Saturday, January 29, 2011

Barbara Gordon's incredible journey from Batgirl to Suicide Squad member & finally a Bird of Prey

Barbara Gordon a.k.a Oracle. I'm not gonna bother to recap her history because I'm sure you all know it by now. And I think I speak for pretty much all of us when I say how much I liked the character for a number of reasons. She was vulnerable yet strong at the same time which made you feel sorry for her at times but also admire her too. Let's face it perhaps it is a bit of a cliche but the whole tragedy turned into inspiration narrative never gets old. Take what happened to Def Leppard's drummer for example. He losses his arm in a car accident because of his seat belt of all things but continues to rock on any ways! But in general I think it was pretty cool for DC (John Ostrander's idea apparently) to take a mainstream character and give her a make over that all but redefined her. That's quite a switch to go from being a crime fighter who wears a costume and kicks ass along side with Batman to now having to fight crime exclusively from a wheel chair with a computer. I would imagine this was a great inspiration to comic book fans living with disabilities. As a writer for the Barbara Gordon/Oracle character you really had to do your home work about things like the life of a paraplegic in order to put some realism into the story lines she's a part of. Which Ostrander & Kim Yale did really well in the pages of the Squad. As it so happens, Shag from the Firestorm Fan blog currently has a fantastic exclusive interview posted with John Ostrander, check it out! You might be surprised what you find out about the interplay between the Firestorm and Suicide Squad titles.
I never saw the show Birds of Prey in which Oracle was played by the lovely redheaded Dina Meyer. That seemed like a good casting move but truth be told even that didn't pick my interest in the show, but if any of you out there followed it and feel like I missed out by all means do tell. I know about the Birds of Prey comic book of course even though I never read it. But apparently Oracle had her own title at one point, and was it a mini-series? Also, I know Blue Beetle had a thing for her but never got to make a real play for her thanks to that piece of shit Maxwell Lord putting a bullet in his head. However, it appears from some of the clip art I found on the internet that her and Dick Grayson did have a relationship? If somebody knows more about that to please do share with the rest of us.

Kicking off February 1st will be my completed movie casting call for all 7 of the Suicide Squad's primary members, stay tuned.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Howie Long as Rick Flag, what say you folks?

So it's my day off today and I decided to get back to some blogging. This afternoon there was this movie on called Broken Arrow which starred Christian Slater and John Travolta. It's not the best action movie ever but it's not bad either. As it turns out Howie Long plays this supporting role as a henchmen for the main bad guy played by Travolta. Long's character doesn't really have a whole lot to say nor do they get into his past or anything but you get the distinct impression he's some sort of former military guy turned mercenary. He's got a classic crew cut and is wearing this olive green T-shirt and fatigue pants. At some point as I was casually watching it earlier today it occurred to me that looks wise Howie Long really fits the bill as Rick Flag. 6 plus feet tall and well built as you would expect with him being a former NFL star. He's got the whole squared jaw thing going on and in general has that all American Marlboro man look. Howie Long and military uniforms both field and formal dress go together like radical leftists and 3rd world dictatorships.
The question is does he have the acting chops to pull of even the modest acting role of Rick Flag? The only feature film he has ever starred in as far as I know was Firestorm (not the DC character) in which he plays some sort of park ranger forest firefighter. I've never seen it but if any of your out there have let us know how he did and if you think he could be Rick Flag.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Erica Durance: Maybe a better Plastique then Lois Lane?

Erica Durance, you probably know her as Lois Lane from Smallvile. But I bet you never thought of her as Plastique did ya? Now truth be told, Erica Durance is one of those good looking women that never did much for me. Ditto for Gwyneth Paltrow up until I saw her as Pepper Potts in Iron Man. And it wasn't just simply because she was drop dead gorgeous as a red head but because she really brought a lot of charm to the screen as her character and the chemistry between her and Robert Downey felt very real.
Erica Durance never seemed right for me as a younger Lois Lane. For one she has brown hair, as opposed to the jet black hair that the Lois Lane character should have. But just in general something about her in that role just never felt right. But as you can see she fits the bill from head to toe as Plastique in the looks department. She's got the right hair style and color and even her facial features are a pretty close match. Plastique isn't supposed to be a power house like Wonder Woman or Power Girl but I've always pictured her as having an athletic body and being a bit taller then average for most women. I guess the only question is if Durance was ever caste in that role would she be able to pull it off as an actress? I think there would be more to it then being able to do a convincing French Canadian accent.
On a side note, if you take a closer look at the clip art here you'll notice that there are two slightly different versions of Plastique's costume. I can't decide which one I like more. You've got one that has an open collar and plunging neck line verses the one that shows less skin but has an arrow between her cleavage pointing into a southern direction. I've spent a lot of time looking these over and I'm still torn! If you haven't seen it before this might be a good time to check out the first posting I did for Plastique:

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Holy shit! Straight out of the pages of Play Boy magazine here comes Nightshade!

I wish I could say I came up with this but I didn't, nor was I able to find out who the artist was. Yet again this is something I found while doing a random image search. Just in case your wondering I added the black bar because the original left NOTHING to the imagination : ) Even I have some standards as to what I will and will not post. However, should any of you out there care to have an original I will be happy to email it to you upon request. Just a quick reminder here that Nightshade has been hot for Rick Flag for years now only to have her hints which range from the subtle to the not so subtle rebuffed by him due to his emotional detachment from all things not duty related. It seems that Rick prefers the company of Bronze Tiger more often then not. But I'll give Rick a pass for now on any Brokeback suspicions since he didn't want to pursue any sort of familial relationship with his newly discovered biological son. I guess all the hard years of being a dedicated soldier has made Col. Flag comfortably numb. But I think maybe it would be a good idea for someone to slip this soldier this clip art and get him at full attention. Who ever the mystery artist is out there who produced this fine work of art all I can say is God bless you. And that's something coming from athiest like me.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Who wants to be a bad-ass secrect agent for Checkmate?

