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OLD-TIME RADIO AND COMICS HEROES BURST BACK ONTO THE SCENE!
03/28/12 @ 4:15 pm EST
Source: USA TODAY | Comments (0) | E-mail Article | Add a Comment

Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? (Hint: The guy dresses up in a cape and runs around at night. And it's not Batman.)

The Shadow still knows — as do Flash Gordon, the Lone Ranger, the Green Hornet and other heroes of 1930s and '40s radio shows, pulp magazines and movie serials.

These good guys are making a comeback, though mainly in comics and feature-length movies. Next month, The Shadow receives a comics reboot courtesy of Dynamite Entertainment, which also publishes ongoing series starring Flash Gordon and Green Hornet plus a new title with pulp hero The Spider that's due in May.

On the big screen, a masked Seth Rogen stung bad guys in last year's The Green Hornet. And in The Lone Ranger, in production for release in 2013, Armie Hammer rides tall as the title cowboy with Johnny Depp as his sidekick Tonto. Baby Boomers grew up watching the Clayton Moore TV series in the '50s, although the saga began as a 1933 radio show in Detroit.

Though these characters may not be as well known as today's comic-book superheroes or the Star Wars and Harry Potter clans, they were the bee's knees for a generation that was decades away from the Internet and iPods.

Before Batman, there was the alter ego Lamont Cranston donning the shadowy mask and hat while haunting radio waves as The Shadow, voiced by Orson Welles in the late '30s.

And before Superman and Captain America there was Flash Gordon, an all-American space adventurer who tussled with planetary tyrant Ming the Merciless in sci-fi comic strips by Alex Raymond and serial films starring Buster Crabbe.

"The '20s and '30s are seen as a very romantic age, with the criminal underworld of urban America and high adventure of exotic foreign locations providing a bit of an edge," says Garth Ennis, who is writing the new Shadow comic. "The reality, I'm sure, would have been mostly a lot more mundane and occasionally quite grim."

He's crafting The Shadow as a dangerous champion of law and order with a flair for the dramatic, and he is embracing one of the vigilante's oldest and most famous traits: his habit of laughing as he consigns his enemies to their doom.

"I decided to be fairly sparing with it," Ennis says. "If he started howling every time he threw a punch or fired a shot, it would get old fast. So I decided to preserve the laugh for moments of deep, dark, extreme humor."

His take on The Shadow comic is a bloody affair, where the mysterious figure dispatches bad guys with violent aplomb. More than 70 years ago, though, audiences had to visualize with their imagination what was going on during the radio-show exploits.

The popularity of the old Shadow and Green Hornet radio shows and their ilk in their heyday is best compared to programs children flock to today, such as Hannah Montana and Dora the Explorer, says Martin Grams Jr., a radio-show historian and author.

Back then, kids and adults would read books, pulps and comics because they were a cheap form of entertainment, and radio was an even bigger medium because it was free.

Some adaptations tank

While movies measure success with box-office receipts, commercial sponsors would gauge ratings of radio shows based on the number of giveaway premiums offered during the commercial breaks — such as various Lone Ranger rings and badges. They were then used to persuade sponsors to stick around because of a large listener base.

It wasn't just kids, either. Housebound and disabled people "who couldn't go visit their local movie theater had the opportunity to enjoy action and adventure with the turn of their dial," Grams says.

"The business of pop culture was defined during the 1930s and 1940s when movie producers snatched up the screen rights to popular radio programs and produced motion pictures, serials and film shorts based on the properties."

Since then, movie studios, TV networks and comics publishers have attempted adaptations of those characters, with varying results.

The Lone Ranger TV series began in 1949, ran eight seasons and defined the character for many. Flash Gordon sped off to space with live-action and animated shows, and a 1980 film became a cult classic with Sam Jones clad in a white shirt bearing the word "Flash."

But two more recent movies, The Shadow (1994) with Alec Baldwin and the 1996 Billy Zane vehicle The Phantom (based on the comic strip from the '30s), were not exactly heroic at the box office. And Disney's new big-budget John Carter, based on the Edgar Rice Burroughs pulp sci-fi hero, has thus far tanked.

"My theory is that modern audiences have a hard time accepting un-ironic heroism unless it's presented just right," says Eric Trautmann, writer of Dynamite's Flash Gordon: Zeitgeist series. (A devotee of the era, Trautmann has a Maltese Falcon on his desk, a statue of Humphrey Bogart as Sam Spade, a Buck Rogers blaster and a replica 1930s radio.)

He concedes that pulp is difficult to write because it requires a certain innocence. Nazis show up in his series, but when they're the evil-doers du jour, modern audiences can't help but think of the Holocaust, "a sort of demise of innocence for the Western world." That makes it a lot harder to take the proceedings seriously.

'We're all geeks in a way'

"The obvious inclination is to keep things a little more self-referential and cartoony, tongue firmly in cheek," Trautmann says, "and that kind of thing really works against the story, the character, and readers' and viewers' embracing the tale."

Those characters of yesteryear, however, remain important in the history of pop-culture heroes, says comic-book artist Alex Ross, one of the creative spearheads of Dynamite's pulp series.

"Seeing how a character like The Shadow would influence every other flamboyant costumed hero in history was very interesting to me," he says. "A load of the earliest superhero fashions came from the artists swiping from Alex Raymond's Flash Gordon."

Heroic fiction draws from a lot of the same wells. Without John Carter in 1917, Trautmann feels we probably don't get Flash Gordon in 1934, a quintessentially American protagonist whose "unflappable 'can do' attitude and unshakable optimism would resonate in almost any era." Without Flash, there's no Luke Skywalker or Han Solo in Star Wars, and without that, we don't get Avatar.

"Even Star Trek owes a debt to period literature —Captain Kirk as Horatio Hornblower in space," Trautmann says. "Heroic fiction shares those archetypes and themes, so that influence is probably so ingrained now that a modern practitioner might not even be aware of what influenced the sources he or she is drawing inspiration from."

Affection for heroic pulp specifically — as with old-school sci-fi, fantasy and mystery stories — seems to be cyclical, Trautmann says. But the resurgence of these characters is also being helped by an overall nostalgia for the early- to mid-20th century, from Boardwalk Empire to Mad Men.

"It's been a rough decade or two," he says. "Looking back on what seems to be a simpler, less complicated time is certainly appealing."

Curiosity and a drive to seek knowledge are probably the main reasons people like to revisit historic pop culture, Grams says.

"We're all geeks in a way, trying to intake all the information we can on a comic-book character or movie, then digest, then recollect to friends to show how much more we know than they do."

The historian enjoys seeing kids introduced to heroes that were a seminal part of their grandparents' lives. He says it's a good bet they know tons more about The Hunger Games and Twilight than old Shadow magazine tales, and have no idea of the existence of Lone Ranger radio shows of yore.

"In my experience," Ennis says, "these characters tend to be pretty strong to begin with: They go through periods of revival, then slump due to overindulgence, then lie dormant, then undergo the next revival. But they always come back."

And, Grams notes, "the oldies are still the goodies."
MORE NEWS...
STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI TO WRAP POST-PRODUCTION SOON
06/23/17 @ 8:25 am EST
Source: ComicBook | Categories: Star Wars | Comments (0) | E-mail Article | Add a Comment


Star-Wars-The-Last-Jedi-Force-Awakens

Star Wars has taken over headlines this week thanks to the Han Solo movie’s director shake-ups, but the series has some good news to share now. The franchise’s eighth episode is making a comeback as new reports indicate The Last Jedi will wrap post-production soon.

The Talkhouse Podcast had a chance to sit down with director Rian Johnson recently to talk about his vision for The Last Jedi. Johnson and filmmaker Lily Amirpour told the organization post-production on the next Star Wars film will end in August.

