Tag Archives: the flash

Soaring with Supergirl

(Spoilers ahead, obviously)

It’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’s…the first DC superhero I have ever really liked. I’m not joking. Batman and Superman both bug me because they are both so popular. And Superman is just so perfect.  But, ICYMI, Supergirl just wrapped up its first season on CBS and it was spectacular. Supergirl is my new favorite superhero because she’s 1) not dark and brooding and 2) a modern (slightly clueless) twenty-something just like me. I didn’t have terribly high expectations for the TV show but it delivered.  It’s not the best-written but it’s still very high-quality storytelling and family friendly to boot. After Star Wars Rebels, this is my second time watching a television series all the way through, but allow me to break it down for you.

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My Top Ten DC Comics Superheroes

I read a list recently of the ten greatest superhero characters of all time in  Marvel and DC Comics. I had some major issues with this particular list, well two really major issues. First, I don’t like trying to compare Marvel and DC Comics and including both in the same top ten list just seems impossible and weird in my mind. In a lot of ways, it really is like comparing apples and oranges.  My other major issue was where the ranked some of the characters. In particular, I did not like where they had Superman ranked. He clocked in at number seven, simply because the person writing the piece does not like Superman. I get that, but he deserves a higher spot than seven simply because he’s kind of the original superhero. He deserves higher than seven. I get that these kinds of writings are all subjective, but I think most would agree that seven for Superman is too low. So, I decided to remedy this list by putting together my own TWO lists, one for Marvel and one for DC Comics. We will start with DC Comics this month since Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice opens in just over a week. Next month I will publish my Marvel list. So, here we go:

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This Week in Geek Jan 31-Feb 6

Another week is in the books, and we are bringing back our “This Week in Geek” feature. In this feature we are going to take a look at a few of the stories that happened this week in the world of Geek. We aren’t a news site, so this won’t necessarily be a comprehensive list, just a few highlights. If you see a story throughout the week that you think should be featured here, then send it along to me and I will include it. You can send it directly to thegeekymormon@yahoo.com. Alright, let’s get to This Week in Geek.

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DC’s Multiverse vs. Marvel’s Cinematic Universe, Part 2

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Yesterday, I began my look at the two big comic book companies’ future movie plans with a look at Marvel. I think, at this point, the only thing you can really call Marvel’s attempt at creating one cohesive television/movie universe is a big success. Well, more like a giant success. With GOTG being the major blockbuster it was last year, it became apparent that Marvel can do no wrong (as long as you forget Iron Man 2). They are the reigning champs, and it doesn’t look like they are looking to give up that title any time soon. Avengers: Age of Ultron looks amazing, and somehow, Ant-Man is picking up steam. DC has only put one movie out there as part of their cinematic universe, and that was a couple of years ago. It will have been 3 years by the time the next one, Dawn of Justice, comes out. By comparison, in that same span of time, Marvel will have released 7 films total. 7. It almost seems like DC isn’t even trying.

That’s not totally true. The idea for DC to put together their own universe like Marvel’s has been around for a while, but they just haven’t been able to get it off the ground. The original plan was to launch the DC universe with Green Lantern (2011), and begin building from there. Unfortunately, we all saw Green Lantern and it was just painful. That put the stop on the whole one universe, Justice League idea for a while. DC started going in a different direction, called TV, as it launched Arrow. The series became a hit, leading to a spinoff series, The Flash. These two series, however, were not attached to the Green Lantern film. Or to the Nolan Batman trilogy, which was also not connected to the Green Lantern film. Leaving DC with three different universes in which their heroes now resided. Enter Man of Steel (2013). This introduces yet another universe, and DC’s first hit movie of this century not starring Batman. In the time between 2011 and 2013, it became apparent that Marvel’s whole plan is coming together nicely, and with MOS’s success, DC revisits the idea of creating one big universe where all their heroes can reside. They decide to go for it, but they still take a different approach, as Geoff Johns refers to their productions as being part of a Multiverse, instead of a universe. Oh bother, DC.

