DC Comics has decided that following President Obama’s “evolution,” they should have a major character come out of the closet in a future edition.
Senior VP Sales Bob Wayne said DiDio’s view ‘had evolved’, comparing the shift to Barack Obama’s recent endorsement of same-sex marriage.
DiDio did not specify which character would ‘come out’ or in which issue it would be featured.
But Courtney Simmons, DC Entertainment’s senior vice president of publicity, told ABC News that it would be soon.
‘One of the major iconic DC characters will reveal that he is gay in a storyline in June,’ Simmons told the network.
Meanwhile, Marvel just sent out a “Save the Date” for Northstar’s same sex marriage to his boyfriend:
Today, fans worldwide learned on ABC’s “The View” that Jean-Paul Beaubier, aka Northstar, proposes to his boyfriend Kyle Jinadu in ASTONISHING X-MEN #50, on-sale May 23 in comic stores, on the Marvel Comics app and at the Marvel Digital Comics Shop. The creative team of New York Times best-sellers Marjorie Liu and Mike Perkins have put Northstar and Kyle’s relationship to the test—and now they’re about to take their biggest step yet. But will their path to wedded matrimony in New York City be smooth or are there hidden dangers around the corner?
I hate to get all grumpy old fanboy on you, but back in my day, the comics didn’t really focus on the sexuality of the superhero. They focused on his battle against the super-villain.
I know, Northstar has been out as gay for decades, but they didn’t really make it a big deal. It was always about the battle between good and evil.
Crazy, I know.
That being said, I wonder how much of the comic book industry is actually targeting kids today. Comics are not cheap anymore. And most of the collectors, like me, are probably adults:
“Despite notable efforts from many in the industry, comics and graphic novels continue to be repeatedly mislabeled as just another children’s book category,” said Warren Pawlowski, online publishing manager for Simba Information and an analyst within the company’s Trade Books Group. “With nearly a quarter of the comic reading audience beyond the age of retirement, there is a misconception that needs to be corrected.”
The full report is $1,200, money I don’t intend to spend to find out more regarding the demographics of the average comic book reader. But I’ll bet Marvel and DC have, which lead them to the decision to make the books more mature.
What do you think? Is this move, to have one of the main DC characters come out of the closet, a sign that DC understands its demographics or a sign that sales are getting weak and they felt controversy increases the number of books out the door? Or both.
And, who do you think is coming out of the closet? I would guess Wonder Woman, but they already have Batwoman out as a lesbian, so it’s more likely it’s a guy.
I’m betting it’s the Flash.
I’m telling you right out of the gate, this article contains spoilers for The Avengers. If you have not seen the movie (how’s life been under the rock this weekend?), you should probably bookmark this for reading later.
You’ve been duly warned.
* * *
The big news this weekend wasn’t that The Avengers owned the box office, smashing the previous opening record held by Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2. It was the appearance of Thanos, the Mad Titan, in the end credits.
Who is Thanos?
If you’re not a comic book fan, you probably have never heard of him, which makes his inclusion in the movies a nod of appreciation to the fans and a feeling that future movies from Marvel Studios will lead to even more stellar sequels to The Avengers.
That’s because Thanos is a more powerful villain than The Avengers have faced before.
Thanos is an Eternal of the planet Titan, born with the Deviant gene. This means he looks different than all the other Eternals. He’s a bit self-conscious about it.
Being an Eternal, he has some special powers:
Thanos possesses the superhuman physiology of all Eternals, granting him superhuman strength, endurance, reflexes, and agility. His skin in nearly invulnerable, particulary against heat, cold, electricity, radiation, toxins, aging, and disease, and he can survive indefinitely without food or water even before his “curse” from Death left him immortal, unable to die. His mind is also invulnerable to most forms of psychic attack, and can project a psionic blast of energy as well as blasts of plasma/cosmic energy from his eyes and hands.
Yeah, he’s kind of a big deal.
