Tuesday, June 30, 2009

New Arrivals: July 1, 2009

Death in comics doesn't mean much in the long run if you're a big-name character. Sure, Superman died, but he came back. Batman died (and I'm still not convinced that Bruce Wayne is dead), and Dick Grayson has filled his cowl. And Captain America was ruthlessly gunned down after the tumultuous events of Civil war, leading to Bucky Barne's ascension to the shield. But you had to know that Steve Rogers wouldn't stay down for long. This week, Marvel will release Captain America: Reborn #1 into the hands of the masses, days away from the stirring Fourth of July holiday in America. Marvel couldn't have asked for a more patriotic tie-in (unless July 4th was on a Wednesday). Ed Brubaker is writing the series with Bryan Hitch doing the art. The book follows the events of Captain America #600, as Steve Rogers' closest friends and allies may have found a way to bring back the original Captain America. The Red Skull is involved however, which means that things might not be as they seem. There are a whopping five different covers for the book: one by Hitch, one by Alex Ross (of course), one by the man Joe Quesada himself and two by John Cassaday (one in color and one sketched). You can check out all five covers below. Enjoy! New Arrivals: July 1, 2009

Defense with the BoomPick

New comic book day is upon us once again already. That means it's time for my pick of the week. After reviewing all the new comics coming out there were really only two that I know I am going to get but can only pick one for my choice of the week. It was a tough choice, but I decided to go with Deadpool: Merc with a Mouth #1 brought to you by Marvel. In a odd twist for our favorite character Deadpool, he is sent to the Savage Land to retrieve the most deadliest bio-weapon in the world. What could that be you ask? Well it's Deadpool's zombie head that is still hungry for a super character’s flesh. Of course what is better than one Merc with a Mouth? Why two of course and everyone is after them. From Hydra Operatives, dinosaurs, cavemen-even zombie cavemen-are after our newly minted plucky duo as Deadpool attempts to take the head back to where it belongs. Will he make the journey to get rid of the zombie Deadpool head or will it be taken and bring about the zombie plague on the world as they know it? You'll have to pick this one up tomorrow to find out.

Michael Jackson tribute comic

Omnicomic was shocked by the death of Michael Jackson just like everyone else. Regardless of what your opinion of him and some of his actions was, Jackson was an icon that pretty much defined the 80s. Of course, with death comes reverence, and now it seems that people are crawling all over themselves to pay respects to a man that most of the world had written off as insane not even one year ago. One of these tributes comes from Bluewater Productions in the form a tribute comic called Tribute: Michael Jackson, King of Pop. The book traces Jackson's rise to fame as a musical prodigy with his start in the Jackson 5 all the way up to his untimely death on June 25. Bluewater Productions president Darren G. Davis thinks Jackson's influence is worthy of a tribute comic. “Michael Jackson’s music served as the soundtrack to countless lives…including mine,” said Davis, “His influence on our culture has been profound. This is a celebration of his life and what he meant to a legion of fans. Although the book won’t shy away from some of his personal troubles, we try to tell a balanced story that shows Jackson as a musical genius, an unparalleled superstar and as a complex person.” The book features a wrap-around cover and foreword by Giuseppe Mazzola, of "The Official Michael Jackson Fan Club" fame. Wey-Yuih Loh wrote the story with Giovanni Timpano doing the illustrations. Throw in a little Vinnie Tartamella for an alternative cover and you've got the makings of a pretty decent tribute. I really have no idea as to how in-depth the comic will really be as far as his life goes. I mean, will the last few panels have Jackson doctor shopping and overdosing on prescription pills? Not to be callous or anything, but there's a fine line between artistic expression and sad truth. I'm sure that some fans will be really upset with the comic, but you've got to think that a biography will be coming out at some point in the near future. You can preorder the comic at TFAW prior to an October 28, 2009 release date. Check out the alternative cover below. Michael Jackson tribute comic

Stan Lee in Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2

C.B. Cebulski is a writer and editor at Marvel Comics. He's also one of Marvel's talent evaluators, which means he's kind of a big deal and in the know about things. Being at Marvel gives him tons of insight into various projects both in process and in planning. Projects like Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2 for example. And the game's possible inclusion of Stan Lee as a playable character. On Cebulski's Twitter, he posted the following tweet: "Stan Lee is gonna be an unlocakble, playable character in Marvel: Ultimate Alliance 2?! That'd be awesome." Wow. Now, I'm not aware that he's working on the game in any capacity. Not even as a creative consultant or anything. If word spread throughout the halls of Marvel that Stan Lee would be a playable character in the followup to a hugely successful video game I think he would hear something about it. Now of course this is only a rumor, and it's wholly possible that Cebulski was just commenting that it would be cool for Stan Lee to have such a role. But what if he's right? What powers would Stan Lee have? Besides the power of awesomeness, I'm guessing he would be similar to Spider-Man in terms of fighting style. It was Spider-Man afterall that essentially cemented Stan Lee as an industry icon. I'll admit that it would be cool to see him beat enemies with sharp wit or something like that, but I think I'd rather see him shoot webs. Or maybe he can have the powers of some of his other creations as well. Like he can rage out like the Hulk while wielding Thor's hammer and shooting out webs. Chock this up to rumor for the time being, but get excited at the possibility that it's not.

