The Dark Knight Rises - Bane Comic vs Movie Info

You call that a Bane? THIS is a Bane!

There's a lot of misconceptions surrounding the upcoming The Dark Knight Rises villain. Some think he's an idiotic roid head, while others think he's some absurdly muscular creature that could grapple with the Hulk. I'm here to set the record straight on all things Bane. Consider this your go-to guide before walking into the third (and final) Batman movie by Christopher Nolan on July 20.

Comic Origin vs Movie Origin

I'm going to have THAT haircut?

Bane and Bruce Wayne were born into this world under completely different circumstances. Little baby Bruce was brought into an environment of luxury and wealth. Meanwhile, south of the United States, Bane was born into the dark and violent setting of an island prison. But, why was Bane born into a prison? What could possibly be the reason to force an innocent child into such a life? Well, Bane's father was a revolutionary and was able to elude Santa Prisca's authorities. They weren't too fond of that, so the flawed government decided that his son would be sentenced for his father's crimes. The Batman villain had a life sentence before even learning to walk.

It was adapt or die for Bane. Surrounded by death and brutality, it wasn't long before that cruel world came crashing down on him. While wee Wayne was enjoying a play, Bane was hiding a knife in a teddy bear he named 'Osoito.' A man by the name of Trogg saved the young Bane from an attacker, but in the process Bane was hit off a ledge and knocked out. While unconscious, he had a vision of his future-self and the grown up version delivered a powerful message. He said the world was his to conquer, but only one thing stands in his way: fear. Abolish that emotion and he will be second to none. Bane woke abruptly and took the message to heart. He equipped his knife and paid a visit to the man who tried to attack him. He slaughtered the man and as a result was thrown into the hole, an isolation well that would flood every night and was infested with rats. This experience made him tough as nails, and when he was finally released about ten years later, the inmates viewed him as a legend.

Bane then carried on the path his future-self spoke of. Not a moment of any day was wasted for Bane. He read every book he could to sharpen his mind. He learned multiple languages and soaked in every bit of information that he could. His mind wasn't the only part of his body getting a workout either. Bane did a ridiculous workout routine daily which consisted of a thousand push ups, a thousand sit ups, and a thousand pull ups.

Inmates often spoke of Gotham City, and since he had never seen anything beyond the island first-hand, the city fascinated him. What especially interested him was hearing about the man who rules the city: Batman. Bane was determined to destroy this man, and in turn, rule the city. In the meantime, he regularly killed any challengers, but one day authorities had to take him down when the body count reached over thirty. It turns out they were experimenting on the inmates with a drug called venom. Bane was the first subject in the prison to survive the injection of strength enhancing fluids to the brain, but he knew there was only one way off the island... and that was death. The man was able to will his vitals down to the point where machines declared him dead and they tossed his body out into the sea. Bane killed a shark or two (take that, Jaws) and then was able to break his friends out of the prison (Trogg, Zombie, Bird). From here, he heads to Gotham and aims to "break that bat."

Not much has been revealed yet about the villain's origin in the movie so far, but we have heard a few tidbits of information. Recently a TV spot was released and it appears Alfred knows a bit about Bane. During the 30 second spot, Alfred remarks that Bane was "born and raised in Hell on Earth." While it might not be an island prison, it definitely sounds like Tom Hardy's take on the character has faced a life of misfortune that has crafted him into smart and tough Bat-baddie and certainly pays respect to the comic counter-part's origin.

Comic Venom vs Movie Venom

Hurts so good

In the primary DC universe, Bane was used as a test subject for the drug venom. When the fluid pumps into his brain, it essentially works as a superhuman steroid. His muscle mass increases, thus making him stronger (he can lift a maximum of 2-3 tons), slightly more durable due to the muscles growing in size, and he claimed it would also kill his pain. Despite what many think, using venom doesn't turn Bane into a rampaging mad man. He's lost his cool while using venom a few times, but those were totally different circumstances (his first case of withdrawal from the drug turned him into an emotional wreck, and another time it brought him back from death's door and he was pissed over how he was being treated). Long story short, it just makes him stronger than any human, but not nearly strong enough where he's going to be throwing down with some of the more popular powerhouses.

Director Christopher Nolan's movieverse is dark and grounded in realism. Having a superhuman strong guy throwing down with Bruce feels just a bit out of place, doesn't it? So, it looks like movie Bane is on a drug (they haven't said whether it's being called venom) that does take one attribute from the comic counter-part: it numbs his pain. Nolan's Bane suffered a critical injury at a younger age, and apparently it was so severe that he requires a constant dose of the anesthetic so he can cope with the physical trauma. So as far as I know so far, the drug does nothing to boost his strength.

Story Similarities

Bane prays Batman that didn't eat Taco Bell recently

As shown with the trailers and the viral marketing map of Gotham, Bane has rather destructive plans for Gotham City. He claims to be "Gotham's reckoning" and has an elaborate plan set-up across the city. From apparently creating a hostage situation at their equivalent of Wall Street to blowing up bridges and other locations, Bane's goal of using chaos to rule the city is quite similar to "Knightfall." In that '90s event, Bane released a flood of villains to wear down Batman physically and mentally. When Wayne couldn't take anymore, Bane broke his back and tossed the hero into the street for all to see what he had accomplished. We've already seen a break-out in Arkham Asylum (Batman Begins), but we do know Bane releases the inmates from some kind of incarceration facility. Whether or not it's Arkham Asylum has yet to be revealed.

