On this episode of The World’s Best Podcast, I attempt to discuss my favorite content from Summer 2022, but as usual, things quickly go off the rails. We may jump the tracks a few times, but it’s still a hell of a ride! Listen here: https://www.spreaker.com/episode/51098106
As you’ll hear in this episode, one of my favorite things to talk about is Tom Cruise and the INSANE stunts he does in his films. Above is a picture from the zero-gravity, plane crush stunt from 2017’s The Mummy, that I mentioned in the podcast. Tom Cruise has done a lot of bat-shit crazy stunts over the years, so I thought it would be cool to post this video, showcasing some of his most impressive stunts performed throughout his illustrious career…
Thanks for listening! Follow us on Twitter @PJWrightWBM, Instagram @worldsbestmedia2017, and our Facebook Page, Worlds Best Media. Those likes and follows, as well as iTunes reviews for the podcast, go a long way to supporting World’s Best Media. We really appreciate the loyalty and support shown to us by our fans, so thanks again! Stay healthy and stay safe!
*Check Out The New Trailer Released For This Year’s SDCC At The Bottom Of The Page!
“Three Rings for the Elven-kings under the sky / Seven for the Dwarf-lords in their halls of stone / Nine for Mortal Men doomed to die / One for the Dark Lord on his dark throne / in the Land of Mordor where the shadows lie.”
We’re about a month and a half away from the premiere of Amazon Prime’s new series, The Lord of The Rings: The Rings of Power. This show doesn’t exist in the same continuity as the Peter Jackson’s films. This is it’s own thing, taking place thousands of years before the events of The Lord of The Rings Trilogy. This will be really an interesting project to keep an eye on, regardless of how excited you are for the show itself. The entire project has been met with a mixed reception from fans. This is also the most expensive television show ever made. Amazon’s not gonna run out of money anytime soon, but if this doesn’t connect with audiences, the streaming service is going to take a massive monetary hit. I certainly won’t be crying any tears for Jeff Bezos, he’s more of human shaped, pile of dog diarrhea, stuffed into a $10,000 suit than an actual human being. You can be damn sure that when one his companies loses money, it’s the people lowest on the totem pole that pay the price. I won’t tell you what I think of The Rings of Power just yet, so you watch the trailer below and decide for yourself. Take a look…
Here’s the official series synopsis from Amazon:
“This epic drama is set thousands of years before the events of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, and will take viewers back to an era in which great powers were forged, kingdoms rose to glory and fell to ruin, unlikely heroes were tested, hope hung by the finest of threads, and the greatest villain that ever flowed from Tolkien’s pen threatened to cover all the world in darkness. Beginning in a time of relative peace, the series follows an ensemble cast of characters, both familiar and new, as they confront the long-feared re-emergence of evil to Middle-earth. From the darkest depths of the Misty Mountains, to the majestic forests of the elf-capital of Lindon, to the breathtaking island kingdom of Númenor, to the furthest reaches of the map, these kingdoms and characters will carve out legacies that live on long after they are gone.”
Right from the jump, there’s already at least one thing I love about this adaptation of Tolkien’s work: The Orcs. From what I’ve seen so far, I love how The Orcs look in this . Peter Jackson is a tough act to follow, but I love that they went 100% practical with The Orcs for this series. No CGI. Which led them to some fantastic designs. They’re unmistakably Orcs, but they’re just different enough from Peter Jackson’s versions, to The Rings of Power to make The Orcs their own. Here are a few of my favorites…
The Lord of The Rings: The Rings of Power premieres September 2nd on Prime Video.
So what do you guys think? Are you excited for this new incarnation of Middle Earth? Let us know in the comments below!
UPDATE!: Checl out the new trailer released for this year‘s San Diego Comic-Con! In my opinion, much cooler trailer. This has me far more excited for the show then I was before. Take a look…
Thanks for reading! Follow us on Twitter @PJWrightWBM, Instagram @worldsbestmedia2017, and our Facebook Page, Worlds Best Media. Those likes and follows, as well as iTunes reviews for the podcast, go a long way to supporting World’s Best Media. We really appreciate the loyalty and support shown to us by our fans, so thanks again! Stay healthy and stay safe!
*WAIT! I almost forgot one more thing!!! I LOVE maps of fictional places. Whether it’s Westeros, Gotham City, or Middle Earth, don’t ask me why, but I love them. This map from the series shows the part of Middle Earth where The Rings of Power will be taking place. Pretty cool, right?
There’s some fantastic and exciting pop culture content coming out in 2022! Movies, graphic novels, TV/Streaming, and more! Shows like Peacemaker and movies like The Batman got us off to a great start, but there’s an embarrassment of riches still coming our way this year. Below are my picks for the Movies, TV/Streaming projects, Comic Books/Graphic Novels, Books, and Video Games that you don’t want to miss in 2022!
Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets Of Dumbledore
Release Date: Apr 15, 2022
Warner Bros. just released this fascinating Behind-The-Scenes video about the new film. Definitely worth giving a watch:
While the Fantastic Beasts series hasn’t been the universally praised films that the original Harry Potter films, I’ve loved these movies, especially the last one. This is such a fun world to visit and I love this rich time period in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, showing us fascinating stories and characters we haven’t seen before. Also, c’mon, Jude Law is a PERFECT young Albus Dumbledore and I can’t wait to see more of him in this next film. Check out the trailer here:
Doctor Strange in The Multiverse of Madness
Release Date: May 6, 2022
With possible exception of The Batman, no film in 2022 has me more excited than Doctor Strange in The Multiverse of Madness. Doctor Strange is one of my favorite comic book characters as well as one of my favorite MCU characters. I thought his solo film in 2016 was a very fun, dynamic, visually interesting, and all-around solid introduction to a character with an incredibly rich history. We really just saw the tip of the iceberg in that film. he’s also my favorite hero in infinity war, his one on one duel with Thanos wielding the infinity gauntlet is one of the most iconic and just fucking cool scenes in the MCU. With this new film the character and his world has been established, giving the filmmakers the opportunity to really dive into some crazy shit. Man, after seeing the teaser trailer that aired during the Super Bowl and the full trailer that was simultaneously released online, we really got a chance to see how absolutely fucking bananas this movie is going to be. Marvel does a great job with their trailers of not spoiling the movie while still getting you incredibly excited for the project. And the Doctor Strange trailers have done that pitch perfectly. Considering the stuff that they showed us in the trailer like the illuminati call Ma fucking Patrick Stewart has Charles Xavier! Ultron drones! Wanda appearing appearing to go full villain! Incredible stuff. Marvel has always also described this film as the closest they’ve ever done to making a horror movie, which is really interesting because we haven’t seen anything like that from the MCU yet.
So you combine all of that with the fact that Sam Raimi, the legendary Director of the original Spider-Man trilogy, the Evil Deads films, Drag Me To Hell, The Giftt, and a lot of other great movies is helming this film, I think we’re gonna get something really special. Sam Raimi directed what is arguably one of the best superhero films ever made with Spider-Man 2 and we also know that he excels at weird, fucked up, offbeat, crazy, horror with the Evil Dead films and Drag Me To Hell . Rami has also been a very outspoken fan of Doctor Strange throughout his career. My expectations are so fucking high for this one I think it’s going to be a home run, but I’ve been burned many times before so let’s keep our fingers crossed. On the other hand marvel has never burned me, so far I’ve always been able to trust them to somehow zinc bigger than even their fans to deliver a fantastic project. This is my pick for The Must See Movie of 2022.
Thor: Love and Thunder
Release Date: July 8, 2022
Unlike Doctor Strange 2, we haven’t had a trailer yet to knock our socks off, but there’s a lot to be excited about in this film. Interesting, Thor is the only founding Avenger and the only MCU hero to get a 4th entry in his series. Taika Watitti has returned to direct Love and Thunder after directing not only the best Thor movie with Thor: Ragnarok, but also one of Marvel’s most beloved film in recent years. It’s a real fan favorite. The biggest draw for me is the debut of Christian Bale as Gorr The God Butcher.
Gorr is one of the coolest and most terrifying Marvel villains to debut in the comics in the last decade, so it’ll be very interesting to see how they plan to portray such a dark and blood thirsty character. Thor won’t have to face Gorr on his own because everyone’s favorite band galactic heroes/outlaws, The Guardians of The Galaxy, will feature heavily in the film.
Release Date: July 22, 2022
The next horror film from Jordan Peele about UFO’s? HELL. YES! I cant wait for this one.
The long awaited return of one of, hands down, one of the best shows on television is finally here! And there’s a hell of a lot to be excited about! Showrunner Eric Kripke has said Season 3 will feature their take on the “HEROGASM!” story line from the comics (And to answer your question: Yes, the story is just as depraved and horrifying as the title would suggest). The season will also see a new addition to the cast, with Jensen Ackles joining the show as, the Captain America-esque, Soldier Boy. This marks a reunion for Eric Kripke and Jensen Akcles, who previously worked together on the hit series, Supernatural. Kripke created the now iconic series, where Ackles played Dean Winchester, one of the show’s two lead characters. The beloved show recently wrapped up it’s incredible, record breaking 15 Season run. Check out the trailer here:
Obi-Wan Kenobi Series (Disney+) 5/27
With the possible exception of The Mandalorian Season 3, there isn’t an upcoming Star Wars project more anticipated the Obi-Wan Kenobi series coming to Disney+. Ewan McGregor is finally making his return to the fan favorite character, but he’s not the only returning character viewers should expect to see. Hayden Christensen is also returning to reprise his role as Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader. Which pretty much guarantees that we’re going to see a rematch between the two, after their epic lightsaber duel on Mustafar in Episode III. In exciting news, it was just announced that the first two episodes will premiere together on May 27th.
