A forever in-work compendium of Marvel and DC canon immigrants. What's a canon immigrant? Go here to find out!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Spider-Verse: Newspaper Spider-Man

Last week I mentioned that Spider-Verse #1 (November 2014) featured six stories about alternate Spider-Men, and I showed you one of them. Turns out there was a second one I didn't know about:

Yes, this world is the one that belongs to still ongoing Amazing Spider-Man strip that is credited to Stan Lee and Larry Lieber (I don't know if they actually still make it or not). There are some neat things going on here, with the panels broken up into individual strips and Morlun commenting on how long it takes for anything to happen. It's been suggested that Master Weaver saves this Spider-Man because his story is still ongoing; I'm not sure if that's true, but it's an interesting story either way.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Appearance Spotlight: Star-Lord

Star-Lord has had a few different looks over the years. When he first appeared in Marvel Preview #4 (December 1975), he looked like this:

When he came back as part of "Annihilation", he looked like this:

And until around May of this year, he looked like this:

In the Guardians of the Galaxy movie, which was released August 2014, Star-Lord had a look inspired by his "Annihilation" look, but overall a pretty big departure:

Finally, in June 2014 (but cover dated August 2014), Guardians of the Galaxy #16 showed off Star-Lord's new look, which looks pretty familiar:

Monday, November 17, 2014

Spider-Verse: Hostess Spider-Man

As I've mentioned before, Hostess used to run a series of one-page ads in the 70s and 80s that featured superheroes defeating villainy with the power of Hostess snacks. Here's an example:

In Spider-Verse #1 (November 2014), there are six stories about six different Spider-Men either being killed or joining the group that will fight the killers. (You can read more about "Spider-Verse" here.) One of these stories is about the Spider-Man featured in the Hostess ads, and rather cleverly, it's a one-page story done in the style of Hostess ads.

This Spider-Man unfortunately doesn't make it, but it was nice to see him while it lasted!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

52 Shakeup: The Batmobile

As I was looking for confirmation for yesterday's post, I noticed that Batman #1 (September 2011) has a scene in the Batcave that shows a variety of vehicles. One was a batcycle, a couple were various models of batmobile, but then there was this one:

And that is clearly the batmobile from Batman and Batman Returns:

So while Batman no longer has a parking lot sized number of Batmobiles from throughout his history and across media (as seen here), at least one made it through.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Area Spotlight: Gotham City Train Terminal

In 2005's Batman Begins, Thomas Wayne and a young Bruce go for a ride on Gotham's new train system to Wayne Tower. As Thomas notes, he designed Wayne Tower to be the central hub for Gotham, so all of the train, water, and power lines run through it. This becomes important in the climax, because if a microwave emitter on one of the trains makes its way to Wayne Tower, Gotham's water system will be destroyed.

The New 52's Batman #2 (October 2011) notes that Union Station, aka the central hub for Gotham rail lines, lies beneath Wayne Tower. No word on utilities.

As noted in the article I've previously linked to about Gotham's architecture, this tower first appeared in Anton Furst's concept sketches for Batman (1989), which makes it one of the few canon immigrants to survive the New 52.

Friday, November 7, 2014

Area Spotlight: The Narrows

This is one I've had on my radar for a long time but didn't have enough proof to include...until now.

The Narrows were first introduced in Batman Begins (2005). They were the slums of Gotham, the worst part of an all-around bad city, and they were where most of the action of the movie happened. By the end of the movie, the Narrows was in rough shape, having been overtaken by escaped Arkham inmates, much of their infrastructure destroyed by the microwave emitter, and engulfed in weaponized fear toxin.

As far as I can tell, the Narrows made their comics debut in Batman: The Dark Knight #2 (October 2011) during a montage of Gotham areas being attacked by escaped Arkham inmates. Canon immigrants like locations and costumes are a lot harder to trace than characters, so this may not be the actual first appearance - and if it's not, please let me know what is. But it is at the very least an appearance, which is good enough to show that it is indeed in the comics.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Character Spotlight: Bookworm (!!!)

This is exciting, folks. Bookworm is in the DC Universe. This means that one of my Christmas wishes came true, just like one of my birthday wishes will be coming true in December. It's a great time for this blog. But who exactly is Bookworm anyway?

Bookworm was a minor villain that only appeared in two episodes of Batman, "The Bookworm Turns" and "While Gotham City Burns" (1966). He was created for the show, played by Roddy McDowall, and was basically a Riddler knockoff that focused his crimes on books. He had style, though, and somehow could even make a built-in reading light seem kind of cool.

Because of the vagaries of media rights, DC could not use anything from the show that did not originate in the comics, because anything new was owned by Fox. Some stuff sneaked through, of course, but usually in a not-very-recognizable way. For the sake of completion, I'll include a character named Bookworm who may be an example of this, but is probably just a random character who happens to share the name. Regardless, his real name is Alexander Wyvern, he's said to look like a ferret, and there's a lot of child abuse and fire in his backstory. He appeared in Huntress #7-11 (September 1989 - January 1990).

But he doesn't really matter. Who matters is Mr. Scarlett (first appearance: Gotham Academy #2, November 2014), the Gotham Academy librarian, who is 100% the real Bookworm, complete with reading light. See, not too long ago, the Batman rights got all sorted out. That's why you can finally get the series on dvd, why there is new merchandise all over the place, and why DC is currently publishing a Batman '66 comic book. But it also means that all of those original villains are fair game now, and Gotham Academy - if no one else - has decided to jump on that. I don't know the significance of the name "Mr. Scarlett", if any, but I'm sure there is one.

P.S. I'd also be remiss not to point out that Aunt Harriet is another employee of the school. Although she is a comics-first character, debuting in 1964, she is most well known from the tv show.

Monday, November 3, 2014

52 Shake-Up: Brainiac's Symbol

I first mentioned Brainiac's symbol in the DCAU Super Post, where I said this:

Brainiac’s symbol

Brainiac's head diodes were simplified into three circles in a triangle pattern for Superman: The Animated Series ("Last Son of Krypton, Part 1", 1996).  This was later loosely adapted as a special marking that indicated Brainiac 5 had upgraded to Brainiac 5.1(Legion of Super-Heroes #104, May 1998), and more strictly adapted as Brainiac 5's logo in Legion of Super-Heroes #37 (February 2008).  Later that year, it was used by Brainiac himself in Action Comics #866 (August 2008).

For a while in the New 52, it looked like the Brainiac symbol was done for, because Brainiac showed up like this:

But in the teaser for DC's new event "Convergence", it shows up in full force, right on his chest. Now, whether this is the same Brainiac or an alternate one remains to be seen; nevertheless, there is a Brainiac that still uses the symbol: