Friday, December 30, 2011

Green Lantern and the Avengers

 

The Marvel Studios produced films have been pretty successful so far, so I am really looking forward to The Avengers, the film everything has been leading up to.   Joss Whedon is a great choice for director as he has had success writing for comics as well as handling ensemble pieces on film.  Sure there will be costume changes I would like to make and some other tweaks, but the fact that all these characters will on the big screen sharing an adventure together tells me I won't have too much to complain about.

I wish Green Lantern had fared better at the box office.  There was a lot to like about the film, but it was ultimately done in by a weak script, shoddy editing and a lackluster villain in Hector Hammond.  Warner Brothers has announced a sequel - but they said that for Superman Returns, too, so that may just be studio posturing.  I would like to see another attempt made utilizing lessons learned from the first outing, because I still think there is great potential in the franchise.


Thursday, December 29, 2011

Aquaman and The Sub Mariner (Part Two)



I wonder which of these two characters will be the first to get their own big screen film?  I've heard Namor bandied about as a potential future Marvel flick and Aquaman was famously brought to fictional cinema in Entourage as well as guest shots on Smallville and an unsuccessful TV pilot.  A big budget picture for an underwater superhero would face a lot of hurdles.  Underwater shoots are incredibly expensive and there's also the question of how to have the characters speak beneath the depths - easily handled in a comic but a lot tougher to make work in live action.  Both characters have famous looks that have their own challenges to pull off - making Aquaman's togs look cool and finding someone who can both act and look good in nothing but swim trunks and ankle wings.  It's a lot to overcome, but if done with care we could have a superhero movie unlike any other.  I'm betting we see one of them as a co-star in a team flick before a solo outing though.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Aquaman and The Sub-Mariner (Part One)



I am very glad the Beard and Harpoon Hand days are finally over for Aquaman.  I always saw those changes as an attempt to darken the character and make him closer to Marvel's premier ocean hero, and they never really worked for me.  Fortunately, that phase is past and Aquaman is not only back to his classic look, but starring in two hit series from the new DC Reboot.  It's nice to see him finally getting the respect he deserves.

As the cover indicates, this is a continued story... tune in for part two tomorrow!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The Lost Issues on Near-Mint Radio - Now on Podcast!

In case you missed it, my interview on Near-Mint Radio regarding The Lost Issues is now up at the Non-Productive Network's Podcast site, which can be found here:

I call in to the progam at 30 minutes in.  It was a fun time and they have a great group of people over at NPN.


Justice League of America Vs. The Hulk



The JLA has a wide variety of character types - street level heroes, champions from other worlds, detectives, scientists and space cops.  What they have never really had on their team is a loose cannon character, like The Hulk.  Sure, Green Arrow could be stubborn, but he never really got that out of control.  It would have been interesting to see how old jade jaws would have fit in among some of the more straight laced members of the Justice League.  Something tells me they wouldn't leave him alone for monitor duty!  It won't be too long before everyone gets to see The Hulk in a team situation, when The Avengers hits the big screen. I trust that Joss Whedon will utilize him well.

Monday, December 26, 2011

The Creeper and Spider-Man



Welcome to the first issue of Super-Team Family: The Lost Issues!  I was trying to think of what to do for my follow up to B&B and MTIO, and this felt like the next natural progression.  Super-Team Family was a short lived DC series in the 70's which presented a combination of reprints and new material featuring superhero teams and team-ups.  They would have the old stand-by's like Superman and Batman, but then they would have an interesting team-up like Wildcat and The Creeper or The Flash and The New Gods.  It was those offbeat team-ups that appealed to me the most, and they served as a huge inspiration for this blog.

The Original STF ran only 15 issues, but the Lost Issues will run considerably longer.  I have many, many covers ready to go and I am making more all the time, so buckle up! You will notice a few differences in this series from the other two titles that I took on.  First off, the cover says it all - going forward, there will be no fixed host of the series and any issue can feature anybody teaming with anybody.  The random numbering is gone and STF will be presented sequentially.  Also gone is posting in any kind of alphabetical order, so you'll never have an inkling of what is coming up next.  The wide open aspect of this new title has opened up a world of possibilities and I plan to have fun with it!

I decided to kick off the series with a meeting of  my two favorite Steve Ditko characters.  Of course, I was halfway through with it when I realized that I had used a Jack Kirby Spider-Man figure - oops!  Oh well, at least the headshot on the wanted poster is by Ditko!

I hope everyone who has enjoyed this blog so far will like the new direction!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Batman and The Grinch



Merry Christmas and happy holidays to all of the Lost Issues readers! I truly appreciate everyone who makes the time to stop in and check out the covers and I wish you a great holiday season close by the ones you love.  The blog grew in popularity last year and hopefully will continue to do so in 2012.  I was glad to ge a chance to use the Grinch here, star of perhaps the greatest Christmas cartoon ever.  You really can't go wrong with the combination of Doctor Seuss, Chuck Jones and Boris Karloff!