As expected, The Avengers dominated the weekend box office. Authorities on such things knew it would do well, but they underestimated just how well:
The superhero smorgasbord featuring Captain America, Iron Man, Thor and The Hulk brought in $200.3 million its opening weekend in 4,300 U.S. theaters, smashing the previous domestic record for any movie’s first three days, Walt Disney Studios said Sunday in a news release.
While “The Avengers” was predicted to be a hit, the performance outpaced expectations. Box Office Mojo, for instance, had projected the film would pull in $172.5 million on its opening weekend.
Its ultimate domestic haul is well ahead of the $168 million “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2″ conjured up in its opening weekend domestically in July.
On Friday alone, the movie took in $80 million.
No surprise: Disney announced a sequel:
Disney CEO Bob Iger has confirmed the obvious today. After smashing through the record books with its $207 million domestic opening weekend and ruling the world with over $702 million grossed to date, Walt Disney Studios is working on The Avengers 2.
Those wondering where The Avengers 2 might go need only to stay until after the credits of the first film. (Spoiler alert!). That’s cosmic villain Thanos, who makes a cameo at the end of the movie. He’s a force to reckon with, having killed every one of the Avengers in the comic book world.
You really can’t sum up Thanos in one line, so I won’t try. I will say that he is powerful; Black Widow and Hawkeye are probably going to be replaced in the sequel. They’ll need some Avengers with much greater powers than guns, arrows and acrobatics.
A primer is needed on Thanos, and the other news from Marvel Studios that you need to know for the future of the series. Look for that soon in my next Superhero List Post, here at PJ Lifestyle.
And see Duane’s previous hits:
The movie I have waited my entire life to see arrives in all its IMAX and 3D glory this week. My desire for this movie to happen echoes in the declaration of its director, Joss Whedon, who said at ComicCon, “I have had a dream, all my life, and it was not this good!”
What makes this movie so fantastic is how they have been able to build up with five different movies, each essentially a prequel to this one. And then they were able to bring the original actors — with the exception of Ed Norton or Eric Bana for the Hulk — and put them all in one epic.
Each of those movies stood on their own feet as blockbusters, but some were better than others. Which was the best? Why was one not as good as the others?
Great questions. Let’s find out. Starting with the movie that was, ironically, the weakest of the five:
As a comic book fanboy, it always irritates me when Hollywood thinks they can improve on something that has worked for decades. Take this poster for The Amazing Spider-Man:
What logic puts a human face on The Lizard? So he looks more like a human? He’s a super-human monster in a comic book movie, for Pete’s sake! And where’s the lab coat?
I do like the international poster, though:
And I like that they went with a skinny kid. Truer to the book.
Another thing they are getting right in this one: The web-shooters look awesome!
How many times have you read about one of your favorite comic book characters finally getting his own movie, learned the actor that was cast to play him, and thought, “What were they smoking?” It’s happened over and over. It’s going to happen again.
What else would you expect from Hollywood, where they focus more on putting the pretty people in the roles, rather than the right people. And sometimes the movie is horrible to begin with and they are only taking whoever answers the phone.
Priorities like that make the following list possible. Here are the 10 worst comic book movie casting blunders, starting with…
10. Nicolas Cage – Johnny Blaze/Ghost Rider
Johnny Blaze is a young motorcycle daredevil in the comics. In the movie, Cage looks every bit his 43 years. He looks tired. I keep seeing the scene in the graveyard where he’s drinking coffee and Caretaker says, “You all right?” and Cage replies, “Yeah, I’m good. Feels like my skull’s on fire, but I’m good.”
That’s how he looked through the movie. Like an over-the-hill stunt rider that just wanted to hang up his leather chaps and take a nap. This would have worked if the movie were based on the Danny Ketch thread of the Ghost Rider story and Johnny Blaze shows up years after having been the rider, but that’s not what they did.
It seems like rather than find the right actor for the story, they worked the story around the actor.
