Smoking Alien Productions has debuted the rough cut of Joker Rising, a fan film billed as “the dark and gritty story of the early days of the Joker and how he became what we know him as today.”
Clocking in at about 1 hour and 20 minutes, the film draws inspiration from director Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy, recasting familiar Gotham City villains like Killer Croc, The Penguin and The Riddler in a crime drama that’s light on costumes and masks. The filmmakers say they’re considering using Joker Rising as the foundation for a “Gotham crime trilogy,” with other members of the Dark Knight’s rogues gallery receiving the same dark treatment.
Most fans who make the annual pilgrimage to Comic-Con International return with some creator signatures or sketches, a few exclusive releases and maybe a case of the con crud. However, Timmy Madere isn’t most fans.
According to The Verge, the New Orleans resident got drunk during the 2009 convention, stumbled into a nearby tattoo parlor, and walked out with the Green Lantern emblem affixed in indelible ink to the middle finger of his right hand. Since then, he’s returned to Comic-Con, and to Nothing Sacred Tattoo, each year to get another permanent memento of his trip.
This year he got two tattoos: a rendition of the Jerry Robinson-drawn Joker playing card, and the Superman Cyborg symbol, which join The Flash’s lightning bolt, the Black Adam’s lighting bolt, a Bizarro symbol, the black Superman emblem, and another Joker playing card. He’s still shooting for an enormous Starro on his back.”It’s weird because comics were the things that inspired me, that helped shape me as a kid I guess, and I ended up getting a bunch of villain tattoos,” Madere tells the website. “They have the coolest symbols! Everybody’s got a Batman or a Superman. No one ever gets the alternative.”
See more photos on The Verge.
An event like Comic-con International draws more than 100,000 people, and because of its popularity, certain groups will take advantage of the large crowds to have their voices heard. Aside from the artistic endeavors, pop-culture marketing and general excitement, during Comic-con, the streets of San Diego also became a platform for special-interest groups.
Mistaken for Pee-wee Herman, Doctor Who cosplayer encounters fundamentalists
I’m not going to lie: When I first saw the protest signs at Comic-Con, I thought they were a joke — some sort of bad-taste marketing scheme that would unveil itself as part of a B-movie. I was here when the Westboro Baptist Church protested a couple of years back; this wasn’t them. But alas, it’s another religious fundamentalists group wanting attention.
I wasn’t going to give them what they sought, but then the man with the bullhorn called a Doctor Who cosplayer Peew-ee Herman.
Here I am, like so many of you fine, wonderful people, relaxing at home instead of walking among the majestic masses of Comic-Con International in San Diego. Comic Book Resources and Robot 6 are keeping we homebodies abreast of all the news from this year’s mega-super-hyper event, so it’s kind of nice to be able to sit in a comfortable chair while still keeping informed and not having to pay $9 for a burrito.
Sure, it’d be nice to be there, wouldn’t it? To stand in line and take your chance at a microphone to tell the House of Ideas your opinion, ask questions of your favorite creative teams and get attention from the editorial team? Good news! That’s what social media can do for you! We live in an amazing time where a tweet to your favorite artist could be replied to with casual familiarity or a Tumblr post could get you a sneak peek at exclusive artwork. Marvel Executive Editor Tom Brevoort has a Formspring account (now moved to Tumblr here) so you can ask him any question at any time of night. The people who produce comics are surprisingly at the hands of their public, which for Marvel, isn’t that new of an idea.
Creators | Dark Horse announced that legendary Lone Wolf and Cub writer Kazuo Koike will be its guest of honor at Comic-Con International in San Diego, where he’ll sign July 18-19 at the publisher’s booth (#2615). In 2014, Dark Horse will debut New Lone Wolf and Club, the 11-volume series by Koike and Hideki Mori (original artist Goseki Kojima passed away in 2000) that picks up where the initial saga ended. [Dark Horse]
Awards | The Judging Panel for the British Comic Awards has been announced. This panel will choose the final winners from a shortlist sent to them by the Judging Committee, which screens nominations from the public. [Forbidden Planet]
Commentary | Steve Morris pens a thoughtful essay on cost versus content in comics and what exactly you are paying for with your $2.99 (or, more frequently these days, $3.99). [The Beat]
Beginning in early October, Ohio drivers finally will be able to display Superman license plates on their cars.
It certainly hasn’t been easy. The campaign for the specialty plate commemorating the creation of the Man of Steel in 1932 by Cleveland teenagers Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster was launched in 2011 by the Siegel & Shuster Society, but ran into a couple of snags: first, objections by DC Comics and Warner Bros. to the proposed slogan “Birthplace of Superman” — he was born on Krypton, they insist — and then, more formidably, the twists and turns of the legislative process.
After a bill for the Superman plates failed to pass on its own, State Rep. Bill Patmon in April inserted the legislation into the state budget, which the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports passed last week.
Friday was “Smallville Day” in Hutchinson, Kansas, as the city changed its name for 24 hours to pay tribute to Superman’s hometown. The Hutchinson News, however, honored another name that’s synonymous with Superman, as the newspaper changed its name to The Daily Planet: Smallville Edition for the day. Clark Kent, Lois Lane, Perry White and Jimmy Olsen all receive credits in the paper, while several past “Supermen” get their photos on the front page (poor Brandon Routh once again gets the shaft).
On that same day, Superman joined the inventor of basketball, 1970s rock band Kansas and the 1st Kansas Colored Infantry Regiment as the 2013 class of the Kansas Hall of Fame. Experience Hutch details some of the other activities that occurred on Smallville Day and notes it’s been good for tourism.
“The Smallville push has already brought international visitors to Hutchinson, in anticipation of it happening. It will bring other visitors who want to experience Smallville as well. It’s not for everyone, as most tourism is not. But it’s important to a segment of the population and their money is as good as everyone else’s,” the website writes.
Check out the front of “The Daily Planet” after the jump.
“This old version of To Kill a Mockingbird where Atticus kills a rabid dog isn’t *my* Atticus”
– Max Robinson, commenting on fan complaints about Man of Steel
I’ll try to keep this as non-spoilery for Man of Steel as possible, but if you haven’t seen it yet and don’t want to know anything about it, you may want to skip this.
There’s been a lot of discussion the past week about certain choices Superman makes in Man of Steel and whether those are things that character would/should do. Mark Waid describes being so upset by Superman’s actions that he stood up and yelled in the theater. In that review, the writer talks about “the essential part of Superman that got lost in Man of Steel.” And while I agree with what Waid describes as essential, not everyone does. In fact, some folks – like Robinson – question whether readers have the right to make those kinds of statements about someone else’s characters.
The comics scene descended on the Los Angeles Zoo & Botanical Gardens June 1-2 for the annual Comic Jungle event. Zoo animals received super-powered descriptors, while visitors mingled with comic artists, retailers, art societies and costumed heroes.
All attendees received a free copy of the Bug’s Life book Flik the Inventor as they were led through an array of newly labeled zoo residents. Some animals were described as having superpowers, such as flight, night vision and super-strength: Elephants were designated as super-hearers, while seals had the power to breathe underwater. Aquaman would be so proud!
Free events were plentiful, including a live art demo by artist David Colman at the Giraffe Enclosure, and visitors could pose for photos with Iron Man, Captain America, Spider-Man, Cobra Commander and the 501st Legion Star Wars fan organization.
However, there were also plenty of guests in costume, including an excellent Incredibles family, and a wee Captain America sporting a cape (see photos of both, below).
With the popularity of Hawkeye –both the Clint Barton version, starring in his own stellar comic and various Avengers titles, and the Kate Bishop version, currently appearing in that same stellar comic and the snappy Young Avengers — it’s not surprising that Hawkeye cosplayers are taking aim at conventions around the world.
If you’re wanting to sport the gear of the younger, female Hawkeye, but aren’t sure where to get started, here’s a Tumblr by a devoted Kate Bishop cosplayer that should tell you everything you need to know. It’s appropriately titled “Gosh I Love Arrows,” and I think she goes above and beyond in the creation of a set of trick arrows based on David Aja’s illustrations from issue #3.
Conventions | Motor City Comic Con founder Michael Goldman has apologized to fans for the long lines they had to endure to get into the event on Saturday, writing in a message on Facebook, “We never expected 18,000+ people to attend that day, which was the same amount of people we had over the entire three days last year. We were literally hit with a ‘Humanity Bomb’ and were not prepared for the sheer number of people attending, even with a large increase in our staff.” More than 30,000 people attended over the course of three days, with attendees reportedly waiting for up to two hours on Saturday just to get into the parking lot, and then another one to four hours to get in the doors. Golden said he is already working on avoiding the same problem next year. [Facebook]
Retailing | Brian Berlin of New World Comics in Oklahoma City is offering free comics and appearances by costumed characters for children left hospitalized or homeless by the tornadoes that struck Oklahoma this week. [Nerdage]
It’s been, oh, about six months since the last “fake geek girls” flare-up, but no matter when the next argument erupts, WeLoveFine.com has you covered.
Showcased in the T-shirt collection curated by writer Kelly Sue DeConnick are two designs made especially for (in her words) “Male-Type-Guy-Dudes.”
“Look. Here’s the deal: you’re not fooling anyone. We know you’re not Geek Girls. (Your unsightly stubble and Adam’s apples give you away.),” DeConnick writes. “It’s okay. We understand. Being a Geek Girl is a pretty fabulous thing. We get it and love you for your aspiration. But the thing is, you’re not a Geek Girl … because you’re a guy. So quit pretending and learn to love yourself for who you are.”
According to the Asbury Park Press, Brick and Britta Wenzel of Lavallette didn’t have flood insurance for their seven properties — among them, a restaurant, gift store and ice cream parlor — which received $850,000 worth of damage in the October storm. In its aftermath, they rented an unfurnished apartment, applied for a disaster loan, and then began taking inventory of their belongings.
That’s when Brick remembered the nearly two-dozen boxes of old comic books left by his father, who passed away in 2005. Named for Brick Bradford, star of the classic sci-fi comic strip, Brick Wenzel began researching the 1,200-comic collection, which he discovered is worth nearly $1 million.
So the Wenzels turned to ComicConnect.com, which is auctioning more than 400 of the comics through May 16. Among the highlights are Young Allies #1-2, All-Star Comics #18, Mystery in Space #1, Donald Duck Four Color #9 and Action Comics #34.
You won’t find any Brick Bradford comics, however; the Wenzels are keeping those.
After a period of screenings at festivals and conventions, the Judge Dredd fan film Judge Minty has finally been released in full online. Packed with Easter eggs for long-term 2000AD fans, it proves that these days it would be entirely feasible to produce an authentic and faithful version of the futuristic lawman on a small-screen budget. As much as I enjoyed last year’s Dredd 3D, it’s hard not to watch this short and list the things that this production did better. For starters, this budget effort manages to properly get the Lawmaster bike, a street judge’s preferred form of transport, something the Stallone and Urban films got wrong in their different ways.