Thursday, January 30, 2014

New 'Cosmos' Promo Trailer


For those who remember Carl Sagan's classic series, well here's the new one that will air on Fox this spring. Hosting duties are being handled by Neil deGrasse Tyson while the show's producers include Star Trek veteran Brannon Braga and (believe it or not) Family Guy mastermind Seth McFarlane. Take a peek and leave any thoughts below.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

'Dredd: Underbelly' Hits Stores


Well it's better than nothing. One of the best films of 2012 gets a sequel with this follow-up comic book, which hits comic shops today. Comic Book Resources has a sneak peek up at
http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=preview&id=19962 so take a look and let us know what you think. (Now if someone would do a comic book sequel to Solomon Kane. Or maybe the Back to Barsoomers might start petitioning for a comic book sequel to John Carter and the Shape Shifters of Ut--Mars...)

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Comic Review: Dejah Thoris #34


Sorry for the lack of any new updates. Been under the weather but now I'm back with another new adventure for our princess.

Heading further down the Toonalian Marshes, Dejah and fellow Heliumite Landis find themselves facing all sorts of threats and obstacles, from giant siths carrying off their driver to an abandoned fortress that must be scaled. Once inside they find it deserted except for one person-Tala, the daughter of Dejah's vengeance-seeking brother Kajak. With their lives in danger from giant lizards, Dejah and company fight to survive with her brother watching and waiting...

Pretty much a middle issue setup here folks, with our heroine running from monsters, finding a new person to protect and a secret plan about to be revealed. Thankfully writer Robert Napton keeps the story moving, with enough action and even some quieter moments to make it a quick and compelling read.

I also have to give props to Debora Carita's artwork in this issue. From the character and monster designs to the big action set pieces, Carita's work has improved from issue and brings  a nice vibrancy to the series.

I know this is really short but it's a good issue for fans to enjoy and nothing else. Just have fun with it. Until next time you happy, happy people.

Friday, January 24, 2014

'The Mucker' Joins the ERB Comic Parade


Yeah I know, I missed this. But better late than never as The Mucker has been added to the growing list of online comics that ERB Inc. are now publishing. For a sneak peek at this strip and the other strips (like Tarzan of the Apes and Carson of Venus) hit http://www.edgarriceburroughs.com/comics/

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

'Warlord of Mars #100' Celebration Issue Announced


It looks like we've reached one milestone and are getting a celebration. Dynamite Entertainment has announced a special "100th" issue (which if you add up all the issues from the Warlord of Mars and Dejah Thoris series plus the various miniseries it's near the mark) that will feature three different writers (Robert Place Napton, Arvid Nelson and Mark Rahner) telling an epic tale all starring everyone's favorite calot, Woola! For more information here's the press release:


WARLORD OF MARS #100, a Celebratory Special, Coming Out in April

January 20, 2014, Mt. Laurel, NJ:  The Warlord of Mars comic series approaches a milestone -- nearly one hundred issues have been released to date by Dynamite Entertainment.  To celebrate that incredible feat, Dynamite will be releasing a special celebratory Warlord of Mars #100! This special squarebound issue is written by three key Warlord of Mars writers, with multiple stories by Arvid Nelson, Robert Place Napton, and Mark Rahner. Featuring a who's who of today's best comic artists, Warlord of Mars #100 features covers by joseph Michael Linsner, Jay Anacleto, Fabiano Neves, Emanuela Lupacchino, and Stephanie Buscema.  Also featuring special bonus material, this is a must-read for Warlord of Mars fans! This comic can be found in comic book stores and also can be read digitally this upcoming April.

In Warlord of Mars #100, we begin with a story by Robert Napton (Warlord of Mars: Dejah Thoris), taking place 400 years before John Carter's arrival on Barsoom, where a young Woola discovers an ancient First Born artifact that isn't quite what it seems. The story continues by Arvid Nelson (Warlord of Mars), as the artifact is recovered by the Warlord himself many years later.  What happens to the good people of Helium as the evil power begins to be unleashed? And what could it mean for the rest of Barsoom?  Then, in the final chapter by Mark Rahner (Dejah Thoris and the Green Men of Mars), Woola must do the hardest thing of his life: not protect John Carter.  The fiercely loyal calot must resist his strongest instincts to save Carter from horrifying brutality - or pay an infinitely worse price.

"Having been with Warlord of Mars from the very beginning, this issue has deep personal meaning for me," says writer Arvid Nelson. "Our goal from the start was to capture the spirit of the original stories, but also make them accessible for a modern audience.  I'm proud of what we accomplished."

"It's an amazing milestone for Dynamite and the Warlord of Mars comics that we've reached our 100th issue," states writer Robert Place Napton.  "It's a testament to the rich world Edgar Rice Burroughs created that we've come this far.  I can't think of a better way to celebrate than throwing all the storytellers into the arena together and seeing what kind of mayhem ensues.  It should be fun!"

