Soft-Boiled Egg and Tomato Toast

This open-faced sandwich is crazy simple, because in-season tomatoes need no extra help.

Lasers Could Make Computers 1 Million Times Faster

Pulses of light from infrared lasers can speed up computer operations by a factor of 1 million, and may have opened the door to room-temperature quantum computing.

Earth’s Magnetic Field Is Drifting Westward, and Nobody Knows Why

Weird, slow-moving waves in the planet's core could explain the mysterious drifting.

Watch Orbital ATK Launch a Cargo Ship for NASA Early Monday! Here’s How – Space.com


Space.com

Watch Orbital ATK Launch a Cargo Ship for NASA Early Monday! Here's How
Space.com
WALLOPS ISLAND, Va. —An Orbital ATK Antares rocket will launch a Cygnus supply ship Monday morning (May 21) to deliver more than 3 tons NASA cargo to the International Space Station, and you can watch it live online. The Antares rocket is scheduled ...
Antares rocket rolls to Virginia launch pad, liftoff delayed to MondaySpaceflight Now

OA-9 Cygnus resupply craft set for Monday morning launch to ISSSpaceFlight Insider
Small seeds on Cygnus cargo ship could lead to giant leap for farming in spaceGeekWire
PR Newswire (press release) -Fortune -Delmarva Daily Times -SkyandTelescope.com
all 33 news articles »

On This Day In Space! May 20, 1978: NASA Launches Pioneer Venus 1

On May 20, 1978, NASA launched a spacecraft to Venus. The mission was called Pioneer-Venus 1, but it’s also known as the Pioneer Venus Orbiter. See how it happened in our On This Day In Space video series.

Caprese Zoodles

Zucchini and caprese are summer favorites, so it makes sense that they mesh perfectly.

12 Hiking Destinations You’ll Want to Add to Your Bucket List

Trails that are definitely off the beaten path. These alternative hiking destinations are expert-approved and worth adding to your bucket list.

Watch Orbital ATK Launch a Cargo Ship for NASA Early Monday! Here’s How

An Orbital ATK Antares rocket will launch a Cygnus supply ship Monday morning (May 21) to deliver more than 3 tons NASA cargo to the International Space Station, and you can watch it live online.

A New World’s Extraordinary Orbit Points to Planet Nine – WIRED


WIRED

A New World's Extraordinary Orbit Points to Planet Nine
WIRED
In early 2016, two planetary scientists declared that a ghost planet is hiding in the depths of the solar system, well beyond the orbit of Pluto. Their claim, which they made based on the curious orbits of distant icy worlds, quickly sparked a race to ...
Yes, there might actually be a 'Planet Nine,' and the evidence is mountingYahoo News

Astronomers found new evidence that a giant ghost planet may lurk in our solar systemBusiness Insider
A Newly Discovered Solar System Object Hints at Hidden Planet NinePopular Mechanics
Gizmodo -Tech Times -SlashGear -International Business Times
all 47 news articles »

NASA mission shows humans causing massive redistribution of freshwater – The Keene Sentinel


The Keene Sentinel

NASA mission shows humans causing massive redistribution of freshwater
The Keene Sentinel
A 14-year NASA mission has confirmed that a massive redistribution of freshwater is occurring across the Earth, with middle-latitude belts drying and the tropics and higher latitudes gaining water supplies. The results, which are probably a combination ...
NASA study warns of freshwater decline in IndiaMathrubhumi English


all 9 news articles »

Still Time to Vote for Superman and Lois Lane’s Greatest Stories!

Still Time to Vote for Superman and Lois Lane’s Greatest Stories!

This year marks the 80th anniversary of the release of Action Comics #1, which featured the first appearance of Superman, but it also featured the first appearance of Lois Lane.

Therefore, rather than devote this celebration to just the Man of Steel, I figured that this time around, we’d celebrate BOTH Superman AND Lois Lane by splitting up the 80 Greatest Stories into the 40 Greatest Superman Stories and the 40 Greatest Lois Lane Stories.

Both Superman and Lois Lane have starred in a bunch of a great stories, from one-shot issues to multi-issue stories to, well, sagas. So here you will be casting your vote for who you feel are the greatest Superman and Lois Lane stories!

You folks will all vote by e-mailing me your votes at brianc@cbr.com from now up until 11:59 Pacific time, May 25th. That’s over a month. I’ll tabulate all the votes and I’ll begin a countdown of the top 80 (40/40) starting on May 30th, the day that Brian Michael Bendis’ The Man of Steel #1 comes out.

Okay, here are the guidelines!

1. E-Mail your votes to brianc@cbr.com

2. Vote for your TEN favorite Superman stories AND your ten favorite Lois Lane stories (from comic books only). They can be single issue stories. They can be longer storylines. It’s all up to you.

3. Rank your ten stories from #1 (what you think is the greatest story) to #10 (what you think is the 10th greatest). I’d prefer it if you actually numbered your entry, #1-10. It’s easier for me to count. Really, just use this template:
________________________________________________________________________________________________

TEN GREATEST SUPERMAN STORIES
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
9.
10.

TEN GREATEST LOIS LANE STORIES
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
9.
10.

________________________________________________________________________________________________

4. Your top choice will be given 10 points, your second choice 9, etc.

5. You are not required to cast a ballot for both Superman and Lois Lane. I’d prefer that you do both, but if you want to do just one or the other, then that’s okay. Don’t cast a ballot unless you can come up with 10 stories. Come on, you have to know at least 10 stories that you liked featuring the two characters, right?

6. Only stories where Superman or Lois are the lead or the co-lead character count. In other words, don’t vote for Justice League of America stories where Superman is just a member of the team, like the “Hyperclan” story or “Rock of Ages,” but you CAN vote for Justice League stories which are basically Superman stories just in the pages of Justice League. Just use your own common sense. I think I can trust that you can tell a story meant as a “Superman” story apart from a story where Superman is just a member of the Justice League. Brave and the Bold and DC Comics Presents stories featuring Superman count. Supermman stories in anthologies count. Stories where Lois Lane guest-stars in someone else’s book count. I think you can tell when a Superman story is featuring Lois as a co-lead and not just a secondary character.

7. Runs are not stories. To wit, you can’t pick, say, Peter Tomasi’s run on Superman and call it a story. It is not. It contains a number of different stories. I’ll allow All-Star Superman, though, as a single story for Superman (but for Lois Lane, just her two spotlight issues within All-Star Superman). It’s fine if there is overlap between the two lists.

8. Miniseries count as one story. In the case of anthologies, each story inside the anthology is considered an independent story. For the sake of Man of Steel, I’ll allow you to count Lois’ two spotlight issues (#2 and #4) as separate stories for the sake of this list.

9. If you have questions and or requests for clarification, feel free to e-mail me. I’ll make various decisions as necessary.

10. I’ll list various distinctions that I think are worth mentioning here, based on questions people have sent me:

Have fun! And, of course, you know, go VOTE!!

The post Still Time to Vote for Superman and Lois Lane’s Greatest Stories! appeared first on CBR.

Jupiter has lots of company – Republican & Herald


Republican & Herald

Jupiter has lots of company
Republican & Herald
Jupiter, the goliath planet of our solar system, is set to put on quite a show through the summer in the Pottsville sky. Currently, it's high enough and certainly bright enough for great viewing. Unfortunately, because of where it is among the backdrop ...
In Our Skies: Jupiter rides majestically across our southern skyAlamogordo Daily News


all 2 news articles »

Google pushes artificial intelligence for upgraded news app

For its updated news application, Google is doubling down on the use of artificial intelligence as part of an effort to weed our disinformation and help users get viewpoints beyond their own "filter bubble."

Rural Hawaii communities face various volcano threats

In the weeks since Hawaii's Kilauea volcano began erupting, dozens of homes have burned from oozing lava, people have fled their homes and plumes of steam from the summit have shot skyward, prompting officials to distribute face masks to protect against ash particles.

Brumby reprieve: Australia to ban wild horses cull at national park

Australia said Sunday the culling of wild horses in a unique national park would be banned despite fears the animals were threatening native species.

Apple-Samsung iPhone design copying case goes to jury

Jurors return to a Silicon Valley courtroom Monday to put a price on patented iPhone design features copied by Samsung in a legal case dating back seven years.

Japan’s new ‘Airbnb law’: a double-edged sword

Rental platforms like Airbnb are hoping for a boost from a new law coming into force next month in Japan ahead of an expected surge in demand for the 2020 Olympics, but experts warn it could actually hamper business in the short-term.

Medical News Today: Type 2 diabetes: Intermittent fasting may raise risk

The 'trendy' diet of intermittent fasting may have adverse consequences on our metabolism, a new study warns. The diet may impair pancreatic function.

Medical News Today: How tomato sauce can boost your gut health

Tomato sauce is not just a tasty addition to your meal, it is also a healthful one. It could help to boost the activity of good bacteria in the gut.

Last time Earth experienced a cooler-than-average month was in 1984 – thanks to global warming – International Business Times, India Edition


International Business Times, India Edition

Last time Earth experienced a cooler-than-average month was in 1984 – thanks to global warming
International Business Times, India Edition
The Earth is getting warmer by the year, and the rate at which it is getting warmer is worrying. Since December 1984, we have experienced 400 consecutive "warmer-than-average" months, and it is getting worse. To put that in perspective, Ronald Reagan ...
Global Warming Causes Earth's 400th Straight Month of Above Average TemperaturesGuardian Liberty Voice

Earth Shatters Climate Record, Sending Planet Toward 'Worst Case Scenario'Inverse
NOAA reports increasing global temperature in its 400 months global reportScience Examiner

all 9 news articles »

Mindy Kaling Should Write a Ms. Marvel Comic, Says Marvel Editor

Mindy Kaling Should Write a Ms. Marvel Comic, Says Marvel Editor

Kamala Khan aka Ms. Marvel has been one of Marvel Comics’ biggest success stories in the publisher’s recent history. As a young Pakistani-American Muslim superhero on the fringes of society, she’s been a part of coming-of-age stories in her solo title, as well as Champions. Now, the editor that helped bring her to life, Sana Amanat, would love to see award-winning actress and writer, Mindy Kaling (Ocean’s 8, A Wrinkle in Time), pen a comic book involving the teen superhero.

This comes after Riz Ahmed (Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Venom) tweeted that he’d love to write the screenplay for a Ms. Marvel movie focusing on Kamala, a character Marvel Studios has plans for. The actor mentioned fellow writers of color, Kumail Nanjiani and Kaling, as people he’d love to work on the project with him. After Kaling chimed in online as a huge Ms. Marvel fan, Amanat invited her to collaborate with one of Kamala’s creators, writer G. Willow Wilson.

RELATED: Rogue One’s Riz Ahmed Offers to Write Ms. Marvel Screenplay

With Kaling expressing delight at the possibility, Amanat made it clear she’s welcome to visit Marvel’s offices in New York to see what the future holds for Kamala, and maybe even to get the ball rolling on a potential team-up.

RELATED: Ms. Marvel Is Coming to the MCU, Feige Assures

With the stunning work Wilson has done with the character in the past, and Kaling’s talent, this would definitely bring even more eyes and authenticity to Kamala’s story. Ms. Marvel’s adventures will next be seen in Marvel Rising: Secret Warriors, a new animated feature from Marvel Television. Although an official release date is yet to be announced, it’s expected to debut later this year.

The post Mindy Kaling Should Write a Ms. Marvel Comic, Says Marvel Editor appeared first on CBR.

Robert Downey Jr. Shares Avengers: Infinity War BTS Video

Robert Downey Jr. Shares Avengers: Infinity War BTS Video

WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for Avengers: Infinity War, in theaters now.


Given how successful and epic Marvel Studios’ movies are on the big screen, fans are always grateful for a peek behind the curtain to see just how these mammoth productions come together. Now, thanks to Robert Downey Jr., we can garner insight into one of Avengers: Infinity War‘s more pivotal moments.

The actor posted a behind-the-scenes video on Instagram depicting him in one of the movie’s early battle sequences, where the Black Order finally comes to Earth to claim the Time Stone from Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch).

RELATED: Avengers: Infinity War Reveals Digital HD Release Date

In the video, we see Downey Jr. and Cumberbatch, as well as Benedict Wong’s Wong and Mark Ruffalo’s Bruce Banner in action. Seeing that this is raw footage, Downey Jr. is missing his superhero armor, of course, as there’s no VFX highlighting him as Iron Man. Fans can also glimpse the Russo brothers directing Downey Jr. on how to gloat to his fellow superheroes, just before he’s pulled into the sky and tossed away by Ebony Maw.

This raw footage is from the scene where Tony Stark’s body is covered by his Bleeding Edge armor as he takes out the monstrous Cull Obsidian, all after Banner fails to bring the Hulk out. In the ensuing moments, he turns and gloats to Strange, only to be dispatched thanks to Maw’s telekinetic abilities.

Despite a hearty effort, both Stark and Strange would lose this fight, ending up on Titan alongside Spider-Man to take on Thanos. And as we all know, our heroes sadly end up losing big time there as well. Maybe soon enough, Downey Jr. can release raw footage of those sequences too, but until then, we’ll always have this digital souvenir from the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s streets of New York.

RELATED: Infinity War Passes Jurassic World to Become Biggest Summer Movie Ever

In theaters now, Avengers: Infinity War stars Robert Downey Jr., Josh Brolin, Mark Ruffalo, Tom Hiddleston, Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Jeremy Renner, Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Olsen, Sebastian Stan, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Bettany, Samuel L. Jackson, Cobie Smulders, Benedict Wong, Zoe Saldana, Karen Gillan, Vin Diesel, Dave Bautista, Pom Klementieff, Scarlett Johansson, Tom Holland and Anthony Mackie. It will release on Digital and 4K UHD on July 31.

The post Robert Downey Jr. Shares Avengers: Infinity War BTS Video appeared first on CBR.

Daredevil: Vincent D’Onofrio Wraps Season 3 Filming

Daredevil: Vincent D’Onofrio Wraps Season 3 Filming

When the Man Without Fear returns to the small screen, he will once again have to contend with an old, quite sturdy foe. Actor Vincent D’Onofrio, who portrays the villainous Wilson Fisk in Marvel’s Daredevil, has confirmed that he has wrapped filming for the third season of the Netflix series.

The actor revealed the news on Twitter, along with a foreboding, menacing picture of his clenched fist bathed in the red light that has become synonymous with the action series. “I wrapped on DD last night,” D’Onofrio wrote, before adding that fans have every reason to look forward to the next season. “What we have coming for you is really something.”

RELATED: REPORT: Daredevil Season 3 Finds the Mark with Bullseye Casting

Wilson Fisk served as the main antagonist of the first season of Daredevil. While Season 2 focused on the threat of The Hand, D’Onofrio did return for a few episodes, setting up what we can assume is a big return for the character in Season 3.

Last we saw of Matt Murdock was in the team-up series The Defenders, where the wounded vigilante was left in the care of his mother, and believed dead by the outside world. This has led to speculation that Season 3 of the series will take inspiration from the “Born Again” storyline from the comics, a storyline that saw Fisk gain the upper hand over Murdock.

RELATED: Daredevil Season 3 Set Photos Reveal Return of the Black Suit

There is still no official release date set for Daredevil Season 3, although it is expected to return to Netflix sometime in 2018 with new showrunner Erik Oleson at the helm.

The post Daredevil: Vincent D’Onofrio Wraps Season 3 Filming appeared first on CBR.

Deadpool 2 Shot Deliberately Misleading Trailer Scenes in the Name of Comedy

Deadpool 2 Shot Deliberately Misleading Trailer Scenes in the Name of Comedy

SPOILER WARNING: The following article contains major spoilers for Deadpool 2, in theaters now.


It seems studios have finally wised up and instead of giving away too much of a movie in trailers; they’re now using footage intended to misdirect fans from what will actually happen. Avengers: Infinity War did this by using fake footage of the Hulk in Wakanda, and now Fox has done the same for Deadpool 2.

After seeing several bombastic trailers, fans were expecting loads of action sequences involving Deadpool and his X-Force teammates such as Terry Crew’s Bedlam and Lewis Tan’s Shatterstar, but they were certainly in for a rude awakening. In trailers leading up to the film’s release, Deadpool is shown leaping out of a plane with his assembled X-Force crew. However, everyone (except Deadpool and Domino) parachute to their deaths due to high winds. According to the movie’s writers, this was intended to fool audiences into thinking that Ryan Reynold’s Wade Wilson would indeed be getting help against the time-traveling Cable.

RELATED: How Deadpool 2 Sets Up Fox’s X-Force Movie

“Shatterstar helped, because he was an original member of X-Force. I think that’s the one that made people think, ‘OK, this is legit,'” said co-writer Rhett Rheese in an interview with CBR. “Also, we had actors who were really generous, and they were willing to shoot footage that they knew and we knew wasn’t going to end up in the movie, but was only going to be in marketing material.”

“So we had Terry Crews out there fighting stunt guys, knowing that it was only going to be in commercials — and we did use it, it’s in commercials and it’s in trailers,” he added. “It was all to help mislead the audience on this big gag. It was very elaborately constructed to make sure people bought it.”

X-Force’s demise led to Cable eventually joining Deadpool and Domino to save the soul of a youngster, Russell, who was on the path to becoming a villain called Firefist. So, in a sense, this humorous plot twist did create room for the real X-Force to appear in the future. “There was a moment in time we were going to do standees, their own posters, we were going all in on this idea,” added co-writer Paul Wernick.

RELATED: Is Cable a Mutant in Deadpool 2? It’s an ‘Open Question’

“We were really going to try and convince people that they were going to be alive so that nobody sniffed it. And I think it worked, in the sense that nobody sees that coming,” added Rheese. However, the writers maintained that because of Deadpool using time-travel to save loved ones in the mid-credits — his girlfriend Vanessa (Morena Baccarin) and the simpleton known as Peter (Rob Delaney) as two examples — any of these members can be revived, once they prove beneficial to the narrative, of course.

Directed by David Leitch, Deadpool 2 stars Ryan Reynolds as Deadpool, Brianna Hildebrand as Negasonic Teenage Warhead, Leslie Uggams as Blind Al, Stefan Kapičić as the voice of Colossus, and Karan Soni as Dopinder, with newcomers Zazie Beetz as Domino, Josh Brolin as Cable and Julian Dennison as Russell. The film is playing in theaters everywhere.

The post Deadpool 2 Shot Deliberately Misleading Trailer Scenes in the Name of Comedy appeared first on CBR.

Deadpool 2 Originally Had Much More of a Downer Ending

Deadpool 2 Originally Had Much More of a Downer Ending

WARNING: The following article contains major spoilers for Deadpool 2, in theaters now.


Death is something that comic book movies rarely stick with. Fans are already expecting several of the casualties from Avengers: Infinity War to return in the sequel, but in the Deadpool movies, given how grimy and grounded it is, people usually stay dead.

However, director David Leitch passed up the opportunity to do just that in Deadpool 2, bringing Vanessa (Morena Baccarin) back to life at the end of the film, after she was killed in front of Wade Wilson (Ryan Reynolds). The Merc with a Mouth used time-travel to save her, and the writers admitted that while this was a “tough” choice, they wanted to give Deadpool a happy ending; something they didn’t originally have in the script.

RELATED: Deadpool Tops Pennywise, Breaks It’s Box Office Record for R-Rated Film

“We originally did not save her,” co-writer Rhett Rheese said in an interview with CBR. “It was interesting — we thought we might have to save her with the time machine, because the audience would be mad at us, but they were accepting of her being dead.”

Rheese revealed that while some fans may have been ticked at Vanessa’s resurrection, it did fit with the spontaneous and comedic nature of the franchise, even creating room for her to evolve into Copycat, as per the comic books. “Now we can bring her back as Copycat, and Morena [Baccarin] was very thrilled when she got the call. ‘We got the time machine working, and you’re still alive!’ ‘I knew it!’ It was really funny,” he added.

Co-writer Paul Wernick did admit Vanessa had to die to break Wade’s spirit at the beginning of the film. But he also confessed that because there weren’t many females characters, and because Vanessa’s relationship with Wade was “the emotional core” of the movie, they had to find a way to bring her back to life.

RELATED: Deadpool 2’s Zazie Beetz Agrees With You: Domino Needs an Origin Story

“It was a difficult decision, but one, story-wise, that we felt we had to make,” Wernick said regarding her death at the hands of some gangsters. “And then we got to have our cake and eat it too by bringing her back to life at the very end.”

Directed by David Leitch, Deadpool 2 stars Ryan Reynolds as Deadpool, Brianna Hildebrand as Negasonic Teenage Warhead, Leslie Uggams as Blind Al, Stefan Kapičić as the voice of Colossus, and Karan Soni as Dopinder, with newcomers Zazie Beetz as Domino, Josh Brolin as Cable and Julian Dennison as Russell. The film is playing in theaters everywhere.

The post Deadpool 2 Originally Had Much More of a Downer Ending appeared first on CBR.

Mars rock named for Duluth – Duluth News Tribune


Duluth News Tribune

Mars rock named for Duluth
Duluth News Tribune
Meet Duluth, a desk-sized chunk of rock once lapped by the waves of an ancient Martian lake. Roger Wiens, 58, the project leader for the ChemCam instrument on the Mars Curiosity rover and Duluth native, couldn't be happier to see his hometown chosen as ...
Back in Action? Mars Rover Curiosity to Test New Drilling Technique SaturdaySpace.com

NASA Finds a Solution for Repairing the Curiosity Rover's Busted Drill on MarsOuter Places
Curiosity Rover's Busted Jackhammer Could Soon Get a FixGizmodo
Phys.Org -The Inquisitr -Tech Times -SpaceCoastDaily.com
all 19 news articles »

First radar-equipped CubeSat among three heading to the ISS – New Atlas


Facts of Week

First radar-equipped CubeSat among three heading to the ISS
New Atlas
When NASA's latest Cygnus cargo mission to the International Space Station (ISS) lifts off on Monday, its manifest of experiments and general supplies will include three CubeSats, including the first equipped with radar. The size of three cereal boxes ...
NASA to launch three CubeSat satellites on next International Space Station resupply missionClarksville Online

Mars-Bound Spacecraft Captures First Image Of Earth And MoonI4U News
NASA's InSight Mars Spacecraft got the first pictures of Earth from MarsDaily Enterpriser
Spaceflight News -Canadian Homesteading
all 6 news articles »

Infinity War: [SPOILER]’s Big Entrance Gets the LEGO Treatment

Infinity War: [SPOILER]’s Big Entrance Gets the LEGO Treatment

WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for Avengers: Infinity War, in theaters now.


Avengers: Infinity War was full of iconic moments, including one which was apparently improvised by Drax actor Dave Bautista. However, the biggest moment in the film was admittedly when Thor, along with Groot and Rocket, arrived in the midst of the battle for Wakanda. And now fans can relive that moment over again thanks to a LEGO recreation.

The folks at Huxley Berg Studios took the actual dialogue and music from the film and recreated the moments leading up to Thor’s arrival using LEGO figurines. The entire scene is crafted with delicate precision, while making the point to showcase the heroes as they’re outnumbered and on the edge of defeat, just before the God of Thunder makes his presence known. Unfortunately, because the movie is still in theaters, the audio is from a bootlegged copy, making it hard to hear at times. Still, the animation manages to capture that same excitement fans felt when in the theater.

RELATED: Avengers: Infinity War Reveals Digital HD Release Date

RELATED: Doctor Strange Conjures a Magical Infinity War Figure From Hot Toys

In theaters now, Avengers: Infinity War stars Robert Downey Jr., Josh Brolin, Mark Ruffalo, Tom Hiddleston, Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Jeremy Renner, Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Olsen, Sebastian Stan, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Bettany, Samuel L. Jackson, Cobie Smulders, Benedict Wong, Zoe Saldana, Karen Gillan, Vin Diesel, Dave Bautista, Pom Klementieff, Scarlett Johansson, Tom Holland and Anthony Mackie.

The post Infinity War: [SPOILER]’s Big Entrance Gets the LEGO Treatment appeared first on CBR.

Gotham Pays Tribute to the Batman: Arkham Asylum Video Game

Gotham Pays Tribute to the Batman: Arkham Asylum Video Game

WARNING: This article contains spoilers for the Gotham Season 4 finale, “No Man’s Land.”


Fox’s Gotham has never adhered to one specific Batman story. Over the course of four seasons, the series has proven time and again that it can mine any aspect of the mythos to create one unified whole. Ever since its pilot, the series has blended ideas, themes and nods to all previous incarnations of The Dark Knight. From Tim Burton’s Batman and the 90s animated series to the ’66 television show and Christopher Nolan’s movies, Gotham has showcased the long and rich history of the character through all mediums.

In fact, this week’s Season 4 finale, titled “No Man’s Land,” not only paid tribute to the comic book story of the same name along with Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight Rises, it also managed to feature an unexpected nod to the popular video game, Batman: Arkham Asylum.

RELATED: Gotham’s Final Season Has The Potential To Be Its Best

Gotham Jeremiah and Bruce Wayne No Mans Land

The final episode of the series’ fourth season was filled with plot twists and big developments that took Bruce Wayne ever closer to becoming the Batman. In fact, one of those scenes came early on in the episode, when Bruce faced an imprisoned Jeremiah Valeska in the GCPD’s holding room. While the character doesn’t use the name, Jeremiah is as close to the Joker as Gotham will get, and this scene confirmed the idea entirely. When Bruce walks into the room, he finds Jeremiah, strapped against a gurney held in an upright position.

If the scene looks slightly familiar to some, it’s because it almost appears to be lifted straight out of Arkham Asylum. As players might recall, at the beginning of the video game, Batman escorts a team of security guards taking Joker, who is strapped to an upright gurney, to Arkham Asylum.

Batman Arkham City Joker intro

The Gotham scene features almost the exact same frame, making it clear that it was inspired by the game. Bruce is in the same spot as Batman, and there is even a guard on watch in the bottom right corner. Considering that the Arkham video game series shares a lot in common with the “No Man’s Land” comic book storyline and the events of the Season 4 finale, it appears this scene was no accident. It was clearly meant to be a sign of things to come, and of the dangers that lie ahead.

RELATED: Gotham’s S4 Finale Introduced Major Players of the Batman Mythos

Gotham stars Ben McKenzie as James Gordon, Donal Logue as Harvey Bullock, David Mazouz as Bruce Wayne, Robin Lord Taylor as Penguin, Camren Bicondova as Selina Kyle, Erin Richards as Barbara Kean and Sean Pertwee as Alfred Pennyworth. The series will return next season.

The post Gotham Pays Tribute to the Batman: Arkham Asylum Video Game appeared first on CBR.

Deadpool 2’s Best Comic Book Easter Eggs

Deadpool 2’s Best Comic Book Easter Eggs

WARNING: The following article contains major spoilers for Deadpool 2, in theaters now.


Fans are conditioned by this point to scour superhero movies for sly nods to to the comic book source material and clever cameos. That goes double for a character like Deadpool, whose fourth wall-breaking nature makes such references not only easier but that much more anticipated. If Deadpool 2 weren’t packed full of Easter eggs, audiences would undoubtedly be disappointed.

So, it’s lucky for everyone that the Fox sequel doesn’t hold back, with callouts to comic book characters, creators and even a location. We breakdown the best below.

