Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year Comic Review: Blackest Night #6

2009 had its up and downs, but we couldn't end the year right without some joy and excitement to welcome the coming new year, right? Just in time for the new year, I deliver my last Comic Review for 2009, and I call it the big send-off title to usher in the new year - Blackest Night #6! Prepare for thrills! Prepare for spills! And get ready as 2010 is here!

Blackest Night #5
Written By: Geoff Johns
Illustrated By: Ivan Reis

As the Blackest Night manifests itself on the planet Earth, the undead lord Nekron unleashes his ultimate trump card by turning the resurrected heroes into Black Lanterns of his own. The only two to escape this dark fate are Hal Jordan and Barry Allen, and even as they rally their remaining troops to combat the Black Lantern onslaught, the situation grows bleak for Green Lantern, Flash, and friends. Hope, however, has a funny way of showing itself when its needed the most, and even as the battle looks all but lost, the exiled Guardian known as Ganthet reveals a secret that tips the scales in the heroes' favor, and makes the outcome of the war of light as mysterious as ever.

Since the series began in the middle of this year, Blackest Night has proven to be a constant hit with each issue's release, and the hype and suspense built up couldn't be more ingenious than with a specific plot twist that keeps the reader's blood flowing and begging DC for more interstellar undead lantern zombie fun. As a result of its brilliant pacing, I'd like to call issue numbers 5 and 6 as "The Twin Towers" of the entire BN saga, and if you're asking yourself why is that so, then you have got to pick up this monumental miniseries and find out for yourselves. Writer Geoff Johns has produced the ultimate Green Lantern DC tale that will be remembered for generations, and he utilizes all the key players in this storyline so well that I am looking forward to their futures to come after all the zombie hunting is said and done. In particular, Johns has crafted new and impressive reputations for Green Lantern and Flash, and as mush as Hal shines brightly in this story, Barry shares the spotlight as well, and his role has been refined with the events that have transpired in this latest issue. Anyone who questioned the logic or the reasoning behind comic book character death in the DC Universe is being addressed with care in Blackest Night, and as we countdown to the concluding arcs of this epic tale, let's not forget the other warriors of light who play their efforts well and have branched out a new legacy for the Green Lantern mythos. Right now, the heroes may be on the losing front, but if there's anything about epic crossovers, expect the big bad twist and punch to come on the final two issues. Johns is a notorious and magnificent writer, and he will hit us when we least expect it.

The art has been handled so well by Ivan Reis that I've already become a fan of his work. SInce the Sinestro Corps War and the beginnings of BN, I've already grown accustomed to his proficiency and style in drawing the light colored warriors and other DC universe residents. The miniseries alone has propelled the artist's reputation to new heights, and I hope there'll be plenty more opportunities for this superstar artist in the future. The covers alone are absolutely flawless, and besides his work on issue #2, #6 is absolutely epic as epic can be. Can't wait

Since the main series is going on hiatus next month, this will be the final issue of Blackest Night to keep us on our toes until the series resumes on February next year. In the meantime, DC has "resurrected" a few titles to keep the needy preoccupied with some important side tales, so anyone looking for more action will be mesmerized for a while. As for this issue, it's absolutely amazing, and although I have my reservations of the new key players and elements showing themselves here, I'm still looking forward to some super awesome fun in the next year. Blackest Night was awesome when it began in 2009... and I hope it will end in awesome fashion in 2010! Happy New Year folks!

Score - 10/10

Journey Through The Decade: Batman...

First and Foremost - HAPPY NEW YEAR FOLKS!

It's the last day of 2009, and in a few hours, we usher in the new year and look forward to more days of prosperity and good blessings. While there's so much to look forward to in the next 365 days, I tend to reminisce about the past and remember the good times the last 10 years have brought to me. In regards to that subject, I wanted to post down and note some of my favorite stuff, to commemorate a decade's worth of inspiration, creativity, and awesomeness. As a start to things, I will delve into the recent media history and influence of one of the most popular Superheroes the world has ever known - The Batman.

The character of Batman has always fascinated me with the fact that he was a superhero with no superpowers, relying instead on his own strength, intelligence, and skills to combat crime and defend the innocent as a "creature of the night". Billionaire playboy Bruce Wayne witnessed a tragedy in his childhood that changed him forever - the murder of his own parents to a man with a gun. Making an oath that night, he swore to eliminate the criminal element that took their lives, training himself to his physical limits over the years and finally garbing himself under the guise of a Bat - a predator of the night and an creature that represented fear above all else. Armed with his own unique traits and technology acquired from his own given resources, Wayne became The Dark Knight - an avenger of the innocent and defender of Gotham City.

I've come to know about the Batman's legacy through extensive reading and study on the medium through which he was introduced on 70 years ago - published comics. His adventures early on were chronicled to be that of a silent warrior stalking criminals from rooftops and alleyways, and delivering safely to the hands of the police after apprehending them. Those adventures constantly evolved and devolved over time, making less of a menacing figure and then reverting him back to his dark roots as the years went on. There were several stories to tell about Batman over the decades that could arguably be all milestones in the caped crusader's career, but what is probably the highlight of this particular decade is Jeph Loeb and Jim Lee's 12 issue run on the Dark Knight entitled "Batman: Hush". Known for its action packed storytelling and uber dynamic artwork, the series became a critical and commercial hit for DC, renewing Batman's popularity and propelling Loeb and Lee to stardom. The titular new villain Hush was also introduced in this series, and has since served as deadly adversary to Bruce Wayne/ Batman to this very day. Of course, The Caped Crusader has constantly faced down threats and fights with all of his might, and even with Wayne's apparent death in R.I.P, the legacy of the Batman endures with fiery determination.

On the subject of Films, 2005 rebooted the once dormant Batman film franchise, and British director Christopher Nolan was tasked with reigniting the popularity of the hero in movies by taking him back to his dark natured roots. True enough, he came up with an origin flick that explored the birth of the character and more of the man behind the mask, and the end result was "Batman Begins". British actor Christian Bale was cast as Bruce Wayne/ Batman, and his performance was just one of sheer excellence. Bale was meant to play the role, and he lived up to it by showing dedication and intensity in his work, both in and out of the batsuit. Then you had a selection of big Hollywood co-stars joining Bale - Michael Caine as Wayne's faithful butler, Alfred; Gary Oldman as the Batman's trusted friend and ally, James Gordon; Morgan Freeman as Wayne's confidante and armorer, Lucius Fox; and Katie Holmes as Bruce's love interest, Rachel Dawes. Cillian Murphy and Ken Watanabe added some criminal satisfaction to the film in their roles as Scarecrow and "Ra's Al Ghul", but the real foil to Bruce's heroism was that of his mentor and later greatest nemesis Henri Ducard, later revealed to be the real Ra's Al Ghul, who was portrayed by the great Liam Neeson. Putting all of these talents together and working on the lines of the script by Davis S. Goyer made Begins a highly successful hero film. We had a movie that had an awesome Batman and explained the origins of his suit, gadgets, and even the Batmobile! Batfans couldn't be happier with the results, and true to the spirit of hero movies, a sequel was hinted and expected, and three years later, the world would witness something extraordinary...