9. Vinnie Jones — Juggernaut
The Juggernaut is massive. According the the Marvel Comics wiki, he stands nine feet, five inches tall and weighs in at over 1,900 pounds. I can look past how they changed the origin of the character for X-Men, The Last Stand — making him a mutant when in the comics he’s magical — but I can’t accept the way they simply took Vinnie Jones, slapped a poorly designed costume on him, and called it good.
Juggernaut is big enough that he would warrant his own vehicle and security for transport. He wouldn’t be shoved in the same trailer as all the regular mutants. This guy is a tank.
In the movie, he was Vinnie Jones in a leftover costume from Gladiator.
Don’t get me wrong. Jones is good at playing really hardcore bad guys that don’t take crap from anyone. He would have been great voicing a CGI Juggernaut, perhaps putting his face on the special effects, as they did with Mark Ruffalo and the Hulk. But casting him without any assistance from the special effects department did the character an injustice.
8. Ryan Reynolds — Green Lantern
Ryan Reynolds brought an awkward feel to the role. Hal Jordan is one of the most serious comic book heroes in the genre. While arrogant, he wasn’t aloof when he first had the ring. He has a sense of humor, but he didn’t throw it around because there wasn’t any time for that. There were serious things going on.
Reynolds nails the arrogant part, but has the baggage of all his previous — and sometimes hilarious — roles. Because of that, people had a hard time seeing him as the super-serious Jordan.
The teenagers of the Adolescent Demo Division live inside a media-saturated universe. From birth they prepare to star in their own reality television show as professional video gamers and product testers. They live with the dream that if they perform well then someday they can “level up” and graduate to the real world where perhaps they can meet their birth mothers.
However, this immersion in virtual worlds yielded unforeseen consequences their corporate handlers fail to understand. During the time the A.D.D. spent playing video games and giving their opinions on products they developed the ability to “dekh” new interpretations of reality. Their eyes go blue and all of a sudden they perceive hidden connections behind the media narratives:
This vision allows the A.D.D. to see how empty the video game, hyper-consumer lifestyle is. They realize they are in charge of their own destiny and don’t have to live their parents’ dreams.
Not good for the corporate executives relying on the A.D.D. for their bottom line.
But Rushkoff’s comic isn’t firing shots at corporate America.
Read his nonfiction book Life Inc. for the author’s dissection of corporatism’s infiltration of Western culture and lifestyle. I usually hand this one to my progressive friends when they start ranting about corporate greed and the need for government regulations to save us from Mark Zuckerberg. “Yes, I agree with you that corporations do bad things sometimes,” I concede. “But you’re not going to stop them by passing laws and electing Democrats. You need to change yourself and shift the culture if you want to change the world.”
A.D.D. shows us how this actually works in the real world. And don’t let the science fiction props, new media lingo, and thriller plot fool you. This fantastic metaphor of “dekhing” a new reality — similar to the “grokking” of Robert Heinlein’s Stranger in a Strange Land — has basis in reality and Rushkoff’s generation points the direction. The late Andrew Breitbart was only one real life example but there are many more.
Comic books (or graphic novels to those who care) have had plenty of big-screen opportunities, especially in the superhero genre. But many of today’s cutting-edge, literary-minded comics would make even better television. Just as comics have grown more serious and respected in the last few years, so has television – no longer just the bastard child of film, television is now an art in itself, and like comics its writers tell long-form stories that explore characters with depth and complexity. Here are five comic book series that would never fit into the standard two-hour feature film treatment, but would make killer TV.
Neil Gaiman’s seminal 10-volume series seems to defy adaptation. It tells the story of ten god-like creatures who represent the passions that push and pull all conscious life; the main character is the personification of dreams, Morpheus, a tortured wanderer growing weary of his immortality. Surrounding him is an epically sprawling cast of human, animal, and mythical creatures from the past and present.
