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Get a New Look at Batman: The Long Halloween, Part One

The centerpiece of Batman: The Long Halloween, Part One revolves around the triumvirate of crimefighters – Batman/Bruce Wayne, Police Captain James Gordon, and District Attorney Harvey Dent – as they try to solve the mystery of the Holiday Killer.

Inspired by the iconic mid-1990s DC story from Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale, Batman: The Long Halloween, Part One begins as a brutal murder on Halloween prompts Gotham’s young vigilante, the Batman, to form a pact with the city’s only two uncorrupt lawmen – Police Captain James Gordan and District Attorney Harvey Dent – in order to take down The Roman, head of the notorious and powerful Falcone Crime Family. But when more deaths occur on Thanksgiving and Christmas, it becomes clear that instead of ordinary gang violence, they’re also dealing with a serial killer – the identity of whom, with each conflicting clue, grows harder to discern. Few cases have ever tested the wits of the World’s Greatest Detective like the mystery behind the Holiday Killer.

Produced by Warner Bros. Animation and DC, the feature-length animated Batman: The Long Halloween, Part One will be distributed by Warner Bros. Home Entertainment on Digital and Blu-ray on June 22, 2021.

TV Review: Jupiter’s Legacy S1E5 What’s the Use?

Jupiter's Legacy "What's the Use?"

What’s the Use?” feels like it’s getting Jupiter’s Legacy back on track in some ways. The episode circles back to the death of the fake Blackstar. You know, the rather important plot point from the first episode that’s been ignored up to this point. That includes Brandon who has been awol for the most part up to this point.

In the past, Sheldon is doing what he can do to gather the individuals he needs from his vision. It features some ok sequences and moments though overall the plotline feels very dragged out. There are some interesting moments where individuals question Sheldon’s sanity or outright don’t trust him. Who is chosen and what the pitch is all make for some interesting viewing but overall it could have been sped up and condensed.

As a whole, the series is dragging out the origin of the heroes. I can see what they’re doing, timing their gaining their powers with the end of the season, delivering a dual narrative. But, its a mystery that’s interesting and has some impact on the present. Getting to that point and then showing its impact would make for a more compelling season and also have the two narratives play in together with their themes.

In the present we finally get Blackstar’s death back in focus. The mystery deepens as hints as to who behind the attack is hinted at. There’s also Utopian wanting to speak to Skyfox and needing Hutch to do that. There’s also Chloe and her romance. It’s all the various threads dancing around each other and works in some ways but also feels a bit too tied together in ways as well. Not everyone has to be connected with each other and not every plot has to tie into each other. There’s a point it becomes too silly.

“What’s the Use?” isn’t a bad episode but it also creates a world that’s a bit too small in some ways. Characters have relationships that feel a bit random and other directions would be far better ways to handle things. Still, the series feels like it’s bringing things together and getting to the point.

Overall Rating: 7.5

TV Review: Jupiter’s Legacy S1E4 All the Devils Are Here

Jupiter's Legacy "All The Devils Are Here"

All The Devils Are Here” keeps it simple in the episode exploring Chloe’s world as well as Sheldon’s pursuit. Jupiter’s Legacy delivers a stronger episode with a character out of control and one that feels like he’s losing it.

“All The Devils Are Here” keeps things focused on these two storylines delivering one of the stronger episodes. It does some solid work tying in Chloe’s story with some other things. But, the main point is we get a better sense of her. She’s plagued by the shadow of her father. She also is ostracized by some for not being a part of the other superheroes. We also get a sense she’s struggling because she thinks her social life exists because of who she is and what powers she has. We understand her better.

Sheldon, back in the past, is on a mission to figure out his visions. That takes him on a journey where he discovers a little more about what he’s being driven to do. It’s a little deus ex machina and a series of events than discoveries but it moves things along nice.

Josh Duhamel stands out for his confusion attempting to piece everything together. Elena Kampouris as Chloe also stands out as she spirals.

“All The Devils Are Here” is another example that when the show keeps things simple and focused, there’s something there. When it attempts to deliver action filled superhero battles, the series stumbles. The characters, and their clashing, is where things are interesting. Here’s hoping the series figures that out.