In regards to Star Wars, the wrap date for post-production isn’t too surprising. The franchise has enough clout and money to it to give directors like Johnson leeway with cutting the film. Star Wars movies have plenty of check-ups they must go through before they can hit theaters, and an early post-production wrap will give Lucasfilm enough time to prep the feature.
LUCASFILM & MARVEL INTRODUCE BRAND NEW JEDI
06/23/17 @ 8:17 am EST
Source: ComicBook | Categories: Star Wars | Comments (0) | E-mail Article | Add a Comment


Thanks to the recent surge of Star Wars comics, we've seen fan-favorite characters go on missions we never knew about and have met all-new characters that have developed devoted followings. One of those new characters was just introduced in Darth Vader #2, a Jedi by the name of Kirak Infil’a, with the stage being set for an epic confrontation between Sith and Jedi.

According to the issue's solicitation description:

"The most fearsome villain of all time returns with an all-new series! When Anakin Skywalker fell, both to the pull of the dark side and to the blade of Obi-Wan Kenobi, he rose back up, more machine than man. Having lost everything that was once dear to him, the former chosen one must take his first steps into a darker world…as Darth Vader, Dark Lord of the Sith! Join Vader as he learns a new way – the way of Darth Sidious and his newly formed Empire…the way of the dark side."

The series is set after Revenge of the Sith, with Vader having to prove himself as a worthy adversary and weapon of the Sith.

Kirak Infil’a star wars darth vader
TRANSFORMERS PRODUCER SAYS FRANCHISE'S FUTURE ISN'T MAPPED OUT YET
06/23/17 @ 8:10 am EST
Source: ComicBook | Categories: Transformers | Comments (0) | E-mail Article | Add a Comment


Transformers: The Last Knight Review

Many conflicting reports about the future of the Transformers franchise have become public in the lead-up to the release of the latest film, with Michael Bay reportedly not returning for a sixth film, while also claiming that the writers' room has the concepts to at least 14 more films. We know that we'll be getting a spin-off film based on the Transformer Bumblebee that will be set in the '80s, but other spin-offs and sequels will most likely be dependent on the success of The Last Knight.

Screen Rant recently asked producer Lorenzo Di Bonaventura about whether or not future films will detail the remaining secrets about the history of the robots, replying, "No, not necessarily. We have some ideas but that may or may not play out in the next movie."

"We’re really waiting to see how the audience responds to this movie and what elements they really love because one of the things we found was – as filmmakers – that there was great freedom suddenly to break sort of the simplistic Decepticons vs. Autobots," he added. "And now, Arthurian legend, now Knights, and now humans have a role, and that was really exciting for us so I think we want to keep pushing out. So I don’t think you can anticipate necessarily that we’ll do a movie in sequence."

The franchise has earned roughly $3.7 billion worldwide, with the latest film most likely being another success, despite it being projected to only take in around $60 million in its opening five days.
RON HOWARD COMMENTS ON TAKING OVER THE HAN SOLO MOVIE
06/23/17 @ 12:50 pm EST
Source: ComicBook | Categories: Star Wars | Comments (0) | E-mail Article | Add a Comment


Han-Solo-Ron-Howard

Ron Howard, a longtime friend to George Lucas and Academy Award-winning director of Willow and Apollo 13, has been named the director of the as-yet-untitled Han Solo stand-alone Star Wars film.

Now that the internet has had a few hours to compose itself and stop yelling, Howard took to Twitter to issue a brief statement on the job.

"I'm beyond grateful to add my voice to the Star Wars Universe after being a fan since 5/25/77," Howard tweeted. "I hope to honor the great work already done & help deliver on the promise of a Han Solo film."

Howard notably starred alongside Harrison Ford, the original Han Solo, in American Graffiti from Star Wars creator/director George Lucas.

The untitled Han Solo movie will be in theaters May 25, 2018.
AQUAMAN REPORTEDLY CASTS YOUNG ARTHUR CURRY ACTOR
06/23/17 @ 12:47 pm EST
Source: ComicBook | Categories: DC | Comments (0) | E-mail Article | Add a Comment


kaan-guldur-aquaman

Filming for Aquaman is well underway in the Land Down Under and now — thanks to reported casting news — we may have a better look at the storyline involved in the movie.

With Otis Jai Dhanji previously being announced as being a part of the production as a 13-year-old Arthur Curry, it has surfaced the movie has cast child actor Kaan Guldur to portray the character at an even younger age.