I recently finished reading issue#2 of Checkmate Vol. II and again it just blew me away how art imitates life sometimes. For those of you who read this blog but don't really know anything about what Checkmate is it's time you did. Basically Checkmate is DC's version of S.H.I.E.L.D. in which the operation and command structure is based on the pieces of a chess board. There is a White King and White Queen (Amanda Waller) as well as a Black King and Black Queen. Each King and Queen has a Bishop and Knight. The Bishop acts as lieutenant/advisor to his or her King or Queen. The Knight acts more like a bodyguard and lead field operative on behalf of that King or Queen. Then you have the pawns, who are basically secret agents through out the world who do mostly recon., intel. gathering and sometimes sabotage or just blow shit up when needed like you see here.
The White royals deal mostly with internal Checkmate matters and Checkmate's place on the global political stage. The Black royals deal mostly with field operations. And oh boy we could sure use them to deal with iran's nuclear program about now like they dealt with this N.Korean missile base. Just as an interesting side note I'd like to mention that last month in S.F. there was a solidarity with N.Korea rally in which American "imperialism" and the "paranoid anti-communist" govt. of S.Korea where the real threats to stability of the Korean peninsula and most of Indo-China. Naturally the brutal dictatorship of Kim Jong Ill's regime with it's forced labor camps, starved population, 100% suppression of free speech/press was as usual conveniently over looked by this radical left fringe party. But that's just typical around where I live in which tyrants and terrorists are saints and saviors while everything that represents Western Civilization is inherently evil. But I digress, as the director of Task Force X and The White Queen, Amanda Waller is the lynch pin between Checkmate and The Suicide Squad. This resulted in a duality of roles for some personal such as Count Vertigo who is The White Queen's Knight and also is a regular on Squad missions. But in other cases such as with Fire, that duality didn't come so easily.
Although being the White Queen largely kept her out of the ops game officially she was still savvy enough politically to find round about ways to have Checkmate perform field operations beneficial to her agenda. And what she couldn't get Checkmate to do for her she usually had the The Suicide Squad to take care of covertly. Other times she went about getting things done is some rather unorthodox ways such as the method she utilized to getting Rick Flag out of jail in Asia. She "leaked" the intel. anonymously on his captivity under the radar to Bronze Tiger who she knew would take it upon himself to rescue Flag out of a sense of personal loyalty.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

The Hayoth, adding some chutzpah to The Suicide Squad

Marvel has it's Israeli super heroes ( Sabra & Seraph) and so does DC in case you all didn't know. The Hayoth is a division of Mossad (Israeli intelligence agency) that consists of a group of four unique individuals. Ramban is a mystic with powers not unlike that of Dr. Fate or Dr.Strange. Golem possesses elemental like abilities that makes him the clay version of the T-1000 from Terminator II. Judith is a martial arts expert who uses a variety of ninja like weapons. Although she doesn't appear to have any super human powers she has been known to hold her own while fighting Batman and Bronze Tiger (but not at the same time) which says a lot for her skills as a hand to hand combatant. Dybbuk is the last member who is actually and artificial intelligence developed by Israeli science (who also gave us the pill camera, most early cell phone tech. and aol IM software among other non-sceince fiction innovations). He is represented as a little green hologram of a bald man with no clothes. Try to imagine the Silver Surfer as green and about the size of a doll and there you go. We first see the Hayoth in issue #45 when Egypt's government hires the Suicide Squad to go after Kobra who is up to no good in Jerusalem. They later reappear in the "Mystery of The Atom" story line in which the Hayoth get embroiled in a big international conspiracy cluster fuck of a situation that has the Justice League, Suicide Squad and the Jihad all in one big battle royale. We last see them in an interesting sub story line toward the end of the series in which Dybbuk "marries" Mindboggler who has long since existed only as a computer program. Mazel Tov to both of them! Apparently The Hayoth never appeared in Checkmate which I think is unfortunate because they would have been perfect for that title. While doing some research for this posting I discovered some interesting stuff from John Ostrander about the inspiration for the Hayoth:

Ostrander and Yale created Ramban five years ago for DC's Suicide Squad series. Ramban, along with a warrior named Judith, an artificial intelligence named Dybbuk and a hero named the Golem formed the Hayoth, an Israeli superteam the squad battled in Israel. Ostrander said Yale asked people about the Kaballah, which is part of Ramban's Conservative Jewish background. The writers "pieced together types of [magic] spells" based on that research. Neither Ostrander nor Yale is Jewish. But Ostrander grew up in Chicago's East Rogers Park section, which has a large Jewish population. So, he said, he "always had" an appreciation for Judaism. Ostrander said Ramban is a "nice counterpart" to Father Craemer, another character in the series. He said the two men are "in many ways very much alike. They're strong representatives of their faith. "He's one of the more pleasant characters," Ostrander said of Ramban. "He's got a great deal of honesty."

However, where as the Hayoth have dealt with threats toward their country against the likes of Kobra and the Jihad, they may not be up to dealing with the worst threat of all to the Promise Land: