DC Comics' New 52 - Animal Man Sneak Preview - Dread Central
Connect with us

DC Comics’ New 52 – Animal Man Sneak Preview

Published

on

Post Thumb:

/aug11/animal.jpg

If your life takes you anywhere near the humming geek media machine found at the center of the internet, then you’ve heard about DC Comics preparing to shake up their universe. Horror fans are no strangers to the re-boot; and this is exactly what DC is after.

A lengthy struggle with low sales numbers paved the way to a total revamp of their comic kingdom, beginning with the release of 52 comics re-introducing some of the most well known characters on the planet with little details changed for a world that demands more gritty reality from their men in tights (or so they say.) Today, we get a look at one comic hero you wouldn’t normally think of as one that would peak the interest of a gore-hound. His name is Animal Man, gifted with the power to tap into the “Life Web“, allowing him to take on the abilities of any animal on the planet. This seems silly at first, until you give some thought to the power in a man with the toughness of a rhino, strength of an elephant, speed of a cheetah and agility of a monkey … all at once. Now, DC takes Buddy Baker (with his awesomely cheesy DC name) into a darker place. Here’s the outline …

Basically we start with Buddy’s best days as a superhero behind him. But, Buddy has found a bit of a second life. His past exploits, his politics and his involvement in various animal rights groups have made him something of a hipster icon. The young, left wing college crowd has latched onto the image of Animal Man as if he were something of an indie/alt icon of the 90’s. Unfortunately, that really isn’t helping to pay the bills.

As our series opens Buddy is actually reading an interview he did in a “Believer-type” magazine at the kitchen table as Ellen makes diner (the first page of the first issue is actually an excerpt from this interview, complete with the little illustrated headshot of Buddy, which catches readers up on Buddy’s recent past and his lessening involvement in super heroics, and his re-emergence within youth culture). There is clearly stress in their marriage. Buddy is doing little to help make ends meet and Ellen’s career as an illustrator is drying up.

We establish their quiet suburban life and routine and reintroduce readers to their three kids: Cliff, is now fourteen, anti-social and rebellious. Maxine is an introverted and shy ten-year old, and four-year old Josie is clearly the apple of Buddy’s eye.

As our story begins, Maxine begins to develop powers of her own. Buddy tries his best to help Maxine, but instead he accidentally sets into motion an ancient evil that will send The Baker family on the run across the dark and dangerous underbelly of modern America and right into the hands of [CLASSIFIED]. And there may be only one being who can save them … Alec Holland.

You don’t have to be a comic fan to recognize the name Alec Holland as the man who would become Swamp Thing in the 1982 film! In current comics, writers have separated the Swamp Thing entity from the man Alec Holland, so there’s no telling what this reveal means for the book. What I can tell you is this reveal must come later, as it has no bearing on the first issue of Animal Man. The premiere issue sees Buddy Baker donning his super hero duds to assist the police with a man endangering the lives of people at a local hospital. At first, you are to believe the event is resolved without incident. Animal Man puts himself in the line of fire and comes out the hero. It’s a text book happy ending…at least it would be if it weren’t for that “bleeding from the eyes” thing. Is this the stress of activating his powers after some extended down time or a portent of some oncoming evil? The mystery is expanded in Buddy’s dreams where his tiny daughter is exhibiting some disturbingly violent traits.

The story and its flow remind me of what little Neil Gaiman I have read with striking visuals played against a humdrum existence, making the moment that much more jarring. You’ll also agree that the concept of a tiny, little girl potentially wielding powers making her capable of horrific acts while her face maintains an air of innocence is extremely compelling. As DC’s outline teases, the emergence of these powers sends the family running, perhaps to save the child … or to spare those around her. Buddy has been tapping into these powers his whole life, but can his influence keep his daughter on the path of good while some insidious, supernatural force is obviously drawing her in? This is absolutely a comic I’ll be chomping at the bit to read monthly!! The first issue builds suspense like a top notch horror film and pays off with imagery in the closing pages ranging from the macabre to the downright monstrous. This one’s a keeper.