Accompanying Gaiman’s storyweaving is a phalanx of artists: instead of maintaining a uniform artistic vision throughout the series, Sandman featured a succession of guest artists who illustrated each storyline in their own distinct styles.While many fans of Sandman will likely claim that it’s Gaiman’s inventive storytelling and larger-than-life characters that make this television-worthy material, I’d hold that it’s actually the art that sets it apart from all the other epic fantasy that has been hitting screens lately. Because Sandman is as much about the look as it is about the story, it would be a great opportunity to experiment in a new form of television art: instead of having a team of revolving directors step in to direct episodes in a single style, let a series of directors take each storyline and tell it in their own way. The actors could unify the series, but the visuals would feature the same kaleidescope that made the original comic so unique.
On Demetria, islands of land float in the air above a planet of uninhabitable toxic oceans. City-states built on these islands engage in a medieval push-and-tug of wars and negotiations based on trade and transportation. In a delightfully steampunk flourish, the main mode of transportation between the island city-states are flying galleons which harness the wind in sails for propulsion and steering, while anti-gravity engines keep them afloat in the air.
Meridian‘s publisher went out of business before the story could reach a satisfying conclusion. However, it lasted long enough to prove its potential as a fantasy that could appeal to both young adults and grown-ups, with a light touch. It also had the potential to evolve over several seasons, with a plot that offered many opportunities for development and a solid core cast of characters. The main character, Sephie, is a strong, intelligent female character who avoids both fantasy stereotypes of ditzy damsel and sexy Amazon. Before the series’ cut off, the story already had several promising twists, including mistaken reports of a death, love triangles, and palace intrigue. And any fan of the original, truncated series wouldn’t mind seeing it finally brought to a conclusion on screen.
While a growing number of articles suggest that New York is slowly reverting to its bad old seventies days under Mayor Bloomberg, there’s good news for beleaguered Manhattanites. “Prowler” is now on the case:
Superheroes usually like to keep their real identities hidden, but one Brooklyn woman is taking off her mask and telling the entire world who she is.
Nicole Abramovici is “Prowler,” a 31-year-old businesswoman by day who dons a costume at night to do her part to save the world, one homeless person and abandoned animal at a time.
And, as she revealed to the New York Post, she’s not alone — she’s part of a group of real-life heroes who slip on masks and capes to do charity work.
“I dress up because I’m part of this group called Superheroes Anonymous,” Abramovici said. “The costume draws awareness to the cause, and it’s exciting and people dig it.”
Prowler’s debut in Manhattan follows up “Phoenix Jones” becoming a video phenomenon even beyond his home turf in Seattle:
Surprisingly, Wikipedia has blown the cover for Phoenix’s once-secret identity:
Phoenix Jones(born Benjamin John Francis Fodor, 1988) is the leader of a ten-member citizen crime-prevention patrol group who call themselves the Rain City Superhero Movement, operating out of Seattle and Lynnwood, Washington. In a CBS news broadcast, Jones is shown entering a back room of an unnamed comic book store in which he changes into costume which consists of a Dragon Skin bulletproof vest and stab plating, as well as equipment including a stun baton, pepper spray or tear gas, handcuffs and a first aid kit.
Jones says he wanted to take policing matters into his own hands after a few incidents changed his mind about Seattle. The first was when Jones says that his car was broken into and his son was injured after returning to the vehicle and falling on the broken glass. Jones was told that several people saw the break-in happen, but did not intervene.According to Jones the car window had been broken by a rock with a mask wrapped around it, which Jones left in the car’s glove box. Later, Jones says that he encountered a friend being seriously assaulted outside a bar, and after calling 911 he put on the mask from the earlier break-in and “made a commotion” until the police showed up.”And I thought, why didn’t someone help him? There were seventy people outside that bar and no one did anything.”
Jones went on to develop a full costume and pseudonym, when his crime-fighting behaviour made him too recognizable. He says the best way to prevent getting mistaken for a criminal by the police is to wear a “supersuit”, although local police have expressed concern that the strange costumes may lead to emergency calls from citizens who mistake the “superheroes” for criminals. Jones says that all members of the Rain City Superhero Movement have a military or mixed martial arts background. He does not condone other people dressing up and fighting crime.