Fans had been clamoring for a Kenobi solo project for years, with many people hoping a film focusing on the character would be made under the, “A Star Wars Story“ banner. However, I would argue (and I think most fans would agree) that with all of the incredible storytelling we’ve seen on the Star Wars TV shows, a Disney+ series sounds much more appealing than a 2 hour film. Check out the trailer right here:
The Sandman (Netflix) (TBD)
Like The Lord of The Rings, which was considered to be “un-filmable” for decades, an adaptation of The Sandman would’ve been impossible 15 years ago. Again, like Lord of The Rings, the first obstacle was a technical one. So much of The Sandman is set in places that just simply didn’t exist in the real world. Visual effects would be heavily needed for everything from environment creations, characters, MoCap, augmenting practical effects, and the list goes on and on. We’re finally a point where you can expect to see film quality visual effects and storytelling on a prestige drama on cable or a streaming service. You can see the passion that was put into this project in this Behind-The-Scenes video…
Audiences needed to be ready for this story as well, it’s not something you can watch casually. I think over the last 10 years audiences have been trained by The MCU, Star Wars, Game of Thrones, and other stories that became hits beyond the core audience, to be able to except and buy into a such a sprawling, imaginative fantasy. It’s a truly unique story and I can’t wait to see what they’re doing with it. There hasn’t been official release date announced yet. However we can expect to see the show premiere sometime in Summer 2022. Trust me keep an eye out for this one it’s gonna be something special. Take a look at the first teaser trailer:
The Lord of The Rings: Rings of Power (Amazon Prime) 9/2/22
Amazon Prime’s new take on the classic work ofJ.R.R. Tolkien, taking place during the period surrounding the forging of the original rings of power and Sauron’s eventual rise to The Dark Lord of The Rings. The 8 episode first season cost over $58 Million per episode, making it the most expensive show in TV history. Blowing past the previous titled holder, Marvel’s Disney+ shows, at $25 Million per episode. Here’s the trailer:
Moon Knight (Disney+) 3/30
Well, we don’t have to wait too long for this one, but I felt it was still important to include. Moon Knight is the next Marvel Cinematic Universe series to hit Disney+. The series stars Oscar Isaac as the title character and the always fantastic Ethan Hawke, playing a mysterious new character. Someone at Marvel Studios described the series as “Indiana Jones meets Fight Club”, which is as damn good of a description as I can think of. Moon Knight has some cool supernatural element to it, as well as dealing with a main character who has severe mental health issues. It’s lot to get into, but I think this is going toi be a special one. For once, I wish Marvel would drop alll 6 episodes at when the show premieres. my favorite part about streaming service shows is that the entire season drops when the show premieres. I understand why Disney+ and Marvel don’t adopt that model but every once in a while they could throw us a bone and give us a little treat. Anyway check out the trailer, for a little bit of insight into the series:
The Umbrella Academy (Netflix) 6/22
There isn’t much new info about the umbrella academy season three except for the release date and some cool posters which I have you can see below. If it wasn’t for shows like the boys or invincible, I would say that the umbrella Academy would probably be my favorite superhero show on TV right now I love how offbeat and unique it is and I can’t wait to see the new season.
Ms Marvel (Disney+) 6/6
If Spider-Man were created today, it’d probably look a lot like this. Based on the comic of the same name, Ms. Marvel focuses on New Hersey, high school student Kamala Khan. Kamal is a super hero mega-fan, shocked to find herself incredible new powers. Look for her to be a big player in The Marvels, the upcoming sequel to Captain Marvel.
COMIC BOOKS/GRAPHIC NOVELS
Batman: Beyond The White Knight (DC COMICS)
Following the success of Batman: White Knight and Batman: Curse of The White Knight, writer/artist Sean Murphy is bringing the Batman Beyond mythology into his popular series of Batman graphic novels, with Batman: Beyond The White Knight. As massive fan of all things Batman Beyond this is a MUST READ for me. *Now Available, digitally and at your local comic book store!
Flashpoint Beyond (DC Comics) April 2022
Judgment Day (Marvel Comics)5/7
The Avengers, X-Men, and Eternals face Judgment Day! The MarvelComics event is coming this summer. The year’s biggest stories begin in Marvel’s ‘Free Comic Book Day: Avengers/X-Men’ #1! Which you can pick up at your local comic book store or digitally on May 7.
DARK CRISIS (DC COMICS)5/7 & 6/7
Dark Crisis is THE comic book blockbuster event of the summer! Here’s what DC has to say, below are some preview images and their synopsis of the prelude to Dark Crisis, ”The Death of The Justice League”
Witness the rise and fall of the Justice League! The event years in the making is here with Dark Crisis. The Justice League is comics’ greatest super-team—made up of DC Comics’ legendary Super Heroes, they have saved the world countless times. No crisis was too much for them to handle…until now! The Justice League has been defeated by the Great Darkness and its army of DC’s most dangerous villains—now a new generation of heroes must rise to protect not only the Multiverse…but also the legacy of the DC Universe!
Now for the main event, Dark Crisis #1! Read the synopsis below:
Crisis on Infinite Earths. Infinite Crisis. Final Crisis. And now…Dark Crisis !
The epic event years in the making is finally here! Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, and the rest of the Justice League are dead. The remaining heroes are left to protect the world from an onslaught of violent attacks by DC’s greatest villains! Can the legacy heroes step out of the shadows of the classic heroes to form a new Justice League? And will that be enough to stop a darkness greater than anything they’ve ever faced from destroying everything? Don’t miss out on the first issue of the blockbuster event of the summer!
