Sunday, July 29, 2012

Sentinel #1 Review


The problem with comics today is you can't really find a fun comic. It's always about being dark, realistic, violent and over sexualized. Just look at the New 52. Sure there are all ages comics, but with them you get the stigma of "it's bad because it's for kids." So when a fun comic like Blue Beetle and the comic I'm looking at today is released it sell's poorly and get's canceled. This is a shame since they can be really good but no one cares. I think it's about time this changed so that's why I'm going to look at Sentinel #1.

The story of Sentinel is about Juston Seyfert. An average high school outcast, who lives with his Dad and Brother in Wisconsin. His dad run's a Junkyard that they live next to. They don't really have a lot of money so he has to find his own way to entertain himself. Which mostly consists of him making things out of junk parts such as battle robots. One day he finds a control chip amongst the junk. The next day while eating lunch in a class room he meet's a girl named Jesse who look's like she's wearing a Moogle hat. That's kinda random.

Later that day while driving around with his friend in the forest they find a crater in the middle of nowhere, they wonder what caused it, and we see a giant robotic hand behind a tree. Even later, him and his brother are about fight with there robots when Juston's robot drives away by itself after he put the Control Chip in it. The comic ends with the Control Chip being revealed to belong to a Sentinel from the X-Men comics, who is using Juston's robot to rebuild itself.

This comic is actually pretty good. It has good art, and I like the characters. However it hasn't hit it's stride yet, and it will get better as it goes. This is a much better read in the Trade or if you have all the issues because it does feel really short. Overall it's not bad, but it hasn't become great just yet. I definitely recommend the series. 

Rating: 3/5

Monday, July 23, 2012

"The Dark Knight Rises" First Thoughts

So I was able to see The Dark Knight Rises early. I actually thought it was pretty good. I can see where some of the Bad Reviews are coming from but I still really enjoyed it. It wasn't as good as Batman Begins or The Dark Knight but it's still a good movie. First off Christian Bale still plays a good Batman, even though he still does the voice.

Tom Hardy does a great job as Bane, it's the closest we've ever gotten to the Bane from the comics. I don't understand why all these people have such a hard time understanding what he's saying. I could understand him, but that might be because I didn't see it in IMAX. Also the reason I said closest to the comic is that a certain plot twist at the end kind of diminishes his character to the point he nearly becomes the Bane from Batman and Robin.

Anne Hathaway does a good job as Selina Kyle, and Cillian Murphy does a good job as Scarecrow but once again he doesn't get much screen time and he doesn't even appear as Scarecrow. Who I was really surprised by was John Blake played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who I actually liked a lot. He's essentially Tim Drake with a bit of Terry McGinnis thrown in. I was also surprised how many elements were taken from Knightfall, which was a good thing. I'm not sure what else to say but go see it, and form your own opinions.

Rating: 4/5

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Batman Week Ends: "Return to the Batcave" First Thoughts

Batman Week comes to a close. The Dark Knight Rises is out, and originally I was planning to go see it today but due to some scheduling issues I'm not going to be able to see in until Tuesday. However I was able to find a substitute. A movie I've been looking for, for about a year or two. That movie is is the 60's Batman show reunion entitled "Return to the Batcave: The Misadventures of Adam and Burt."

Since I'm a big fan of the 60's show and Silver Age comics, I really wanted to see this. It was great. It pay's tribute to the show, and it looks behind the scenes at what working on the show was like in a very fun way. It's very self aware, and just an overall fun movie. 

Seeing all these actors again are great, especially Frank Gorshin and Julie Newmar. The actors that played the younger versions of the actors did a really good job especially the ones who played Adam and Burt. Overall this was a really enjoyable movie, and I recommend it to any fan of the 60's Batman TV Show or I would even say go see it if your a big Batman fan.

Rating: 4/5

Friday, July 20, 2012

Batman Week: Batman #300 Review


So the Dark Knight Rises comes out today. It was hard to find a comic that was appropriate to review today, but I decided to review a kind of a what if story. This takes place in the future and it is entitled The Last Batman Story. So let's check this out.

This comic is about Batman and Robin teaming up one last time in order to stop a secret organization that goes by Spectrum. The Spectrum has a problem with Wayne Industry's and has been causing problems. Robin sends a police girl named Annie Morgan in to investigate, but she was injured causing Robin to take this personally.They find The Spectrum's hideout, and interrupt a meeting. They beat some of the henchmen, and make there way to the leaders.

It turn's out two people are in control of the Group, Infrared and Ultraviolet. Infrared is distracted by Batman which set's off a chain reaction that causes there protective rings to explode. The comic ends with Bruce revealing he's going to retire from being Batman, and run for Governor. He also plan's to ask the woman he loves to marry him. Dick asks when he'll know for sure, and Bruce tells him he'll have the answers tomorrow.

This comic isn't that bad, but it does have some flaws. The story just doesn't seem epic enough to earn the title The Last Batman Story. The story telling is also very Silver-Age, which isn't a bad thing it just subtracts from some of the Drama of the comic. The villains aren't too interesting, and the Spectrum seems more suited to be a Green Lantern villain then a Batman one. However the art is great and there is some good character stuff between Bruce and Dick. Overall it was enjoyable, and I recommend it. But I'm sure this isn't the last Batman Story, he always has a habit of Returning.

Rating: 3/5

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Batman Week: Over the Edge Review


So this week I reviewed a Batman novel and a Batman movie, so now before I do my comic review I'm going to review an episode of Batman the Animated Series or The New Batman Adventures as it is known in this part of the shows history. So why did I pick this episode? Well it's one of my favorites and it does have Bane in it.

While trying to take down Scarecrow, Batgirl is kill after being thrown off of a building. She lands on Commissioner Gordon's car, and he takes of her mask revealing her to be his daughter Barbra. The Commissioner blames Batman, and starts to go after him. He finds out Batman's identity by looking at Barbra's computer. The police storm Wayne Manor, and Batman barely makes it out. Both Nightwing and Alfred are arrested, and Batman tells Robin to turn himself in.

The Commissioner is under investigation since his daughter was Batgirl and his connection to Batman over the years. Due to this he is force to step down as Commissioner, and as such he starts to resort to very extreme measures. He uses his Daughters funeral as bait, and hires Bane to defeat Batman. Bane win's but when the Commissioner says he want's to take Batman to jail Bane turn's on him and throws him off the building they are on.

The Commissioner manages to hold on to a ledge, while Batman subdues Bane. Batman tries to save the Commissioner but Bane uses what strength he has left to throw the Bat-signal at the both of them, causing them both to fall. It is then revealed that this was all Barbra having a dream sequence induced by the Scarecrows Fear Gas. Barbra then goes to tell her Dad that she's Batgirl, but before she can him he tells her that she is capable of making her own decisions implying that he already knew that she was Batgirl.

This episode is great, this is probably my second favorite episode in the whole series after Heart of Ice. The way it starts is a bit confusing, but it catches the viewer up pretty quickly. The first time watching this it might not be hard to figure out the twist ending but I still think it's effective. Some of the characters act wildly out of character but that might be due to the fact it's a dream sequence. Overall I definitely recommend this to anyone who likes Batman.

Rating: 4/5

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Batman Week: Batman (1989) Review


As you may know The Dark Knight Rises is coming out in two days. To get myself in the right mind set I've been watching some of older movies as well as the other two Christopher Nolan movies. While watching them I decided to review one of them. I skipped over the obvious choices, being "Batman Returns" and "Batman and Robin." I eventually decided to review the very first movie in the Burton/Schumacher Batman series.

This is the one most people really like. I decided to do this because this is wildly regarded as one of if not the best Batman movie, and I have a very different opinion then most people. This is probably due to the fact I don't have that big of a nostalgic connection to this movie. The two Batman movies I watched the most were Batman Returns and Batman Forever. As such I can review this with a more critical mind. So let's begin.

The story of this movie isn't too deep or eventful. Most of the movie is the Joker trying to get in the spotlight instead of Batman, and trying to have sex with Vicki Vale. The Joker hates Batman because if it wasn't for him his skin wouldn't of got bleached. After some shenanigans and two scenes of the Joker dancing to the music of Prince, Batman uses the Batplane to try to stop the Joker from using his Joker venom to kill everyone. Joker destroys the plane, and it crashes outside a Cathedral. Batman chases the Joker up the Cathedral, in order to save Vicki Vale. They get to the roof, Batman and Vicki were holding on for dear life when the Joker tries to escape by helicopter. Batman prevents him from leaving by wrapping his leg to a gargoyle and the movie end with Joker falling to his death after the Gargoyle comes lose and weights him down.

So let's get the good out of the way first. The cinematography and mood is really good. Tim Burton does a great job with this. It captures the mood of Batman even more then the Nolan movies. The costume's for Batman and Joker are great. The musical score by Danny Elfman is amazing, and memorable. Also Billy Dee Williams does a great job as Harvey Dent which makes me wish they kept him around to be Two-Face in Batman Forever, and Jack Nicholson is fun as the Joker but his characterization is a bit off.

Which brings me to some of the bad points. The Joker doesn't really act insane, his sanity seems to be more bent then broken. Sure he's a complete Psychopath but he doesn't really seem that different then when he was Jack Napier, except he laughs a lot more and act's a bit more demented.Then there's the fact we know who he is before he became the Joker, but in the comics it's more of a mystery. Plus why would any one work for him when they know at any time he could ask for there gun and shoot them.