Burn Notice at Comic Con

San Diego Comic Con is more than just comics. Comics, anime, movies and television shows are all the rage as studios capitalize on the massive throngs of fans. And while this year's programming hasn't officially announced some individual studios are releasing their panel schedules. Among the Lost, Chuck and Heroes panels will be another one with an Omnicomic favorite in Bruce Campbell. Yes kids, according to the Mikkel Bondesen's Twitter Campbell will be at Comic Con at the Burn Notice panel. Bondesen is one of the show's executive producers and is also a big fan of Twitter. Being in a position as such, he's definitely in the know when it comes to the show. Below are two tweets regarding the Burn Notice panel. "Just got word that we will be doing a panel at ComiCon with Bruce Campbell July 23rd for #burn notice...YES! Awesomeness..." "don't know where the details will be. But it looks like it's on the 23rd at 2:30pm. Meet and greet as well." I think "awesome" is a great descriptor. It appears that the panel will feature Bruce Campbell as well as all the writers. Of course, the time has yet to be officially confirmed, but I'd say that Bondesen's tweet about the panel being on July 23 at 2:30 PM would be a pretty good indicator. In case you're wondering why you should care about the panel aside from Campbell, Burn Notice references the order to disavow and wipe off the grid any agents of an intelligence agency after being deemed unreliable. Campbell portrays a semi-retired operative who also happens to be a NAVY Seal that sleeps with older women for money. The show has just entered it's third season and is chugging along on USA network. Anything with Campbell in it has to garner some attention though, so be sure to start tuning in.

Awakening Volume One trailer

I'm still getting on board with the whole "trailer for a comic book thing." I mean, it doesn't seem that intuitive that static images would blend together for a movie trailer, but more and more creators are going that route to get the word out about their books. The latest of such creators are Nick Tapalansky, Alex Eckman-Long and Thomas Mauer of Awakening Volume One fame. The trailer is chock full of eerie sounds, chilling images and the requisite horror heartbeat set against an almost Silent Hill-ish musical backdrop. Yeah, it's an assault on the senses for sure. If you haven't checked out the series or heard anything about it, well, then this video should get you up to speed. If you like what you see (and why wouldn't you honestly), the book is available for preorder from Amazon with a rumored July 29 ship date. The book has been printed and has already sold out in its convention debut at Wizard World Philly, but Tapalansky assured Omnicomic that there will be copies made available at San Diego Comic Con. So if you're headed to the con you can pick up the book a few days earlier than your comic friend counterparts. Unless of course they're going with you, which means then its just a race to the Awakening table to see who can actually own it "first." Check out the trailer below.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Defense with the BoomStick


Man I am tired as no other...I just don’t know what has got me so tired. Sorry folks out there, you might be able to tell today have been a long day and long week before that. But on with the show. Not much in the way of news this past week except for a bit of chatter here and there with other outposts checking in on each other to see if they are still there. Other than that not much going over the airwaves and no new word about that mystery guy named Tedd. I almost forget I did hear about a stronghold in Orange County of California that is holding out, plus there is a large compound in Los Angeles that is doing quite well for being in the middle of a large urban area. Beyond that no more news so onto the tip of the week.

Today I am going to go over a few things that can help strengthen the overall defense of your stronghold or compound you have decided to call home. If you do have a chain link fence that encircles your place then a way to strength it is to hook up a few batteries to it. This way it becomes an electric fence that might not shock a zombie or make then combust, but the noise will alert you to zombies on the fence and help you dispatch them faster than normal. If you have a generator to spare you can hook this up and get more juice out of it and cause zombies to catch on fire, effectively killing them. Another method you can use if you have the available equipment is to use large shipping containers to make a wall. To ensure that there is no gaps weld them together (once again if you have the equipment to do so); that way it makes a wall that cannot be push or moved apart. If you have a crane to move theses into position you can also stand some up and make guard towers out of them to see any zombies in your surrounding area, while also keeping an eye out for bandits.

I haven't seen many bandit groups the past few months or heard over the airwaves that strongholds are being attacked, but you never know so keep an eye out for them. When setting the shipping containers up as your wall make sure to put posts behind them with concrete bases to help reinforce the wall, just in case bandits try and push your wall with vehicles. That is it for today. Next week, I'll go over new things to help secure your position. Until next week this is Brandon signing off.

Latest Scarlett poster

Now that the latest incarnation of my childhood has been released as a movie in Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen it's time to look ahead to the next one. That would be G.I. Joe: Rise of Cobra (apparently there's a memo that all these movies must feature the rise or revenge of evil). The movie is due out in six weeks, but to keep you occupied until then is the above poster from Coming Soon. The poster depicts Rachel Nichols as Scarlett. Get excited kids.

Batman: Arkham Asylum achievements

For the Xbox 360 inclined out there, Batman: Arkham Asylum hopes to make up for the lack of Joker as a playable character with achievements. You know, those various actions that give you points for doing them in conjunction with a noise that is like crack? Ahead of the game's rumored August 25 release, Xbox 360 Achievements has released the full list of achievements for the game. The list includes about one-third of the achievements focused on the story mode, another one-third focused on challenges and and the last one-third are secret. A good portion of the challenge-based achievements mention the Riddler, so my guess is that there will be something of a puzzle-solving aspect to the game in addition ot the free-flowing combat. Although, an early favorite for me is Rope-A-Dope-A-Dope, which you unlock by stringing up one henchman and dropping him to surprise a second. This means that you'll have to do more than just hit X,X,Y in combo fashion (like actually using the utility belt) to beat the game, which is great. This is by no means a definitive list, but Xbox 360 Achievements has a pretty good track record with pre-release achievements matching up with actual release achievements. So I'm inclined to take their word on this one. Batman: Arkham Asylum achievements