There's a lot of rumors circulating around actress Marion Cotillard's character. She's credited on IMDB as playing Miranda Tate, but it seems more and more likely that the character is really Talia al Ghul. Liam Neeson is confirmed as making a return as her father, Ra's al Ghul, but we don't know how significant his role is. It might just be a flashback. However, if that's the case, this appears heavily inspired by the short series Bane of the Demon. Bane teamed up with the legendary Batman villain and had a rather awkward relationship with his daughter. It's possible this flashback will connect Bane to the villain from Batman Begins and he'll strike Gotham with Miranda Tate's character at his side.

At the moment there's limited information on Tom Hardy's Bane, but from what we do know, it's clear he's going to make the comic counter-part proud. Regardless of your feelings surrounding the costume changes, he looks like he'll have the might to put a beating on Batman (seeing him drop that cowl gives me goosebumps) and the raw intellect to bring Gotham to its dirty knees. Even if you don't like the costume, we can at least agree it beats the hell out of his appearance inBatman & Robin.

Bane SMASH!
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The Amazing Spider-Man - New Lizard images

I think this picture might give me nightmares. I never knew Lizard was such a creeper. Anyway, we've known for awhile now that the character design is mostly unchanged except for the face. I've heard this was to give the villain more "human emotion," but that seems rather pointless to me since he'll be a regular human (played by Rhys Ifans) for a good chunk of time. Call me crazy, but I've heard human faces are pretty good with being human, and Lizard's comic design is pretty good at being a friggin' scary villain. The fact that his teeth aren't sharp and in dire need of a cleaning don't help either.

Still, this is a relatively minor complaint and I've gotta admit that the more I see of The Amazing Spider-Man, the more it's impressing me. I was very skeptical at first, but this could definitely turn out to be a very solid popcorn movie, and hopefully, the start of an excellent franchise. Sony also released two more images. One of Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone) looking into a room where Lizard apparently had a temper tantrum, and one of Dr. Curt Connors... you know, when he's not the Lizard and can do that whole "emotional range" thing.

from: my blog

pictures source: Latino Review

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The Dark Knight Rises - Bane's Must Read Stories

The Dark Knight Rises is almost here and I feel obligated as a Bane fan to help prepare others for his appearance in director Christopher Nolan's final Batman film. There's a lot of misconceptions surrounding the character (stupid, roid head, etc), so I'm here to set all of the facts straight and point you in the right direction before The Dark Knight Rises comes out in July 20.

Today I have a look at Bane's must read stories. I'll tell you what they're about and how you can get your hands on a copy to read. These are barely scratching the surface of Bane's history in the DC Universe, too. In my opinion these are his critical stories, but if you're interested in reading more with Bane, leave a comment and I'll gladly list all of his other appearances that are worth reading (and there are plenty).

Tomorrow (5/24) I'll have another feature detailing all of the misconceptions about the villain and all of the basic information you'll need to know. You'll walk into The Dark Knight Rises feeling like a comic guru.

Batman versus Bane (trade paperback)

This new release collects Batman: Vengeance of Bane and the four issue run Bane of the Demon. If you want to learn about the character, this is an absolute must buy. Batman: Vengeance of Bane is Bane's first appearance and the entire issue is dedicated to his origin story. Written by Chuck Dixon, we get to see the villain's dark beginning as he's born in an island prison in the fictional South American nation of Santa Prisca. You'll learn about the man's motives, how he started taking the drug venom, and there's plenty of action. Bane of the Demon follows Bane's history with the villain Ra's al Ghul (played by Liam Neeson in the films) and his rocky relationship with Ra's daughter, Talia al Ghul (allegedly also in the upcoming film). For the more daring fans that'll want to read all of these events in order, it's important to note that this story takes place afterBatman: Vengeance of Bane II - Redemption.

How do you get a copy?

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Batman-Versus-Bane-Comics-Paperback/dp/1401233775

Midtown Comics: http://www.midtowncomics.com/store/dp.asp?PRID=1168292

Mycomicshop: http://www.mycomicshop.com/search?TID=22640925

Knightfall (Part One and Two)

"Knightfall" is the massive story that helped but Bane on the map and define the character for the general audience. Free from his life in prison, Bane has but one goal set in his sights: to break Batman. Kicking-off the story by creating a massive breakout at Arkham Asylum, the masked villain sits back and watches as the onslaught of villains create chaos across the city, forcing The Dark Knight to his physical and mental limits. The story definitely feels a little dated at times, but it's fun and mandatory reading if you want to know more about the character before The Dark Knight Rises.

How do you get a copy?

Amazon:

(Pt 1)http://www.amazon.com/Batman-Knightfall-Part-One-Broken/dp/1563891425

(Pt 2)http://www.amazon.com/Batman-Knightfall-Part-Rules-Night/dp/B005KFIKGQ/ref=pd_sim_b_7

Midtown Comics:

(Pt 1) http://ww.www.midtowncomics.com/store/dp.asp?PRID=Batman+Knightfall+Part+1+_8233

(Pt 2) http://webmail.www.midtowncomics.com/store/dp.asp?PRID=Batman+Knightfall+Part+2+_8234

Mycomicshop: http://www.mycomicshop.com/search?TID=309091

Batman: Vengeance of Bane II - The Redemption (issue)

Bane is back in prison after the events of "Knightfall" and he has a whole new agenda. Once again he's hunting for venom, but this time around he's not seeking to use it, he wants to destroy the steroid. This issue proves that Bane can become one of Batman's ultimate threats even without the aid of the muscle boosting drug. Witness Bane's recovery from chubby and defeated villain to a physical and intellectual beast that many will come to fear.

