Friday, May 31, 2013

Now You See Me

Who better to center a glitzy over-the-top heist caper on than masters of misdirection? Director Louis Leterrier offers us a tale of four talented but struggling magicians (Jesse EisenbergWoody HarrelsonIsla FisherDave Franco) brought together be forces larger than themselves to become the most sought after magic show in the world. And in their free time they also rob banks.

Those looking for an example of what separates a good movie from a great movie need look no further than the script by Ed Solomon, Boaz Yakin, and Edward Ricourt. That, along with the film's talent cast and a slick look balancing real sleight of hand with CGI effects, gives Leterrier all the necessary ingredients to offer us what could have been the coolest movie of the Summer. Despite a great set-up, however, Now You See Me eventually runs out of gas with an over-complicated final act, a questionable late twist, and a prolonged epilogue that draws out events well beyond what is necessary. The film's biggest weakness is not allowing itself to play the magician or be willing to leave the audience with any questions about what they have seen.

After Earth

Based on an idea from one of the film's stars, the latest from director M. Night Shyamalan stars Will Smith and Jaden Smith as an estranged father and son in the far future who crash-land on a post-apocalyptic version of an abandoned Earth and must work together to survive. Part coming of age story, part father/son dynamic, part horror film, and part shaky science fiction, After Earth proves to be the most straightforward movie of Shyamalan's career. Instead of twists or late reveals After Earth relies on drama, action, and ramped-up tension to play out a predictable story.

After racing through setting up this version of the future, the destruction of Earth, the settlement across the galaxy, and humanity's battle with generic movie monster aliens known as Ursas (creatures who can smell and track fear of their prey across great distances), our story begins in earnest with General Cypher Raige (Will Smith) arriving home from his latest assignment to his talented but skittish son Katai (Jaden Smith) who on that very day has been denied advancement in the Ranger Corps for his inability to show calm in the face of danger.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Psych - No Trout About It


When a out of control car chase ends in the wrecks of both Lassiter (Timothy Omundson) and Gus' (Dulé Hill) cars as well as disrupting a holiday marathon, the new mayor sends in a consultant to take a hard look at The Santa Barbara Police Department. The first thing Harris Trout (Anthony Michael Hall) does is to fire Shawn (James Roday) and Gus. In an attempt to win back their jobs, Shawn relates the series of events that led to that morning's fiasco through a series of flashbacks inter-cut with Trout's questioning, beginning with their client (Joey Slotnick) who hired the pair to discover who poisoned him and is responsible for the theft of $10 million dollars from a safety deposit box in the bank where the victim worked.

A + X #8

The concept for A + X is pretty simple. It's your basic team-up issue with one member of the Avengers working with one member of the X-Men. Broken into a main story and a back-up story (featuring a different team-up) I've found the series to be occasionally entertaining but also inconsistent as usually one story in each issue is far better than the other. A+X #8 marked an occasion where I liked the possibilities of both team-ups.

The first story gives us Spider-Woman and Kitty Pryde working together to take down the Absorbing Man and agents of A.I.M. in the New York underground. Although it was Spider-Woman's inclusion that made me pick up the issue, the story is actually far more about Kitty Pryde and how scary powerful she has become. In truth Jessica Drew is little more than back-up here.

Although I've never been a big fan of Hawkeye, I really enjoyed Deadpool Team-Up and the idea of Deadpool driving any Avenger crazy for half an issue appealed to me. Despite having some nice moments as well, the story isn't nearly as zany or outrageous as I was hoping. Hit-and-Miss.

[Marvel, $3.99]

The Baroness by Callie Cosplay

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The Flash #20

The return of writer/artist Francis Manapul marks the beginning of a new arc as Barry Allen returns to work at the police station, although in the Paper Morgue rather than the Crime Lab, puts the past behind him and recommits himself to his relationship with Patty Spivot, investigates a weird artifact that is somehow powered by the Speed Force, and begins looking into the deaths of Albert and Marissa who the police suspect was killed by Gomez.