Marvel decade variants

Not sure if you've heard or not but Marvel is rapidly approaching its 70th anniversary. Yep. 70 years of superheroes, mutants, lawsuits and even anti-comic book legislation and hearings. For them to remain a titan in the industry is nothing short of amazing. The company has been in a festive, celebratory mode all year, and the latest efforts in celebration are special edition variant covers. Not just any variant covers, but Decade variant covers. Each one depicts various decades throughout history in general, with the title characters in various states of joviality, intensity, or whatever -ity was prevalent at the time. Above is a New Mutants #3 variant, while after the jump are you can check out Deadpool #12 and Mighty Avengers #26 variants. The Deadpool one is especially flowery. All three issues hit stores July 15 for $2.99.

Interview - Michael Dolce (The Descendant)

Michael Dolce is a writing star on the rise. His book The Sire was released to critical acclaim, and he's had a stint with Zenescope and Grimm Fairy Tales. His latest work is with Image Comics and is called The Descendant, set to debut this July.

Omnicomic: Donald Wright seems to compare favorably with Clark Kent, and once he transforms he has the obvious comparison with Superman. Is that what you were going for in this book? Was Kent/Superman the inspiration for Wright/Sire?

Michael Dolce: Actually the only reference to Superman I had was that JJ is way smarter than Lois Lane. It takes her within the first issue to realize this guy is the exact same dude that works for her. The rest I really just approached with the notion that people would like to THINK they’d want super powers but if they had 'em it would be more of a burden than anything else. We all wouldn’t want to be Superman.


Omnicomic: The Descendant is based on Chiquita bananas; more specifically, the financial implications of them. Is it necessary in your minds that the book be relatable to today’s society?

Dolce: I think it’s got to be relatable in the sense that its got to be believable first off. You have to buy into the catalysts for the plot. In this case greed, which is pretty basic, is the catalyst for our villain. Acceptance meanwhile is the driving force behind our protagonist.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Hank McCoy (Before the Fur)

The King of Pop is dead. I don’t have much else to say today. I can’t think of a comic book that Michael Jackson was in per se (although, inevitably, it’s out there somewhere). Still, Jackson inspired music and science-fiction lovers alike for years. I still remember being a kid, going to Epcot Center and seeing Captain EO. It had this George Lucas- magical but lifelike quality to it. It captured the imagination. You can say what you will about the man, and ultimately, we may never know how much of what is said about him is true or not. At the very least, I will say this: he had a kind of childlike fascination with the unknown and adventure, that kind of stuff. And it drew us in. And the whole world watched him to see what he’d do next. From zombies to Beat it, there’s always going to be something about his music that people of the last two generations will find nostalgic. You’ll remember who you were, where you were and the way life was when you hear it. Rest in Piece. That’s all I’ve got.

Image going Underground

Jeff Parker and Steve Lieber are going underground for Image Comics in a new four-issue series called...Underground. The story is about Park Ranger Wesley Fischer is on a mission to stop the Stillwater Cave from turning into a tourist trap. Public opinion is not on her side however. Wesley is forced to investigate when blasting begins, and what happens afterwards is a deadly chase through the Kentucky mountains. “UNDERGROUND is a fast, tough story about people who have been pushed into tight corners — both ethical and literal,” Parker said. “None of them knew they were about to be caught up in a life or death struggle, it’s a situation that has spiraled out of control. I’ve known Steve Lieber for years and he’s the best at this. No one can put the real world on the comics page the way he does. He draws real people and puts them in real danger.” The first book will hit stores September 23 for $3.50. Full press release after the jump. PRESS RELEASE - JEFF PARKER AND STEVE LIEBER GO UNDERGROUND WITH IMAGE COMICS THIS SEPTEMBER! The artist of WHITEOUT and writer of AGENTS OF ATLAS team up for the four issue mini-series, UNDERGROUND! 25 June 2009 (Berkeley, CA) - As Warner Brothers gears up to release WHITEOUT, its Eisner-winning artist Steve Lieber returns to the adventure genre with a new thriller from Image Comics, pairing with acclaimed AGENTS OF ATLAS and EXILES writer Jeff Parker on the September shipping UNDERGROUND! “UNDERGROUND is a fast, tough story about people who have been pushed into tight corners — both ethical and literal,” Parker said. “None of them knew they were about to be caught up in a life or death struggle, it’s a situation that has spiraled out of control. I’ve known Steve Lieber for years and he’s the best at this. No one can put the real world on the comics page the way he does. He draws real people and puts them in real danger.” In UNDERGROUND, Park Ranger and avid caver Wesley Fischer is on a one-woman mission to stop Stillwater Cave from being turned into a tourist trap, but public opinion is not on her side. When locals begin blasting in the cave, Wes and a fellow ranger investigate – and a confrontation spirals into a deadly chase deep under the Kentucky mountains! Lieber added, “We knew Image was the right publisher for UNDERGROUND as we like how they’ve expanded the comics audience with titles like THE WALKING DEAD and now VIKING. We want to continue pushing the reading public with UNDERGROUND.” UNDERGROUND #1 (JUL090341), a 32-page full color comic book for $3.50, will be in stores September 23rd, 2009. For more information, please see http://www.undergroundthecomic.com. Image Comics is a comics and graphic novels publisher formed in 1992 by a collective of best-selling artists. Since that time, Image has gone on to become one of the largest comics publishers in the United States. There are currently five partners in Image Comics (Robert Kirkman, Erik Larsen, Todd McFarlane, Marc Silvestri, and Jim Valentino), and Image is currently divided into four major houses (Todd McFarlane Productions, Top Cow Productions, Shadowline, and Image Central). Image comics and graphic novels cover nearly every genre, sub-genre, and style imaginable, offering science fiction, romance, horror, crime fiction, historical fiction, humor, and more by the finest artists and writers working in the medium today. Visit www.imagecomics.com.

