You know, I thought things had gotten pretty crazy in the second episode of this totally killer book, but I was off. I was way off. What issue two offered was a little wild… issue three however, is absolutely nutso awesome!
The second issue of Batman and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Adventures manages to far surpass the entertainment value of the first. And the first issue was good, need I remind you.
How could we not review this?
Two of the greatest… well, five of the greatest heroes to ever land within the pages of a comic book together to kick… well, nothing yet, really.
If you were to travel back in time just a few decades, look me directly in the eye and inform me that in 2016 there would be few, if any films hotter than comic book transfers.
It never seemed like a reality. Filmmakers were struggling to get the look and special effects up to snuff through the 90s, so when you saw a superhero movie, you knew it was a rarity. In 2016 however, it’s the expected, and the norm. Imagine pulling comic flicks from the lineup these days – raged out basement dwelling 30-somethings would overpower towns, torches and pitchforks wielded carelessly.
Well, don’t sweat it too much, nerds, we’re not going to see a drop-off of comic book films in the near future. We may never see comic book transfers fade into obscurity. This movement feels more like the birth of a new genre rather than the birth of a new fad.
Comic book movies are just too damn entertaining, gratifying and generally enjoyable to anticipate a departure from the Hollywood spotlight anytime soon.
Thank god. My inner Super Geek knows I’d cry two full rivers if the market began turning away from superhero movies. But as long as these pieces are doing the kind of numbers they’ve done throughout the first half of 2016, they’re here to stay.
Speaking of the success of these pictures, let’s take a look at how the focal four films released this calendar year have fared at the box office.
In the second episode of Batman: The Animated Series we see that someone is setting out to frame Batman, attacking individuals at night while decked out as a flying bat. First instinct says it’d Man-Bat, but another genius crook pulling off such a stunt doesn’t seem to be out of the realm of possibility.
When Batman gets down to the hands on investigation, he makes a mistake in letting himself be glimpsed. Wouldn’t you know it, Bullock is gung-ho and hot on Batman’s trail, obviously convinced he’s the one responsible for all of these attacks.
Through the streets of Gotham he barrels. And… did I mention the vintage look of these cartoons has always been amazing, and one of the true elements that sets this animated Batman series apart from all others? Well, now I have.
Commissioner Gordon shows up just in time to inform Bullock that a pharmacy across town is in the process of being robbed. And, of course, it’s a bat committing such theft, thus proving that Bullock has the wrong guy – no doubt about it.
That’s Bullock for you… being… well, Bullock.
It doesn’t take long for Batman to learn that there’s something shady about Doctors March and Kirk Langstrom. You can bet your batarang he’s going to force the truth from these two in a hurry, just to ensure he keeps his name clear.
It takes but minutes for Batman to catch Langstrom in the act of transforming. And to be real, it’s a pretty damn frightening scene to behold, as the doc undergoes a surprisingly complex transformation before settling in to the role of the Man-Bat as we know him.
The story takes an interesting turn when Batman decides against turning the Man-Bat in to law enforcement, instead opting to bring him back to the Bat Cave, where perhaps something can be done for the man/monster.
Can the doc be saved? Is he doomed to transform for the rest of his days? How will his lovely wife handle the turmoil? Oh the drama!
This is a great episode, and I love that this animated series comes right out of the gate swinging big, looking for the homerun. It’s not some multi-episode, drawn out origin we dive into, it’s all out chaos with plenty of familiar and fan favorite Batman foes. Dissecting this entire series is going to be a blast!
I’ll always be a sucker for three specific DC characters: The Flash, Superman and Batman. They’re all compelling characters with great depth, diverse personalities and an assortment of cool villains to tangle with. While we don’t get to see any crazy involvement from The Flash in Superman and Batman: Public Enemies, we get more than enough thrills from Supes and the Bat.
Knowing how much I adore these characters, this is hard to admit, but I get a morbid kick out of any opportunity to see both Superman and Batman made to look like true villains. You can bet with Lex Luthor having been recently elected as the president of the United States, these two are going to take a public shellacking. Lex Luthor doesn’t disappoint.
Luthor plays the manipulator here and gradually encourages the people of Metropolis, as well as every hero and villain alive to view these two in a different light. Obviously, Luthor wants to be done with Superman, and if he can take out the bat in the process, great. But it won’t be easy, even after recruiting every savage you can think of.