Following up on Begins was no easy feat, but Chris Nolan knew that if he was making another film, it would have to be absolutely better than the first film. With a bigger budget and bolder vision guiding him, Nolan set to work on his Bat-Sequel - aptly titled "The Dark Knight". He reunited his original cast, save for Katie Holmes, who did not return as Rachel Dawes and was replaced by Maggie Gyllenhaal, and added a new talent to play Batman's greatest nemesis, The Joker, on film - Australian actor Heath Ledger. Known for his method acting approach, Ledger was tasked in making this version of The Joker a "schizo, psycho, insane criminal with zero tolerance whatsoever", and after months of brainstorming and practice, he came off with a performance that wasn't just mesmerizing to audiences - it was also brilliantly scary. Indeed, Heath's performance as the Clown Prince Of Crime was legendary, and along with the amazing pacing of the movie and co-star power of the other new acting addition Aaron Eckhart, who plays Harvey Dent/ Two Face, TDK became a financial and critical success, sharing a top spot in the list of the world's most successful movies to date. However, tragedy would strike the film, as after completing his scenes for the film, Heath Ledger unexpectedly passed away from "accidental toxic combination of prescription drugs". This sad turn of events left a mark on his fellow cast and crew members, and TDK's marketing campaign had to be adjusted a little to compensate for his untimely passing. Nevertheless, the film continued on as scheduled, as Chris Nolan wanted every inch of Heath's work to be seen by audiences around the world, dedicating the film to his name as well as a stuntman who also died on set from an accident. Upon it's release on July 2008, TDK became a phenomenon, and the world saw just how much impact a movie of its caliber can be, even if it is initially a superhero flick. Popculture comic writer Kevin Smith even noted the film as "The Godfather II of Superhero films", so with that being said, Batman's legacy in this decade is rock solid.

All Hail The Batman... and Happy New Year!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Movie Review: Sherlock Holmes

Great tidings from Hong Kong! It's technically my last day in this fine and cold weathered city, and so much has happened in the past few days that would make it such a memorable and enjoyable trip for a tourist such as myself. Checking out the sights and hanging out with familiar faces only adds more joy to the experience, and to top things off, I managed to catch one of the year end's most anticipated movies - Sherlock Holmes. The year of 2009 has brought some interesting films into the limelight, but this one takes the cake for its unique blend of comedy, action, and puns from Iron Man star himself, Robert Downey Jr. How did this Guy Ritchie film make an impression on me? Well, find out as I roll along with the review, ladies and gentlemen.

First and foremost, this is NOT your grandaddy's Sherlock Holmes, so eliminate all presumptions and preconceived ideas you have about this movie before actually watching it. The character Robert Downey Jr. portrays is one of brilliance, logic, and insanity. His take on Holmes is one of an eccentric detective who will use his powers of deduction to solve a case and go through it by any means necessary, and that counts for an unorthodox approach. To say that the actor fits the role like a glove is a complete understatement - he was born to play the role, and his catchy English accent adds credit to his portrayal of the legendary English sleuth. His partner and good friend Watson, played the equally talented Jude Law, is a great foil to Holmes' weirdness. Here you have two completely opposite people people who don't have anything in common - save for the thrill of solving crimes and serving London for the betterment of king and country. I always imagined Dr. Watson to be nothing more than a sidekick who follows Holmes' lead at every case, but this movie proves the contrary, and makes the duo a fantastic tag team acting force onscreen. As for the rest of the cast, Rachel McAdams is beautiful as Irene Adler, Holmes' on and off rival and love interest, and Mark Strong convinces the public he's a big bad guy as Lord Darkwood. For those who are looking for Professor Moriarty, he only plays a small role here, and I wouldn't be surprised if a sequel is in the works too. The film was awesome, but may be a tad bit cliche/ typical for an modernized action flick. Regardless, the film is a cross between the action/ comedy of a Mummy/Van Helsing movie and the beginnings of a hero as shown in Casino Royale/ Batman Begins. Definitely a must see if you are a fan of those elements, RDJ, or Guy Ritchie films in general.

Rating - 4/5

Well, time to go. The Game's a'foot.;)

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The Ryu Exhibition!

Since the days of Street Fighter II, there hasn't been any other character I have used as frequently as the lone Shotokan warrior known as Ryu. The wandering loner from Japan continues to stand as a symbol of pure determination in the world of fighting, and his quest to seek true strength from his clashes with other world warriors is a feat that is respectable as it is to commended. Admittedly, I started out as a Ken player, preferring his flashy combat style to Ryu's solid techniques. However, as the combat engine evolved and the CPS-2 engine paved the way for the Street Fighter Alpha/ Zero series, my direction changed and I started using the headband wearing warrior. Since then, despite my attempts to rotate between other SF characters and "shoto-clones", Ryu has remained a constant in my side, and his evolution as fighter continues to impress me and the rest of his fans around the world. From his concentrated Hadoken to the Shin Shoryuken, there's no stopping this man from achieving his goals, and to get a better understanding of this one man army, it's best you see this video below:

The Ryu Street Fighter Exhibition

"The Answer Lies In The Heart Of Battle..." - Ryu's pre-battle animation quote from Street Fighter IV

Monday, December 28, 2009

Mega64 Holiday Employee Guide!

The title says it all. Go and check what these guys are are up to for this Holiday season.XD

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Prepare For Inception...

It seems I'm not quite done with the postings yet, as this little poster caught my eye. This is one of the movies I'm really looking forward to in the next year, particularly because it is directed by the man who rebooted and resurrected the Batman Film franchise successfully. Take a look and behold the awesomeness:

Inception - The next work by Christopher Nolan, the director of the Batman Begins, Memento, and the mega spectacular 2008 movie, The Dark Knight. It stars Leonardo DiCaprio, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ken Watanabe, Michael Caine, and Cillian Murphy, and is "a science fiction movie set within the architecture of the mind". Months ago, a teaser trailer was posted that depicted just what to expect from this film. Check it out:

Inception Teaser Trailer

Inception will release itself on July 16, 2010. Prepare for a mind trip.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Holiday Notice and Comic Review: Captain America: Who Will Wield The Shield!

Hey folks! Wishing all of you guys a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! With 2010 so close and the holiday spirit up in the air, even bloggers like me need some R&R to catch up on the holidays. That being said, I'll be taking few days of vacation, but I'll be back just before the new year dawns on us. Before that though, here's a review on a very special issue of Captain America that true believers DARE NOT miss if they've been following the series religiously since Ed Brubaker took over writing duties. This particular one shot special covers what happens after the events of Captain America: Reborn - a series that has yet to conclude until next month and ushers in the return of the original shield slinging hero, Steve Rogers. Still, this book hardly spoils what is already a forgone conclusion, so the only question remains - who will wield the shield?

Captain America: Who Will Wield The Shield?

Written By: Ed Brubaker
Illustrated By: Butch Guice
& Luke Ross

Steve Rogers, the original Captain America, is back. After being lost in time and subjected to the diabolical machinations of his archnemesis, The Red Skull, Cap has reclaimed his mind, body, and soul, and is now back in the present day alongside his friends and fellow avengers. However, Steve hasn't fully recovered from his ordeal yet, and the uniform he has worn for so long has gone to his old friend and partner from World War II, Bucky Barnes. The former Winter Soldier has carried on the fight as the new Captain America since Rogers' passing, but with him back among the living, he is ready to give the mantle back to his mentor. Still, is Bucky willing to part with the shield, and is Steve ready to reclaim his old identity?

Right smack in the holidays, Brubaker has landed us a Cap tale worthy of note and praise. Truth be told, it's been a long time since I enjoyed reading a Captain America book, and while I had my worries about how this special would turn out in the end, it completely kept my eyes glued to the action and the writing was just excellent. Since Reborn started, the pacing hasn't been quite the same. It's a known fact that we all wanted the original Cap back, but justifying his return as a result of space and time distortion wasn't really my cup of tea after all the work put out in making the main series an iconic and espionage laced bestseller. Add to the fact that Bucky turned out to be a GREAT Captain America after Roger's death, and the math just doesn't add up to how Reborn brought back the original sentinel of liberty. It puts aside all the hardwork and attention Barnes has earned and turns him into little more than a sidekick again, which is just too harsh. Thankfully, this one shot remedies all of those concerns and addresses the situation between the two Captain Americas. Close allies, friends, and even enemies gather to bring the issue to light and see just who between the two are ready and worthy to continue as the symbol of justice. Doubt of one's own capabilities and concern for the others future are the big themes playing out here, and it works well with the dynamic played out between the two blue boys. Steve and Bucky are portrayed as genuine friends who have the utmost respect and understanding for one another, and it's this friendship that helps mend the fences and concerns about who should be carrying the "matrix of leadership". As always, there will be no spoilers here, but it isn't too hard to figure out the obvious route this series is going... or is it? That's something to be determined by the readers themselves, and this book is a start to all great things to come.

The art here can be a little inconsistent, and that's solely due to the fact that two artists are on board to pencil this issue. Butch Guice and Luke Ross are alumni themselves in all things Cap, so fans who've been on board for the longest time will recognize their drawings well and good for the duration of the read. While inconsistency may be a problem, that's not to say their portrayals of the characters and action scenes are a bad thing. Each does what he does best in their own way, and it lives up to the momentum and spectacular awe built up through the narration and flow of the story. If Brubaker had to pick his team of artists alongside longtime collaborator Steve Epting, I think Guice and Ross would make the cut with no questions ask. As for the cover, it's a spectacular piece by Gerald Parel, and it sends a clear message to folks out there that's one of awesome and epicness.

With the new year upon us and Steve Rogers back in the fold, I would undoubtedly say that WWWTS is a special that no Cap fan... or COMIC FAN should miss. Those out of the loop for a long time may be wondering what the heck is going on at this point, but fret not, this is a clever issue that gives a good idea of what transpired on Reborn and what the fate of the Captain America legacy will be. It's also a book that puts to rest old issues and concerns that have stemmed as far back as Civil War, and there's also a special meeting on the last page that will give fans a chuckle... as well as a lead on to the big Marvel event beginning next month. For now, Captain America is back, and we're all happy he's here to stay.

Score - 10/10

Well, this may be the last post for now, so belated Merry Christmas and have a Happy New Year Folks! Chow!

Friday, December 25, 2009

A Street Fighter Christmas?!

While browsing for some holiday videos in you tube, I chanced upon this interesting Xmas mash up, featuring none other than Capcom's brawling family themselves. You just have to see it to believe it, and try deciphering the dialogue if you can *cues generic SF laugh*

The Holiday Fighting Spirit is upon us! Merry Christmas Folks!XD

Thursday, December 24, 2009

'Tis The Night Before X-mas...

It's a quiet night before the big day, and even those who work and play all year long have to stop, relax, and spend some quality time with their loved ones. One night of bliss and tenderness to share, and lots of food and goodies to look forward to. Holiday season officially starts here, and as we look forward to the new year soon, it's time to reflect on the good times and blessings! Here's a Christmas song to welcome the most wonderful time of the year!

LOL! And before you open your gifts kiddies, be sure to gather around with your family and friends and give thanks for all the things you've had this year! Merry Christmas everybody!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Super Street Fighter IV And Other Capcom Games Delayed!

A Major announcement from Capcom came via Kotaku, as major gaming titles expected to hit in early 2010 were pushed back to meet the company's fiscal year demands. That means games like Super Street Fighter IV, Lost Planet 2, and Dead Rising 2 are delayed to sometime during spring 2010! On the plus side, it gives a little breathing room to gamers, and Capcom won't have to compete with the other Big Guns expected to show up early in the next year like Bayonetta, Heavy Rain, Dante's Inferno, and most of all, Final Fantasy XIII! Looks like the fighters will have to hold their punches for a while, but the fight will surely come next year!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Prepare For The Tekken...

Gaming blog site Kotaku has posted up the official Japanese poster of the upcoming Tekken live action movie, and as a fan and player of the games themselves, I've gotta say, this poster actually looks pretty good. The story alone sounds compelling enough to perk my interest, and for someone who's particular about video game movies, I'm hopeful the film lives up to expectations. Since the first Mortal Kombat movie's success, other fighting game films haven't fared well in the leap to the big screen, and with the way Street Fighter: The Legend Of Chun-Li turned out, it'll take a miracle to see a brawler movie done right for once. So far, the Tekken film has incorporated pretty much the main story of Tekken 3, and by casting Jon Foo as Jin Kazama and the legendary Cary-Hiroyuki Tanada (who also played Shang Tsung in the first MK movie) as Heihachi Mishima, there are fine actors and martial artists in the cast that may just make this movie a great one. Still slated for a March 2010 release, let's hope the Iron Fist holds up and delivers spectacular God Fist action when it comes out.

Monday, December 21, 2009

SSFIV Update: Character Selection Screen and Famitsu Live Broadcast Show!

Fighting game sites and Kotaku have unveiled a screenshot of the Character Select Screen of Super Street Fighter IV from the Famitsu live streaming demo, and with that, a glimpse of new things to come. In addition to the six new fighters joining the cast of the original SFIV team, there will be FOUR new ones to expect, as seen in the remaining blank slots not occupied as of the moment. As to what their identities are, that is still a mystery, but several fans and sources close to Capcom state that they may be old faces from the SFIII universe, as well as the last remaining new original character created for SSFIV, rumored to be a Arabian grappler named Hakan. Until official word is given by Capcom, we can only imagine who's going to jump in and join the world warriors in their epic eternal struggle for supremacy.

As for the action itself, the Famitsu live streaming demo itself is up from a link from you tube, and it shows all the action to expect next year. Check it out!

Super Street Fighter IV is slated for a February 2010 release. Are you ready? FIGHT!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Comic Review: Green Lantern Corps #43

If there was one Blackest Night book that literally caught people off guard with its twists and turns, I'd probably have to vouch for Green Lantern Corps. It's the book that many won't pay attention to if they're all about sticking with the main BN storyline, but it holds significance on its own as a title the follows the string of soldiers who carry on battles that hold equal importance in the sidelines. I've made it a point to follow ever tie in I can as this event continues, and after last issue's climactic conclusion, I dare not turn my eyes away from this title... especially with what happens now.

