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The Lizard? Morbius the Living Vampire? I did not know about this issue when I posted last week (See: Four Possible Amazing Spider-Man 2 Villains), but in terms of villains/allies both the Lizard and Morbius work well together as both have tragic origins routed in science. Written by Dan Slott with art by Giuseppe Camuncoli and covers by Camuncoli and J Scott Campbell. I’m not too surprised to see the Lizard return around the release of the Amazing Spider-Man, which features Rhys Ifans as Curt Connors/the Lizard- not the first time we’ve seen Connors on the big screen, but this will be the first appearance by the Lizard in a movie adaptation.

Official description: Spider-Man, Peter Parker, Curt Connors, and the Lizard. The stars of this summer’s big blockbuster movie are right here! Morbius the Living Vampire is on the loose and no one at Horizon Labs is safe–including a recently cured Curt Connors. But if Curt Connors is cured, who or what is that new Lizard creature? It’s definitely someone Spider-Man knows!

I’m excited to see Morbius mixing it up with Spider-Man again, could this lead to a future movie appearance? And who could the mysterious new Lizard be? The issue hits stands on July 5th. On July 3rd, we get the release of the Amazing Spider-Man starring Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone! Excited? Ready to be amazed?

Okay, I know what you are thinking… The Amazing Spider-Man hasn’t even come out in theaters yet, so why are we thinking ahead to the next one? Well, simply put, we know that there will be a next one and it is fun to play the guessing game as to who might be in it (assuming that they aren’t in the first flick of the rebooted series). I have stayed away from spoilers and our spotlight (Film Spotlight: The Amazing Spider-man) is the extent of my knowledge of the new film. The Lizard appears to be the only villain getting the spotlight in commercials, but we know that Oscorp plays a hand, so how far can Norman Osborn (aka the Green Goblin) truly be? In this list I’ll also be staying away from villains I thought/hoped would be apart of Spider-Man 4, which turned into The Amazing Spider-Man (hey, I was right on the money with the Lizard).

Lets start with a less likely possibility, Mysterio. He is one of Spider-Man’s oldest villains, having first  appeared in Amazing Spider-Man #13 in 1964. While many different people have donned the fishbowl, the original and best Mysterio was Quentin Beck, a failed special effects artist who uses parlor tricks and illusions to try and drive Spider-Man mad. Visually his costume is a bit cheesy and would need a big time movie makeover, but his “powers” could be pretty visually amazing (pun intended) in 3D and on the big screen. Plus, using him in even a smaller role in the sequel could be a nice early set up for bringing together the Sinister Six in a future movie (whose to say Spider-Man can’t face multiple villains over the course of the movie while dealing with a bigger threat– one villain at a time seems too easy on the hero).

How about the Scorpion? He appeared a couple issues after Mysterio in 1965. J Jonah Jameson (is he even in Amazing Spider-Man?) was responsible for this villain’s creation. He paid Mac Gargan to be apart of an experimental animal mutation therapy, which granted him with enhanced speed, strength and endurance, but had a side effect of driving him mad. He wears a (of course) scorpion based costume with a long stinger. Just like Mysterio it might be hard to make him a central villain, but who is to say he can’t work for Jameson- who in his quest to rid the city of the masked menace that is Spider-Man sets a few different villains loose. Only realizing what he has done too late. More recently Gargan took over the mantle of Venom during Marvel’s “Dark Reign”.

The living vampire Morbius! Hey, vampires are all the rage, right? Well, here is a way to have a vampire styled character but not have the need to incorperate the supernatural into the world of Spider-Man. Dr Michael Morbius attempts to cure his rare blood disease by testing an experimental treatment that uses vampire bats and electroshock therapy on himself. The result is that he turns himself into a horrible looking vampire like creature who needs to digest blood to survive. “Side effects” include the power of flight, super strength and a quick healing ability. Morbius and Spider-Men fighting through NYC at night would be quite breathtaking. His story would also be strong enough to focus a whole film on. The only problem is that his backstory might be a bit too similar to the Lizard’s origin (both are doctors trying to “cure” something about themselves). Morbius has a better handle and is a more outspoken villain than the Lizard.