Overall Rating: 7.5

TV Review: Jupiter’s Legacy S1E3 Painting the Clouds With Sunshine

Jupiter's Legacy "The Clouds With Sunshine"

Jupiter’s Legacy‘s third episode, “The Clouds With Sunshine“, is an intriguing one making a bit of a detour from the first two. The episode begins to focus on delivering some more solid villains and a larger meta-story and does so in a mix of ways.

A large chunk of the episode focuses on Sheldon’s breakdown and getting the “origin” of the heroes rolling. We’re introduced to George Hutchence, a wealthy friend who’s a bad take on Ozymandias from Watchmen. Matt Lanter plays the character with a playboy arrogance, part Bruce Wayne and part douche. Sheldon is getting messages from beyond the grave of a mission he must take to a mysterious island while George begins to put together some of what Sheldon claims he’s seeing.

It’s a slow origin and playing out the basics of the series. As a plotline it feels dragged out and plodding, a bit of a clash with the more modern time and sequences. With it and the more modern times, we have dual stories in what feels like dual series.

In modern times, we meet Hutch. Part of a crew, they’re on a mission to steal something for a powered individual. While Hutch himself doesn’t have powers, he does have a device that allows him to teleport. It’s maybe the one cool special effect on the show and looks the least cheesy.

Once again, it’s the special fx where the episode starts to fall apart. A battle between Chloe and our new villains has a look that feels like a cheap 90s superhero show on The CW. There’s a silliness to it all in both execution and the look. The series stumbles when it goes down that path creating a distraction from its more intriguing aspects.

One of those intriguing aspects is that theft and Hutch and what’s hinted at towards the end. The series continues to do best when it keeps things simple. Unfortunately it hasn’t found its balance between its super and grounded aspects. “The Clouds With Sunshine” is an ok episode, better than the debut, but it still has its eye-rolling moments.

Overall Rating: 7.5

TV Review: Jupiter’s Legacy S1E2 Paper and Stone

Jupiter's Legacy

With the death of the fake Blackstar, Utopian and the heroes are in the focus. The public’s support of Brandon’s action throws Utopian into a difficult spot to decide what to do. In the past, we learn more about the stock market crash and its impact on the Sampson’s delivering a deeper picture as to who Sheldon Sampson is as a person. “Paper and Stone” pulls things back for Jupiter’s Legacy focusing on the characters. It’s also a strong episode than the debut.

Bouncing between Sheldon’s past and present we learn more about the man, with both focused on his dealing with death and loss. It’s juxtaposed in a way with Brandon and his reaction to the death of his friends. It’s an interesting comparison and follow up from the debut’s focus on Brandon’s attempt to step in his father’s superhero shoes. In a way, Brandon surpasses his father delivering a speech that’s heartfelt and touching. It shows he really cares and feels responsible for his actions and inactions. You can feel the weight on his shoulders.

“Paper and Stone” is an interesting episode. We get to see Brandon and Sheldon and how they both feel responsibility for the actions of others. Sheldon in the past for the action of his father. Brandon for the death of his fellow heroes. The episode also continues to draw the line between Sheldon’s beliefs in not killing and Brandon crossing that line. The times are changing in both periods and everyone must deal with that.

The episode also kicks off the Indiana Jones like origin of its original heroes. Like the superhero moments of the present day, it’s a bit cheesy. But, it sets things up and gets that plot rolling.

“Paper and Stone” is a much better episode than the debut. It steps away from the tights and debates the morality of everything that has happened and what it means to be a hero. That’s where the comic was strongest (from what I remember) and it seems the show is too. It moves away from bad special-fx allow its actors to shine. Here’s hoping for more of that to come.

Overall Rating: 8.0

TV Review: Jupiter’s Legacy S1E1 By Dawn’s Early Light

Jupiter's Legacy

The highly anticipated Netflix and Millarworld series Jupiter’s Legacy has arrived and the result is a bit of a mixed bag. The debut, “Dawn’s Early Light”, sets things up nicely but also delivers the cheese with special effects and action that feels a bit outdated and stale.

Bouncing between two eras, Jupiter’s Legacy tells the tale of the world’s superheroes through multiple generations. As the title hints, it’s about legacy, both that of the original heroes and their children. Based on the comic series from Mark Millar and Frank Quitely, the television series feels like it does a decent job of adapting the original material. It’s been a while since I read the comic but the show hits the themes I remember. It’s a show about old vs. new, legacy vs. modern times.

