Friday, July 3, 2015

THE FANDOM ZONE 015: "The Ones We Leave Behind" is Up!

"People seek the truth no matter where they find it."
"That may have been the case when you and I were young.  This world around us is preoccupied with celebrity weddings and videos of cats.  But complicated issues, issues that matter?  They take too much focus.  They take too much time away from texting and the thousand channels on the satellite dish."
"Guess I have more faith in humanity."
"Ah.  So did Christ, if I recall."
-- Ben Urich and Wilson Fisk, Daredevil: "The Ones We Leave Behind"

You guessed it, Karen Lindsay and I are back with another new episode of The Fandom Zone Podcast!  

This week's reviews of comics on television include:

Daredevil 1x12 -- "The Ones We Leave Behind"
Birds of Prey 1x02 -- "Slick"

We talk about things like the lack of Birds of Prey streaming options, Daredevil's character studies, Leland Owlsley's dangerous game, the mysterious Madame Gao, the Crane Mother from The Immortal Iron Fist, the Kingpin's creepy affection with Wesley's corpse, why Vanessa is attracted to the Kingpin, Marci Stahl's booty call, the lack of sleep at Nelson & Murdock, Karen Page being caught in the middle of Matt & Foggy, WTF is going on Under the Dome, Matt's ridiculous disposal rate of white canes, concerns about Melissa Rosenberg, Harley Quinn taking a shower, gratuitous Shemar Moore beefcake, Karen's love of Adam Levine and Maroon 5, the DVD version of the opening credits theme music vs. the original televised version, speculating on why the Birds of Prey Black Canary totally misses the mark, Dinah getting grounded, Oracle's thought-controlled wheelchair, shoutouts to the various Robins, Alfred advice on not pissing off the Huntress, Sherilyn Fenn almost becoming Harley Quinn instead of Mia Sara, comic books on television news, taking requests on what to cover on The Fandom Zone, Tom Holland as the new Spider-Man, and more!

You can check out the episode HERE and for those of you who use iTunes, we're already available HERE, so please subscribe and rate us! If direct download MP3s are more your thing, you can find those HERE as well. In addition, we have The Fandom Zone show page on Facebook, which you can check out HERE. And we're also on Twitter using the account @FandomZoneCast.

Be sure to come back next week for the third episode of the 2002-03 WB series Birds of Prey, and the Season One finale of Daredevil, right here on The Fandom Zone Podcast!

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Peter Capaldi Teases DOCTOR WHO Series Nine

It's been a long wait since "Last Christmas" aired...well...last Christmas, but Doctor Who fans are just about to get their fix of twelve new episodes.

In a new Q&A with Entertainment Weekly, Peter Capaldi, the Twelfth Doctor, answers some questions about Series Nine and shares his nervousness about attending the upcoming Doctor Who panel at San Diego Comic-Con's famous Hall H next weekend.  Here's the rundown...

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: Are you looking forward to Comic-Con?

PETER CAPALDI: Very much. Comic-Con is so legendary, so a great thrill to be invited along.

EW: You told me last year that, as a child, you were always more intrigued than frightened by Doctor Who. But are you nervous at all about appearing in front of 7,000 people at the Doctor Who panel?

CAPALDI: Very nervous. Don’t think I’ve ever stood in front of 7,000 people in my life. But if 7,000 people want to see us, it would be rude not to turn up. 

EW: If you were going to walk the Comic-Con floor disguised as a monster from Doctor Who, or as anything or anyone else, what or who would it be?

CAPALDI: A white walker from Game of Thrones. Or, from Doctor Who, a menoptra

EW: Could you tease the two-part premiere?

CAPALDI: It places the Doctor in a conflict that is central to his being, as well as containing some subtle tributes to the ’60s, and truly wonderful guest performances. 

EW: What can you tell us about the exclusive photograph from the premiere (see above)?

CAPALDI: The photo shows the Doctor about to make a mistake that has cataclysmic repercussions.

EW: How is the Doctor different this season from last?

CAPALDI: He’s throwing himself into life with a newfound hunger for adventure. He’s in pursuit of joy and grabbing every thrill that he can along the way. But I sense him running from something, that even he does not yet understand.

EW: Tell us about the villains and monsters the Doctor will be encountering this season?

CAPALDI: There is an epic sweep to this season and I think the villains and monsters reflect that. Great new ones, brilliant old ones, and some very scary creatures looming in stories with real emotional ambition.  

EW: And Missy?