Okay, now don’t get me wrong, I can totally understand why Marvel/Sony/Marc Webb would want to stay away from rehashing any of Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man movies by reusing villains like the Green Goblin. But there is a way around that! Who wouldn’t love to see the Hobgoblin on the big screen? Instead of having Norman Osborn accidentally become the Green Goblin after the goblin serum drives him insane, lets have a man who purposely turns himself into a “goblin” villain to become a successful villain.  Sure, there have been a half dozen Hobgoblins, but that works towards the filmmaker’s advantage as it would be a lot harder to piss off fans even if you make big changes to the person behind the mask. Roderick Kingsley could be an Osborn employee who uses the serum on himself to get all of the abilities, but then messes with it so the next person that takes it is driven insane (Norman Osborn). This could lead to a pretty cool climax with Spider-Man stuck in the middle of an epic fight between the Green Goblin and the Hobgoblin.

Are you excited for The Amazing Spider-Man? What villains would you like to show up in future sequels? Who would you like to portray them?

With The Avengers movie ruling the box office, it is no surprise that a new video game is on the way from Marvel and Ubisoft for Xbox 360 Kinect and Nintendo’s Wii U. The game, Avengers: Battle for Earth is based on the popular “Secret Invasion” storyline which saw the alien Skrulls invade earth while impersonating various Marvel heroes causing The Avengers to not know who they could trust.

The game will feature more than 20 characters. So far they have announced Black Widow, Captain America, Hawkeye, Hulk, Iron Man, Magneto, Spider-Man, Storm, Thor, Wolverine and Venom being in the mix. Each of the playable heroes and villains are equipped with four unique powers that you use different movements to trigger the attacks. Game modes include campaign, co-op, arcade, challenges, versus, and tournament. As you can see in the picture above, the game is done in a cartoony style inspired b the actual “Secret Invasion” storyline.

Official description: The Skrulls have landed and now it is up to you to embody your favorite Marvel super heroes and defeat epic enemies during the Secret Invasion. Unleash your inner superhero in Marvel Avengers: Battle for Earth!.

You can watch the game’s trailer here.

Release Date: July 3, 2012
Studio: Sony
Director: Marc Webb (500 Days of Summer)
Starring: Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Martin Sheen, Sally Field, Denis Leary and Rhys Ifans.
Plot: Peter Parker, an outcast high schooler who was abandoned by his parents as a boy, leaving him to be raised by his Uncle Ben and Aunt May. Like most teenagers, Peter is trying to figure out who he is and how he got to be the person he is today. Peter is also finding his way with his first high school crush, Gwen Stacy, and together, they struggle with love, commitment, and secrets.

As Peter discovers a mysterious briefcase that belonged to his father, he begins a quest to understand his parents’ disappearance — leading him directly to Oscorp and the lab of Dr. Curt Connors, his father’s former partner. As Spider-Man is set on a collision course with Connors’ alter-ego, The Lizard, Peter will make life-altering choices to use his powers and shape his destiny to become a hero.

Thoughts: When Sony first announced they were abandoning Spider-Man 4 and rebooting the series (so soon after the last flick int he series) I was pissed off. As off the mark as 3 was, I still wanted to see that series continue and get a proper ending. Or in the very least a better ending that it did get. But no, Sony didn’t want to fight to keep Sam Raimi on the project and instead we would get a reboot by the director of 500 Days of Summer, a great movie but by no means a movie that screams “I’m ready to direct Spider-Man!”

Months and months later and we only a few weeks from The Amazing Spider-Man coming out, and I have to admit, I’m really looking forward to it. The cast lives up to the title and really is amazing. Andrew Garfield looks spot on as Peter Parker (much better than Tobey Maguire ever did) and Emma Stone as Gwen Stacey is inspired casting. Bringing it back to High School, a setting that Raimi jumped over for no good reason, was a great idea. The footage looks great and I’ve stayed away from spoilers, so I will genuinely be going in not knowing much and will be ready to be surprised.