"I've loved John Carter's adventures since I was a kid, and being a part of the 100th issue makes me feel like my life's come full circle," adds writer Mark Rahner. "So I need to go on a pilgrimage to the River Iss and be devoured."

Warlord of Mars #100 will be solicited in Diamond Comic Distributors' February Previews catalog, the premiere source of merchandise for the comic book specialty market, and slated for release on April 30, 2014.  Comic book fans are encouraged to reserve copies of Warlord of Mars #100 with their local comic book retailers.  Warlord of Mars #100 will also be available for individual customer purchase through digital platforms courtesy of Comixology, iVerse, and Dark Horse Digital.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Comic Review: Warlord of Mars #32


Taking a break from Tarzan news we find John Carter fighting for his life and family against a new threat...his own great-father-in-law!

With Tardors Mors suddenly found, John Carter relinquishes his title as "Warlord" and returns power to Tardors. But that proves to be a mistake as Mors quickly disbands the League of Barsoom and orders by force the removal of all First Born, Therns and other undesirables. He also strikes a deal with the Warhoons to be his allies. When Carter confronts him, John discovers that he is now powerless to stop the new Jeddak and has to go on the run with Dejah and Carthoris, leaving Helium-and Barsoom-in the hands of a madman...

Well talk about twisting expectations. While the purist in me kind of cringes at some of the plot turns, the lover of a cool adventure story finds the setup and this issue a cool thrill ride. Finding Carter for the first time since his arrival on Barsoom on the run and a hunted animal makes for an interesting story, especially as he now has to confront a man he once respected. In addition writer Arvid Nelson also raises some interesting concepts about race and hatred in Tardors's sudden decision to oust everyone who isn't a red man or had been a tyrant before only to show his own tyranny. The story also raises how Carter has been blind to what he people feel as Kantos Kan tells him that no one wanted to stand up to him. It's a thought provoking story and I'm interested in seeing where it goes.

For the artwork, artist Wagner Reis continues and well it's again a mixed bag. Some of the character designs are great-especially love his Warhoons-but Carter and some of the other characters come off less well defined. On the plus side Reis stages the action scenes well and gives a good sense of direction so it sort of counter balances the flaws.

In short this issue is a gripping thriller that hopefully won't derail in the next few issues. Until next time (or more Tarzan news shows up) Kaor!

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Margot Robbie in Talks for 'Tarzan'


I'll just cut to the news: According to the Wrap http://www.thewrap.com/margot-robbie-to-star-in-tarzan, Australian actress Margot Robbie has entered talks to take on the role of Jane Clayton in David Yates' Tarzan opposite Alexander Skarsgaard. Robbie is currently getting notice for her role in Martin Scorsese's The Wolf of Wall Street and hey she looks the part. For more hit above and let us know what you think in the comments.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Stuart Beattie on "Tarzan"


While there hasn't been much news on David Yates's Tarzan or when the Constantin Film version will show up here, here's some clues about what might have been. In an interview to promote his upcoming film I, Frankenstein, writer Stuart Beattie talked about his script for director Stephen Sommers' previous attempt to bring the lord of the jungle to the big screen. The concept for the film based on his comment would have been...well unique:

"It was the idea that, you know Tarzan's been told so many times and you've got to do it differently, so it was more like the 'Pirates of the Caribbean' version of Tarzan where it was a witch doctor in the jungle and he was raising animals back from the dead, so there was this great elephant graveyard scene where the elephants come back and they're half decomposed. It's unnatural in the jungle and so Tarzan had to set nature back to being nature."

For more on this and other projects hit http://www.comingsoon.net/news/movienews.php?id=113720 and watch the video posted.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

'Sherlock' Hits EW Cover


While we here in the States have a few more days until the premiere (this Sunday on PBS' Masterpiece), Entertainment Weekly has placed the character on its new cover as well as a preview of the article inside on their website http://popwatch.ew.com/2014/01/15/this-weeks-cover-sherlock-benedict-cumberbatch/. There's some comments from the producers and discussion of what's to come, as well as a promise of news of co-creator Steven Moffat's plans for Doctor Who. So take a peek and let us know what you think.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Comic Review: Lords of Mars #6


Let's just get to it, shall we? Also Spoilers Alert!

Surviving their "duel" in the Thern arena, John Carter and Tarzan find refuge with some friendly Tharks, who also managed to rescue Jane. Learning about the Therns' powerful "mass repulsor" weapon, Carter and Tarzan team up to stop the Therns and destroy it. Unknown to them the Therns' leader Jagati Khen has another scheme, one involving a massive army of repulsors and bring down a massive comet referred to as the "Eye of the Goddess" to end life in Helium and most of the Western hemisphere of Barsoom, leaving our heroes racing against time.

While the setup was a little too slow, I got to give everyone involved credit: They know how to craft a fast-paced rousing finale. While it may seem a little too self-contained (the whole comet plot only comes up now instead of being spread out a little more) Arvid Nelson still manages to craft a pretty cool tale. The addition of the Tharks, the cool use of Jane's new found marksmanship and some rather grisly action help move it along. The only thing that might annoy some is that, like the previous Warriors of Mars mini-series, it leaves an opening for another tale. I wonder if we'll get to see it.