So who exactly wants to kill these two? Captain Atom, Captain Marvel, Solomon Grundy, Metallo, Gorilla Grodd, Starfire, Mongul, Lady Shiva and… well, the list just goes on and on. And that means that Public Enemies is really just a showcase for every awesome DC character on the roster. It’s a blast to see!
The script is solid, the artwork is beautiful and seeing Superman and Batman bond over tough times is good fun in my mind. The flick is non-stop action, which also holds some huge appeal. All in all, director Sam Liu did a bang up job of creating one of the more entertaining feature length Batman/Superman films.
If you’re a DC freak, this is a must-see!
When it comes to Batman and his lengthy history, there are a few must-read stories. Stories that altered the way we view and think of Batman, and some of his greatest foes. Alan Moore just so happens to be responsible for more than a single one of those stories. My personal favorite, however, is less about Batman and more about Joker than anything. It’s only appropriate that the book be titled Batman: The Killing Joke.
What we get here is no doubt the greatest Joker story ever told. It’s a bold thing to craft a Joker origin story. It’s far bolder to tell that story all the while pushing Batman’s greatest villain to depravities unknown even to this legendary monster. Never has the grinning one been so cutthroat and vile. Never has he pushed Batman in such fashion. Never has he been so frightening.
That’s another element of the book that steals my soul. This is a genuinely frightening Batman book, and that’s brilliant. While I adore the silliness that comes with some of the earlier Detective Comics issues, I’ve been much more keen on edgier tales (Shadow of the Bat was a brilliant run), and this fits the bill.
So, as we’re reading this issue, we find ourselves – for the first time in a long time – wondering if Batman will actually capture the Joker before he can slaughter an excessive amount of decent Gothamites. That’s a mystery we don’t typically get from Batman books, and it’s absolutely amazing.
What more can be said of this one other than major, major respect to the legendary Alan Moore and the master of cover art, and former boss of the insides, artist Brian Bolland. These two are mind bogglingly good together. These men don’t make comic books, they make very real, very respectful artwork that, as The Killing Joke proves, is truly timeless.
We love Batman at his darkest. Nobody broods better. Nobody punishes better. Nobody just goes toe to toe with the friggin’ Ripper!
Okay. Batman does… all of those things.
This new short film is a complete blast. Nice production values, fine cinematography, great performances and a tone that might just shock you. It’s cool seeing two legendary figures, for two entirely different reasons, tangling to the bitter end…
You’ve got to watch this, plain and simple. James Campbell writes and directs.
The film stars Bill Fellows, Donald Standen, Jacob Anderton, Kris Saddler, Sally Collett, Victoria Gibson, Eilidh Talman and Bruce Payne.
Superheroes have held the attention of the young and old alike for decades. Comic books – the primary channel in which superheroes appear – have given us that avenue to escape reality, even if only for a short period of time. Who hasn’t read a Batman book and thought, I wish I could rid the streets of my city like that, looking sleek in that black suit! Most comic book lovers have always been able to relate to the human side of heroes while admiring their otherworldly gifts. Those are natural responses. We love heroes. We love what they typically stand for. We love the fact that heroes can do what we can’t. That’s why we admire them. That’s why we admire the following 25 superheroes, because there’s humanity and courage in every last one of them.
Massive, amnesiac green dude equipped with a head fin. Did we mention he’s a cop? Still going strong after well over 200 issues, this is one dude you simply don’t want to tangle with. Kudos to creator Erik Larsen for creating a genuinely fresh superhero.
Namor is so overlooked it’s really quite heartbreaking. Maybe Marvel should pull his tail out of the depths and let the company’s first official mutant actually get some shine! All the options on the table… all swept away by the sea.
Green Lantern (Hal Jordan)
Okay, so Green Lantern went through a few sketchy times. Who doesn’t nearly destroy masses when possessed by some weirdo? What matters is that Hal got his head clear and his mojo back. This dude is game for any showdown. Big or small, fast or slow – line ‘em up and Green Lantern will handle his business.
Peter Parker’s become much trendier over the last few decades. In fact, read just about any Spidey title on the shelves and you’ll note that he’s now become something of a cool cat. He’s still got jokes, though, and that’s a big relief. He’s also got an assortment of enemies to throttle that is rivaled only by the great Batman.