It seems like every couple years we get an all new animated Spider-Man series. I grew up (and was introduced to the webslinger with Spider-Man: The Animated Series, and before I was born there was the very cheesy but loveable Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends. In the years since Sam Raimi’s first Spider-Man movie we’ve had a decent short lived CG animated series from MTV and The Spectacular Spider-Man. which was geared towards very young children. Now we’ll be getting an adaptation of Brian Michael Bendis’ long running Ultimate Spider-Man series for Disney XD.

Set in high school, the series was a fresh (and updated for the times) look at Spider-Man’s origin and early years. Villains were reintroduced, sometimes with a twist (Spider-Man’s father helped create Venom) and things were a lot more straight forward (Bendis did not have to worry about decades of continuity).  I’m actually surprised that the series hasn’t been brought to the small screen yet, and I think it is ripe for the screen. I skipped Spectacular, but I might just give this series a chance.

The official synopsis:

This animated series from Marvel follows Peter Parker who, as the storyline begins, has been Spider-Man for just one year. He’s fought villains, saved lives, but still has much to learn about being a super-hero. Now, Nick Fury gives Peter the chance to go to the next level — to train to be a real super-hero and become The Ultimate Spider-Man. But before he can do that, Peter will have to learn how to work with a team of fellow teenage super-heroes.

The series will be paired with The Mighty Avengers for a Marvel Comics hour of animated shows!

This past week, Ricky Gervais let it slip that he will be returning to The Office in the season’s final episode, reprising his role of David Brent from the original UK series. He appeared earlier this season in a blink and you’d miss it encounter with Steve Carell’s Michael Scott.  Also guest starring in the hour long season finale is Arrested Development‘s Will Arnett, who Gervais has spoken about wanting to get to fill Carell’s large shoes in the past. Could Arnett be joining the show full time for its 8th season? Or could they be distracting us with Arnett and are really just slipping Gervais into the role he knows so well? We will not know for sure until the end of the season. In the meantime we should just enjoy Carell’s final episodes (the last of which will be in the final week of April).

TV News Blurbs…

TNT has renewed Southland for ten more episodes. Ben McKenzie, Shawn Hatosy and Regina King are all returning for the show’s forth season. The network has also ordered ten episodes of a new crime drama, Perception, which stars Eric McCormack and Rachael Leigh Cook. In the new series, McCormack is an eccentric neuroscientist who uses his unique skills to help the FBI solve crimes.

NBC has finally announced the premiere of The Paul Reiser Show. The new show from the Mad About You star focuses on Reiser as a fictional version of himself as he struggles with life after having a successful TV series and tries to get along with a new group of “friends” – the parents of his kids and his wife’s friend’s husbands. The show shot their pilot in a park that is walking distance to my home, so I’m really interested to see how they used the location and I love supporting stuff that shoots nearby (shout out to Parks and Rec also!)


Phew, all of that writing (and news reporting) really makes me want to take a break. I think it is time that I take a vacation to a nice holiday park for the weekend. Don’t you need a break too?

Posted on March 22nd, 2011 by ThePit | Comments Off on TV News: Spider-Man Gets Animated, The Office & More!
Filed Under Entertainment

This April the Marvel Comics universe is going to learn the true meaning of FEAR with their upcoming crossover “Fear Itself”. Of course that means a new main limited series plus endless offshoots. Here are the official blurbs to the first round of “Fear Itself” books (not included tie ins running through other Marvel comics).

FEAR ITSELF #1
DO YOU FEAR…TOMORROW? In this time of global anxiety, of economic turmoil and mass hysteria, Sin, the new Red Skull, has made an awesome discovery…a shameful secret that will rock the foundations of the Marvel Universe! A revelation that will divide father and son, turn friend against friend, and herald the rise of Fear personified. HE IS RETURNING…and the world has nothing to fear but FEAR ITSELF. Matt Fraction and Stuart Immonen bring fans the biggest Marvel the biggest Marvel event since CIVIL WAR!

