Tagged: Warren Ellis

How to Create Cool Comic Book Characters

Comic books are all the rage, and tomorrow’s star of the printed page will be the next big thing on the silver screen! Yep, Hollywood money is whipping up every able-bodied creator into a creative tizzy. WHO will create the next Iron Man, Batman and Jonah Hex so that they can be watered down into unrecognizable action figure grade silhouettes of themselves for a feckless public to mass consume?

Maybe YOU!

But classic comic book characters like Constantine, The Mystery Men and Tank Girl don’t just bubble up out of the ground like some sort of addictive, mind controlling white food substitute, they (unfortunately) have to be thought up in the minds of human beings, those rotten jerks.

“Ah dangit!” you weakly bleat. “I’m barely a human being as it is. How the heck am I supposed to come up with a new comic book character with warmth, foibles and features…especially when I only want to do so to enjoy the contemporary financial windfall that comic books are (supposedly) enjoying?”

Well, the real question, sir or madam is “Do you want a little cheese to go with that whine?”

Never fear, peasants. Unkiedev is here to tell you what to think. Follow these simple steps and you too can create legendary comic book characters! Continue reading

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REVIEWS: ‘Superman Secret Origin’, ‘Planetary’, ‘Captain America Reborn’

Time to catch up on a couple of reviews, this is a mix of a couple of books that came out this week, and last week.

Fantastic Four #571Pick of the week: Fantastic Four # 571 by Jonathan Hickman and Dale Eaglesham.  I’ve never been a Fantastic Four man, but this issue captured my imagination. From what I understand, Fantastic Four has always been about family and the impossible.  I don’t think it can get more imaginative or impossible that Reed Richards creates this machine that sends him to an extra dimensional  plane where the Reed Richards of parallel universes meet and help change everything.  In this issue our Reed helps kill Galactus, with an army of other Reeds armed with Ultimate Nullifiers.  He helps create a planet full of feed that will feed starving planets, and performs surgery on the universe.  Its a wild, beautiful look into Reed Richards and what he does to save everyone, including his relationship with Sue. To be honest, I wasn’t a Fantastic Four guy before, but I’m locked in from now on. Rating: 9.0

Superman Secret Origin #1Superman Secret Origin #1: This is like Geoff Johns doing his take on Smallville. I feel like every once in a while DC allows a writer to present their take on the origin of Superman.  Mark Waid did his take with the awesome Leinil Yu with Birthright, John Byrne did his seminal retake and now a couple years later, Johns gets his. Which is cool for people to come in and see Johns do this. Its just not that interesting, and doesn’t need to exist.  Though it does give a great explanation for the glasses, and that is kind of adorable. What can I say? I’m a softie. I don’t want to spoiler but that was pretty creative with the glasses handling the heat vision. Rating: 7.0.

Captain America Reborn # 3: Brubaker is a slow burn kind of guy.  He starts out Captain America Reborn #3 very slow, but usually by the end, you see that its worth it. His entire run on Captain America and Daredevil has been just like that, and those are easily the best superhero comics out there today. So there is no reason to lose faith on that when coming into this title.  However three issues in and we’re still on the same thing.  Steve Rogers is Quantum Leaping through his life and Norman Osborn is after Bucky, Falcon, Reed Richards and the rest. That’s been beaten like a dead drum for three issues and the only thing that has moved the story forward is it being revealed to the media that Sharon Carter was the second shooter. We don’t get any repercussions of that and its just the third straight issue of, you guessed it, Steve Rogers is Quantum Leaping and the Thunderbolts are out to kill Bucky and Black Widow.  Sorry, you gotta advance the story a little bit more than that for me. Butch Guice is nice to look at though. Rating: 5.0

Planetary #27 preview. This was in the back pages of Ex Machina #45.  It has the main characters talking about building a Time Machine, and in typical Planetary fashion, building the time machine that is already laced in popular culture. The one from H.G. Wells book, and also my favorite sci fi novel ever.  Time travel, and especially interpretations on Wells’s book, has always tickled my stomach.  Both amaze me even to this day.  So the fact that one of the best books ever written and drawn tackling something in regards to Wells’ Time Machine is something I can’t wait for. Planetary #27, the final issue hits stands Oct. 2.

With Ex Machina ending and the final issue of Planetary coming out, I can’t help but say those are the last two books from Wildstorm that I still read.  So…I’ll be interested to see what Wildstorm does when these two books end.

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Wildstorm previews the final issue of ‘Planetary’.

Planetary #27 cover by John CassadayMan, am I sorry to see this series end. Warren Ellis is still the best at trying new things to get your brain working in comics, and his commentary is some of the best coming from a professional writer of comics.  I love the guy, but frankly, there will never be anything as good as Planetary after this ends.

Wildstorm has your preview. Its alot of talk of time travel, alternate universes, and genre commentary. Which is all of which we expect coming from Planetary. When the book finishes, I’ll probably have some kind of retrospective.  Speaking of…(goes to bookshelf to dig out the books).

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Warren Ellis and the movies.

Warren Ellis says he is writing a treatment for “Excalibur.”Well, really, he says its an “Untitled Arthurian Legend” treatment,  but his producers call it Excalibur.

I’m writing a film treatment for Hollywood Gang, who co-produced Frank Miller’s 300. Hollywood Gang have previously optioned my graphic novel (with Chris Sprouse) OCEAN.

On my desk, the treatment is called Untitled Arthurian Project.

On their desk, the project is called EXCALIBUR.