Unless they’ve previously been registered with the Justice League of America or graduated from the Xavier Institute.
In the film, High Noon, the bad guy was named Frank Miller and the good guy was named Will Kane. In real life, Frank Miller’s the good guy taking on real life bad guys through his work as a cartoonist. He’s taken on Jihad with HOLY TERROR and he just wrote a piece against the “occupiers” called ANARCHY that has made leftists crazier than usual. To Americans who are sick and tired of the enemy and his leftist enablers, show some support for a man who’s essentially standing alone as Will Kane did in High Noon.
To see my own cartooning work against Jihad and the Occupiers, please visit my blog.
The Batman universe ought to have been fertile video game ground for years now. It has everything: a righteous yet complicated hero, a solid cast of supporting characters, and probably the best villains of any comic universe. But Batman video games have tended to be forgettable disappointments.
That changed with Rocksteady studio’s Batman: Arkham Asylum. Released in September 2009, Arkham Asylum blew the video gaming world away with its great story, tight yet layered game play, and its crisp, atmospheric visuals. Asylum put Batman in a sprawling, gritty and Gothic world worthy of him, and set him up against the usual villains in a way that was true to the comic books, yet grown-up, fresh and even real. Asylum got the details right from Batman’s gadgetry to the rats and roaches infesting the creepy island sanitarium, and by staying away from the TV cartoons and both the Tim Burton and Christopher Nolan movie versions of the franchise, created its own viable space in the Batman culture. Asylum won game of the year awards and was the first real runaway hit in Batman video gaming.
Rocksteady’s Batman returned this week to an expectant gaming universe, in a huge new adventure called Batman: Arkham City. Its release has been the equivalent of a big movie opening; one Gamestop near me had an opening night party that included a screening of The Dark Knight, food and giveaways leading up to the midnight hour when discs could go home with gamers. The game’s trailer promised to deliver a massive, open world with you at the center, as Batman. Sign. Me. Up.
As the title implies, in the second episode Batman is no longer confined to an island asylum in Gotham harbor. The mayor of they city has taken Gotham’s villains, the thugs and the insane, walled off a chuck of downtown, and put them there in what amounts to a kind of free range madhouse. As you might imagine, both Bruce Wayne and Batman have a problem with this and decide to investigate. Dr. Hugo Strange presides over the insanity, and opens the game threatening to expose Batman’s deepest secrets.
So there’s your setting: Every major Batman villain lurking or ruling within some part of an ultraviolent, even sadistict, world, called Arkham City. This, as you might have guessed, isn’t really a kid’s game. The grit comes with some coarse language, so parents might want to keep that in mind when evaluating whether to buy the game. It comes with a teen rating for a reason.
Curiously though, this report comes from CBS (which is busy also burying Charlie Harper), not the Daily Bugle:
There’s a new web-slinger in town.
New Yorkers take their fictional heroes seriously, so it may come as a shock to some that Peter Parker, the Queens native whose destiny was forever altered by a radioactive/genetically altered spider, has been killed off in the “Ultimates” imprint of Marvel Comics. The Ultimate series is different from Marvel’s standard line, in which Peter Parker is still happily toiling away as everybody’s favorite hard-luck hero.
No, in the Ultimates series, Peter Parker gets killed at the hands of his nemesis the Green Goblin. But, being a comic book series, no hero stays dead for long. While Peter Parker may be gone, a new kid is stepping into the tights: Miles Morales.
Miles Morales is a half-black, half-Hispanic super-powered teen who gets into the hero game after being inspired by Parker’s death.
CBS concludes by pondering, “No word on whether the change in ethnicity is going to play a role in casting decisions in upcoming Spider-Man movies or Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark.”
My guess is probably not — we all grew up with Peter Parker; movie and theatergoers would very likely wonder why he’s gone missing. And as the report notes above, Peter is still cheerfully battling crime in one of Marvel’s many alternate universes.