X-Men

One of the biggest surprises of the movie was a split-second cameo by the cast of X-Men: Apocalypse, which occurs while Wade and Colossus are walking through the halls of the X-Mansion. The camera peers into a room off the main corridor, and we see Beast (Nicholas Hoult), Cyclops (Tye Sheridan), Professor X (James McAvoy), Quicksilver (Evan Peters), Storm (Alexandra Shipp) and Nightcrawler (Kodi Smit-McPhee). The really eagle-eyed will notice Quicksilver is even wearing his trademark rock T-shirt; this time it’s Nirvana.

Headpool

At the beginning of the movie, Deadpool tries to commit suicide by igniting a half-dozen barrels of kerosene. The explosion sends his arms, a Croc, a handgun, his utility belt and then his head all careening toward the camera. As Wilson’s melon passes, it’s still talking in what would appear to be a nod to Headpool.

RELATED: We Didn’t Expect Cable’s Heartbreaking Deadpool Backstory to Give Us Hope

There are dozens of alternate-reality versions of Deadpool in the Marvel Universe, but one of the most popular is the Deadpool from Earth-2149, the world from the Marvel Zombies series. While its Deadpool gets decapitated, his disembodied noggin escapes to Marvel’s mainstream universe, and through a convoluted sequence of events ends up joining Wade’s Deadpool Corps. Headpool commonly sports a propeller beanie, which actually transports him.

Lady Deadpool

Another popular parallel-reality Deadpool is Wanda Wilson, aka Lady Deadpool, wlooks just like Wade except that she has a shock of blonde hair sprouting from the back of her mask. We’re pretty sure this character gets a nod when Deadpool is stripping in a bar in Biloxi near the start of the film. He’s in his suit, but is wearing a wig over the mask. Of course, it would make more sense, even with his scarring, to have his mask off if he were trying to be believable as a woman. Instead we get a look that seems to be some fun fan service.

Page 2:

The post Deadpool 2’s Best Comic Book Easter Eggs appeared first on CBR.

Is Cable a Mutant in Deadpool 2? It’s an ‘Open Question’

Is Cable a Mutant in Deadpool 2? It’s an ‘Open Question’

WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for Deadpool 2, in theaters now.


Fans were over the moon excited when news emerged that the time-traveling soldier known as Cable (Josh Brolin) was going to be used in Deadpool 2, especially considering many felt there was potential to fix Fox’s continuity issues with the X-Men film franchise.

One of the biggest things fans also wanted to see was how Cable would be depicted as the son of Cyclops and Madelyne Pryor (a clone of Jean Grey engineered by the geneticist, Mister Sinister). However, in director David Leitch’s sequel, Cable uses technology instead of superpowers; but according to the movie’s screenwriters, Cable being a mutant is something left purposely vague.

RELATED: Deadpool 2 Writers Break Down the (Many) Big Surprises in the Film

“I think it is a little of an open question. We’re going to explore Cable more moving forward, we just didn’t want to overload it,” co-writer Rhett Rheese said in an interview with CBR. “We did have versions of the script where he was using telekinesis, and it just became — suddenly he was Force-hurling stuff, it felt like Star Wars. We just decided to dial it back. Let’s keep it about technology. Let’s not overwhelm the audience.”

When fellow writer Paul Wernick pointed out to Rheese that Cable is able to levitate his gun back to him from anywhere in the film, Reese indicated that this ability may not be mutant-based at all. Of course, some thought otherwise because in the comics, despite being infected with the techno-organic virus, Cable still displayed powers such as telekinesis and telepathy.

“But even that feels like it’s a technology means, as opposed to maybe he’s using his mind to do it,” Rheese contended. “It’s just a fine line to making him complex and interesting and not overloading an audience with crazy backstory, and the techno-organic virus, which we’ll get into hopefully in the future, and those kinds of things. We’re just kind of riding that line.”

RELATED: Is Cable Actually a Mutant in Deadpool 2? An Investigation

If Cable is indeed a mutant, Wernick made it clear this would be clarified in the future, with Fox’s X-Force movie in mind, as they didn’t want to overload the audience right now. “It could be a little overwhelming, I think, for a mainstream audience, so we wanted to keep it simple and relatable,” Wernick said. “You’ve got this time traveler from the future who’s trying to save his family, I think was the core of who Cable was in a Deadpool 2 movie. Moving forward in X-Force, my guess is that will be explored further and better, and we’ll get more backstory as to who he is and what his powers are.”

Directed by David Leitch, Deadpool 2 stars Ryan Reynolds as Deadpool, Brianna Hildebrand as Negasonic Teenage Warhead, Leslie Uggams as Blind Al, Stefan Kapičić as the voice of Colossus, and Karan Soni as Dopinder, with newcomers Zazie Beetz as Domino, Josh Brolin as Cable and Julian Dennison as Russell. The film is playing in theaters everywhere.

The post Is Cable a Mutant in Deadpool 2? It’s an ‘Open Question’ appeared first on CBR.

Phase 4 MCU: 12 Things We May See (And 13 Marvel Will Never Let Us Have)

Phase 4 MCU: 12 Things We May See (And 13 Marvel Will Never Let Us Have)

Death is not the end; and not just because right now Elon Musk is working on android bodies so that Robo-Musk can forever hook up with Cyber-Grimes while we mere mortals toil away in the Morlock caves. No, death is not the end because no matter if one man dies, a country collapses or even half the universe turns to dust in the wind, there are still more stories to be told.

When it comes to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, audiences seem eager for more, and right now the folks with the right credentials and qualifications are coordinating characters and story arcs to create the hotly anticipated Phase 4 of the MCU. Of course, unlike when the grand deluge of details on Phase 3 took the wind out of Ant-Man’s sails, Kevin Feige has played it coy about what’s to come in the next stage of the MCU. Sure, some stray films have been confirmed since then, like Spider-Man 2 and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, and others seem inevitable, as the unprecedented success of Black Panther nearly demands a sequel. But as for the rest, all we can do is speculate. So, that’s what we intend to do; give you guys a healthy mix of reasonable expectations and those moonshot ideas too wild for them to ever give us.

(NEVER GET) SPIDER-MAN 2099

Spidey Threads 2099

With Spider-Man proper in the MCU, an animated Miles Morales on the way, and Sony threatening to wring every ounce of goodwill it had built up by teaming with Marvel through things like Venom and the announced Black & Silver, some might suggest it doesn’t seem too unlikely that Spider-Man 2099 could get his shot at the spotlight. And while it’s certainly possible that Miguel O’Hara could appear in the aforementioned Into the Spider-Verse animated feature, here’s our hot take:

A live action Spider-Man 2099 is too bonkers, even for a studio rooted in Thunder Gods and talking raccoons.

For starters, while Sony may be spinning off more alternate universes than you could shake a web-shooter at, Marvel Studios proper has yet to dive into the idea of alternate realities. Even if they do begin toying with the idea that its long-established cinematic universe might not be the only one, one would imagine a dystopian cyberpunk future might cut a bit too close to the aesthetic of competitor-turned-acquisition Fox’s X-Men: Days of Future Past. Add in the fact that recent “darkest timeline” future films like Blade Runner 2049 and Ready Player One failed to make a remarkable box-office splash, and we can safely say our dreams of a neon-lit web-slinger from an alternate timeline may remain bound to the comic book page.

(COULD GET) BLADE

Demands for Blade have been strong ever since Marvel made its first hints at a larger cinematic universe. Hell, while most people credit X-Men for the modern comic book movie craze, it was actually a 1998 adaptation of Blade that not only saved the comic book genre from Batman & Robin-level camp, and the vampire genre from Vampire In Brooklyn style spoofs, but even helped move the sci-fi/action genre from Face/Off absurdity to The Matrix stone cold cool. But observant viewers may have seen the MCU subtly set the stage for Blade in the unlikeliest of places: Thor: Ragnarok.

Though a vibrant space romp may not seem like the project to drop hints at the grimy, grim and grounded world of Blade, it makes sense when one remembers director Taika Waititi’s previous project, the vampire domestic-comedy What We Do In The Shadows. Indeed, it was this film Taika likely had in mind when he had Korg make an off-handed joke about how the wooden-spiked trident would only be helpful against “three vampires huddled together”. Yet, just like that, in a throwaway line, vampires are established as real in the MCU. Now all Kevin Feige need do is find a new Blade and bring the 1998 new-metal swagger of the 2/3 beloved trilogy into the modern era. Come on, Kevin, you know John Boyega could rock that leather duster. Maybe get Atlanta breakout Keith Stanfield to bulk up and start stabbing some bloodsuckers. We don’t care who fills Wesley Snipes shoes so long as we get Blade. You can even keep Snipes, have you seen Chi-Raq?

(NEVER GET) HAWKEYE

Now, to be fair, if we used the Time Stone to look at the over 14 million possible outcomes for Phase 4, there’s maybe one where Hawkeye actually gets a solo film. Yet, even in that far-flung reality, there’s no chance we’d get the Hawkeye we all really want. Though attempts had been made to get Hawkeye out of the background and into a solo comic book title before, none had hit until Sex Criminals author, and hipster Harry Potter lookalike Matt Fraction took over and infused a self-effacing, slice of life sensibility to the archer’s off-hours.

While the book won both Eisner and Harvey awards, and had a devoted following akin to cult TV shows like Community, the powers that be never seemed to “get” it, and the book was unceremoniously cancelled after 22 issues. Though the run is now considered the definitive Hawkeye by many, held up for him in the same fashion many point to Walt Simonson’s work on Thor or Brubaker’s take on Captain America, it’s unlikely the books will be handled with the same fawning reverence those other runs received from their respective franchise’s screenwriters. Leaked set photos suggest Hawkeye taking on a darker role as Ronin in Avengers 4, rather than the casual crimefighter of Fraction’s run, and though we did wind up with an adaptation of an iconic comic arc in Captain America: The Winter Soldier, it’s hard to imagine Hawkeye: Lucky The Pizza Dog filling those same marquees.

(COULD GET) BLACK WIDOW

When she first appeared as second-fiddle in Iron Man 2 and was then unceremoniously buttshot-ed on the Avengers poster, many began clamoring for Black Widow to get a solo endeavor, and couldn’t quite understand why trilogies were slated for the rest of the team while she was the spy left out in the cold. One side screamed “sexism”. The other side said “It’s not sexism!”. Ike Perlmutter, Marvel’s Chairman, said girl superheroes shouldn’t get movies because nobody will go see them. Then both sides said “Yeesh!” And since then, Wonder Woman has broken box-office records, Captain Marvel has become the most intriguing prospect in the MCU’s slate, the fervent hunger for the further adventures of the redhead with red in her ledger is stronger than ever.

Reports suggest Marvel has been taking meetings with a wide-array of directors, from Belle’s Amma Asante to the director of the Oscar nominated Mustang, Deniz Gamze Erguven.

Additionally, it’s been suggested that the Black Widow film could be a prequel, set after the Cold War, and tie-in Sebastian Stan’s Winter Soldier. Now, underwhelming recent releases like the would-be LeCarre whiff Atomic Blonde and the sluggish Red Sparrow might suggest that America’s taste for sexy Soviet espionage might be waning, but with the backing of Marvel Studios and the fan-favorite character at the forefront, we think Black Widow could be absolutely killer.

(NEVER GET) GHOST RACERS

Ghost Racers 1 Spirits of Ignition

Sure, there’s a possibility that the MCU could incorporate a Ghost Rider into their big screen offerings. Robbie Reyes has already been incorporated into Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, but if the movie side of the MCU continues to ignore the TV side, Johnny Blaze only briefly appeared in the series and could easily be given a new, Nicholas Cage-less big screen treatment. There are so many incarnations of the Spirit of Vengeance to choose from, but we’d like to counter: Why choose?

We should thank our lucky stars we got a movie as bonkers as Thor: Ragnarok, but adapting the Ghost Racers miniseries from the Secret Wars event would make Ragnarok look like Before Sunrise. For those unfamiliar, the most recent Secret Wars event combined every alternate universe in Marvel Comics onto one planet dubbed “Battleworld”, each occupying its own nation. Located within Doomstadt, the capital of Battleworld, is the Killiseum, wherein the Spirits of Ignition race for the entertainment of the crowd and the villainous Arcade. The expected cast of characters, like Johnny Blaze and Danny Ketch are joined by Robbie “The Hellcharger” Reyes in his Battle-Charger, Alejandra “Nicaraguan Hellfire” Jones astride her Hell Cycle, and the most gloriously absurd, Carter Slade, a ghost centaur cowboy. Take those words in: Ghost centaur cowboy. What more could you ask? A Ghost Racers movie could be like Mad Max: Fury Road but with somehow more fire! A dazzling, adrenaline fueled spectacle of sheer audacity.

(COULD GET) FANTASTIC FOUR

Let’s not even say “could” because at this point, factoring in Disney’s inevitable acquisition of 20th Century Fox, it’s more a matter of when. The First Family of Marvel has had absolutely no luck when it comes to big screen adaptations (except…you know… the 2005 one ain’t that bad… don’t @ us), and with how well Kevin Feige and the MCU have handled far less conventional characters like Rocket Raccoon or Dormammu, they’d definitely be in the right hands this time around.

So how will it happen? Will Avengers 4 give us a post-credits peek into Latveria? How will Chris Evans feel coming face to face with a new Human Torch? And who could they cast? The internet seems to demand real-life couple Jon Krasinski and Emily Blunt, but would they even want to? Considering the tumultuous aspects of the Reed and Sue relationship, particularly as explored in the Jonathon Hickman run, would having to act out those scenes with your real-world spouse be akin to the toll Eyes Wide Shut took on the marriage of Nicole Kidman and Tom Cruise? And are we as a viewing public willing to let a loving marriage be destroyed just to get Doctor Doom onscreen? The answer, obviously, is yes. Bring it on.

(NEVER GET) ALPHA FLIGHT

Considering this Fox merger will give the Almighty Mouse access to the Fantastic Four, the X-Men and the Silver Surfer, it’s hard to believe Alpha Flight will get a shot at the spotlight until they’re truly scraping the bottom of the barrel. The tragedy is that in the right hands an Alpha Flight movie could be absolute gold; the travesty is that those right hands will probably never get to work with Disney again after getting fired from one of their biggest tentpole franchises, Solo: A Star Wars Story.

That’s right, we’re talking about a Lord & Miller Alpha Flight. Just imagine it.

Sure, the duo are irreverent writer/directors who can always play into the absurdity of a scenario, but they never do it with any sense of detachment, or being above the source material. Anyone else tasked with adapting Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs, 21 Jump Street or story-less plastic building blocks would have been horribly sarcastic, winking to the audience with every scene and consistently commenting on how “dumb” every conceit of the story was, but Lord & Miller brought heart with their snark. Were they the right call to helm Disney’s blockbuster about the most beloved character in an otherwise wholly sincere franchise? Evidently not. But give them carte blanche over over a bunch of delightful and diverse misfit mutants (including Northstar, Marvel’s first queer character), and you could end up with a truly memorable little movie.

(COULD GET) ETERNALS

eternals

Now, in truth, we probably would have chalked this up as too “out there” for the MCU had talks of an Eternals movie not been making the rounds at the rumor mill the last few months. Maybe it was seeing, through Thor: Ragnarok and Guardians of the Galaxy, how far audiences are willing to go in terms of the cosmic side of the Marvel universe. Perhaps after DC desperately green-lit an Ava DuVernay New Gods movie in response to the the visually ambitious (and wildly underrated) A Wrinkle in Time, Disney wanted to compete in the Jack Kirby mythology game.

Either way, Eternals seems more and more likely to hit the big screen, and that should be celebrated. After the Inhumans got the short end of the stick by being pushed to TV and into the hands of the show runner who managed to tank Iron Fist (because, in the words of Kevin Smith, in Hollywood you fail upwards), fans of Marvel’s more Homeric works have been craving the crazy scope and scale of the Celestials in cinematic form. Of course, they could adapt the most well-known and accessible third volume of Eternals, penned by Neil Gaiman; but we’re hoping Marvel swings for the fences this time, and does a deep dive into the original Kirby works.

(NEVER GET) ADAM WARLOCK

“But wait!” you might be thinking “We’re definitely getting Adam Warlock in the MCU! He was teased in Guardians Vol. 2.” And you would be right. However, we’re never going to get the pure Adam Warlock as he was originally envisioned. The Adam Warlock who pops up in Marvel comics now and again is little more than a super-tan Superman who tussles with Thanos. The original Adam Warlock was born of a mix of psychedelic drugs, the Jesus Christ Superstar soundtrack and the same two issue Fantastic Four story that inspired the Rocky Horror Picture Show.

This Adam Warlock movie would have to be grand in scale, rich with vibrant colors. It would have to span galaxies and dimensions, and wrestle with issues of identity, not knowing who you truly are (a la Warlock’s battle with his future self, the evil Magus), the heavy burdened laid upon a messianic figure (as Warlock is also ultimately killed for the sins of a planet) and the transmutability of the soul (considering Warlock once wielded the Soul Stone). When you take all of those into consideration, it seems the character was tailor-made for one particular set of ambitious and somewhat infamous auteurs: If anybody could get Adam Warlock right, it’s the Wachowski siblings. Only they could combine the color palette of a Speed Racer, the philosophical ambition of Cloud Atlas and the weighted heart of the holy hero in The Matrix to accurately reflect the complex comics crafted by Jim Starlin that made Warlock such an enduring icon.

(COULD GET) MOON KNIGHT

moon knight

Ever since Jasper Sitwell mentioned a character in Cairo as a target of Project Insight in Captain America: The Winter Soldier, fans have been hoping that was a hint towards Marc Spector. Spector, one of the few Egyptian-linked heroes in Marvel comics, as a mercenary who received powers from the moon god Khonshu and became the dark vigilante Moon Knight. Moon Knight has always been a fan favorite due to his memorable design, his shattered psyche, and his multiple identities; existing simultaneously as mercenary Marc Spector, millionaire Steve Grant and lowly cab driver Jake Lockley.

Any take on the Moon Knight character would have to play with the very medium of cinema.

Of course, as Noah Hawley has demonstrated with the brilliant FX series Legion, the best and most engrossing way to portray a character’s loose grasp on reality is to keep the audience themselves guessing about what’s real. To do Moon Knight right, he couldn’t be a scattered mind in an otherwise grounded reality. Any take on the character would have to play with the very medium of cinema, to experiment with the viewer, keep them disoriented in the haze of mise-en-scene and clever editing. A proper Moon Knight film would less resemble a traditional superhero movie and be more in line with Paul Thomas Anderson’s often inaccessible Inherent Vice. In fact… Joaquin Phoenix was in talks to play Doctor Strange, and Josh Brolin is already in the MCU. Perhaps we can coax PTA to follow up Phantom Thread’s Oscar nominations with a turn at Fist of Khonshu. If that doesn’t legitimize comic book movies in the eyes of the Academy, nothing will.

(NEVER GET) MOON GIRL & DEVIL DINOSAUR

Created only two years ago by Amy Reeder, Brandon Montclare and Natacha Bustos, Moon Girl has already caught on with a number of Marvel fans. The “smartest person in the whole world” has inspired a legion of cosplayers, survived the often brutal culling of “out there” titles that happen every year, and is even in the process of getting an animated series based on her adventures with Devil Dinosaur, produced by the legendary Laurence Fishburne. Unfortunately, one can’t help but feel a little hopeless that this exciting and important character might not see the big screen any time soon, particularly because of a seemingly unrelated Disney release.

Given that Storm Reid was the spitting image of Moon Girl in this year’s A Wrinkle In Time, it’s hard not to imagine some executives using the film’s potential success as a measure for a potential Moon Girl movie, considering how Hollywood only feels a need to push for diversity when the box office receipts support it. However, the film was considered a financial failure, and critics were seemingly unable to rally behind something so unrepentantly empowering, picking apart every little “unbelievable” element or “plot hole” they’d let slide in, say, Super 8 or Stranger Things (golly, what could the difference be?). The tepid reception to a similarly styled “brainy girl” movie, and the comic book movie genre’s general reticence to stray too far from that Joseph Campbell’s “hero’s journey” mold suggests we may have to settle for just our cartoon Moon Girl for a long time to come.

(COULD GET) MS. MARVEL

Ms Marvel Kamala Khan

Let’s not be too glum about the state of diversity in comic book media. Sure, any time a character changes even slightly from how they were in the lily-white Reagan years, a portion of the internet explodes in the kind of rage that can only come from rarely being told “No.” But in spite of such paranoid pearl-clutching, somehow the single most popular new Marvel character of the new millennium is a little Muslim girl from New Jersey known as Kamala Khan, aka Ms. Marvel.

Kamala is beloved not just for her role representing an underserved aspect of American culture, nor just due to G. Willow Wilson’s spot-on writing, but because Khan functions as a fantastic audience surrogate, calling to mind what Peter Parker once was to an earlier generation: a fresh set of eyes, full of hope and wonder, relishing in the world of heroes around them. It’s that kind of spirited energy and optimistic outlook that could translate exceptionally well to the silver screen, helping a younger audience connect even more deeply to an MCU too full of middle-aged men. Sure, it would be weird to see Kamala Khan and Peter Parker as contemporaries in the MCU rather than their considerable age gap in the comics, but you can bet if it happened, Tumblr would be shipping that “bridge and tunnel” romance before the credits even rolled.

(NEVER GET) MILLIE THE MODEL

No, seriously, you guys. You may not believe it, it may feel like it’s right around the corner, but trust us: there will probably never be a Millie The Model movie. The fun, freewheelin’ gal who dates back to Marvel’s early days as Timely comics was actually poised to get the film treatment back in 2003, according to then Marvel president Bill Jemas (yes, there was a time where Marvel heads didn’t send out emails full of box office reports to say girls can’t lead movies), but it never came to pass. Now, even though Marvel is pulling from deep in its archives, it seems the only time Millie the Model might appear on camera is played by Jazy Berlin in that Iron Man film made by the “other” film industry.

The shame of it is, on a really small budget, Millie the Model could honestly make for a great film. No, seriously.

Sure, Marvel is busy corralling all their characters for a colossal blockbuster to close out Phase 3, but Phase 4 brings the opportunity to get really out there, and try some new things. Why not take a few $100,000, pocket change for Feige and co., and let indie auteur Anna Biller take a crack at Millie? Biller is best known for works like The Love Witch and Viva, films that replicate the visual style of ‘60s exploitation flicks through a feminist lens. Like Love Witch was in 2016, a Millie the Model that both dissected and paid homage to the early romance comics could prove a surprise hit in the indie circuit and garner Marvel even more critical credibility, with little financial risk.

(COULD GET) SHE-HULK

She-Hulk

Let’s face it, on paper, She-Hulk sounds… silly. Bruce Banner has a cousin, but she’s also a Hulk because she gets some of his blood. However, because it was only a little bit, she’s a smarter, calmer, leaner Hulk, and she chooses to go by “She-Hulk.” Yet, in spite of that, the character has endeared herself to readers because, regardless of how “comic book-y” her origins may seem, the character of Jessica Walters is so well-conceived, and her personality so compelling that any naysaying simply falls away. Her incredible tenacity and sharp legal mind have made her a fan favorite, and it seems only a matter of time before she’s brought to the big screen.

Of course, we’ll never get a solo She-Hulk movie, as the distribution rights for Jessica are alongside those of Banner and any other Hulk affiliated characters at Universal, and as Mark Ruffalo has stated numerous times, Disney and Universal don’t know how to play nice because “Universal doesn’t like making money.” However, just as that hasn’t stopped Bruce Banner or Thunderbolt Ross from popping up in other MCU movies, it wouldn’t be an issue for Disney to introduce Bruce’s cousin in a similar fashion, popping up in an Avengers film or even making an appearance in Jessica Jones or some more street-level franchise.

(NEVER GET) ANGELA, QUEEN OF HELL

Plenty of characters in the MCU, from Tony Stark to Nebula and Gamora, have what can lightly be described as “difficult” parents, so far be it from us to say that it would be a bridge too far that a tumultuous origin would prevent you from joining the MCU. But in the case of Angela, it’s not a matter of her fictional parentage, but rather a grand scale battle between her real world creators. In fact, Marvel’s current custody of Angela is merely a giant middle finger from one titan of modern comics to another, her continued existence inseparable from the act of spite that brought her to her current home.

To summarize the long saga, Todd McFarlane, along with a slew of other frustrated creators, left Marvel comics to form Image, a publisher whose proudest stance was creator-owned characters, the most prominent of which was McFarlane’s own Spawn. Early in his run, he brought in acclaimed writers like Alan Moore, Dave Sim and Gaiman to write a single issue. In his issue, Gaiman wrote Angela as a Spawn hunter, but became dissatisfied when McFarlane claimed sole ownership of the character. After a long legal battle, Gaiman regained the rights to Angela, promptly selling them to Marvel, giving one last McFarlane design over to the company he had left behind.

(COULD GET) A-FORCE

Jonathon Hickman’s Secret Wars, though hampered with delays towards the end, might be the last well-received, non-controversial event Marvel Comics has put out. One of the stand-out series from the expansive event was A-Force, an all female superhero book co-written by Ms. Marvel’s G. Willow Wilson and Bombshells’ Marguerite Bennett. While the A-Force book as it was written included characters we may never get in the MCU, like Mariko Yashida or Elektra, one thing gives us hope…

It’s not out of the realm of possibility that an all-female team-up movie could appear in the MCU.

Indeed, it’s been the question on plenty of reporters’ lips in various press junkets, given how many strong female characters have appeared throughout the many films, ranging from Scarlet Johansson’s Black Widow and Elizabeth Olsen’s Scarlet Witch to new editions like Tessa Thompson’s Valkyrie or Evangeline Lily’s Wasp. Every Marvel star, when asked about the possibilities, lights up at the idea, with some, like Thompson, even conceding that conversations are being had. Indeed, once the terror of Thanos has been defeated, who doesn’t want to see Nebula, Valkyrie and Mantis get hold of a ship and scour the galaxy for adventure, excitement and, in Valkyrie’s case, strong hooch?

(NEVER GET) TROUBLE

Marvel Trouble Scandalous Comic Covers Collage

Our younger readers might not remember, but Marvel made some absolutely horrendous decisions back in the late ‘90s/early 2000s in a desperate grasp for relevance. After a painfully meta-textual “satire” of the comics industry entitled Marville (get it? like Smallville…) relaunched Epic Comics, Marvel decided to kick off its new imprint with a Mark Millar penned attempt at reviving the romance comic called Trouble. You might remember Trouble for its uncomfortable, Lolita-esque covers, its risqué story about teen pregnancy, or the fact that said teen that got pregnant was implied to be Aunt May, as in Peter Parker’s Aunt May, who’s actually his mom because why not?

We won’t beat around the bush: Trouble is trash. But some of us kinda love trash. Those of us who can indulge in both battles amongst the stars and battles between Real Housewives, those of us who celebrate camp alongside the more mainstream hits, we… kinda like Trouble. And we’d kinda love to see Marvel get real weird with it, and get somebody who can do trashy right. Why not float some money Ryan Murphy’s way and see what kind of Gossip Girl/Marvel hybrid he can cook up with the salacious stories of salacious scandal? Before you naysayers write the idea off completely, remember that “trash” works because, as John Waters would note, bad is better than boring. And after Iron Fist and Inhumans, Marvel has a real issue with boring.

