Friday, April 29, 2016

Justice League vs. Teen Titans

The latest home video release further exploring the characters and world introduced in Son of Batman sends the uncompromising Damian Wayne (Stuart Allan) to the Teen Titans in hopes that Robin may be able to learn teamwork and trust. Borrowing a little from Damien's time with the Teen Titans prior to the New 52 reboot, writers Bryan Q. Miller and Alan Burnett choose to give their spin on a more classic Trigon (Jon Bernthal) story. As with the previous movies, the story lacks the Robin/Red Robin rivalry from the comics, but certainly entertains.

With both heroes and villains being possessed by a demon threatening to break into their world, Raven (Taissa Farmiga) reveals the truth about herself and her father to her teammates Beast Boy (Brandon Soo Hoo), Blue Beetle (Jake T. Austin), and Starfire (Kari Wahlgren). When Raven is captured and multiple members of the Justice League are possessed by Trigon it falls on Robin and the Teen Titans to save the day.

Mother's Day

Following the pattern of his last two films (Valentine's Day and New Year's Eve) director Garry Marshall's Mother's Day is a cookie-cutter ensemble dramaedy set around a particular holiday. Filled with paper-thin characters who all can be described by a single characteristic who are marginally connected through themes of mothers and their daughters, Mother's Day is a lazy film filled with sitcom humor and blase drama that asks the bare minimum of its cast. If it were a meal, Mother's Day would be a lukewarm McDonald's extra-value meal that no one bothered to put under the heat lamp. If it were a color it would be beige.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Arrow - Canary Cry

As the members of the team struggle to deal with the death of Laurel (Katie Cassidy) an impulsive young woman (Madison McLaughlin) assumes the identity of Black Canary and begins targeting those she blames for the death of her parents. Whether or not she stays dead, or is eventually resurrected like so many of the characters in the series so far, "Canary Cry" certainly attempts to sell the idea that Laurel isn't coming back (even going so far as to publicly out her as the real Black Canary at her funeral). Cassidy does appear in the episode as we get flashbacks of Oliver (Stephen Amell) and Laurel following Tommy's death rather than scenes from the island this week.

Astro City #34

Steeljack's three-issue arc comes to a close as the former super-villain turned private detective and one-time squeeze Cutlass come up against the arc's true villain: a greedy collector grabbing and using super-villain tech for his own amusement (and to decorate his garish restaurant). Astro City #34 is the weakest issue of the arc but that doesn't mean there isn't still plenty for fans to enjoy including a nice (if a bit hokey) epilogue as dejected Steeljacket is surprised by the support of his friends which helps the man of steel put the entire sordid mess behind him.

[DC, $3.99]

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

The Flash - Back to Normal

Barry (Grant Gustin) struggles to readjust to life without his speed which proves even more difficult when Harrison Wells (Tom Cavanagh) is kidnapped by a meta-human (Haig Sutherland) while searching for Jesse (Violett Beane). Even without his powers, Barry can't sit back and do nothing. Gathering the team and Jesse together for a little old fashioned police work, and a bit of luck, the Flash races into action (albeit at a much more normal pace).