Green Lantern Corps #43
Written By: Peter J. Tomasi
Illustrated By: Patrick Gleas

After a large coalition of Black Lanterns gather to destroy the Oan Green Lantern Central Power Battery, Kyle Rayner made the ultimate move and gave his life to protect the Lantern's power source and buy his friends some time to regroup and deal with the undead threat. Grief stricken by his selfless sacrifice, Soranik Natu and Guy Gardner rush to his side and try to revive him, but the lifeless Kyle fails to respond, and all seems lost at this point. Filled with rage, Guy's anger attracts a Red Lantern ring to his side, turning him into the latest member of the RL Corps. As the crimson artifact fuels blood boiling energy to his veins, Gardner has become a weapon of mass destruction. Will his newfound power help him overcome the Black Lantern threat, or consume him to the dark side forever?

So... Guy Gardner has become a Red Lantern.

After what happened in last month's issue, I wouldn't blame Mr. Gardner for wielding the crimson ring. Peter J. Tomasi has brought in all the circumstances that justify his transformation, and now that Guy's in possession of a new weapon, he has the rage and willpower to take down his enemies, and he doesn't take shit from anyone. It fits his profile to become such a major bad ass, and adding a new layer of grief to the equation makes him more dangerous than ever. I'm liking how things are progressing so far, and since Pete's clearly on a role with GLC, he's channeling a lot of emotion to the corps, and killing off one of the book's most important characters is not an easy task to accomplish. The reaction to Kyle Rayner's death was one of surprise and shock, and I happen to be a big fan of the Torch Bearer. He was the one who carried the fight for the corps when they were destroyed by Parallax, and seeing him come to his own over the years made me respect the guy as much as I do Hal Jordan. Kyle's death made the ramifications of Blackest Night very symbolic and heartfelt to the fans, and kudos goes to Geoff Johns, Pete Tomasi, and all the collaborators for having the guts to pull off such a big bang crossover where no one is exempt from change and death. Guy may be the one going all rage over his best bud's demise, but it's Mr. Rayner's new squeeze, Soranik Natu, who's all choked up and unwilling to give up on her significant other. I won't spoil what else goes on in this issue, but let's just say you'll be just as surprised by the events transpiring here as you were if you read GLC #42. I kind of expected the climax here to turn out this way, but not too soon. Nevertheless, Everything falls into place and order in a timely fashion, and it's that focus on continuity that makes this book, and the entirety of Blackest Night, such a commendable project.

While you can feel the emotion and tension running through the dialogue, Patrick Gleason's pencils do a bang up job bringing all the elements to life in a colorful and furious way. As Guy's new look is "all the rage", we can see how much of it is seething through him, from the crimson blood gurgling out from his mouth to the lava red power that dismembers his foes. The illustrations may look a little too animated or cartoony, but it's not so bad a rendition, especially with all kinds of wild and tragic things happening everywhere. Black Lanterns fly to destroy the Central Power Battery, the GL forces continue to fight on and hold the fort, and then you have a wild Red/ Green Lantern with nothing to hold back... simply awesome.

If you're one of the many who's following Blackest Night right down to a tee, then pick up Green Lantern Corps and follow the other players in the field. This is not the book to pick up if you're in it for the main story, but it certainly makes an impression on its own if you're a fan of every other GL besides Hal Jordan. If you're willing to check this series out, retrace your steps a little and pick up the last few issues before this one, you'll be glad you did so and the impact will be much greater, guaranteed. For now, the war of light is starting to get edgier, and who knows what will happen next time. Simply Impressive.

Score - 8/10

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Comic Review: Captain Americe: Reborn #5

At last, a new Captain America Reborn issue is available at newsstands... but it's not the final chapter yet. There's still a lot going on that needs to be told, and with that Marvel has extended the series to 6 issues, making this one heck of a cliffhanger by the time you're done reading the book. With Steve Rogers set to return to a Marvel Universe rampant with evil and Dark Reign, will he get out of this predicament with his mind and soul intact? Let's find out how everything fares with this issue.

Captain America: Reborn #5
Written By: Ed Brubaker
Illustrated By: Bryan Hitch & Butch Guice

After being pulled out of time and placed back in the present day, Steve Rogers, the original Captain America, has finally returned... but not all is what it seems. With the help of Norman Osborn, Doctor Doom, and Arnim Zola, Cap's eternal archnemesis and rival, The Red Skull, has taken control of his own body, leaving the star spangled hero trapped within the corners of his own mind. Aware of this diabolical plot engineered by the Nazi mastermind, Bucky Barnes and crew race to the H.A.M.M.E.R Helicarrier to stop the Skull's insidious plot and rescue Steve and Sharon Carter. However, things don't go too smoothly for the heroes, and all may be too late as "Captain America" prepares to make his move, which may spell doom for Steve Rogers, his friends, and the entire United States.

Alright, we've reached the penultimate chapter to the story chronicling the return of Steve Rogers, and even as the rest of the Marvel Universe welcomes him back with open arms, this saga is just wrapping up and telling the tale of how ol' stars and stripes is getting back in the saddle. Originally, this was supposed to be a 5 issue miniseries, but in typical mega blockbuster and superhero comic fashion, this was a story too big to contain itself within that given limit, and as a result, a sixth issue was commissioned to wrap things up and slated for release next month in January. Given that this series is stretching things a little bit too much, I was honestly hoping for things to end already, especially with the outcome so obvious and already reflected in comics as of late, such as last week's issue of the Invincible Iron Man. I still admire Ed Brubaker's writing talent, but in terms of execution, bringing back Cap this way is a little bit too convenient for long time readers like me. Don't get me wrong, he knows a lot about the Cap Mythos and does well in portraying the character in the comic medium, but I wish he delivered more of that "espionage style" and mystery punch he's utilized so well in the regular Cap book for a few years now. In a stark contrast, executing Steve Rogers' death a few years ago was just sheer perfection, and to bring him back this way kind of ruins the effect and importance that event had with readers. I would have preferred things being handled without revolving around the concept of time-travel, but this Lost-esque approach has already had its wheels turned, so the only end result left is to see things until its conclusion. The only saving fact is that we have Steve back... and it's been quite a while since we've seen back in the land of the living.

For this issue in particular, Brubaker went all out an provided the much awaited action bits - case in point - the ultimate showdown between the old Cap and new Cap, Bucky Barnes. Since Bryan Hitch is handling most of the pencils here, the final battle feels a whole lot like the Ultimates... with the absence of the witty and satire laced dialogue Mark Millar presented in his books. Brubaker instead delivers monologues and head to head conversations that will have the comic book fan breezing through without holding their breath for a moment. The splash pages are wonderful art though, and you'll get plenty of Cap vs Cap time in the latter parts of the issue. In the other side of the spectrum, original Cap is looking for a way out of his new predicament and comes face to face with the Skull in his own mind, trying to reclaim dominance over his own body. I would have loved a fist to fist battle that was adjacent with the present day Cap vs Cap battle, but both fights lack a little more substance... which is possibly being saved for the last issue. Butch Guice also lends his talents to help Hitch with the illustrations, and you'll hardly notice the difference, unless you look and analyze every panel and page.