Josh Duhamel is the center of the show as Sheldon Sampson aka The Utopian. Having grown up in the early 1900s he’s a man out of time in a way. He holds traditional ideals, likes simpler things, and holds altruistic views. He has that “hero” sense that we think of in the simplest ways. And that makes things complicated for him. He attempts to hold those ideals and impart them to the next generation of heroes including his son Brandon, aka Paragon, and daughter Chloe.

Brandon, played by Andrew Horton, is a son who is in the shadow of his father. He’s focused on his legacy of stepping into his father’s boots and become the ideal that others look up to. Chloe, played by Elena Kampouris, on the other hand, wants nothing to do with it all, preferring to model.

The conflict and the root of the show is good. It sets things up well introducing us to the key players and the conflict to come. Where it stumbles are special effects that look a bit cheesy. Fights are against clear green screen with a weird transition from sets to clear soundstage. The movements of characters feel stiff and unnatural. The at times gruesome results looks like bad makeup and dummies. The costumes at times make the actors feel stiff like they’re literally restricted by their outfits. For as good as things are elsewhere, the superhero aspects fall short.

Duhamel steals the show in the debut. He plays a man out of time well and as the center of a dysfunctional family struggling with how to raise his children, he does well. This is a moment for him to really show we’ve missed out as him as a hero. And he pulls it off. “Dawn’s Early Light” overall though, feels like it still needs polish and to shift its focus from its clear weaknesses.

Overall Rating: 7.0

The Jupiter’s Legacy Trailer is Here

No legacy lives forever. The first generation of superheroes have kept the world safe for nearly a century. Now their children must continue their legendary ideals. Jupiter’s Legacy is streaming only on Netflix on May 7th, 2021.

The show is based on the comic book series from Mark Millar and Frank Quitely.

Jupiter’s Legacy, the comic, was published by Image and debuted in 2013. The series is about the conflict between generations of superheroes. A group of aging superheroes known as the Union used the powers they gained in 1932 to better mankind. Their children must deal with living up to their parent’s legacy. The series ran for 10 issues.

Discover Jupiter’s Legacy during WonderCon@Home this Friday!

For the first time ever, Mark Millar (Wanted, Kingsman, Kick-Ass) brings the full cast of the new Netflix series, Jupiter’s Legacy together to talk about the epic superhero saga coming to Netflix on May 7. Based on the graphic novels by Mark Millar and Frank Quitely, Jupiter’s Legacy is an epic superhero drama that spans decades and navigates the complex dynamics of family, power, and loyalty. The panel will include Josh Duhamel, Leslie Bibb, Ben Daniels, Mike Wade, Matt Lanter, Elena Kampouris, Andrew Horton, and Ian Quinlan.

The video stream will premiere on March 26, 2021 at 12:00 pm (GMT-07:00) Pacific Time (US & Canada)

After nearly a century of keeping mankind safe, the world’s first generation of superheroes must look to their children to continue the legacy. But tensions rise as the young superheroes, hungry to prove their worth, struggle to live up to their parents’ legendary public reputations — and exacting personal standards. Based on the graphic novels by Mark Millar and Frank Quitely, Jupiter’s Legacy is an epic superhero drama that spans decades and navigates the complex dynamics of family, power, and loyalty. From executive producers, Mark Millar, Frank Quitely, Lorenzo Di Bonaventura, Dan McDermott, Steven S. DeKnight, James Middleton, Sang Kyu Kim. Jupiter’s Legacy stars Josh Duhamel, Leslie Bibb, Ben Daniels, Elena Kampouris, Andrew Horton, Mike Wade, Matt Lanter, and Ian Quinlan.

Jupiter's Legacy WonderCon

Around the Tubes

Daredevil #1

It’s new comic book day! What’s everyone getting? What are you excited for? Sound off in the comments below! While you think about that and wait for shops to open, here’s some comic news and reviews from around the web in our morning roundup.

Pride – First Lesbian Detective Classic Is Becoming a Graphic Novel! – This sounds interesting.

ICv2 – Phil Boyle Argued ‘Something Has to Change’ in the Direct Market — Will It? – What do you all think?

Newsarama – Josh Duhamel and Leslie Bibb Lead Netflix’s Jupiter’s Legacy Cast – This should be a really interesting series.