Dark Crisis #0 FCBD Special Edition will be available on May 7. Justice League: Road to DarkCrisis #1 hits on May 31. Dark Crisis #1 will follow June 7. Check out the teaser below:
Avengers: 1,000,000 B.C. (MARVEL) 7/13/22
Writer – Jason Aaron Artist – Kev Walker
One of the most fascinating aspects of Jason Aaron’s current Avengers run, has been the introduction of The Avengers of 1,000,000 B.C. A primordial team of heroes, who came together to protect a vulnerable Earth from all manner of threats, at the dawn of Mankind. The team consisted of Odin (in his youthful, adventurous, Thor-like days), Lady Phoenix (The Phoenix Force possessing one of Earth’s first mutants), Agamotto (as in “The Eye of Agamotto”, Earth’s original Sorcerer Supreme), Black Panther (One of earliest incarnations of Wakanda’s defenders), The Ghost Rider (On a Wooly mammoth), Iron Fist (The first to face Shoa-Lao The Undying and claim the power of The Iron Fist for herself), and The Starbrand (A caveman wielding the power of The Starbrand, Earth’s natural self-defense system. Kind of like the team’s Hulk).
These characters have been an important part of the story since the beginning of Aaron’s run. This one-shot looks to finally shed some light on the larger role they’ll be playing in the major conflict to come, currently being set up in the Avengers books. Though nothing official has been announced yet, there is definitely a big ol’, mega-blockbuster comic book event in the works, involving Earth’s Mightiest Heroes and I suspect this may be the book where we see things start to kick off.
Here’s Marvel’s official synopsis: “They are the defenders of the dawn of time. Marvel’s first and mightiest legacy heroes. But their greatest secrets have never been revealed. Until now. Witness the dark events that shatter their ranks. See how their lives come to shape the entire future of the Marvel Universe. And be there for the monumental event that reunites them one last time: the true story of Thor’s birth.”
From his work on Wolverine to his already classic Thor run, Jason Aaron has been the mastermind behind some of Marvel’s best books. His current Avengers run has been a total blast from the first issue. Like all of his stories, Aaron often introduces concepts, characters, and story arcs, early on in his books that pay off big time later in the story. It feels like something big is right on the horizon, so now would be a great time to dive right in, or even better, get caught up on the story from the beginning with the collected editions that you can pick up anywhere. That may seem like a lot of graphic novels for some of you, however they aren’t dense breeds and they are incredibly fun and exciting, which will make you breeze through these collected additions faster than you probably think. Below is the list of trade paperbacks, starting with Jason Aaron’s 1st Avengers arc ending with the most recent story. From there you’d be pretty much all caught up:
Avengers Vol.1 The Final Host
Avengers Vol.2 World Tour
Avengers Vol.3 War of The Vampires
Avengers Vol.4 War of The Realms
Avengers Vol.5 Challenge of The Ghost Riders
Avengers Vol.6 Starbrand Reborn
Avengers Vol.7 The Age of Khonshu
Avengers Vol.8 Enter The Phoenix
Avengers Vol.9 World War She-Hulk
Avengers Vol.10 The Death Hunters (Available in July)
That may seem like a lot of graphic novels to some of you, but they aren’t dense reads, the art is beautifully dynamic, and each story arc is incredibly fun and exciting. Which will make you breeze through these collected editions faster than you probably think. If you’re a MCU fan looking to dive into comics, then this series is a MUST READ!
The Maze: A John Corey Novel (Nelson DeMille) 10/11
This thriller is latest installment in the excellent John Corey series of novels. Previous installments include Plum Island, The Lion’s Game, Nightfall, Wild Fire, The Lion, The Panther, Radiant Angel, and the short story, The Book Case
Gotham Knights (PS4) 10/25/22
The next installment in the popular Arkham series of video games, Gotham Knights this story focuses on Bruce Wayne’s protégés Nightwing, Robin, Batgirl, and Red Hood. The inclusion of the group of villains known as The Court of Owls definitely makes the game a lot more exciting to me. This one will be a lot of fun when it comes out. Check out the awesome trailer below:
Thanks for reading! Follow us on Twitter @PJWrightWBM, Instagram @worldsbestmedia2017, and our Facebook Page, Worlds Best Media. Those likes and follows, as well as iTunes reviews for the podcast, go a long way to supporting World’s Best Media. We really appreciate the loyalty and support shown to us by our fans, so thanks again! Stay healthy and stay safe!
Despite their critics, I’ve been a big fan of the Fantastic Beasts films from The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. I found the last film in particular to be very good. So I’m very excited for the third entry in the series, especially with the last film’s killer cliffhanger ending! The latest trailer fo has been released and I think it looks pretty damn cool. Mega-powerful wizards like Dumbledore, Grindelwald, or Creedence, going toe-to-toe, in an all out, epic magical duel, isn’t something we have seen much of in this franchise. If this trailer is to be, believed it looks like we’ll be getting a few of those and then some! Take a look for yourself right here….
Follow us on Twitter @PJWrightWBM, Instagram @worldsbestmedia2017, and our Facebook Page, Worlds Best Media. We really appreciate the loyalty and support shown to us by our fans, so thanks again! Stay healthy and stay safe!