What is it?

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Basically, it was DC is calling their upcoming productions, both Films and TV shows. Marvel had their catchy “Marvel Cinematic Universe,” so DC had to come up with something catchy to compete. Hence, the DC Multiverse. Think of it as being similar to when DC started their “New 52” in the comics, so Marvel had to respond with “Marvel NOW!” The good news for comic book fans is that both companies have kept both stupid monikers going for way to long. (What is the rule for how long something can be called “New”?) To be fair, DC isn’t just trying to come up with a clever name. They are also trying to cleverly sidestep a major issue. They don’t want to tie in Arrow and The Flash  with their upcoming films. They want them to be totally separate. So, because fans eat this stuff up, they have decided that DC will have a multiverse in their Television/Cinematic world just like they have in the comics. In other words, don’t expect to see Stephen Amell or Grant Gustin sharing the screen with Ben Affleck and Henry Cavill. In fact, they have already cast Ezra Miller to play the role of the Flash in the Justice league and Flash movies. No special appearances by the heroes in the big movies on the small screen either. It’s just not happening.

Why it Works

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image by LoganChico at loganchico.deviantart.com

It will work for one big reason. We, the fans, want to see it. We finally got to see the Avengers come together, and it was awesome. Now we get to see the two biggest superheroes ever come together for the first time on the big screen. That alone is worth all of it. At least I hope it will be. DC really has an opportunity to make all of this something special, just like Marvel has. Let’s just hope they don’t screw it up. In addition to seeing Batman and Superman together, we will get to see Wonder Woman for the first time on the big screen, as well as the Flash, and of course, everyone’s favorite, Aquaman. DC has so many characters that we have not seen up on the big screen before, so it will make for some exciting, fresh characters.

It will also work, because this model allows DC to do whatever they want on the big screen as well as the little screen. They have a good thing going on Arrow and The Flash,  but they aren’t tied to making that world the same for every character. In fact, it seems like Gotham is taking place in another universe as well. The result is, Gotham is not hindered by what’s happening in Arrow or The Flash. The studio doesn’t have to give any explanation for any kind of inconsistencies fans will see when Batman is on the screen in Dawn of Justice and something doesn’t match up to what is happening in Gotham.  The studio has already provided us with the answer to any of those questions-it’s a multi-verse.

Why it Doesn’t Work

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To be clear, The Flash and Arrow are not reasons why this model does not work. Well, maybe indirectly. More like examples of a potential issue. That issue is that it is going to get confusing. Right now, DC has 3 different universes going: The movie universe, the “Flarrow” universe, and the Gotham universe. Wait, 4. I forgot Constantine. 4 different universes right now. That could potentially grow with other projects that DC has announced, like Titans on TNT and Supergirl for CBS. Both of these series could be set in a different universe. A different universe from the 4 mentioned, and a different universe from each other. That could bring it up to 6 different universes. That is going to be hard to keep track of. Who is in which universe? And who knows about whom, and so on. Maybe the plan is to have a universe for each network that DC has a show on, and then the plan is to have a show on 52 different networks (they seem obsessed with 52). I doubt that is really the plan, but hopefully you get the point. It seems like, at least on TV, there is little to no cohesiveness, and that is kind of lame too. At the very least, keep all the TV properties in one universe and the movie properties in another.

That wraps up my look at the two different models, at least for right now. It is really hard to tell what will happen with DC because we just don’t have enough from them right now to make any kind of judgement. All we can do is speculate on how it will all play out. I am hoping for the best. I am not really interested in who “wins” between the two companies, because in the end,I am hoping I win and we have years and years of quality superhero entertainment coming our way. What are your thoughts on the whole thing? Do you like Marvel’s or DC’s model better? Let us know in the comments.