Make sure you come back Monday for the ALL-NEW Lost Issues!  Be here on the ground floor of a bold new era!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Batman and Zorro



Given the strong connections between these two characters, it's surprising that we have never seen them meet up. In the days before comic book film adaptations were a commonplace occurance,  heroes like Tarzan,  Robin Hood, The Lone Ranger and Zorro were the closest thing to superheroes in the movies, and I would watch anything that featured them.  I enjoyed the Antonio Banderas Zorro movies as they reminded me of some of those earlier swashbuckling films.  It's been a while though, so I wouldn't mind a new take on Zorro to hit the big or small screen soon.

Well, folks - that's the end of the alphabet!  I have one more B&B Cover for tomorrow and that's it for B&B... where to from here?  Make sure you tune in on Monday, December 26th for the debut of the all-new Lost Issues Title!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Batman and Xena, Warrior Princess



I remember getting a kick out of watching Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, and my favorite episodes were always the ones in which Lucy Lawless would guest star as Xena.  I was of course very glad then when Xena got her own spin-off series.  Sure the show could be corny and campy at times, but the beautiful New Zealand setting as well as the strength of its main actress kept me watching throughout the entire series run.  One thing the show proved to me is that there is no reason a live action Wonder Woman could not be successful again.  There have been a few projects featuring the Amazon princess that have had trouble getting off the ground in the past few years... perhaps they could have been well served by looking to Xena for inspiration.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Batman and Wolverine (Retro)



It's too bad that Darren Aronofsky dropped out of the Wolverine sequel.  I was not a big fan of the first film, which kind of meandered through a very thin plot, but Aronofsky's involvement in the second had me hopeful for a more stylish thoughtful flick.  There is still hope though - the movie is reportedly based on Wolverine's first solo mini-series by Chris Claremont and Frank Miller (which is what they should have done the first time).  That tale truly cemented the character's iconic status and should make for a markedly different film from the rest of Logan's cinematic outings.  Interviews with Hugh Jackman indicate a willingness to really try and capture the feel of those issues, and I hope he succeeds at that.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Batman and Warlock



Marvel's cosmic line has been in the spotlight again in the past few years, due to the talents of writers like Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning.  This is a good thing because they have such a strong stable of space-faring characters - The Inhumans, The Guardians of the Galaxy, The Annihilators, and of course, Warlock.   I have liked Adam Warlock ever since I stumbled onto an issue of his self titled series as a kid.  The Jim Starlin artwork on that gave it a sleek, modern look that set it apart from most comics of the day.  Hopefully, fans of the new cosmic stories will seek out his earlier adventures.

The Countdown to the All-New Lost Issues Title has begun! 7 days left until the big change on December 26th... stay tuned!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Batman and Usagi Yojimbo



This cover fulfills a request from a friend.  I have to confess that I have yet to read an issue of Usagi Yojimbo.  It was years before I realized he had a scar on his forehead and wasn't just always cocking his eyebrow.  I remember seeing Usagi Yojimbo when it first came out and thinking it was just another TMNT type parody comic.  From what I have heard and seen since, that first impression could not be more incorrect.  It seems to have stood the test of time and developed into quite an epic saga.  So, where is a good place to start for folks like me who have never read the character before?

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Batman and Union Jack



I've always liked the look of Union Jack.  I first encountered the character during the classic run of Captain America by Roger Stern and John Byrne.  He seemed cool to me so I checked out his adventures as part of the Invaders as well.  Comic characters with costumes based off of a flag motif are pretty common, but I think that Union Jack's is the most successful.  It is at once patriotic, intimidating and utilitarian.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Batman and David Dunn: Unbreakable



M. Night Shyamalan has taken some flack for his more recent output, but I still admire his work on the first few films that he directed.  I remember seeing Unbreakable and the first thing that appeared on the screen was some text describing comic book collecting... I knew then that I was going to like the movie!  I liked the slow, deliberate pace of the film and the real world angle it gave to the superhero genre.  I don't think the film was a huge commercial success (at least in relation to The Sixth Sense) and that's too bad.  Shyalaman has stated that he saw the story of David Dunn as a trilogy, and I would have loved to have seen another installment.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Batman and Two-Gun Kid



My first exposure to Two Gun Kid was when he traveled to the present in the pages of The Avengers.  I liked his friendship with Hawkeye  and I always enjoy man-out-of-time stories.  I thought he had returned to the old west at some point but he showed up in the pages of Dan Slott's She-Hulk series a few years back so I guess he never made it back home.  Y'know, I made this cover some time after I had done the Rawhide Kid cover and I just noticed that both have Batman being shot by his co-stars... he just does not get along with Marvel cowboys!

The Lost Issues on Near Mint Radio - Tonight!

I will be on Near Mint Radio on the Non-Productive network tonight to discuss the Lost Issues blog and announce the big change that's coming up!  The program begins at 7PM EST and I will be on around 7:30PM.  You can listen live at non-productive.com tonight... and if you miss it, the program will be listed in their podcast archives in a few days.

Batman and Tigra



I have been a fan of Tigra since her original appearances as The Cat, to her fully felinte transformation and then her time as an Avenger.  She is currently being featured in Avengers Academy.  I get a kick out of the fact that she is still rocking the bikini... I don't ever remember any of my teachers dressing like that!

I was glad that this pairing finally gave me a chance to do an all Bruce Timm cover.  He has a great grasp of body language and the ability to distill a character down to a simple streamlined iconic look.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Batman and Thor (Retro)



Well, I have seen the Thor film a few times now and for me it is a mixed bag.  The casting was great and I really enjoyed the performances, particularly by Tom Hiddleston as Loki.  OK, maybe they should have gotten a fatter actor for Volstagg! Asgard looked great and the battle with the Ice Giants was suitably epic.  My problems with the movie are that Thor spends way too much time depowered and out of costume... and even when he wears the costume it is without the helmet save for five seconds at the beginning.  And the helmet looks great, there's no reason not to have it on in battle (a trend that looks to be continued in the Avengers).  The battle with the Destroyer and final battle with Loki both seemed a bit abrupt as well.  Still, Thor is one of the tougher characters to pull of on film and Kenneth Branagh did an admirable job.  He is not returning for the sequel and the replacement director has already left the project so the next installment is currently up in the air.  Hey, Marvel - give Peter Jackson a call!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Batman and The Young Allies (Retro)



Long before the likes of the New Mutants or even the Teen Titans, the Young Allies blazed the trail for future teenage superhero groups.  Indeed they were Marvel's first ongoing team book.  Bucky, Toro and a plucky group of kids helped foil plots by the Red Skull and real world Axis Leaders.  With a renewed interest in Bucky these days due to his high profile return as the Winter Soldier as well as his recent cinematic exposure, I hope to see some new tales of this WWII super group hit the stands.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Batman and Marvelman (Retro)



Marvelman is one of the comics I would most like to read and have not gotten the chance to.  I've read great things about  the character, especially the stories in which he was renamed Miracleman. These tales have been tied up with legal issues for years, preventing any reprints from being produced.  The original issues have skyrocketed in price as a result.  In recent years much has been written about Marvel Acquiring the rights to the character (meaning use of the Marvelman name is no longer a problem), but thus far I have only seen some of his most early adventures collected. Hopefully whatever legal red tape remains will be unraveled soon and the rest of his tales can be brought back to the market.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Batman and The X-Men (Retro)



Well, I've had Batman in retro adventures with each of the individual members, I guess it's time for him to meet the merry mutants as a whole.  Now, here's the First Class I was really hoping to see on the big screen.  Alas, with the X-films wonky continuity, it seems as though only a full franchise reboot will allow for that to happen.  It was great at least to finally see the traditional yellow and navy blue outfits on screen at last, proving they could look cool regardless of any comments made in earlier films.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Batman and The West Coast Avengers



I was a big fan of the first West Coast Avengers mini-series and the ongoing series that followed it.  The Avengers had included a lot of cool members over the years and the idea of a second team operating concurrently would allow more characters to be showcased.  Little did I realize what a trend that would start!  Now not only are certain characters diluted by multiple versions of them running around, entire teams have their own variants.  There are multiple versions of the Avengers, X-Men and the Justice League operating simultaneously and it's getting pretty crowded out there.  It used to be an honor to join the Avengers or the JLA... now it makes a character more unique if they've never been a member!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Batman and The Vision and The Scarlet Witch



I have featured each of these characters before, but wanted to use them together because I always enjoyed them as a couple.  Sure, a romance between a mutant and a synthezoid was a little freaky, but that's what made their relationship so compelling.  Unfortunately, both characters have been through the wringer for the past few decades, with The Scarlet Witch growing increasingly more unstable and The Vision receiving personality wipes and new bodies.  Their romance was one of the first casualties of all of this tampering.  I think it is time to get them both back to a more stable, iconic place and see if there is any of that old magic left.  I'm just sentimental enough to think that these two crazy kids could still make it work after all of these years.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Batman and The Viking Prince



A pretty obscure character today, but I figured as one of the original stars of The Brave and the Bold (predating the Batman team up era), the Viking Prince deserved and inclusion here. Of course, the fact that his adventures were illustrated by the incomparable Joe Kubert makes him even more appealing to me.  DC recently released a collection of all of the Viking Prince stories and I highly recommend it for any fans of  swashbuckling action  and top notch artwork.

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