Review - Predator #1

I know what you are thinking, why am I doing a review of a movie that came out in the 1980s? Well I'm not reviewing that masterpiece of cinema. No, today my faithful Omnicomic readers I am reviewing the new comic series from Dark Horse Comics Predator #1. First a little backstory for those of you unfamiliar with what the Predator is. Predator is an alien species who are fierce warriors and thrive on the feeling of hunting and being in combat. They fly throughout the universe finding wars and interjecting themselves into the middle to kill the most skilled warriors and collect trophies. Many Predators have come to earth to take part in the conflicts this world has seen with their advanced technology such as being able to go invisible, a helmet that can see in every different spectrum and even a shoulder mounted rocket launcher. They are the ultimate hunter hence their name Predator, because once they start coming after you, you better run. This new take on the Predator starts anew in a war-torn third world country that is in the middle of a huge civil war. When countries are at war it means people can profit, and in this case a private security company is providing protection for a group that is in the middle buying rights to certain oil fields and basically buying up whatever they can while the war ravages the country. In the middle of all this is a war between two rival tribes of Predators, which decided to duke it out in on Earth amidst this civil war. They will stop at no ends to destroy each other and whoever gets in their way as well. Now after reading this first issue I thoroughly enjoyed the direction that Dark Horse is taking the Predator series. They had the right amount of balance to get the story going and just hint at the awesome power the Predators possess. Most of the issue you see just the aftermath of the destruction the Predators leave in their wake (barely seeing them in action) which I am sure we'll see in the coming issues. If you are a fan then you will enjoy this comic and the ones to follow so go pick this one up and be on the lookout for the next issue.

Review - Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen is the latest explosion-laced film from Michael Bay. Hoping to capitalize on the success of the first film, Transformers, Bay has worked in just about everything from the original. Familiar characters, music and storylines have all returned, but do they work? Before I get into the review let me say this. I liked this movie. With a caveat. It wasn’t as good as the first one. See, the first one had a few things going for it. First, there were no expectations. Sure it was a film about Transformers, but no one really knew what to expect other than tons of bombast and giant robot battles. Second, Steven Spielberg. You could tell that in Transformers Spielberg did lots to sort of rein in Bay and his style. In the sequel, not so much. Spielberg still had his say but it definitely seems like this time around Bay did much more of the heavy lifting as far as the production went. Now, onto the good stuff. Not a spoiler free review, so keep that in mind. There was something missing from Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. The first film had a special sort of magic that really made it a pleasantly surprising film that worked on multiple levels. This one suffered from some basic moviemaking flaws. For one it was way too long. It clocks in at about 2 ½ hours, which is similar to that of the first one, but this one felt much longer. There were at least 30 minutes of footage that probably would have been better served as deleted scenes on the DVD. These scenes effectively made the movie feel a little bloated and honestly drag on at times. For instance, towards the end when they are seeking the Matrix to beat the Decepticons to it, the entire detective-search sequence was about 5 scenes too long. Just too much time was spent going from point A to point B to point C. With the length was the issue of pacing. Overall, the film felt really uneven. Some scenes seemed to serve a purpose while others were just filler (the entire scene with Sam’s parents moving him into college for example). This is going to happen with a Bay film because of the fight sequences but I couldn’t help but think that the movie lacked something. It was this constant buildup with no real sense of urgent need to resolve anything, and the final fight with the Fallen was quite anti-climatic. Sam and Mikaela. I get the need to show a dichotomy between choices. And in Sam’s case, the choice between declaring his love for Mikaela and in becoming a man is treated wholly separate. Some would argue that the two are intricately intertwined but to each their own. There wasn’t even much chemistry between the two of them on screen, which didn’t do much to convince you that they really loved each other. Just about every scene they were in together there was someone else in between them. That could have been to symbolically show the obstacles that Sam faces, but I doubt there was that much foresight into the scenes. There were way too many Transformers. The first film had about five on each side, which was a good amount of Transformers and really let you get to know the characters. This time around there was about 20 Transformers with the balance clearly tipped in the favor of the Decepticons. Of course this leads to great battles, and the final all-out war in Egypt at the end takes up about 45 minutes of the movie (maybe not that much but it seemed like that). The best battle however is the one halfway through the film. Optimus Prime pretty much takes on three Decepticons at once and hands it to all of them, essentially cementing him as a genuine badass. Bumblebee later proves a similar status when he defends Sam and his parents from two Decepticons. I won’t get too much into the plot because it’s pretty straightforward. The Decepticons want to destroy the sun to gain more power to create more Decepticons. Simple enough. It was nice to see more Megatron and Starscream banter in the film…that was really missing from the first movie. But Ratchet and Ironhide got about 5 minutes combined of screen time. They were replaced by Arcee and the really annoying (and controversially stereotypical) twins. Seeing the Constructicons come together and form Devastator gave me goosebumps, and watching him in action was pretty sweet (although his demise was drastically untimely). The film was good overall, but not as good as the first one. There were simply too many expectations for Bay to live up to and I don’t think he hit them all. What we’re left with as viewers is a decent follow-up to one of 2007’s unexpected hits. The movie will be great to watch on Blu-ray when it hits the medium for the special effects alone, which actually look better than they did in the first movie. A glut of Transformers kind of hurt the movie and really took away screen time from some of the humans (Josh Duhamel and Tyrese Gibson mainly). Megan Fox was looking incredible and Shia LaBeouf is clearly comfortable with his role, so that all works. I just felt like the movie was missing a little something. Kind of like a good recipe that is missing that one spice to make it great. John Turturro reprised his role really well, which was nice to see. The whole Sam-Mikaela thing sort of overshadowed the Autobot-Decepticon war, which was kind of disappointing. A few questions about the film arise, like since when did Transformers become capable of copying humans (I know there are Pretenders in the Transformers universe but Alice seems to stretch that concept a little too far)? Why does Devastator have balls? In two years the shard never once fell out of his hoodie? The Transformers are supposed to be kept secret, but how did they cover up Carson City fro the first movie? These questions don't kill the movie, but having them answered certainly would've helped. In the end, it is what it is. A movie about giant robots fighting for survival amidst explosions, loud noises and dripping sex appeal. I will say this: Bay knows how to make a summer movie. This film is a symphony (or a cacophony if you view it that way) of explosions, fighting, T&A and a little bit of insecurity thrown in for good measure. It is everything you could POSSIBLY want from a summer blockbuster and then some. An all-out assault on the senses that will keep your ears ringing a week after seeing the film. And you know what? That's fine with me. The critics be damned, this was a good movie. I should clarify that this film is not good in the sense it's got Oscar written all over it, but good in that I want to see hot women and explosions while forgetting the outside world for a second. Or in this case, 8,820 seconds. When you look at it that way, it doesn't seem that long. Overall score: 70 out of 100