According to Twitter user @AquamanShrine, Guldur will be playing a version of Arthur Curry that is nine years old. Guldur is currently best known for his work in the short film Red Ink and in an upcoming role in The Lego Ninjago Movie.

Having two separate child actors playing younger versions of Jason Momoa’s titular character hints at a lengthier origin for the King of Atlantis. Of note, each of the DC Extended Universe’s three solo films has shown us a younger version of the main character. In Man of Steel, we saw a younger Clark Kent (Cooper Timberline/Dylan Sprayberry) as he grew up in Smallville while a young Diana Prince (Lilly Aspell/Emily Carey) was seen on Themyscira in Wonder Woman.
CHADWICK BOSEMAN REVEALS HIS REACTION TO THE BLACK PANTHER TRAILER
06/23/17 @ 12:43 pm EST
Source: ComicBook | Categories: Marvel | Comments (0) | E-mail Article | Add a Comment


Black-Panther-Chadwick-Boseman

Being a part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe seems to be as exciting as fans have thought. Chadwick Boseman first got to experience the MCU's hype when the actor brought the Black Panther in the franchise last year. Now, the star has revealed his reaction to the trailer for his Black Panther movie, and fans will find it totally relatable.



Recently, Boseman appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live! to talk about his current projects. The actor's Marvel films got their fair share of coverage as Boseman was asked about Black Panther. When questioned about the standalone's sleek trailer, Boseman said he had to turn his phone off when the video went live to stay sane.

“It was so exciting,” Boseman said. “I literally, for like three minutes, was like, ‘oh my gosh.’ Just staring at the screen and then I cut my phone off because it was too much stimulation.”

Black Panther may not house the hero’s first outing, but it does show fans a much-anticipated side of the hero. Captain America: Civil War saw T’Challa assume the Black Panther mantle for good after his father was murdered. The film then ended with T’Challa returning to Wakanda with Captain America’s team in tow. Black Panther will pick up after the events of Civil War and follow T’Challa as he comes to terms with his new kingly status.
TEEN TITANS FILMING LOCATION REVEALED
06/23/17 @ 12:40 pm EST
Source: ComicBook | Categories: DC | Comments (0) | E-mail Article | Add a Comment




Teen-Titans-8-Cover-Header

Fans were ecstatic to find out that DC has been working on a live-action Teen Titans property, only for the hype to turn up to eleven when it was revealed that fan-favorites Geoff Johns, Greg Berlanti, and Akiva Goldsman would be producing the show.

Earlier this week, casting information surfaced showing that we’ll be seeing characters like Nightwing, Beast Boy, Raven, and Starfire in the series. Now, we know that the series will begin filming in Toronto with a tentative September start date.

My Entertainment World updated their listing for Titans to begin filming in Toronto, Canada on September 25, 2017 — a move that contradicts earlier reports that the show would begin production in Atlanta on the same day.
MARVEL REDEFINES "616"
06/23/17 @ 12:38 pm EST
Source: ComicBook | Categories: Marvel | Comments (0) | E-mail Article | Add a Comment


For the longest time, Earth-616 was to Marvel as Earth-1 is the DC. It’s the prime earth where the main continuity of the multiverse takes place.

Now that there’s just been one world within the Marvel comicsverse, the crew at the House of Ideas needed a new place to use the 616. They’ve now found out how to use the number within the pages of Brian Michael Bendis’ Invincible Iron Man #8released this week.

As Ironheart, Nick Fury, and crew gathered at a terrorist attack at the Smithsonian, a villain attacked the scene, leaving Fury to declare it as a 616.

“This is Nick Fury with S.H.I.E.L.D. Command at the Smithsonian,” the S.H.I.E.L.D. leader said as he looked on towards the destruction. “We have a 616, meta-human attack at the bombing location.”

He added that a full battalion of Hulkbusters was needed on location, in addition to placing the entire city of lockdown until further notice.