 

My FanX Guest Wishlist

I feel kind of weird writing this post. I mean, I feel like the guest lineup for FanX is pretty solid, so I don’t want it to seem like I am complaining or nitpicking or anything.  I fully recognize that the team that is bringing you FanX has done a stellar job to get some fantastic guests, and we really shouldn’t complain about the lineup.  That being said, there are always folks that I would love to see come and make an appearance. Besides, I ran a similar post just before last fall’s Salt Lake Comic Con, and one of the guests I wished for is coming (Matt Smith), and although we didn’t get Mark Hammil, we are getting Carrie Fischer. I just hope they read this list and maybe a star or two  from the list will come next time.

1. David Tennant

tv DOCTOR WHOThis is a carry over from my previous list, and it might also seem a little picky. I am very excited that Matt Smith is coming. It’s just that Tennant was my favorite Doctor. There was just something really cool about him as the Doctor, and goofy at the same time. It would just be awesome if we could get him to come here. Plus, now he will be appearing in a new Marvel series as a villain, so he has that going for him as well, in the geek cred category. This would just be great.

2. Mark Hammil

"Guardians Of The Galaxy" - UK Premiere - Red Carpet ArrivalsI love Star Wars, so naturally, I am very excited about Carrie Fischer being at the event. She is big time, as far as Star Wars gets, and it is amazing that she will be here at our little show, in the same year that the latest Star Wars movie will be released. All of that is just really amazing, and I was floored when I saw that she was coming. All of that being said, Hammil would be just as incredible.  He is my only other carry over from my old list, I promise. He has done so mush in the geek community, that whether you’re a Star Wars fan or not, he has probably done something that you do follow. For example, he has had a great voice acting career, including his stint as the Joker on the Batman Animated Series. His is probably the first voice you hear in your head when you think of the Joker. It would just be incredible if he came and was able to do a panel and tell all of his stories on the different shows he has been a part of, or if he participated in a script reading. It would just be incredible.

3. Zachary Levi

1024x768chuck_sarah1I love Chuck. It was one of my all time favorite shows, and one of my wife’s all time favorites. We have had Agent Casey at last year’s FanX, and this year we have Shaw, so let’s get Chuck for next time. In addition to being in Chuck as the main character, Zachary Levi also appeared in Thor: The Dark World and has recently been tied to the new Heroes re-boot. All of that spells geek in my book, and it would be great to have him here. It would have been awesome to have him here with Brandon Routh or Adam Baldwin to make for a great Chuck centered panel.

4. Grant Gustin

grant-gustin-full-body-flash I don’t know anything about Gustin from his Glee days, and frankly, I don’t care to. I do know that he has made a fine Barry Allen and Flash on the new CW series. I am glued to the TV once a week following the exploits of the Scarlet Speedster, and I think Gustin is a big reason why. Last year, at Salt Lake Comic Con, we had Stephen Amell from Arrow, and it was awesome. Now we need the CW’s newest star, The Flash. As a bonus, his team would be awesome too, like Cisco. That would make for a great panel. Or even better would be to get Grant Gustin to come, and get Stephen Amell to come back and have a crossover panel where both of them could be on stage together. I mean, their crossover event earlier this season was one of the biggest TV events of the year, the fans loved it, and the fans here in Salt Lake City, the Geek Capital of the World, would love a crossover panel. That would be a great foundation for a killer con.

5. One of the Other Star Trek Captains

siskoI’ll be honest, Picard is my favorite captain. He always has been, and I think a big reason why is because TNG has always been my Star Trek. He is my favorite, but he is not the only one I would like to see in person at a panel. Sisko was a great captain, and I have heard that Avery Brooks is fantastic in person. I have seen video of interviews with him, and he seems very interesting. As does Kate Mulgrew who played Janeway in Voyager. This would be a killer year to get her to one of our events, since Voyager just hit their 20th anniversary on January 16. Then there is Scott Bakula who not only played Captain Archer in Enterprise, but he is also known for Quantum Leap and as Chuck’s dad in Chuck (another great multi-person panel if he and Levi came).