Although the villain makes only a cameo at the beginning of the issue to kill Marissa, The Flash #20 officially kicks off the Reverse-Flash arc (complete with the villain's awful New 52 makeover). Barry's only lead is the lightning symbol which mistakenly believes is tied to Kid Flash not the hero's greatest villain who he has yet to meet.

It's great to see Manapual and his beautiful art of the Flash in action return. Next month offers the first meeting between Flash and Kid Flash and you have to wonder with the unseen villain targeting those who were temporarily trapped in the Speed Force how long it will take Barry to realize Iris is likely his next target. Worth a look.

[DC, $2.99]

Uncanny X-Men #6

When I saw the line-up of this new Uncanny X-Men title the one name included that gave me pause was Magik, and it was for the probability of stories exactly like this one. Although Uncanny X-Men #6 certainly isn't great, it's better than I expected.

Trapped in Limbo with the demonic version of Magik known as the Darkchilde, the X-Men fight back against Dormammu (with a little help from the Stepford Sisters who embolden the team to stop wetting themselves and take the fight to the demon). Although it's certainly not my cup of tea, Brian Michael Bendis tells the story well and provides some humorous moments (such as several of the team's members trying to quit on the spot).

Also intercut with this is Maria Hill's decision that she needs an inside man, or in this case woman, on Cyclops' team to have a better gauge at what exactly the mutant activist wants and how far he's willing to go to achieve those ends. Her choice is a bit ridiculous, but certainly one I can appreciate. Worth a look.

[Marvel, $3.99]

Esquire Loves Olivia Munn


Former Attack of the Show host and current Newsroom actress Olivia Munn is interviewed in Esquire's June/July issue. She also took time for a photoshoot. You can find the rest of the pics inside.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

XIII - Pong


XIII (Stuart Townsend) awakes in a cargo container on the Chinese docks just outside of Shanghai. His continued survival will depend on convincing the warring factions within Xu Cooperation and the Chinese Government that he's their agent Victor Gong, beginning by trying to convince Victor's girlfriend Ai Ning (Sarah Lian). Although M. Pong (Ho Chow) is willing to let "Victor's" memories come back naturally and lead them to the third and final Tesla letter, government stooge Winslow Wong (Jack Yang) is less patient and far less convinced that Victor is who he says he is.

G.I. JOE: The Cobra Files #2

The second issue of G.I. JOE: The Cobra Files opens with the son of the original Cobra Commander awaking from a coma. After shaking the kid up a little, the JOEs send in Chameleon for the role she was born to play, bending men to her will. Realizing his role as the team's intelligence officer into Cobra may be diminished by Billy agreeing to cooperate, Tomax makes some moves of his own by beginning to plant seeds of discord among the ranks starting with the teams technical officer Clockspring.

Although Billy has only limited knowledge of the operation, he does offer the team a target: a Tiger Team known as the Night Creepers who recently attacked a base in Los Alamos to steal "exotic materials." Flint's plan for catching the group is more than a little unorthodox as he proposes hiring the team... to break into the Pentagon.

G.I. JOE: The Cobra Files #2 is a solid issue that gives us a closer look at how the team does business, and how far they are willing to go to stop Cobra. For fans.

[IDW, $3.99]

Ridiculously Awesome 90′s G.I. JOE Commercial


[via The Retroist]

Doctor Who - Series 7 (Part Two)

After starring as different versions of the character in "Asylum of the Daleks" and "The Snowmen," Jenna-Louise Coleman is properly introduced as The Doctor's (Matt Smith) new companion Clara, the impossible girl. Over the second-half of Series 7 The Doctor and Clara will travel to the planet Akhaten, fight a Martian Ice Warrior on a nuclear submarine in the middle of the Cold War, journey to the center of the TARDIS, battle WiFi created to steal peoples' souls, go hunting for ghosts, and take on a new race of Cybermen in the universe's greatest theme park.