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Transformers Revenge of the Fallen: Megatron

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen is released! To get you prepped for the film and help you identify which characters are in the movie not named Optimus Prime, Brandon and Tedd will be bringing you Autobot and Decepticon profiles each week up to the film's release. Expect one Autobot and one Decepticon each week. And the good thing about these profiles is that they will be Baysplosion free. Original Debut: Transformers #1 (1984), Marvel Comics Alternate Mode: The nightmare toy design of every gun-control activist, Megatron originally transformed into a Walther P38 pistol. Megatron’s size in this form appears somewhat variable- sometimes he’s so small that a human being can pick him up, other times he’s a Transformer sized-handgun. Either way, the blast from Megatron’s arm cannon is focused into the barrel of the gun, and delivers a truly devastating surge of energy to anything in its way. Megatron is war personified. A favorite anecdote of mine, the commentary on the Generation 1 DVD set describes Megatron as “Darth Vader, if Darth Vader could turn into his own lightsaber and have someone else wield him in that form to destroy his enemies.” Comparison: Michael Bay depicts Megatron as transforming into an alien like cybertronian jet. Bay has stated that in this mode, the film-version of Megatron can actually travel across vast interstellar distances. All in all, the movie-version of the baddest Decepticon of them all bares striking similarities with his original incarnation- but the alien features really shine through. Background: Maybe one of the most beloved villains of all time, Megatron breaks the long-standing tradition of 80s Saturday morning cartoon villains being inept idiots. Instead, Megatron is a war-mongering, brutal tyrant who possesses a Sun-Tzu like insight on war and deception. Megatron possesses a sense of fair-play and honor, in at least as much as he rarely lies outrightly. The leader of the Decepticon cause, he possesses a fierce love and pride for Cybertron and the Cybertronian race. Megatron just happens to believe that the Transformers are better off actively working to dominate the universe than waiting around to be forced into slavery themselves. Although a megalomaniac, Megatron sort of ‘loves his people’ then. In a weird way, he’s kind of like Prime. Megatron is obsessed with defeating and killing Prime, and recognizes him alone among the Autobot ranks as an equal worthy of consideration. Megatron knows Prime well and often has intense insight into his rival’s methods and goals. Famous Quote: “Everything is Fodder” Check out the other profiles from the Autobots and Decpticons featured in Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. And be sure to check out the film in theaters and IMAX June 24. Arcee Bumblebee Demolishor Devastator Ironhide Jetfire Optimus Prime Ravage Sideswipe Scorponok Soundwave Starscream

