Thoughts On Batman V Superman

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The online narrative around Batman V Superman is that it is the worst thing ever committed to film and that by watching it you are a terrible person. Like the worst. Especially if you found yourself enjoying it. If that happened then you need to revaluate your whole life and consider changing your name to something like Hitler. The film is just that bad you guys! In reality though it seems there is a disconnect between critical and fan reaction that I have not seen before.

The short-ish version is:

If you enjoyed Man of Steel, Batman V Superman is a good followup. It continues to expand the somewhat darker take on the DC characters that DC Cinematic Universe is building in a fun and very different way to the Marvel Studios movies and their slate of characters. Like Man of Steel it has a slower pace than other superhero movies and a lot of it is dedicated to building up the big conflict at the end of the movie. Ben Affleck makes a great Batman, Jesse Eisenberg’s Lex Luthor is different in a good way (for me at least) and Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman steals the show in the brief appearances she makes in the movie. The film also does a good job of building out the DC Cinematic Universe in a couple of cool ways. It is far from perfect and it has its flaws like Man of Steel had but it is still a good and entertaining movie.

Personally I really enjoyed it and would say it is on par with the majority of Marvel’s movies. For me it is a case of the critics and reviews being overly harsh with a lot of them boiling down to “This isn’t the same as a Marvel movie so I don’t like it!”, “This is not how I personally perceive these long established characters to be or behave, therefore this film is a crime against nature!” or “I hate Zack Snyder and everything he stands for so I hate this movie by default!” There is also the typical regurgitation without thought of certain lines of thinking that seems to plague all discussion on the internet these days. So much so that you could make a bingo card and have some fun reading through the comments and reviews for Batman V Superman. (FYI: “Zack Snyder loves Ayn Rand!” is the free space.)

If you are interested in the characters or the concept of the film, go watch it and crucially, form your own opinions on it because it has been given a bad rap by many.

The long version is a bit more complicated…

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DC Rebirth First Info!

(Video Source: CBR)

“I love this world… but there’s something missing.”

That is the line that will be kicking off DC’s upcoming Rebirth event and initiative. In the above video Geoff Johns breaks down the general idea behind Rebirth. It looks like it is going to be a continuation of the New 52 but reincorporating the classic and iconic elements from the legacy of the older DC Universe. Pretty much what he did with Green Lantern and Flash Rebirth. However this is a line wide initiative that Johns is overseeing. Which is an interesting move.

At the centre of it all is a doubling down on DC’s most bankable properties. (Yay!) At the cost of loosing some of the more interesting side books and character. (Boo!) Lowering the price of all the books back down to $2.99. (Holding the Line once again!), Signing new teams onto books and gaining some new exclusive creator contracts. (Yay!) Taking Action Comics and Detective Comics back to their original numbering. (Yay!…I guess…) Then finally, shifting a large portion of their series into a biweekly release schedule. (Yay! but my bank account says nay!)

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The Pull List 03/02/2016

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Every week I throw my money into the bottomless pit that is regular comic book reading.

Here is what I will be entertaining myself with this week along with snippets of my feelings towards said books prior to reading them:

DC

  • Action Comics #49
    • The saga of powerless Superman continues!
    • This crossover of sorts between the various Superman books is surprisingly entertaining and is paying off on the last year’s worth of stories.
  • Batgirl #48
    • Bright, colourful and always fun to read.
  • Batman & Robin Eternal #18
    • The answers are slowly coming! Some a good, some are a bit…boring.
  • Detective Comics #49
    • Robo-Batman minus the Robo equals some solid detective work from Jim.

Marvel

  • Amazing Spider-Man #7
    • I love Dan Slott’s Spider-Man but so far this has felt like it is too big of a departure from classic Spidey for me.
    • It is like Peter Parker is trying a bit too hard to be Tony Stark.
  • Captain America: Sam Wilson #6
    • This book is crazy in a good way.
    • It is full of pulpy ideas and has great moments for both character and story.
  • Invincible Iron Man #6
    • Loving Bendis’ take on Iron Man, making him feel on the cutting edge again.
    • It will be interesting to see the contrast between Mike Deodato Jr. art for this issue and David Marquez’s from the first arc.
  • Nova #6
    • I love this book.
    • It is where the fun is at!
  • Star Wars: Obi-Wan & Anakin
    • Issue one introduced us to an old fashioned adventure story that explores the Post Episode I Obi-Wan/Anakin dynamic.
    • I’m interested to see how it plays out.
    • + Steampunk airships in Star Wars!
  • Spider-Man #1
    • Miles Morales is finally getting his dues as a mainline Marvel Prime Universe character!
  • Uncanny Avengers #5
    • Its been a bit of a rocky start so far but I am willing to follow it for one or two more issues.

Image/Other

  • Klaus #3
    • It is the Secret Origin of Santa Claus!
    • It is written by Grant Morrison!
    • It is actually a good read!
  • The Walking Dead #151
    • After finishing another calm before the storm stage The Walking Dead is getting exciting again!

The Pull List 27/01/16

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Every week I throw my money into the bottomless pit that is regular comic book reading.

Here is what I will be entertaining myself with this week along with snippets of my feelings towards said books prior to reading them:

Marvel

  • All-New Inhumans #3
    • I am semi-enjoying the new prime position status quo for the Inhumans in the Marvel Universe.
    • They are like the X-Men without the baggage of the X-Men continuity.
    • There is freedom for weirdness to happen which is great!
  • All-New, All-Different Avengers #4
    • I’m loving the new team but this series has not felt like it has got going yet. Hopefully this issue will fix that.
    • The cover is very kissy, kissy!
  • Star Wars: Kanan #10
    • This is the little Star Wars comic that could and I have really enjoyed it.
    • It is an interesting look at the background of one of the newer expanded universe  characters.
  • The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #4
    • The best comic on the shelves ever.
    • Seriously it is one of the highlights of my week when I get to read a new issue.
    • If you haven’t read it go read it.

