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Hench-Sized Comic Book Reviews – 11/29/14

Happy Turkey Week, Comic Book fans! Did everybody have a good Thanksgiving? And for those of you who don’t celebrate, did you have a good Thursday? I had a blast. I always get together with my family, and they’re a good group of people. I made banana bread, because it’s nice to contribute something, especially if it’s my favorite dish. I’m a grown up now, I should contribute.

Speaking of contributing, how about adding some more comic book reviews to the Internet? I know I can’t get enough! We’ve got new issues of Aquaman, Arkham Manor, Superior Iron Man and more, but the real standout this week is the (regrettably) final issue of Superior Foes of Spider-Man! Why couldn’t this series have done better or lasted longer? It was so much fun!

Shocker Rulz!

But all good things must come to an end. Or maybe it’s that we can’t have nice things? Surely one of the two.

Comic Reviews: Aquaman #36, Arkham Manor #2, Batman Eternal #34, Scarlet Spiders #1, Superior Foes of Spider-Man #17 and Superior Iron Man #2.

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The Venom and Sinister Six Films Are Now Official

No sooner do I stun the world with my List of Six of potential Spider-Man spin-off movies than Sony Pictures rushes out a hurried press release about their plans for Venom and Sinister Six movies. Coincidence? I think it’s safe to say ‘no’. Clearly someone at Sony reads my blog, and after I set the Internet on fire with my suggestions, that someone realized they had to catch up.

Because that’s totally how things happen.

Stay classy, guys

Anyway, I don’t like to comment on movies at this stage of the game, where the studios have only announced a writer and director, because how often does that actually go somewhere? How many DC superhero films have been announced over the past few years? Justice League Dark? Lobo? The Metal Men? Please. If any of those movies ever get made, I’ll eat my hat. But Sony have already got Amazing Spider-Man 2 coming down the pipe, and this press release announces Amazing Spider-Man 3, so maybe they really want to expand this franchise a lot more. It’s a wonderful idea, at least.

Here’s the full press release for those interested:

In a move to forge a new legacy in the story of Peter Parker on screen, Sony Pictures Entertainment, in association with Marvel Entertainment, is developing several new projects in the Spider-Man franchise, with Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci, Jeff Pinkner, Ed Solomon, and Drew Goddard to collaborate on overseeing the developing story over several films that will be produced by Avi Arad and Matt Tolmach, it was announced today by Doug Belgrad,president of Columbia Pictures, and Hannah Minghella, president of Production for the studio.

The five writers, along with the two producers and Marc Webb, have formed a franchise brain trust to expand the universe for the brand and to develop a continuous tone and thread throughout the films. Under the deals, the studio announced that Kurtzman & Orci & Pinkner are writing the screenplay for The Amazing Spider-Man 3, which the studio hopes Webb will return to direct; the film will go into production next fall for release on June 10, 2016. In addition, the team will build on the cinematic foundation laid by Webb, Arad, and Tolmach in the first two movies. They will expand the franchise as Kurtzman & Orci & Solomon will write the screenplay for Venom, which Kurtzman will direct; also, Goddard will write, with an eye to direct, The Sinister Six, focusing on the villains in the franchise. Hannah Minghella and Rachel O’Connor will oversee the development and production of these films for the studio.

In tapping these five writers, the studio and the producers are guiding the future of the franchise with the writer/producers who have each played significant and key roles in developing such highly successful franchises, films, and series as Star Trek, Transformers, “Alias,” “Fringe,” Men
in Black, Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, World War Z, “Lost,” Cloverfield, The Cabin in the Woods, and Marvel’s upcoming “Daredevil” series.

Commenting on the announcement, Belgrad said, “The Spider-Man film franchise is one of our studio’s greatest assets. We are thrilled with the creative team we have assembled to delve more deeply into the world that Marc, Avi and Matt have begun to explore in The Amazing Spider-Man and The Amazing Spider-Man 2. We believe that Marc, Alex, and Drew have uniquely exciting visions for how to expand the Spider-Man universe in each of these upcoming films.” Arad and Tolmach added, “This collaboration was born out of the great experience we and Marc had working with Alex, Bob, and Jeff on The Amazing Spider-Man 2. With more than fifty years’ wealth of stories in the comic books to draw upon for inspiration, the Spider-Man universe is truly boundless; in addition, the Spider-Man comics have the greatest rogues gallery of any series, and to have the chance to explore that on film is truly thrilling. Until now, we have approached each film as a separate, self-contained entity, but with this move, we have the opportunity to grow the franchise by looking to the future as we develop a continuous arc for the story. That is what Alex, Bob, Jeff, Ed, and Drew will do in this unprecedented collaboration, and we’re excited about the directions they are taking the character and the world.”

The most successful franchise in the history of Columbia Pictures, Spider-Man is embraced all over the world. The four Spider-Man films to date have taken in over $3.2 billion worldwide.

Spider-Man, Venom, The Sinister Six and other Spider-Man related characters are licensed to Sony by Marvel Entertainment.

The only name on there that I recognize is Drew Goddard, the guy who teamed up with Joss Whedon to make Cabin in the Woods. He’s also been put in charge of the Daredevil show on Netflix. The guy gets around, it seems, and probably has one of my dream jobs. How come everybody else always seems to have my dream job and not me?

Also, here’s a throwback to my earlier blogging: My chosen Sinister Six.

New Sinister Six Comic Based on Idea I Had Years Ago

Not that Marvel is actually using my idea, but I totally had an idea for a Sinister Six comic that explored the villains’ personal lives, you guys. I’m super serious here. If only I was a professional comic book writer, then maybe I’d get to write the series instead of Nick Spencer. Still, Marvel is going to publish the Superior Foes of Spider-Man as a series starring Boomerang, Shocker, Beetle, Speed Demon and Overdrive.

I love a good Shocker comic

I have always been a fan of Spider-Man’s street-level villains, especially the Shocker. I love exploring the idea that these villains are still real people who have real world problems. Not all super-villains are serial kills or mad scientists or want to take over the world. Some of them are working class men and women just trying to make some money through costumed villainy. That seems to be exactly what Nick Spencer has in mind.

“A big part of this book is definitely showing you the life behind the costume. A lot of the time we spend with them, the masks are off. That was actually my pitch here: that these guys, they’re actually a lot like Spider-Man, in the classic sense of the character,” said Spencer. “They don’t have the innate nobility or the desire to do the right thing, but they’re hard-luck stories, just like Peter Parker is/was. They’re not shooting for the stars so much as trying to survive. Every time they win in one part of their lives, they lose in another. So there’s something intrinsically cool and intriguing about that mirror aspect of the relationship.”

Of course, this means I have to cross this pitch off my list of ideas for when I finally get to sit down with Marvel’s editors. Curses!

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