The Beat – A Year of Free Comics: The Racial Contract in America by Mike Dawson – Free comics!

Reviews

The Beat – Bloom
Talking Comics –
Daredevil #1
CBR –
Female Furies #1

Movie Review: Transformers: The Last Knight

Before I dive into things, I want to say, I’ve really enjoyed Michael Bay‘s first Transformers film with the subsequent three each being a bit worse for wear. None of it is high brow action but each film has its own charm in their own way. So, going into Transformers: The Last Knight I expected much of the same, a film that I could turn my brain off and enjoy and maybe be a little surprised with a tease of the Hasbro extended universe. Almost 2.5 hours later I was angry and wanted my money back. I saw the movie for free at a press screening. I still wanted my money back.

The gist of the story is confusing and all over the place smashing together numerous conceps we’ve seen in the comics and animated series, all of which were done better there. The story basically has Optimus floating in space where he comes across Cybertron and learns it is a dead planet. It can survive but to do so it must suck the energy from Earth. On Earth, Transformers are landing more and more each day seeking refuge from the destroyed Cybertron. We’re never fully explained what happened or why they’re fleeing but everyone is getting the hell out of dodge. And, the people of Earth aren’t fans of that. They’ve formed a new defense force to stop the Transformer threat, hunting them and their collaborators down. Throw in some weird history involving the Knights of the Round Table and you’ve got a story that has too many ideas and not enough focus.

What’s clear early on in the film that I’m not their target audience. Transformers: The Last Knight is aimed for the kids and that’s quite evident from the young kids who kick off the movie to the various character recruited including baby Transformers (what now!?) and new ones that make the stereotypes of the last few films look outright progressive. Everything about this film screams poorly thought out and focused on one goal, to sell shit.

Part of that “poorly thought out” is the lack of focus. The comedy that has existed in previous films is more front and center with a greater spin on purile humor. Instead of Bumblebee urinating on someone, we instead have Grimlock eating a car being scolded and slobber flying all over (and when did green liquid become such a thing!?).

But the biggest shame of it all, I didn’t care about any of it. Megatron’s henchmen are so bad and I was so annoyed by their existence that I thought their being dispatched was a mercy killing for the audience. Plot lines are started and stopped with details dropped all the time. Grimlock and the Dinobots begin a battle then the scene shifts and we don’t hear about them for the rest of the film. Megatron heads to England but we don’t see him until the last segment of the film, his travels ignored. The big reveal about Earth is brought up getting fans excited but is then dropped until the end teasing us Transformers 6. A medalion searches for the right wearer and a Transformer has it but it’s never explained why that Transformer has it or where it came from. Character randomly change outfits in between scenes. The ending that just leaves things in a way that makes what’s to come baffling. I could go on and on about the failures of the film.

Bay’s entire film is one “gag” scene setting up the next with a plot loosley added to create a narrative that makes absolutely no sense. It also has no real vision either. There’s ample opportunity to tease G.I. Joe, ROM, and even M.A.S.K. to create some excitement and set things up to come in the anticipated Hasbro connected movie universe. At least that would have been something. Instead, every opportunity is squandered.

The actors too seem to phone it in. Mark Wahlberg seems both annoyed at what he’s doing and in to it all. Anthony Hopkins… I have no idea what Bay has on the actor to do what he did. Josh Duhamel returns… Laura Haddock plays a British Megan Fox. The 16 year old Isabela Moner is sexed up to creepy levels that left me the viewer uncomfortable. About the only entertainment is Jerrod Carmichael who pops in and out of it all as to serve as a prop for the next “gag” or to deliver some humorous line. The actors who got to provide their voices were the lucky ones as they don’t have to have their faces associated with this film, just sullying their voices instead.

I feel like the entire film can be summed up by a line delivered by the talented Tony Hale whose character is “JPL Engineer.” He seriously states, “I believe in science.” That’s quality writing there.

The movie is bad in almost every way. The writing. The action. The humor. The length. I struggle to find any redeeming quality other than the fact it exists to be made fun of.

With so many other quality films in the theater right now, there’s little reason to see this one. This is one of the worst films I’ve seen in my life. That’s not an exageration. I was angry when I left the theater. If this is a sign of things to come, please don’t! I can’t recommend the movie at all. Spend your money and time elsewhere.

Overall Rating: 1.0

 

Almost American