There you have it.  I don’t expect any of these guests to be announced this week just before FanX, but it would be really cool if any or all of them showed up at Comic Con in September, or the next FanX. To be honest, it seems like it has grown very quiet on the guest announcements from FanX, and I have heard that there will most likely be no more guest announcements for this round. I could be wrong. Maybe another killer guest committed at the last-minute. Either way, this year’s line up is very good, the best they have had so far, so i am looking forward to it getting even better in the future.

Who would be on your guest wish list? I am sure it is not the same as mine. Maybe we have a couple in common? Let me know in the comments.

Can the New DCCU be Better Than the MCU?

In case you missed it because A. You’re not really a geek, or B. You have been living under a rock somewhere, DC made a major announcement involving 12 films between now and 2020.  They even managed to one up Marvel by not just revealing the dates they have marked and set aside for the movies, they have also told us which titles will be released on which dates.  It is clear, they are stepping up to go toe to toe with Marvel.  This leads me to ask the question: Which is going to be better in the long run, the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe) or the DCCU (The DC Cinematic Universe)?  First of all, I don’t even know if the new DC movie world will be called the DCCU.  I just did that because of MCU.  I saw it called the DCCC or the DC Cinematic Continuum. That’s a lot of C’s, so I like the DCCU better, but of course they will need to be different from Marvel, so maybe the DCCM-The DC Cinematic Multiverse.  Or maybe the DC C52-The DC Cinematic 52, because we all know how much DC loves the number 52.  In any case, the question remains, will DC be able to compete with the Marvel on the big screen? Or is it too late?  Marvel has been doing this for a few years now, and it seems like they can do now wrong, with Guardians of the Galaxy blowing up the box office this summer, after being a title that no one had ever heard of over the last 30 years.  The truth is, I don’t think that is going to happen with every random title Marvel might try to ram down our throats, and I think DC really has an advantage to be more successful in the long run.  It may not seem like it now, but trust me, it’s going to happen.  Let me tell you why, I think, DC is going to outlast and eventually take down Marvel at the box office.

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It might seem like Marvel has some amazing stuff coming our way, especially with the announcement that Captain America 3 is bringing us the Civil War story line. And that is probably true, but this announcement brings up what I believe are the two biggest issues facing the MCU right now.  Let’s look at issue number one.  Civil War is going to be massive and huge and change everything, and then what?  Cap will be dead, it looks like Robert Downey, Jr. is planning on playing Tony Stark forever, we don’t know if Hemsworth will be back as Thor, and for whatever reason, Marvel has zero plans to do a really good Hulk movie.  The four biggest names and most marketable characters Marvel has in the MCU will be gone.  The Iron Man movies were all huge hits, and Cap and Thor did alright on their own, leading to the massively successful Avengers movie, leading to more successful sequels, that will be followed by another huge Avengers movie, which will lead to another round of successful movies for the big four (minus Hulk, sorry big guy) that will lead to a huge, epic Avengers 3, followed by nothing.  Talk about a let down.  The good news is that Marvel has plans to expand their universe with the likes of Ant-Man, Doctor Strange, Daredevil, Iron Fist, and Luke Cage.  These characters are popular with hard-core comics fans because their titles typically had some of the premiere writing and stories, but they are not that marketable.  Marvel led with the biggest names they had, and like it or not, they will be on their way out, just as DC is hitting their stride.

The lack of back ups for the big four brings us to issue number two.  Quick think of your favorite Marvel super hero not named Thor, Iron Man, Cap, or Hulk.  Did you think of this guy?

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Or maybe this guy?

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Or maybe these folks?

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Or maybe even this guy?