Transformers Revenge of the Fallen: Optimus Prime

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen is released! To get you prepped for the film and help you identify which characters are in the movie not named Optimus Prime, Brandon and Tedd will be bringing you Autobot and Decepticon profiles each week up to the film's release. Expect one Autobot and one Decepticon each week. And the good thing about these profiles is that they will be Baysplosion free. Name: Optimus Prime Original Debut: Optimus Prime has been a part of the Transformer Universe since the beginning with the 1984 cartoon and pretty much every incarnation of them in comic book form. Transformed Vehicle: Freightliner Cab-over-engine is the mode that he has always disguised as in the cartoon and the comics. The flames that were on the side of the truck in the first Michael Bay Transformer movie were not part of his original design but added in for the movie. General Description: Optimus Prime is the leader of the Autobots and one of the most well-known one of all the Transformers. Originally, on Cybertron he was only a civilian, but was picked by the Matrix of Leadership to be the Autobots leader, a burden that weighs very heavily on him. He is overly compassionate and willing to sacrifice himself to save others and feels the death of any sentient being in his own spark. His courage, charisma and decisive leadership are what help turn the tide for the Autobots in the civil war that tore their planet apart. Optimus Prime is a force to behold on the battlefield as well and is one of the largest Autobots in size and strength. For weapons he uses his ion blaster and has an energon-axe to deal out Autobot justice to the dastardly Deceptions. He doesn’t pack the raw firepower of his weapon specialist Ironhide, but Optimus Prime makes it up with sheer guts and determination. His only weakness is his also greatest strength, and that is his compassion that all beings have the right to live and to improve the world around him. Qoutes: "Freedom is the right of all sentient beings." "No sacrifice is too great in the service of freedom." Check out the other profiles from the Autobots and Decpticons featured in Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. And be sure to check out the film in theaters and IMAX June 24. Arcee Bumblebee Demolishor Devastator Ironhide Jetfire Megatron Ravage Sideswipe Scorponok Soundwave Starscream

Transformers Revenge of the Fallen: Starscream

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen is released! To get you prepped for the film and help you identify which characters are in the movie not named Optimus Prime, Brandon and Tedd will be bringing you Autobot and Decepticon profiles each week up to the film's release. Expect one Autobot and one Decepticon each week. And the good thing about these profiles is that they will be Baysplosion free. Origin: The Transformers #1 Transformed mode: Pretty much name any badass jet and chances are Starscream has transformed into said jet at one point or another. Some of the "snazzier" jets have been a Cybertronian Jet, F-15 Eagle, Cobra Night Raven and F-22 Raptor. In both films, Starscream transforms into the latter-a a Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor jet that drips with Michael Bay military passion- which is the successor to the F-15 Eagle (his original form). Transforming into any one of these jets allows Starscream to be Decepticon Air Commander and lead the other Decepticon Seeker Jets (Thundercracker, Skywarp, Thrust, Ramjet, Dirge and later Sunstorm). Abilities: Starscream is a badass. And that's not an understatement. He can reach speeds up to Mach 2.8 (which would destroy most jet engines) and sub-orbital altitudes of 52 miles. In comparison, the real jet has a top speed of Mach 2.5 and 12.3 mile altitude ceiling. Mounted on his arm are a series of launchers that dispense pain as either cluster bombs or a Null Ray. The Null Ray is the sexier of the two, allowing Starscream to disrupt the flow of electricity in any circuitry it hits. Essentially, it emits an electromagnetic pulse. Starscream is a perfect storm of ambition and spinelessness. See, he makes it readily apparent that he will gladly take the thrown from Megatron as ruler of the Decepticons, but he's excessively cautious to play his hand unless he knows that outcome in advance. This has lead to countless attempted coups on his part to overthrow Megatron that have blown up in his face. He has ruled the Decepticons from time to time and is widely considered to be Megatron's right-hand man...er, Decepticon. Starscream is smarter than your average Decepticon, and that intelligence is part of his superiority complex. He is constantly at odds with Megatron for what he perceives to be antiquated fighting tactics. But when he needs to be Starscream can be incredibly cold and calculating meticulously planning out a strategy that will benefit him. His manipulative scheming is often grossly underestimated, leading him to countless victories (despite most of them being only temporary). His battle tactics clearly play to his advantage as he favors quick and repetitive strikes (as opposed to the brutish, dragged-out fight that Megatron prefers). In a sense, he and Megatron are the perfect odd couple, and were they not gigantic villainous robots hellbent on world domination we'd probably see them in a sitcom on NBC Thursday nights. Megatron has a grudging respect for Starscream, and Starscream stays close to Megatron seeking an opportunity to step into his role and take the power. The two of them constantly bicker and there is never a shortage of tension and anger between the two. Despite somewhat awkward moments, the two of them together form a tremendously dangerous and formidable tandem. Quote: "Conquest is made of the ashes of one's enemies." Check out the other profiles from the Autobots and Decpticons featured in Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. And be sure to check out the film in theaters and IMAX June 24. Arcee Bumblebee Demolishor Devastator Ironhide Jetfire Megatron Optimus Prime Ravage Sideswipe Scorponok Soundwave

Review: Freddy vs Jason vs. Ash: The Nightmare Warrior #1

Some people think that Freddy vs. Jason vs. Ash comic could've only have happened once in our lifetime. Well if that is what you thought then you're wrong. Today I'm bringing to you my review of Freddy vs. Jason vs. Ash The Nightmare Warriors #1. Brought to you by those fine folks over at Dynamite Entertainment, this new installment continues six months after the end of the first series. I remember reading the first one and marveled at how well they captured the action that Freddy and Jason bring to the picture with lots of bloody action. Of course, you can't forget Ash and on top of being bloody and death packed, it was full of classic humor that kept you laughing. I thought the first series was bloody and compelling storytelling, but they definitely took it up a notch with this first issue of the second go-round. Minor spoilers for those of you that haven't read the first series. This one starts off six months after the end of the original Freddy vs. Jason vs. Ash. Jason is at the bottom of Camp Crystal Lake, still trapped by Ash’s car and a thick layer of Ice. Ash has moved on from his life of being the chosen one and is trying to live normally with the girl that was saved from Jason and Freddy. Of course you know that the simple life just doesn’t last for Ash, as Jason is unleashed from the ice and dispatches a government team with vicious slashing and bloody gouges. Jason is sent on a mission to track down the Chosen One and to kill him at the behest of his mother, or who Jason thinks is his mother, but is really Freddy. After reading this first issue I cannot wait for the next one to come out, because this storyline is going to rock even more then the last one. I could tell you more about this issue, but don’t want to ruin the surprise when you pick this one up yourself and enjoy it. Trust me: if you're a fan of any of the three title characters then you will enjoy this series (or the first series for that matter) as they keep them true to their origins.