And yes, it has absolutely nothing to do with his run on the X-Men spinoff book in the early 90s. Its been a long time since I’ve read anything of Ellis’s since the end of “Nextwave” and “Fell” hasn’t seen an issue in at least a year, but I did really like his short graphic novella “Crecy”. The book is about the battle of Crecy, France in 1346.  It had to be one of the most thoroughly researched, and meticulously written historical graphic novels I can remember.  So, given how much I liked that book, I must say this treatment could be something I’m very much looking forward to Ellis’s take on the Arthurian legends.

Internet Jesus is working with Hollywood Gang, the same people who optioned his and Chris Sprouse’s “Ocean” and produced “300.”

In other Warren Ellis movie news, the adaptation of his and Cully Hamner’s “Red” is moving along nicely.  MTV’s Splash Page reports that Robert Schwentke, the director of the sci-fi romance “The Time Traveler’s Wife”, may be taking the helm of the film.  Hamner, on Bruce Willis and Morgan Freeman staring in the film, said:

“I have to point out that, to my knowledge, neither actor is a done deal,” he said. “And even if I’m wrong and they are, it doesn’t mean the movie will even get made.”

Regardless, I think the state of the comic book cinema landscape could use a little bit of Ellis to shake things up.

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Today, in the news.

Reporter hard at work.

Well,  I guess last night.

  • People are lining up for “Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince” by the thousands. Its already shattered the overnight Box Office Record previously held by “The Dark Knight”. And really? Really? There are more Harry Potter fans than there are of Batman? Pssshhhh.  (I’m seeing it tonight). [LA Times].
  • Internet Jesus Warren Ellis will be appearing at the San Diego Comic Con to promote his latest animated work, Marvel Anime.  He wants to make sure that you realize that he will only be in town for 36 hours and then getting the eff out of there.  He usually likes to make some kind of line that if you want to find him at San Diego he’ll burn you with his Stabby Stabby Vision, or if you see a man running down the street in flames, that’s him. [Warren Ellis].
  • There’s going to be a “Twilight” Manga! Strangely, I think this is the best venue for the series, screw the idea of it being a “novel.” I haven’t read them, don’t plan to, especially because Meyer’s literary explanation for the reason that the Vamps can go to school with normal humans is because the town is so foggy that it blocks out the sun. [The Flickcast].
  • Natalie Portman in “Thor.” I realize we got to this quite late, but I think its mostly because of my depression in the hopes that she would play the female version of Loki. I don’t know, I just think that would rock. Regardless, I’m glad she’s going to be in the movie in what should be a extremely strange movie for Marvel, but nonetheless ridiculously fun. [MTV’s Splash Page].
  • I’m fired up as hell that Rick Remender‘s “Fear Agent” movie is a go.  To be honest with you, I will literally buy anything with that guy’s name on it. Easily one of the most original minds writing in comics today, Rick is a only just recently a father, so any support given him helps his kid go to school.  And trust me, you will not be ripped off. “Gigantic” “The End League” all of it is just brilliant stuff. This is just a big win in the department of quality that this is moving forward. [Hollywood Reporter].
  • Wow, that’s a lot of movie talk. How about Joe Kelly, and Eric Canete (current artist on “The End League”) doing a Deadpool vs Spider-Man special? I know, I know, it seems like Deadpool is getting more guest appearances in comics than Wolverine. However, I quite honestly can’t think of a more perfect team-up creatively to deliver this book. Oh yeah, there is also that awesome Skottie Young cover. [CBR].

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News roundup from WW Philly and HeroesCon.

Last weekend, there was quite a bit of news coming out of Philadelphia and Charlotte, and this wouldn’t be much of a news site if we didn’t give you SOME idea of what happened.

  • The big news spinning out of HeroesCon was Longbox, essentially an iTunes for comics.  The brainchild of  “Comic Book Tattoo” editor Rantz Hoseley, Longbox will provide single issue downloads for .99 cents with Top Cow and Boom! Studios being the first two publishers confirmed to use the service [via Comic Book Resources].
  • Marvel Comics announced a crop of new “Dark Reign” titles called, The List. Which is basically Norman Osborne’s s#@$ list of people he wants to wipe out as director of HAMMER. Marvel has the list of creators involved.
  • Phil Jimenez will be replacing Simone Bianchi on “Astonishing X-Men”.
  • DC Comics mostly showed off their “Wednesday Comics” at HeroesCon and announced that Brian “100 Bullets” Azzarello will be teaming with Rags Morales on a new “Doc Savage” mini series.
  • “Booster Gold” co-writer and “X-Men Origins: Wolverine” producer Jeff Katz announced the first four comics coming out of his American Original imprint.  Brian Lynch (“Angel: After Fall”) teams with Greg Whitta (who adapted “Akira” for the screen) for “Daybreak” a comic akin to the style of old John Carpenter/Kurt Russell movies.   Also, Katz will be writing a noir called “Vengeance is Mine” drawn by Filip Sablik. Scott Aukerman will be editing a comedy anthology. But most interestingly, Katz picked up “Blastosaurus” a indie comic self-published by 23-year old New Zealander Richard Fairgray. The comic follows a dinosaur detective who has been brought into the future to fight Velociraptor street gangs. Katz compares it to being similar to “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles”.

So, what do you think? I’m personally looking forward to see how “Blastosaurus” turns out and I’m glad that “Astonishing X-Men” will be back on a regular schedule.  Let us know what you think of these new stories in the comments.

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