The new trailer for DUNE from director Denis Villeneuve has arrived, and it is by far one of the best trailers I’ve seen in a long time. Especially considering that this was not a movie that I would consider one of my most anticipated of 2021. Normally, this level of excitement for a new trailer is reserved for something like the latest project from The MCU. Shang-Chi and The Legend of The Ten Rings, for example was one of my favorite trailers of the year. (That meta-human fight tournament at the end of the teaser, with Wong fighting THE ABOMINATION! HOLY SHIT!!!). Um, sorry… that got away from me there for a minute. Anyway, back to DUNE…
Take a look at the new trailer right here:
This trailer is a masterpiece in and of itself. It is gorgeous. The cinematography, the colors, the music, all absolutely beautiful. June is being released by Warner Bros. who announced late last year that their entire 2021 film slate would be released in theaters and on HBO Max the same day. Given the context, I can see why they would make a decision like this. The announcement was made in late November, early December of last year, still in the middle of the pandemic. While vaccinations were on the horizon, they were by no means a certainty when Warner Bros. made this decision. Movie theater chains, and the film industry in general, were hit particularly hard by the pandemic. Other streaming services we’re beginning to experiment with releasing large scale films that would normally go straight to theatres. With no guarantees on the horizon, icing that Warner Brothers just wanted a way for their films to be seen by their audience. Many of the filmmakers attached to the movies that were being released in a vastly different way than normal, were very upset by this move on the part of Warner Bros. Denis Villeneuve in particular, was furious. The production company that produced DUNE along with some of Warner Bros most successful films like The Dark Knight Trilogy, Legendary Pictures, wanted to sever ties with the studio and possibly even take legal action. After seeing this trailer I can see why they had such a strong reaction.
I’ve had mixed feelings about the theater going experience over the last several years, so I‘ve been quick to embrace the concept of releasing some of the years biggest movies on streaming services. Having said that, even though I can watch DUNE for free from the comfort of my own home, I’ll be going out of my way to see this film opening weekend at the movie theater. This is the type of movie that begs to be seen on the big screen.
DUNE is based on the classic science fiction novel of the same name by author Frank Herbert. While the book is a seminal work of its genre, DUNE… is a tough read. I’ve always made it a point to read the classics of literature. DUNE is a must read for any sci-fi fan. However, personally, it took A LOT of will power to get through that book when I first read it in college. Even though DUNE is far from one of my favorite sci-fi novels, its easy to see that it has the potential to be an incredible movie.
DUNE is a epic with as much scope and complexity as Game of Thrones or Lord of The Rings. The story, characters, and mythology, all come together to form one of the most influential and celebrated stories in science fiction. If your a fan of the novels (yes, novel(s), DUNE is part of a series of books), you’ll notice specific moments and concepts in the trailer that are pulled straight out the novel. Denis Villeneuve put his own unique vision of the story on screen, yet the characters and story elements are unmistakably recognizable.
Speaking of characters, the cast is spectacular. They’re perfect casting choices, Jason Mamoa, Stellen Skarsgard, and Oscar Issacs, in particular. It’s like the characters popped off the page.
Warner Bros did a hell of a job putting this trailer together. DUNE has become one of my most anticipated movies of the year. Plus, who doesn’t like a giant sand monster?
DUNE debuts in theaters and on HBO Max on 10/22/21
Thanks for reading! Follow us on Twitter @PJWrightWBM, Instagram @worldsbestmedia2017, and our Facebook Page, Worlds Best Media. Those likes and follows, as well as iTunes reviews, go a long way to supporting World’s Best Media. We really appreciate the loyalty and support shown to us by our fans, so thanks again! Stay healthy and stay safe!
From the very beginning of World’s Best Media, one of my missions has been to show people how cool comic books are and why they’re such an incredible way to tell stories (and maybe, just maybe, get some folks to give comics a try). It’s been a little while since I’ve done a deep dive into a comic book series or graphic novel, but a fantastic new series inspired me to take you guys on another journey into weird and wonderful world of comics. Let’s do it!
The book we’re taking a look at, is Batman/Catwoman. One of DC’s flagship Batman books. In my opinion, it’s also one of the best mainstream superhero book being published at either of “The Big Two” right now (otherwise known as DC and Marvel). This is all due to the incredible talent of writer Tom King and artist Clay Mann. These are two of DC’s best creators operating at the top of their game (and it shows).
As a longtime comic book fan, the stories and characters are what draw me in. A book can have the most beautiful art in the world, but it doesn’t mount up to a whole lot without a great story at it’s core. The last thing I want to do is minimize the incredible achievements of the artists working in the comic book industry. Most people don’t understand how important and difficult the work of a comic book artist really is. They’re not just drawing images on a page, they’re performing the characters, they’re directing the story. It’s one thing to draw beautiful images, but to be a great comic book artist, you also have to a great storyteller.
As much as I respect comic book artists, it’s always the writer that will draw me to a particular book.Whenever a writer like Scott Snyder, Grant Morrison, or Neil Gaiman has a new comic coming out, it’s a guaranteed that I’m going to check it out regardless of the artist. Hell, some of my favorite writers have built up enough trust and good will, that I don’t even need to know what their latest book is about to give it a read. There are a lot of great comic book artists, but very few that would make me go out and buy a comic solely because they’re working on it.