In both "The Crimson Horror" and the finale "The Name of The Doctor" the show brings back the characters of Madame Vastra (Neve McIntosh), Jenny Flint (Catrin Stewart), and their Sontaran butler Strax (Dan Starkey) as The Doctor returns to Victorian England and makes a trip to the one place no time traveler should ever go - his grave on the fields of Trenzalore.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Scarlet Spider #17

Given a reprieve months ago by the Assassins Guild who agreed to leave Kaine alone in exchange for the former killer doing one job for them in the future, the new Scarlet Spider's time runs out when he's contacted with his target - Wolverine. Unwilling to let her friend march into the Jean Grey School School for Higher Learning alone, Aracely dons a her brand new super-hero costume and Kaine trades in a Spidey-stealth suit for his Scarlet Spider costume and heads straight into the lion's den.

The story works well, as the Guild honestly doesn't care who wins he fight between Kaine and Logan as long as one of them turns up dead. Aracely's help gets Kaine through the students (by largely underestimating her own powers) for Kaine's one-on-one brutal fight with the headmaster that leaves one of them dead on the floor.

Scarlet Spider #17 continues to make use of the fun relationship between Kaine and Aracely as well as the self-deprecating narration of our hero. This issue is full of action as "Red Ninja Spider-Man" takes on Beast, Ice Man, Kitty Pryde, before his fight with Logan. Best of the week.

[Marvel, $2.99]

Transformers Prime: Beast Hunters - Chain of Command


As Ultra Mangus (Michael Ironside) leads Wheeljack (James Horan), Bulkhead (Kevin Michael Richardson), and Miko (Tania Gunadi) to stop the Decepticons from retrieving more remains of Predacons for Shockwave (David Sobolov) to clone, Megatron (Frank Welker) is pleasantly surprised by the return of the Predacon he thought destroyed. Learning its his responsiblity to train and take care of, however, Starscream (Steve Blum) is somewhat less pleased.

Daredevil #26

Bruised and beaten Daredevil returns home from his encounter with Ikari still unsure who the warrior is working for and who is behind the constant attacks on his life. An increasingly paranoid and fearful Matt Murdock turns to his best friend who helps Matt work through what's happening to him and uncover the old enemy responsible for his current troubles.

After figuring out a way to escape the enhanced senses of Ikari, and quickly dispatching Lady Bullseye, Daredevil is brought face to face with the invalid mastermind, once the deadliest assassin in the world now unable to move a single muscle. The choice of Bullseye certainly works, but I was hoping for something a little more imaginative from writer Mark Waid. Even after finding Bullseye, Daredevil still has Ikari to deal with, and as we've already seen that's easier said than done.

The extra-sized comic also includes an unnecessary back-up story involving Foggy's time in the hospital. It has a nice message but feels tacked on mainly to boost the pages, and price tag, of the latest issue. Worth a look (for the main story).

[Marvel, $3.99]

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Motive - Creeping Tom


It's unusual for a crime drama to reveal the killer and victim, but not the actual crime, in its opening sequence. The Canadian police procedural stars Kristin Lehman Detective Angela Flynn and Brendan Penny as Detective Brian Lucas who solve grisly murders in Vancouver every week. Who knew TV Canadians killed as often as TV Americans? In the show's opener Flynn and Lucas are called in to investigate the murder of a science teacher (Joey McIntyre) by a college kid (Tyler Johnston) who enjoy breaking into houses while their owners sleep with a friend (Iain Belcher).

Fatale #14

After a series of one-offs featuring other characters, Fatale #14 catches up with Josephine during WWII where her curiosity about her unique condition leads her into Romania and, despite the warning of a woman she trusts completely, to seek out Hitler's mystic priests known as the Thule Society.

Captured by the group, Josephine is to be sacrificed during the Convergence, but thanks to the timely arrival of a solider entranced by a map which drove his other comrades mad, the femme fatale manages to get out of Romania alive. With the punch of some sly humor and action, the comic gives us a glimpse at the series of events which led to the happiest period of her life, but not blissfully happy as the series of events inside the mountain had left unforgettable knowledge that monsters do indeed walk the Earth and they have a keen interest in her above all others.

I've enjoyed the one-offs, but I'm glad to see the comic pick up thread of Josephine's story once again. Worth a look.