For horror fans, DC Comics’ new 52 also includes the following titles that should be of interest:

Swamp Thing: Written by SCOTT SNYDER (American Vampire!) & Art and cover by YANICK PAQUETTE
One of the world’s most iconic characters has returned to the heart of the DC Universe, and every step he takes will shake the foundations of the Earth! Alec Holland has his life back…but the Green has plans for it. A monstrous evil is rising in the desert, and it’ll take a monster of another kind to defend life as we know it! (September 7th)

Frankenstein, Agent of S.H.A.D.E.: Written by JEFF LEMIRE, Art by ALBERTO PONTICELLI & Cover by J.G. JONES
It’s Frankenstein as you’ve never seen him before, in a dark new series from acclaimed writer Jeff Lemire (SWEET TOOTH) and artist Alberto Ponticelli (UNKNOWN SOLDIER)! Frankenstein is part of a network of strange beings who work for an even stranger government organization: The Super Human Advanced Defense Executive! But can he protect the world from threats even more horrifying than himself? And since he’s vilified for who and what he is, will he even want to take on this mission? (September 14th)

Red Lanterns: Written by PETER MILLIGAN, Art and cover by ED BENES and ROB HUNTER
Atrocitus and his Red Lantern Corps return in their own series, battling against injustice in the most bloody ways imaginable! Basically, you’ve got super powered aliens powered by rage, seeking justice and spitting acid blood. SOLD! (September 14th)

Ressurrection Man: Written by DAN ABNETT and ANDY LANNING, Art by FERNANDO DAGNINO, Cover by IVAN REIS and JOE PRADO
It’s the return of Mitch Shelly – and he’s still dead. Resurrection Man can’t stay dead for long, though – and with each rebirth comes new and unexpected powers. But his many returns have not gone unnoticed, and forces are gathering to learn what’s so special about him – and to see which of them will finally stop Resurrection Man dead. (September 14th)

I, Vampire: Written by JOSHUA HALE FIALKOV, Art by ANDREA SORRENTINO & Cover by JENNY FRISON
For hundreds of years, vampire Andrew Stanton kept mankind safe from the horrors of the supernatural world, thanks to a truce he made with his ex-lover Mary, the Queen of the Damned. But now that truce has reached a bloody end and Andrew must do everything in his power to stop Mary and her dark forces from going on a killing spree – and she plans to start with the heroes of the DCU! (Those that read Marvel Comics are groaning right now, having just endured a vampire onslaught in the X books.) (September 28th)

Justice League Dark: Written by PETER MILLIGAN, Art by MIKEL JANIN & Cover by RYAN SOOK
The witch known as The Enchantress has gone mad, unleashing forces that not even the combined powers of Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman and Cyborg can stop. And if those heroes can’t handle the job, who will stand against this mystical madness? Shade the Changing Man, Madame Xanadu, Deadman, Zatanna and John Constantine may be our only hope – but how can we put our trust in beings whose very presence makes ordinary people break out in a cold sweat? (September 28th)

DC Universe Presents: Written by PAUL JENKINS, Art by BERNARD CHANG & Cover by RYAN SOOK
It’s the start of a new series spotlighting some of the DC Universes’s most exciting super heroes! First up is Deadman, straight from the pages of BRIGHTEST DAY, in a five-issue epic where the body-hopping hero meets his match in a new foe who wants to make sure the souls that Deadman helps out go straight to Hell! (September 21st)

NOTE: Scott Snyder is also writing Batman, in case you’d like to pick up everything the man is writing.

Animal Man drops September 7th at a comic shop near you and digitally through those offering them (which is a lot of people so I didn’t want to list them all!)

VISIT THE EVILSHOP @ AMAZON!
Got news? Click here to submit it!
Be an animal in the comments section below.