(COULD GET) YOUNG AVENGERS

While the Young Avengers may not be on the top of anybody’s “must have” list, they’re probably the most logical choice for Phase 4. The contracts of all the original cast are up after Avengers 4, and a lot of them have other interests. Chris Evans is currently stretching his stage legs in a play by Oscar winner and somehow The Adventures of Rocky & Bullwinkle screenwriter Kenneth Lonergan. Mark Ruffalo is heavily active in various environmental causes. Robert Downey Jr. is probably looking to spread his wings with, who knows, The Judge 2: Judge Harder?

The point is, Marvel is gonna need a new crew to take the place of the original lineup, and what better to replace the old Avengers than the Young Avengers? Cassie Lang is already in the MCU, a rebooted Vision isn’t out of the realm of possibility, and introducing the Skrull in Captain Marvel opens the door for Hulkling. Some might wonder whether audiences would be receptive to lesser known characters like Miss America or Patriot, but let’s not be too quick to dismiss them. Not too long ago, Iron Man was a virtually unknown entity, and people expected Guardians of the Galaxy to be a box office nightmare. Maybe there’s room in people’s hearts for Wiccan after all.

(NEVER GET) KA-ZAR

Marvel hasn’t shied away from acknowledging its earliest characters when it can. Obviously Captain America has made his MCU debut, but they even snuck in a reference to the original Human Torch by way of a costume hidden in Howard Stark’s grand expo in First Avenger. While Sub Mariner would surely make an appearance if his rights weren’t tangled up in a thousand different directions, there’s another character who harkens back to Marvel’s “Timely” days that will likely never see the light of day: Ka-Zar!

The real shame is there are some pretty wild stories to tell with Ka-Zar, a character who writers are still finding ways to re-invent.

Ka-Zar, in his original incarnation, was little more than a Tarzan rip-off, a “white man raised in a savage land” named David Rand (no relation to the other notable “white man in a foreign land” trope Danny Rand). From that, you can probably take a guess at why Ka-Zar would be tricky to adapt, but just read any character bio, which will surely include lines like “…his father was killed by the barbaric Man-Ape natives of the Savage Land,” and it’s pretty clear. The real shame is there are some pretty wild stories to tell with Ka-Zar, a character who writers are still finding ways to re-invent. However, while Ryan Coogler and co. were able to work around the problematic nature of M’Baku the “Man Ape”, the roots of Ka-Zar might be too hard to rewrite.

(COULD GET) THE SENTRY

The Sentry, conceived by Paul Jenkins and Rick Veitch and debuting in 2000, is one of the most fascinating comic book conceits in recent memory (so fascinating they pretty much repeated it recently with Voyager, but hey, we’re not judging). The idea that a character had existed throughout the entire history of the Marvel universe, only to be forgotten, would have been enough to intrigue most Marvel fans. The extra mile the team went to not only create an in-universe fictional history but a fictionalized publication history made the “addition” of Sentry so much more fun for fans following along.

The MCU could have a lot of fun introducing a character like Sentry into Phase 4. The studio has already toyed with viral marketing in the past, having Darren Cross interview by Wired to plug Ant-Man or crafting a full serialized collection of news stories from the fictional WHIH Newsfront to bring viewers into the world of Captain America: Civil War. It would be amazing to watch a months long marketing campaign that Forrest Gump-style adds The Sentry into clips from The Avengers, to see doctored Kimmel appearances of, say, Vince Vaughn talking about his 10 years of playing Robert Reynolds, or “behind the scenes” footage of various MCU actors heaping praise on a costar we know we’d never seen before.

(NEVER GET) SLAPSTICK

We’ll get a Black Widow or Ms. Marvel movie because their fans are vocal and plentiful, and Marvel hears them loud and clear; which is why we’ll also never get a Slapstick movie. Now, if you’re saying “Hey, wait a minute, I love Slapstick. I bought all six issues of the 2016 book”, well cool, we just found the one other person who did. Despite being a wild, inventive and compelling character, Slapstick has had two chances to catch on with Marvel readers and both failed to grab more than a handful of eager eyes.

Of course, there’s also the issue of his similarity to another cartoonish comic book hero. Slapstick, who debuted in November of 1992, employs Looney Tunes-esque gags and bends his reality to cartoonish degrees in order to defeat his foes, exhibiting a manic and frenetic persona all the while. Now, we don’t blame you if reading that calls to mind a certain ‘90s comic book movie with an equally cartoonish protagonist, 1994’s The Mask. In fact, the original Mask comic was published only a year prior to Slapstick’s debut. However, with the iconic Jim Carrey film still keeping its character in some semblance of relevance, it’s hard to imagine Marvel would want to risk a tentpole film on a character that could be derided as a ripoff.

(COULD GET) NOVA

In terms of the cosmic side of Phase 4, Nova seems like a no-brainer. Not only have fans been clamoring for the character since Guardians of the Galaxy first hit screens, and journalists have been hounding Kevin Feige and James Gunn at every turn, but Marvel has now set itself up perfectly to bring Nova into the MCU, and it has done it right under our noses in a little film called Avengers: Infinity War.

In a tossed off line, Thanos explains that he destroyed Xandar in order to get the Power Stone. That means a lot in terms of us finally getting Nova!

You’ll remember that Rhomann Dey resided on Xandar last we saw him, and while film-only fans may only know him as “Steve Brule in a spacesuit”, True Believers will recall Rhomann’s greatest role in the Marvel universe. As the last survivor of Xandar, Rhomann imparts onto Richard Rider the power of the Nova Corp, making him the first Nova. Of course, while there have been several “fan-castings” for Richard Rider, including a strong push behind Firefly’s Nathan Fillion, there’s always a chance Marvel may want to skew younger and skip over Rider entirely. Indeed, it would be fun in Phase 4 to watch Peter Parker have to take on the role of elder statesman to help Sam Alexander get adjusted to the hero life.

(NEVER GET) RAWHIDE KID

Lost silent film historians (and we’re sure that’s a huge portion of our readership) might recall that there was in fact a film called The Rawhide Kid back in 1927. Unrelated to the later Marvel character, The Rawhide Kid was described as an “ethnic” film that proudly claimed to depict both “a Jew” and “an Irish”. And as bad as that sounds, we’re gonna go out on a limb and say whatever it was, it was probably less offensive or stereotypical than whatever a Rawhide Kid movie would look like.

You see, while in today’s still-not-perfect media landscape, gay characters are allowed to have, say, three dimensional personalities, and defining traits beyond their sexuality, that wasn’t always the case. After centuries of simply pretending gays didn’t exist, pop culture finally came around to the realization that inclusion was important, so long as that inclusion limited gays exclusively to the role of “libido-fueled quip machines.” Thus we wound up with a “revamped” Rawhide Kid for the adult oriented MAX line where the Kid spoke in so-called “limp-wristed Toodles,” critiqued people’s fashion and made every possible allusion to the fact that he enjoyed sleeping with other men. Like looking back on the blaxploitation of the ‘70s, the Rawhide Kid books of the early 2000s haven’t aged well, and it’s hard to imagine Marvel would waste screen time on a character that’s less Love, Simon and more I Now Pronounce You Chuck And Larry.

(COULD GET) SECRET INVASION

How could the MCU possibly go bigger than Infinity War? What could pose a bigger threat than Thanos, a character who has been looming over the Marvel Cinematic Universe for almost a decade now? Well, what if the real threat was slowly building right before our eyes, and no one even knew? What if the real enemy was hiding in their ranks, waiting to strike? If Phase 4 needs an “event” film to rival Civil War, there’s no better choice than Secret Invasion.

Released in 2008, Secret Invasion built up anticipation with viral marketing, including a now seemingly lost Myspace video series, hinting at the idea that no one could be trusted. Sure enough, it turned out that the Skrull had been slowly replacing the population of Earth Invasion of the Body Snatchers style. This kind of paranoia-thriller has always played well in sci-fi cinema, from classic films like John Carpenter’s The Thing or They Live to serialized stories like the revived Battlestar Galactica. Fans who’ve dug through every frame of Guardians of the Galaxy to find an oft-teased Easter Egg would relish in the chance to pour through the full MCU to find the exact moment each character was replaced. Add in Captain Marvel introducing the Skrull to the MCU and the presumed revival of several “dead” characters in Avengers 4 as the perfect cover for the Skrull to take someone’s place, and Secret Invasion seems an obvious Phase 4 choice.

(NEVER GET) SQUADRON SUPREME

It’s unlikely Marvel is going to dip into the idea of alternate universes anytime soon, considering how much effort producers have put into establishing the one they already have. And considering their fairly cordial relationship with rival/desperate imitator the DCEU, they wouldn’t want to dunk on them by doing a movie that’s simultaneously a better Justice League than Justice League and a deconstruction of the very concept of a “Justice League.”

But just because Marvel is too polite to do it doesn’t mean we don’t desperately want a Squadron Supreme movie!

Though the Squadron Supreme had been around since 1971, it wasn’t until Marc Gruenwald took on his 12-issue miniseries in 1985 that the Squadron Supreme became a must-read team. A year before Watchmen changed comics forever, Gruenwald was already using a slew of thinly-veiled superheroes like Hyperion and Nighthawk to explore the ultimately totalitarian nature of the superhero, humanity’s innate attraction to and corruption by power, and whether ultimately all power structures subsist on the idea the “might means right.” Zack Snyder’s adaptation of Watchmen came too early to function as an examination of a superhero cinema boom that hadn’t yet happened, and Captain America: Civil War became too bogged down in Bucky to get too into the ideas of tyranny and government overreach. Squadron Supreme would be the perfect opportunity to explore those ideas, especially at a time when Hollywood escapism is giving way to self-examination once more.

The post Phase 4 MCU: 12 Things We May See (And 13 Marvel Will Never Let Us Have) appeared first on CBR.

Deadpool 2’s Zazie Beetz Agrees With You: Domino Needs an Origin Story

Deadpool 2’s Zazie Beetz Agrees With You: Domino Needs an Origin Story

WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for Deadpool 2, in theaters now.


While Deadpool 2 continued the exploits of Ryan Reynolds’ titular hero, it also introduced fans to new characters while laying the groundwork for Fox’s X-Force movie. We met Cable (Josh Brolin), a time-traveling soldier who clashed with Deadpool as he came back to the past to save his family, as well as Zazie Beetz’s luck-manipulating Domino.

Domino factored into Wade’s special-ops X-Force team in the film, but we didn’t get much insight into her backstory, apart from her special ability being the power of luck. Well, if Beetz has her way, she’d love for audiences to see the gun-toting heroine’s origin story.

RELATED: The Dead Pool: Which Characters Die in Deadpool 2?

“I would love to see an origin story. I would like to see where Domino came from, because it is kind of a dark and interesting background,” Beetz said in an exclusive interview with CBR. “With her luck, she doesn’t really have to worry if things are going to go her way or not, because they just do. Which I think lends itself to a lightheartedness and a light-footedness in everything.”

In the comics, Domino was engineered as part of a government program, only to escape and become a mercenary. She worked alongside Cable on the mercenary team called Six Pack, which eventually led Cable to the formation of X-Force. But in Deadpool 2, Domino helps Wade fight off Cable in order to save the soul of the foul-mouthed Russell, a young mutant leaning towards becoming a villain. It’s this dark nature of the action-comedy franchise which Beetz maintained would suit her character well.

“I think it can also lend itself to, [she] kind of doesn’t really care about anything at all, because she doesn’t have to… that was sort of an interesting place to explore,” Beetz said in regards to Domino’s origins. “Also, her past is really dark, and I think she sort of has to let go of a bunch of stuff. Things work out. That is fun — it lightens when things go super-dark.”

RELATED: Deadpool 2 Handles Time Travel Better Than X-Men: Days of Future Past

Directed by David Leitch, Deadpool 2 stars Ryan Reynolds as Deadpool, Brianna Hildebrand as Negasonic Teenage Warhead, Leslie Uggams as Blind Al, Stefan Kapičić as the voice of Colossus, and Karan Soni as Dopinder, with newcomers Zazie Beetz as Domino, Josh Brolin as Cable and Julian Dennison as Russell. The film is playing in theaters everywhere.

The post Deadpool 2’s Zazie Beetz Agrees With You: Domino Needs an Origin Story appeared first on CBR.

Bendis’ Invincible Iron Man Finale May Reverse a Civil War II Tragedy

Bendis’ Invincible Iron Man Finale May Reverse a Civil War II Tragedy

One of the inciting incidents in Marvel’s Civil War II event was James “War Machine” Rhodes’ death at the hands of the Mad Titan Thanos. The loss of Rhodes split Iron Man and Captain Marvel down a philosophical line, with Carol Danvers in favor of predictive judgment before a crime is committed, and Tony Stark heavily against it.

Before Brian Michael Bendis departs Marvel for DC Comics in an exclusive agreement, the writer looks to be setting events in motion that will culminate in War Machine’s revival in a preview of Invincible Iron Man #600.

RELATED: Invincible Iron Man: There’s No Way You Guessed Riri Williams’ Mystery Recruiter

After having a near-death experience of his own in Civil War II, Tony was able to save his own life, thanks to the many modifications he’d made to his DNA over the years. Of course, this gets Tony thinking: If he was able to bring himself back from the dead, can he do the same for Rhodey? Which then begs the question of should he? Is this something Rhodey would even be comfortable with?

Invincible Iron Man #600 isn’t the only time War Machine’s return has been mentioned recently. The title will be relaunched by writer Dan Slott and artist Valerio Schiti in Tony Stark: Iron Man for Marvel’s “Fresh Start,” and the solicitation text for Issue #2 also teases the possibility of Rhodey returning to life.

Bendis has big things planned for his final Marvel comic (for now). Along with the return of a forgotten X-Men character, the writer also promised one more major creation before heading to DC. Could this creation be a new identity for James Rhodes? If Tony winds up tinkering with Rhodey’s remains to bring him back to life, the result could be an entirely new War Machine.

RELATED: Invincible Iron Man Rekindles The Mystery of Tony Stark’s Father

Invincible Iron Man #600 goes on sale May 23 from Marvel Comics.

The post Bendis’ Invincible Iron Man Finale May Reverse a Civil War II Tragedy appeared first on CBR.

Quivering In Fear: The 20 Most Dangerous Fighters In The Arrowverse

Quivering In Fear: The 20 Most Dangerous Fighters In The Arrowverse

The CW has successfully built quite an empire with the Arrowverse shows. The flagship show, Arrow, just got renewed for a seventh season. The Flash will also be back next fall, as will his crossover pal Supergirl. The Flash experimented with a non-speedster villain in its fourth season, while Supergirl’s third season introduced the formidable World Killers. In both shows, the fate of the future is currently still unknown. Legends of Tomorrow has hit its stride with an entertaining third season, so we’ll have more Beebo to look forward in the fall.

In addition to crossovers, one of the reasons why we like these shows so much is the all the action scenes! Explosions aside, the Arrowverse has got an interesting mix of fighting styles. In Arrow, we get a lot of brutal hand to hand combat, while Team Flash uses a lot of tech and powers. Supergirl has a fun combination of powered and unpowered fighters, and Legends of Tomorrow is led by a former assassin. All of these shows have different types of fighters, so we have to ask: who are the best ones in the Arrowverse? Here at CBR, we’ve ranked the most skilled and dangerous Arrowverse fighters.

JOHN DIGGLE

John Diggle in ArrowJohn Diggle, codename Spartan, is one of the original members of Team Arrow. He went from working for Oliver to considering Oliver as a brother. This season, Team Arrow has had some shake-ups. The most significant ones involve John. He’s the Green Arrow, then he’s benched, and then he reverts back to Spartan. There was obviously some resentment on his part for Oliver not giving up the Green Arrow role completely. Dinah, Curtis, and Rene already had their doubts about Oliver’s leadership, which lead to some conflict and them forming their own team. John, on the other hand, was loyal to Oliver until they got into a fight this season. Insults were thrown, as well as fists.

Diggle served in the military and was a bodyguard, so he already had knowledge of live combat. He regularly spars with Oliver and the other Team Arrow members. When it comes to Team Arrow, if you can keep up with Oliver, you’re a skilled fighter. Diggle can not only keep up with Oliver, but can land some blows on him as well. While his weapon of choice is a firearm, he has very strong arms to effectively knock someone out. In addition to his knowledge of firearms, he’s also proficient at stick fighting and knives, making him a competent fighter.

NYSSA AL GHUL

Nyssa al Ghul in ArrowNyssa al Ghul has many connections to Team Arrow. She was, until recently, technically married to Oliver. She is a former lover of Sara Lance’s. Her half-sister, Talia, helped train Oliver. Nyssa is the League of Assassins’ former leader, and she is the one who decided to disband it. The training to be in the League of Assassins is grueling to say the least, and if you survive it, you are considered to be one of the most skilled fighters in the world.

Nyssa is a ruthless fighter, but she’s got a lot of heart. When Sara died, she swore a blood oath to avenge her death. Like other members of the League of Assassins, Nyssa is highly skilled at archery and fighting with a sword. As a daughter of Ra’s al Ghul, she likely had more extensive training. Which is seen in how she’s able to hold her own against Oliver and Malcolm Merlyn. However, though she has a formidable fighting spirit and is incredibly fast, Oliver and Malcolm Merlyn are reliably able to best her in a fight. But, she can throw shade like no one else. One of her highlights this season is her calling Oliver “husband” repeatedly in front of Felicity. That’s a burn not even the Lazarus Pit can fix.

MON-EL

Mon-El in SupergirlThe Supergirl fandom has mixed feelings about Mon-El right now. On the one hand, at the end of last season, we rooted for Mon-El and Kara to reunite somehow. On the other hand, we did not expect him to come back years later (in his time) and married. Oh yeah, and he was living in the distant future. His presence on the show is tricky as it still causes Kara some unease, despite however awesome his wife Imra may be. Kara put a lot of time into her relationship with Mon-El, but she also took some time to train the guy too.

Mon-El took his training with Supergirl and improved upon it in his time in the future. He’s now able to show her new techniques, including how to use a cape to disarm someone. It is a padawan turned master type of situation, which, while frustrating for Kara, shows how skilled he has become in fighting. In addition to his super strength and speed, with his Legion ring, Mon-El can also fly. This makes him a reliable fighting partner for Kara if she needs additional help. He also helps by analyzing other’s fighting styles, such as Reign’s, to find their weaknesses.

ZOOM

Zoom in The FlashZoom was The Flash’s season two villain. He’s a meta-human speedster from Earth-2 who posed as a friend to Team Flash to take Barry’s speed away. His worst crime? Getting Caitlyn to have feelings for him as Jay Garrick, this is in addition to killing loads of people. He is a true psychopath, as he was able to convince everyone that Zoom and Jay Garrick were two separate people. The ultimatum he gave Caitlyn was vile: stay with me and be spared, or join Team Flash and not be spared.

Zoom’s psychosis made him an incredibly dangerous villain. Coupled with his fighting skills and powers, he was a difficult villain for Team Flash to defeat. Zoom was a savage fighter; he’s even got claws on his gloves. His move of choice is to snap spines and necks, which he is able to do with his immense strength. Remember all those cops whose necks he snapped at Jitters? That was a shocking move, and luckily Joe was spared that fate. In the end, Zoom’s fate was to serve at the will of the Speed Force. After Barry outwitted him, Time Wraiths descended on Zoom to turn him into the Black Flash.

MALCOLM MERLYN

Malcolm Merlyn in ArrowMalcolm Merlyn is another former leader of the League of Assassins. After being the main villain of Arrow’s first season, he had an on again off again relationship with Team Arrow. He revealed himself as Thea Queen’s biological father and helped train her. But, he joined forces with Damien Darhk and the Legion of Doom to find the Spear of Destiny. When that timeline was reversed thanks to the Legends, Malcolm helped out Team Arrow on Lian Yu. It was there that he sacrificed himself on a landmine to save his daughter.

Now, this isn’t the first time that Malcolm Merlyn has “died.” He has had surprising reappearances in the show, and we didn’t see a body. While we can’t be 100% sure that he’s dead, we know that he had the skills to survive almost any conflict. In his training by the League of Assassins, he’s an expert archer and swordsman. He was able to sneak in and out of places easily, hence his League nickname, “The Magician.” Additionally, he’s great at deception, which is great to use as both a CEO and a fighter. He’s got many years on other excellent fighters like Oliver and Nyssa. This is good for fighting experience but bad for keeping up with the youths.

J’ONN J’ONZZ

J'onn J'onzz in SupergirlJ’onn J’onzz is one of two living Green Martians. The Green Martians’ powers are impressive. However, equally as impressive is J’onn’s empathy and leadership abilities. As the head of the DEO, J’onn has a lot to juggle and many difficult shots to call. However, he maintains the respect of those who work for him and is even considered one of the gang. He and his father have shown up to get-togethers at Kara’s place and karaoke, for example. They’ve even had some bonding time with Alex, which eventually helped J’onn deal with his father having the Green Martian form of dementia.

As a Green Martian, J’onn is extremely powerful. In addition to strength, J’onn can shapeshift, which if used for evil could potentially be very dangerous. He can pose as any person he wishes too. He can also phase through walls and barriers, which again, if he were a villain, there’d be no stopping him from getting whatever he wants. He’s also got telepathic and telekinetic powers. So basically, he could go wherever he wants and make you think whatever he wants. Thankfully, J’onn is one of the good guys. Should he ever go bad, we should be very very afraid.

EOBARD THAWNE

Eobard Thawne in The FlashEobard Thawne has been a recurring baddie for Arrowverse. His history with Barry Allen is complicated and involves a lot of timelines. Initially, in the future, Eobard idolized the Flash and created an incident for him to get similar powers to him. Then, when he travels to the past and gets stuck there, he assumes Dr. Harrison Wells’ identity. He’s also the one who kills Nora Allen upon traveling further back in time. When Barry tries to prevent this, he creates Flashpoint. But, Thawne has persevered, even while being hunted by Time Wraiths since technically he shouldn’t exist.

While his perseverance is noteworthy, we should also take a look at Eobard Thawne’s fighting skills. We’ve seen him fight Oliver Queen even without powers and survive, which is a great entry on the fighter resume. Thawne’s fighting style is best described as analytical. He knows exactly where to hit to do the most damage or to incapacitate someone. Added to this deliberate style of fighting is his powers. His powers are the opposite of The Flash, thus earning him his nickname of The Reverse Flash. As such, he is still a formidable match for any of the Arrowverse’s heroes and was last seen abandoning the final battle of “Crisis on Earth-X.”

TALIA AL GHUL

Talia al Ghul in ArrowTalia is another of Ra’s al Ghul’s daughters, only she had a direct hand in training Oliver Queen. We learned about her in season five of Arrow, where in 2012 in Russia, she saved Oliver from an attack by the Bratva. She convinces Oliver that he needs to take the list his father gave him seriously, and she gives him a green hood and a bow. She was instrumental in creating what the Green Arrow would become. She’s not one to put down roots anywhere, as she is rather nomadic. However, she did found her own league similar to the League of Assassins.

Talia has trained both Oliver Queen and season five’s main antagonist Adrian Chase/Prometheus. Oliver’s fighting style would not be as effective if it weren’t for his time with Talia. She was trained by the League of Assassins as well, and thanks to the Lazarus Pit, she has been training probably since the ‘60s. In addition to the standard archery and swords training, Talia is also a master at repeated attacks. She was last seen in a fight with her sister Nyssa on Lian Yu, where Nyssa actually got the upper hand on her. However, it’s clear that Talia is the most dangerous of the two sisters. Talia is more level-headed, and therefore more cutthroat.

CHINA WHITE

China White in ArrowChina White is one of the Chinese Triad’s foremost assassins, and she has even assumed the role as their leader. The League of Assassins gets a lot of attention for being the best training ground for assassins, but China White is equally as effective as any of them. She was last seen getting arrested last season, but she has a history of escaping prisons. She may very well turn up again in the Arrowverse.

When it comes to hand to hand combat, China White is more than proficient. She was able to overpower John Diggle as well as Oliver on several occasions. While she has a sense of revenge, there’s no question that she’s cold-blooded. She shows mercy to none of her victims and expects none in return. She is surprised when Oliver spares her life, but he may come to regret that decision later. China’s trained in fighting with swords and knives, and she also knows how to shoot a firearm well. She is smart and stealthy. She can speak multiple languages, which means she can more easily convince others to do what she wants them to do. One of her highlights is being able to sneak up on Team Arrow without them noticing.

ASTRA

Astra in SupergirlDo not cross a military woman who believes in what she’s doing. General Astra is Kara’s aunt who also survived the destruction of Krypton. Astra is the one who tried to convince everyone that Krypton’s resources were depleting and would lead to its demise, but no one listened to her. She commits several crimes for what she believes is right, and her sister sentences her to the floating Kryptonian prison, Fort Rozz. A prison atmosphere made Astra even darker, which isn’t surprising since she was surrounded by Krypton’s worst criminals.

Astra is a dangerous woman with great close-range combat skills and conviction in what she believes. Astra’s powers are the same as Kara’s, but with the addition of advanced military training. While Kara is able to overpower her, it’s because Astra spared her in the first place. She almost kills J’onn J’onzz, who is also very strong and an expert fighter. She has the standard Kryptonian weaknesses, but Kara is her true weakness. When Non tells her that he used the Black Mercy on Kara, Astra tells Alex how to get Kara out of it. Astra’s is emotional not just because it’s the only family member left who knew Kara on Krypton, but because Alex is the one who deals the deadly blow.

SLADE WILSON

Slade Wilson in ArrowSlade Wilson is another fighter who has trained Oliver Queen. Slade was one of Oliver’s first trainers — he’s the one who took him from rich playboy to fighter. A lot of credit goes to Slade for Oliver’s combat skills as the Green Arrow. However, Slade turns into the adversary Deathstroke when he finds out Oliver chose to save Sara Lance over Shado. Slade vows to ruin Oliver’s life and uses the drug Mirakuru to heighten his skills. Slade eventually kills Oliver’s mother, Moira Queen, by impaling her with a sword, which is still one of the most brutal scenes in Arrow history.

Even though Slade has reformed, and even has an alliance with Oliver, he’s still a very dangerous fighter. He was definitely at his most dangerous on Mirakuru, where his speed, strength, stamina, and healing were all at high levels. Without the Mirakuru, Deathstroke is still dangerous. He excels at close-range fighting, which is seen in how he’s able to dispatch Talia’s league of fighters at the end of season five. He’s also skilled at stick fighting, which is one of the fighting aspects he trained Oliver in, as well as sword fighting and using firearms.

REIGN

Reign in SupergirlReign is one of the Kryptonian worldkillers, whose purpose is to bring darkness to the world. She doesn’t go around all day in a black face mask though — Reign’s human form is Samantha Arias. When Reign takes over, Sam literally goes to another place where she is vulnerable to Reign taking complete control over her. This is what complicates things: Sam is a good friend to Lena, Kara, and Alex, and she has a preteen daughter named Ruby whom she loves more than anything. Thoughts of her daughter are the only reason why Reign has been held back.