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Well forget about all of them.  While each of the above referenced characters will be appearing in movies, none of them will be appearing in the MCU.  Way back in the day, in the time before RDJ became Iron Man, the idea of a combined cinematic universe for Marvel’s characters just didn’t exist.  Marvel believed their characters were marketable, and could draw in big crowds, but they didn’t have any way to put it out there.  There wasn’t a Marvel Studios, and at the time, marvel wasn’t doing so hot. They did what seemed like the only smart thing at the time.  They sold off the rights to their more popular characters.  Spider-Man went to Sony, X-Men went to Fox along with the Fantastic Four.  Other characters were sold off too, like Daredevil, The Punisher, and Ghost Rider.  Their movies were so horrible, that we won’t mention them here again.  The point is, this was the only way Marvel saw to get their product out there, so they sold the rights, and those studios all still have the rights, and they’re not giving them up.  The only reason Marvel still had the rights to the Avengers is because nobody wanted them.  That worked out well and lucky for Marvel, but the time is quickly approaching when the Avengers as we know them won’t be around, and having properties like the X-Men or Spider-Man would be nice when that happens.  Plus, now that they are doing these major events like Civil War in the movies, it is going to hurt to not have those properties.  Spider-Man played no small role in the Civil War story.  I’m just saying.

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These are the two major issues why I think in the long run, DC will do better and outlast Marvel. When it comes to forming one unified Universe in the films, DC just has the upper hand.  Yes, DC is leading out with their two most well-known characters to start things off, but they have a lot of interesting, main stream characters that they can throw at us as well.  I mean, Yes, Superman and Batman are as big as it gets, but the Flash and Green Lantern and Aquaman and Wonder Woman are all pretty well-known as well.  The movies that they have announced are all heavy hitters, minus Suicide Squad, which will end up being DC’s version of GOTG, incase you were wondering why the rush for that title.  There is not really an Ant-Man in the bunch.

Of Course, the reason why this is the case is because all of DC’s characters have been owned by Warner Bros. for a while.  They have always had a medium for their films, so they haven’t sold off the rights to their characters like Marvel had to.  Not only does this mean that all of their popular characters are available, it also means that there is zero crossover issues that they will need to overcome as they start making the films.  If they want to throw together a “phase” that focuses on one of the Crisis events, they can, and they don’t have to worry about who they might sub in to take Barry Allen’s place to save the world and die for 30 years, since some other studio owns his film rights.  They own the rights, so he’ll be in the movie. No problem.  They have a whole universe, nay, a multiverse available to them.  No legal barriers to stand in their way.

There are a lot of different directions DC can go too.  Unlike Marvel, not every DC character or title revolves around New York City.  Each Hero has his own distinct city with its own distinct feel to it.  Gotham is very different from Metropolis, which is different from Coastal City or Central City.  Plus, Green Lantern can be his own whole spinoff universe, going throughout the cosmos and involving the other Green Lanterns and the other corps.  It is a limitless supply of backdrops, expanding way beyond just New York City.

Don’t get me wrong, I have at least one major issue with the new DCCU.  Well, maybe a couple of issues, that are really rolled up into one issue:

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There will be no crossover between the DC shows and the DC movies.  In fact they have already announced that the guy playing Flash is not the same actor playing him currently on TV.  They haven’t even announce Green Arrow having any kind of presence in the upcoming films.  That makes me sad.  I have enjoyed the Flash so far, and I love Arrow.  Plus there is also news that TNT maybe picking up a Teen Titans pilot involving Nightwing, which may be existing in the same world as Arrow and Flash.  DC is really putting together a nice little universe on TV, but it will have nothing to do with the movies.  Maybe the TV shows will serve as practice for the movie universe.  Who knows?  But this is the saddest part of the announcement this week.  I would love to see Stephen Amell show up as Green Arrow in one of these films, but I won’t hold my breath.

So what do you all think?  Does DC stand a chance, or will Marvel always rule supreme at the box office?  All I know for sure is that both studios will be getting a lot of money from me over the next 5 years.

How TBBT Ruined The Flash

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Well here we are, on the other side of the much-anticipated premiere of The Flash television series, and after watching the pilot, I would have to say that the CW is the proud mamma of two great super hero titles, and hopefully more to come.  The pilot was great, and a lot of fun for fans of the Flash comics.  I loved that they opened with his signature phrase: “I am the fastest man alive.”  I love that they drew on a lot of the source material.  I love that the series has characters with powers, real super powers.  It’s cool.  I think the actors they got for the main roles were spot on, especially Grant Gustin as Barry Allen/The Flash (despite his former star role on Glee).