Image Type 1:

Comments

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Comments

News

Masters of the Universe Reboot Snags New Director(s)

Published

on

Four months ago we let you guys know that David S. Goyer was going to be directing the upcoming big-budget reboot of Masters of the Universe… but he has since dropped out of the director’s chair.

That said, Sony still views the He-Man property as a hot commodity and hopes this reboot will kick off a major new franchise, so today we have news via Variety that the reboot has snagged new directors in the form of The Nee Brothers.

The brothers co-directed the indie-thriller Band of Robbers. And while Goyer passed on directing the film, he’s still attached as writer/executive producer, and sources say he’s still extremely involved in the film’s development.

Are you excited for the upcoming reboot of Masters of the Universe? Let us know what you think in the comments below or on Facebook, Twitter, and/or Instagram!

The reboot is set to hit theaters December 18th, 2019.

Rundown:

Based on the beloved Mattel toy line, which spawned a successful animated TV series (1983-85) as well as a 1987 film. The property centers on the warrior He-Man, the last hope of a magical land called Eternia. Dolph Lundgren starred in the original pic as the title character, while Frank Langella played the villainous Skeletor.

Comments

Continue Reading

Editorials

Here’s Why We Suspect Jason Voorhees is a Pot Farmer

Published

on

I’m not a Rastafarian or a Dead Head, but I still consider April 20th (4/20) a bona fide counter-cultural holiday worthy of celebration. The date has become synonymous with marijuana and coincides with concerts, “smoke-outs”, and even academic retrospectives worldwide. Indeed, societal mores have softened since the paranoid days of Reefer Madness, making “The Devil’s Herb” an appropriate topic for exploration.

In the spirit of 4/20, I’m highlighting a theory I’ve been considering over the past few years, one that connects the scourge of Camp Crystal Lake to a large-scale guerilla grow operation. It’s my assertion that Jason Voorhees is a pot farmer.

Jason’s relationship with marijuana (and those who partake) seems contrary to this theory, as stoners in Friday the 13th movies almost inevitably meet with the business end of a machete. There seems to be a moralistic agenda at play, one that punishes those who participate in illegal consumption of drugs—especially when they should be watching young campers who might be drowning in the lake.

This seems to be the case in the 2009 reboot, as well. Directed by Marcus Nispel from a script penned by Damian Shannon and Mark Swift, Jason makes short work of several eager weed tokers (among others). This specific chapter of the Friday franchise, however, breaks with tradition in several ways; one could be Jason’s relationship with marijuana.

I invite all Friday fans and 4/20 enthusiasts to take this challenge: Re-watch 2009’s Friday the 13th accepting the premise that Jason is a weed farmer. As outlandish as it may sound at first, everything falls into place with surprising validity. Let’s review:

The opening act of Friday the 13th sees a group of hikers looking for a rumored field of marijuana, somewhere in the vicinity of Camp Crystal Lake. They tromp noisily through the woods, making them easy for Jason to notice. But he doesn’t make his first kill until a camper stumbles into the weed patch. If we accept that this is Jason’s crop, we see he only resorts to murder when someone’s caught in the act of theft. Jason’s decision to kill the rest of the campers (except for Whitney) may certainly have been an over-reaction, but he could have been acting under the assumption that they were all a potential threat to his business. The world of drugs can be ruthless after all.

The Carnage Begins

Related Article: 4/20 Massacre Review – Puff, Puff, Slash!

The next obvious question involves how the following group of victims ran afoul of Jason; while the film’s main batch of horny teen definitely includes stoners, none of them invaded the Voorhees “farm”. If Jason’s only motivation is protecting his crop from interlopers, why hack and slash the rich kids at the cabin? It all comes back to weed.

After the First Act, Jason’s next victim is the redneck working on a machine in the dilapidated barn. Immediately preceding his dispatch, he offers to sell Jenna and Clay some weed, some really good stuff that he claims he “found”. He’s obviously another thief (at least in Jason’s mind) which is why he was slaughtered. The fact that Clay and Jenna were seen with the marijuana burglar, unfortunately, made them guilty by association.