CAPALDI: In the hands of Michelle Gomez, Missy is more magnificently bad than ever before. 

EW: Maisie Williams is one of the new season’s guest stars. How was working with her?

CAPALDI: Maisie is fantastic. A sharp, talented tornado. As an 18-year-old, she has taught me many new words and expressions. All I’ll say about her character is she shifts in cosmic ways.

EW: How would you describe the relationship between your Doctor and Jenna Coleman’s Clara this season?

CAPALDI: They’ve suddenly realized that they are the most fortunate people in all of time and space and are hellbent on adventure. Jenna continues to deliver a beautifully nuanced, complex, and funny performance that marks her out as one of the best companions ever.

EW: Jenna had planned on leaving last season before changing her mind. Will these be her last shows?

CAPALDI: I hope not.

Doctor Who is expected to return for Series Nine on BBC America sometime this September.

VIXEN Animated Series Casts Megalyn Echikunwoke as Vixen

Vixen is about to get animated...and possibly more?

According to Vixen Varsity, the upcoming CW Seed animated series Vixen, originally announced in January, has cast Megalyn Echikunwoke as lead character Mari McCabe, better known to DC Comics fans as the superhero Vixen.

The six-episode animated web series is set in The CW's DC Comics universe will feature appearances from several actors from the CW live-action series Arrow and The Flash, including Grant Gustin as The Flash, Stephen Amell as The Arrow, Emily Bett Rickards as Felicity Smoak, and Carlos Valdes as Cisco Ramon.  The official synopsis of the series:

Originally from Africa, Mari McCabe’s parents were killed by local greed, corruption, and wanton violence. But the orphaned Mari refuses to succumb to the terrors surrounding her. Inheriting her family’s Tantu Totem, Mari can access the powers of animals-anything from the super-strength of a gorilla to the speed of a cheetah. As Vixen, she fights valiantly to protect the world from threats like those that claimed her family.

Echikunwoke, 32, is best known as Tara Price on CSI: Miami and Isabelle Tyler on The 4400.  She's also appeared in the movie A Good Day to Die Hard, and the television series Buffy the Vampire Slayer, The Following, House of Lies, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, Supernatural, That '70s Show, and Veronica Mars.

Created in 1981 by Gerry Conway and Bob Oksner, Vixen first appeared in Action Comics (vol.1) #521 as Mari Jiwe McCabe, a young woman who grew up in a small African village in the fictional nation of Zambesi, M'Changa province.  Mari heard the legend of the "Tantu Totem" from her mother, but sometime later, Mari's mother was killed by poachers and she was raised by her father Reverend Richard Jiwe, the village priest.  Reverend Jiwe himself was killed by his half-brother (Mari's uncle) General Maksai.  Maksai wanted the Tantu Totem, which Jiwe had possessed.  Mari ultimately moved to America, where she established an identity as Mari McCabe and got a job as a model in New York City.  She used her newfound wealth to travel the world.  On a trip back to Africa, she came across her uncle and took back the Tantu Totem, using its power to become the costumed superhero Vixen.

Vixen later joined the Justice League of America, reorganized by Aquaman as a team based in Detroit, until team members Vibe and Steel were killed and the team was disbanded by the Martian Manhunter.  She eventually joined the Suicide Squad, entering into a romance with the Bronze Tiger until she walked away and left the team.

Echikunwoke will be the third actress to portray Vixen in animated projects, after Gina Torres in the series Justice League Unlimited, and Cree Summer in the series Batman: The Brave and the Bold.  However, if the web series does well enough, she could appear in live-action as well.

Vixen is expected to air online on CW Seed later this summer.

Saturday, June 27, 2015

THE FANDOM ZONE 014: "Birds of Prey" is Up!

"I resent that!  I'm as broody and romantically self-destructive as the next girl!"
-- Barbara Gordon to Helena Kyle, Birds of Prey: "Pilot"

You guessed it, Karen Lindsay and I are back with another new episode of The Fandom Zone Podcast!  Ah, but this time, we also have a special guest -- none other than my Next Stop Everywhere: The Doctor Who Podcast co-host, Jesse Jackson!

This week's reviews of comics on television include:

Birds of Prey 1x01 -- "Pilot"
Daredevil 1x11 -- "The Path of the Righteous"

We talk about things like Jesse's long podcast history with Karen, the upcoming TV adaptation of Neil Gaiman's American Gods, the backstory war between Batman and The Joker, the vocal greatness of Kevin Conroy and Mark Hamill, my shared TitanTalk APA history with Jesse, the potential of Birds of Prey, the unexpected appearance of Jesse Pinkman from Breaking Bad, Dinah as the Wesley Crusher of Birds of Prey, the difference in Dinah's TV powers vs. the comics, the first mention of DC Comics' metahumans, Huntress' personality difference after being raised only by Catwoman, the cost of superhero equipment, the Arkham Asylum money booth, Mia Sara as the Big Bad Harley Quinn, comparing Birds of Prey and Gotham, Leland Owlsley wanting everyone to know he was almost poisoned, Jesse's slightly-dated Al Haig reference, Karen's possible on-air electrocution, Karen Page's monkey balloon, Vincent D'Onofrio in Men in Black and Full Metal Jacket, the return of Father Latte, Melvin Potter the Gladiator, the private basements of bad guys, the awesomeness of Karen Page saving herself, and more!

You can check out the episode HERE and for those of you who use iTunes, we're already available HERE, so please subscribe and rate us! If direct download MP3s are more your thing, you can find those HERE as well. In addition, we have our Fandom Zone show page on Facebook, which you can check out HERE. And we're also on Twitter using the account @FandomZoneCast.

Be sure to come back next week for the second episode of the 2002-03 WB series Birds of Prey, and the twelfth episode of Daredevil, right here on The Fandom Zone Podcast!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

NEXT STOP EVERYWHERE 026: "Dr. Who and the Daleks" is Up!

"Young man, do you know what you have just done? You have transferred us in time and space and I haven’t even set the controls.  Now I don’t know where we are!"
-- Dr. Who to Ian Chesterton, Dr. Who and the Daleks (1965)

My good friend and co-host Jesse Jackson and I finally back with another episode of Next Stop Everywhere: The Doctor Who Podcast!  And this time, we review the um...interesting Peter Cushing Doctor Who movie, Dr. Who and the Daleks!

Exploring this first-ever Doctor Who movie from 1965, Jesse and I discuss things like my Doctor Who birthday gift, sending our positive thoughts to Sir John Hurt for his battle with cancer, Jesse's dread of discussing the movie, the two non-canon Peter Cushing movies, Dalekmania, Roy Castle's horrible take on Ian Chesterton, Peter Cushing's fumbling movie Doctor, Susan as a young girl instead of a teenager, why the original TV episode "The Daleks" is superior, The Time Tunnel, all kinds of differences from the television series, Susan calling Ian out as a coward, Susan being the only competent one in the group, slow-moving elevators, teaching pacifists how to fight, Jesse's hatred of bad movies, my love of bad movies, our Reverse the Polarity segmentand more!

And for those who still aren't aware of this yet, we're available on iTunes RIGHT HERE as well as Stitcher RIGHT HERE, so please subscribe and tell your friends about us. If you're looking for direct MP3 downloads, you can find them RIGHT HERE as well. Oh, and don't forget we have an officially official Next Stop Everywhere Facebook page and Twitter account, so be sure to Like and/or Follow us, okay?

Be sure to come back in two weeks for our review of the William Hartnell classic The Dalek Invasion of Earth, and look for more of Next Stop Everywhere on iTunes, Libsyn, Stitcher and the Southgate Media Group website!

GOTHAM Casts James Frain as Theo Galavan, Tigress' Brother

It's James Frain.  You know he's playing a bad guy.

Deadline reported late yesterday that the Fox series Gotham has cast actor James Frain in the role of Theo Galavan, the billionaire industrialist brother of Tabitha, a new version of DC Comics supervillain Tigress.

According to the article, the two new characters will be series regulars and Theo is described as "a new Gotham arrival, Galavan is the savior the city has been waiting for — he is sexy, heroic, and lovingly devoted to his sister Tabitha (yet to be cast).  But behind Galavan’s altruism is a centuries-old vendetta.  Galavan and Tabitha (aka Tigress) will take chaos and violence to a new level in order to bleed Gotham.  Their plan will lead to the creation of new villains…and the destruction of others."

Frain, 47, has appeared in numerous comics, science fiction and horror projects, including the television series Orphan Black (as Ferdinand), Agent Carter (as Leet Brannis), Intruders, Sleepy Hollow, Grimm, The Cape, True Blood (as Franklin Mott), FlashForward, Fringe, Invasion, and Threshold.  He was also featured on the Showtime series The Tudors as Thomas Cromwell, and appeared in the films Tron: Legacy, The Lone Ranger (2013), and Water for Elephants.