How do you get a copy?

Amazon:http://www.amazon.com/Batman-Vengeance-Bane-II-Special/dp/B0017KEJOU

Midtown Comics: http://smtp.www.midtowncomics.com/store/dp.asp?PRID=Batman+Vengeance+of+Bane+_107134

Mycomicshop: http://www.mycomicshop.com/search?TID=202501

Detective Comics #701 (issue)

Now working with Ra's al Ghul (read Bane of the Demon for details!), Bane heads to Gotham City and encounters Batman. Prepare for many punches and kicks to be had. If you're looking for an epic Batman and Bane fight, then this is your go-to issue. That really should be enough to make you want to read this one.

How do you get a copy?

Amazon:http://www.amazon.com/Batman-Detective-Comics-No-701/dp/B000ELCDO6

Midtown Comics: http://www.midtowncomics.com/store/dp.asp?PRID=Detective+Comics+%23701_196619

Mycomicshop: http://www.mycomicshop.com/search?tid=100871&pgi=701

Batman: Bane (issue)

Beaten down by Batman and drifting into the sea, Bane bumps into a ship and hops on board. Except this isn't your every day vessel... it has nuclear supplies. Bane commandeers the ship like a boss and plans to use the weapons on Gotham City. Naturally, Batman and Nightwing (the original Robin all grown up and awesome) won't stand for it and face off against Bane once again. Guess who wins? Bane, and he nukes Gotham City, too. Okay, maybe not, but it's by one of the men who created the character (Chuck Dixon) and definitely worth owning.

How do you get a copy?

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Batman-Bane-Chuck-Dixon/dp/B000TRW5SE

Midtown Comcis: n/a

Mycomicshop: http://www.mycomicshop.com/search?TID=99081

Azrael #36-40 (issues)

Jean-Paul Valley beat Bane into a coma awhile ago, so you can bet Bane has been waiting for a chance to pummel JPV's face with his over-sized fists. Some years later and we finally get the rematch we've been waiting for. But, it's not just one match, it's a handful and they're all well worth the wait. Bane doesn't want Azrael dead, he wants him to suffer. And to do so, he tries to make the hero addicted to venom. Brutal battles ensue.

How do you get a copy?

Amazon: (then search manually for other issues)http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=azrael+36&rh=n%3A283155%2Ck%3Aazrael+36&ajr=2

Midtown Comics: http://www.midtowncomics.com/store/search.asp?q=Azrael++%28comics%29&pg=2&reld=1/1/1900&reld2=1/1/1900&furl=pl=16@@q=Azrael++%28comics%29

Mycomicshop: http://www.mycomicshop.com/search?TID=98321

Batman: No Man's Land Volume 4 (trade paperback)

A powerful earthquake strikes Gotham City and the government declares the location uninhabitable. Citizens are forced to leave while the villains rise and begin to battle one another for control over turf. For video game fans, it's pretty much Arkham City but spread across the entire territory. Superman villain Lex Luthor wants to conquer and re-build the large city and he sends in Bane to do some dirty work. This trade paperback is packed with tons of familiar faces and is sporting a solid Bane and Batman fight illustrated by the excellent Mike Deodato Jr. Oh, and did I mention Bane also lugs around a minigun? Few things are scarier than seeing this huge character casually walking around with the massive firearm.

How do I get a copy?

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Batman-No-Mans-Land-Vol/dp/1563896982

Midtown Comics: http://www.midtowncomics.com/store/dp.asp?PRID=Batman+No+Mans+Land+Vol+4_8217

Mycomicshop: http://www.mycomicshop.com/search?q=Eagle%20%20Vol.%204%20%2041&qloc=N&TID=515401

Batman: Gotham Knights #33-36 & #46-49 (issues)

Bane has wanted to demolish Batman for quite a long time now, but will that all change when Bane finds out they could actually be brothers? Bane teams up with The Dark Knight to find the truth behind who his father really is. Spoiler alert: their dad is really Superman.

How do I get a copy?

Amazon: (then manually search for other issues) http://www.amazon.com/Batman-Gotham-Knights-BEATTY-DARWYN/dp/B001DL53U2

Midtown Comics: http://www.midtowncomics.com/store/search.asp?q=Batman+Gotham+Knights++%28comics%29&pg=2&reld=1/1/1900&reld2=1/1/1900&furl=pl=16@@q=Batman+Gotham+Knights++%28comics%29Mycomicshop:http://www.mycomicshop.com/search?TID=246981

source: my blog

25 Comments

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Color Classics #1 Review

Holy sweet nostalgia, Batman! This is the best $3.99 you're ever going to spend. If you're a Turtles fan, there's literally no reason not to buy this. Even if you own an original copy of the 1984 Mirage issue that started it all, this will give you the chance to keep that copy nice and clean and use this fresh one for reading. And, if you've never had the chance to read the very first Turtles adventure (understandable seeing as the back issues are expensive and graphic novels are costly as well), then this is going to be quite a delight.

