has vastly surpassed my expectations. What could have easily been a cash grab by DC has become a truly worthy follow up to Watchmen.
If you were skeptical about what is essentially a sequel to Watchmen, rest assured that these characters are in good hands. I can’t recommend this series enough. It’s a must read.