You heard that right, Marvel fans. Now within Marvel canon, 616 is now the codename for what seems to be an attack that takes place immediately after a terrorist attack that happened in the same location.
EXPECT A “RETURN TO PLANET HULK” WITH MARVEL LEGACY
06/23/17 @ 12:29 pm EST
Source: Bleeding Cool | Categories: Marvel | Comments (0) | E-mail Article | Add a Comment


The upcoming movie Thor: Ragnarok out in November is expected to include a number of aspects of the Planet Hulk storyline. That story by Greg Pak, Carlo Pagulayan and Aaron Lopresti ran in The Incredible Hulk comic book from 2006 to 2007, in which the Hulk was exiled from Earth, to become a gladiator on a foreign world, before rallying a cause to bring down the state and then take his revenge to Earth alongside new allies for its sequel, World War Hulk.

The movie is believed to involve Asgardian goddess and daughter of Loki, Hela, beating Thor in a battle for Asgard, and destroying Mjolnir in the process. And then seeing Thor banished to Sakaar, that barbaric planet ruled by the Grandmaster, and including Valkyrie and the Hulk amongst its gladiators. Thor is then forced into becoming a gladiator, which leads to his rather messy face and drastic haircut.

And, as the movie is released in November, it looks like the Hulk comic book will reflect that with a new storyline “Return To The Planet Of The Hulk” as part of Marvel Legacy. While Marvel Comics folk don’t get access to the movies, but they do get to see the trailers along with the rest of us.

Bleeding Cool is reporting that the Hulk series will be moving to #708 which would indicate a November release, and an announcement at San Diego Comic-Con next month.

It wouldn’t be the first time we’ve seen a return to Planet Hulk of course, one of the Secret Wars spinoff titles took that name as well ...

return planet hulk
JURASSIC WORLD SEQUEL TITLE & POSTER REVEALED
06/23/17 @ 12:19 pm EST
Source: Newsarama | Categories: MIsc | Comments (0) | E-mail Article | Add a Comment


The sequel to Jurassic World now has a title and a poster. The film will be called Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom.

Jurassic World set a box office record for being the first film to earn $500 million globally in a single weekend. It went on to gross $1.6 billion worldwide.

The poster for Fallen Kingdom calls back to the original Jurassic Park with the infamous line "Life finds a way."

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is due out in theaters June 22, 2018.