Silverline working for the kids

Normally a lava floor and transgalactic towel would be cause for concern. Not in the case of Silverline Books however, as those are merely the two newest kids' comics from the imprint. Silverline Publisher Jim Valentino is clearly excited about the possibilities. "I was immediately impressed with the way THE LAVA IS A FLOOR and TIMOTHY & THE TRANSGALACTIC TOWEL both appeal to a child’s sense of humor, while the vivid imagery captures the imaginations of new and reluctant readers alike, " Silverline Publisher Jim Valentino said. “Both books give unique twists on the everyday experiences of children, making them enjoyable for both kids and their parents.” The Lava is a Floor is about a brother and sister troubled by boredom. Nothing out of the ordinary until you find out that the siblings are actually monsters that live in the crater of a volcano. Their wild imagination conjures up humans as excitement. The book hits stores in hardcover for $12.99 August 5. Timothy and the Transgalactic Towel features Timothy and a seemingly inanimate object: a beach towel. This is no ordinary towel however, as it has the power to transport Timothy into other worlds and times. You can check out the towel adventures August 26 for $16.99. Full press release and The Lava is a Floor cover below. SILVERLINE BOOKS DEBUTS TWO NEW CHILDREN’S GRAPHIC NOVELS, THE LAVA IS A FLOOR AND TIMOTHY & THE TRANSGALACTIC TOWEL, THIS AUGUST! Silverline Books expands line of children’s graphic novels with THE LAVA IS A FLOOR and TIMOTHY & THE TRANSGALACTIC TOWEL! 22 June 2009 (Berkeley, CA) – This August Silverline Books, the children’s graphic novel imprint from Image Comics, debuts two all-new titles showcasing the human side of two very fantastic situations, THE LAVA IS A FLOOR by writer Justin Shady with artist Jeremy R. Scott and TIMOTHY & THE TRANSGALACTIC TOWEL by writer Michael Bullock with artist Michael Metcalf! "I was immediately impressed with the way THE LAVA IS A FLOOR and TIMOTHY & THE TRANSGALACTIC TOWEL both appeal to a child’s sense of humor, while the vivid imagery captures the imaginations of new and reluctant readers alike, " Silverline Publisher Jim Valentino said. “Both books give unique twists on the everyday experiences of children, making them enjoyable for both kids and their parents.” Silverline Books continues its tradition of bridging the gap between comics and children’s story books for a new generation of fans with THE LAVA IS A FLOOR and TIMOTHY AND THE TRANSGALACTIC TOWEL. THE LAVA IS A FLOOR is the story of a brother and sister troubled by a typical childhood dillema; they’re bored. Although these are not your typical sibling duo--they’re monsters living in the crater of a volcano! Using their imaginations they pretend to be the strangest creatures they can think of: humans! In TIMOTHY AND THE TRANSGALACTIC TOWEL, a young boy named Timothy soon finds out that with a seemingly normal beach towel he can transport himself to other worlds and times, including into the midst of an inter-galactic war! THE LAVA IS A FLOOR (JUN090325), a 32-page full color hard cover book for $12.99, will be in stores August 5, 2009. TIMOTHY AND THE TRANSGALACTIC TOWEL (JUN090327), a 112-page full color book $16.99, will be in stores August 26, 2009. For more information please see http://www.silverlinebooks.com. Image Comics is a comics and graphic novels publisher formed in 1992 by a collective of best-selling artists. Since that time, Image has gone on to become one of the largest comics publishers in the United States. There are currently five partners in Image Comics (Robert Kirkman, Erik Larsen, Todd McFarlane, Marc Silvestri, and Jim Valentino), and Image is currently divided into four major houses (Todd McFarlane Productions, Top Cow Productions, Shadowline, and Image Central). Image comics and graphic novels cover nearly every genre, sub-genre, and style imaginable, offering science fiction, romance, horror, crime fiction, historical fiction, humor, and more by the finest artists and writers working in the medium today. Visit www.imagecomics.com.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Review: Swordsmith Assassin #1