I love the Flash’s back story.  His mom gets murdered (spoilers), his dad gets convicted of the crime, despite being innocent (more spoilers) and Barry decides to become a police scientist to prove his dad’s innocence.  Some people witness the murder of their parents and become dark, psychopathic vigilantes, other become cops.  Different strokes for different folks, I suppose.  I like that they incorporated the Yellow blur with the man inside as the real culprit, and now everyone will be talking about who the Reverse Flash is, because there have been many characters who have taken on that name.

There was a lot to like about the pilot, but there was one thing that just ruined it all for me (that might be a little dramatic, but bear with me here).  Maybe it was really two things.  These:

First, you can’t see it super great in this photo, but take a gander at the shirt Cisco Ramon is wearing:

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I couldn’t find a great shot that showed it, but he is wearing a Rock-Paper-Scissors-Lizard-Spock shirt.  A great shout out and nod to the crossover fan base of The Big Bang Theory and The Flash.  I mean, obviously, many of the fans of TBBT (another Warner property) will be fans of any super hero show.  Plus, Cisco is obviously a little geeky, so why would he not enjoy a little Sheldon Cooper  in his free time.  And apparently, he is no casual fan of the show.  Check out these two images:

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Number one, this is cool because I have that shirt.  It also shows that he must be a pretty big fan of TBBT.  But, wait, hold on…How does that work out?  This actually presents a pretty big issue.  Here we are, witnessing the birth of the Flash, in a world where he exists as a real live human being, not just a comic book character.  It is also apparently a world in which TBBT exists as a TV series.  Here’s my issue:

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Apparently, Sheldon Cooper also likes the Flash.  Apparently, he likes him a lot:

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And apparently, he is not the only one in the show who like the Scarlet Speedster:

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This presents a problem.  How can Cisco exist in a world where the Flash doesn’t exist until now, and then as an actual person, when TBBT also exists in that world, as a show with geeks who really like the fictional Flash super hero?  He can’t.  It doesn’t make sense.  I know it is a nice nod to another Warner property, but when you think about, the whole thing falls apart.  If TBBT exists in this world, then the Flash is already a comic book super hero, but he’s not.  Barry Allen is real live person here, so he can’t be the comic book character Sheldon obviously loves.  It doesn’t work.  It can’t.  Barry Allen and Cisco Ramon can’t live in a world where Sheldon Cooper exists, because Sheldon Cooper and TBBT exist in a world where the Flash doesn’t really exist, but in The Flash, the Flash does exist.  See, the whole thing just goes in circles.  The point is, he shouldn’t have the shirt on.  Yes, it’s funny, and there is a lot of crossover there, but a lot of fans of TBBT are like the characters in TBBT, and they would not approve of something like this.  I know Sheldon wouldn’t.

Marvel vs. DC: Small Screen Edition

Fall is just around the corner.  Ok, for all intents and purposes, it’s here.  That means that new TV is on the air, and right now, geeky TV is all the rage.  A big portion of this new geeky TV is a bunch of shows based on material from comics, mostly superheroes.  The two big comics publishers are presenting quite a bit of new material this fall, and a lot of it looks pretty good.  While Marvel seems to own the summer box office, the small screen seems to be up for grabs. Here are the offerings from each company for the Fall:

DC

Arrow

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This may be the best superhero themed show ever.  Notice what I wrote there.  Not just going on right now, or in recent memory, but EVER.  It is well written, well acted and well produced.  When this show premiered a couple of years ago, it took me a couple of weeks to really get into it, but once I was in, I was in.  I like the Oliver Queen/Green Arrow character.  He’s like a grittier, somehow darker version of Batman.  Plus, even though he’s filthy rich, like Bruce Wayne, he seems more relatable.  Plus, the growing supporting cast is pretty good too.  This has a lot going for it, and as it continues to succeed, more money will go into it and it will only get better.  Plus, Ra’s al Ghul. This is worth checking out for sure, and until I see something better, this is the champ of the comic book shows.  Arrow: Season 3 premieres on the CW on October 8.