For all that its worth, Captain America Reborn #5 is a steady and fast paced read compared to its time twisting and mystery laced predecessors. It's chalk full of action, and the only qualms one will probably have is that it should have ended then and there, but there's one more issue to go, and in true Ultimates style fashion, everything else has to move on and proclaim the end result even before the series has wrapped up. I'm still a fan of Brubaker and would love to see his take on Steve and Bucky post Reborn. Next week's "Who Will Wield The Shield" one shot should reveal how those two come to terms, and what the fate of both Captain Americas will be.

Score - 6/10

Friday, December 18, 2009

Thor Movie Update: Rene Russo Is Frigga!

Great news once again arrives for the Kenneth Branagh directed Thor Film!

The Norse world of Asgard will add another noble star to its family, as actress and professional movie star Rene Russo is cast as Frigga, wife of Odin and step mother of the titular hero character! The news broke from itself, and everytime I hear news about the God Of Thunder's upcoming live action movie, I get more and more excited! People will best remember Ms. Russo for her roles in "Lethal Weapon 3 & 4", "Ransom", and "Get Shorty", but her new role as the queen of all Asgard may be her biggest one yet, and she will star alongside the other big faces from Hollywood, like Sir Anthony Hopkins' Odin and Natalie Portman's Jane Foster! What a big cast to watch out for!

Thor will drop his mighty hammer on ye all on May 20, 2011!

Super Street Fighter IV Update: New Screenshots and Gamespot Special!

After being nominated and winning "Best Fighting Game Of The Year" at the 2009 Spike Video Game Awards, Street Fighter IV has established its roots firmly as the resurrected fighting game franchise fans and veterans have welcomed back with open arms. As a result, many are already anxious for the release of the game's refined "sequel", Super Street Fighter IV, which boasts more moves, characters, and right now, stages! Via Kotaku, Check out these screenies of the five new locations expected to make the final version of the game due February next year!

Fei Long and T.Hawk duke it out in the middle of Africa! Does that mean Elena's not far behind? I hope so!

Dhalsim shows Chun-Li whose home turf she's stomping on in a newly designed India stage!

New character Juri has her own home stage too. You're in Korea, Cammy!

Seth shows Juri he means business with this all new S.I.N Lab stage

El Fuerte should have thought twice before getting in Guy's way and wandering around Metro City

These look juicy as it is, and if that's not enough, then check out this Gamespot "On The Spot" special featuring gameplay footage and an interview with Capcom representative Seth Killian!

Super Street Fighter IV hits on February 2010! Get Ready World Warriors!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

iron Man 2 Update: The First Official Trailer!

You know you want it... and and Apple have got it! The first official trailer of Iron Man 2 is up and live! I won't be spoiling this holiday treat, but definitely, it's a must see! Go check it out in these respective websites, or see it right via You Tube!

Get ready for Ol' Shellhead's return! The movie launches on May 2010!

Iron Man 2 Update: A New ET Promo... With War Machine (And Spoilers)!

As Entertainment Tonight counts their way down to Wednesday for their First Look special of Iron Man 2, Superherohype and You Tube have shown another 30 second promo released by ET to give fans a "taste" of the good things to come next year... and boy are there many! Not only are we teased with the stars and RDJ all suited up, but Don Cheadle is joining in the bandwagon by sporting his own set of armor digs... as War Machine! It's a spoiler, but check out the metal carnage... if you dare!

Woah! Superior Tech! Iron Man 2 and War Machine launch their fury on May 2010!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Iron Man 2 Update: ET Promo and New Photos!

As we whittle down the days to the holidays, Iron Man 2 still continues to bust up some interesting press and photos in preparation for the big sequel next year! Via Superherohype, Entertainment Tonight has released a 30 second promo teaser of it's first look special on the armored avenger's next adventure starring Robert Downey Jr, Gwyneth Paltrow, Mickey Rourke, Scarlett Johansson, and Don Cheadle. You can check out the footage by visiting the SHH website!

As for the new photos, has posted three new pics of the cast on set, including this one of movie director Jon Favreau talking to RDJ and Don C. as they take on their roles of Tony Stark and Jim Rhodes during the courthouse scene. Check out more in this link right here.

Don't forget, Iron Man 2 Opens on May 7, 2010!

The W3 Xmas Special!

It's been a while since I posted one with the guys, but after much deliberation and discussions, we finally rounded the band back together again and held a new W3 podcast session, and just in time for the holidays! In this Christmas Special, we discuss everything from geek gift ideas to the lovely and awesome video games we played this whole year of 2009... with more to look forward to the next year. Click on the text below to grab our latest piece - featuring yours truly alongside the other W3 mainstays - G, Mia, and Mayor, or visit the site over at the blog list section! Enjoy listening, and have a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year in advance, Peeps!


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Nic Cage Suits Up As Big Daddy!

Watch out criminals, it's Nick Cage as Big Daddy in the upcoming film adaptation of Kick Ass!!!

Now, watch how Big Daddy trains his daughter, Hit-Girl, to fight crime!

For a guy who dresses up like Batman, he's one heck of a father figure.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Comic Review: The Invincible Iron Man #21

With Iron Man 2 getting more publicity and press thanks to the new badass posters rolling off the mill, it's safe to say things are going well for Tony Stark and crew. However, I can't say the same for his comic book counterpart, who's facing a lot more problems than his head can handle... literally. Right now, Stark: Disassembled may be the hottest thing to get all the details on when it comes to all things Iron Man (and beyond), because it will determine the fate of golden avenger, and what comes after that. Matt Fraction has laid down all the cards, and all we readers have to do is hop on and follow.

The Invincible Iron Man #20
Written By: Matt Fraction
Illustrated By: Salvador Larraca

Fractured and lost within the deep recesses of his own mind, Tony Stark is helpless to help himself. As he continues to make sense of his current plight, his body fights and continues to hang on to life by a thread in the real world. Left with a holographic message recorded by Stark prior to his brain deletion, everyone close to Tony ponder on whether or not they are willing to restore the brilliant industrialist to normalcy. Conflicted and frustrated, Pepper Potts is unsure of her role to help her former boss, but the timely arrival of dear old comrades convinces her otherwise. With the procedure a go and under the watchful eye of Dr. Donald Blake, Tony's friends and allies get to work and hope for the best. Unaware to them, or Norman Osborn for that matter, is that Madam Masque wants Stark dead... and she's hired the Ghost to do the dirty work.

Alright, now that the summary has been noted, I have to say - HOT DAMN, this issue rocks!

Given everything Tony Stark has done to himself over the past year, Stark: Disassembled is the next step into putting Iron Man back in the map and creating a new legacy in which he is ensured a fruitful, if not fine, future ahead of the character in the Marvel Universe. Like I said, writer Matt Fraction has laid down all the cards in this story, and in this particular issue, we get to a see all the players and all of the elements put to work into making sure Tony Stark returns in one piece. The question is: will he return in one piece? Despite the pre-recorded message and all the best laid out plans, it's still Tony who's going to do the work from the inside and find a way to come back. That's going to be easier said than done, since we have a vegetable and a body unwilling to cooperate, let alone able to breathe on its own. I like the way Fraction demonstrates how Helpless Tony is at this point, and how his friends all gather to lend him a helping hand despite all the differences and conflicts each and everyone of them had with him in the past. On one hand, you have Pepper Potts, who has had her share of losses and pain that is indirectly Tony's fault, yet she runs to him in his time of need, willing to help him and providing him with the ultimate tool to help him get back on his feet. On another, you have his comrades and friends he's fought with for years, and the appearances of a big "sights for sore eyes" fills this book with more awesomeness than ever before. Lastly, you have the thorns willing to prick and give Tony a run for his life, and God knows what's going to happen in the next few issues. I'm certainly not going to spoil what happens, but one of the variant covers already did give out who's here, and all I can say is that is that it involves a mighty hammer and a mighty shield. 'Nuff said.