[Image, $3.50]

Rookie Blue - Surprises


The Fourth Season of Rookie Blue opens six months after last season's finale with Andy (Missy Peregrym) and Nick (Peter Mooney) still undercover working to take down a drug ring. When Blackstone's (Louis Ferreira) plan to spook the ring into a mistake backfires, Nick heads out with the group alone and Andy is caught snooping by one of the drug dealers (Tyler Hynes) only to awake finding herself tied and gagged in the back of a moving van. Things get even more complicated when the dealers put a gun in Nick's hand and expect him to kill his "girlfriend" to prove that he's not part of the leak as well.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Nashville - I'll Never Get Out of This World Alive


The show's soapy First Season comes to a close with Juliette (Hayden Panettiere) reeling from the shooting of Dante (Jay Hernandez) and Jolene's (Sylvia Jefferies) suicide, Gunnar (Sam Palladio) faced with the decision of choosing a career based on a the songs of his brother or fixing his broken relationship with Scarlett (Clare Bowen) who has been spending more and more time with Avery (Jonathan Jackson) both on-stage and off, the U.S. Attorney closing in on Teddy (Eric Close), Maddie (Lennon Stella) and Deacon (Charles Esten) learning the truth that Rayna (Connie Britton) has kept from both of them for 13 years, and the arrival of the CMA Awards.

Candice Swanepoel goes Australian for Vogue

For the June issue of Vogue Australia the magazine celebrates Candice Swanepoel with a cover story and shoot with the South African supermodel. You can find more pics from the photoshoot inside.

Saturday with Mini

G.I. JOE: Special Missions #3

The race for Cobra's lost fortune continues as the Baroness' attempt to recover the billions Snake Eyes sunk to the bottom of the ocean becomes more complicated by the the Scarlett and the Special Mission force's arrival on the scene, back-up JOEs on the way (along with an entire legion of Serpentor's best warriors), and an on-board mutiny when the sailors for hire discover just what the Baroness is having them pull out of the watery depths. And Scarlett punches a shark. Twice.

Scarlett and the shark, which only take up about half a page of the comic, are really the highlight here. Chuck Dixon reminds us again just how smart and dangerous the Baroness is as she sniffs out the mutiny well-before the crew make and attempt on her life to keep the cash for themselves.

Forgive me for the water metaphor, but three issues in the storyline still feels like its treading water. I'm still interested to see where things are going, and trust Dixon to get there, but I would like events to move forward a little faster. For fans.

[IDW, $3.99]

Friday, May 24, 2013

Psych - Nip and Suck It


After Henry (Corbin Bernsen) discovers a body of a young woman, Shawn (James Roday) begins to suspect that the victim's plastic surgeon (Lori Loughlin), and a former flame of Henry's, who the victim was suing might be responsible. Running his own investigation, Henry uncovers another  patient () as well as rival plastic surgeon (Gregory Harrison) both of whom had motive for the murder. However, Shawn's theory looks more promising, especially after Henry finds the drug used to kill the victim in his former flame's purse (and gets knocked unconscious by her shortly afterward).

Fast & Furious 6

When the sixth installment of the Fast & Furious franchise plays to its strengths (fast cars, good cinematography, beautiful women kicking butt, and some terrific action sequences) it works well. Sadly, we are also forced to sit through the franchise's usual hamfisted attempts at dramatic tension and clichéd (not to mention extremely corny) dialogue which give us a mopey Vin Diesel for the first half-hour of the film and an inexplicable subplot involving Paul Walker in prison that doesn't so much shit in the face of logic as refuse to exist the concept exists at all.

Director Justin Lin reassembles the team from the last film as Hobbs (Dwayane “It’s Okay To Call Me The Rock Again” Johnson) recruits Toretto (Diesel) and his drivers to take down a mercenary group of high-speed thieves attacking military targets. For Hobbs its about using the lesser of two evils to stop a greater one. For Toretto its about bringing a lost member of his family back home when Hobbs informs him that Letty (Michelle Rodriguez) is alive and working for the murderous leader (Luke Evans) of the group.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Life-size LEGO X-Wing

Today LEGO unveiled the largest LEGO model ever built, a life-sized X-Wing Fighter (43ft. long with a 44ft. wingspan) composed of 5,335,200 LEGO bricks. The life-size model includes "a photo booth in the cockpit, engines that light up, and a slate of sound effects." Very, very cool.