This is what started it all. This issue tells the origin story of the heroes in a half shell, Splinter and their most popular nemesis, Shredder. Some might be surprised that this franchise wasn't for the kiddies at first. Right in the opening sequence we see that the Turtles get full use of their deadly weapons, showing no mercy on thugs in the Big Apple. From the battle on the first pages to the rooftop showdown with the Shredder, we're treated to some bloody and brutal encounters. In spite of how dark the world is, you can't help but have a smile on you're face as you read through this classic first issue.

I really have no serious complaints surrounding this issue. It's possible that the art might be a bit too dated and odd for some, though. The proportions tend to fluctuate at times, and while most of the action is illustrated incredibly well, there are a few panels that don't do the motion and impact full justice... at one point it actually looks like Michelangelo attacks Shredder with a hug (a devastating attack indeed). Overall, that's a very minor complaint, especially seeing as most of the art is fantastic. The splash pages would make for awesome posters and the details on the war-torn Turtles definitely catch your eye.

If you even remotely consider yourself a Turtles fan, I highly recommend picking this up. The second issue will hit shelves 6/6.

5/5

source: my blog

9 Comments

Big Events: More "Night of the Owls," Less "AvX"

A big event should be something that the publisher is proud of and the fans should crave. These are the pay-per-view events of the respective comic universes. The stories should be inspiring and exceptional, the art detailed and fantastic, and most important of all, it should be something that loyal fans of the company will love and the event will further cement their support for the publisher. Unfortunately, it hasn't been that way for awhile. I personally haven't enjoyed any of Marvel's big events since "Civil War," and it seems as though a fair chunk of fans agree. In fact, many go a step further and loathed "Civil War." To make matters worse, the most recent event ("Avengers vs X-Men") is being bashed by a big majority of comic fans I chat with, and I have to say I agree with their fading interest in the story. However, over at DC, "Night of Owls" has been a huge success, generating lots of love and finding a fun way to mesh into other titles. They're both big events, but what is it that makes "Avengers vs X-Men" so terribly mediocre and "Night of the Owls"such a hit?

The Scale

I know this might be hard to swallow for Marvel, but not every big event needs to have massive scale or such drastic odds. The Phoenix is coming (for the millionth time) and the world might be destroyed if Hope can't harness the power! Do you really think the Earth will be destroyed this time around? And, if Marvel's true objective is as simple as giving the fans some hero versus hero encounters, then why not just give us "Contest of Champions III?" After all, that's the friggin' premise of the book and it does so without trying to come off as some grand event. Sure, this event is appealing for longtime fans of Phoenix or people who have grown fond of Hope, but aside from that, we're four issues in and quite literally nothing has happened to make us give a damn. To call that unfortunate would be a pretty big understatement. On top of that, the primary titles alone don't suffice if you want a better grasp on the story. The tie-ins are mandatory for extra details. Otherwise, Cap doesn't seem like all that fantastic of a tactician if you're limited to his actions in AvX #1. "Hey Wolverine, Phoenix is bad, right? Alright, let's go steal that girl."

"Night of the Owls" has a very simple premise that allows it to seep into other books without feeling forced. The Court of the Owls want to re-take Gotham, so they're sending out a flood of assassins to take out a host of targets. Which will live? Which will die? How will Batman stop them? This isn't shoving all of the characters into one big shindig while they're still off doing other matters in other titles. Instead, it has managed to fit organically into every title it impacts (in this case: everyone in Gotham). These tie-ins have a clear objective: prevent the Talon from killing his/her target. While none have truly been great, so far each has been quite fun and it's enjoyable seeing how the assorted heroes would handle facing the regenerating assassins. More importantly, they're not mandatory if you want to understand the majority of the main story.

The Creative Team

No, I'm not going to jump on the Bendis hate train. While I'm not a fan of most of his recent work, there's no denying his time with Daredevil, the earlier work with New Avengers and Ultimate Spider-Man was some quality material. So, credit where it's due. Then we have some other big names in Marvel (Aaron, Brubaker, JRJR), but despite these being the "heavy hitters" of the company, this event (just like the handful before it), don't stand out as anything exceptional. Like I said before, we're already 4 issues into AvX and not much has happened to push the story forward. And, seeing as I'm on a budget, the $3.99 price tag per issue means it's growing costly to stick around only to be continually letdown. John Romita Jr's art is something that has grown on me a lot over the years. I wasn't a huge fan at first, but I've come to really love and appreciate his incredibly unique style in many titles. However, there's a significant lack of detail here, especially when a handful of characters share a panel. This is a big-freaking-event and it should look great and it should keep our interest. It shouldn't appear sloppy and move at a snail's pace.

It's widely agreed upon that Snyder and Capullo have been dominating with Batman. Introducing the Owls was a tricky move and risked making WTF-worthy retcons to Gotham's history, however, they completely pulled it off. Their existence is believable and is continually fleshed out as we carry on in the event. To make matters even more impressive, almost every issue we get an interesting set of facts about the history of Wayne's family or the city itself.

What To Do?

In my eyes, Marvel is suffering from a quantity versus quality issue. They're pumping out a lot of events, but none will really go down as a must-read story, and as a long-time Marvel fan, that's a huge disappointment. There's no quota for big events, so perhaps it would just be best if Marvel took a step back and began reducing the volume of these stories and treated each one as their next masterpiece. Yes, sales are incredible for them (how could the majority not want to pick up a book with Wolverine and Cap fighting on the cover?), but at the same rate, pulling in more cash doesn't mean all of that green should blind them from a pretty loud outcry from their loyal fans. A big event doesn't need to feel big, and "Night of the Owls" is proof of this. Now, this isn't to say DC isn't guilty of the same mistake. I guess we'll just have to wait and see when "Trinity War" comes around.

What do you think? Do you agree that Marvel needs to cool down with the big events and focus on fewer but better stories? Or, are you loving AvX and think I'm a fool for believing otherwise? And, do you agree or disagree that "Night of the Owls" should be a standard for more events?

source: my blog

36 Comments

Marvel/DC/IDW Comic Reviews Catch Up (early May)

I haven't posted reviews in awhile, so I figured I'll just throw a bunch of quick reviews your way. Enjoy!

Batman 9

"Like a boss" is the best way to describe how Scott Snyder has been handling Batman's primary on-going in The New 52 so far. Snyder breathes so much life into the character and has him deliver lines that make him live up to his infamous title of "The Goddamn Batman." You have no soul if the final line doesn't get you pumped. As for the story, the Talons have finally invaded Wayne's mansion and he and Alfred are doing everything they can to crush the invasion of regenerating assassins. Greg Capullo has been illustrating the hell out of this book since issue 1 and he makes it a dark beauty as an armored Bruce Wayne slugs it out with the wave of armed killers. Gritty and detailed, he's a superb choice for what I believe is one of DC's must-read titles.

4.5/5

Batman & Robin 9

Much to my surprise, I've grown to consider Batman & Robin one of my favorite titles from The New 52. Peter Tomasi didn't win me over with the first issue (more of Wayne dealing with dead parents and honestly, Damian wasn't interesting), but things quickly escalated and now I'm a loyal fan. The events of Nobody have come and gone (if you haven't read that, I highly recommend it) and now Damian is thrown into the chaos of The Night of the Owls all on his own. He needs to save a local Major General from a Talon, and what follows is pure action that is awkwardly interrupted by a back-story for the Talon and his target. It's a little odd seeing Damian command full grown adults in the armed forces, but the little one is definitely not a character to sell short. We've been so focused on the parent/son dynamic and it's a nice change of pace to see how well he can thrive on his own. I never cared much for the character before this title, but Tomasi is making me a fan. Watching Robin and the soldiers struggle to survive is a blast, and the finale is jaw-droppingly awesome. Just like some of the other Night of the Owls tie-ins, it's fun and filled with action, but not something you need to experience if you're not already following the title or the event.

3.5/5

Scarlet Spider 5

Kaine's brutal adventure in Houston has been quite a ride so far, but unfortunately this issue is the first low point for the series. It's not terrible by any means, but nothing about it truly goes beyond average and it's a standalone story that doesn't really add all that much to the title. An extremist group plants a nuke in the Texan city and a heavy focus is put on Kaine being far from your traditional hero. He might be a clone of Peter Parker, but at the core he's becoming an anti-hero, and we begin to see some change in the character as he chooses to do the difficult but right thing. Although, Chris Yost does manage to generate some laughs with some decent quips from Kaine. Artist Ryan Stegman has really brought the title to life with vibrant and violent artwork, so it's a shame his last issue will be #6 and the change in art for this issue is immediately noticeable. Not to bash Neil Edwards; I think he actually did a fantastic job and I'd love to see more of his work. But, Stegaman's work was a great fit for the title, so it'll likely take a bit of time to get used to Khoi Pham when he takes over illustrating the book. Despite this not being a good jumping on point or living up to the other issues, I still remain very optimistic about this title and continue to look forward to the next issue every month. I have faith in Yost and hopefully Kaine will become a bigger name in the 616 Marvel Universe.

3/5

Batwing 9

The oh-so-epic Night of the Owls event hits Batwing during his stint in Gotham, and the result is a short but rather bloody fight as David tries to defend Lucius Fox from one of the deadly Talons. We get a nice look at a few new qualities of Batwing's armor/weapons and where he plans to go with it (looks like Somali pirates are in his future). After all, getting whupped by a dude with a machete while sporting an advanced piece of armor and technology has got to be a little embarrassing, so it's good to see he's learning from that lesson. That said, this issue feels like a very quick read, and while it's definitely fun, it's not up to par with writer Judd Winick's previous issues. Although, the ending should certainly put a smirk on your face. Marcus To jumps on-board as the new artist, and while Ben Oliver is missed, To does a solid job. Fun and brutal, but not a must read unless you're already really enjoying the title or religiously following the event.

3.5/5

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 9

Splinter is being held captive and the Turtles, April and Casey go on the offensive in an attempt to save their furry mentor. I've made it more than clear in the past I'm loving IDW's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and thankfully, this issue is no exception. It delivers a heavy dose of nostalgia while still feeling fresh and modern. This issue puts a heavy focus on the action as the Turtles and Casey attack the facility, smacking and stabbing everything in their path. Unfortunately, there's nothing new with Krang here. He's still just puffing his chest at Baxter Stockman and making threats if he doesn't follow through with his part of the deal. The final reveal is sure to make any fan of the franchise anxious for the next issue as well. Dan Duncan's art is growing on me. At first I found it to be a little rough, but now I'm really appreciating how well it fits the vibe of the tale and you can feel the momentum and impacts when the fists and weapons begin to fly. This series is without question one of my favorite books currently on the shelves, so if you consider yourself a fan of the Turtles, you need to start picking this one up.

