Thor: Ragnarok comes out on November third in the U.S. This movie promises Chris Hemsworth and Mark Ruffalo reprising their roles, but another classic Thor character is joining the mix as well. Cate Blanchett, famous for her portrayal of Galadriel in Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings Trilogy, will become Hela, the goddess of death.
Hela: Goddess of the dead
In the original Norse mythology, Hel was a being who presided over a realm of the same name and received a portion of the undead, yet was not allowed to rule the honored dead. She ruled Hel and Niflheim. Niflheim is where the dishonored dead are sent, whereas Hel contains souls neither specially honored nor dishonored. The final place of eternal rest was Valhalla, the place of the victorious or courageous dead. In the Marvel universe, Hela is Loki’s daughter (more on that in a bit), who looks to expand her influence to Valhalla, usually through open conflict with Odin and Thor.
Hela, is not the current Loki’s daughter. Yes, it is confusing. The idea of Ragnarok is one of cycles and incarnations—she is the daughter of a previous incarnation of Loki. When she came of age (unsure how one can survive the entire rewriting of the universe) Odin appointed her goddess of two of the three realms of the dead. As a result she ended up turning into a villain powerful enough to not only kill Thor, but Odin as well.
In addition, her parenthood may give us a clue as to her part in the new movie. As she is from a previous cycle of Ragnarok, she may be aware of its implications. She could have a desire to bring it about, prevent it, or simply survive. Either one of those, or she could also look to expand her power over Valhalla and Asgard. We will know it due time.
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Some interesting Superhero movie news abound this week! With Phase three of the Marvel Cinematic Universe beginning in May of 2016 with Captain America: Civil War, we’re being drop-fed bits and pieces of other movies, including Gambit, Guardians of the Galaxy 2, Batman v Superman, and Thor: Ragnarok.
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is prepared to be one of next year’s biggest films. Coming out on March 25, the movie pits DC’s biggest names against each other, with a healthy dose of extras: Wonder Woman, Aquaman, Lex Luthor, and more. Such a huge production usually ends up with a lot of extra film, which producer Charles Roven said could end up in an extended edition of the film: “I don’t know if you’ll ever get the 4-hour version, but there may be something that’s coming along that might be slightly less long than that.”
Less happy news from the Marvel side: Channing Tatum will indeed play his favorite superhero as the star of Gambit, but production has stalled for the film about our Ragin’ Cajun. With an original release date of October 2016, initial director Rupert Wyatt left the project after creative differences. Doug Limon, director of Mr. and Mrs. Smith and Edge of Tomorrow joined, with production starting in spring. Producer Simon Kinberg said the film will be like a “heist movie and a sexy thriller in a way.”
Thor: Ragnarok is the third movie in the Thor Franchise, and will feature the only two Avengers not present for Civil War: Thor, natch, and Hulk. Moreover, the movie is set to introduce a major female villain, as well as Valkyrie, a heroine related to Asgard but not fully understood. As far as the plot of this film, it’s possible Surtur, leader of the fire demons of Muspelheim, is the next big bad.
With scripts delivered to actors, shooting looks to begin for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 in February. News headlines say Matthew McConaughey turned down the role of the main villain which – for good reason – some suspect could be Peter Quill’s father, though this is far from confirmed. The story is supposed to be emotional, and “about fathers”; it deviates enough from the comics to make Marvel executives call it “risky.” It will almost certainly feature Star-Lord’s dad, as well as a possibility for other relationship conflicts, such as Gamora and Nebula’s relationship with Thanos, or even Drax’s assumed-dead daughter Moondragon.
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Halloween, now being concluded, means your costume must return to whatever closet they inhabited for the last eleven and a half months. The candy bags may finally be empty, the ghosts and vampires have been taken down and replaced with decorations for whatever next holiday you consider most worthwhile, and the Holiday season has begun in earnest. The sugar-addled weekends since then got us thinking: what outfits would Superheroes wear if they went trick-or-treating?
Being a classic himself, Superman is a fan of outfits from the days of yore — simple looks that everyone can recognize. Now, nothing could possible scare Superman, save perhaps someone dressed up as Kryptonite or Darkseid, and that seems like asking for trouble, but he did grow up in Kansas. Know what else is from Kansas? Corn. Lots of corn. Even more, Dorothy Gale from the Wizard of Oz is from Kansas. And who does Dorothy meet on her way to meet the wizard? Superman’s costume would be a scarecrow. The answer is simple.
Flash’s ability gives him a number of interesting options. He could, conceivable, dress as the wonder twins or two people doing a mirror routine. For the fastest man alive, the options are endless. However, Olympic figures like Usain Bolt, Pietro Mennea, or Jessie Owens would probably suit him better.