Illustrating Stark's darkest hour could have been the most difficult task yet for artist Salvador Larraca, but he pencils the job so well that you can really see the realism and emotion flying through the faces of every character front and center. In terms of detail, Larraca has illustrated the best Invincible Iron Man has to offer, and certainly this is one colorful issue ripe with all the drawings and big cheeses a Marvel fan could love and adore. Being a mainstay presence alongside Fraction since the series started, I wouldn't mind seeing this power duo linger on for as long as they can. They deliver quality and strength - great and aspiring attributes that fit in with the character of Iron Man so well.

As far as star power and appeal goes, Invincible Iron Man has it all, and despite the hype being presented by the upcoming Iron Man sequel, this is one story and book that's an entity of its own that powers up more curiosity and praise from readers. If you want something with enough drama and action, this is the book fopr you. With two issues down and three more to go, let's hope Stark: Disassembled goes well for Tony Stark right down til the end.

Score - 10/10

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Holy Sequels, Batman! Arkham Asylum 2?!

During this year's Spike TV Videogame awards, a couple of trailers and features were shown to give gamers something to look forward to... and lo and behold, we're all going to get Batman: Arkham Asylum 2! You heard right! The sequel to 2009's hot Superhero Videogame has officially been confirmed, and there's a trailer to prove it, from Gametrailers and You Tube! Check it out the big tease!

Look Out Gotham! Joker's Back In Town! Hahahahahaha!!!XD

Alright, the crazies from Arkham, including the clown prince of crime himself, are on the move again, and it's up to the Dark Knight to take them all down once more. After that breathtaking gaming experience playing as the Kevin Conroy voiced Batman, I can't wait for a megatonic sequel that pushes that Unreal 3 Engine to its limits and produces what fans unanimously crave for - an OPEN WORLD GTA STYLED GOTHAM CITY! Even a website for the sequel has gone up and live, with the trailer in it!

Watch out villains, Batman's coming back... Soon!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Ode To Rival Schools...

More than 10 years after its release on arcades and the PS1, many Capcom fans and fighters like myself were hoping that 3D Brawler classic Shiritsu Justice Gakuen: Legion Of Heroes, aka Rival Schools: United By Fate, would be getting the Playstation Network treatment and be rereleased as a PSOne Classic downloadable purchase.

Sadly, that's not going to happen anytime soon.

From a report a Kotaku, Chris Svensson, a spokesperson from Capcom, mentioned that "IP clearances and rights to the game the company no longer has" were reasons why the game couldn't be released in the PSN.
It's sad news to take in, especially for those who grew up with the original Playstation release, seeing as it was one of the most perfect and well translated fighting games ever produced by Capcom. Check out the cinematics to see what I mean.

Rival Schools: United By Fate Cinematic Intro, Ending, and Gag Reel

This is just classic, and so is the gameplay below.

Rival Schools: United By Fate Taiyo High School Gameplay

Despite being set in the Street Fighter universe and including Sakura Kasugano in its roster, Rival Schools became a unique slobber knocker of its own, producing a character roster composed of student fighters representing different schools around Japan. Playing just like street fighter but regulated to four buttons only, it was pretty much established as another Tag Team fighting game. Players picked two characters to represent their side, but unlike the 2D VS games at the time, RS concentrated on one on one fighting per round, and only included the "tag assist element" as a double attack team up special the player could use when two stocks of the super meter was filled. Each round allowed players to switch to the next character, and the moves and double attack special would change as a result. Team up possibilities were endless in Rival Schools, and that, next to the amazing story and awesome soundtrack, made the game so endearing to fans. How I miss playing this game already.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Say Hello To Whiplash...

Mickey Rourke is back in his A-Game, and this time, he's wielding some deadly energy whips.

Premiering at Apple, Superherohype, and, Rourke takes center stage as Iron Man's new nemesis, Whiplash, in this awesome one sheet poster of Iron Man 2. Whippy just looks dead serious here, and how Tony Stark's gonna deal with him is something we'll all have to see when the movie comes out.

Expect the armor and the whip to clash in May, 2010!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Bruce Wayne Will Return!

Since his "death" at the hands of Darkseid, the fate of Bruce Wayne, the original Batman, has been the subject of controversy and speculation throughout the entire DC Universe. His apparent demise by the Omega Sanction has led some of his closest allies and friends to believe him dead, while others, like Tim Drake/ Red Robin, cling on to hope and have found evidence that he may be lost in the unknown, desperately looking for a way back to his own time. Even with his long time ward, Dick Grayson, taking over the mantle and cowl, Wayne's legacy as the Dark Knight was second to none, and many look at his protege as a placeholder holding the fort until his eventual return.

Well, that return is finally at hand.

Me Am Batman! Bruce Wayne creates something a bit... primitive...

Straight out of Newsarama and DC's blog, word was made official that Bruce Wayne will begin his comeback to his own time starting April next year in the miniseries Batman: The Return Of Bruce Wayne. Running at six issues, it will chronicle Bruce's whereabouts since getting zapped by Darkseid and the journey he'll pursue to return to the city he has sworn to protect.

Shiver me timbers, matey! It's Pirate Batman!

Penned by none other than the man that "killed" him in Batman R.I.P and Final Crisis, Grant Morrison prepares to send Bruce down a trip through history, as the world's greatest detective undergoes several "makeovers" to fit in with the times, and become a symbol of the era he currently resides in. Shown above are sketches by the talented Andy Kubert, who's no stranger to drawing Batman himself. More details on this upcoming Return can be read at Newsarama's post.

Look forward to the Dark Knight's return beginning April 2010!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Prepare For Yakuza 3 Next Year!

After months of staving off from giving any word as to the fate of the series in the west, Sega finally announced that Ryu ga Gotoku 3, better known as Yakuza 3 to english gamers, is coming to the US nad UK on March next year. That means there's going to be more gangs, more explosions, lots of women, and plenty of action, as only main tough guy Kazuma Kiryu can deliver. It's still three months off from the actual release, so to tide things over, a new UK debut trailer has been launched to give western fans a taste of things to come. Check it out and enjoy the tattoo mayhem.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Looking Forward To Some Peace Walker...

Many gamers out there can't wait to experience Hideo Kojima's Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker for the Playstation Portable next year, but there's a demo out at least to tide fans over while Konami and Kojima Productions work hard to make the next chapter in the Naked Snake saga another epic game to remember. In the meantime, scope out some of these fine artwork from the game itself as posted in Kotaku. It's not only the future Big Boss spotlighting the visuals, the other characters are there too, and some of them will look EXTREMELY familiar to fans of the franchise.

Naked Snake... aka Big Boss himself. Not a clone, but the one and only original. Nuff said.

MERYL?! Nah... it's a girl named, but it looks like Ms. Silverburgh

From the way this guy looks, it's Otacon's grandpa or dad. Will he be helping Big Boss out too? Hmm...