Then we get to my biggest problem, Batman kill's in this movie. That goes completely against his character, yeah I know he killed in the original comics but that character has evolved over the years, and now Batman doesn't kill. He's also very inconsistent about it. He try's to save Jack Napier but he also drops a guy down the Cathedral and blows up a factory full of people. Batman just act's really out of character. I don't blame Michael Keaton, but this Bruce Wayne is a social invert to the point people don't even know what he looks like. People would suspect him, especially when he sleeps with Vicki Vale, and after she fall's asleep he goes and sleeps like a bat.

This is why I chose to review this. A good movie versus a good adaptation, because this is not a good adaptation. But is it a good movie? The answer is yes and no. It has plot holes sure, and they had to work on the story a bit but It's still an enjoyable movie. The cinematography is great, and despite getting the characters wrong it still retains the feel of the comics. Which is a very important thing. Plus if it wasn't for this we probably would never of got Batman the Animated series. I recommend this if your a fan of Batman but never read a lot of the comics. This movie will probably be much worse for you if you have a working knowledge of them.

Rating: 3/5

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Batman Week: Knightfall Novelization Review and First Thoughts


In order to prepare myself for "The Dark Knight Rises" I decided to finally read the novelization of the Batman Knightfall story arc from the 90's, that I've had for around 3 years now. I haven't read alot of the original comics so I'm going to review it on it's own merits. Why didn't I buy the comic you may be asking? Well I don't have the money or the time to read 2 or 3 Giant Trade Paperbacks. Anyway, Knightfall is the story that first introduced Bane.

The story is essentially Bane comes to America to find and break Batman. He eventually discovers that Batman is Bruce Wayne, and goes to fight him. This ends with Bruce getting his back broke. Bruce then get's Azrael to become Batman. Eventually Azrael beats Bane while Bruce is try's to save his Doctor, Shondra Kinsolving, and Tim Drake's father, Jake Drake.
All these pictures are from the comic. By the way this costume is awesome.

Azrael starts to go over board, locking everyone out of the batcave, turning on his allies, killing villains, and eventually just goes completely crazy. Bruce is eventually healed by Shondra who was revealed to be a meta-human, however it came at a price. After hearing about what's happening with Azrael he decides he must stopped, and goes to Lady Shiva to get back into shape. Him and Azrael fight. Bruce wins by using his head, and the tells Azrael to leave.

This is pretty good. Some could say the story is about the main characters alter egos. Bruce, Bane, and even Tim. But no one more then Azrael, who already has a split personality due to the effects of the "System." During this he gains a third personality. At first his just trying to emulate Bruce. Eventually most of the bad parts of his other personality's combine with his Batman one causing him to go insane.

There are some bad parts. Some of the fights like the fight between Azrael and Bane as well as the final fight between Azrael and Batman feel like they were over to quickly. The whole thing seems a bit rushed and condensed. Which is to be expected since this is a 350 page novelization of a whole year or so's worth of comics.

Despite not reading much of the Knightfall story arc I think it's safe to assume they changed a few things in the novel. I know for a fact that Nightwing was in the original story but he seems to be written out of this, and I think they changed the way Batman beats Azrael at the end. Overall it's not a bad book, and I recommend it to any Batman fan.

Rating: 4/5

Monday, July 16, 2012

Comic Panel of the Week: Batman Week Begins

Only a couple of days till The Dark Knight Rises comes out. So I thought this would be appropriate.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Megaman Megamix Volume 3 Review


Today were going to check out something a little different. I'm going to review another manga. This time it's something a little bit more familiar. If don't know much about Megaman you should check out my review of issue one and two of the Megaman series by Archie comics. So let's get started.

This comic takes place during and a bit after Megaman 6, where Dr. Wily disguises himself as the host of the "First Annual Robot Master Tournament" in order to get his hands on some of the greatest Robots in the world to use to take over the world. He reprograms them and Megaman goes to stop him. After defeating him, he says he's changed like always. Megaman starts to walk away when Wily attacks him with another robot which Megaman destroys with one shot.

Wily fall's out of his robot, and starts to beg for forgiveness again. However Megaman put's his gun to Wily's head, and shoots him. It is revealed to be a dummy, and the real Wily get's away. Later Dr.Light and Roll are worried about Megaman since they haven heard from him for sixteen hours. They are interrupted by police robots lead by Ringman from Megaman 4. It turns out Megaman is attacking the city, and has declared war on humans.

Since Dr. Light programed him he is arrested for questioning along with Roll and all the other Robot Masters made by Dr. Light. Megaman is wandering around in his civilian form when he runs into Protoman. They fight and Protoman leaves after realizing something. Roll and the other Robot Master escape from jail thanks to some help from Ringman, and confront Megaman.

