Marvel's "Luke Cage" Casts Its Misty Knight
Digital Comics, TV
Today marks the 98th anniversary of the birth of Jack Kirby, King of Comics. And all corners of the comics internet are celebrating the contributions of the most legendary artist in the history of the medium (see CBR’s gathering of 98 mind-blowing Kirby images or Comics Should Be Good’s artist tribute for starters).
But the birth of Kirby also marks another strange anniversary for comics historians as 28 years ago today, the artist and his longtime Marve collaborator Stan Lee had one of their very few public arguments about what went in to the creation of the Marvel Universe.
In 1987, Kirby celebrated his 70th birthday with an interview on “Earthwatch” — a cultural program on New York City public radio station WBAI. During the broadcast, hosts Robert Knight, Warren Reece and Max Schmid asked Kirby about a range of fan topics from the origins of the Red Skull and the Cosmic Cube to comics perceived readership in the Golden Age and beyond. But the journalists pulled a somewhat stunning “Gotcha” move on their guest by asking him about the legend of the Marvel Bullpen before inviting Lee on as a caller.
When an annoying, if confused, Dark Knight challenged a baffled, yet patient, Man of Steel last fall in the stop-motion animated short “LEGO Batman vs. Superman,” the confrontation didn’t end well for the Caped Crusader. Not well at all.
Now, nine long months later, Tommy Williamson and BrickNerd Studios have returned with the sequel “LEGO Batman vs. Superman 2: Dawn of Justice Desserts,” which finds the World’s Greatest Detective just as we left him: stuck beneath the overturned Batmobile.
Stan Lee has been immortalized in comics, on television and film, in toys and even in the LEGO Marvel Super Heroes video game, but never actually in LEGO. However, a proposal at LEGO Ideas could change that.
It’s LEGO Stan Lee, a bust of the legendary writer constructed from 649 LEGO bricks. It even includes his signature sunglasses!
Forget Drake vs. Meek Mill, the greatest rap beef of our time is clearly between Stan Lee and Jim Henson.
In the latest installment of “Epic Rap Battles of History,” the co-creator of the Marvel Universe and the father of the Muppets (or at least a couple of guys who look sort of like them) settle old grudges by spitting mad rhymes.
Political cartoons | Cartoonist Ted Rall, who was cut loose last week by the Los Angeles Times after the Los Angeles Police Department cast doubt on a blog post he wrote for the newspaper about being stopped in 2001 for jaywalking, has posted an enhanced version of the audiotape of that incident, which he says backs his version of the story. [aNewDomain]
Creators | Stan Lee waxes philosophical in an interview conducted at Boston Comic Con: “I think people need somebody to look up to as a role model, you know? Just like people need to believe in God, you need to feel there’s someone somewhere who can help you because you’re aware this is not a perfect world.” [Boston Herald]
Marvel movies sure have come a long, long way. We’re currently on the brink of a third incarnation of Spider-Man on the big screen. If things had played out a little differently, however, it could have been the fourth.
Back in the early 1990s, Carolco Pictures came incredibly close to producing a Spider-Man film that was written, directed, and produced by none other than James Cameron. In the end, financial and legal troubles, among other Hollywood hooha, kept the film from seeing the light of day. Fans have known about this obscure piece of comic film trivia for decades, but new slice of nostalgia recently surfaced via Imgur brings us back to a period of “What If…,” courtesy of Stan Lee himself.
In one of Lee’s classic Stan’s Soapbox pieces from the Bullpen Bulletin section that ran in the back of ’90s comics, Spider-Man’s co-creator sings the joys of signing the deals to bring Cameron onto the film. “So you can take this to the bank, Believer,” writes The Man, “SPIDER-MAN is destined to be the biggest, boldest, baaaaadest block-bustin’ bombshell of a super hero action extravaganza ever to hit the screen!” Well, almost anyway. Read the whole thing above.
A Stan Lee cameo has become a secondary source of intrigue in Marvel Comics-based films — when will he show up, what will he be doing and how will fit in with everything else going on? He’s able to dwell in the worlds of the in-house Marvel Studios movies, Sony’s Spider-Man films and 20th Century Fox’s Fantastic Four and X-Men franchises. There have even been fan theories about how he can show up in so many different places.
The UK-based MorphCostumes, who offer a wide variety of skintight superhero bodysuits, have put together an infographic documenting Stan Lee’s cameos in Marvel films, dating back to 1989’s made-for-TV “The Trial of Incredible Hulk” and finishing with “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” released this past May. This follows an earlier infographic from MorphCostumes, looking at the “Murderers of Marvel.”