The Flash

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Want to know if a show is doing well?  One clue is if the studio behind it decides to make a spinoff.  Enter The Flash, featuring a Barry Allen that we meet for the first time in Arrow during Season 2.  This is the second full on super hero show that DC is bringing to the masses on the CW.  It looks to be of the same quality as Arrow, so let’s hope it holds up, and maybe there are more shows coming down the pipe for us, based on more characters in the DC multiverse.  The Flash is about a guy, Barry Allen who gets struck by lightning near some chemicals and this gives him super powers, as he becomes “the fastest man alive.”  I love the Flash character in the comics.  He was always upbeat, positive, a genuinely good guy, and I think this Barry Allen looks the part.  Another interesting thing is that the show introduces us to the term metahuman, which is the DC version of people with super powers. I am excited to see where this new series takes us, and I hope it does well.  The Flash also premieres on the CW on October 8.

Gotham

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Gotham brings us the story of Gotham City and James Gordon before Batman.  It gives us a glimpse of life in the city before Bruce Wayne grew up.  It seems like we are going to get the back stories of some pretty nasty characters and see what life was like for a young Bruce Wayne just after his parents were murdered.  From all of that, I feel like this is basically giving Batman the Smallville treatment.  However, this has been getting rave reviews from critics, and geeks everywhere are anxiously anticipating the premiere of this series.  One major difference between this show and Arrow and the Flash: Don’t expect to see the Dark Knight in costume, similar to what we saw with Smallville.  The show still looks interesting, with plenty of very disturbing and fascinating supporting characters in the Batman universe.  Gotham premieres Monday, September 22 on Fox.

Marvel

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

MARVEL'S AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D.

Agents returns for round 2.  This was a runaway hit last year for Marvel.  Many people wondered how fans would respond when Marvel tried to bring their big screen world to the small screen, and people loved it.  Of course, most of the season was partially building up to Captain America: The Winter Soldier, helping people to get excited for the new film.  In return, the film rewarded the show by destroying the titular organization, S.H.I.E.L.D.  I imagine that this season will deal with how these agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. go on in a post-S.H.I.E.L.D. world.  The biggest draw for this show is the connection to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.  It builds on that hype, but really delivers little in the way of actual super powered people.  Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. season 2 premieres on Tuesday, September 23.

Agent Carter

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Agent Carter from Captain America will also be getting her own series this fall.  Late this fall.  No trailer on this one, and not a lot of information, except that this series will follow the adventures of Agent Carter and Howard Stark.  Fans have been excited about this idea for a while now, so there is a lot of buzz.  The series, though, will not be starting with the rest of the fall bunch of shows.  Instead, it will be premiering during Agents of SHIELD’s mid year break.

Lots to look forward to from the big comics studios.  In addition to the shows listed here, DC’s Constantine will be premiering on NBC this fall, and the productions for Marvel’s NetFlix shows are moving forward.  IT’s too bad that we have to wait for Daredevil and Ironfist on Netflix before we get a Marvel show about actual super heroes.

What do you think?  What are some of the shows you are looking forward to this fall?  Share your thoughts in the comments.

Death in Comics

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One of the big, if not THE biggest, story lines of the Fall this year is the Death of Wolverine in Marvel Comics.  The creators, artists, writers, everybody at Marvel are all saying that this is it for Logan.  He is not coming back, his death will be final, no coming back.  And everyone who has ever read a super hero death storyline just smiles when they hear Marvel say that, because we all know the truth.  We are all sitting here, ready to call “BS” on Marvel.  Yeah, right.  If there is one thing death isn’t in the comics, it’s permanent, at least for heroes.  As a side note, the lovely cover art you see above is a Salt Lake Comic Con exclusive cover for this issue.  There will only be 3000 available, and they will only be available at Salt Lake Comic Con, if you’re interested.

