Review - The Defenders (Netflix), Season 1

The Defenders, TV-MA, 8 Episodes - About four years ago, Marvel announced their plans to produce four series based upon street level heroes that would culminate in a crossover mini-series teaming the four heroes.  All of this would take place in the greater MCU, and all five would be distributed by Netflix.  This past Friday gave us the completion of that first phase of what has become the highly successful Marvel/Netflix partnership with the release of The Defenders.

The Defenders begins with each of the solo heroes - Daredevil (Charlie Cox), Jessica Jones (Krysten Ritter), Luke Cage (Mike Colter), and Iron Fist (Finn Jones) - dealing with issues in their own parts of New York City.  Little do they know, that they are poking their noses into different criminal activities of the same organization: The Hand (previously seen in Daredevil and Iron Fist).  Before they know it their investigations overlap and they unintentionally get in each other's way.  After some brief conflict, a …

Collected Comic Review: The Flash Rebirth Deluxe Edition Book 1

The Flash Rebirth Deluxe Edition Book 1: Collecting Flash: Rebirth (2016) #1, The Flash (2016) #1-13

I have been keeping up with a few of DC's Rebirth titles digitally over the past year (all of which I have enjoyed), but this Deluxe Edition of The Flash marks the first from DC's new line that I have picked up to add to my collection.  That is partly due to the fact that it was the first title that I wanted to grab to be released, and partly because I have really enjoyed this latest volume of Barry Allen's adventures so far.

Prior to reading the The Flash Rebirth (2016) - not to be confused with the Geoff Johns mini-series from 2009 - I had not been familiar with Joshua Williamson's work, although I did recognize the name from hearing chatter about his Image title Nailbiter (which I have yet to read).  On the other had, I was familiar with prior work of primary artist Carmine Di Giandomenico as he had co-written and illustrated the Daredevil: Battlin' Jack Murdock …

Review - Dunkirk

Dunkirk (2017), PG-13, 1hr 46min - Christopher Nolan is one of my favorite directors and I particularly enjoy war films, especially when they are based upon actual events.  So when trailers for this film first hit the internet I knew it was one that I was definitely going to see (it was even number five on my Most Anticipated Films of 2017 list earlier this year).  Dunkirk provides a look at World War II from a different point of view (i.e. not American), through Nolan's unique, non-linear presentation.

For those like myself, who are not well versed in the specifics of such historical events, here is a little context: the events shown in this film took place in 1940 after France had been invaded by Nazi Germany.  The Germans had pushed Allied forces to the point where retreating to the beaches of Dunkirk was their only option.  In doing so, the Allied troops became trapped between their shrinking perimeter and the ocean, leaving themselves open to attack from the air while awaitin…

Collected Comic Review - Daredevil: Back in Black TPB Vol. 1-4 (Soule/Garney)

Daredevil: Back in Black Vol. 1 - Chinatown - Collecting Daredevil (2016) #1-5, and material from All-New, All-Different Point One (2015) #1
Daredevil: Back in Black Vol. 2 - Supersonic - Collecting Daredevil (2016) #6-9, and Annual #1
Daredevil: Back in Black Vol. 3 - Dark Art - Collecting Daredevil (2016) #10-14
Daredevil: Back in Black Vol. 4 - Identity - Collecting Daredevil (2016) #15-20

In recent weeks, I've been asked what I think about Charles Soule's current Daredevil run.  My default answer has been that I've enjoyed it.  Unfortunately, being the huge DD fan that I am, that is not only very vague, but it could also easily be interpreted as just a biased opinion.  With the release of the fourth trade paperback volume last week, I felt that this was as good a time as any to re-read the run to this point and to elaborate (as spoiler free as possible of course) as to why I have enjoyed this run as much as I have.

The creative team of Charles Soule and primary penciller …

Review - War for the Planet of the Apes

War for the Planet of the Apes (2017), PG-13, 2h 20min - My apologies, between not getting to this movie until last Sunday, having family in town this weekend, and getting distracted by all of the SDCC news from the last couple of days, I'm just now getting around to working on my review for War for the Planet of the Apes.  War is the final installment of the reboot/prequel trilogy that began with 2011's Rise of the Planet of the Apes and continued with 2014's Dawn of the Planet of the Apes.

Quick disclaimer right up front: as this is the last part of a trilogy, the continuity is tightly tied to the two preceding films.  If you haven't seen those, be sure to make time to watch them first, otherwise the impact of this film will be severely diluted.  Also, as the name implies, there is a good bit of war related violence, particularly involving apes.  If you're an animal lover like my wife, you probably want to steer clear completely.  For everyone else, let's get…

Review - Spider-Man: Homecoming

Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017), PG-13, 133 minutes - Spider-Man: Homecoming has been a highly anticipated film ever since Tom Holland's Spider-Man made his Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) debut in last year's Captain America: Civil War when he burst onto the scene lending a hand to Iron Man's cause.  With this film we're not only getting the first solo Spider-Man film since 2014, but also the second reboot of the character on the big screen (following the Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield incarnations).  It also also marks the first co-produced film between Sony and Marvel Studios after their deal to share the character's film rights (take note Fox...cough, cough...Fantastic Four...cough, cough).

Peter Parker (Holland) is a sophomore in high school, and actually looks age appropriate this time around.  He and his best friend Ned (Jacob Batalon) are your typical smart kids and social outcasts who participate in things like band and the debate team.  Peter doesn't…

Review - Baby Driver

Baby Driver (2017), R, 113 minutes - Baby Driver is the latest film from one of my personal favorites, writer/director Edgar Wright.  Most of his previous work has fallen (primarily) into the comedy genre, but with this film he proves that he is more than capable of handling a crime/action flick.

Wright gives us the story of Baby (Ansel Elgort), a good kid with amazing skills behind the wheel who has fallen in with the wrong people and now finds himself working off debt as criminal mastermind Doc's (Kevin Spacey) getaway driver of choice.  Doc never uses the same crew twice, but continually relies on Baby as the driver for all of his heists as he has never been caught.  All of Doc's heist crew members have their own eccentricities and Baby is no exception.  He's a music lover and is constantly listening to an iPod in order to drown out the Tinnitus (ringing in his ears) caused by a childhood car accident that killed both of his parents.  He even uses music as a timing mec…