Wesker?! Nah, it's Kazuhira Miller... better known as MASTER MILLER to MGS 1 Fans!

Check out more pics in the link above! MGS Peace Walker arrives for the PSP in March 18, 2010 in Japan, and

Monday, December 7, 2009

DC Launches Earth One In 2010!

Holy TPBs! Something awesome is coming next year!

Via Newsarama and DC Comics' official blog, The Source, comic book readers can expect a new way of reading about the exploits of the favorite DCU superheros like Superman and Batman, as DC prepares to launch an ongoing wave of graphic novels that are set apart from existing continuity and will introduce a new world in which new stories will be told and contained in a brand new universe in itself. In 2010, DC Comics welcomes you to Earth One, where old heroes get retold in new tales based on a brand new continuity.

Beginning next year, the first two heroes getting this treatment will be none other than the Man Of Steel and The Dark Knight themselves. SUPERMAN: EARTH ONE, written by J. Michael Straczynski with art by Shane Davis, will retell the origins of the Last Son Of Krypton and his evolution into one of the most beloved heroes the world has ever known. From the cover alone, this looks like an interesting read, and with JMS onboard, we can expect some action packed hero writing.

If that sounded awesome, this next one takes the cake. Geoff Johns, the writer of Green Lantern and architect of Blackest Night, will be hitting the strees of Gotham City along with artist Gary Franks, as they introduce readers new and old to the legend of the caped crusader himself in BATMAN: EARTH ONE. Orphaned at a young age due to crime and desperation, Bruce Wayne made a solemn vow to rid his city of the element that took his parents lives. After years of training and studying, he transforms himself into a mighty warrior that stalks the shadows and strikes fear into the hearts and minds of criminals everywhere.

Wow... with all these talents on board, I can't wait to see these next year. Earth One, here we come!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Spotlight: Rage Racer

I'm taking the fast trip back to nostalgia lane again, all because I happened to pick this up today, and boy, what a rush this game gives me! It's all coming back!

I've always been a fan of the Ridge Racer series. Despite the realism and fine tuning Sony's Gran Turismo series offers, nothing beats the old arcade feel that Namco's driving simulation series offers, and with that exhilaration comes the thrill of speeding up, overtaking your adversaries, and crossing that finish line to the sound and smell of sweet victory. Since the age of the original Playstation, the 'Racer series has remained strong and prolific, spawning numerous titles and sequels that continue to showcase the great lengths technology will go to make racing games as real (or unreal) a driving experience as they come. However, the one title that sticks to my head like a golden egg is the third installment of this illustrious series that, in my opinion, redefined the Ridge Racer experience altogether - Rage Racer.

Released way back in December 3, 1996 for the Playstation, Rage Racer was in ways the precursor to Gran Turismo in terms of delivering an advanced single player career driving game experience. In that mode, Players could use the money they win from races to buy and customize other cars and rides, which become available for purchase as the game progresses. Courses start off easy at first, but more challenging one ones pop up as they are completed, offering more prize money and better competition to take on. There are a total of 5 Classes the player must breeze through, as well as an Extra Gran Prix mode that, upon completion, brings on Class 6, which is the finale of the game and offers more secret cars to purchase at the shop menu. Car manafacturers were entirely fictional, but most of the vehicle models were patterned after existing ones, even including a Truck and a Mini Cooper in the mix.

Rage Racer Intro

Like the past games, Rage Racer takes on an arcade style of gameplay, relying on speed and drifts to make it past obstacles and sharp turns in a race course. The player can choose between Automatic Transmission and Manual Transmission, with the latter providing a more "realistic" approach to controlling the car. Fundamentally, the game was still Ridge Racer, taking a lot of liberties from the Arcade game "Rave Racer", but adding some console elements and tweaks not present in the other games. Graphics were pretty much a step forward in Rage compared to its predecessors, and aside from the customization and single player options, this game formally introduced the female mascot and face of the series, Ms. Reiko Nagase. She happens to provide the game with some much needed fan service, and is most probably the announcer that speaks as you make waves in the game.

Rage Racer Gameplay

What is probably the big highlight of the game for fans like myself is the outstanding Electronic Music soundtrack produced by Namco's then new sound team. Unlike the other games, the sounds were more jazz and techno based, with tracks like "Hurricane Hub", "Lightning Luge", "Rage Racer", and "Silver Stream" being among the popular choices. The latter song happens to be my favorite track among the bunch, and it's the kind of song that makes for some smooth listening when you're driving fast.

Rage Racer OST - Silver Stream

Back in it's day, Rage Racer was phenomenal for a racing game in the PS1. Before Gran Turismo changed and defined the genre as we know it, this was the best driving experience players could enjoy and zip themselves into. Namco always delivered some quality products, and their Ridge Racer series, despite having some bumps and skids on the road, always came up as solid presentations in the end. I'm glad to have run into this classic again, and it's sweet to pop it in the ol' PS1 and enjoy it despite its age.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

WWE Star Umaga Passes Away...

Sad news came off the wrestling community, as professional wrestler Eddie Fatu, better known as the Samoan Bulldozer "Umaga", passed away after suffering a heart attack. Also known as Ekmo and Jamal of 3-Minute Warning, he is the real life cousin of wrestlers Rosey and Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. WWE confirmed the unfortunate news on an article their official website, and it's a sudden loss to take in for fans and peers alike. Fatu, 36, was released from the company last June, and since then he has been performing in other road shows, like the recent Hulkamania Tour in Australia.

You will be missed, Samoan Warrior.:(

Friday, December 4, 2009

Iron man 2 Update: The New International Poster!

After only a few days of seeing a new poster with Iron Man and War Machine side by side, Empire magazine and Marvel Studios have debuted a new international one sheet that shows Tony Stark wearing his entire armor sans helmet. Check it out below:

Woah. Robert Downey Jr. plays a serious face here, and that look is just bad ass! I really can't wait for May 7, 2010 now.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Happy 15 Years, Playstation!

15 years... that's a long time coming.

During the mid 90's, I never expected to own a Sony Plystation. I always thought I'd be sticking with one of the two big names during that period, which were Nintendo and Sega. In fact, The former was supposed to have a partnership with Sony that would bare a CD-Rom based system, but that fell through, and the latter company went solo and created the system that eventually became its own household name and a new gaming force to be reckoned with. That was how the Playstation was born, and I got my first taste of it in '96 with three games that changed my opinion about the console - Ridge Racer, Street Fighter Alpha, and Resident Evil. After playing those games, I craved for some PS Goodness, and eventually I got my own system, which serves me until this very day despite having two successors to its name. Owning all three consoles and a portable gaming handheld has been nothing short of fun and sweet, and I look forward to more exciting possibilities with the system as the years go by. With that said, it's time to celebrate and commemorate... Happy 15 Years, Playstation!