This is a long winded way of me saying that artist Clay Mann’s work on Batman/Catwoman is nothing short of astonishing. I’ve been following his work for a while on Batman and Heroes In Crisis. However his work has just taken a massive leap forward with Batman/Catwoman. I don’t think I’ve been more impressed with an artists work in a long time. Mann’s work reminds me of Jim Lee or Tony Daniel, with its crisp detailed lines. It’s widely considered that Jim Lee drew the definitive modern Batman during his Hush story line. Jim Lee’s Batman from Hush is pretty much the basis for all modern versions of the character since. Now, Clay Mann has drawn the definitive modern Catwoman with this book and if things keep going the way they are, he may take the title away from Jim Lee for the definitive modern Batman as well.
It’s not just the art that makes this book so phenomenal. Batman: Mask of The Phantasm is arguably one of, if not THE best Batman film ever made. Unlike so many other Batman Films, even the great ones, Bruce Wayne is front and center in this story. Bruce Wayne is the most interesting character in any Batman story and most filmmakers get caught up in his flashy rogues gallery at the expense of exploring Batman himself. When I was a kid The Phantasm scared the shit out of me with its creepy look and unstoppable mission of vengeance. The Phantasm was an original character created by the people who made that film. Batman/Catwoman is a quasi-sequel to Batman: Mask of The Phatasm, making the character and the events of the film canon in DC lore.
This comic is really a continuation of the story that writer Tom King first began in his excellent run on the main Batman series. The question at the heart of the story was: Can Batman be happy? And If the answer if yes, can a happy Batman still be Batman? Can a Bruce Wayne who’s found some measure of peace still be The Dark Knight that Gotham City, and the world, needs? I thought it was a fantastic idea for a Batman story. It has so much potential and in the long history of the character it’s isn’t something that had been explored before. Also, let’s not forget that just because Bruce has found a woman who truly loves and understands him doesn’t mean he’s going start going on Costco runs. Their marriage consists of Selena joining Batman on cases and nightly patrols just like Nightwing or Robin would except after they go home and fuck each other‘s brains out (come to think of it, who’s to say that didn’t happen with Nightwing a few times? After all, Master Dick looks damn good in a lm skin tight leotard!). King explored this idea through Bruce’s growing romance with Selina Kyle. After years of hook ups and on again off again romances, Bruce and Selena finally get serious. They get engaged, and eventually, after some drama including Selena leaving bruise standing at the aisle during their first wedding attempt, things worked out and now they live as husband and wife. Living together in Wayne Manor.
Out of all the incredibly fascinating characters that populates Batman’s world, I was never particularly interested in Catwoman. I love Michelle Pfeiffer as the character in Batman Returns, but other than that, I was fairly ambivalent about Catwoman in general. It wasn’t until Tom King’s Batman run and Batman/Catwoman, that I started to really like her. Batman and Catwoman have had an off and on romance for years, one of their more notable attempts at a real relationship took place in the classic Jeph Loeb and Jim Lee story, “Hush”. Batman and Catwoman getting married may seem like another gimmick like the death or resurrection of a hero, but it makes perfect sense for the characters. So many storytelling possibilities open up. Catwoman is a character who lives in the gray, so what is it like being married to a man who only sees things in black-and-white? The story puts Selena in morally compromising situations in some really imaginative ways
This story is essentially a quasi-sequel to The Mask of Phantasm. Which is really cool because The Phantasm was an original character created for that film, so her inclusion here officially brings her into the main canon of DCU. But this is a Batman story after all, and if Andrea Beaumont has returned to Gotham City, you can be sure that she’s there for blood.
The story takes place simultaneously over three different time periods. The present, the past when Bruce and Selena we’re still more of an occasional romantic tryst than the serious couple and life partners that they’ve become, and decades into the future where Bruce has recently passed away. Leaving behind his beloved wife Selina and their beautiful daughter Helena. With Bruce gone the elderly Selina finally feels free to settle a vicious vendetta with The Joker. Specially for something that occurred years before with Andrea Beaumont, during the case involving The Phantasm that Batman and Catwoman are taking on in the present. Complicating matters in the future is Helena Wayne, who’s continuing the family business as Batwoman. She also seems to have inherited her father’s naive sense of absolute justice. Bringing the story full circle showing Selina keeping secrets about her morally questionable choices from the two most people in her life, Bruce in the past and her daughter Helena in the future.
Which brings me back to Clay Mann’s beautiful artwork. I love his design for Helena Wayne, the daughter of Bruce Wayne and Selina Kyle, the Batwoman of the future. Both in and out of costume, Helena is of course her mother and father‘s daughter. A Gorgeous, stunning young woman while having dinner with her mother in Wayne Manor and looking all kinds of cool and bad ass in her new Batwoman suit. Which looks like a combination of the Batman Beyond suit and the modern version of Catwoman’s costume Mann has designed for this series.
This series is a great jumping on point for new readers because you only need to have seen the movie Batman: Mask of The Phantasm. If you’re looking for a fantastic superhero story with fantastic art, writing, and characters, then you can’t go wrong with Batman/Catwoman.