Lena Luthor ran some tests on Sam and discovered that when Reign emerges, Sam’s body goes through changes to house these Kryptonian powers. Reign’s powers appear to surpass Kara’s, which is seen in the battle where Kara bleeds and is violently defeated. Any villain that can put Supergirl in a coma is dangerous. Reign rains down powerful hits on Kara, and she’s got speed going for her as well. Speed and strength together make a deadly fighter, especially when you add even more powers. Reign’s heat vision is red and is stronger than Kara’s, which we see when she kills Livewire with it.

RA’S AL GHUL

Ra's al Ghul in ArrowThough Ra’s al Ghul, the Demon’s Head, is a title that is passed on to the leaders of the League of Assassins, this Ra’s al Ghul is known only by his title. He is the one we think of when we hear the name. He’s the father of Nyssa and Talia, who both grew up to League of Assassins trained themselves. During his own training, he spent some time with Damien Darhk, who would turn into one of the most powerful villains in the Arrowverse. Ra’s al Ghul’s most dangerous deeds seemingly involve Oliver Queen somehow.

Upon Sara Lance’s death, Oliver and Ra’s battled in a trial by combat. The end of this scene was shocking at the time: Ra’s impales Oliver and throws him off an icy cliff. He’s able to outfight Oliver because he has been training for much longer than he has (the true age of Ra’s is over 150 years old). When he hears about Oliver’s survival, he marks Oliver to ascend to the title of Ra’s al Ghul after him. Oliver goes through some training with Ra’s himself. In a bookend moment, the move Ra’s used to fatally wound Oliver is the one Oliver uses to kill Ra’s.

PROMETHEUS

Prometheus in ArrowPrometheus is the codename for Adrian Chase, the villain of Arrow’s fifth season. He posed as a friend to Oliver and worked with him as the District Attorney of Star City. All the while, Prometheus was plotting his revenge for the Hood killing his father years ago. The Star City media called Prometheus “the Throwing Star Killer,” as this is what he would use to kill citizens whose names were anagrams of names on Oliver’s list. As an extra burn to Oliver, the throwing stars were made from the metal of Oliver’s used arrows.

Prometheus, in his quest for revenge, sought out Talia al Ghul to receive the same training that Oliver did. When Prometheus and Oliver would fight, it would look like two equals fighting, which doesn’t happen often in Arrow. What makes him dangerous is his psychotic behavior. The fact that he can present himself as a normal empathetic person when he’s really plotting to kill a bunch of people is troubling. In their final battle, while Prometheus gets beaten by Oliver, he ends up killing himself to prove a final point to Oliver. It’s that level of extremity that makes Prometheus so dangerous, and we’re kind of okay he’s gone.

SUPERGIRL

SupergirlDangerous isn’t necessarily a word that you would associate with Supergirl. When describing Supergirl and Kara Danvers, we usually mention her compassion and love for humanity. It’s this compassion that makes her dangerous if someone threatens humans or a specific person she loves. When Alex was kidnapped, for example, Supergirl could barely contain her anger. When it comes to raw strength, Supergirl is superior to her powerful cousin, Superman, as she was able to defeat him in a fight. Additionally, when it comes to speed, she is at least equally as fast if not faster than metahuman speedsters. We see this when she faces Eobard Thawne and when she races for fun against Barry Allen.

Kara hasn’t trained in fighting for long as she came out as Supergirl in her adult life. Her sister had a hand in training her, but it’s really Kara’s powers that that make her fighting skills dangerous. When she punches, she punches hard. When she comes at someone, she gets to them fast. The only villain who has soundly defeated her is Reign, but Kara is currently using her compassion for her friend Sam to get rid of Reign once and for all.

OLIVER QUEEN

Oliver Queen in ArrowOliver Queen has lead many lives for someone his age. He’s gone from immature playboy to mature father figure. Oliver Queen’s fighting style is an amalgamation of all those who have trained him. Though he started fighting later in his life, following his shipwreck on the island, he picks up fighting quite easily. He’s been trained by notable warriors like Deathstroke, Shado, Talia al Ghul, and Ra’s al Ghul, to name a few. He has escaped death many times, mostly by using his quick tactical intelligence and his fighting skills.

It’s interesting to note that Oliver has no superpowers, but he fights like he has them. His League of Assassins training helped with this, of course. Oliver’s specific fighting style appears to be a culmination of over a dozen martial arts, so we would worry about anyone getting in a close range fight with him. Oliver can move quickly using acrobatic techniques, and he can infiltrate and escape dangerous situations quickly. While he doesn’t have superspeed powers, he can fight quickly with strength — a lot of time, he only needs to land one hit on someone. Even when he’s unarmed and outnumbered, Oliver can punch his way out.

VANDAL SAVAGE

Vandal Savage in Legends of TomorrowVandal Savage has had many lifetimes to hone his powers and fighting prowess. In ancient Egypt, he was obsessed with high priestess Chay-Ara and plotted to murder her and her lover. Then, thanks to a meteor, he gained the power of immortality while the lovers were doomed to be reincarnated and murdered by him over and over for all time. It’s a dark backstory. Since ancient Egypt, he’s been up to no good.

Vandal Savage is one of the Arrowverse’s most overpowered villains. He’s one of few who could defeat Oliver Queen and all of the Legends, including Sara Lance. In his long life, he had gained much knowledge about everything needed to be a dangerous fighter including pressure points, medical knowledge, and knowledge of the occult. He is able to utilize magic for spells and to help him fight with the Staff of Horus. His other weapon of choice is knives, which he has a vast collection of and can wield expertly. His only flaw was his obsession with Chay-Ara, whom we meet as Kendra Saunders aka Hawkgirl. In fact, Chay-Ara is the only person who can kill him. For a while, it seemed like nothing could defeat him, which made Vandal Savage a man to be afraid of.

ALEX DANVERS

Alex Danvers in SupergirlOne of the most capable people in the Arrowverse is Dr. Alex Danvers. She’s a bio-engineer and has a lot of medical knowledge to treat her team after a fight. She has proven time and time again that she is a reliable person to turn to for scientific knowledge as well as advice. When J’onn needs advice regarding his father, he turns to Alex. And as Kara’s sister, Alex has listened to her fair share Kara’s issues. When Kara gets her heart broken, Alex is there for her even when she’s dealing with romantic issues herself.

As a DEO agent, Alex is trained in martial arts. The fact that she is a human doesn’t stop her from facing extraterrestrial threats head-on. Her bravery makes her one of the most dangerous fighters in the Arrowverse. She only recently got a special suit and weapons made. Before that, she fought in her standard DEO outfit with maybe a gun sometimes. Alex knows how to adapt in the middle of the fight. She even figures out how to use alien weapons when it’s available to her. Additionally, Kara wouldn’t have been as successful as Supergirl if it weren’t for Alex’s training.

DAMIEN DARHK

Damien DarkhDamien Darhk is a former League of Assassins member who went rogue and formed his own League. Unlike Ra’s al Ghul, Damien really leaned into learning about the occult. His presence on Arrow is what really turned the show from more reality based conflict (with the occasional metahuman here or there) to storylines that had magical components. Oliver has to learn how to fight against an already excellent fighter who has dark magic on his side. Though he’s not as old as Vandal Savage, he still has centuries worth of training, which is seen in how quickly he can dispatch most of the Arrowverse’s fighters.

Damien Darhk had an interesting storyline in Legends of Tomorrow this season where we saw more glimpses of his humanity in regards to the safety of his daughter, Nora. His character became more intriguing when he chose to ally himself with the Legends. He has moments of bonding with various characters, and in the end, he sacrifices himself for her. If it weren’t for his love for his daughter, there’s no way the Arrowverse would have been rid of him so easily. He was too powerful and too smart to be gotten rid of any other way other than his own choice.

SARA LANCE

Sara Lance Legends of TomorrowSara Lance is both feared and respected in the Arrowverse. Her roots started in Arrow as Laurel Lance’s younger sister who becomes the Black Canary. Sara is murdered, but her Black Canary legacy is still seen in the show. After her resurrection via the Lazarus Pit, Sara calls herself the White Canary. Because the Lazarus Pit creates bloodlust in its recipients, Sara has had to struggle with her desire to kill, which she does admirably. The ability for this character to go from a side character on Arrow to the star of her show Legends of Tomorrow speaks to how interesting and dangerous she is.

Thanks to resurrection and time travel, Sara has received multiple rounds of training with the League of Assassins. She regularly fights people bigger than her and wins. She has fought many of the Arrowverse’s top fighters, such as Oliver Queen, Malcolm Merlyn, Damien Darhk, and Vandal Savage. No one wants to go into a fight against Sara Lance; in fact, just training with her is intimidating. She’s trained to handle bo-staff fighting, swords, knives, and firearms. As the captain of the Waverider, Sara also has to make difficult sometimes life or death decisions for the crew. She does this by trusting her gut, which is how she fights as well.

The post Quivering In Fear: The 20 Most Dangerous Fighters In The Arrowverse appeared first on CBR.

The Rock & Jason Statham Getting a ‘Buddy Movie’ in Fast & Furious Spinoff

The Rock & Jason Statham Getting a ‘Buddy Movie’ in Fast & Furious Spinoff

Deadpool 2 director David Leitch describes the upcoming Fast & Furious spinoff starring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Jason Statham as a “buddy movie.”

In an interview with IGN, the Deadpool 2 and Hobbs and Shaw director likened the upcoming film to movies from the 80s and 90s like Lethal Weapon and 48 Hours.

RELATED: Fast & Furious Animated Series Races to Netflix

“They’re [buddy movies] ones that made me want to be a filmmaker in the first place,” Leitch said. “So to see the chemistry they [Johnson and Statham] had in the last Fast, and to see the potential that they could be… it was hard not to say yes, and say, let’s go do this.”

The film will see Johnson’s character, Luke Hobbs, and Statham’s Deckard Shaw team up, with events spinning out of last year’s The Fate of the Furious. The untitled film is set to hit theaters on July 26, 2019.

Leitch is awfully busy these days. Deadpool 2 hit theaters last week and has already broken the record for highest-grossing R-rated film on opening day with $53 million, eclipsing 2017’s It. The film sits at an 84 percent on Rotten Tomatoes and is set to push Avengers: Infinity War to the No. 2 spot at the box office this weekend.

RELATED: Ryan Reynolds Pushes For Deadpool Role in Fast & Furious Spinoff

Leitch is also on deck to direct an adaptation of the 2016 video game Tom Clancy’s The Division, starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Jessica Chastain.

The post The Rock & Jason Statham Getting a ‘Buddy Movie’ in Fast & Furious Spinoff appeared first on CBR.

Deadpool 2 Handles Time Travel Better Than X-Men: Days of Future Past

Deadpool 2 Handles Time Travel Better Than X-Men: Days of Future Past

WARNING: The following article contains major spoilers for Deadpool 2, in theaters now.


Fans have had plenty of issues with Fox’s X-Men franchise, from costumes to character arcs to the use of time travel in 2014’s X-Men: Days of Future Past. Many hoped it would help to fix the series’ continuity, but instead it came off as little more than excuse to give Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine another starring role. However, where the studio failed there, it succeeds in Deadpool 2, as time travel is used in a more practical, and relatable, manner, and in a fashion that suits the characters involved.

In the 1981 “Days of Future Past” comics storyline, by Chris Claremont, John Byrne and Terry Austin, the telepath Rachel Summers projects the consciousness of an older Kitty Pryde for a dystopian alternate future back through time so she can possess the body of her younger self, and prevent the event that leads to the rise of the Sentinels. The film deviates from that premise, instead using Kitty to send Bishop and then Wolverine into the past. What’s shocking is Kitty, who’s a phase-shifter, has never exhibited such abilities, so we’re thrown off. One would think Bryan Singer & Co. could have used a psychic to make that sort of time travel work seem plausible.

In Deadpool 2, it’s more straightforward, and faithful to the characters. Cable (Josh Brolin) uses his time-slider to travel back to kill Russell (Julian Dennison), to ensure the kid doesn’t grow up to kill Cable’s family. In terms of getting their time-travel arc right, director David Leitch and the writers demonstrate how simplicity works. Firs, we understand the mechanics of Cable’s time-traveling device, even though we’re not given much insight into the mechanics. All we really see is it’s hardcore tech that functions like a watch, where you set a time and aim to land close to the targeted period. Hey, he’s from the future; trust him, it works.

RELATED: The Dead Pool: Which Characters Die in Deadpool 2?

What stands out most of all is how relatable the slider is used; it’s not like where Days of Future Past sent a random mutant back in Bishop, whom none of the X-Men would have recognized. Deadpool 2 is more calculated, sending Cable back as a man who’s always been hunting Firefist. In his case, it’s just as much about avenging his family as it is saving the world, so we connect to his motivation. Eventually, Cable’s brought back to the light, as he and Ryan Reynolds’ Wade Wilson prevent Russell from turning evil. However, it comes at a cost: Wade’s life. But it’s in this moment we see just how smartly time travel is written in, because it doesn’t just save our heroes, it opens up so much room to explore down the line.

After Deadpool takes a bullet for Russell, Cable’s future and his family are saved. But instead of returning to them, Cable browses the timeline and opts to save Wade from the lethal bullet. Ultimately, Wade lives, Russell is still redeemed, Cable’s future is restored, and the time traveler chooses to stay in the present to what we know will lead to missions alongside Domino and Wade.

Then comes the mid-credits scene, where Deadpool juices up Cable’s time-slider, and uses it in ways that are more selfish and less heroic. He goes on a time-traveling carousel, preventing mistakes such as Fox’s awful first take on Deadpool and also stopping Reynolds from bringing Green Lantern to life. Cut through the comedy, however, and you’ll see he’s doing everything the average person would do. His actions aren’t deep; they’re about a man on a mission to make his world whole again; similar to Cable. This is evidenced by Wade saving his girlfriend Vanessa and a former teammate, Peter.

And this is why time travel in Deadpool 2 works: It’s something we’d all do if given the chance — save the universe, but not before we ensure our loved ones are safe and sound. Sure, heroism counts, but so does family, and nothing’s wrong with putting the latter first.

Directed by David Leitch, Deadpool 2 stars Ryan Reynolds as Deadpool, Brianna Hildebrand as Negasonic Teenage Warhead, Leslie Uggams as Blind Al, Stefan Kapičić as the voice of Colossus, and Karan Soni as Dopinder, with newcomers Zazie Beetz as Domino, Josh Brolin as Cable and Julian Dennison as Russell. The film is playing in theaters everywhere.

The post Deadpool 2 Handles Time Travel Better Than X-Men: Days of Future Past appeared first on CBR.

Nationwide strike of launch provider ULA ends as union approves new contract – Florida Today


Florida Today

Nationwide strike of launch provider ULA ends as union approves new contract
Florida Today
A nearly two-week strike of United Launch Alliance came to an end Saturday afternoon when hundreds of union members voted to approve a revised contract with the launch services provider. About 600 members of the International Association of Machinists ...
United Launch Alliance IAM Employees Approve New ContractSpace Ref (press release)


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UN, EU call for global action to protect bees

The United Nation's food agency and the European Union on Saturday called for global action to protect pollinators, and bees in particular, which are crucial for ensuring food security.

Scholar: Dumping fossil fuels by 2050 needed to save climate

Getting rid of fossil fuels by mid-century and making the switch to large-scale renewable energy sources and nuclear power offers the best chance of meeting the climate change targets set out by the Paris accord, a prominent American economist said Friday.

Latest lava flow destroys 4 homes, sparks evacuation prep

Lava creeping across roadways destroyed four homes and left dozens of others in the shadow of Hawaii's Kilauea volcano isolated Saturday, forcing more residents to plan for a possible evacuation.

Hubble Space Telescope: Astronomers Release Stunning Images of Nearby Galaxies – Yahoo News


Yahoo News

Hubble Space Telescope: Astronomers Release Stunning Images of Nearby Galaxies
Yahoo News
Astronomers have released images from the most comprehensive ultraviolet light survey of nearby star-forming galaxies to date. For the project, known as LEGUS (Legacy ExtraGalactic UV Survey), the researchers used the Wide Field Camera 3 and the ...
Hubble Space Telescope Surveys Young GalaxiesPatch.com

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Phys.Org -Mashable -Outer Places -Inverse
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15 Hilarious Fast And The Furious Memes

15 Hilarious Fast And The Furious Memes

“Life’s simple. You make choices and you don’t look back,” – Han Lue, Tokyo Drift. There are few lines the Fast and Furious franchise that touch a heart and mind quite like this one. The lines, however, are not the only memorable parts. While it take an interesting approach to its themes, the series is a story of friendship and family. From Dom — the leader of an illegal street racing gang — taking Brian — the undercover cop—under his wing, to the unexpected betrayal in the eighth movie in the franchise, The Fate of the Furious. Throughout it all, we’ve been with them every step of the way.

We’ve laughed, and we’ve cried and we’ve been astounded. From hilarity to heartbreak, we have become a part of the “ride or die” crew with Dom, Brian, Mia, Letty and Hobbs. The Fast and Furious franchise has been around for 17 years at this point, but it’s not over yet. With the 9th addition to the series being scheduled for release in 2020, there is never a lack of memes for this franchise. Today, we’ve collected 15 memes that will make you laugh, possibly cry, but will certainly have you nostalgic and ready to start reliving them all from the beginning.

SHIFTING GEARS

“Dear Dom and Crew, Cars don’t actually work like that. Love, Anyone who has ever watched a single Fast and the Furious movie.” If there was only one thing fans and critics alike would ever be able to agree on, it’s that the gear shifting in this franchise is just a tiny bit ridiculous. A normal car will typically have about six options on the gearshift, with older versions having only about five. When you watch the races or high-speed chases in these movies, it isn’t hard to tell that they are shifting gears a lot more than they should be. Even someone who knows nothing about the technical mechanics and workings of cars (like ourselves) can’t help but chuckle any time they watch these scenes because it’s just obvious that it’s a Hollywood thing.

Whether you find this entertaining or annoying, you can’t deny that it’s a classic part of the Fast and Furious franchise, from the original Fast and the Furious to the most recent Fate of the Furious. While there isn’t too much information floating around about the ninth instalment besides its release date for the year 2020, we can all be sure that the classic gearshift madness will be a part of that, as well.

SHOTGUN

No matter who calls shotgun, there’s almost inevitably a struggle over it. Sometimes that struggle is verbal, sometimes it’s physical. Sometimes it’s just a race to the car, but other times — according to this meme — it involves jumping to one moving car from another! This stunt, like most stunts in these movies, definitely falls under the category of “Do not try this at home.”  We do have to admit, though, that this scene, where Brian O’Conner (played by the late Paul Walker) jumps from the Honda Civic onto the semi while they’re both speeding down the freeway is pretty dang epic.

Obviously, this meme is just meant to poke fun at how far “calling shotgun” can go, but wouldn’t it be hilarious if that was actually the reason behind this entire scene? If the “furious” part was all over someone stealing shotgun? While you should certainly leave stunts like this to the trained professionals, we do have to give some props to Brian for realizing that even he shouldn’t try this without a rope tied around him — and shot into the truck to make sure he has a better chance of making it all the way there in one piece.

DRIVING HOME

The Boromir meme is a classic staple for any meme collection. We couldn’t just leave it out of this list, could we? It wouldn’t feel right. This being the most popular version for Fast and Furious, we decided it definitely makes a very fitting addition to the list. Driving fast is fun, there’s really no denying that. It’s also really, really fun to watch movies where the pro and antagonists drive super fast and attempt all sorts of crazy, daring and dangerous maneuvers. We would be lying if we said we’d ever watched one of these movies and not thought “Man, we wish we could do that.” However, there are always those people who seem like they’re actually going to attempt something like Dom and his crew pull.

We’ve all seen them — the people weaving in and out of traffic going 30 miles per hour over the speed limit on the freeways, the ones who are constantly revving their engines at the stop lights; you know the ones. When many of us daydream about the Fast and Furious movies, we also think about insane driving, and vice versa. When you saw this, was there someone specific who popped into your head? There probably was… and that person is a menace, we tell you! A menace!

PURE NOSTALGIA

We will readily admit that the first instant we saw this one, we started dancing to the song that started playing in our heads. Only a few short seconds after that, though, we were hit with a strong wave of nostalgia. Not only did this meme beautifully encapsulate the juxtaposition of the early and later movies, it also plays to the sense of nostalgia and hope that exists in each human being. There is something innate in each of us that causes us to simultaneously hope for increase and betterment in the future, and also miss and long for the simplicity of the past.

Was this the purpose behind the creation of this meme? Probably not. Did its creator expect that anyone would ever begin pondering the human condition after seeing it? Also, no — well, most likely, at least; we don’t want to cast aspersions as to the philosophical acumen of its creator. Either way, and however it was meant to be taken, that is what happened. Surely the main focus in its creation was geared more towards the juxtaposition in the series itself. This comparison itself is an elegant tribute by the producers to Paul Walker and the role he played in the series. They deserve applause for that, if nothing else.

BUCKLE UP

Do you remember when you were very first learning how to drive? Getting behind the wheel, in the drivers’ seat for the first time and, if you’re like a lot of people, having a very nervous parent in the passenger seat beside you? Most of us have experienced this, and we bet most of you remember it (we certainly do). We personally think that this experience in part leads to the phenomenon described in the first half of this meme. Almost everyone will drive with extra care and caution when their parents are in the car with them — sometimes this extra caution borders on laughable, especially when the person is a safe and cautious driver anyway.

That same feeling of caution that dictates how you drive with your parents doesn’t necessarily carry over to driving with other people, especially your best friends, and that is the feeling to which the second half draws your attention. Driving fast, as we already mentioned, is quite fun even on your own but there is something about driving fast with your best friends with you and some epic music from your favorite bands on the radio that is hard to beat. This meme is a perfect illustration of both of these feelings.

THROWBACK

We don’t know that there is any way we could write an entry that would do any better of highlighting why this meme is great than just looking at it. Really, this is pretty much straightforward gold. But hey, we’ll try anyway. Memes that have very prevalent vintage themes are wonderful to begin with, but we don’t know what we love more about this one specifically. Is it the fact that someone saw this picture and one of the first thoughts to go through their head was something along the lines of “this would be a great Fast and Furious meme”? Or is it the fact that this picture exists — that it was able to be captured at all? Or is it simply the facial expressions? It’s truly hard to decide.

What we do know for certain, however, is that we are very grateful for each of those things individually and collectively. There’s a chance that this is one of the memes that is poking fun at the fact that this franchise has lasted so long, but we have another meme that we think embodies that better. Another thing that’s undeniable though is that this is a meme we will never forget.

PROGRESSION

The truth in this meme hits home for everyone who has watched the series. This meme expresses the difference in the main plot points and conflicts in the early installations versus the later ones. At first, this might be an upsetting progression for some fans of the early movies. However, it is certainly a tribute to character growth and development. The fourth movie, Fast and Furious, marks the “coming of age,” so to speak, of this series and these characters. The first three installations to this franchise — The Fast and the Furious, 2 Fast 2 Furious and The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift — set the stage and introduced us to basic conflicts this lifestyle would create.

Although one may argue that later ones are “darker” than the earlier instalments, it can be countered that it is also a typecast of our individual lives and how we are often put in the position that we must make harder choices and deal with more lasting consequences as life goes on. As these characters grow, the audience can grow and learn alongside them. Yes, it’s fiction. Yes, we shouldn’t be basing life decisions off fiction (at least not Fast and Furious fiction). However, can’t it also be argued that as we observe people, both real and fictional, making these difficult choices, we will be more prepared to make our own?

HOLLYWOOD AND SEQUELS

It’s no secret that Hollywood loves its sequels. Some might say it loves its sequels a little too much. The Fast and Furious series is no exception. The Fast and the Furious was released in 2001. We’re sure when it was released, none of the fans expected that it would still be thriving after 17 years — with at least one more sequel in sight! To put this in perspective, the first movie in this series came out at the same time as Jimmy Neutron: The Movie and Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. The next one is set to come out in the same year as the third Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, and Indiana Jones 5. A lot has happened and a lot has changed cinematically from then to now and more is sure to change over the next two years.

Don’t let the fact that some of these series mentioned in relation to the Fast and Furious series have new installations continuing to come out, or started before this series, fool you. Those series have had substantial hiatuses. Don’t forget that the third and fourth Indiana Jones movies were released 19 years apart! The fans of Dom and his crew have had a steady stream of storyline to keep them satisfied these entire 17 years.

DARING MANEUVERS

Sometimes the antics that people pull are truly astounding. This is another meme, the circumstances surrounding which we are just baffled by. There is no way the driver of this car didn’t realize what was happening. You don’t end up underneath the trailer of a semi-truck in your car and wonder, “Hey, how’d I get here?” Was this truly another instance where people got a little too carried away with the stunts of Fast and Furious, thinking they can do it, too? Is this someone managing to capture a picture of a stunt driver in the middle of a normal road? Who knows.

While this is daring and risky maneuver is made humorous meme, the photo itself can also illustrate how the realities of life can be skewed by perception. Although the manner in which the message is portrayed is very different, there are undertones of the same message found through the most recent film, The Fate of the Furious. This installation of the series reminds us that each of our lives is influenced by the perceptions of those around us and can change at the drop of a hat. We may never know what was going through this driver’s head, but we are certainly glad that someone was able to capture it.

THE ULTIMATE PUN

Maybe there’s a simple reason behind the franchise lasting so long. Maybe it all really is due to this, the ultimate pun that could possibly be made in relation to these movies. Now, just imagine production team meeting together while creating The Fast and the Furious and deciding if there were to be more installations of this storyline. Picture them sitting around a table and asking, “Well, how long is this story line going to last? What else can we do with it?” People are tossing around ideas until someone says, “Hey, we should make ten of them so we can call the last one “Fast10: Your Seatbelts.” Wouldn’t that be great?” is probably pretty slim. Stranger things have happened though, right?

There are a lot of possibilities and a fair bit of speculation about what the ninth movie is going to be titled, and whether the series is actually going to extend on after that point. Many of us expected the death of Paul Walker to mark the end of the franchise, but we were proven wrong. While it’s improbable that they are continuing the series for this sole purpose, it’s not impossible and there are many people out there who will probably be disappointed if the franchise passes up this opportunity.

PLAN B

Most of us have been there. Whether it’s high school or college, finals are rough. Sometimes it seems like there is no way you’re going to make it out alive, much less pass. All the late night study sessions, trying to cram every ounce of information possible into your brain because you have no idea what will be on the finals. All the nights of sleeping an hour or two a night because you just have to finish that study guide; it’s brutal. Thank goodness it only comes around once a semester!

When you’re going through any point in your life and times are getting harder and harder, sometimes it’s easy to just consider giving up. This scene, however, shows us that there is another alternative. Maybe your first plan doesn’t work out. Maybe your second, and third, and forth plans also don’t pan out. This scene reminds us in one of the most humorous ways possible that we can keep going and keep trying even when it seems like nothing on earth is going to work. The message of persistence is carried on throughout the entirety of the Fast and Furious franchise — Dom and his friends stick it out and see all of their projects to the end no matter what obstacles may stand in their way.

DID YOU KNOW?