Read up more via Kotaku and the official Sony PS anniversary site!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Iron Man 2 Update: New Poster Analysis

Since revealing itself to the hundreds of thousands of millions of people on the web yesterday, the new poster of Iron Man 2 has drawn lots of praise, as well as many questions, as to what fans can expect on the next movie starring the armored avenger. The most obvious draw seen on the image is Tony Stark/ Iron Man standing side by side with his comrade in arms, James Rhodes/ War Machine. Like many guys out there, it's a kick ass inclusion by Jon Favreau considering the fact that in the first movie, there was a scene where Rhodey (played then by Terrence Howard) mused about putting on a spare Mk II suit... until deciding against it, but giving an awesome quip that made fans hopeful for the sequel - "Next Time, Baby". That next time moment will be seen in theaters on May 7 next year, but it won't be Mr. Howard putting on the silver and grey armor, being replaced by fellow actor Don Cheadle instead due to a much publicized contract dispute.

More info on the casting issue can be read via this article from Yahoo Movies, but the big poster reveal also came with some details regarding the plot of the next movie in regards to how Rhodey got the suit and all. This is pretty much a SPOILER (so look away now if you don't want to know), but according to the post, the Silver Mk. II armor is taken by Rhodes and given to Tony's new business rival, Justin Hammer, for enhancements. The latter is another IM foe from the books who's had a long history of creating various tech wear for armored foes of the golden avenger, and supplying Rhodes with the upgrades and firepower makes for an interesting debate - is War Machine Friend or Foe in Iron Man 2? In the comics, War Machine has fought Iron Man several times due to uneasy personal issues that have strained their friendship, so will something that drives a wedge between the two be the catalyst for an armor vs armor showdown? We'll just have to wait and see.

Iron Man 2 hits theaters on May 7, 2010, don't forget!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Iron Man 2 Update: The New Poster With Iron Man And War Machine!

I wake up to a clear day with some GREAT news for comic and movie fans! Yahoo Movies and Marvel Studios have just revealed the first poster of Iron Man 2! Check it out!

Alright! If you're all thinking "Is that who I think it is?", then yes, your eyes don't deceive you friends... it's War Machine, aka Colonel James "Rhodey" Rhodes, standing side by side with his best friend and ally, Tony Stark... The Invincible Iron Man! Man, Jon Favreau really knows how to tease 'em! This Poster looks so hot now, I'm already craving for the sequel already!

Iron man 2 launches on May 7, 2010... Superior Tech!

Monday, November 30, 2009

Comic Review: The Invincible Iron Man #20

The last time I checked on Tony Stark, he has hit bad times. In the days since he became director of S.H.I.EL.D and donned the Extremis armor, I thought Tony had everything under control. Unfortunately, the Skrull Invasion and Norman Osborn exposed chinks in his armor that were readily exploited, and with the bad times rolling high, Tony had little choice but to do the unthinkable to himself and become the anti-thesis of his brilliance - a vegetable. As sad and pathetic as it may sound, this scenario makes the Invincible Iron Man one of the most compelling books of this decade, and as we turn towards a new chapter in the life of the golden avenger, the question remains: will he ever be the same again?

The Invincible Iron Man #20
Written By: Matt Fraction
Illustrated By: Salvador Larraca

Tony Stark, the man who was the Invincible Iron Man, is a shell of his former self. As a result of his own actions to prevent Norman Osborn from acquiring his knowledge, Stark embarked on a personal crusade to abolish all traces of his technology and the Super Human Registration Act files. As a result. Tony "deleted" his own brain, leaving himself in a bed ridden and vegetative state. Leaving a message to his friends and allies via the armor he created for Pepper Potts, Stark's salvation and hope to return to normalcy rests on their hands. Meanwhile, deep in the recesses of his shattered mind, Tony finds himself in a place that seems out of place yet so familiar...

Hot damn, this book is hot, and with good reason too. Of course, it's great to see Iron Man again, but it's not a pleasant sight to see him at this vulnerable a state. Matt Fraction, the man responsible for bringing Tony to the worst condition ever in his life, clearly knows Stark from head to toe, and will tell a story so sad it almost makes everyone forget what the armored avenger did a few years ago during the Civil War, which drew lines in the hero community and indirectly led to the death of Steve Rogers, aka Captain America. Fans unanimously agree he can be a hard assed jerk, so why is he still well liked by some? Fraction leaves food for thought for the fans. Tony's a hero, yes, but he's also human, and people make mistakes. Being a futurist, he knew the cards he played, and his latest venture brought him to the brain dead scenario. With that, he leaves his fate at the hands of his friends... those who have mixed feelings about bringing the guy back and giving him a chance at absolution. One scene involving Pepper illustrates a good point - why does Tony Stark always get to be saved while those around him suffer and get worse? The answer should be obvious - he's Iron Man, that's why, and Tony's got a luck streak so high that he lives up to his namesake through and through. Even after preventing Osborn from getting info out of him, he's not out of the woods yet, and even with his allies by his side, things are bound to get worse before they get better.

It may sound like a thrownback cliche, but Stark: Disassembled sounds like an appropriate title to this arc. It's not so much about the character's fragmented state, but rather seeing the man in areas that were less likely explored over his long heroic and illustrious career. The holographic message Tony records prior to his downfall in particular reflects how human he is despite his intellectual background. Tony is quick to point out the mistakes he's made with sincerity and justification, and allows his friends the opportunity to judge and decide what to do with him. The mind sequences also show a side to Tony that's apparently confusing at this point, but will probably shed some light over his "comeback routine" as we progress with the story. It'll be interesting to see where everything leads, and how the good guys help and what the bad guys do to take advantage of the situation. Speaking of the bad guys, Normie's hubris is shown and Madame Masque makes her move, with help from an old rogue of shellhead who's probably going to be a hitmaker in the coming issues ahead.

No doubt about it, Invincible Iron Man is a great title. It may be hard to swallow if you're new to ol' shellhead, but veterans will definitely be pleased. I'm liking the direction Fraction is going with this book, and how he handled everything since World's Most Wanted is simply genius. Couple that with fantastic pencils by Salvador Larraca, and you got a top notch Marvel book to read, especially if you're an Iron Man fan. If you've just jumped on board, fear not, as Marvel has supplied a supplementary "Iron Man Saga" guide to bring readers up to speed with all things Tony and Stark. If you wanted to know more about the man before the next movie hits in 2010, this is your comic to read.

Score - 9/10

Sunday, November 29, 2009

This is... The King Of Fighters Movie?!

There will be a King Of Fighters Movie next year, and yes, it will feature Kyo, Iori, Mai, and Terry... but will it do any good? Judging from this trailer, I think we may end up in a world more far fetched than the one established over the years by the folks at SNK Playmore.

Ok... this is more sci-fi than epic fighting game madness. Honestly I never expected the KOF live action movie to work wonders. With fighting game movies like Street Fighter: The Legend Of Chun-Li "setting an example", it leaves me wondering how the future of videogame based movies will fare with films like these rolling and disapponting its hardcore fanbase. For the benefit of the doubt, I'll probably go see it for fun, but I wish the flick stuck more to its roots.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Super Street Fighter IV Update: The "New Warriors" In Full Pose!

After the big announcement that three Alpha/ Zero veterans are making their way to the 4 universe, Capcom has released more images of Cody, Guy, and Adon from Super Street Fighter IV! More images can be viewed via Kotaku, but here they are drawn in the Brush Art way!




And wait! Here's The new trailer!XD

The new warriors look primed and ready! Super Street Fighter IV hits on February Next Year! Can't wait!