Thanks for reading! Follow me on Twitter @PJWrightWBM or type Worlds Best Media into the search bar, you can also like and follow us on our Facebook page; World’s Best Media. We’re on Instagram @worldsbestmedia2017. Those likes and follows, as well as iTunes reviews, go a long way to supporting World’s Best Media. We really appreciate the loyalty and support shown to us by our fans, so thanks again! Stay healthy and stay safe!
A few years ago, I read a book called “The Knife of Never Letting Go,” by Patrick Ness. It’s not the greatest title, but immediately it was one of my favorite books. It was written in a way that was bizarre and interesting, and I was captivated from the beginning. The book is the first in a trilogy called “The Chaos Walking” trilogy. I read the entire trilogy as quickly as I could, and while the first book is by far my favorite, the entire trilogy is good.
The film adaptation of these books is coming out on January 22, 2021 (that is of course assuming things don’t get changed in the wake of the pandemic). As far as I can tell from the trailer, which was released today, the film will be adapting the trilogy as a whole and not the first book, and I’m not hating that. Here’s what I think about the upcoming adaptation, and the books, along with the trailer.
Before You Watch the Trailer
I don’t want to say much about these books, because I do think this is a situation in which going in with as little info as possible is going to enhance the experience. The trailer does somewhat spoil some of the secrets of the first book. I think that because of the way they are—necessarily—changing the telling of the story, the reveal of the first book would make absolutely no sense, but if you’re planning on reading the books before seeing the film, I strongly recommend reading at least the first book before watching the trailer.
The trailer shows you glimpses of events past the big reveal of the first book, but I don’t think there is much that is going to be ruined if you’ve read only the first book.
What Can I Tell You Without Spoiling?
Here is one of the things that I think if you pick up the book at a book store, and literally flip through it you would learn, so I don’t feel bad spoiling for you. This book doesn’t follow a layout the way pretty much every novel I’ve ever read has. This book, along with House of Leaves, are the only two books I’ve read, where margins and orientation are inconsistent, and messed with as a part of the story telling.
In this book, (minor spoiler here) we meet Todd, a boy who lives on a planet where everyone’s thoughts are projected aloud into the air for all to see and hear. The constant bombardment of these thoughts to the characters is reflected in scrawling text, sometimes looking like a notebook which has been writing has been written over.
This factor of the world is not a minor aspect, but affects seemingly everything that happens in all three books, and so when I read that the book was going to be adapted, I was genuinely curious as to how it was going to work. Based on what I’ve seen in the trailer it looks like they’ve come up with a pretty cool way of selling it.
Three Books—One Movie?
I could be wrong on this, but based on the trailer, I think they’re telling the whole story in one film, I think it’s a smart decision. In a world in which most novels are better translated into shows than films, I think this book series doing the opposite makes a lot of sense.
The three books while running high on page counts, don’t tell long stories. In fact, it’s very much three acts of the same story. A lot of the page count is dedicated to style and world building, and I suspect that on film both will be done much more efficiently than the novels. I’d rather see the whole story told well over the course of one film, than poorly over the course of three or four.
Ready for the Trailer?
If you’ve read the books already, or you’re thinking that you’re not going to, go ahead and watch the trailer. But this is your last warning. Watching this trailer will spoil what was personally one of my favorite aspects of the book. So I won’t tell you what to do, but like any good parent, I will guilt trip you and just say “I think you know the right thing, I just hope you choose to do it.”
On this episode of the show, Tim Cuff, Host of the hit podcast, Cuff’s Basement, makes his triumphant return to The World’s Best Podcast! Co-hosting this episode with me, Tim and I discuss multiple fascinating topics, including: the recent Netflix revival of Unsolved Mysteries…
Our potentially controversial on Joe Rogan and his podcast The Joe Rogan Experience…
We also bring up Peace Talks, the latest novel in the New York Times Bestselling Urban Fantasy series, The Dresden Files. From there we discuss fantasy literature as a whole and much more!
Thanks for listening! Follow me on Twitter @PJWrightWBM or type Worlds Best Media into the search bar, you can also like and follow us on our Facebook page; World’s Best Media. Those likes and follows, as well as iTunes reviews, go a long way to supporting World’s Best Media. We really appreciate the loyalty and support shown to us by our fans, so thanks again! Stay healthy and stay safe!
*Editor’s Note: Paul is on vacation this week, and fairly disconnected from the world, so hopefully this quench your thirst for World’s Best Articles.
I’m about a month late on this, but largely because I don’t know how many people who weren’t looking for this news would have found it, so my hope is that it’s still fresh or brand new to many of you.
I’m a big Percy Jackson fan, I read the entire “Percy Jackson and The Olympians” series after seeing the first movie. Then I saw the second movie, and I was fuming. Imagine if Voldemort had returned and had his big showdown with Harry in the third book instead of the seventh, basically that was how the second movie was. Fans of the movies, between the undercutting that the second film did and no rumors of a third movie, thought the series was done on film. It sucked, because some of the best stuff was yet to come, and it never came.
Well, as I’ve said on here a few times before, I have a four-year-old, and so I’m always looking for new entertainment, and when the first movie, “Percy Jackson and The Lightning Thief” was added to Disney +, I decided to show it to him. It was a little more intense than I remembered, but my son can handle it. After watching it he was obsessed, and asked me all about it, I could remember some of the details on my own, and some I had to look up, and when I looked it up, I found out that Rick Riordan (the author of the books) had announced that they were going to be making a Disney + show, and expressed his own disappointment with the films. He basically said that he hadn’t seen the films but had read the scripts and described the process as seeing his life’s work “put through a meat grinder.”