This meme is one that definitely made us want to watch the movies again simply because it brought all of the actors and their characters that we love into the same frame. Now, we will admit without shame that we are very sentimental people here at CBR, and we tend to get nostalgic very easily. Perhaps that’s the reason that when we saw this meme, we both laughed and started thinking about all the adventures we watched the characters share. While this meme is used to poke fun at the sheer number of actors hired for these roles who have little to no hair, we are certain they were cast for their talent, not their hair or lack thereof.

Some notable — and probably obvious — mentions for applauding these men on their talent and the diversity of roles they have played would have to be Vin Diesel and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Each of these men have starred in many roles and have thus proven the scope of their talent. Diesel has been in everything from The Pacifier as Shane Wolfe to Saving Private Ryan as Private Caparzo and Guardians of the Galaxy as Groot. Johnson’s recent roles have included Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle as Spencer, and Hercules as the title role.

A WILD RIDE

Once again, we have a meme that makes us wonder how this even happened. The bear behind the wheel is entertaining in and of itself. However, the reactions of the couple beside him only enhance the quality of this photo. Perhaps this was a still from a movie, or perhaps it truly was as crazy it looks. Either way, we couldn’t resist adding this to our collection. Why does this meme make someone want to watch all eight movies again? Consider this: look at the expression of the three humans in this picture. The bear knows he can’t be bothered, but each of the three reactions is priceless. Why not start the series again and pay special attention to the reactions and expressions of the extras and the minor characters. The similarities to this meme might surprise you.

This meme, originally posted with the caption “In Soviet Russia, car drive you,”  falls into the subset of memes, the “Soviet Russia” memes, that highlight some of the things that happen in Russia that seem to not phase them at all. Crazy stuff did go down in Tokyo Drift though, so you never know what might happen if they were to travel to Russia!

MARIO KART VS. FAST & FURIOUS

Originally, Dominic Toretto — played by Vin Diesel — used this scene to highlight the fact that, no matter how close the runner-up might be, a win is a win. As a part of the first movie, The Fast and the Furious, this scene can be interpreted as setting the stage for the rest of the franchise. No matter whether it’s a close call or smooth sailing, Dom and his crew stick together and make the most of every moment on the path to victory. It’s an inspiring scene and was the moment that made fans of quite a few people.

The reason we chose this version of the meme, however, is because of the iconic nature of Mario Kart. Even non-gamers have, generally speaking, had  great experiences with the classic racing game. However, as cute as it may appear, it is also a breaker of friendships. But it’s just a harmless game… how could relationships possibly be ruined? Right? Wrong. It turns out that any racing game is super competitive, and any win is a major victory. It doesn’t matter if it’s Mario Kart or Grand Theft Auto, winning is winning, and much like the family in the Fast and Furious franchise, we are all about that good, good winning! No matter what!

 RIGHT IN THE FEELS

As the final addition to this Fast and Furious meme collection, we couldn’t pass this one up. Not only is this the perfect closing because it involves saying goodbye, but it also evokes so much nostalgia. This time, the nostalgia doesn’t just come for the series. Through this specific meme, nostalgia for Brian and his role in the movies is accompanied by the feelings of loss and sadness associated with the death of Paul Walker. In 2013, when everyone heard about his passing, the Fast and Furious fanbase suffered the loss not only of a talented man, but also of a beloved character.

This meme perfectly portrays how nearly every fan reacted to this scene. Brian and Dom starting out as friends and quickly becoming so much closer that their bond develops into that of brotherhood is an important piece of the entire series. When Brian pulls up next to Dom and utters the character’s last line, “Thought you could leave without saying goodbye,” we’re pretty sure the entire audience in that theater burst into tears (we certainly did). If any single meme was capable of making a person want to watch eight movies start to finish and watch that relationship grow from day one, it would be this one.

The post 15 Hilarious Fast And The Furious Memes appeared first on CBR.

Stan Lee Gives His Honest Opinion on Tom Holland’s Spider-Man

Stan Lee Gives His Honest Opinion on Tom Holland’s Spider-Man

If ever we needed further confirmation that Tom Holland’s take on Peter Parker/Spider-Man was pitch-perfect, well we now can add a full endorsement from the web-slinger’s creator. On Twitter, Stan Lee has revealed that the young actor’s portrayal of the character is exactly what he had in mind when he first created Spider-Man in 1962.

“I think @TomHolland1996 is a great Spider-Man,” Lee tweeted. “He is the exact height and age I envisioned when I first wrote Spider-Man.”

Holland first appeared as Spider-Man in 2016’s Captain America: Civil War, where the character closely resembled his first comic book appearances. With subsequent appearances in Spider-Man: Homecoming and Avengers: Infinity War, Holland has already put in three appearances as the wall-crawler and become a big part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

RELATED: Does Avengers: Infinity War Hide A Fantastic Four Easter Egg?

Lee’s official endorsement comes shortly after the legendary Marvel creator announced he had taken full control of his Twitter account for the first time. His comments come at an unfortunate time, given that Peter Parker shockingly died in Infinity War. But with an official endorsement by the man who started it all, can Spidey really remain dead? We’ll have to wait for Avengers 4 to find out.

RELATED: Infinity War Almost Had a Different Ending for Spider-Man

In theaters now, Avengers: Infinity War stars Robert Downey Jr., Josh Brolin, Mark Ruffalo, Tom Hiddleston, Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Jeremy Renner, Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Olsen, Sebastian Stan, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Bettany, Samuel L. Jackson, Cobie Smulders, Benedict Wong, Zoe Saldana, Karen Gillan, Vin Diesel, Dave Bautista, Pom Klementieff, Scarlett Johansson, Tom Holland and Anthony Mackie.

The post Stan Lee Gives His Honest Opinion on Tom Holland’s Spider-Man appeared first on CBR.

World’s first floating nuclear barge to power Russia’s Arctic oil drive

To meet its growing electricity needs in its drive to develop oil resources in remote Arctic regions, Russia has built a floating nuclear power station, a project that detractors deride as a "Chernobyl on ice".

NASA’s planet-hunting TESS satellite: What you need to know – KXXV News Channel 25


KXXV News Channel 25

NASA's planet-hunting TESS satellite: What you need to know
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Is Cable Actually a Mutant in Deadpool 2? An Investigation

Is Cable Actually a Mutant in Deadpool 2? An Investigation

WARNING: The following article contains major spoilers for Deadpool 2, in theaters now.


The Deadpool films have proved a little more faithful to the source material than the rest of Fox’s X-Men franchise. That’s not to say they don’t take some creative liberties, such as with Domino, who in the comics is a friend and occasional lover to Cable. Then there’s Cable himself, the superhero soldier we can’t quite categorize. So let’s take a look at his depiction in Deadpool 2 to determine whether he’s a mutant, like his comic book counterpart, or if he’s just well equipped with futuristic tech.

When Cable, played by Josh Brolin, first appears in Deadpool 2, he’s shown grieving over the charred remains of his wife and daughter before traveling back in time to try and kill the young mutant Russell before he can grow up to become a monster. His cybernetic enhancements are pretty clear, as they run from his left eye, and across the entire upper-left side of his torso. It looks painful, but they definitely come with benefits, as he’s able to view his surroundings using augmented reality and generate powerful force fields.

RELATED: We Didn’t Expect Cable’s Heartbreaking Deadpool 2 Backstory to Give Us Hope

It quickly becomes apparent just how powerful his metal arm is; the rest of his body seems pretty durable as well. He gets back up after being tossed into buildings, thrown off of cliffs and punched in the face by adversaries as strong as Juggernaut. It’s possible Cable’s ability to endure that kind of punishment stems from more technological enhancements, it could be part of a mutation.

He definitely looks like Cable, and bears all the superficial characteristics of the Marvel Comics character; even his personality matches. So how do his powers differ from those of the comic book character?

X-Men-Cable

Nathan Summers, who first appeared as Cable in 1990’s The New Mutants #86, by Louise Simonson, Rob Liefeld, Bob Wiacek and Glynis Oliver, has a complicated backstory. Really complicated. It can be simplified like this: His parents are Cyclops and a clone of Jean Grey, Madelyne Pryor, who was created in an attempt by Mister Sinister to breed a superior mutant capable of defeating the ancient and powerful Apocalypse. As a result, Cable was born a powerful mutant with incredible psionic abilities.

RELATED: Deadpool 2’s “Major Villain” Isn’t Who We Thought

Unfortunately, as a child, Cable was infected with the Techno-Organic Virus, which turns organic matter into technology, hence Cable’s technological appendages. He was able to keep it from spreading by consciously using his powerful telekinetic abilities. The extent of his telepathic and telekinetic powers have varied over the years as he lost and gained new abilities.

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The post Is Cable Actually a Mutant in Deadpool 2? An Investigation appeared first on CBR.

10 MCU Villains We’d Like To See Again (And 10 We Hope Don’t Come Back )

10 MCU Villains We’d Like To See Again (And 10 We Hope Don’t Come Back )

With Avengers: Infinity War out in theaters, MCU’s movie count is up to an astounding 19 films. And in the course of those movies, we’ve been introduced to a lot of heroes — and even more villains. One of the critiques that has been launched against the MCU is that their villains tend to be lackluster. It looks like Marvel has taken this critique to heart though, because in their past three movies, Avengers: Infinity War, Black Panther, and Thor: Ragnarok, they’ve given us some of the best MCU villains.

Taking a look back at the first ten years of the MCU, we’ve decided to come up with ten villains we’d love to see again, as well as ten villains we hope never pop up again in the MCU. The list ranges from villains who were able to evade imprisonment for their crimes to villains who met their apparent demise. Of course, if we know anything from reading Marvel comics, it’s that there are a million ways to come back from the dead. Given that, we’ve opted to include the apparently dead baddies and provided our opinion on whether or not they should stay dead. Here are ten MCU villains we want to see again and ten we hope don’t come back.

HOPE COMES BACK: ZEMO

Helmut Zemo made his debut in the MCU in Captain America: Civil War, directed by the Russo Brothers. Zemo’s terroristic actions were motivated by the death of his family, which occurred during the battle of Sokovia during the final act of Avengers: Age of Ultron. Blaming the Avengers for the death of his loved ones, Zemo masterminded the events that led to the superhero Civil War in hopes of destroying the Avengers from the inside out. Zemo’s work took place mostly behind the scenes, but he proved to be a formidable threat nonetheless. Among his actions, he framed the Winter Soldier for a bombing, reactivates the Winter Soldier by using Hydra control words, and later reveals to Iron Man that it was the Winter Soldier who killed Stark’s parents. Zemo appears to succeed at the end, although his attempt at taking his own life is stopped by the Black Panther. He’s imprisoned and not killed — which means that there this a high probability that we’ll (hopefully) see him again in the future.

Aside from Thanos, Zemo is the only villain to succeed at his ambitious mission. By the end of the film, Iron Man and Captain America were no longer on speaking terms (to say the least), and several superheroes were on the run from various world governments. We’d be disappointed if Zemo didn’t pop up again in some capacity.

HOPE NEVER DOES: SURTUR

Surtur posed the looming threat in Taika Waititi’s Thor: Ragnarok. The film opened up with Surtur and Thor duking it out, where we learned about an ancient prophecy. Surtur was destined to bring about Ragnarok — the utter destruction of Asgard. Thor escapes from the clutches of Surtur, and the seeming joke of a villain doesn’t reappear until the film’s finale. The bulk of the film is dominated by the presence of two other villains, the Grandmaster and Hela. However, Surtur does return for the final act, and it’s Thor who calls the giant forth. Having difficulty defeating Hela alone, Thor brought in Surtur to lay waste to Asgard and defeat Hela in the process. Thor and the remaining Asgardians escape as Surtur thrusts his blade into Asgard and destroys it.

Having fulfilled his destiny and laid waste to Asgard, Surtur perishes in the final explosion. Seeing as how Surtur had a single mission in life, and he completed that mission, there’s no reason to bring him back. He was a cool villain for the part that he played, but we can’t imagine a good enough reason to bring him back. We’d prefer if Marvel continued to explore Thor’s rogues’ gallery, allowing us to finally see villains like Enchantress or Ulik.

HOPE COMES BACK: THE COLLECTOR

The Collector made his MCU debut in a mid-credits scene from Alan Taylor’ Thor: The Dark World, but had a larger role in James Gunn’s The Guardians of the Galaxy. Taneleer Tivan is known as the Collector due to his preoccupation with collecting objects and living things from across the universe. In Thor: The Dark World, the Collector is introduced when Asgardians Sif and Volstagg visit him, bringing along one of the Infinity Stones. They hand the Infinity Stone known as the “Aether” to him, thinking that it would be safe in his hands and safer away from the other Infinity Stone at Asgard. The next we saw him, the Guardians of the Galaxy brought him the Power Stone, but after the Stone destroyed most of his collection, the Guardians left with it.

Lastly, the Collector appeared in Avengers: Infinity War, but only as an illusion created by Thanos with the help of the Reality Stone. It’s unclear if the Collector’s life was spared by Thanos or not. We hope that the Collector is still alive somewhere. Despite having appeared in three MCU movies, he hasn’t done a whole lot. In fact, he’s yet to pose as a threat to any of Marvel’s heroes. The Collector has a rich history in the comics, and we’d like to see his more threatening side explored in a future movie.

HOPE NEVER DOES: VULTURE

The Vulture made his MCU debut in John Watts’ Spider-Man: Homecoming. When we first met Adrian Toomes — the man that would become the Vulture — he was working as the owner of the Toomes Salvage Company. He and his team were out working in the aftermath of the battle of New York that took place at the end of Avengers when he came into conflict with the Department of Damage Control. The Department of Damage Control, partly owned by Tony Stark, kicked Toomes and his company out, causing Toomes to miss out on a big contract, and motivating him to take up a life of crime. He and his team managed to salvage some Chitauri technology left behind, and Toomes became the Vulture.

Towards the film’s climax, Vulture discovers Spider-Man’s identity. However, when imprisoned, Toomes tells Mac Gargan (who becomes the Scorpion in the comics) that he doesn’t know Spider-Man’s identity. He feels indebted to Spider-Man for saving his life despite Vulture’s previous attempts at killing the wall-crawler. At this point it would feel unnecessary to bring back Vulture. Had he not defended Spider-Man at the end, we could’ve imagined him coming back in a future movie as a member of the Sinister Six, however his final conversation with Mac Gargan indicates that he’s let go of his hatred for Spider-Man, and perhaps even of the Avengers.

HOPE COMES BACK: KINGPIN

Wilson Fisk, aka the Kingpin, made was introduced into the MCU in the first season of Daredevil. The season detailed Kingpin’s rise and fall, first seen as a respectable businessman, but finally exposed by Daredevil to be a crime boss by the season’s end. Fisk grew up in with a violent and ambitious father who often frightened Fisk. His relationship with his father came to a brutal end when Fisk was forced to take his life in order to protect his mother. Fisk then started down a dark path, which resulted in his criminal empire and control over Hell’s Kitchen. After Daredevil puts him away at the end of the first season, Fisk shows up again in the second season, having gained control of his prison from the inside.

The last we see of Fisk, he seems to have come to the suspicion that Matt Murdock is Daredevil. Kingpin is set to return for the third season of Daredevil and we couldn’t be more excited. He’s a villain we’re genuinely terrified of, and he’s captivating every time he appears on the screen. Just knowing he’s involved in the next season of Daredevil tells us that Matt Murdock and company are going to have a rough time.

HOPE NEVER DOES: ELEKTRA

Elektra Natchios made her MCU debut in the second season of Daredevil. She was revealed to be a former love interest of Matt Murdock and assassin trained by Matt’s mentor, Stick. Elektra resurfaces years later after her enemy, the Hand, has resurfaced in New York. Daredevil and Elektra work together, first to fight the Yakuza, and then to take down the Hand. In the season’s final battle, Elektra dies at the hands of Nobu Yoshioka, however, Elektra is resurrected and brainwashed by the Hand at the end, leading to her becoming the major threat in The Defenders. After proving to be a handful for the street-level superheroes, Elektra again appears to perish. In the final episode of the series, a building collapses around her and Matt Murdock. Of course, since Matt was revealed to be alive, it’s possible that she could’ve found a way to survive as well.

Elektra has died, come back, and died again. Coming back from the dead twice seems excessive given that there are so many other interesting Daredevil characters to bring to the show. Although she degenerated more into a personality-less terminator in The Defenders, her character was properly explored and developed in Daredevil. At this point, it just seems unnecessary to once again bring her into Matt Murdock’s life.

HOPE COMES BACK: DORMAMMU

Dormammu, the ruler of the Dark Dimension, was introduced into the MCU in Doctor Strange. Dormammu poses as the true villain of the movie, working behind the scenes. The inter-dimensional being, Dormammu, enlisted the disillusioned member of the Masters of the Mystic Arts, Kaecilius, to help Dormammu to come to Earth. However, before Earth could be swallowed up by the Dark Dimension, Doctor Strange interfered to bargain with Dormammu. Dormammu repeatedly defeated Strange, only for the latter to reappear again, unscathed. Strange then revealed that he’d used the Time Stone hidden in the Eye of Agamotto to trap Dormammu in an infinite time loop. Unless Dormammu and his forces left Earth alone, Dormammu would be stuck killing Strange for eternity. Having realized this, Dormammu agreed to Strange’s demands and left Earth.

In the comics, Dormammu has been around for a long time. He first appeared in Strange Tales #126 and has proved to be a major villain for Doctor Strange and the rest of the Marvel universe ever since. In other words, there’s a lot of story potential with someone like Dormammu. Add that to the fact that Dormammu was hardly in Doctor Strange, and we have good reason to want more of him in a future MCU flick.

HOPE NEVER DOES: SHOCKER

Shocker made his MCU debut in Spider-Man: Homecoming — actually, two Shockers made their debut in that movie. The first man to play the role was Jackson Brice, a former employee of Toomes Salvage Company, who then joined Toomes in his criminal ventures. Another baddie in the group, the Tinkerer, used a gauntlet taken from Crossbones to make the Shocker’s gauntlet. Brice wielded this weapon in a brief fight with Spider-Man before getting away. Later, after an argument breaks out between Toomes and Brice, and Brice threatens to turn in Toomes to the authorities, Toomes vaporized him with a Chitauri gun. In Brice’s place, another man on the crew, Herman Schultz, becomes Shocker. Schultz has several run-ins with the wall-crawler throughout the movie. That last we see of him, he’s been webbed to the side of a school bus, soon to be arrested.

Shocker’s never been a top-tier Spider-Man villain. We liked how he was portrayed Spider-Man: Homecoming, and we think he received just the right amount of screentime. If they did decide to bring him back, it would have to be as a member of the Sinister Six, but even then, we’d prefer if the Sinister Six found an A-lister instead of Shocker.

HOPE COMES BACK: ARNIM ZOLA

Arnim Zola made his MCU debut in Captain America: The First Avenger. Zola, one of the Nazi’s top scientists, was recruited by the Red Skull to work for HYDRA. When Hydra stumbled upon the Tesseract, it was Zola who was charged with studying the artifact in order to find a way to harness its energy. After some experimentation, Zola successfully discovered a way to transform its energy into a form of laser ammunition. Later, while aboard a HYDRA train, Zola was captured by Captain America and his howling commandos. In the aftermath of WWII, Zola was recruited by S.H.I.E.L.D. where he set to work rebuilding HYDRA from within. This led to the events of Captain America: The Winter Soldier, where it was also revealed that Zola had uploaded his consciousness into a computer. Zola appeared to meet his end when his mainframe was destroyed in an explosion.

It’a hardly a stretch for Marvel to reveal that Zola had backed up his consciousness onto another computer if Marvel decided to bring him back. And we hope they do. Like the Red Skull, Zola is a classic Captain America baddie, an evil scientist with tons of story potential. We hope they bring him back for at least one more flick.

HOPE NEVER DOES: KAECILIUS

Kaecilius made his MCU debut in Doctor Strange. As the primary villain of the movie, Kaecilius was a former member of the Masters of the Mystic Arts who’d gone rogue. Kaecilius had originally sought the Ancient One after his wife and son had died. He wanted answers, and after spending years with the Masters, Kaecilius gradually became disillusioned with the Ancient One. He felt that she had failed to provide the answers he’d sought. Kaecilius and his followers made a plan to bring Dormammu to Earth, believing that they could become immortal if they could make it into the Dark Dimension. Eventually, Kaecilius’ wish was granted. However, the eternity he’d have in the Dark Dimension would not be a pleasant one.

It seems that we’ve gotten about as much as we can expect from Kaecilius. He served his purpose as a fun threat that introduced audiences to the magical abilities of Doctor Strange, but with future Strange movies, it looks like we’ll be moving on to bigger and better things. Besides, Kaecilius will be rotting for eternity in the Dark Dimension, and there just doesn’t seem to be a compelling reason to bring him out of that. Instead, we hope Mordo will be gearing up to take on the Sorcerer Supreme…

HOPE COMES BACK: BARON MORDO

Baron Mordo made his MCU debut in Doctor Strange. Mordo was a long-time member of the Masters of the Mystic Arts and an invaluable ally of Doctor Strange’s throughout the movie. Mordo is introduced to Strange when the latter is seeking the Kamar-Taj. Strange, surrounded by muggers, is rescued by Mordo and then taken to the Kamar-Taj where Strange begins his initiation into the Masters of the Mystic Arts. Later, Strange discovers that the Ancient One is harnessing power from the Dark Dimension to the disbelief of Mordo. Mordo eventually discovers for himself that what Strange said was true, sowing seeds of disillusionment in Mordo — disillusionment that is only reinforced by Strange’s actions later in the film.

The full extent of Mordo’s disillusionment is revealed in a mid-credits scene when Mordo is shown to be going around draining the Magic from Sorcerers in order to right an imbalance. The final scene with Mordo certainly seemed to be setting him up to be the main antagonist in the sequel to Doctor Strange. Just as Doctor Strange showed us Stephen Strange’s turn into a hero, it also showed us the reasons for Mordo’s eventual descent. A clash between the two sorcerers is all but guaranteed to happen in a future movie.

HOPE NEVER DOES: JUSTIN HAMMER

Justin Hammer made his MCU debut in Iron Man 2. As the CEO of Hammer Industries and a rival of Tony Stark and Stark Industries, Hammer felt his company be under threat once Stark revealed himself to be Iron Man. Hammer set out to discredit Stark and turn the public against him — but the plan backfired, and Hammer’s own reputation start to head downhill. Growing more desperate and vengeful, Hammer recruits Ivan Vanko, aka Whiplash, to help him put down Stark. Again, Hammer’s plan backfires. This time it’s due to Whiplash, who betrays Hammer. After it’s discovered that Hammer’s been helping Whiplash, the former CEO is imprisoned for his crimes.

As goofy and entertaining as Justin Hammer was in Iron Man 2, we see no reason for him to appear in a future MCU instalment. The guy is a competitive businessman who crosses the line on some occasions, but he’s hardly a supervillain. He doesn’t exactly make us fear for Tony Stark’s life. And that’s probably the reason he’s such a forgettable villain. Despite having a great actor play him, Hammer was a pretty disappointing character. If we are to get another Iron Man film anytime soon, we’d rather see Marvel bring in a villain that’s yet to make it to the big screen.

HOPE COMES BACK: ULTRON

Ultron made his MCU debut in Avengers: Age of Ultron. The Ultron Program was created by Tony Stark and Bruce Banner as a peacekeeping AI that would eventually replace the Avengers. Suddenly, Ultron became sentient, and it didn’t take him long to come to the conclusion that the Avengers and humanity, in general, were way too destructive, and needed to be eliminated. Ultron found a body and quickly got to work on his plan for world peace — which included genocide. Ultron’s plan involved lifting up the city of Novi Grad and turning it into an asteroid, which would hurdle back down onto Earth and cause an extinction level event. Luckily, the Avengers don’t let this happen and Ultron and his army are wiped out by the Avengers, with Vision taking out what appears to be Ultron’s last body.

Ultron is way too important of a villain to be one and done. The evil A.I. is a classic Avengers baddie that constantly finds new ways to evolve in the comics. It wouldn’t be much of a stretch for Marvel to reveal that Ultron didn’t totally perish at the end of Avengers: Age of Ultron, so that they could bring him back in a new form, more terrifying than ever.

HOPE NEVER DOES: ABOMINATION

Emil Blonsky, aka the Abomination, made his MCU debut in The Incredible Hulk. Blonsky, a born warrior and career soldier, is charged by General Thaddeus Ross with the task of hunting down the Hulk. Blonsky is injected with a version of the Super Soldier serum that gifts him with enhanced speed and strength. The boost isn’t enough though, and Blonsky is hospitalized after a run-in with the Hulk. Blonsky received another injection of the Super Soldier serum, which ends up leaving him with some mild mutations. Blonsky’s transformation into the Abomination becomes complete after he receives an injection of Banner’s blood. This leads to a clash between the Abomination and the Hulk in New York. After a brutal battle, the Hulk comes out on top and Blonsky is imprisoned.

The Abomination was essentially just a giant monster that could actually compete with the Hulk. Past his ability to challenge the Green Goliath, there wasn’t much to his character. We’d be fine if he didn’t ever pop up in the MCU again. There are plenty of other interesting threats that Marvel can pull in and throw at the Hulk. And if they were to do another Hulk movie, we’d love it if Marvel finally followed up on the origin of the Leader, which occurred near the end of The Incredible Hulk.

HOPE COMES BACK: JIGSAW

Billy Russo, aka Jigsaw, made his MCU debut in the first season of The Punisher. Russo was the best friend of Frank Castle and worked alongside him on a secret U.S. Special Forces Unit in the middle east. They worked together on Operation Cerebus, the consequences of which served as the focal point for the season. After returning from the Middle East, Russo founded Anvil, a private military company. Working with Agent Orange, and using his company’s resources, Russo worked behind the scenes to eliminate Castle. Eventually, Castle discovered that his friend had betrayed him, and even known about the deaths of Castle’s family. Castle’s and Russo’s feud came to a head when the two met at the Central Park carousel. Castle came out on top, leaving Russo barely alive and with a terrible facial scar.

Seeing as how season one of The Punisher told the tale of Jigsaw’s origin, it’s a sure bet that he’ll return for the next season, worse than ever. Now that Russo’s good looks and his reputation are done, we can expect a more brutal and evil Russo for season two. If The Punisher has proved anything, it’s that vengeance is a strong incentive — and Russo now has plenty of reason to seek revenge.

HOPE NEVER DOES: THE TINKERER

Phineas Mason, aka the Tinkerer, made his MCU debut in Spider-Man: Homecoming. Like both of the Shockers, Tinkerer worked for Toomes even before they took up a life of crime for Toomes Salvage Company.  Once Stark’s company unjustly kicked Toomes out of a big contract, Tinkerer followed Toomes and worked for him in his criminal enterprises. It was Tinkerer’s responsibility to toy around with the salvaged weapons, re-work them, and make them functional. He was to thank for providing Toomes with the Vulture Exo-Suit and creating the Shocker Gauntlet. In the final showdown between Spider-Man and Vulture, the Tinkerer assists Toomes from afar. After Toomes is apprehended, the Tinkerer goes into hiding.