4/5

Age of Apocalypse 3

With just 3 issues in I'm more than comfortable with saying that Age of Apocalypse is one of Marvel's best titles. Regardless of your feelings surrounding the massive event from the '90s, this is a whole new take on the dark and blood stained alternate Earth. Roberto De La Torre's art is a match made in heaven (or in this case, hell) for this book. All hope is seemingly lost and the plot is certainly complimenting that bleak outlook quite well. Dark Beast and the goofy looking Sugarman are bringing the heavy hitter villains back to life (the feud between Havok and Cyclops is absolutely worth revisiting) and the stakes are higher than ever for the X-Terminated. Prophet, who is quickly becoming a contender for the title of most badass character in Marvel, is fully aware of looming danger and the team embarks on an apparent suicide mission. Brutality ensues and I can't wait for the next issue. Great writing which manages to address a wide cast of characters and art that compliments the depressing world very well. So now I can't help but wonder... why isn't this on your pull list?

4.5/5

Venom 17

Rick Remender is killing it on Venom, and I say this as a huge fanboy of the Eddie Brock-era of Venom. His time has come and gone as the first symbiote and Flash brings so much more depth to the symbiotic relationship. We're getting a better look at the emotional mess that is his life with more internal dialogue and the violence is without question still delivering. Venom bumps into the brand new Savage Six, and Eddie continues his narrow-minded quest to slay all of the symbiotes. Kev Walker is the right dude for the job, delivering art that is both dark and detailed. Odds are most symbiote fans will be very, very pleased with the ending, too. Venom carries on to be on of my favorite Marvel titles.

4/5

source: my blog

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Why I believe Avengers will beat TDKR at the Box Office

I'm pretty confident that Marvel's The Avengers will make more at the box office than The Dark Knight Rises. Marvel Studios latest (and fan-f*cking-tastic) effort reaches to a much wider audience, and honestly, is easier to digest for the masses. It's not dark, it's not deep, and it's not complex. This isn't calling it stupid nor claiming it's a terribly basic film. It's simply fun from beginning to end and, based on other reviews/word of mouth, a vast majority seems to agree that it's an epic blockbuster worth checking out.

Why is this? The factors working in its favor cast out a wider net than The Dark Knight Rises does. Director Joss Whedon's team-up is easily accessible by anyone and everyone. Regardless of your publisher preference, we all want to see a group of super heroes we know team up on the big screen, and more importantly, see if it can be pulled off. While this is a follow-up to all of the previous efforts by Marvel Studios, you don't really need to see them to appreciate this film. It was more than clear during both my viewings that much of the crowd likely only saw Iron Man or possibly even none of the other efforts. While leaving the cinema I overheard plenty of conversations including remarks such as "what's the Destroyer" and "was Iron Man that funny in his own movies?" The Dark Knight Rises is being promoted as the conclusion of the trilogy, and while already existing fans of the franchise are going to rush to see it opening night, I question its ability to pull in the much younger and/or older crowd that hasn't watched Batman Begins and The Dark Knight. That, and the vast amount of now familiar faces to the general audience (thanks to Marvel Studios tactic by kicking off their films with the excellent Iron Man in 2008) should assure its power to pull more cash. It just flat-out has more star power when it comes to characters. And then there's the most obvious reason: 3D. That alone means it'll generate more cash per ticket.

This isn't by any means saying that Marvel's The Avengers will be a superior movie to The Dark Knight Rises (even though it's more than transparent they'll be drastically different). We'll just have to wait until July 20th for that conversation. I'm sure TDKR will earn a monumental amount of money as well, and regardless of which film makes more cash, we should just be happy we're alive in a year that has not one, but two amazing comic book movies (yes, I think it's safe to assume TDKR will be great). Do you agree that Marvel's The Avengers will earn more, or do you think Christopher Nolan's final Batman film will knock out Marvel's best movie yet?

source: my blog

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Moon Knight: Where Do We Go Now?

 
Moon Knight - Where Do We Go Now?

Moon Knight can't seem to catch a break.  Marvel's street level anti-hero has always had a decent fanbase, but Marc Spector apparently can't hold his ground with Marvel.  Over the past few years, The Fist of Khonshu has had no luck with keeping a strong ongoing. 

The fantastic 2006 series brought the hero back in an extremely dark and powerful way.  He was at the bottom and readers religiously followed the stories of Marc's increasingly difficult life.  This bleak period in his life spawned 30 issues (plus a special and annual) before coming to an end with the awesome stories "The Death of Marc Spector" and "Down South." 

Marc would return with his own title in 2009, Vengeance of Moon Knight .  This had a promising start, sporting a heavily armored Marc with a renewed sense of justice.  He came back to New York in the Dark Reign infested world and was looking to make a difference.  But, a man can only do so much with just 10 issues.

For the latest take on the character, we have Moon Knight  by the immensely popular writer Brian Michael Bendis and artist Alex Maleev (cue raving about their take on Daredevil ).  This run brought some huge changes to Marc.  He left his entire supporting cast behind in New York and traveled to Hollywood where he wanted to become a producer.  His mental well-being and case of multiple personality disorder went off the deep-end.  He was no longer restricted to being just Marc, Jake, Steven, and Moon Knight- he was now hallucinating and trying to be other Avengers.  But, with drastic change comes mixed results.  Lasting only 12 issues, this series received some pretty solid reviews.  However, a good chunk of Moon Knight fans (based on my conversations across multiple forums) weren't happy with such a massive change to the character.