It sounds like Rick Riordan will have a considerable amount of control in the show, I don’t know if that’s a good thing or a bad thing. Rick being the creator of the books implies that there will be a certain level of faithfulness to the books that the films lacked, and I think they do need to follow the structure closer in order to allow the full story to play out properly. My worry, is over faithfulness. Let’s use the Star Wars Prequel trilogy as an example. George Lucas had full control, and that meant that clunky dialogue and bad acting went unchecked, a trilogy that I would argue with better dialogue and acting may have been the best in the series, was somewhat squandered. In addition to the prequels, in between Episodes I and II, we started into the Harry Potter film adaptations, and while I really like the Harry Potter films, they did one thing for the film industry that I’m not sure was a good thing; they made fans want as faithful and literal of a film translation as possible to source material. There was no more ‘spirit’ of the concept in adaptations, and if you got the wrong color cat for a scene, fans would go nuts (looking at you Hunger Games fans).
With something that as specific of a story as the Percy Jackson series has, I want faithfulness in structure, and spirit, but I don’t want them to try to recreate dialogue from the book verbatim, unless it works, or is important (i.e. prophecies and things like that). I hope Riordan realizes that a show isn’t a book, and is able to adapt for that audience. I don’t know if he can or cannot, because his only IMDb credits are Percy Jackson related, and he had minimal control on the films. He could be great, and he could be awful.
Personally, I’m excited that there will be a new Percy Jackson series, and if it’s good, I hope they go through the sequel series “Heroes of Olympus,” which follows some of the characters in the Percy Jackson series, along with some Roman demigods. That’s kind of the cool thing about this series, if it’s adapted well, there are a ton of possibilities to keep going, or for spin-offs.
In the mean time, if you’re not familiar with the series, you have at least a year to read the first book before the show starts in 2021, and I would highly recommend the book series.
Another year has come to an end, but before we ring in the New Year, I wanted to leave you all with one more entry in my recommendation series: Paul’s Picks! Let’s dive in…
House of X/Powers of X by Jonathan Hickman
This is by far the best superhero graphic novel of the year, if not the last several years. Jonathan Hickman has delivered one of the most wildly unique superhero comics I’ve read in a long time. Something about the X-Men allows for new creators to come into that world and wildly shake things up. They put their unique brand on the characters and the story, all the while always feeling like an X-Men tale. Chris Claremont did it with Giant Size X-Men #1, Grant Morrison did it with New X-Men, Joss Whedon did it with Astonishing X-Men, and now Jonathan Hickman has done it again with House of X/Powers of X.
The best part is you don’t have to be familiar with recent X-Men comics understand the story, you just need a basic knowledge of who the X-Men are. The hardcover volume I have is a special edition that actually came with a lithograph signed by Jonathan Hickman, which is pretty cool, but don’t expect it to be come with every edition (this was a special order).
Most other editions of this hardcore graphic novel have a different, but still beautiful wrap around cover. If you’ve ever been interested in superhero comics or if you wanted to get back into comic books, this is a must read.
As I’ve talked about on this website many times, I love the DC animated movies that come out every year. One of the better ones in recent memory has been The Death of Superman storyline which was broken into two different films. The first, The Death of Superman focuses on Clark Kent’s growing romantic relationship with Lois Lane and ultimately Superman’s fight to the death with the vicious monster, Doomsday. While Reign of The Supermen is about how the World, The Justice League, Lois Lane, and even Lex Luthor all deal with the loss of Earth’s greatest hero. Now this excellent story can be watched seamlessly as one beautiful animated film: The Death and Return of Superman. Much like their adaptation of The Dark Knight Returns, which was split into two separate film releases and then eventually released as one film under The Dark Knight Returns Deluxe Edition, The Death and Return of Superman is best enjoyed as one movie.
My last pick is Quentin Tarantino’s latest film Once Upon A Time In Hollywood. I’m a huge Tarantino fan, but to be honest I was disappointed with his most recent directorial effort. Don’t get me wrong, DiCaprio and Pitt are great and there’s a lot to like in this movie, but it just didn’t wow me like Tarantino’s movies usually do. I know I’m in the minority on this one, the film was a huge critical success and most of my friends loved it as well, including World’s Best Media’s own Ryan McDonald. However, just because I wasn’t blown away doesn’t mean I didn’t want to add the film to my Blu-Ray collection. My personal selection was the Best Buy Exclusive Steelbook Blu-Ray/4K edition. I love me some steelbook Blu-rays!
So that’s it for my picks in 2019! Look for me to continue this article series more frequently in the coming year. Have a safe and Happy New Year! See you in 2020!
Thanks for reading! Follow me on Twitter @PJWrightWBM or type Worlds Best Media into the search bar, you can also like and follow us on our Facebook page; World’s Best Media. Those likes and follows, as well as iTunes reviews, which go a long way to supporting World’s Best Media. We really appreciate the loyalty and support shown to us by our fans, so thanks again!