They ask him what's wrong but he says that nothing's wrong he just realized what the Humans did to the world. They have no choice but to fight him but he takes them down with out damaging them. Cutman doesn't believe he's the real Megaman, and it turns out he's right when the real Megaman shows up and reveals that the imposter is just a Copy Robot. The Copy Robot says he's the real Megaman and they fight. But the fight ends when the Copy Robot starts to overload and finds the Dr. Wily logo in his collar.

The Copy robot is angered by this since he thought he was the real one, and shoots at Megaman. However Roll takes the blast, and Cutman tries to destroy him. He is saved by Shadowman who takes him to a warehouse, and tells him to go find his own destiny. Then Bass attacks the city looking for a fight, and the Copy Robot decides to stall him until the real Megaman arrives.

Bass realizes that he's a fake, and put's him out of commission. Megaman arrives, and try's to save the Copy Robot. Bass tries to attack Megaman but the Copy Robot get's in the way and overloads causing him to explode saving Megaman in the process. Shadowman watches near by and calls Protoman a coward because he could of saved the Copy Robot. The comic ends with Megaman and Roll feeling sad about the Copy Robot while Protoman walks away into a crowd thinking that in his last moments the Copy Robot really was Megaman.

This manga is really good. It has good art, great character development, and an amazing story. My summary can't do it justice. It really makes you feel bad for the characters, even the ones that do horrible things. Overall I recommend this. If you think the Archie series is good, it's the Ruby-Spears cartoon compared to Megaman Megamix. 

Rating: 5/5

Friday, July 6, 2012

X-Force #4 Review


Today I was going to review a Spider-Man comic due to the release of The Amazing Spider-Man, but since I reviewed a Spider-Man comic two weeks ago I decided not to. However instead I chose a 90's X-men comic guest staring Spider-Man. But not just any 90's X-men comic, today were looking at X-Force. So let's get started.

The comic is mostly about Spider-Man and most of the X-Force trying to fight the Juggernaut after him and another villain named Black Tom Cassidy blew up one of the Twin Towers of the World Trade center. Right, in hindsight that's kind of in bad taste. I mean it's not the writers fault, how could they of known what would happened. But still. Anyway they fight the Juggernaut, and it goes as well as you'd expect it to go.
Anatomy? What's that?

Meanwhile Cable is trying to find Cassidy. When he does they start to fight. However the fight is cut short when Cassidy falls down an elevator shaft but manages to hold on. He asks Cable to help him but Cable tells him he won't save him, and shoots his hand causing him to fall. However Cassidy is saved by Deadpool because Deadpool's boss, Mr.Tolliver, has Cassidy on his hit list.

Back with the group, Siryn manage to remove The Juggernaut's helmet despite it being mystically connected to his armor. Cable arrives, and tells the Juggernaut he is going to kill him but before he can do anything Deadpool arrives, and  teleports the Juggernaut away. Bridge comes, and try's to arrest Cable but him and the team teleport away as well leaving Spider-Man behind. The comic ends with them wondering why Bridge is after them.

This comic is not very good. It's has really bad art, and atrocious panel layout. You see back in the 90's it was popular to have a two page spread that in order to read it you would have to turn the book on it side. This however is completely on it's side, which is weird and unnatural. The one time I thought something like this was used effectively was in Batman #5.

The characters don't really have any development, and Spider-Man really had no purpose to be here since all he does is fight Juggernaut and say funny lines. The only story we do get is from a narration at the beginning and from Deadpool. Who as always is the best part of X-Force. Overall this isn't really good, and I can't recommend it to any one.

Rating: 1/5

Thursday, July 5, 2012

"The Amazing Spider-Man" First Thoughts

So I just got back from The Amazing Spider-Man, and I really liked it. The action was good and almost all the actors were great. Especially Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone. They have good chemistry and it's going to be really sad if Gwen Stacy is killed off in the next movie. Rhys Ifans was also good as Curt Connors, but there was some inner monologues between his and the Lizards personalitys where I expected Willem Dafoe to appear in a mirror and start screaming "Avenge Me!"

This being a reboot people are naturally going to compare it to the other 3 Spider-Man movies. I really don't think this is fair since your comparing something that is completely different. Then you get the people who grew up with the other movies and think it bad because it's not what they grew up with. Like the people who grew up with the Tim Burton Batman Movies hating the Nolan movies even though they are closer to the source material.

Despite growing up with the other movies I like this one more as a Spider-Man Movie. Even though they were good, well except for the third one, the Sam Raimi Movie's never really felt like the Spider-Man comics or shows. I'm not saying I don't like them I just think this is much more closer to the source material, but does that make it a better movie? In this case I think it does. It feels much more on track, and the humor doesn't feel as forced.

Overall I think this is a good movie, and you should check It out. I'm really impressed between this, The Avengers, and Superman Vs. The Elite the Superhero movies are going much better this year then last year. All it will take is The Dark Knights Rises to be good, and we will have four great Superhero movies in one year.

Rating: 4/5