Teen Titans Go! - Ghost Boy


When he realizes that the rest of the Titans won't fall for anymore of his pranks, Beast Boy (Greg Cipes) turns to the team's most gullible member by making Starfire (Hynden Walch) believe she has accidentally killed her teammate. To further torment the Tamaran princess, Beast Boy decides to begin haunting Starfire as his ghost.

The Photography of Jay Tablante

Jay Tablante is a photographer in the Philippines who specializes in "by the book cosplay." You can check out more of his work in his deviantART gallery.

The Hangover Part III

With The Hangover Part III, fans of The Hangover series will get to see one more misadventure concerning Phil (Bradley Cooper), Stu (Ed Helms), and Alan (Zach Galifianakis) in a script by Todd Phillips and Craig Mazin that returns to the lingering consequences of the Wolfpack's original Vegas vacation while largely ignoring the events of The Hangover Part II. (In fact, other than a cameo by Jamie Chung as Stu's wife and one or two quick mentions of the trip to Bangkok, the events of the second film are completely ignored.) The result is an adequate final chapter hell-bent on providing audiences with its share of both laughs and groans.

On the plus side the series breaks from tradition by giving us a new story rather than simply recycle the same storyline used in both the first two films involving the threesome slowly piecing together events from a hazy night while searching for a missing friend. Once again Doug (Justin Bartha) is left out of most of the chicanery as the trio are forced by a pissed of Vegas mogul (John Goodman) to find Leslie Chow (Ken Jeong) and the millions in gold bricks the maniac stole from him during the threesome's original trip to Vegas.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Nova #4

Sent into space to scout the fleet of Chitauri warships on their way to destroy the Earth, Nova bites off more than he can chew when the young hero decides to stage a preemptive attack on the fleet. Although things start off well, Sam soon finds himself at the mercy of the aliens and a former member of the Nova Squadron who blames Sam's father for the loss of his eye and his current predicament.

There's quite a bit of action here, and I like the character of Titus (seriously, what's not to like about one-eyes space tigers?). However, Titus' motivations seem a little shaky, as does his version of events concerning the actions of Sam's father which led to him being forced to work for the Chitauri.

The story gets a little sloppy int the middle, and there's no Rocket Raccoon, but the series continues to be fun and high-spirited, and promises more of Titus and a perhaps even a direct attack on Sam's family in the next issue. That, along with some more great art by Ed McGuinness, is enough to make me come back next month for more. For fans.

[Marvel, $2.99]

Fables #129

The Snow White arc comes to an end with the character (finally) refusing to no longer play the victim to Prince Brandish physical and mental attack which over the past few months has included breaking her arm, turning her husband into a glass statue, threatening to murder her children, borderline sexual assault, and keeping her hostage from the rest of Fabletown.

As her friends work to cancel the magical protections surrounding Brandish, Snow and the man claiming to be her true husband have a final duel which leaves Snow White free of Brandish but not without a price as one of Fables leading characters won't survive the issue (although in a land of magic and resurrection anything is possible).

I've had very mixed feelings about this arc which cast Snow in the role of victim for fall too long. Although she finally gets some justice, the loss of Bigby actually makes it feel like Brandish is the real victor here. Hit-and-Miss.

[Vertigo, $2.99]

Hawaii Five-0 - Aloha, Malama Pono


In the show's Third Season finale old friends return as Five-0 searches to find a dangerous terrorist (Michael Irby) loose on the island who has already brutally killed five Federal agents in order to escape and has kidnapped his son from the child's mother (Yara Martinez). In order to find the killer, McGarrett (Alex O’Loughlin) makes a trip to maximum security prison to have a talk with Wo Fat (Mark Dacascos). Meanwhile, after discovering she's been framed for murder, Kono (Grace Park) goes into hiding with Adam‘s (Ian Anthony Dale) help while trying to prove Michael Noshimuri (Daniel Henney) is responsible for both the murder and framing Kono for the crime.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Battlestar Galactica #1

With Battlestar Galactica #1 Dynamite Entertainment launches a new comic series based on the original late '70's sci-fi series. This means we get the classic versions of the characters, the original Colonial uniforms (including those kick ass jackets I'd kill for), and the design of the original Cylons.