You try to change the character too much and a good deal of the long-time fans protest... but if you try to do more of the same, it never seems to work.  So where do we go now with Moon Knight?  Is he simply a character that'll never stick, or is there a formula that can boost him to A-list status?  As a Moon Knight fanboy, I feel obligated to weigh in and share what I'd love to see for the character next time around.

-The Creative Team-
Moon Knight needs to strike a great blend of dark action and a strong connection to his supporting characters.  We know he can be more violent than the traditional hero, but we need a cast that'll evoke our emotions and make us give a damn about what's going on in his life.  Personally, I think Mike Benson (second half of the '06 run, Deadpool: Suicide Kings ), Rick Remender (Venom, Uncanny X-Force ), Christopher Yost (Scarlet SpiderX-Force ) or Ed Brubaker (Captain America ,Daredevil ) would all be excellent picks and could create exceptional Moon Knight stories.  As for the art, Mike Deodato Jr. or David Finch are without question the top picks.  Ryan Stegman has been absolutely delivering with Scarlet Spider,  so he'd also be a great fit. 




-The Character-
We've seen Marc at his worst (Civil War era) and we've seen him at his craziest (recent run), so how about we give the man's emotional scars a break and focus on returning him to a place inspired by his classic era (a la Dan Slott & Amazing Spider-Man).  He's once again loyal to Khonshu and a full moon increases his strength. But unlike recent events, this time around the God (who is real) doesn't call for Marc to create a body count... but instead demands for Marc to spread fear and respect for his deity.  This takes away the conflict he has with his agenda because that's something we've seen too many times before.  That story feels like it's on loop at this point and it would be nice to see a clear minded and focused Moon Knight doing what he does best: knocking out villains.


When it comes to his multiple personality disorder, I say throw the whole thing out the window.  He was never truly crazy (before the current run, of course); he created Jake and Steven for tactical reasons.  Jake was around to obtain information at a lower level, and Steven was there to get high level information and pose as a front for how he obtained his wealth (which was done through his years as a mercenary).  The different personalities would sometimes suggest different things, bur he was always in full control (best displayed in West Coast Avengers).  While I applaud Bendis' effort to bring new dynamics to the character, giving no solid explanation for the big change wasn't overlooked by many and I feel as though it was banking on most believing the stereotype that Marc is indeed bonkers.  After boosting the craziness in Hollywood, I say have him return to New York with a clear mind and finally realizes he doesn't need the personalities.  In the end, he's simply a hero, and his real personality (Marc Spector) proved that a long time ago Egypt by doing everything he could to stop Bushman.  Casting aside these personal issues we've seen time and time again will allow the writer to provide a heavier focus on the supporting cast (Marlene, Frenchie, etc) and greater plots surrounding villains posing the real threat instead of his own emotions.


-The Villains-

His rogues gallery is in dire need of the New 52 treatment.  Many haven't been seen in awhile and others just aren't exciting.  Bushman is his main foe, but at the end of the day he brings nothing special to the table.  He gave Marc a deliciously brutal fight in Vengeance, but aside from that, the guy was never that big of an obstacle.  When we last saw the villain he was losing his mind, so it might be interesting to see Bushman be the man to fill the title's crazy quota.  Seeing the likes of Morpheus and Deadzone return would be most welcome, and, dare I say it, find a way to give him an equivalent of the Sinister Six.  If these villains with an agenda against Moony aren't stacking up individually, have this crazy Bushman unite them. Ultimately, Mr. Spector simply needs bigger adversaries with bigger agendas.  In my opinion this will be one of many critical elements for his success.

-Increase His Role-

Moon Knight has a rich history of interacting with a lot of characters, but as of late he hasn't really done anything of any importance in the 616 Universe.  This should change if you want more people interested in him and having him fill the role of "supporting character #7" on a team book likely isn't going to cut it.  Giving him more respect and time in the spotlight among the super hero community will hopefully lead to more readers being curious about the character.  As much as I loathe forced cameos, make an effort to have him a part of the world he's in.  New York is packed with characters and it shouldn't be uncommon for him to be bumping shoulders and appearing in other titles. 


Are these suggestions something you'd like to see in Moon Knight's next title or do you have something else in mind for the anti-hero?  Or, do you think it's finally time for Moon Knight to just call it quits and spend a few years in limbo?  Feel free to speak your mind in the comments section below!  
 
source: my blog
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Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Micro-Series #4 (Review)

Picking up directly after the events of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #8, the team splits up to find Splinter, but all Leonardo discovers is a mountain of Foot ninjas.
The Good:
This issue is nothing but pure action and Leo showcasing why he's one of the most talented ninjas among his brothers. There's quite literally only 2 pages of set up ("Let's split up and find Splinter!") before Leonardo comes face-to-face with a sea of blade wielding Foot ninjas. We get a look inside Leo's mind and it's nice to see he's every bit as determined and heroic as he acts on the exterior and you've got to respect his struggle to keep focused int he face of impossible odds. However, if you're not currently a big fan of Leo's, I sincerely doubt this is issue is going to sway your position. Oh, and then there's a little showdown with (a man I can only assume to be) The Shredder. That alone is worth the $3.99 price tag.
The Bad:
I've been more than vocal about my love and support for IDW's TMNT run so far, but this issue essentially boils down to nothing more than a fight sequence to serve as the first fight a Turtle has had with the Foot. This is hardly a criticism for many, but at the same rate, there's no development with the search for Splinter / overall plot, and, like previously stated, this is unlikely to create any new Leo fans. In his credit, though, the lead Turtle does fire a few decent quips during the battle. Ross Cambell's art is likely going to be hit or miss for many. It's cartoonish, not very detailed at times, and some of the proportions tend to feel odd. The combat feels stationary during some of the moments with the ninjas, but thankfully, you can really appreciate the motions and speed during his final encounter with Shredder. The strikes are appropriately brutal and easily the highlight of the comic.