Throwing the Tinkerer into the movie was a nice gift for the hardcore fans, although the small-time baddie has never been begged for by fans. Like Shocker, we feel that we got enough of him in this flick. Of course, the fact that he got away strongly suggests that he’ll appear in another Spider-Man movie. His skill set makes him a highly valuable asset for future enemies of Spider-Man. We just wouldn’t be heartbroken if he didn’t show up again and would prefer if the franchise focused on other baddies.

HOPE COMES BACK: RED SKULL

Johann Schmidt, aka the Red Skull, made his MCU debut in Captain America: The First Avenger. Schmidt was a member of Germany’s SS during WWII and formed his own branch within, named HYDRA. After kidnapping Abraham Erskine, Schmidt gains access to the Super Soldier serum. He’s injected with it, giving him super strength, but also gained a red deformed face, thus making him the Red Skull. Later, the Red Skull discovers the Tesseract and hopes to harness its power. In his final confrontation with Captain America, the Red Skull is sucked through a portal created by the Tesseract. After a long absence in the MCU, the Red Skull returned for Avengers: Infinity War. When Thanos and Gamora arrive at Volmir, in search of the Soul Stone, they are greeted by the Stonekeeper: the Red Skull.

Seeing Red Skull pop up in Avengers: Infinity War was one of the movie’s many surprises. Having been absent from the MCU, we’d begun to think that the Red Skull would never come back. But now that he has, we want to see even more of him — it doesn’t seem too difficult to do story-wise. The Red Skull was the keeper of the Soul Stone, which was taken by Thanos. So, now what does the Red Skull do?

HOPE NEVER DOES: MALEKITH

Malekith made his MCU debut in Thor: The Dark World as the leader of the Dark Elves and the primary antagonist in the film. After many of his people died in a battle against the Asgardians thousands of years ago, Malekith resurfaced to have his revenge. Malekith, with the help of his weapon called the Aether, tries to bring an end to the Nine Realms. After a lengthy battle with Thor on Earth, Malekith is crushed by his own ship.

Thor: The Dark World is largely regarded to be one of the worst MCU instalments, if not the worst, and Malekith definitely had a hand in that result. As far as supervillains go, Malekith ranks among the most forgettable. It didn’t help that, despite having next to no personality, Malekith had a fairly complicated backstory that bored audiences. We’re glad that he met his end in the movie’s conclusion, but of course, Malekith has risen from the dead before, and it is a comic book movie, so Marvel could bring him back if they wanted to. But why would they? We’re stunned he even won the role of the main antagonist in the first place. There were plenty of other Thor villains and stories that should’ve made it to the big screen before Malekith ever did. Enchantress, for instance, is a major Thor antagonist that would’ve been vastly more interesting than Malekith. At least they made up for Malekith and the mess he made with Thor: Ragnarok.

HOPE COMES BACK: THE MANDARIN

The Mandarin (sort of) made his MCU debut in Iron Man 3. It’s tricky to talk about the MCU’s Mandarin because there are three people that can be called the Mandarin. First, there was Trevor Slattery, an actor hired to play the Mandarin, and the person who Tony Stark thought was the Mandarin. Then there was Aldrich Killian, the man who’d hired Slattery, and the man who claimed to be the Mandarin during his final fight with Iron Man. Lastly, there’s the mysterious entity that’s regarded as being the true Mandarin. This person has yet to be seen in a Marvel movie but has been mentioned in both Iron Man 3 and in the Marvel One-Shot, All Hail The King. In the One-Shot, Slattery was interviewed by a filmmaker while he’s in prison. It was revealed that the filmmaker worked for the true Mandarin and had been sent there to eliminate Slattery for mocking the Mandarin.

When we say that we want the Mandarin to come back, we’re talking about the one we’ve never seen in the flesh — the true Mandarin. It’s kind of ridiculous that a villain that’s been so built up hasn’t actually appeared on-screen yet, but it’s something to look forward to.

HOPE NEVER DOES: LOKI

Loki made his MCU debut in Thor and has appeared in more films than any other MCU baddie. In both Thor and The Avengers, Loki played the main antagonist and was responsible for the conflict at the heart of each movie. In Thor: The Dark World, Loki appeared to be turning a new leaf and helped out Thor against a new threat. Of course, it was revealed at the end of the flick that Loki was still up to his old ways. Once again, in Thor: Ragnarok, played with being a hero, although he couldn’t help but fall back into old patterns here and there. However, Loki seemed to seal his fate as a villain turned hero with his brief appearance at the beginning of Avengers: Infinity War. The God of Mischief dies a hero after attempting to assassinate Thanos.

Of course, this isn’t the first time that Loki has apparently died. But it does feel like it’s the last time. Loki’s played villain, anti-hero, and hero. His character arc has gone as far as it can go, and we can’t see a role for him in the future of the MCU. While he was around, he was great, but we think Marvel would be best to let him stay dead this time around.

The post 10 MCU Villains We’d Like To See Again (And 10 We Hope Don’t Come Back ) appeared first on CBR.

Scott Snyder Explains Joker’s Role on DC’s New Legion of Doom

Scott Snyder Explains Joker’s Role on DC’s New Legion of Doom

In a new interview with CBR, DC Comics visionary Scott Snyder delved into the antagonizing force in his forthcoming series, Justice League: the Legion of Doom. Snyder’s Legion — the first to truly take place in-continuity — will be a great deal more ruthless than the version most know from Saturday morning cartoons.

The Legion of Doom’s roster consists of Lex Luthor, Black Manta, Gorilla Grodd, Cheetah, Sinestro, and the Joker. Naturally, Luthor is the team’s founder and leader, however, the Joker fulfills a niche as well — and it’s not the wild card.

Snyder is very particular about his use of the Joker, and in his words, for the classic villain to be a part of a team he’s writing, the Clown Prince of Crime needs “to have a very specific role.” And while this role will become more clear as the series progresses, Snyder was very clear about not wanting to use the Joker in a big way at the very beginning, indicating his presence may unfold as a slow burn.

RELATED: He Who Laughs, Lasts: Why The Joker Endures

Snyder explained Luthor’s reasoning for putting the Joker on the team as Luthor seeing the Batman nemesis “as his partner.” He said, “Luthor has this vision all of a sudden of what we’re supposed to be as a species…and he sees the Joker as a great inspiration in the story.”

But why add the Joker to the Legion of Doom? According to Snyder, “Joker is almost a touchstone for [Luthor] to go back and say, ‘Am I doing this right? Does this bring us closer to what we’re supposed to be?’ Joker gleefully plays that role.”

Justice League #1 by Scott Snyder, Jim Cheung, and Jorge Jimenez is out on June 6.

The post Scott Snyder Explains Joker’s Role on DC’s New Legion of Doom appeared first on CBR.

Marvel Director Admits Watchmen Is His Favorite Comic Book Movie

Marvel Director Admits Watchmen Is His Favorite Comic Book Movie

Marvel Cinematic Universe director Scott Derrickson (Doctor Strange) has admitted his favorite comic book movie isn’t a Marvel movie, rather, Warner Bros.’ divisive adaptation of the DC Comic miniseries Watchmen.

Specifically, Derrickson says The Ultimate Cut of the Zack Snyder-directed film — a re-edit, released on home video — takes the cake as the best comic book movie of all-time, even comparing it to Ridley Scott’s 1982 sci-fi masterpiece Blade Runner.

Watchmen: The Ultimate Cut is a DC film, and if I’m being honest, my favorite comic book movie to date,” Derrickson wrote on Twitter. “It is the Blade Runner of superhero cinema.”

RELATED: Why Marvel Hasn’t Announced Doctor Strange 2 Yet

Like Blade Runner, there are a handful of versions of Watchmen out there, including the Ultimate Cut which Derrickson is praising. The re-edit includes a number of deleted scenes from the Director’s Cut, in addition to clips from the Tales of the Black Freighter animated film interspersed throughout the movie, aiming to recapture the effect of the original graphic novel, which bounced between the main Watchmen storyline and the comic-within-the-comic for added allegorical effect. The Ultimate Cut has an impressive 215-minute runtime.

Derrickson, who helmed the first (and only, at this point) Doctor Strange solo movie, served as a consultant on the Marvel Studios epic Avengers: Infinity War. While he’s publicly expressed ideas for a sequel to Doctor Strange, Disney has yet to formally announce a follow-up to the 2016 Benedict Cumberbatch-led hit.

The post Marvel Director Admits Watchmen Is His Favorite Comic Book Movie appeared first on CBR.

Thanks To Dark Nights: Metal, Atlantis Is Going Through A Massive Change

Thanks To Dark Nights: Metal, Atlantis Is Going Through A Massive Change

WARNING: This article contains mild spoilers for Aquaman #36 by Dan Abnett and Riccardo Federici, in stores now.


The events of Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo’s multiverse-altering event series Dark Nights: Metal sent shockwaves throughout the DC Universe. As much as the series was a conclusion of the creative team’s run on Batman, it also served as the stepping stone for new types of stories starring the DC pantheon to be told.

We’ve seen the arrival of the Omega Titans in Justice League: No Justice, and the Dark Gods have begun to make their presencefelt in Wonder Woman. But that’s only the beginning.

RELATED: Wonder Woman Just Met the DCU’s Dark Gods – But Who Are They?

Now, Aquaman #36 reveals that Metal also had an effect on Atlantis: there are now cracks in the foundation of the city and, clearly, that can only mean that there are big changes coming for the sunken kingdom.

Near the end of the issue, a group of Aquaman’s freedom fighters find themselves underneath Atlantis where Vulko notices there are now fissures in the foundations of the city. “These fissures! They weren’t here the last time,” he exclaims. “Seems Atlantis has shifted on its foundations… Rath’s work…? Or something else?”

RELATED: DC’s ‘Sink Atlantis’ Crosses Over Aquaman, Suicide Squad in August

The “something else” makes it clear that the question is actually referring to the events of Metal, which saw the multiverse altered and the Source Wall fractured.

Dark Nights Metal Atlantis future

Somehow, the ensuing confrontation, or perhaps the breaking of the Source Wall itself, managed to affect the foundations of the city and now, change is on the horizon. This is more than likely the first steps taken toward the inevitable future that was glimpsed at the end of Dark Nights: Metal #6, a future that showed Atlantis risen from the depths.

Once its foundations are broken, perhaps the underwater city will rise. Or perhaps the only way to save it from sinking any further will be to bring it to the surface once more. One way or another, it appears as if the future glimpsed in Metal #6 is coming faster than anticipated. The tides are turning, and with them will come big changes for Aquaman, his kingdom and the DC *universe as a whole.

KEEP READING: Will Snyder’s Justice League Tackle Johns’ ‘Rise of the Seven Seas’ Storyline?

The post Thanks To Dark Nights: Metal, Atlantis Is Going Through A Massive Change appeared first on CBR.

21 Weird Facts About Deadpool (That Only Real Marvel Fans Know)

21 Weird Facts About Deadpool (That Only Real Marvel Fans Know)

It’s no secret that Deadpool is more than a little unorthodox. Comic book fans have always had a fondness for anti-heroes like Wolverine and the Punisher, and Deadpool is no exception. Since his 1991 premiere in the pages of Rob Liedfeld’s X-Force, our favorite mouthy mercenary has blurred the lines between humor, action, comedy — and let’s face it — good taste. After all, isn’t that the reason he’s also become one of the most beloved creations at Marvel, with a second major motion picture set for release?

There’s lots to love about Deadpool. As far as comic book fans go, he’s pretty much got it all: an endless cache of guns and ammo, top-notch fighting skills, a cool costume, a winning devil-may-care attitude, and a willingness to do just about anything (and we mean anything) to get the job done. Over the years Deadpool has gone through more harrowing adventures than a hero has any right to survive. Through it all, he’s maintained a flair for the absurd that fans have come to love… even by his definition of crazy, Deadpool’s strange adventures have taken him to new territory, which we are now going to explore together! Here is the CBR rundown of the 20 weirdest things about the loveable crackpot!

DEADPOOL IS DEATHSTROKE

Deadpool is basically Deathstroke the Terminator, a Teen Titans villain who’s known as the greatest contract killer in the DC Universe. The similarities don’t end at their mercenary pasts, though. Deathstroke wears a black and orange suit of full body armor, while Deadpool sports a red and black version. Deadpool’s first mission is to kill Cable and the X-Force, and Deathstroke’s goal is to eliminate the Titans. Their fighting skills are equally incredible, and both sport a trademark combo of sword and guns. Deathstroke’s alter ego is Slade Wilson, and if you’re reading this list, you’re familiar with Deadpool’s real name (also Wilson for the newbs). Deadpool’s co-creator, Rob Liefeld, grew up reading the Teen Titans.

Loving Deathstroke, he created Deadpool as an homage to the character and artist George Perez.

While similarities between Deadpool and Deathstroke were obvious from the onset of Wade Wilson’s mercenary career, it didn’t take long for Deadpool to forge his own path. With each appearance Deadpool became less villainous and more heroic — the same can’t be said for Deathstroke (well, until recently). Most significant is Deadpool’s killer sense of humor. You’re unlikely to witness Deathstroke using humor to distract his opponents, but you can’t read a Deadpool comic without Wade Wilson cracking a joke (or a skull). Deadpool has come into his own, leaving behind those dated (but originally quite fair) comparisons.

FROM C-LIST TO A-LIST

In typical Deadpool fashion, nothing has come easy for the anti-hero-for-hire. His path has taken him through one violent clash after another, and the fact that he’s still around after having suffered multiple deaths speaks volumes. To begin with, he was never meant to be much more than a parody, a disposable character used as a plot point. From his very first appearance, his knack for humor — even in the grimmest of circumstances — endeared him to readers. It’s given him one of the most loyal and vocal fanbases in comics.

Comic book fans began clamoring for more Deadpool appearances. It took only two years for Wade to get his own mini-series, penned by his original writer, Fabian Nicieza. What followed was another miniseries, and in 1997, his own ongoing title. It should come as no surprise that Deadpool’s movie career mirrored that of comics. Ryan Reynolds, a self-professed fan, took hold of the character in the Wolverine movie franchise. But the presentation of the character angered fans (and Reynolds), and it looked like his big-screen life would end abruptly. Believing in the character’s potential, Ryan Reynolds, with the support of millions of fans, brought Deadpool back from the cinematic graveyard to star in the most successful R-rated movie of all time.

SHUT YOUR MOUTH

While Deadpool’s popularity with comic book fans isn’t in question, the same can’t be said for the superhero community. He’s a bit of a pariah. It’s not just because he’s willing to go to extremes, least of which killing, to get the job done. Deadpool is known for his endless banter, and not everyone enjoys a gabby grinder. Even Spider-Man (also a verbose fellow) would rather steer clear. All of this is because Deadpool can’t keep his mouth shut.

Then again, without that annoying repartee, it’s unlikely that Deadpool would’ve risen beyond comic book obscurity.

Deadpool’s first movie appearance was universally condemned. When he underwent his painful transformation in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, it was the last thing fans expected to see — Ryan Reynolds emerged without a mouth. Hollywood has a history of heavy-handed tinkering when it comes to literary characters, and comics are no exception. So how does a superhero known as the merc-with-a-mouth get his kisser taken away? Essentially the filmmakers removed Deadpool’s most commanding weapon: his ability to take down his foes with the power of words. Perhaps the folks behind his first movie never cared whether he’d live to see another day (though the post-credits stinger does suggest they had plans for him). Still, they should’ve known that you can’t keep Deadpool down.

THE MERC WITH THE MERCH

In the world of merchandising, every Marvel property has a world of collectible figures, T-shirts, trinkets and paraphernalia. Deadpool is no exception, with everything from bedsheets to underwear and socks. It shouldn’t be surprising that you can find a collection of merchandise only Deadpool fans could appreciate! There are Deadpool jelly molds shaped like his head, a piggybank with Deadpool’s trademark red and black mask, and Deadpool refrigerator decals. The winner for the most appropriately gruesome merchandise is the severed Deadpool head pencil holder made of polytone; there’s plenty of space to impale Deadpool with the pens and pencils you keep misplacing throughout the house.

Suffering from superhero envy, Deadpool has embraced the notion of his popularity, taking it to new dimension within his comic book. More than once he’s taken the mantle of most popular “hero”, and he won’t shy away from telling anyone who’ll listen. His shameless self-promotion has led him to create a merchandising empire that rivals even Captain America – it’s not uncommon to see an adoring fan holding a toy or wearing a Deadpool T-shirt in the background. Though achieving worldwide fame doesn’t necessarily make much sense for a hired killer, not making sense is what we’ve come to expect.

BROTHERLY LOVE

Deadpool’s made no secret of his love for Captain America. Considering his choice of gainful employment, that’s more than a little strange. Yet Wade Wilson idolizes the star-spangled Avenger. He’s even told Cap how he feels. Maybe it’s the good looks he wishes he still had, or the timelessness of Steve Rogers. As far as Wade is concerned, the man can do no wrong. Perhaps feeling sorry for the guy, Captain America hasn’t rejected the love he’s been shown, using it instead to temper the merc’s violent tendencies.

Captain America’s influence on Deadpool has worked on more than one occasion… perhaps too well.

Marvel recently revealed that its ultimate icon, Captain America, was an agent of Hydra — a crazed organization bent on world domination. How did that happen? It’s a long and convoluted story best kept for another list. Suffice it to say that Steve Rogers used it to his advantage. Before Marvel’s heroes could figure out the truth, Captain America convinced Deadpool to kill an agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. who’d discovered his true nature. When Deadpool learned he was being used, he sought revenge. As far as Wade is concerned, that’s probably dulled Cap’s aura at least a tad. Somehow, we think Deadpool’s likely to get over it.

HERE COMES… AVENGERPOOL?

Yes, you read that right. Deadpool was an Avenger. No doubt Wade’s man-crush on Captain America had something to do with the mercenary joining the ranks of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes. No one can argue that Deadpool doesn’t have a lot to offer in skills and power. As we’ve already established, he has a fairly steady stream of cash (especially at the time), which helped Deadpool to fund the Avengers for the time he joined the in-universe titled “Unity Team,” aka The Uncanny Avengers. Regardless of the reasons, it’s hard to make a logical case for Deadpool’s membership. Wade Wilson has guns – lots of guns – and he’s more than happy to use them. That’s not a trait the Avengers typically prefer.

This time using it for good, and knowing that Deadpool’s affection is quite real, Steve Rogers extended the membership branch to the mouthy merc. The offer came at a time when the Marvel Universe was in turmoil, as it usually is, and the Avengers Unity Team was born. It was a noble effort to show that mutants, Inhumans and humans could get along. Since the world looks up to the Avengers, it seemed like a good idea to assemble a team with a diverse cast of heroes. Though the intention was unquestionably noble, better candidates could have joined, preventing the in-fighting that ensued. At least Deadpool’s membership made for an entertaining read.

SPIDEYPOOL IS ALSO A THING

If we’d compile a short list of superheroes Deadpool looks up to, Spider-Man would rank second. At first glance the unlikely pair have a lot in common. They share a love of full-body suits. They also love to ramble and inject their own sense of humor at the worst time — Peter Parker’s just as likely to spin a web as he is to shoot a one-liner. Sounds a lot like our loveable anti-hero doesn’t it? Once you scratch the surface, however, the similarities quickly fade. They’re nothing alike. Spider-Man abides by a strict moral code of conduct, while Deadpool’s law involves good times and cash.

If you happen to believe that opposites attract, then the pair are a match made in comic book heaven.

Like most unusual pairings, nothing comes easy for Spideypool. Peter Parker would prefer keeping his distance, but unfortunately for Spider-Man, both their costumes are red, and they’ve been mistaken for each other on many occasions. That alone should be cause for the duo never to hang out. They also argue incessantly, and villains aren’t likely to get in a word balloon of dialogue. Although that’s an advantage few superhero pairings have, it’s hardly enough to make for a fine-tuned team-up. Perfection is over-rated in the world of Spideypool; maybe that’s the real reason we all love this crazy pair so much.

DEADPOOL AND SPIDER-MAN HAVE A CHILD

We’ve already established that for better or worse, Spider-Man and Deadpool are close. They certainly have all the makings of a great romantic pairing, sometimes sounding like Han Solo and Princess Leia. That’s probably never crossed Peter Parker’s mind, but you know the same can’t be said for Deadpool. Like Wade, if you’ve ever wondered what a Spider-Man/Deadpool lovechild would look like, it’s probably nothing like the reality.

Itsy Bitsy is her name, and she’s the creation of a mad villain, Patient Zero. Determined to have his revenge against his nemeses, he injects a willing patient with genes from both Spidey and Deadpool. The result is paradoxically perfect. Armed with a vicious sense of humor and a set of deadly spider powers, Itsy Bitsy turns on her creator, deciding she wants to fight crime with her daddies. The perfectly heroic thing to do at this point would be for Spider-Man and Deadpool to take Itsy Bitsy under their wing. Unfortunately, Itsy’s a little too homicidal for the pair, and they consider disintegrating their unwanted child. Considering Spider-Man’s unwillingness to kill under any circumstances, it’s safe to say that having a lovechild with Deadpool sends shivers down the wallcrawler’s backside.

DEADPOOL IS A SOFTIE

In the world of mercenaries and contract killers, rubbing shoulders with Captain America and Spider-Man makes zero sense. And yet, that’s what Deadpool likes to do. It’s not always easy to see that Wade Wilson has a heart. If you look close enough, the facts speak for themselves. When Wade discovers he has a daughter – and we’re not talking about the homicidal Itsy Bitsy – he moves to the same neighborhood to keep an eye on her. When Apocalypse is reborn a seemingly innocent child, it’s Deadpool who becomes protective. He hopes to guide the kid away from his villainous destiny, even when his teammates are willing to kill.

Maybe Deadpool can’t live in a world without Spider-Man.

Deadpool has sacrificed himself for the sake of his teammates when he joined X-Force, a reborn team whose mandate was completing the mission at all costs. The aforementioned tussle with Itsy Bitsy is probably the greatest proof of Deadpool’s sweetness. When Spider-Man was determined to eradicate the lab creation, Deadpool wouldn’t let him murder. Deadpool knew that killing would damage Peter Parker’s psyche, ending his heroic career as Spider-Man. Maybe Deadpool can’t live in a world without Spider-Man. But we think a willingness to kill so that your buddy doesn’t have to is more proof that Wade Wilson is a softie.

TWO BODIES ONE MIND

Captain America and Spider-Man might be willing to tolerate Deadpool’s antics on occasion, but they’d never want to live in his head. Few could, except perhaps for Madcap, a villain in colorful tights who loves to goof around. Sharing a similar fate to Wade Wilson, Madcap gained his powers because of science gone wrong. After an accident, the madman lay unconscious in a pool of a chemical called, get this, Chemical X07. Like Deadpool, he effectively became immortal, gaining the ability to heal any damage. The accident drove him insane and Madcap was born; sounds surprisingly like Deadpool, except that Madcap feels no pain.

After a chance meeting on a rooftop, Deadpool and Madcap recognized their similarities, exchanging banter and comparing their abilities. The not-so-friendly meeting resulted in a fight with Thor, whose lightning disintegrated both their bodies. The pair regenerated as one, and Madcap found himself living in Deadpool’s similarly damaged mind. Seeing Deadpool talking to himself would hardly surprise anyone who knows him, but Madcap wasn’t prepared to experience being Deadpool. Each time Deadpool took a hit, Madcap felt pain for the first time. After another rumble, Madcap and Deadpool physically parted ways, and the encounter counts among Deadpool’s strangest tales.

HEADLESS WILSON

Deadpool isn’t the only superhero with the ability to regenerate. Where would Wolverine be without his famed healing factor? The same can be said for Deadpool, a character who probably holds the record for the most deaths in comics. The only problem is that Deadpool’s healing powers make little sense. Though it’s probably easy to argue that all comic book science is flawed, Deadpool’s ability to regenerate is downright bizarre.

It’s so powerful that he’s been decapitated on more than one occasion. Each time he’s lived to fight another day.

During one classic battle he was torn to pieces. On another Deadpool was able to regenerate entirely with just his hand remaining. It’s all very macabre and one of the reasons fans love him so much. Considering his healing power, it’s especially perplexing that his face can’t heal. The explanation appears to be simple. Wade suffered from cancer; the disfigurement is a result of a cancer he had before becoming Deadpool. The cancer acts as a barrier holding back the full power of his healing factor, which if removed, would kill him. It makes no sense, which is to say a lot of sense in the wonderfully wacky world of Wade Wilson.

A FRACTURED MIND

We’ve already established that there’s almost nothing Deadpool can’t survive, decapitation and incineration included. Yet having to experience the trauma of a violent death, only to be reborn and live it again, is enough to shatter even the toughest minds. The transformation that made him Deadpool should have been sufficient to drive Wade nuts. You could argue that Deadpool is mad. Certainly, his willingness to throw himself into situations that will cause him more pain, time and time again, shows that he’s at least a glutton for punishment. Having established that his healing factor will heal anything but his cancer, it begs the question, what about his mind?

We know that comic book science is far from realistic, but there’s no reason why a healing factor couldn’t repair brain damage. You could argue that Wade Wilson’s mind isn’t physically hurt. The ordeal of each stabbing or shooting, followed by the requisite regeneration, could be something entirely different. But if you think that Deadpool has been decapitated more than once, regenerating one’s head should be enough to heal even mental trauma. Trying to figure it all out is enough to give us a massive headache — something Wade’s healing powers can hopefully fix.

ALIVE AND DEAD, AGAIN AND AGAIN

Thinking of all the superheroes who’ve come back from the dead would make for a long list. Superman did it perhaps most famously, returning as four distinct superheroes; it started a trend in comics. Even Batman, a man with no superpowers, passed away only to make a dramatic return. When it comes to dying with bravado, nobody does it with more style than Deadpool. It might not always be graceful, such as the time Hulk tore him to pieces, but each fight leads to a potential death, and creative writers have taken advantage of his ability to come back from anything.

There are endless kooky aspects to Deadpool’s rebirths. Arguably Deadpool’s zaniest death happened at the hands of Thanos.

Deadpool returned as four distinct characters, poking fun at the previously mentioned Death of Superman. Wade Wilson was reborn as an altruistic version of himself, a valiant hero whose needs come second to those he helps. Another version was a wise-cracking idiot that puts the real Deadpool to shame. The third was another extreme form of Wade: a brutal killer with no conscience. The final and weirdest Deadpool to emerge was little more than an amoeba, mumbling just one word: “pickles”.

DEADPOOL WAS VENOM

Nothing should surprise us, and the title of this entry is no exception. Venom is an alien entity that can’t live on its own. It requires a host for its survival, eventually taking full control of its victim. Presumably a mind that’s too strong, or one that’s too damaged, wouldn’t be the ideal choice. It’s strange to think of the Venom symbiote willingly attaching itself to Wade Wilson. Deadpool’s chaotic mind should send shivers down anyone’s spine, including an alien creature like Venom. But it’s not so much the choice of host as the method that warrants our attention.