Created in 1938 by Fred Guardineer, the original Tigress first appeared in Action Comics #1 as a woman named Brooks, who was a thief and recurring enemy of the sorcerer Zatara.

The second Tigress, Paula Brooks, debuted in 1947's Sensation Comics #68 as a supervillain calling herself The Huntress, until it was retroactively revealed that she originally began as a member of the superhero group The Young All-Stars.  She later married the supervillain The Sportsmaster and had a daughter, Artemis Crock.

Artemis became the third Tigress, who was created by writer Roy Thomas and artist Todd McFarlane and first appeared in 1987's Infinity, Inc. #34.  Taking up her parents' career in crime, Tigress joined the new Injustice Society, renamed by The Wizard as Injustice Unlimited.  She later fell in love with the second Icicle, Cameron Mahkent, and became pregnant with his child.

Gotham is expected to return for Season 2 in September.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Tom Holland Cast as Next SPIDER-MAN, Jon Watts to Direct

After a lengthy search, Sony Pictures and Marvel have agreed on their new Spider-Man. 

Marvel has announced that actor Tom Holland will portray Marvel's Peter Parker, better known to comics fans as the amazing/spectacular/sensational Spider-Man. Holland, 19, starred in the 2012 film The Impossible and played the title role in the London West End production of Billy Elliot the Musical.

The actor should first appear as Spider-Man in the upcoming 2016 Marvel film Captain America: Civil War before starring in his first solo Spider-Man film for Sony Pictures in 2017. Holland will be the sixth actor to portray Spider-Man in live-action, after Danny Seagren on The Electric Company TV series, Nicholas Hammond on The Amazing Spider-Man (1978) TV series, Takuya Yamashiro in the Japanese Spider-Man TV series, Tobey Maguire in the three Spider-Man films directed by Sam Raimi, and Andrew Garfield in the two Amazing Spider-Man movies directed by Marc Webb.

In addition, Marvel announced that Jon Watts will direct the still untitled film.  Watts previously directed the 2014 horror film Clown, he upcoming movie Cop Car and several episodes of The Onion News Network television series.

And look, here's a handy press release from Marvel...

Sony Pictures and Marvel Studios are proud to announce that after a full worldwide casting search, Tom Holland will play Peter Parker/Spider-Man in the next Spider-Man film, in theaters in IMAX and 3D on July 28, 2017.  The film will be directed by Jon Watts, director of "Cop Car," the upcoming thriller that made its debut earlier this year at the Sundance Film Festival.

Marvel and Sony Pictures, and producers Kevin Feige and Amy Pascal conducted an extensive search for both the actor and the director.  The studios and producers were impressed by Holland’s performances in "The Impossible," “Wolf Hall,” and the upcoming "In the Heart of the Sea," and by a series of complex screen tests.  Following Marvel’s tradition of working with the brightest next wave of directors, Watts also went through multiple meetings with Feige, Pascal, and the studio, before winning the job. 

Commenting on the announcement, Tom Rothman, Sony Pictures Motion Pictures Group Chairman, said, “It’s a big day here at Sony. Kevin, Amy and their teams have done an incredible job.  The Marvel process is very thorough, and that’s why their results are so outstanding.  I’m confident Spider-Man will be no exception.  I’ve worked with a number of up-and-coming directors who have gone on to be superstars and believe that Jon is just such an outstanding talent.  For Spidey himself, we saw many terrific young actors, but Tom’s screen tests were special.   All in all, we are off to a roaring start.”

Feige commented, “As with James Gunn, Joss Whedon, and the Russo brothers, we love finding new and exciting voices to bring these characters to life.  We spent a lot of time with Jon and find his take and work inspiring.”

Pascal added, “Sony, Marvel, Kevin and I all knew that for Peter Parker, we had to find a vibrant, talented young actor capable of embodying one of the most well-known characters in the world.  With Tom, we’ve found the perfect actor to bring Spider-Man’s story into the Marvel Cinematic Universe.”

Sony Pictures will finance and release worldwide the next installment of the $4 billion Spider-Man franchise on July 28, 2017, in a film co-produced by Kevin Feige and his expert team at Marvel and Amy Pascal, who oversaw the franchise launch for the studio 13 years ago. Together, they will collaborate on a new creative direction for the Web-Slinger.

Spider-Man, embraced all over the world, is the most successful franchise in the history of Sony Pictures, with the five films having taken in more than $4 billion worldwide.