FEAR ITSELF: THE HOME FRONT #1
Terror has gripped the globe and now all the world is the front line for the next superhuman conflict! America blamed Speedball for the deaths of six hundred people in Stamford, Connecticut – the event that sparked the super hero Civil War. And while some have forgiven him, he hasn’t forgiven himself. But a new crisis has arisen – fear is spreading throughout the populace – and, while doing charity work in disguise, Robbie Baldwin’s true identity is exposed to the people of Stamford. With the world falling apart around him, can Speedball rally the population against the new danger – or will this survivor of an old war be the casualty of a new one? PLUS: Marvel’s super agent Jimmy Woo confronts his deepest fears in an all-new, all-action adventure! Join the fight as Marvel’s top talents take you on a series of globe-spanning adventures that will test the mettle of hero, citizen and villain alike!

FEAR ITSELF: SIN’S PAST #1
DO YOU FEAR…TOMORROW? In this time of global anxiety, of economic turmoil and mass hysteria, Sin, the new Red Skull, has made an awesome discovery…a shameful secret that will rock the foundations of the Marvel Universe! A revelation that will divide father and son, turn friend against friend, and herald the rise of Fear personified. HE IS RETURNING…and the world has nothing to fear but FEAR ITSELF. Matt Fraction and Stuart Immonen bring fans the biggest Marvel the biggest Marvel event since CIVIL WAR!

FEAR ITSELF SPOTLIGHT
The only thing you have to fear is – FEAR ITSELF! Starting in April, Marvel lifts the lid on a plot that might undo the Heroic Age just as it’s getting started — with a universe-shattering attack from an unexpected quarter! In this issue of SPOTLIGHT, we dig deep with the creators behind FEAR ITSELF, including Matt Fraction (THOR, UNCANNY X-MEN) and Stuart Immonen (NEW AVENGERS) as they provide insight into the main event and the characters most affected by it! Plus: Take a look back at some of Marvel’s biggest blockbusters through the years – from old-school epics like the Avengers/Defenders War and SECRET WARS to contemporary crossovers like CIVIL WAR and SIEGE!

Posted on February 5th, 2011 by ThePit | Comments Off on Preview: Fear Itself #1
Filed Under Entertainment

An all new week has begun, welcome to The Pit!

  • The first season of The Walking Dead has already ended! It feels like it had just begun… well, it had. The short six episode season pulled a lot from the comic and did a lot right. The season finale took a big diversion from the comic and tried to offer the audience and characters some explanation about how the zombies rise. It also did something that the comic never did by showing us a flashback of what happened to Rick in the hospital. Have you enjoyed the first season? Looking forward to more?
  • Campbell Scott and Julianne Nicholson have joined the new Spider-Man movie as Peter Parker’s parents, In the main Marvel Comic comic they were revealed to be spies before their death, while in Ultimate Spider-Man Peter’s father was a scientist that helped develop the Venom symbiote. It will be interesting to see if they are seen in flashbacks, or if we’ll see Peter as a young child before their death. It might be a bit much to have them die and Martin Sheen’s Uncle Ben also die.  Irrfan Khan and Annie Parisse have also joined the movie as a villain and his wife. Khan’s character is Nels Van Adder, an Oscorp employee who is used as a test subject by Norman Osborn when he is testing his Goblin formula. The incomplete formula turns Adder into a red goblin like monster. Does this mean that Norman Osborn will be in the new film? Sure seems like it. This seems to point a little towards the reboot following Ultimate Spider-Man. I just wish Mary Jane was gonna be in the movie.
  • Hawkman, Stargirl, and Black Canary return in this Friday’s Smallville! We had Aquaman two episodes ago, Lionel in the last episode and before the season ends we’ll have Booster Gold, Blue Beetle, and other DC Comics characters. I think this has easily been the best season of Smallville. It is a shame that it is its last.
  • Looking for a good Holiday gift? You should think about getting wine delivery for friends. It makes an awesome gift.
Posted on December 6th, 2010 by ThePit | Comments Off on The Pit: Walking Dead, Spider-Man, & More!
Filed Under Entertainment
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