Years before Deadpool made his debut, Venom appeared in 1984’s Secret Wars, one of comics’ first cosmic events. It’s when Spider-Man first adopts the black costume that eventually becomes Venom. Years later, the comic book Deadpool’s Secret Secret Wars retcons that bit of history, revealing that Deadpool wore the black suit before Peter Parker. If we follow this road to its conclusion, Deadpool wasn’t the tastiest meal. A superior host in the form of Spider-Man came along, and Venom jumped ship as soon as it could. If we take it as cannon, it’s even possible Venom’s instability is a direct result of the time it spent in Wade’s mind. This rethinking of Venom’s Deadpool connection is a ludicrous idea that only works in Deadpool’s universe.

MUTANT OR NOT?

The re-imagining of a comic book character is nothing new. Even in the earliest days of this medium, a character’s origin was subject to change if it suited the story. In this case, Wade Wilson is no exception, and some aspects of his history are predictably wonky. When he first appears in the pages of New Mutants, it’s easy to assume that Deadpool is a mutant.

The source of his powers reveals the answer isn’t quite so simple.

For a long time, we knew next to nothing about Wade Wilson. Depending on which comic you’ve read, Wade was a mercenary long before he was Deadpool. When Wade developed an incurable cancer, the only way he could survive was to undergo a procedure at the hands of the same people who created Wolverine. Wade submitted to Department K, an arm of the Weapons X program. An injection of Wolverine’s healing factor was the key to fighting off the aggressive cancer, giving Wade regenerative abilities. Since the genes of a mutant gave him his powers, Deadpool might be considered a mutant himself. But in the Marvel Universe mutants are born and not made, so Deadpool walks a fine line — just the way he likes it.

X-BUDDIES

Despite not technically being a mutant, Deadpool has an unwavering link to the X-Men universe. He’s never left their orbit for very long; Deadpool’s been a member of X-Force, and he’s sufficiently annoyed Wolverine to get the attention of most other X-Men. It’s easy for readers of decades of comics to assume that Deadpool has either fought or teamed-up with most of the X-Men. We might take it for granted that Deadpool knows every mutant out there. In comics it’s possible to revisit the past to inject Deadpool where he needs to be with relative ease.

In the movie version of Deadpool, the same rules don’t apply. You can’t assume that everyone has read comics. But that’s just what the Deadpool movie does. After a glorious fight on a bridge, the X-Man Colossus pitches Deadpool into a car. As soon as he’s up, Wade knows the metal man’s name (but not his fellow mutant), and the audience is expected to ignore that there’s no explanation. It’s possible a scene was planned to explain how they first met. A quick flashback would’ve served to cement Deadpool’s link to the X-Men and strengthened the picture. They took the time to introduce other characters and establish history, and Colossus and the X-Men shouldn’t have been an exception.

AJAX ATTACK

Movies often make little mistakes, and there are countless fan pages dedicated to exposing and explaining the errors. Though it doesn’t have to take away from the film’s enjoyment, it’s sometimes fun to pick out the little inconsistencies in a movie. Deadpool has its fair share beyond the assumed familiarity with the X-Men. We first meet the villain Ajax and are left with so many questions. Deadpool obviously has history with the creep, and we learn that Ajax is also a survivor of the Weapon X program. Deadpool’s regeneration makes some sense, considering he’s given a gene that continually heals. Ajax probably shares that gene since he can regenerate. But it does little to explain his super-strength or his super reflexes, powers Deadpool doesn’t possess.

The strangest bit of Ajax’s story is when Deadpool calls him Francis. 

Granted it’s probably not the best name for a megalomaniacal villain. It’s a mystery why his real name is so important. Maybe it’s just embarrassing to him — it must be since Ajax appears to want it forgotten. It’s even stranger when Deadpool goes around beating up Ajax’s minions, demanding to know where Francis is hiding. Do they even know he’s called Francis? Does it even matter at this point? Not much considering the movie pulled off faithfully recreating Deadpool.

MONSTER MATCH

Deadpool’s one-sided friendship with Spider-Man, his tepid link to the X-Men, and Wade’s fanboy admiration for Captain America are well established and comical, but they’re nothing compared to his romantic affiliations. Who would expect anything less? He’s been linked to the super spy Black Widow and the mutant Siryn, each completely different and unlikely partners. But there’s only one woman that could stand toe to toe with Wade Wilson.

Dracula hires Deadpool to find and deliver Shiklah; she is the Queen of the Undead, and the vampire hopes to marry her so he can unite their empires. Arriving minutes before her sarcophagus is destroyed, Deadpool saves a grateful Shiklah – she decides that Deapool and not Dracula is her match. As in most Deadpool comics, nothing goes according to plan. The monstrous Shiklah becomes the perfect mate for Wade, even if he resisted her initial advances. After marrying and moving to New York, the Deadpool-Shiklah union didn’t last. Shiklah fully embraced her evil nature while Deadpool’s superhero adventures progressively clashed with her desires, and the couple became enemies. In true Deadpool style, Wade restored Dracula to help him defeat the woman the undead lord had wanted to marry – all in a day’s work for Deadpool.

DEADPOOL THE KILLER

It’s been established that Deadpool is weirdly sweet for a contract killer. There’s a limit to who he’ll terminate, but that doesn’t mean he won’t kill for money or pleasure. Wade Wilson has his share of hateful baddies he’s more than willing to send to an early grave; Evil Deadpool, made up of his old body parts, T-Ray, a man claiming to be the real Wade Wilson, Doctor Bong, a madman geneticist with a bell-shaped helmet, and a zombified Abe Lincoln.

By the end he goes after the book’s writers and artist, and even you, the comic book reader.

A list of enemies like that should keep Wade Wilson sufficiently busy, allowing him to evade the attention of the superhero set. But Deadpool can’t resist going after almost anyone. He’s tried to take out Daredevil to no avail, and his frequent contracts have put him at odds with Spider-Man, the X-Men and the Punisher. After a disguised Psycho-Man tricks him into therapy, Deadpool becomes completely unhinged. He decides to take out Psycho-Man and goes on a killing spree, first targeting the Fantastic Four. He then goes after the rest of the spandex community in a series appropriately titled Deadpool Kills the Marvel Universe. By the end he goes after the book’s writers and artist, and even you, the comic book reader.

SMASHING THE FOURTH WALL

In theater, the fourth wall is best described as an invisible wall the separates the actors from the audience. In comics it’s the similarly imaginary barrier between the characters and the reader. superheroes live on the page, generally unaware that they exist for your reading pleasure. In the Golden and Silver Ages of comics, it wasn’t uncommon for superheroes to speak directly to the reader, especially on covers. Grant Morrison’s Animal Man, Buddy Baker, most famously broke the fourth wall by confronting the writer and making a deal to stop the violence he’s subjected to in the comic.

Readers have come to expect that Wade Wilson will regularly disrupt a fight with useless dialogue – it’s especially fun when it’s directed at the reader. Deadpool has become the king of the fourth wall, periodically breaking it to engage you. It happened in the movie; it’s one of the most unorthodox yet endearing aspects of the character. In the Deadpool film, Wade speaks to the audience throughout, casually shifting from humor to action. In comics Wade first breaks the fourth wall in the hands of writer Joe Kelly, a tradition that carries through to today. It’s become a staple of the character that’s unlikely to change.

DEADPOOL KILLS DEADPOOL

Deadpool Kills Deadpool

You may want to sit for this last item on the list. After targeting the entire Marvel Universe, Deadpool set his sights on the only target left – himself. It’s part of what’s commonly called the Deadpool KillologyDeadpool Kills the Marvel Universe, Deadpool Killustrated, and Deadpool Kills Deadpool – the culmination of a murder spree that can only lead to himself. Wade gets in a pickle because of alternate versions of Deadpool that exist in different dimensions. He forms a group and embarks on adventures, calling the team-up the Deadpool Corps.

The team is made up of Lady Deadpool, a disembodied head called Headpool, an unkillable pooch named Dogpool, and Kid Deadpool.

It’s not the Deadpool Corps that Wade targets. Instead he goes after Dreadpool. You guessed it, this is yet another version of himself. Dreadpool dispatches the Deadpool Corps and Wade is bent on revenge. They meet in an epic clash, resulting in Dreadpool seeing the error of his ways. Deadpool manages what the title promises, and Wade kills himself – at least the version of himself called Dreadpool. It all sounds very final, but Deadpool lives to kill another day.

The post 21 Weird Facts About Deadpool (That Only Real Marvel Fans Know) appeared first on CBR.

Deadpool Tops Pennywise, Breaks It’s Box Office Record for R-Rated Film

Deadpool Tops Pennywise, Breaks It’s Box Office Record for R-Rated Film

After an impressive Thursday start, Deadpool 2 looks set to break yet another R-rated record with a massive Friday opening.

The sequel, which sees Ryan Reynolds return as the Merc with a Mouth, is estimated to have brought in $53 million yesterday, making for the biggest opening day for an R-Rated film; Friday’s record opening includes the $18.6 million the film pulled in from Thursday showings. The previous record holder was It which opened to $50.4 million last year. Should the numbers hold, Deadpool 2 is looking at a possible $133.5 million weekend opening, narrowly beating out its predecessor’s opening of $132.4 million two years ago.

RELATED: Deadpool 2 Shatters R-Rated Thursday Night Record

Deadpool 2 currently has an 84% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, which is slightly higher than the first film’s 83% rating, and an A cinemascore.
With $133.5 million, Deadpool 2 will finally unseat fellow Josh Brolin film, Avengers: Infinity War, which falls to second place after four weeks. That film is expected to take in another $27 million this weekend stateside, bringing the latest Avengers film closer to $600 million domestically.

Internationally, Deadpool 2 is expected to take in approximately $200 million — and that’s without China in the mix. It’ll be interesting to see how the film performs in the coming weeks as Lucasfilm’s Solo: A Star Wars Film is expected to take over the box office next weekend with $155 million domestically.

RELATED: Deadpool 2: Negasonic Warhead’s Girlfriend Isn’t Who You Thought She Was

In theaters nationwide, director David Leitch’s Deadpool 2 stars Ryan Reynolds as the titular Deadpool, Morena Baccarin as Vanessa, T.J. Miller as Weasel, Leslie Uggams as Blind Al, Brianna Hildebrand as Negasonic Teenage Warhead, Stefan Kapičić as Colossus, Zazie Beetz as Domino, Julian Dennison as Russell and Josh Brolin as Cable.

(via Variety)

The post Deadpool Tops Pennywise, Breaks It’s Box Office Record for R-Rated Film appeared first on CBR.

Why Lex Luthor Is Going to Break Bad Again in Justice League

Why Lex Luthor Is Going to Break Bad Again in Justice League

Even though longtime DC Comics villain Lex Luthor is currently working alongside the Justice League in the pages of current miniseries Justice League: No Justice, Luthor won’t be working with the superheroes for long.

In an exclusive interview with CBR, No Justice co-writer and upcoming Justice League scribe Scott Snyder reveals that Luthor eventually betrays the League and forms the first in-continuity incarnation of the Legion of Doom. And the reasons for Luthor’s return to villainy spin directly out of the events of the Snyder-penned No Justice and his previous miniseries Dark Nights: Metal.

“Part of the fun of No Justice for me is how it’s a bridge between Metal and all this new stuff in the Justice League group, so it’s going to tell you the story of why Luthor decides that maybe he’s made a mistake trying to be a hero all this time,” Snyder said. “The idea was looking at what happened in Metal with Black Manta, what happened with Sinestro when the Source Wall broke. All of these things are catalysts for Luthor to say, ‘You know what? Maybe being a hero — maybe the heroes themselves — are this fallacy. Maybe the whole thing is the wrong way for humans to be.'”

RELATED: INTERVIEW: Scott Snyder Shares the Secrets of DC’s New Legion of Doom

In the climactic end to Metal, the Source Wall surrounding the DC Universe was broken open. The breach led to the arrival of world-ending cosmic entities from beyond the universe threatening to consume Earth and Brainiac’s homeworld of Colu in No Justice. The otherworldly foes force the Justice League to join forces with several of their most iconic villains — including Lex Luthor — in a desperate bid to save both worlds. This unlikely alliance, unfortunately for the League, is already slated to come undone.

“Having seen what happens in No Justice, and how strong the force of Entropy is on Earth, it really gives him a glimpse into his possible purpose in life.” continued Snyder providing further insight on Luthor’s motivations. “The story is really about why, in this particular moment, an Injustice Gang, all that stuff, would be too small. We need something as big as the Legion of Doom.”

While the concept of the Legion of Doom was first created in 1978 for the DC animated series Challenge of the Superfriends, it has yet to make a full, in-continuity debut in the comics apart from Elseworlds stories with either the Injustice Gang or Secret Society of Supervillains usually uniting the antagonists of the DCU. Snyder’s upcoming Justice League run promises to change that and raise the stakes against the team.

Justice League #1 by Scott Snyder, Jim Cheung, and Jorge Jimenez is out on June 6.

The post Why Lex Luthor Is Going to Break Bad Again in Justice League appeared first on CBR.

DC All Access: Harley Quinn vs. Poison Ivy

DC All Access: Harley Quinn vs. Poison Ivy

In every relationship, there’s bound to be a few fights…and in the case of Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy, you know they’re going to be doozies.

‘Everyday Astronaut’ Tackles SpaceX Rocket Landings in Episode 2! – Space.com


Space.com

'Everyday Astronaut' Tackles SpaceX Rocket Landings in Episode 2!
Space.com
If you've ever wondered how SpaceX manages to bring its rockets back down to Earth, the Everyday Astronaut is here to help. In the second episode of the Facebook Watch series "Spacing Out with the Everyday Astronaut," which premieres Saturday (May 19) ...
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SpaceX Gets Backing For This Controversial Plan, Boosting 'Space Taxi'Investor's Business Daily
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Outer Places -The TeCake -Daily Enterpriser -Spaceflight News
all 12 news articles »

‘Everyday Astronaut’ Tackles SpaceX Rocket Landings in Episode 2!

If you've ever wondered how SpaceX manages to land its rockets, the Everyday Astronaut is here to help.

Deadpool 2 May Have Teased a Major X-Men Villain, Again

Deadpool 2 May Have Teased a Major X-Men Villain, Again

WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for Deadpool 2, in theaters now.


Deadpool 2 is demanding, requiring its viewers not only to keep up with the fast pace of its story and action sequences, but to catch a barrage of jokes, sly references and Easter eggs. This is a film that surely will become only more rewarding with repeated viewings. A lot of those nods have already been found, with cameos and teases dropped in just for fun. But there are still a few that make us wonder whether the film is building toward something, beyond an X-Force spinoff, of course.

RELATED: Deadpool 2 Got the Biggest Name Possible to Play its Surprise Villain

The sequel makes a subtle reference to a major X-Men villain, who was previously teased in the Fox franchise. This time, it’s a little more difficult to catch, but the nod is still there, and it once again comes in the form of a name: Essex. As in Nathaniel Essex, aka Mister Sinister.

deadpool 2 firefist

Early in the film, Deadpool joins Colossus and Negasonic Teenage Warhead as an X-Men trainee on a mission to stop a teenager, young Russell (aka Firefist, played by Julian Dennison), who’s attacking people in the streets. But Russell isn’t lashing out for no reason; he’s actually trying to escape his “school,” the Essex Home for Mutant Rehabilitation. It’s actually where mutant-fearing men conduct intensive experiments to try and suppress the powers of the children in their care.

In the comic books, Nathaniel Essex has always been one for genetic experiments and mutant/human DNA analysis, which makes it easy to believe that he might be behind this cruel school. To him, this could simply be another experiment to learn more about the response to mutant-suppression treatments.

Essex Corp briefcase

What’s more, Sinister doesn’t get his name from anywhere. He’s always been one to work more in the shadows and behind the scenes, which certainly lends credence to the idea that he’s behind this establishment. After all, in the post-credits scene of 2016’s X-Men: Apocalypse, three men who work for Essex Corp. walk into the Weapon X facility and collect the blood of Wolverine. It would later be used to create clone’s of the clawed mutant, X-23 and X-24, who were both seen in Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine swan song, Logan.

RELATED: Deadpool 2’s Topsy-Turvy Ending, Explained

This means the last three X-Men universe movies have featured Mister Sinister’s influence in one form or another. Now, there was a time when some believed Sinister would be the villain of Deadpool 2 — some even went so far as to theorize the character could be seen in the film’s Bob Ross-inspired teaser — but it has become increasingly clear Fox is playing the long game with the character.

As we already know that an X-Force movie is coming, perhaps that’s where it’s all been leading: Mister Sinister has slowly been built into the next big foe of Fox’s X-Men movie universe; all that remains is for him to finally step out of the shadows and reveal his hand.

Directed by David Leitch, Deadpool 2 stars Ryan Reynolds as Deadpool, Brianna Hildebrand as Negasonic Teenage Warhead, Leslie Uggams as Blind Al, Stefan Kapičić as the voice of Colossus, and Karan Soni as Dopinder, with newcomers Zazie Beetz as Domino, Josh Brolin as Cable and Julian Dennison as Russell. The film is playing in theaters everywhere.

The post Deadpool 2 May Have Teased a Major X-Men Villain, Again appeared first on CBR.

The 26 Most Important Marvel Cosmic Events Ever, Ranked

The 26 Most Important Marvel Cosmic Events Ever, Ranked

Marvel’s cosmic landscape has given readers some of the absolute best of the shared universe, and has shaped and inspired much of what movie goers love about the Marvel Cinematic Universe to date. In many ways, Marvel Comics has been rooted in the stars from go, with Fantastic Four #1 launching Marvel’s first family into space (where they were famously bombarded by cosmic rays), only to encounter the alien Skrulls in their next adventure.

As the cosmic landscape has grown from alien characters like Silver Surfer, Captain Marvel, and Galactus to cosmic entities like Eternity, Lord Chaos, and Master Order, events set light-years from New York have filled Marvel’s roster of stories. In modern comics throughout the ’00s, space-faring heroes like Nova and the Guardians of the Galaxy have held their own as fan-favorites, and the same can be said of cosmic villains like Thanos. Marvel’s 2018 core events are playing into the realm of the cosmic as well, with “Infinity Countdown” and the impending “Infinity Wars” set to shape the state of the shared universe. Ranking the entirety of incredible cosmic events like “Annihilation” and “Infinity Gauntlet” is no easy task, but nonetheless, below you’ll find a complete guide to Marvel’s cosmic events, from worst to best.

X-MEN & GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY: THE BLACK VORTEX

Black Vortex Guardians of The Galaxy

Following his work on the crossover between Guardians of the Galaxy and All-New X-Men in “The Trial of Jean Grey,” writer Brian Michael Bendis brought the teams together once more for a proper event in “The Black Vortex.” Frankly, the mega Marvel NOW! crossover might have benefited from Bendis’ sole writing duties, rather than sprawling across a vast array of tie-ins. At its core, “The Black Vortex” simply doesn’t offer enough story to justify its endless collection of pages, and offers very little to the overall legacy of Marvel cosmic comics.

Its overly reductive, but “The Black Vortex” is essentially a Dark Phoenix machine crafted by Celestial powers.

To its credit, the event draws in cosmic elements like Thane, son of Thanos, the Collector, and even the Black Order’s Ebony Maw. Similarly, Groot does find himself with enhanced cosmic powers, which is always a win. Unfortunately, this is far from enough to save a forgettable event that pales in comparison to the state of Marvel cosmic events only five years prior. To wit, the big moment of revelation of the event occurs when Kitty Pryde uses the Vortex to enhance her powers to the point she can phase an entire planet — at best an homage to the conclusion to Joss Whedon and John Cassaday’s work on Astonishing X-Men and at worst derivative refried plot.

THOR: BLOOD AND THUNDER

Thor vs Adam Warlock

Thor’s “warrior madness” was quite the ongoing driving plot during the Ron Marz written mid-’90s run on the character, ultimately leading to one of the more disappointing events of the decade in “Blood and Thunder.” Apart from sounding like a decent name for a Slayer cover band, “Blood and Thunder” is little more than a stretched out excuse for Thor to hit lots and lots of characters and things. As exposition throughout the event is all too eager to remind you, Thor’s totally lost his wits, and it’s up to the likes of Adam Warlock, the Infinity Watch, and — believe it or not — Thanos to keep him from destroying Asgard.

Although Thor’s always poised to hold his own among the biggest and best of Marvel cosmic, “Blood and Thunder” fails to live up to those expectations. While it’s hardly unique to superhero comics, the sheer volume of fights that even the simplest communication could have prevented is overbearing. Likewise, while it’s fun to see Thor match strength against Beta Ray Bill, Thanos, and even Odin, it’s less fun to see the hero callously backhand on and off again love interest, Lady Sif. There’s a kernel of interesting story throughout, but “Blood and Thunder” is an overall let down.

CHAOS WAR

thunderbird chaos war

Spinning out of the pages of Greg Pak and Fred Van Lente’s excellent work co-writing Incredible Hercules, the “Chaos War” event landed with minimal fanfare or legacy. Although the core memorable moments are an extension of Hercules’ story, and the return of various dead Avengers, “Chaos War” also boasts substantial cosmic elements. As a matter of fact, it could be argued that the Chaos King’s rise and desire to completely unravel life in the universe operates on a scale similar to cosmic events like “Infinity Gauntlet.”

Since the stakes are so egregiously high, and the power sets so unwieldy, it is left up to Hercules and Thor to assemble the “God Squad” in an effort to prevent the Chaos King’s mad schemes.

At the end of the day, “Chaos War” is a firmly middle of the road event that fails to capture enough of the promise from Pak and Van Lente’s combined storytelling with the characters of Amadeus Cho and Hercules up to that point. As with any modern event that plays with resurrection and returning characters, there is meaningful fallout. Nonetheless, the absolute best that can be said for the event is that it operates in a relatively tight set of tie-ins and crossovers, and effectively concludes an era of excellent Hercules comic books.

INFINITY CRUSADE

It will always remain the unsatisfying, largely overlooked conclusion to the early ’90s Infinity saga, but Infinity Crusade has some compelling ideas. Much like he did the the universal church of truth in the mid ’70s, writer Jim Starlin continues to skewer religious dogma in a direct way few superhero comics before or since have even approached. And much like we saw in the preceding Infinity War, it’s largely up to Thanos and Adam Warlock, working together again, to prevent disaster on a cosmic scale.

Unfortunately, after the cosmic landscape altering action of Infinity Gauntlet, and the zany team-ups between the likes of Kang the Conqueror and Doctor Doom in Infinity War, the “Crusade” is a let down. Starlin is doing familiar work on themes around absolute certainty, religion, and power structures, but Adam Warlock’s “good half,” aka The Goddess, just isn’t all that compelling of an evil entity. Likewise, so many of the Marvel heroes are mindwiped into doing the bidding of The Goddess, that the event becomes a frustrating meditation on what the Marvel Universe would look like if half the heroes suddenly “got religion.” As a standalone, Infinity Crusade is passable, but it does work better when read as a part of the complete original Infinity saga.

X-MEN: RISE AND FALL OF THE SHI’AR EMPIRE

Gabriel Summers aka Vulcan

Spiraling out of the revelations in X-Men: Deadly Genesis, Vulcan (aka Gabriel Summers, the third Summers brother) took to space to seek revenge on Emperor D’ken and the Shi’ar Empire. Long story short, Vulcan is successful, and murderizes Emperor D’ken in front of the whole Shi’ar guard. Frankly, it was a long time coming and couldn’t have happened to a crueler tyrant. Lest we forget, there’s a long standing X-Men theory that D’ken is responsible for fathering a fourth Summers brother, aka Adam-X the Xtreme. With this assassination well and out of the way the throne is warmed up for the all new Emperor Vulcan, ruler of the Shi’ar!

At the end of the day, though, the best thing about “The Rise and Fall of the Shi’ar Empire” is the name and concept.

Despite Ed Brubaker’s involvement as writer, the event is a middling cosmic affair, featuring prominent roles for Havok, Polaris, and Professor X. “Rise and Fall” does do the legwork provided to set the stage for Vulcan and Gladiator in “War of Kings,” but the story doesn’t leave too many memorable moments behind otherwise. The best of the event is what happens to the Uncanny X-Men and Marvel cosmic lines after this point in time.

OPERATION: GALACTIC STORM

Operation Galactic Storm

“Operation: Galactic Storm” suffers primarily from two major hurdles. First, the plot is a severe rehash of the more well-known “Kree/Skrull War,” with the Skrulls merely replaced by the Shi’ar. Perhaps more importantly, “Operation: Galactic Storm” also seems to run forever, with well over 20 tie-ins when things are all said and done. That said, it can’t be said that this Avengers cosmic event doesn’t know how to deliver on an unfathomable scale. Much of the event centers on the creation and use of a Shi’ar “nega-bomb,” which does in fact detonate and terminate billions of Kree lifeforms. In actuality, it took nearly a decade of publishing time for the Kree to return to their previous status as one of the galaxy’s top civilizations.

Intriguingly, the event centers very much on Quasar, who has very much become an underutilized cosmic player in present day Marvel Comics. To its credit, “Galactic Storm” also taps into the personality differences of Captain America and Iron Man, culminating in their difference of opinion on a vote to kill the Kree Supreme Intelligence. Iron Man and various Avengers are in agreement with shellhead defy Captain America’s orders to let the Supreme Intelligence live (or so it seems).

MARVEL UNIVERSE: THE END

Marvel Universe The End Thanos

Although he’d been at it for decades, it actually took until the early ’00s for Thanos to well and truly wipe out the entire Marvel Universe. “The End” also makes a strong run at the award for strangest Marvel cosmic event (especially among those involving Thanos). Written and drawn by Jim Starlin, with inks by Al Milgrom, Marvel Universe: The End is six issues spanning nearly all of known time and space. The cleanest definition of the event focuses on the cosmic energy of “The Heart of the Universe,” and its use to wipe out Marvel heroes by the time traveling pharaoh Akhenanten.

The most memorable moments of the event center on Thanos once again achieving unbridled power, only to successfully destroy and recreate the entire universe.

Amazingly, the entire series is so unwieldy that Marvel editorial has stated it simply remains out of established continuity. In general, “Marvel Universe: The End” is most noteworthy for effectively setting the stage toward the 12-issue solo Thanos series that writer Jim Starlin would deliver the following year. As such, the event becomes a must-read for Thanos die-hards (die-harders?) only, without much else to grasp on to unless you’re already all in on ol’ purple puss.

MAXIMUM SECURITY

“Maximum Security” is a fun concept that falls victim to bad timing. As Ronan the Accuser boisterously declares on the cover of Maximum Security #1, “From this day forward Earth shall be a prison!” The early ’00s event doesn’t quite fit in with the Marvel Knights era of rejuvenated creative energy, and occurs just a few years too early to connect in any meaningful way to “Avengers: Disassembled” and “Annihilation” sparking the modern era of Earth bound and cosmic Marvel events. Likewise, the core “Avengers Infinity” squad is a tougher sell for modern readers, with a lineup of Thor (great), Quasar (uh-huh), Starfox (sure), Moondragon (yeah…), Photon (still using that name, huh?), Tigra (in space?), and Jack of Hearts (nope).

Conceptually, though, “Maximum Security” is very much in line with lines of thinking that writers like Brian Michael Bendis have expanded in more recent years, with various alien civilizations seeking to prevent Earth heroes from further interference on a galactic scale. Plus, there are awesome cosmic concepts at play throughout the event, like Ego the Living Planet being imprisoned on Earth, where he begins to grow and attach himself to the planet! Not to mention the fact that Quasar’s plan for containing the growing Ego involves storing him in his Quantum Bands!

THE KORVAC SAGA

Your affinity for late ’70s Marvel cosmic, the Avengers, and the original Guardians of the Galaxy will go a long way to determining your worth of the classic “Korvac Saga.” Indeed, Michael Korvac comes from the original Guardians 31st century, and essentially becomes a cyborg hellbent on uncovering and understanding the Power Cosmic. Like many “noble” villains, Korvac’s aims are to force the Earth into his version of a paradise, and arguably his desires may have been genuine.

The most memorable development from the saga comes when the combined might of the Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy proves nowhere near potent enough to combat the near omnipotence of Michael Korvac.

The god-like threat doesn’t just beat the Avengers, he mows them down with ease, and literally leaves the floor of his Queens, New York home scattered with the bodies of shattered heroes. The Avengers and Guardians are only able to “defeat” Korvac when he commits a generally difficult to understand version of self-righteous suicide. In a truly cosmic turn, Korvac’s suicide is at least in part centered on his relationship challenges with girlfriend Carina, who is herself the daughter of The Collector. Truth be told, it isn’t truly a cosmic comic until an elder of the universe is concocting an incomprehensible plan.

SECRET INVASION

The Skrulls have been unsuccessfully trying to invade planet Earth since Fantastic Four #2 (when Johnny Storm showed them a copy of a Marvel monster comic and they freaked out), and in 2007 they came as close to absolute victory as they ever may. Long known as warring shape-shifters, the Skrulls developed the ability to scientifically mirror the heroes of Earth that have vexed them throughout time. By implanting sleeper Skrulls in all areas of Earth (S.H.I.E.L.D., the Avengers, mansion cleaning staff) the Skrulls are able to completely take the Earth by surprise.

In a lot of ways, the build up to “Secret Invasion”, and the mystery behind the villainous forces laying in wait for the New Avengers is much more tantalizing than the actual event. We still get excited thinking about the shadowy benefactor funding Electro’s breakout of the super-villain prison, The Raft. Nonetheless, the tag line “Who can you trust?” plays out effectively, with heroes completely in the dark about how might actually turn out to be a Skrull. Of all the Brian Michael Bendis written Marvel events of the ’00s, “Secret Invasion” is truly the most cosmic, relying on the reader’s knowledge of the status of the Skrull population after events like Galactus and “Annihilation” struck their population.

INFINITY WAR

Now forever known as the title of Avengers 3, “Infinity War” the comic book event will go down as a forever underrated sequel to 1991’s Infinity Gauntlet. Admittedly, fans of the MCU version of the story turning to Infinity War #1 for similarities are in for a wild ride. For all intents and purposes, “Infinity War” the comic book event picks up where Avengers: Infinity War ends.

Thanos is living his best retirement out on the farm, when the Magus — Adam Warlock’s evil half — returns with the full might of five cosmic cubes and an army of Earth hero dopplegangers!

“Infinity War'” delivers deliciously enjoyable team-ups like Thanos working with Warlock and the Infinity Watch (including “daughter” Gamora and nemesis Drax the Destroyer), and Doctor Doom and Kang the Conqueror scouring the edges of the war in their own pursuit of power (silently vowing to murder the other the entire time!). Not to mention the fact that Galactus recruits Doctor Strange in his own efforts to prevent the Magus from universal domination and destruction. As a whole, the event is uneven and descends into writer Jim Starlin’s penchant for swollen philosophizing, but there aren’t too many books that rival the scope on display.

ANNIHILATION CONQUEST

Annihilation Conquest

While not as good as the original, the sequel to “Annihilation” is an essential driving engine behind one of the greatest moments in Marvel cosmic history, and the launching pad for the modern Guardians of the Galaxy. Sure, the Annihilation: Star-Lord miniseries is a Guardians try out in which Groot still speaks in full sentences like a terrifyingly menacing Monarch, but not everything finds its groove right out of the gate. For all intents and purposes, “Conquest” does a respectable job following through on the all-or-nothing stakes of “Annihilation” without simply reheating the initial threat posed by Annihilus and his unending hordes. That said, because of what grew from the event’s legacy (aka the Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning written Guardians of the Galaxy ongoing) it’s hard to view the event as much more than a stepping stone to bigger and better modern cosmic stories.

More than anything, “Annihilation: Conquest” is memorable for pulling in unexpected Marvel Universe regulars and adding them to the cosmic tapestry. The Phalanx (previously peaking with X-Men: The Animated Series and a legacy of “the weird X-Men crossover that launched Generation X“) are the most obvious cosmic threats here, until revelations of the High Evolutionary and Ultron come into play.

THE KREE/SKRULL WAR

Kree Skrull War

The early 1970’s “Kree/Skrull War” is one of the most iconic Avengers stories, with a legacy that extends all the way to mid ’00s stories like New Avengers: Illuminati. Writer Roy Thomas joins (primarily) artist Neal Adams to craft one of the farthest reaching Avengers stories to that point in Marvel history. The event spans the history of the Inhumans and the Kree empire, with the Supreme Intelligence operating as a primary driver of the narrative. The event ran for nearly a year of Avengers comics, spanning issues #89 to #97.

As a whole, the “Kree/Skrull War” is an impressive feat, calling back to the history of Marvel Comics while simultaneously developing visions of the future.

Perhaps best of all, writer Roy Thomas finds inspiration in the pages of Fantastic Four #2, and has three cows attack the Vision, only to reveal they are the Skrulls imprisoned on Earth by Reed Richards nearly a decade ago in Marvel Comics publication time. The event spans a wide variety of characters and locations from there, and introduces the bonkers concpet of Rick Jones’ “Destiny Force.” It’s an all-time classic for good reason, whether talking cosmic comics or just Marvel in general.

WAR OF KINGS/REALM OF KINGS

black bolt war of kings

For any number of reasons, the Marvel cosmic collection of civilizations are far more inclined to support monarchies than us lowly Terrans. “War of Kings” taps into this wealth of royalty with the likes of Black Bolt and the Inhumans, Vulcan, Gladiator and the Shi’ar, and Blastaar, King of the Negative Zone! Likewise, “War of Kings” finds the cosmic foundations formed in the wake of “Annihilation” suddenly at odds with one another rather than an existential, rapidly accelerating outside threat. The Kree and Shi’ar empires are the primary civilizations at war, meaning it’s a challenge for the rest of the galaxy to avoid the fallout of their bloodshed.

“War of Kings” is also better for more noticeable connections to typically Earth centric heroes like the X-Men and Inhumans. Readers also get tie-in issues from Nova and Guardians of the Galaxy, two comic books firing on all cylinders as they head into the battles of raging monarchies. Alongside the more loosely focused follow-up event “Realm of Kings,” the modern Marvel cosmic scene proves once again the depth and variety of its reach. There’s a good reason fans look back on this time in Marvel cosmic history as an all-time high the publisher would be wise to return to once more.

THE THANOS IMPERATIVE

thanos-imperative

The best Guardians of the Galaxy run of all time concludes with the return of Thanos, an unlikely ally (and inevitable enemy) for the team’s battle against the imminent threat of the Cancer-verse. The six issue event and Ignition and Devastation bookends effectively conclude the Marvel cosmic era that began with the preludes to “Annihilation” (or arguably as far back as the Drax The Destroyer: Earthfall miniseries). Everything that had been building in the pages of “War of Kings,” and the ongoing Guardians of the Galaxy and Nova comic book series comes to an explosive end in the pages of The Thanos Imperative.

The “Fault” in the universe (which Adam Warlock and the Guardians of the Galaxy had been furiously resealing) remains wide open after the events of “War of Kings”.

This gives the alternate reality Captain Mar-Vell of the Cancer-verse unfettered access to a new cosmos. In a clever callback to Thanos’ and Captain Marvel’s relationship, this Mar-Vell of the Cancer-verse found a way to not only prevent the iconic “Death of Captain Marvel,” but to ensure a deathless state for all those in his realm. Naturally this is an affront to everything Thanos, as the avatar of Death, holds dear, leading him to outwit Mar-Vell into an enraged destruction of the threatening universe.

THE LIFE AND DEATH OF CAPTAIN MARVEL

captain-mar-vell-thanos

In February 1973, during an issue of Iron Man (#55 to be exact), creator Jim Starlin introduced the characters Drax the Destroyer, all of Titan, and Thanos. The first appearance of Thanos sets up his role as the “black sheep” of Titan’s royal family, although his ambitions prove rather quickly to extend beyond the all too familiar tales of planetary takeover. Jim Starlin moved from this one-off work on Iron Man to directing Captain Marvel, where from issues #25 through #34, readers get the first major Thanos story.

It’s a great early ’70s Marvel cosmic story, in which Thanos seeks the power of the Cosmic Cube to ascend to godhood, with only Captain Marvel (and of course Rick Jones) around to stop him. Well, and the help of Drax the Destroyer and Titan. Thanos’ schemes with the cube are undone when Captain Marvel karate chops the cube out of power (hooray comics!) but the set-up for the mad Titan is clear: Thanos perpetually aspires to ultimate power, and using cosmic weaponry — in this case the Cosmic Cube — to get there. His only downfall is his own ego. As Captain Marvel says of Thanos, “What fun is there in becoming God if there is no one to watch?”

AVENGERS VS. THANOS

Thanos would return in 1975 in the pages of Jim Starlin’s run on Warlock in a story that would ultimately conclude in Avengers Annual #7 and Marvel-Two-In-One Annual #2 in 1977. The Warlock stories feature the most important development for Thanos, as the warring cosmic villain begins displaying more of his defining pragmatism and master strategy. Thanos lurks in the shadows, releasing Gamora as his spy to infiltrate Warlock’s inner circle, until the threat of Adam Warlock’s evil alter ego The Magus becomes too dangerous to leave unchecked. Thanos then convinces Warlock and company to work with him in an effort to prevent The Magus from obtaining ultimate power.

Ever the deceiver, Warlock’s willingness to work with Thanos backfires.

Thanos reveals his ultimate plan to wipe out all life: “For now, nothing can halt my ultimate plan for total stellar genocide. Soon, all who must suffer through that which is called life shall be granted the peace that only passing the great divide can bring! Yes, I shall grant them this tranquility, for am I not Thanos? Am I not the Dark Side? Am I not Death?” Amazingly, too, the story essentially captures an Infinity Gauntlet prelude in brief, as Thanos actually collects six “soul gems.” The titan is undone again by Warlock and the Avengers, until his eventual return in the pages of Silver Surfer.

PLANET HULK

planet hulk vs silver surfer

Launching the Hulk into space proved to be one of the most effective changes of scenery the character’s ever known. Oddly, it’s far from the first time the character has been launched into the stars in an effort to remove his violent threat from the planet (a similar maneuver was performed by the US military as early as Incredible Hulk #3: “See the Hulk banished to outer space!”). With “Planet Hulk,” though, writer Greg Pak and artist Carlo Pagulayan had the Marvel Illuminati of Iron Man, Reed Richards, Black Bolt, Professor X and Doctor Strange fire Hulk to an “uninhabited planet” so he can finally know peace. But mostly, also, to protect themselves from the damage the Hulk causes.

Instead, the Hulk’s craft crashes on Sakaar, where the “Green Scar” would go on to become a gladiator, rebel leader, and emperor of a people. Throughout it all, Pak and Pagulayan showed an uncanny understanding of what makes the Hulk tick, and built a thoroughly fascinating history and culture within the fabric of Sakaar and its people. It was perhaps inevitable that “Planet Hulk” would build toward the green rage monster’s return to Earth in “World War Hulk,” but the hero was never more at home that during the brief moments of happiness on Sakaar.

SECRET WARS (1984)

While the artistic inauthenticity of Secret Wars is well documented (the series is a blatant attempt to sell toys, and even the title is market research masquerading as nomenclature), you’ll never convince us this early Marvel cosmic event is anything but a blast. Writer (and then editor-in-chief) Jim Shooter and artist Mike Zeck brought a collection of Earth’s mightiest heroes and foulest villains together on Battleworld where a mysterious cosmic entity known as the Beyonder promised: “Slay your enemies and all you desire shall be yours!”, an offer that villains like the Wrecking Crew and Ultron are all too eager to take up.

However, the likes of Galactus, Doctor Doom, and Reed Richards are set on exploring the mysterious source of power that has so effortlessly uprooted their lives.

The event is stacked with era defining moments (Hulk lifting a mountain, Magneto creepily romancing Janet Van Dyne, Spider-Man discovering his black symbiote costume), none more so than Doctor Doom’s valiant efforts to usurp the Beyonder’s power. Against all odds, Doctor Doom succeeds, and destroys all of Earth’s heroes, only to find himself undone by a strange acceptance of an insane Klaw as his right-hand lackey. Either way, at the end of the day, it’s a great early Marvel event and an essential Doctor Doom story.

INFINITY

If one word sums up “Infinity”, it’s bold. Thanos invading Earth and threatening to massacre children is somehow only a piece of the threat facing the Avengers. The heroes simultaneously need to confront the growing threat of “The Builder’s” and all that their incursions into the universe entail. Likewise, Infinity incontrovertibly changes the landscape of Marvel’s Inhumans, and set the entire Marvel Universe on a headfirst collision with 2015’s Secret Wars. Creative talents Jonathan Hickman and Jim Cheung do excellent work throughout, including the introduction of the instantly movie ready Black Order.

All of which of course overlooks the boldness of the following: you have a writer apart from Jim Starlin laying claim to the vaunted history of Marvel’s cosmic “Infinity” events. Setting up a modern event against the likes of Infinity Gauntlet is a potential recipe for failure, but Hickman and Cheung face the challenge with little difficulty. One of the only challenges to Infinity is the fact that it falls very much in the middle of Jonathan Hickman’s extended run on the Avengers lineup of Marvel comics, and that reading the event as a standalone without the full knowledge of the Avengers comics is nowhere near as satisfying.

THANOS QUEST

There’s a reason “Infinity Gauntlet” is able to reach such instant stakes, and it’s because Thanos does all the legwork of collecting the Infinity Gems throughout the “Rebirth of Thanos” and “Thanos Quest.” Alongside the preceding issues of Silver Surfer (also by Jim Starlin and Ron Lim), which delivered the rebirth of Thanos and elucidated his plans to restore universal balance through interstellar “euthansia,” Thanos Quest #1 and #2 fully flesh out the mad Titan for a ’90s cosmic audience.

Mistress Death has tasked the Mad Titan with the death of half the universe, and the Infinity Well has granted him the knowledge of tools to help him achieve this goal.

While Avengers: Infinity War spends a good deal of time (no spoilers, we promise!) focusing on Thanos’ efforts to collect the Infinity Stones, Thanos Quest tells a similar adventure with so much more va riety of the Marvel cosmic hierarchy. Thanos comes face to face with Elders of the Universe like the Champion, the Collector, the Gardener, the Runner, and ultimately the Grand Master, not to mention the poor, poor In-Betweener. The strategic brilliance of Thanos is on full display as he outwits the Champion in battle, turns the Runner and Collector against each other for two Gems, and turns a virtual reality fight to the death into a death trap for the Grandmaster.

INFINITY GAUNTLET

The Infinity Gauntlet

From “Come and Get Me!” to “Snap!” few Marvel cosmic events are as iconic or defining as Jim Starlin and George Perez’s work on “Infinity Gauntlet.” After acquiring the completed set of Infinity Gems in Thanos Quest, the mad Titan gets right to work snapping out half of all life in the universe in the first issue of the event! His Lady Death remains forever unimpressed by his displays of tortuous, cruel affection, but the heroes of Earth feel the weight of his power in full. In an instant, the Marvel Universe loses the Fantastic Four and many additional heroes, while out in the streets of New York City, friends turn towards vanished friends and mother’s turn towards harrowingly empty strollers.

Thanos would go on to develop more nuanced philosophies, but in “Infinity Gauntlet,” he’s at his absolute most manically nihilistic, forcing the orbit of planets to spell his name in what Mephisto, the devil himself, labels “depraved creativity.” There’s little doubt that the revived Warlock, Gamora and Pip the Troll will lead the remaining heroes of Earth to some sort of resolution that restores the deceased, but the impact of Thanos’ destruction is fully felt. Forget saving the planet — the stakes are half of all life itself anywhere it may exist.

ANNIHILATION

Marvel cosmic wasn’t necessarily dead before “Annihilation” rolled around, but apart from a Drax miniseries here and a Thanos ongoing there, it was certainly on life support. Impressively, “Annihilation” not only kicked off an epic, universe spanning event, but it rejuvenated nearly every conceivable corner of the Marvel cosmic spacescape. The event acts like superglue across disparate elements of the Marvel cosmic world, drawing in seemingly unrelated characters like Nova, Star-Lord, Drax, and Gamora, while simultaneously developing an all-new cosmic threat in the form of Annihilus (previously confined to mostly Fantastic Four stories set in the Negative Zone), here in league with Thanos.

More so than perhaps any cosmic event between 2000 to 2010, “Annihilation” makes incredibly great use of tie-in miniseries.

Indeed, by the time readers launch into the main event proper with Annihilation #1, the Nova Corps have been decimated, the Annihilation Wave is fully locked in universal war, and Thanos’ schemes to uncover the cosmic powers of Galactus and Silver Surfer are already in full swing. Writer Keith Giffen does some of his absolute best Marvel work building a cosmic tapestry that weaves in a mature Richard Rider, reborn Peter Quill (nearly unrecognizable compared to his MCU Star-Lord persona), and countless other players that have become staples since this time.

THE COMING OF GALACTUS

Before events were but a glimmer in Jim Shooter’s eye,  in 1966 Jack Kirby and Stan Lee were bringing a multi-part cosmos spanning epic to the pages of Fantastic Four #48 through Fantastic Four #50. With the benefit of hindsight, it’s absolutely astonishing how much ground Kirby and Lee cover in essentially two and a half full issues. “The Coming of Galactus” establishes the great world devourer, the Silver Surfer, the Watcher, the Ultimate Nullifier, and finds time to continue the ongoing Inhumans plot in the pages of FF.

Kirby and Lee would of course also go on to establish an expanding cosmic Marvel scene in the pages of Thor, including a battle royale between Galactus and Ego the Living Planet! It hits unprecedented heights with this story, though, as the Fantastic Four are forced to threaten to destroy everything with the Ultimate Nullifier unless Galactus promises to leave Earth alone. Not to mention the awesome trivia factoid that Galactus originally appears with a giant letter “G” on his chest and a green and red color scheme! It’s certainly better than the cloud Galactus from the 2000’s Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, but we’ll take the more familiar purple armor any time.

DARK PHOENIX SAGA

Despite very relatable, human emotions and problems, the X-Men have long held a fascination with the cosmos. Story arcs like the “Brood Saga” make it clear how entertaining the merry mutants can be off planet. Of course, nothing tops the “Dark Phoenix Saga,” running through the pages of Uncanny X-Men from issues #129 to #137, and building throughout the series for dozens of issues prior. The mysterious cosmic entity that merged with Jean Grey during a near-death re-entry into Earth’s atmosphere begins to manipulate more and more of her personality until she completely transforms into “Dark Phoenix.”

With omega level power coursing through her, Jean and the Phoenix destroy an entire planet of broccoli people, landing Jean and the X-Men on the Shi’ar empire’s radar.

Rather understandably, Empress Lilandra and the Shi’ar argue that Jean can’t be allowed to carry on with such uncontrollable power at her disposal. The X-Men stand by their founding member and fight for her life in trial by combat on the Earth’s moon against the Shi’ar royal guard. It’s an all time great battle, with Chris Claremont and John Byrne creating unrivaled emotional stakes as Jean and Scott Summers realize this may truly be the end.

SECRET WARS (2015)

All hail Doom. The final stroke in Jonathan Hickman’s Marvel Universe work could have easily gone quickly off the rails. After all, the 2015 Secret Wars is a rebrand of an existing Marvel Universe cosmic event, and for all intents and purposes, the event pulled an Age of Apocalypse,” with every single Marvel title pausing because “Everything is Secret Wars!” Reunited with artist Esad Ribic, Hickman delivered a perfect conclusion to themes and development he’d built through the likes of Fantastic Four and Avengers.

Factor in an onslaught of alternate reality tie-ins (not to be confused with “Onslaught” tie-ins) of generally very high caliber, and Secret Wars (2015) is the most entertaining Marvel comics playground in the history of the publisher. Admittedly, much of the cosmic appeal of the event stems from ideas more typically associated with the DC Universe, as Doctor Doom fends off the collision of a near infinite supply of Earths across the multiverse. At its core, though, Secret Wars (2015) is Marvel through and through, with cosmic favorites like Thanos, Groot, and Star-Lord all playing essential roles in the event’s conclusion prior to the inevitable showdown between Reed Richards and Victor Von Doom. After all: everything lives!

The post The 26 Most Important Marvel Cosmic Events Ever, Ranked appeared first on CBR.

Avengers: Infinity War Reveals Digital HD Release Date

Avengers: Infinity War Reveals Digital HD Release Date

Fans won’t have to wait long to own a copy of Avengers: Infinity War for themselves. The blockbuster film, which is now available for pre-order, will release on Digital and 4K UHD on July 31.

The announcement, which came via Twitter, did not mention when the Blu-ray and DVD releases of the film would happen. However, physical releases typically follow a week or two after digital, so it’s probably safe to expect the film to hit shelves in early August.

RELATED: Doctor Strange Conjures a Magical Infinity War Figure From Hot Toys

Avengers: Infinity War has earned $1.7 billion at the worldwide box office so far, making it the highest-grossing superhero film of all time, out-earning fellow Marvel Cinematic Universe crossover The Avengers, which earned $1.51 billion in 2012. While Infinity War is well on its way to potentially become the first non-December release to earn $2 billion at the global box office, it faces stiff competition from Deadpool 2 this weekend and Solo: A Star Wars Story leading into Memorial Day weekend.

In theaters now, Avengers: Infinity War stars Robert Downey Jr., Josh Brolin, Mark Ruffalo, Tom Hiddleston, Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Jeremy Renner, Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Olsen, Sebastian Stan, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Bettany, Samuel L. Jackson, Cobie Smulders, Benedict Wong, Zoe Saldana, Karen Gillan, Vin Diesel, Dave Bautista, Pom Klementieff, Scarlett Johansson, Tom Holland and Anthony Mackie.

KEEP READING: Infinity War Passes Jurassic World to Become Biggest Summer Movie Ever

The post Avengers: Infinity War Reveals Digital HD Release Date appeared first on CBR.

Melania Trump Returns To White House After Kidney Procedure

The first lady had been recovering at Walter Reed medical center since Monday, when she underwent an embolization procedure to treat the kidney condition.

What Batwoman’s Arrival May Mean For the Arrowverse – and For Fans

What Batwoman’s Arrival May Mean For the Arrowverse – and For Fans

Batwoman, cousin of the Dark Knight himself, is coming to the Arrowverse as part of this fall’s yearly crossover.

There’s been no news related to the CW’s popular DCTV series that’s quite as big or shocking as this for, well, years. It’s been a quiet rule in the Warner Bros. offices that Batman was untouchable. Fox’s Gotham got around this by having the series focused on a young Bruce Wayne, and the Arrowverse has, by and large, done nothing but make vague references to both sides of Bruce’s life existing in the worlds of Supergirl and Green Arrow. But if there’s a show based in the present day DC Universe, there’s certainly going to be questions about whether Batman, Wonder Woman and Superman exist there as well, and what stage of their heroic lives they’re in. To tease the answer but never actually give it has been the way they’ve operated.

Until now.

RELATED: Batwoman Joins the Arrowverse in Next Major Crossover

Even going as far back as Birds of Prey, which starred Batman’s daughter, the character has never been fully featured in a modern live action show. Batwoman’s inclusion in the Arrowverse doesn’t entirely change that, but what it does do is free up the potential for the rest of the expansive Batfamily to make the leap to television with their superheroic identities intact. Characters like Orphan, Red Hood or Spoiler can theoretically arrive in any of the Arrowverse shows, and it would feel completely natural now that Batwoman has established there are nocturnal superheroes in Gotham City.

There are some characters who can never truly be a part of this universe, of course; Jim Gordon has no real reason to leave Gotham, and Robin already has a TV show of his own in the near future. Basically, some heavy hitters probably can’t be used in the Arrowverse, but there are numerous second stringers in Batman’s corner of the DCU that have compelling stories to tell without the Dark Knight showing up.

RELATED: Arrowverse Heroes Assemble in New Season Key Art

If there’s any downside to this, it’s that it seemingly says that Batwoman won’t be having a solo movie of her own any time soon, which may be disappointing to her fans. The Arrowverse and the DCEU have always had a strange relationship where some characters can be used in the shows, but only until they’ve got a movie lined up, as is the case with Deadshot, Deathstroke and Amanda Waller. (It’s still unclear just how The Flash will work around the eventual movie starring Ezra Miller’s version of Barry Allen.) That said, Kate is a pretty high tier Batman character and her inclusion indicates that the lines may be starting to weaken, if ever so slightly.

There are a lot of questions still to be answered about Batwoman and her role in the Arrowverse, but even so, her inclusion means something. The Arrowverse potentially has more toys to play with than ever, and considering just how varied and eclectic Gotham is, it’s an occasion well worth celebrating.

The post What Batwoman’s Arrival May Mean For the Arrowverse – and For Fans appeared first on CBR.

I Have Over 96 Pairs of Leggings and These Are the Ones I Actually Wear Over and Over Again

Even with so many options, I gravitate to the same pairs of leggings over and over. Here are my favorite leggings for different types of workouts.

EXCL. PREVIEW: The Queen is Desperate for Allies in Mera: Queen of Atlantis #4

EXCL. PREVIEW: The Queen is Desperate for Allies in Mera: Queen of Atlantis #4

Mera is short on allies, and that means she might have to put her trust in some less-than-reputable characters — including her ex-husband Nereus — in our preview of next week’s Mera: Queen of Atlantis #4.

Writer Dan Abnett and artist Lan Medina team up for part four of this six-issue miniseries, but even though the spotlight’s on Mera, there’s still the matter of a certain Ocean Master that’s cause for concern. Has his love for his family helped shape Orm into the kind of man Mera can actually trust? Or will he simply turn his back on her when the time is right?

RELATED: Aquaman’s Current Arc Has Fundamentally Changed Mera

Check out the issue’s solicitation text and CBR’s exclusive preview below:

MERA, QUEEN OF ATLANTIS #4

  • Dan Abnett (w) • Lan Medina (a)
  • Cover: Nicola Scott
  • Desperate for a new ally in the fight for the soul of Atlantis, Mera turns to her ex-husband Nereus, the king of Xebel! But even after winning his favor in a deadly clash, can someone like Nereus ever be trusted? And what of Ocean Master’s promise to return to the surface? Is there anyone Mera can trust?
  • Rating: T
  • In Shops: May 23
  • SRP: $3.99

KEEP READING: DC Comics’ Aquaman ‘Reboots’ Mera Ahead of Her Solo Comic Launch

The post EXCL. PREVIEW: The Queen is Desperate for Allies in Mera: Queen of Atlantis #4 appeared first on CBR.

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