Death is a funny thing in the comics.  We all know that when a hero dies, it is only a matter of time.  I remember being a young lad when Superman “died.”  I was shocked.  He was always my     favorite, and I was shocked to see him go.  I wondered what the world would be like without the Man of Steel in it.  How would it go on?  Even at the age of 10 or 11, I was intrigued to find out.  DC did let this play out for a little while, but eventually, Big Blue was back, better than ever.  And by eventually, I mean it was about a year. Of course, one of the huge benefits for DC was the number of issues they sold of the “Death of Superman.”  This was a pivotal moment in comics.  There had been deaths before.  Some of the more impactful ones would be the death of The Flash, Barry Allen, the death of Robin, Jason Todd, and the death of Phoenix, Jean Grey.  These each had been a big deal, and very meaningful in their respective series, and in the case of the Flash, to the whole DC Multiverse.  Up to this point, though, by and large, the heroes had remained dead. We saw how the world moved on after each of these deaths.  For example, Wally West stepped in to fill the shoes of the Flash, and became a very popular character in his own right.

Killing off Superman was a big deal, though.  This would have greater ramifications than any other super hero would, and where would you find a replacement Superman? You couldn’t.  DC tried with 4 different versions, and none of them would have worked out long-term.  They knew the issue would be huge, and it was, but they also knew it would be huge when he came back.  The Death and Return of Superman basically set up a model for super hero deaths that has been followed again and again.  DC may be a slightly worse offender, but it is by a narrow margin.  Since Superman died we have seen the death and return of Batman, the Green Lantern  (Hal Jordan, a couple of times), and the return of Barry Allen and Jason Todd.  Big Blue set the precedent.  In Marvel, the biggest name to die and come back has been Captain America, not to mention Jean Grey who came back, and then died and came back and then died again (at least I think she is still dead), a trick she must have learned from Charles Xavier who has also died and returned multiple times. We have even seen the return of Bucky Barnes as the Winter Soldier.  Bucky had been dead so long, that it even became a running joke that all the other heroes come back except Bucky.

Death just doesn’t have any permanence in the comic book world for heroes.  This is actually kind of sad, and deprives the fan from a little bit of realism.  I write that with a grain of salt, realizing that we are talking about comics, a world where there is not a lot of realism.  Death happens in real life.  Sometimes it happens to the good guys.  In fact it happens a lot to the good guys.  It would be nice to see a little bit of that in the comics.  See how the world goes on with Batman or Superman.  I was intrigued when Batman died a few years back.  For the first time in a long time, I picked up a Batman issue (it’s true, I don’t read Batman, not at all.  Ask my comic book guy, Greg, at Black Cat Comics, he’ll tell you).  I bought it, because I was intrigued by the idea of Dick Grayson taking over for Bruce Wayne.  It was a story line that had a lot of potential with time, but DC barely gave it a shot.  Batman was back before we knew it.  Bucky filled in for Cap, and it was interesting to read his adventures as Captain America, but soon enough Steve Rogers was back.  I think comic book companies are really missing out on some great opportunities to tell some great stories and allowing us to get to know these characters in some new ways.  But it never really happens.  The hero never stays dead.

The strangest part is how pivotal death is to a lot of characters.  Some characters are dead and have remained dead and never come back.  Uncle Ben and the Waynes are the two best examples.  Uncle Ben’s death was the most important event in the history of Spider-Man.  Without that happening, Peter Parker would not be the hero he is. Period, end of story.  The same thing for Bruce Wayne witnessing the death of his parents.  These characters can never come back because that would change everything too much.  The truth is, look at how much depth they have added to the characters they have affected. That is what a good death could do.  It would add some depth to the characters that are left behind.  IT would also leave the door open for some other characters to step up.

I don’t know if Wolverine is going to stay dead (doubt it), but I hope he does.  His death would mean more if it was permanent.  It might actually matter.  Either way, Marvel will sell a ton of this series.