But when will Hollywood get around to fighting the Secret Wars at the movies? The small screen version’s special effects are increasingly looking a bit dated these days.
Really Neil Gaiman’s comic masterpiece The Sandman shouldn’t be a film but an HBO series.
The 10-volume epic tells the story of Morpheus, the King of the Dreams, and his family the Endless (who are other embodiments of human experience: Destiny, Death, Desire, Despair, Destruction, and Delight/Delirium). It’s the comic world’s crowning jewel – the most literary, sophisticated work ever. Gaiman incorporates stories and myths from cultures around the planet and sets his narratives all throughout history. (After all, as long as there have been stories there has been the King of the Dreams.) Perhaps with the success of Game of Thrones there will be more interest in exploring long-form fantasy projects?
I’m not even sure where to begin with casting…
After reading Douglas Rushkoff’s Testament series, which ran for two years starting in 2006, you’ll never look at the Bible the same way again. Doug — who’s also a friend whose books I’ve written about regularly — takes stories from the Old Testament and juxtaposes them with a near-future, dystopian, science fiction thriller. The series begins with Abraham trying to sacrifice Isaac and leaps throughout the Torah for other narratives. Rushkoff’s thesis is that the stories of the Bible are always happening throughout human history and our own lives. The comic book medium in particular allows plenty of startlingly effective storytelling techniques.
Film can of course do similar things – perhaps by having the same actor portray multiple roles. Not unlike Bosch Fawstin’s The Infidel, the previous item on this beta version of the top 10 comics to be made into movies list, the provocative intellectual nature of the series makes establishment entertainment funding a long shot in the world of today.
3. The Infidel and Pigman
Of all the titles on the list, here’s the film that’s most unlikely to ever be made, at least by Hollywood. It’s the story of two brothers who have opposite reactions to 9/11. One recommits himself to Islam and joins the Jihad. The other renounces his former faith even more and creates an anti-Jihad superhero named Pigman. The first issue of the comic (available for digital download here) artfully interweaves stories from this main narrative with sequences from the comic-within-a-comic Pigman. It’s a tremendous piece of work, both at the artistic level and as a philosophical statement both personal and political.
I reviewed my friend Bosch Fawstin’s comic here.
For a film to be made it would require independent investors with a lot of guts. Perhaps as the cost of creating animation continues to go down and the skills and technology filter out to the masses an enterprising Objectivist animator will see a potential project here. Given how controversial Bosch’s ideas are — he’s the anti-Jihad movement’s most prominent illustrator — a film version seems only feasible with cartoons for the Pigman sequences. But then again, that’s in the world of today. Who knows what the ideological makeup of this country will be 20 years from now.
Check out Bosch’s response to how they edited his interview here.
4. The Invisibles
In a sense The Invisibles was already made into the film. It’s well-known that the series was a core influence on The Matrix and that the Wachowski brothers plagiarized a lot of the themes and ideas. But that doesn’t matter. An adaptation of The Invisibles can and should still be made.
The premise of The Invisibles is that a team of counterculture superheroes is at war defending freedom from a conspiracy of alien beings secretly enslaving the planet. Really the fun of the series, though, is in the strange plot twists, memorable characters, and alt-culture ideas the eccentric creator Grant Morrison infused into the story. The Invisibles is basically a Gen-X, comic book variant of Robert Anton Wilson and Robert Shea’s The Illuminatus! Trilogy (another property worth talking about in cinematic terms at some point.) Here’s a video of Wilson laying out the quantum perspective that informs Morrison’s approach to the superhero story:
Now this is an argument that might get me in trouble with the fanboy community but I’ll make it anyway: why not do a prequel to Watchmen just telling more about the crime fighting experiences of Rorschach? Sure, Alan Moore would never write it or approve in any way but there are plenty of talented writers out there who could do incredible things with the character. In a sense it could be a superhero homage to Taxi Driver, and
could should even be a period piece set in the grungy New York City of the 1970s.