The artwork is the usual good stuff from Roberto Castro, even though some panels seem a little dashed off to me. Maybe it's just me or compared to the rest of the issue but otherwise a solid A rating there.

I'll close by saying if you enjoyed the rest of Lords of Mars then this issue will satisfy and entertain you with its action and color. That's all Folks!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Tars Tarkas: A Real Museum Piece


OK how this flew under my radar I don't know. But here's the story: A Museum of Science Fiction is being readied to open in Washington DC and will include among its exhibits "A full-scale replica of Tars Tarkas, the compassionate king of the Green Martian warriors in Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Barsoom series is planned for display in the Aliens and Altered Life gallery." The only down side is that it won't be ready until 2017(!) so maybe by then Tars will be back on the big screen. If you want to see other planned exhibits hit http://firewireblog.com/2013/12/20/the-museum-of-science-fiction-to-open-in-washington-dc/ for more info.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

First Glimpse: Doctor Who Peter Capaldi on Set


While we wait for word on when the new season will start, the BBC has issued this photo showing Mr. Capaldi-still wearing Matt Smith's old clothes-and Jenna Coleman on the set.  I wonder what outfit the new Doctor will pick?

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Retro Comics: Star Wars #53


Hey, I hope you guys are keeping warm. With the recent news of Star Wars return to Marvel I decided to take a look back. So get ready to meet Aron Peacebringer, Warlord of Calian!

Floating above a sector that the Empire suddenly seems interested in, Princess Leia finds herself crash landing on the unexplored planet after an explosion cripples her shuttle. Fighting off strange inhabitants she is rescued by the aforementioned Peacebringer and his men but since they do not speak the same language find communicating complicated. After taking her back to his palace, Leia begins to trust her new comrade and his wife, the incomparable Alisandre. But with possible traitors in their midst, giant stormtroopers and some growing affection for Leia questioning his own marriage, Aron finds himself having to face a new threat...

In some respects the backstory of this issue-and the next one-is probably more interesting than the actual plot. In short, artist Carmine Infantino-who had drawn for the Star Wars comics-had been hired to do artwork for Marvel's John Carter: Warlord of Mars title but the series was cancelled before Infantino had finished. Not wanting to let it go to waste, Marvel tasked writer Chris Claremont and fellow artist Walt Simonson to fashion a story for the Star Wars series out of the artwork and well you get a feeling what would had happen if Edgar Rice Burroughs and George Lucas' creations met.

In fact for an ERB fan noticing the touches Claremont brings to the story directly from Burroughs is a lot of fun. From a Woola-like pet named Chiba to Aron's concern that the real culprits behind his latest troubles are "those insulted deities" who cult he had broken apart-a la the Therns. There is even a dance between Aron and his wife similar to the dance that opens The Chessmen of Mars. In addition Claremont handles Leia pretty well, touching on something that has been touched upon in the current Dark Horse Star Wars title, her feeling of hurt and loneliness after the destruction of Alderaan, which adds some depth to her story in this issue.

As for the art, surprisingly there isn't much of a clash between Infantino and Simonson's styles as the work is nice and wonderfully drawn. As shown below...


it really rocks. Plus you can see the original John Carter influence. And honestly it's just cool that three of the biggest name in comics is tackling Burroughs and Star Wars at the same time.

So if you have the complete Marvel run of John Carter, you might want to seek this issue and number 54 out. Take care folks.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Story Review: Mars-The Home Front


Happy New Year! So let's kick off 2014 with a tale of Martians.

After catching some fish while on vacation our old narrator gets some welcome visitors-his uncle John Carter, Warlord of Mars, and the ever faithful Woola. With that out of the way Carter relates his latest adventure, with kidnappings, betrayal and a newly discovered race of Barsoomians wrecking havoc. While at a soiree at Mors Kojak's John notices that his beloved Dejah Thoris has disappeared. When he and Kantos Kan discover several dead bodies, they are led on a chase that leads them to an undiscovered city inhabited by the sarmaks, "leather skinned" creatures who thrive on blood. And have set their sites on not only Barsoom...but Jasoom as well!

"Mars: The Home Front" first appeared in 1996 as a short story in the anthology War of the Worlds: Global Dispatches, a collection of stories inspired by HG Wells' famous novel. In this one writer George Alec Effinger combines Wells with Burroughs for a rousing short story that manages to capture the best of ERB's work with the tension of Wells' tale of invasion. The setup is handled brilliantly with the standard "John Carter coming to Earth and narrating his tale" device to the harried race across Barsoom to introducing the character of Bas-Ok, a prisoner of the sarmaks. Granted it's a short tale and leaves out most of the action but I still was riveted by the story, well written with a strong sense of storytelling by Effinger.

So if you missed this earlier tale I recommend picking up the collection-which has some other good stories by a diverse range of sci-fi and fantasy writers-and enjoy. Have a safe New Year's Day and until next time folks.