 
RECENT NEWS

Latest News
Updated: 06/23/17 @ 8:25 am

1. STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI TO WRAP POST-PRODUCTION SOON

2. LUCASFILM & MARVEL INTRODUCE BRAND NEW JEDI

3. TRANSFORMERS PRODUCER SAYS FRANCHISE'S FUTURE ISN'T MAPPED OUT YET

4. RON HOWARD COMMENTS ON TAKING OVER THE HAN SOLO MOVIE

5. AQUAMAN REPORTEDLY CASTS YOUNG ARTHUR CURRY ACTOR



6. CHADWICK BOSEMAN REVEALS HIS REACTION TO THE BLACK PANTHER TRAILER

7. TEEN TITANS FILMING LOCATION REVEALED

8. MARVEL REDEFINES "616"

9. EXPECT A “RETURN TO PLANET HULK” WITH MARVEL LEGACY

10. JURASSIC WORLD SEQUEL TITLE & POSTER REVEALED



11. 1ST LOOK AT A VERY DIFFERENT STAR TREK: DISCOVERY TRANSPORTER ROOM … BUT NOT THE TRANSPORTER ROOM

12. BATMAN AND HARLEY QUINN GETS ONE-NIGHT-ONLY THEATRICAL RELEASE

13. BLACK LIGHTNING'S PILOT HASN'T FILMED YET

14. NEW SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING CLIP SEES PETER CRASH A LAME PARTY

15. AQUAMAN OFFICIALLY CASTS MICHAEL BEACH



16. MARVEL REVEALS THE IDENTITY OF THE NEW THOR

17. PREACHER DEBUTS SAINT OF KILLERS COVER HOMAGE POSTER FOR SEASON 2

18. MARVEL REVEALS THOR CHEATED ON JANE FOSTER

19. AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR VISITS DOCTOR STRANGE'S SANCTUM SANCTORUM

20. FEAR THE WALKING DEAD RATINGS JUMP WITH EXTENDED RATINGS



21. WONDER WOMAN OVERTAKES MAN OF STEEL AT THE BOX OFFICE

22. EVERY HERO! EVERY TITLE! EVERY STORY! TOMORROW, MARVEL LEGACY CHANGES THE COMIC BOOK INDUSTRY

23. SWEET CHRISTMAS! THE DEFENDERS #1 RETURNS FOR SECOND PRINTING

24. 'WONDER WOMAN' BECOMING TOP-GROSSING LIVE-ACTION FILM DIRECTED BY A WOMAN

25. RON HOWARD STEPS IN TO DIRECT HAN SOLO MOVIE



26. TITAN COMICS 'THE BEAUTIFUL DEATH'

27. MORE HARLEY QUINN FOR 25TH ANNIVERSARY

28. 'KINGSMAN' MOVES TO IMAGE

29. 'MAGES OF MYSTRALIA' BRINGS MAGIC TO COMICS

30. FIGHTING AMERICAN RETURNING ON JOE SIMON'S BIRTHDAY



31. FIRST LOOK: ANOTHER STAR TREK: DISCOVERY CAPTAIN & GLIMPSE OF THE BRIDGE

32. THE WALKING DEAD INTRODUCES BIZARRE NEW CHARACTER ON ISSUE #171 COVER

33. SPIDER-MAN HOMECOMING SEQUEL WILL FEATURE A DIFFERENT MARVEL STUDIOS SUPERHERO

34. IRON MAN, DOCTOR STRANGE, AND HULK TOGETHER IN AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR SET PHOTO

35. 'GAME OF THRONES' SEASON 7 CHARACTER POSTERS



36. JASON CLARKE IN TALKS TO JOIN DAMIEN CHAZELLE'S NEIL ARMSTRONG BIOPIC 'FIRST MAN'

37. 'GAME OF THRONES' SEASON 7 TRAILER: SUMMER IS HERE, AND SO IS WINTER

38. HOW SONY LEARNED TO CEDE CONTROL TO MARVEL ON 'SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING'

39. LORD AND MILLER LEAVING HAN SOLO MAY HAVE SOMETHING TO DO WITH ... THE FLASH?

40. THE MASTER DANCES WITH HERSELF IN NEW TRAILER FOR DOCTOR WHO: WORLD ENOUGH AND TIME



41. MARVEL COMICS’ TRIBUTE TO RICH BUCKLER, IN THEIR COMIC BOOKS TODAY

42. THE MAYOR OF SYRACUSE DECLARES THIS SATURDAY TO OFFICIALLY BE NEAL ADAMS DAY

43. 'TRANSFORMERS: THE LAST KNIGHT' KICKS OFF TUESDAY NIGHT WITH $5.5M

44. 'KIRBY: KING OF COMICS' ANNIVERSARY EDITION SOFTCOVER

45. NEW KID-FRIENDLY FANTASTIC FOUR FILM REBOOT REPORTEDLY IN THE WORKS



46. TORCHWOOD: THE CULLING COMING FROM TITAN COMICS

47. ROB LIEFELD TO REVIVE DAVE COCKRUM'S THE FUTURIANS

48. RON HOWARD TOP CHOICE TO TAKE OVER HAN SOLO FILM?

49. 'WATCHMEN' TV SERIES FROM DAMON LINDELOF IN THE WORKS AT HBO

50. 'AVATAR' SEQUELS UPDATE: PRODUCTION "OFFICIALLY" BEGINS IN SEPTEMBER ON SAGA'S STANDALONES - CINEEUROPE



 

Latest News
Updated: 06/23/17 @ 8:25 am

1. STAR WARS: THE LAST JEDI TO WRAP POST-PRODUCTION SOON

2. LUCASFILM & MARVEL INTRODUCE BRAND NEW JEDI

3. TRANSFORMERS PRODUCER SAYS FRANCHISE'S FUTURE ISN'T MAPPED OUT YET

4. RON HOWARD COMMENTS ON TAKING OVER THE HAN SOLO MOVIE

5. AQUAMAN REPORTEDLY CASTS YOUNG ARTHUR CURRY ACTOR



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