DC

  • Batman & Robin Eternal #17
    • A bit of a slow burn of a series but the globe trotting adventure is starting to pay off.
    • All the Azrael is boring me to tears though, I really don’t like the character.
  • Grayson #16
    • Who knew Dick Grayson, Super Spy would be continue to be such a good book?!
    • I’m looking forward to seeing how the new post Robin War Dick Grayson handles his new….situation
  • Justice League of America #7
    • Beautiful art that make the book worth it.
    • The mildly confusing/boring story is letting the side down though.
  • Superman #48
    • Things are starting to come to a head for the underpowered Superman and it is exciting!
    • It has been an interesting ride but I am starting to get restless for Superman getting all his powers back.

Image/Other

  • Saga #33
    • The best comic being published at the moment.
    • The.
    • Best.
    • Comic.
    • Read it!

DC…Rebirth?

Later this year the books that are still around from DC’s big New 52 Relaunch five-ish years ago will hit their 52nd issues. Which is a perfect time for DC to clean house and have another big push at selling people a bunch of comics. Especially when you take into account the DC Cinematic Universe taking things to the next level with Batman V Superman.

I’ve always been a fan of what the New 52 stood for despite some of the more questionable changes it lead to. For me comics are at their best when big epic things and change happens. So teasing of a big relaunch always has me interested.

However I doubt that this will be a big reboot on the scale of Flashpoint to the New 52. More of a soft realignment of characters and stories that have gotten out of whack with the rest of the setting and maybe pushing the overall house tone and style to fit with the DC movies and TV shows a bit more. All of which I have no problem with what so ever.

Until we know more I will just have to enjoy the rage and collective gnashing of teeth from the anger side of the comics internet. Which is always entertaining!

So yeah #Rebirth

DC Comics 2015 Mini Relaunch

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Today DC being big fans of relaunches and line wide changes, announced that from this June they will be doing a mini-relaunch of sorts after the Convergence event finishes. It is a smart move and shows that DC are continuing to grow and foster diversity in their line of books post Flashpoint. While The New 52 was all about having a fresh start this mini-relaunch is all about letting creators do what they want with the characters.

According to Dan DiDio, continuity is now very much a low priority which is great! It will be there for the books that want and need it but for the more out there and unique titles it will not be a concern. I love continuity and it can be used to tell amazing stories but it is just not a necessity for every book featuring a DC character. Also this new approach makes it easy to position certain books as being new reader friendly.

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Putting the Super back into Superman

superman32This week sees a new era dawn for the New 52 Superman book. Not only has Geoff Johns returned to writing a character that he has given us some of his best work but this time he is also joined by superstar artist (and my personal favourite comic book artist) John Romita Jr.

Superman #32 hits the ground running and delivers to the reader a fun and action packed Superman comic. Which is great because since the New 52 started Superman has been a very mixed bag of a book. Constantly brought down by crossovers and ill thought out stories. So it is great to see the character back on form doing what he does best, saving the day.

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Geoff Johns Superman Sale

Superman Sale

Superman Sale Link

For the next seven days ComiXology are having a sale on all of Geoff Johns’ run with Superman and I implore you to check it out. These are some of the best Superman comic books and story lines of the past decade and really show Johns’ talent as a writer. He gets to the core of what makes Superman, Superman and manages to do so with gripping stories full of action and drama. Which is something many Superman comics sadly lack.

The sale is of course to wet your appetite for Geoff Johns and John Romita Jr’s takeover of the New 52 Superman this month.

Out of what is available I would recommend you read:

  • Last Son (Action Comics #844-846, #851 & Action Comics Annual #11)
  • Escape from Bizarro World (Action Comics #855-#857)
  • Superman and the Legion of Super-Heroes (Action Comics #858-#863)
  • Brainiac (Action Comics #866-#870)

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75 Years of Superman celebrated in the coolest way possible

This wonderful piece of animation has been put together in part to celebrate Superman hitting 75 and also to help promote the Man of Steel Blu-Ray release in December. Directed by Zack Snyder the animation gives you glimpses at the key moments in the character’s history both in print & on screen. To sum it up: it is simply wonderful!

Yes it got me all emotional seeing how the character has changed over the years and seeing the key moments that I personally remember. Such as watching the Christopher Reeve movies on TV as a child, the Bruce Timm style animation I love from the Superman Animated Series and Justice League cartoons. Along with several comic book story lines and issues I have read over the years.

Superman 75 years logo

More than anything though, it shows how much the character has changed and been adapted for the times over the years while still remaining true to the initial core concept. 75 years of change, both good and bad. Cartoons and movies, both good and bad. Comic books, both really good and really bad. Oh and the odd really terrible video game cropping up every now and then!

The character and his mythos continues to endure and grow with each new generation. Superman is a constant fixture in pop culture and a hero that everyone knows of no matter how well versed in comic books and superheroes they are.

This short piece of awesome is  huge “Cheers!” to the character and the promise of 75 more years of the blue boy scout saving the day.

UPDATE:

superman_75_short_line_up_by_dusty_abell-d6qostxArtist Dusty Abell has shared the designs for all the various Supermen featured in the short over on his deviantart page.

Belated Awesomeness of the Week!

Only just finished reading last week’s comics! (How unlike me 😀 )