Jason’s not the sharpest tool in the shed but still, we can understand how he assumed these new arrivals were all after his crop (which was obviously just about ready to harvest). The kids wakeboarding on the lake: They had to go. Everyone else associated with Jenna: Assumed intruders who needed to be dealt with accordingly. Again, I agree Jason’s actions are extreme, but those operating guerilla grow operations aren’t your stereotypical happy hippies; even in real life, those attempting to infiltrate secret fields are likely to face physical danger.

So who are Jason’s clients? They obviously aren’t the tourists who briefly come and go. I propose they’re the elderly residents of Crystal Lake County: The woman who warned Clay “He just wants to be left alone,” for example. And the old man with the oxygen mask who almost rescued one of the teens: As soon as he saw Jason was on his trail, he sped off. This wasn’t because he was scared, necessarily; rather, he realized it was “business related”. Jason clearly supplied this fellow with marijuana to alleviate the pain of his lung cancer. The unseen, bedridden owner of the farm where Jason killed the redneck is also a client.

“Stay away from my crops.”

When you look at the life Jason lives in 2009’s Friday the 13th, you realize a source of income is necessary. Since he probably doesn’t deal with money, Jason most-likely barters with his customers. That’s how he has gasoline in his generator, light bulbs in his lair, food on his table, and how he landed that wicked machete sharpener.

Furthermore, Jason’s entire underground labyrinth wasn’t revealed and he certainly has enough room for an entire grow operation. The tunnels and rooms were surprisingly dry, making them the perfect place to dry and cure freshly-cultivated crops. Once dried and sealed, he could store stashes in a variety of locations. He could make clones, hybrids, and cultivate seeds in the offseason.

And while Jason would probably benefit from the calming, medicinal qualities of marijuana, he abides by the rules laid out by N.W.A in 1986: A dope man never gets high off his own supply.

I hope Shannon and Swift will be brave enough to one day reveal the truth. In the meantime, raise a bong to Mrs. Voorhees’ Baby Boy! And remember if you stumble across a wild marijuana field while hiking, leave that shit alone!

Happy 4/20!

Comments

Continue Reading

Dread Central Presents

Interview: Imitation Girl Star Lauren Ashley Carter

Published

on

The Dread Central Presents title Imitation Girl is now available on VOD, and in preparation for its theatrical screening series (click here for theaters!), we were fortunate to sit down with indie starlet Lauren Ashley Carter to chat about her career, Imitation Girl, and working with female directors.

Here’s the film’s synopsis: “When an alien takes the form of an adult film star, both must learn to cope with the complexities of being human in this mesmerizing directorial debut from Natasha Kermani, with Lauren Ashley Carter (Darling) in the dual role of Julianna and the imitation girl.

Directed by Natasha Kermani, Imitation Girl stars Lauren Ashley Carter, Neimah Djourabchi, Adam David Thompson, and Catherine Mary Stewart.


Dread Central: Thank you so much for taking the time to talk with us. We’re very excited to release Imitation Girl. The performances you’ve given even within the world of independent horror have been vast and versatile. What sort of roles do you find you enjoy playing the most?

Lauren Ashley Carter: I choose the roles that appeal to me at the time, so obviously this changes as I get older. They’ve got to be different, otherwise I feel like I’m cheating myself and audiences. I enjoy characters that have to discover the world before they can be in it. I’ve yet to play a character that knows more than the audience. Maybe that’s next…

DC: Horror fans predominately know you as an actress, but you’ve also created your own short films and web series (and that Jackie Chan audiobook!) How do you determine the stories you want to tell as a creator compared to the roles you choose to play?

LAC: I have always been a creator first. I began writing plays when I was about six or seven years old and asking my classmates to act in them. I was appalled by some of the performances, to be honest, and fired a couple of my actors, stepped in and took on the roles myself. 