As a fan of the original series I was cautiously hopeful, but despite a kick-ass cover from Alex Ross and a completely insane plot about Temporal Weapons (missiles used to make enemy starships disappear from existence), the first issue is a bit of a disappointment.

The art by Cezar Rezak isn't bad but certainly doesn't do much to make a story that's focused mostly on explaining the basics of the classic storyline for new readers all that interesting. And despite the absurdity of time missiles, the plot to this first issue by co-writers Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning feels sluggish and even, at times, uninspired. As much as I'd like to give this title time, there's not much here to prompt me to pick up next month's issue. Pass.

[Dynamite Entertainment, $3.99]

Red Hood and the Outlaws #20

Red Hood and the Outlaws #20 picks up with Starfire and Arsenal trying to convince the magic monk who has wiped Jason Todd's mind clean to return his friend's lifetime of horrible memories, whether he wants them or not. The question of whether or not we are more than the sum of our memories and whether bad memories are better than none at all is debated as it appears the New 52 editorial staff have decided what's best for Red Hood is a clean slate.

We get flashbacks into Roy Harper's first meeting with Jason Todd as well as the revelation that Starfire's short-memory has been largely exaggerated (which should quiet some of the critics for this version of the character). I don't like the idea of taking such a drastic step with the character after the hard road to redemption Jason Todd earned.

Parker

Jason Statham stars as Donald Westlake's Parker, a career criminal and anti-hero who keeps to his own code and often, as in this case of this adaptation of Westlake's novel Flashfire, has to fight for what's owed him after being double-crossed on the latest score. Statham isn't the first actor to portray Westlake's character (Lee Marvin, Jim Brown, Robert Duvall, Peter Coyote, Mel Gibson all played character over the years), but Parker is the first where the title character keeps the name.

The movie begins with a heist of $1,000,000 from an Ohio State Fair by Parker and a group of thieves (Michael ChiklisWendell PierceClifton Collins Jr.Micah A. Hauptman) he has never worked with before who take his cut from the job and leave him for dead on the side of the road. The rest of the film revolves around Parker following the group to Palm Beach and shadowing their latest score with the help of a local Realtor (Jennifer Lopez) before finally taking his revenge.

Monday, May 20, 2013

SubCultures - Cosplay


SubCultures takes a look at cosplay by interviewing the trio of Ginny McQueen, Shea Standefer, and Jessie Pridemore (AKA RiffleButt Cosplay) about their experiences. Definitely worth a look. (Let me also give a shout out the equally talented Scruffy Rebel for sharing the link.)

Doctor Who - The Name of The Doctor


It's been 26-and-a-half years since the name The Valeyard has been mentioned on and episode of Doctor Who. Not only does the final episode of the 50th Anniversary season mention him by name, but it strongly foreshadows his imminent return. Of course that's far from all "The Name of The Doctor" offers. We finally learn the secret of Clara (Jenna-Louise Coleman), see The Doctor's (Matt Smith) final battle with The Great Intelligence (Richard E. Grant), and take a trip to the one place no Time Lord should ever go - his grave. The second-half of Series Seven has been high on concept, if a little shaky at times in execution, but the season finale sets up some huge stories for the show's 50th Anniversary Special and beyond.

Green Hornet #2

The second issue of Mark Waid's Green Hornet focuses on the vigilante continuing to try and uncover the true identity of "The Voice," a dangerous new player intent on sabotage and damaging the United States war efforts at home by targeting docks, steel plants, and rail lines involved in the making and transporting of war material to be used overseas.