I love a good samurai story. Some people may think they're played out, but give me a well-written lonesome samurai story and I'm all set. Boom! Studios are big fans of samurai tales as well, and their latest work, Swordsmith Assassin, has the makings of something really awesome. I previewed the book last week, but yesterday Boom! Studios sent me a hot-off-the-presses copy of the book. After giving it a read through, I think the best way to describe it is intriguing. Read on for an advanced review, keeping in mind that there are some spoilers. The series focuses on Toshiro Ono, a renowned swordsmaker who had intense values impressed upon him by his honorable father. After his father's passing however, Ono realizes that his metallurgical prowess can be put to use in supporting his wife and daughter. It's a story that we've seen time after time, but that doesn't make it any less impactful. Sure, Ono benefited greatly from his skill by selling to the highest bidder, but it was this same practice that upset the balance in his life. Ono's wealth didn't come without it's perils; as a richer man, his household attracted individuals of the sordid variety. One of them happened upon his house during a robbery, and in the process of taking from Ono killed his wife and child. In a fit of rage Ono desperately tracks down the lowly thief responsible and learns that he sold a sword to the thief in question. He attacks the thief but is no match for his trained swordsmanship. It's only as a result of fate (and sake) that Ono wins the battle. Too weak to commit seppuku, Ono vows to seek out all the swords he ever crafted in an attempt to destroy them all. This entire story is told as a flashback, as the issue opens up with Ono in West Prussia, 1870, surrounded by soldiers. The man he is visiting at this encampment happens to have a sword of his, and Ono tells the man the above story to encourage him to return the crafted sword to Ono for destruction. The writing by Andrew Cosby and Michael Alan Nelson is excellent and really moves the story along, while at the same time keeping a samurai spirit. I think I have to give the creative nod to artist Ayhan Hayrula though as the reason for this book's awesomeness. No offense whatsoever to writers Costby and Nelson. It's just that there's a certain gritty quality about Hayrula's work that adds a sort of ancient lens to the book. The colors are sort of washed out and dim, creating a sense of depression almost. The book doesn't hit until August, and when it does I highly recommend picking it up. Fans of samurai stories will definitely appreciate this series. The first ten pages of the first issue are below, so check them out and be sure to add Swordsmith Assassin #1 to your future list.

Preview: Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 8 #26

Buffy: The Vampire Slayer may no longer be an ongoing TV series, but that shouldn't stop Dark Horse from maintaining it as an ongoing comic book. The latest series is Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 8, and that series is all the way up to number 26. If you haven't been reading the series, what do you need to know to get yourself up to speed? Well, Team Buffy has taken to the shadows in a Slayers world. Vampires are all the rage and Scotland's newest Slayer headquarters has come under attack. Not only that, but Joss Whedon has thrown in yaks. Yep. Yaks. Jane Espenson writes the story with Georges Jeanty with Whedon on the executive producer tip. You can preorder the book from TFAW at the link below (its due in July), and check out some interiors after the jump. Preview: Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 8 #26

Transformers with Defiance cover at Best Buy

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen is due in theaters tomorrow. Chances are you've seen the first film, and more than likely were at least satisfied that is was full of mechanical carnage and Bay-splosions. That might not be enough information going into the new film however, and IDW and Paramount have teamed up with Best Buy to bring to you a special prequel DVD with tons of extras tied to the new movie. The DVD has a special Defiance cover as well as a special edition digital comic from IDW. The comic is "Alliance," and is a prequel to the sequel to the original Transformers movie. You can learn more about what happened in Sector Seven through reading the four-issue mini-series, as well as what happened to the Autobots afterwards. The DVD features behind the scenes video from the video game of the same name, boasting interviews by Shia LaBeouf, Megan Fox and Peter Cullen discussing their voice recording experiences for the game. Throw in behind the scenes footage of Linkin Park during the making of their video "The Divide." Hit the link below to check out more info. Transformers with Defiance cover at Best Buy

Batman: Arkham Asylum demo in the works

Gamestop lists the game with an August 25 release date. Some of you would like to play it sooner. Fear not my friends, as Rocksteady Studios has casually announced that yes, there will be a demo of Batman: Arkham Asylum sometime later this summer. In response to a posting on the official forums for the game (the posting was actually a cry for the demo), Eidos has responded that there will be a demo, they just don't know when yet. "Friends, the answer is.... YES. It gets better: the demo will be available for 360, PS3 and PC. Zing! However, we haven't announced when yet. We're planning to announce the date and content of the demo in the first half of July - if you want to hear the news first keep it locked on to the Official Forums." Huzzah for uncertainty! At the very least this is satisfying news, and if we have to wait a week or two until an "early July announcement" that's fine by me. This game is shaping up to do the Batman name proud and looks like it will be a blast to play. You can check out the full posting after the jump. PLEASE! HELP! WILL THERE BE A DEMO FOR BATMAN: ARKHAM ASYLUM? Is there a God? What is the meaning of life? Is there life on another planet? Why does Noel Edmonds still have a career? Some of humankind's greatest minds have wrestled with these age old questions for centuries. But one mystery, above all others, burdens humanity's collective conciousness... Will there be a Batman: Arkham Asylum demo available for download and if yes what will it contain? Friends, the answer is.... YES. It gets better: the demo will be available for 360, PS3 and PC. Zing! However, we haven't announced when yet. We're planning to announce the date and content of the demo in the first half of July - if you want to hear the news first keep it locked on to the Official Forums. Batman: Arkham Asylum demo in the works

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

New Arrivals: June 24, 2009

Another day, another hit on the wallet. There's some good stuff hitting stores tomorrow, among them Berserker #1 and Fusion #2 (you can check out the Omnicomic review here). Both are great books, but I'm going to tip my hat towards another book. Two actually. The first is Gotham City: Sirens #1 by Paul Dini and Guillem March. The new series features the adventures (or rather, misadventures) of the Gotham beauties in the absence of Batman. Catwoman, Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn are tired of playing by the rules and have decided to take matters into their own hands for a good time. The second? The second is Praetorian by Jason M. Burns and Ramon Espinoza. Four Praetorian guards are charged with protecting mankind, a feat made slightly more bearable by their immortality in the wake of the crucifixion of Christ. The four of them must reunite to track down a serial killer fond of random murdering sprees. The graphic novel from Outlaw Entertainment is a scant $7.99 and worth checking out. Enjoy! New Arrivals: June 24, 2009