There’s no shortage of red-haired figures Black Widow could become: Ana from Frozen, Merida, Jessica Rabbit, Poison Ivy, Raggedy Ann. But what is Black Widow? A spy. Spies go undetected. They blend in. They don’t stand out. What would Black Widow be for Halloween? Anything except a red-haired character. The best costume for Black Widow is probably an Iron Man suit.
The God of Thunder’s lack of subtlety is well-known. For Halloween, his costume will end up being something either ham-fisted or simple . . . or:
Since she hails from a female-dominated society, Wonder Woman would undoubtedly choose a famous woman from history to emulate like Amelia Earhart or Cleopatra. Or maybe she really likes soccer and dresses as Mia Hamm or Cristiane Rozeira.
Can YOU think of something scarier than Batman? We can’t!
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Following the success of Daredevil, Marvel and Netflix announced a new series based on the comic book series Alias. Set to debut on Netflix on November twentieth of 2015. The premise of the show is the main character played by Krysten Ritter (Jane Margolis from Breaking Bad), and also features David Tennant, Mike Colter, Rachael Taylor, and Carrie-Anne Moss.
The premise, identical to the comic book series, is Jessica Jones as a former superhero, retired after a brief and tragic career. She know works as a private investigator using the name Alias Investigations. Layers of her past and personality are revealed, especially when Tennant’s character Kilgrave (also known as the Purple Man) appears in her life. Not a great deal is known of the scope or plot of the series yet, though if it is similar to the comic book series it will deal with Jessica Jones coming to deal with the events of the past.
Similar to Daredevil, the series will be released all at the same time, in thirteen hour-long episodes. There are said to be several cross-overs with the Daredevil series, though instead of events or characters, the shows will use similar settings, such as the same police station or hospital. Show runner Melissa Rosenberg said though the shows exist in the same universe, they are very different shows, and she didn’t want people looking for Matt Murdoch on the street while Jessica is walking.
This series is the second in a number of planned Marvel/Netflix productions, with Daredevil being the first, and followed by Luke Cage, Marvel’s Iron Fist, and the miniseries Marvel’s The Defenders, which could bring the characters together. In 2013, Disney CEO Bob Iger stated if the characters were popular enough, they could appear in a feature film. He then talked about the characters appearing in each other’s series as something to earn, such as how characters began appearing in each other’s movies (for example, when Captain America appeared in Thor 2).
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Superheroes are generally presented as the good guys. Both parts of the word mean good, in one way or the other. Some of them are anti-heroes (such as the Punisher, Daredevil, or Moon Knight), but they are almost always presented as good. Their goodness is on display. No two heroes show this as much as Superman and Batman, though their methods could not be more different.
It begins with their upbringing. Superman lost his parents before he knew them and was adopted, believing the Kent’s to be his biological parents for many years. They cared for him like only they knew how, raising him to be one of the most enduring heroic figures in pop culture today. Bruce Wayne’s parents, on the other hand, left him during his formative years, leaving a young boy crushed by the weight of a world firmly on his shoulders, even though Alfred tried to help.
These critical details bring to life two heroes whose method is different, though their end goals remain the same: Goodness.
Superman was instructed on goodness as virtue, goodness as a power. He is dressed in bright colors, takes heroic stances, and shows up with flash and fervor and does away with the evil-doers and villains with a smile on his lips and the wind in his hair, backed by blue skies and to the cheering of the crowd (this leaves out, of course Batman vs. Superman). Batman, on the other hand, was shown the world is a hard place. He dresses in dark colors and stays to the shadow. He breaks legs. He leaves people hanging from gargoyles. He refuses to let anyone know his secret identity and usually ends up pushing away the people trying to help him. He uses goodness only as a end, and his means are severely dark.
In any Dungeons and Dragons game, Superman is the Lawful Good and Batman is the Chaotic Good. Their differences create a dichotomy, combined with their popularity, elevating them to superhero stardom. It is these two heroes, with their mirrored approaches to goodness, who paved the way for all other superheroes. These two heroes create both important archetypes: the bright and shining hero, and the dark hero.
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The Netflix Daredevil series was a smashing success, garnering a 98% on rotten tomatoes and a weighted average on Metacritic of 75/100. Approximately four point four million people viewed at least one episode using various Netflix-connected devices. The episode “Speak of the Devil” was nominated for two Emmys: Outstanding Visual Effects in a Supporting Role, and Outstanding Sound Editing for a Series (The results are still pending), and Charlie Cox was honored by the American Foundation for the Blind with the Helen Keller Award, for those men and women who have “demonstrated outstanding achievement in improving quality of life for people with vision loss.”
It’s not unexpected, then, that Netflix and Marvel have announced a season two, set to premiere some time in 2016 (presumably all at the same time, as did the first season). What will change? For one, the cast will get a big addition: Jon Bernthal will join the other main actors and actresses as Marvel’s dangerous vigilante killer, Punisher. Doug Petrie and Marco Ramirez are replacing Steven S. DeKnight as the showrunners. Both men worked as writers on the first season and worked closely with DeKnight and series creator Drew Goddard. Finally, actress Élodie Yung joins the cast as Daredevil’s comic-book love interest Elektra.