It feels like Aquaman doesn’t kick ass with as much flare of some of his fellow DC heroes. That’s probably because everything moves in slow motion once fully submerged. While that may never change, there are options to transform this noble stud. I mean, really, why not a modern day crossover that pits Aquaman and Namor? That would be awesome!
Be honest with yourselves: You love Captain Marvel. He’s a little pipsqueak kid with big dreams, a big heart and the ability to transform into a hulking crime fighting machine, just by using a silly childlike word: SHAZAM!
The Flash (Barry Allen)
I’m not going to lie to you, I’m a fan of every man to ever embrace the Flash moniker. Jay Garrick, Wally West, Bart Allen and of course, Barry Allen. Regardless of who donned the suit, these guys were amazing. Using their brains to contact outrageous inventions in labs, speeding through the city to prevent a mugging, speeding right back to the other side of the city to ensure Captain Cold gets a dose of warmth before he ruins some unsuspecting soul’s meal. The Flash is amazing, and Barry may be the man who has done him most justice over the years.
I recall reading an ancient copy of Fantastic Four, and while little of the details stick out to me (I read the book back in 1988/1989 and it was already an older issue), I still haven’t let go of this minor tirade that Johnny Storm launches into, pissing and moaning about the challenges his super-powers bring about. As I recall, Thing put him in his place. But, to get that self-loathing from a guy who enjoys putting up a cocky front was great. It was a rare moment spent looking at the real Human Torch, who, as it turns out, has just as many inhibitions as you and I.
Martial Manhunter should, theoretically, be the baddest hero in existence. He should, realistically, have a half dozen monthly titles dedicated to him. He’s like Superman multiplied by 100, with telepathy, invisibility, telekinesis and the ability to shape-shift (I feel like I’m missing a few of his other powers). And that should pretty much guarantee the Manhunter can and will win every battle he ever engages in. Unfortunately, despite his tremendous skill set, Martian Manhunter often goes overlooked by fans. My theory? You’re all a bunch of racists, unwilling to give a green man a fair shake.
The first deeply mature and refined pupil of Professor X, Cyclops always has his head on straight, always looks out for his fellow X-mates and never hesitates when it’s time to react. He’s one of the leaders of the X-Men for a myriad of reasons. And to his credit, he’s found himself in some very precarious situations. And he always stagger emerges from the dust and rubble. To top it all off, he’s been engaged in some great feuds, each vying for Jean Grey’s love. Guess who put a ring on it?
Nick Fury is basically a super spy extraordinaire with the skills to treat the Avengers like simple puppets. Although Nick holds those powerful strings, he can also be a threat in good old fashioned hand-to-hand combat. Need another reason we love Fury so much? He makes every man on earth want to wear an eyepatch. You gotta be a special son-of-a-gun to make the eye patch cool.
A socially conscious and heavily opinionated gent, Oliver Queen is gnarly in the best of ways. He’s equipped with all kinds of tricky gadgets although that bow and arrow function as the true trademark. I’ve also got to praise Arrow’s ruthlessness when it comes to the villainess type. This man has no mercy and he believes in severe punishment. Respect to you, Mr. Arrow!
Hellboy might be the greatest superhero not related to Marvel or DC. Mike Mignola’s creation is loaded with sharp humor but he’s all business when it comes time to take down demonic beasts from hell. Hellboy is awesome, flat out, and the fact that he’s red doesn’t hurt his cause!
Charles Xavier is kind of like the Godfather of superheroes. If not for this gentleman would we even have characters like Jean Grey, Cyclops, Wolverine, etc., etc.? Probably not. This man earns huge points on his accomplishments alone, but when he really opens his mind, he’s fully capable of tearing the bad guys apart. No one wants to lose a fight to a guy in a wheelchair.
The Thing is a brute. But you know what? He’s also kind of a nice guy. He tends to bicker with his fiery ally, but it’s typically in good fun. If it wasn’t, you can guarantee that Johnny Storm would find himself one with the pavement. It’s the Thing’s charisma and gentle heart that ultimately land him on this list. He’s just a good guy, and he’s always got the backs of his fellow Fantastic Four members.