The Verdict:

There's really no reason not to pick this one up if you're like me and over the moon about IDW's run so far. This latest Micro-Series issue doesn't bring any new developments to the table, but sometime it's alright to take a break from the plot and appreciate an issue packed with hand-to-hand combat from start to finish.

3/5

source: my blog

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The Battles Bible - MANDATORY READING BEFORE POSTING!

We all love the battles thread, but unfortunately it's populated with a number of terrible matches. Be it a complete lack of balance or too much to logically debate about, a good deal of the threads here aren't anything to write home about. So Viners, I plead to you, think these questions over before making a thread. I present to you: The Battles Bible.

Creating a thread

  • Is it honestly a fair match? Can you see either combatant winning or are you legitimately torn on who the clear winner is? If not, don't make it.
  • Does the match need a TON of rules to make it remotely fair? If so, don't make it.
  • Is the match between two fairly popular characters? It's likely going to be a dupe, so PLEASE search for it first (if the function on the site doesn't work, use google!). If so, don't make it. Because honestly, the last thing this place needs is ANOTHER Cap vs Batman or Hulk vs Superman.
  • The search function is found on the upper right hand part of the page. Obviously in this case you'll want to select "Battles" under the board drop down and then try searching for the match (ie Hulk vs Superman or Superman vs Hulk). If for some reason this option isn't working, open google or whichever search engine you commonly use. Then, type "comicvine" and after it, the match idea. For example "comicvine Superman vs Hulk" or "comicvine Hulk vs Superman."
  • Do people know about the character you're involving? If he/she/it is very obscure, provide extra details. We all love to learn about new characters, so share with us your knowledge, and if possible, scans.
  • Does your match have more than 14 characters going at it? Odds are this is far too complex and there are way too many variables (not to mention the difficulty in properly balancing such a match). Please try to avoid these (here's looking at you, vague X-Men vs JL threads).
  • Does your match have details? Are the characters current or classic versions? Do they have their standard weapons? Where are they fighting? How far apart do they begin? Are they visible? Are they in character?
  • Spice up your thread with some images. Provide a picture of the characters involved and location if possible.

Posting in a thread

  • Is an old thread a clear spite match and you're bumping it just to point that out? Don't post, just flag it and a mod will likely lock it.
  • Is a new thread a clear spite match and you're posting just to point out it's a mismatch? That's fine, but flag it, too.
  • Do you really want to spend your time on Comicvine just making a series of posts that are "name wins?" If you think a character wins, elaborate a bit. What allows them to win? Superior power? Superior skill? Have they fought in the comics? Recall any feats that help in comics? Help make threads fun again, drop a knowledge bomb and go cold turkey on the "name wins" posts.
  • Is someone being a total jerk in a thread? Don't engage them, flag the post and let a moderator handle it. I know it's tough to resist feeding the trolls, but do your best!
  • Throw away your personal bias. I love Gambit, but I'm not going to say "Gambit, duh!" in Gambit vs Hulk. There's no shame in a character you love losing a battle.
  • Don't disrespect other characters by only using low end feats. Perfect example: Deadpool getting knocked out by the large hot dog. Come on, we know it takes more than that to down him, so don't try to get away with only downplaying the character on the opposite side of your argument. Take into account all feats and make your own logical conclusion on their levels. The very same applies to high end feats as well. Don't spam "Spidey beat Firelord, therefore he beats anyone less than Firelord!" You'll get no respect with that silliness.
  • Don't be stubborn and egotistical. No matter how much we know, there's always someone out there that knows more about something else. These debates aren't about winning, they're about learning and sharing your knowledge. Don't foolishly stand by your original stance just because you don't want to "lose." That's nonsense. It far more respectable to admit you were wrong on something than to drag it out.
  • Matches are always assuming the characters face off 10 different times. Not in a row, just what would happen if the encounter took place 10 times. Who wins the majority of that is what's important and why.
  • Take note of the date a post was made. If you see something you disagree with and feel like replying, take a moment to look at the date. It could be years old and that person has changed their mind or is possibly even no longer active. Continue through the thread and join the current convos instead of jumping in the time machine and going back in time.
  • If you're going to bump a very old thread, bring something new to the table. It's rather silly to bump something like "Deadpool vs Wolverine" with a post that only says "Deadpool" if it has been idle for over a year. I assure you, that's not changing any minds.
  • Can you really say a character wins if you know nothing about the other one or your knowledge is just limited to some scans you've seen tossed around? Take advantage of the community's knowledge and ask questions before posting about who you think would win. Otherwise, you're just going to get called out on it and look foolish. You don't want that, right?

Have another important rule you'd like to share? Post it and I'll update the OP!

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