While the Green Hornet targets The Voice for moving in on his criminal empire by reminding local thugs that he owns this city, even going so far as to stage a scene of burning a cop alive before their eyes, Brit Reid uses the resources as a newspaper editor to talk with close friends and political allies to try and figure out where The Voice's true motivations lie.

Waid's take on the character continues to focus on the theatrics of the Hornet going to further and further extremes while also showcasing the power of the press and the threat from saboteurs in a world at war. Worth a look.

[Dynamite Entertainment, $3.99]

Supergirl #20

After finally allowing the pair to meet in the last issue, Supergirl #20 introduces Power Girl to Supergirl's little piece of Krypton on Earth - her hidden underwater Kryptonian Fortress of Solitude known as Sanctuary. There isn't much time for small talk however when the sentience of Sanctuary throws a shit-fit at seeing two versions of Kara and tries its best to kill the one it believes is a clone.

For an issue about an out of control computer intelligence trying to kill two young women, Supergirl #20 is a hell of a lot of fun. We get a fun moment with Supergirl calling Power Girl on her choice of a new costume as well as the growing frustration of each woman when one and then the other is targeted for extinction.

Writer Michael Allen Johnson does a great job in showcasing both similarities and differences between the Karas of different Earths while providing a thrilling and amusing issue full of stark humor and life and death stakes that costs Supergirl something precious but introduces someone even more valuable into her life. Worth a look.

[DC, $2.99]

Sunday, May 19, 2013

The Shredder will destroy you with... cuteness?


Seriously, the master of the Foot Clan has never looked so adorable as in this new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Shredder Pop! Vinyl Figure which can be yours for the low, low price of $10.

XIII - Mousetrap


With his double apparently dead, but still be haunted by the doppelganger's voice inside his head, XIII (Stuart Townsend) searches frantically for the last Tesla letter hidden somewhere on a freighter bound for China. While on-board XIII meets Chinese sailors (George ChiangOscar HsuDerek Kwan) with whom his double has made this trip to Shanghai several times before. Not only are they going to great lengths to keep something from him in the ship's hold, but they remark on "Victor's" obvious change in personality.

Nikita - Til Death Do Us Part


In the season finale Nikita (Maggie Q) is blackmailed by Amanda (Melinda Clarke) to kill the President Spencer (Michelle Nolden) or watch the man she loves die. Although she keeps her plans from the rest of the team, Birkhoff (Aaron Stanford) does some digging into why Nikita was out of contact for 22 minutes and has been acting strange since her return. This, along with a couple of obscure hints Nikita drops, leads to their discovery of the transmitter Amanda installed in their friend and her plan to kill the President.

Scandal - White Hat's Back On


In the show's Second Season finale Olivia (Kerry Washington) calls together Mellie (Bellamy Young), Cyrus (Jeff Perry), Hollis Doyle (Gregg Henry), and Fitz (Tony Goldwyn) for a secret meeting now that she knows Billy Chambers (Matt Letscher) is the mole and has access to the falsified voting evidence from Defiance, Ohio. After agreeing the main issue is not Chambers, but the memory card, Olivia rallies he troops to recover the only evidence of the rigged election which put Fitz into office. Privately, Fitz also asks Olivia to come up with a plan to get the American people to accept them as a couple and allow the President of the United States to divorce his wife and move his mistress into the White House while fighting for re-election (and it's a pretty damn good one).

Elementary - Heroine


After revealing herself to Sherlock Holmes (Jonny Lee Miller), and saving his life, Moriarty (Natalie Dormer) promises to continue hurting the detective should he further interfere with any more of her plans. With Watson (Lucy Liu) and Gregson's (Aidan Quinn) help, Holmes, still reeling from being shot and discovering The Woman is actually his arch nemesis, returns to the case he was investigating before being contacted by Moriarty - the scheme to take over a historic speakeasy and the downfall of the heads of a security firm for murder.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

The Valeyard Returns


"I said he was me. I never said he was The Doctor. My name, my real name. That is not the point. The name I chose, it's The Doctor. The name you choose it's like a promise you make. He's the one who broke the promise. He is my secret."