A major player of classic mythology, Thor has now become synonymous with a long haired blonde gent capable of taking a building down with a single swing of the hammer. Thor can come off as a little arrogant from time to time, but you would too, if you were a god… right? The fact that the man earns respect from measly humans as well as nobles from other worlds is a reminder that he’s one to follow.
One of the founding members of the X-Men, Jean Grey is arguably the most powerful telepath on the planet. She also seems to struggle with her identity a bit. Is She Jean Grey? Is she the Phoenix? Is she dead, or alive? Who knows… who cares, her influence on the X-Men is still unwavering. Plus, she’s uber hot!
Those who only watch Iron Man films and avoid reading the comments may not realize it, but Tony Stark is something of a ticking time bomb. All the money in the world doesn’t change his well disguised death wish. He’s always pushing the borders of his suit, and there’s a very human reason for that. In some ways, Iron Man is the most complex character on the Marvel roster. Regardless of any mental issues the man has, we love him. And his armor.
Do we really need to dive into this one? Daredevil is badder than bad. The dude literally destroys villains… and he’s blind. HE’S BLIND!! ‘Nuff said.
When Bruce Banner rages, the world feels that rage. Sometimes the good guys feel it too, as Hulk kind of… loses himself from time to time. All the same, Bruce is a great guy with a brilliant mind, and the Hulk is a wrecking ball that no villain would voluntarily tangle with. I’m always up to see the big green man in purple pants tear a few buildings down.
Captain America is like Marvel’s father figure. He’s an amazing guy, pure in intentions, always respectful and capable of dismantling just about everyone. This is the first true Avenger and his counterparts treat him as such. There’s no shortage of respect for the man who always acts as an upstanding citizen. He’s quite literally the prototypical All American Good Guy. Cap rocks!
Somehow Wonder Woman can whip a villain with ease with that Lasso of Truth, all the while maintaining her purity and connection to the peaceful side of life. That sentence feels like a whole bunch of oxymoron’s battling each other in just a few words. But that’s what Wonder Woman does. And she represents female empowerment like none other in the comic world. Sexy, dangerous and influential, Wonder Woman was an obvious pick for this list. Who doesn’t love the Amazonian?
There’s a reason Wolverine is such a beloved character; he’s as human as you and I. Of course he does indeed have some nifty super powers, but he’s a haunted human being. Like so many of us, he battles his own demons on a regular basis. He’s lost a lot of what he once loved about life. That too, eats at him. In short, Wolverine is a sad story… a haunted soul in unending pain, and that’s something that a lot of us can truly relate to. 40 years ago no one would believe you if you told them a mutant with nasty claws that burst from his flesh would prove to be an insanely relatable and human character, but that’s exactly who and what Logan is.
Gotham’s wealthiest detective moonlights in a stunning suit designed to prevent any bodily damage. How’s that sound? Sounds accurate! Batman and Wolverine share a lot of similarities. Both have lost individuals that they deeply love. Both are constantly troubled by their own pasts. And both have a major desire to rid the world of the scum that wanders freely, looking for the vulnerable, hoping to snatch some cash, or murder for no reason. Every bit as haunted as Wolvie, Bruce Wayne is a sympathetic character whose only fault is his obsession with cleaning up the streets of Gotham.
Kal-el isn’t human. But he sure does behave as though he is. Well, at least when he’s disguised as Clark Kent. When the spectacles are removed and the suit is peeled away, Kent becomes Superman, the archetypical superhero. The superhero that other superheroes wish they could be. But Superman’s near-limitless abilities have never once gone to Superman’s head. He was raised (by Jonathan and Martha Kent) to be a respectful, responsible and decent man. The Kent’s did a brilliant job. The last thing Superman wants to do is see an unsuspecting pedestrian hurt (unless you base your opinion of the man on Zach Snyder’s miserable flick, Man of Steel, in which case you see Superman as a superhero who doesn’t give a rat’s tail about the well-being of anyone other than himself; there’s a building crumbling and it’s going to crush a lot of civilians! Eh, who cares, I’m in the middle of a fight Zod!), and he always goes far out of his way to protect humanity. Outside of Snyder’s crappy movie, Superman has always been selfless, and he’s always commanded a respect that few, if any, other superheroes will ever know.