Or at the very least a film exploring this type of individualist super hero — a film on the Question or Mr. A.
(Hat tip to my Objectivist buddy Bosch Fawstin on the latter half of this idea.)
6. Silver Surfer
Given the relatively poor reaction to the galactic adventurer aspect of Green Lantern does that mean that Hollywood would be less likely to make comic book superhero movies that are not set primarily on earth? While in some cases that is likely true with a character as iconic as the Silver Surfer methinks an exception could be made.
My pitch: Think Waking Life meets Iron Man meets 2001: A Space Odyssey except with mind-blowing special effects. Instant cult film.
Give me a superhero movie with a brain in its head and some great visuals. Is that too much to ask for?
This Vertigo-title features Spider Jerusalem, a futuristic version of notorious gonzo journalist Hunter S. Thompson. The science fiction series that ran from 1997-2002 was set in a colorful, bizarre, dystopian future that would be unforgettable on film. And the role of Spider in the hands of a great actor could set a new level of cinematic badass. Think Johnny Depp as Captain Jack except with more mania, less goofiness, and a sharper edge.
There’s been talk of a film but none ever materialized. Perhaps to come as the cost of high quality special effects continues to fall? This is a project that has an independent film sensibility but requires a sizable special effect budget.
8. The Riddler
The Riddler needs to be featured prominently as the sole villain in a Batman film. He apparently won’t be in the one coming out next Summer.
The current screen performance of Batman’s most intellectual enemy is a campy turn by Jim Carrey. It’s time for a new actor’s characterization of the villain to make Carrey’s clowning a forgotten memory. In the last Batman film the late Heath Ledger reinvented the Joker and forever changed how the character was regarded. There is just as much potential for an A-list actor to do the same as the Riddler. Who should it be?
One of the things that we’re hoping to do more in the future with PJ Lifestlye and PJ Tatler is to use the shorter blog format to develop ideas that will then be polished up for longer, full-length PJM articles. We’re going to look to PJM’s commenters to provide arguments that will help shape the direction the PJM articles ultimately take. In this way the blog medium can be taken to an even more explicit level of reader-writer collaboration as we all work together to make sense of the world.
I’d like to begin this New Media experiment with a lighthearted subject appropriate for the middle of the Summer season: a discussion of the comic book blockbusters. Each year more seem to be released, and maybe it’s just me but is the level of quality rising? One can only imagine how the third Batman film will be in Summer 2012…
As the genre moves forward it’s worth thinking about what comic properties Hollywood has yet to touch that they should. So here’s my first guesses as to an attempt at ranking the 10 comics that I think would make successful, provocative summer blockbusters. This list is a work in progress. I hope that PJM readers will be able correct my mistakes and offer up better suggestions or a more accurate order. I’ll be laying out 4 parts today, 4 parts tomorrow, and the last 2 on Monday — each post scheduled throughout the day.
Initial thoughts on the comic and the film will be short and basic — the titles decided on for the final PJM article will be longer and more in depth with sharper arguments enhanced by the credited thoughts of PJM’s best commenters.
What I most want to figure out is: which titles have the potential to become the most satisfying, effective films? The ultimate ranking will be based on that criterion, not necessarily which comic is “better” than the other. Suggestions of which actors, screenwriters, and directors would be most appropriate for each film would be appreciated.
So let’s begin:
10. Doctor Doom
This metal-masked sorcerer, dictator, and technological master was featured in the first Fantastic Four movie BY NAME but the character had nothing to do with the actual arch villain featured in the comics. The REAL Doctor Doom — who is a much more intimidating, powerful, threatening character — should be explored in his own film and fought perhaps by the Avengers.
There’s the potential here for whoever the actor is who plays Doom to really deliver a major career performance the way Robert Downey Jr. and Christian Bale have. And the creation of the Doom character would combine the technological elements of Iron Man with the magical reality of Thor.The storytelling potentials here are many.
What actor would do a good job as the character and who should direct the film?