When I was living in NYC, most of the auditions I was going out for were for obnoxious characters: leaky robots that cried in a court house, and badly written, or under written, guest roles on TV shows. Others were for indie films that had no plot, other than awkward living room chats and uncomfortable sex scenes. And then commercial auditions where I’m standing next to some gorgeous 5’10” print model having to amuse a casting director with an anecdote about my breakfast. 

Rejection never bothered me, but the boredom and repetition of memorizing crap text drove me fucking bonkers. So, I started to create again. It’s so important to keep your mind fresh and to always have access to your imagination. It’s easy to lose that, and to let your mind atrophy, hustling to pay your bills and memorizing so much garbage. Creating new work is the best way to keep your imagination alive. Even if it doesn’t amount to dollar signs, even if it turns out to be more garbage-y than the garbage you were shitting on, it is rewarding, and it can tell you a lot about yourself. 

I like to tell stories about the world I see, and hopefully make people laugh when they look at it through my eyes. Comedy, my own sense of humor and the sense of humor of those closest to me, and also comedy content, got me through the toughest of times. I try to keep it light and have a sense of humor about the darkness because I don’t want to get sucked into the nothingness that’s on the other side. 

DC: In Imitation Girl, you play a character that works as an amateur porn star. Given the stigmas attached to sex workers, what drew you to this character?

LAC: I knew quite a few exotic dancers growing up. The least interesting thing about them was that they were exotic dancers. They were all extremely layered women, many of them hurt, drug addicts, mothers, caretakers, enthusiastic, volatile. They are so often reduced to their occupations. I’ve since worked on another project, specifically about a sex worker, and it’s a world that I want to explore more. Porn stars, amateur porn actors, cam girls, working girls, dancers- these are all occupations that I think a lot of us have thought about, maybe even tried for a time. The events that lead women to these jobs, whether they remain long term or not, all of this interests me. The stories of these women’s lives are so much richer than their job descriptions. And maybe if we know their stories, we will see them as flesh and blood. 

DC: I actually really hate this question, but the unfortunate reality is that there are so many people that don’t have any insight to how films are actually made. How do you feel working on set with a male director compared to a female director?

LAC: From person to person, as we know, we aren’t that much different. We have more in common than we don’t. The biggest difference I notice in the male/female dynamic is in numbers. When there are more women on a crew, or more female producers, things feel more calm, work gets done efficiently and without panic. I’m talking about my crews, I guess, because I can’t think of a time this has ever happened otherwise. We get compliments after about how much fun everyone had, how stress-free it was, and how they’d love to be back on set with us. 

I’ve only worked with one female film director, Natasha Kermani (on Imitation Girl), and she’s brilliant because she knows so much about every department. And I’ve worked with men that are absolutely wonderful, intuitive, caring, sympathetic, patient. Conversely, I’ve worked with men that are careless, destructive, arrogant, and downright sociopathic. So, the jury is out on the stats of all of this…but wouldn’t it be nice if we had the opportunity to know! What I’m saying is, there aren’t enough female directors working. 

DC: I couldn’t agree with you more. Last question, something fun. If you had the opportunity to play an iconic horror character in a remake, what character would you play and why?

LAC: Well, I would never want to step into the shoes of an icon, that’s exactly how you twist an ankle and fall on your face, BJ. But if I must, then I’d love to take on Quint from Jaws. That’s pretty much my personality after a bottle of wine, anyway. Just throw me on a boat and roll the cameras. 

Lauren Ashely Carter is also the curator for the March edition of Box of Dread! There are only a few unclaimed boxes at the time we are writing these words so sign up now before they sell out and are gone forever! Reserve your subscription by clicking here.

For even more pictures and videos, check out Box of Dread on social media! If you have any questions or concerns, always feel free to contact us at support@boxofdread.com, and we’ll do whatever we can to make things all right in your horror-loving world.

Comments

Continue Reading

Go Ad Free!

Support Dread Central on Patreon!
Advertisement
Advertisement

Recent Comments

Advertisement

Join the Box of Dread Mailing List

* indicates required

Trending

Copyright © 2017 Dread Central Media LLC