Elementary - The Woman


In the first-half of the show's First Season finale, the discovery that Irene Adler (Natalie Dormer) is still alive and worse the wear from years psychological torture while being held against her will, offers flashbacks beginning two years ago in London with the consulting's first meeting with "The Woman" while investigating a forgery case. Blaming both himself and Moriarty for Irene's condition, feeling the need to take care of her, and facing a tremendous blow to his ego that he never suspected Irene was still alive, Sherlock Holmes (Jonny Lee Miller) refuses to investigate the case leaving Watson (Lucy Liu) to fear for her friend while working the case with Captain Gregson (Aidan Quinn) and Detective Bell (Jon Michael Hill) without her mentor.

Shay Mitchell is true to her Self


In her interview for the latest issue of Self Magazine Pretty Little Liars star Shay Mitchell discusses her love for a $3 bottle of wine, dispensing romantic advice on Twitter, Tumblr, and Instagram, staying calm, running on the beach, her workout routine, starving herself during her modeling career, pink boxing gloves, working as a waitress in Toronto, her friendships with her fellow Liars, and her desire to be a Bond girl. You can find pics and a behind-the-scenes video from the article inside.

The Shadow #13

After enjoying several issues of writer Victor Gischler's take on the character the series brings in a new creative team with writer Chris Roberson and artist Giovanni Timpano taking over the reigns of The Shadow and introducing a new a new figure of "The Light," a mysterious shimmering woman with a knack for slicing up sinners with a pair of swords.

While investigating four seemingly unrelated murders, and calling on the help of his vast web of eyes and ears around the city, The Shadow comes upon the spectral figure about to dispense more justice. The Shadow #13 does a good job of presenting a new mystery for the character to solve (even if the back-up story strongly hints as The Light's true identity), although the comic comes to an end just as our hero meets the city's self-appointed angel of death.

It may not be quite as good as the last few issues of the series, but it's still worth a look for fans of the character. It will be interesting to see how complex The Light's motivations truly are, and how she views another "soul stained by darkness and shadow." For fans.

[Dynamite Entertainment, $3.99]

The Big Bang Theory - The Bon Voyage Reaction


In the show's Sixth Season finale both Sheldon (Jim Parsons) and Penny (Kaley Cuoco) are surprised when Leonard (Johnny Galecki) is offered an exciting job in the North Sea working with Stephen Hawking. As Sheldon attempts to discourage Leonard the rest of the group gives their friend and impromptu going away party.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Psych - Dead Air


When their favorite DJ (Brent Chapman) is murdered on the air, and the station is in jeopardy of closing down without their #1 money maker, Shawn (James Roday) and Gus (Dulé Hill) go undercover as "Santa Barbara's newest and most potent morning show" and "The Playa Gus" to find the killer. Suspects include the DJ's producer (Haig Sutherland) and former partner (Dale Wolfe), the station manager (Garcelle Beauvais), who has a little thing for Gus, and another radio personality (Dale Wilson), all of whom had motives for wanting the man dead.

Four Color Freak-Out


If you've got some free time and want to hear three nerds talk about Doctor Who, Star Trek Into Darkness, and lots and lots of comics take some time and check out the latest Four Color Freak-Out podcast.

Transformers: Regeneration One #91

In a story arc that's offered us Grimlock, Starscream, and Shockwave, and teased of the first showdown between Optimus Prime and Galvatron, the latest issue of Transformers: Regeneration One is something of a disappointment as it deals with the fallout of Scorponok's plan to release the "Warrior Gene" and turn all the Autobots into Decepticons (yeah, I know exactly how dumb that sounds).

Transformers: Regeneration One #91 primarily deals with the Autobots on Cybertron facing their own actions now that the Gene has been turned off and blaming Hot Rod's leadership for the entire misadventure, especially as he was deep inside Cyberton learning more about Primus and the primordial Transformers while this was going on.

Although the issue does have appearances by Soundwave and Prowl, and gives us the Dinobots willing to work with Hot Rod to return to the center of Cybertron in search of their fallen leader, it centers around the comic's most ridiculous storline leading to mixed results. Pass.

[IDW, $3.99]