Because we didn’t love him enough after the incredible-ness that were 21 Jump Street and Magic Mike XXL, Channing Tatum once again proved his National Treasure status at this year’s Comic-Con International in San Diego.
At the 20th Century Fox presentation in Hall H — which CBR covered — moderator Chris Hardwick ended the festivities by bringing out the cast of “X-Men: Apocalypse,” “Fantastic Four” and “Deadpool” in order to take the largest and most awesome superhero selfie ever. As if that caliber of actors weren’t enough, Stan Lee made a surprise appearance and joined them on stage — followed unexpectedly by Channing Tatum as he’ll be playing Gambit in Fox’s upcoming film of the same name.
Then came the moment.
Comics | In advance of a radio show titled “White Men in Capes,” to be broadcast Tuesday, BBC News looks at diversity in comics and finds it lacking; as DC Entertainment Co-Publisher Dan DiDio says, there “doesn’t seem to really be a proper representation of ethnic characters across the entire industry.” He talks about DC’s efforts to bring diversity to its line, and he explains why: “There’s a very hungry audience, excited audience and the reason why we know that exists is because we go to the conventions and we hear from our stores and you hear the make-up of the people shopping in those stores.” [BBC News]
Stan Lee was reportedly rushed to the hospital Sunday, but that certainly didn’t stop the 92-year-old from appearing last night at the Hollywood premiere of Ant-Man.
According to TMZ, Lee called 911 Sunday morning, complaining that he didn’t feel well, and was taken from his Hollywood Hills home to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. A representative for Lee wouldn’t confirm the report, but pointed EW.com to the comics legend’s attendance at the movie premiere.
Manga | A special treat awaits moviegoers who see Boruto: Naruto the Movie in Japanese theaters in August: A special Naruto book that includes both the final chapter of the original Naruto manga and a new one-shot story by Naruto creator Masashi Kishimoto. [Anime News Network]
Creators | Sophie Campbell discusses working on Jem and the Holograms and the reactions she received earlier this year after coming out as trans: “I didn’t know how people would react, my family in particular of course, and I was worried about being fired from Jem because I was scared that IDW or Hasbro would feel like this wasn’t what they signed up for… It’s only been a couple months, but so far it’s been the opposite of what I was expecting. My family has been super great even though it’s tough for them, and as far as work goes, I’ve actually gotten more offers than I’ve ever had, and my publishers have been more than amazing.” [The Advocate]
After 70 “Stan’s Rants” videos, fans have a pretty good idea of what Stan Lee’s desk looks like, but what about the rest of his office?
In the latest edition of its “Spaces” feature, Adweek takes a tour of the 92-year-old writer’s POW! Entertainment office in Beverly Hills, where it spotlights family photos, a 1980 Spider-Man pinball machine, Marvel figures and collectibles, art from fans, and painting by Steve Kaufman.
Lee is also interviewed by Biography.com, where he’s asked, among other things, about the origin of his signature sunglasses.
Creators | The Southern Poverty Law Center, which compiles an annual list of hate groups operating in the United States, said it will add artist Bosch Fawstin to its 2016 report. He drew the winning entry in the Prophet Muhammad contest in Garland, Texas, where two gunmen were killed Sunday in a foiled attack. The American Freedom Defense Initiative, which sponsored the competition, is already included on the list. Heidi Beirich of the SPLC described Fawstin’s work as “virulently ugly” and “hate views.” The artist, who was raised as a Muslim but is now an outspoken critic of Islam, responded, “So they want to put a cartoonist on there who doesn’t act out violently? Go for it.” Fawstin, creator of the “anti-jihad superhero” Pigman, also vowed to continue his work despite fears for his safety: “I understand the threat, but I’m not going to be cowed by it. I still intend to go up there and I still intend to speak out.” [Reuters]
Disney and Marvel have reached a settlement with a Pennsylvania theater in a copyright- and trademark-infringement case that unexpectedly turned into another front in their legal battle with Stan Lee Media.
Law360 reports American Music Theatre has agreed to stop using Spider-Man and other Disney properties without permission, bringing to an end a September 2013 lawsuit over the musical revue Broadway: Now and Forever. If the Lancaster, Pennsylvania-based theater violates the permanent injunction and consent order filed Thursday, it must pay $25,000 in actual or liquidated damages per work, plus attorneys’ fees.
“I didn’t get to be the world’s greatest cameo actor overnight,” Stan Lee explains. “It took years of hard work.”
And in this new comedy short from Audi, the legendary comics creator turned master of cameo acting passes his knowledge of a new generation, which includes Michael Rooker, Kevin Smith, Tara Reid and Jason Mewes.