Daredevil’s part in a bigger Marvel New York scheme — which includes Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Iron Fist, and the Defenders — was hinted by previous showrunner DeKnight (and the first season itself), who also said there are things planned for the second season he “can’t even hint at.” New showrunner Ramirez referred to the second season as Daredevil verses Punisher. Filming began in July of 2015 in East Harlem under the name Ringside. Surely, Netflix looks to impress even further.
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During Halloween, there is something many are driving for. Individuality. Nobody wants to be the one hundredth Peanut M&M dressed to look like a Power Ranger, or whatever. How many people do you think have dressed up as Wonder Woman, or Batwoman, or Supergirl? I’d say millions, or even billions. Would we be so far off if we said trillions? These costumes run the gamut from a sheet over your body to multiple-piece ensembles, endless in form. But sometimes they do not rise to the level of Halloween finery you have held yourself to the past years. Well, heroine, we are here to help. Official Superhero Costumes is happy announce our new do-it-yourself costume service!
There are numerous examples of how select Superhero accessories will appear. Wonder Woman with a cape, skirt, and thigh-high tights? You can see how it’ll look. Want to be Supergirl with a tube dress? You can see the result. Batgirl with a cape and corset, or Catwoman with a whip, mask, and long black gloves? Find out how it looks right here. Even The Riddler or Robin can emerge from the choices you have at your fingertips!
None of the examples given fetching your fancy, or something like that? No need to fear. We have huge number of accessories you can use to create any outfit you’d like. You can see what it’d be like if Catwoman become the next Batgirl, if Supergirl got Wonder Woman’s powers, or . . . if . . . Riddler . . . turned into Robin? Well, who knows what DC will do next. All we know is your Halloween will never be stale again when you browse the accessories and pre-formed Superhero outfits available for you.
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Last week a trailer for the newest James Bond movie Spectre was released. Speaking personally, this was an exciting moment – I’m a big fan of Bond. It got me thinking: Is James Bond a superhero? He doesn’t have super powers – other than Doctor-esque actor-shifting ability, and a superliver – and doesn’t wear any kind of recognizable costume, unless you count suits and tuxes. And yet he fights bad guys, saves the world, and is presented as the hero, though often a flawed one. However there has been a great deal of flawed heroes, even those with powers.
Had the term been around longer, characters such as Robin Hood (who inspired Arrow) and Zorro (the inspiration for Batman) would have been coined as such. These characters didn’t have super powers in the classic sense, and while Zorro dons his black cape and mask for effect, Robin Hood’s green tights were nothing more than traditional clothing before becoming an essential part of the character. Comic book grandfather Popeye gained super-strength stemming from the liberal application of spinach. Are any of these characters (or are they not) superheroes?
Let’s investigate some traditional superhero traits, and apply them to James Bond as a test. Wikipedia states some common traits of superheroes: Extraordinary powers or abilities, a strong moral code, a motivation, a secret identity, a distinctive costume, a motif or theme for the superhero, a supporting cast, a rogues gallery, independent wealth, a base of operations, and a backstory.
Right off the bat Bond is failing the super-SATs. He has no extraordinary powers or abilities, not a very strong moral code, secret identity, distinctive costume, motif or theme (like Batman or Spider-Man, not musical), he doesn’t present himself as wealthy, or at least it isn’t made apparent, and his backstory – when an actor’s Bond is given a backstory it is rarely similar to other actors. This leaves a motivation (It’s his job), a supporting cast (Q, M, Moneypenny, a few other characters movie-by-movie), a rogues gallery (this is even a sort-of; most opponents show up but once), and a base of operations (the headquarters of MI6).
So by the numbers, Bond is four-elevenths hero, which falls under the Kirby-Lee line of fifty percent. No, I kid, but Bond does not seem much like a superhero. Many of the aspects are cosmetic or incidental, but his M.O. speaks out against the term the most. Bond, in most of his incarnations, is a brutal killer who does not hesitate removing someone from the picture should he or she be revealed as a nuisance, enemy, or no longer needed. There are many ways to go about this discussion, but I believe this is the most telling. Batman may brood, but he doesn’t kill. Superman is more powerful than anything on Earth, but he doesn’t kill his enemies. Even the Punisher, who is one of the most famously violent superheroes, only guns for criminals. Bond seems to not care who is hurt as long as his mission is successful.
But still: James Bond saves lives! He fights the bad guys! He protects the world! Do the ends justify the means if the end is bringing down someone with the ability and desire to cause wanton destruction, theft, and even murder? Does a superhero’s aspect come from his methods, or from his goal?
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Once a month we write an article about a superhero that may not be in the public eye as much as some. We’ve previously done characters such as Moon Knight, Agent Carter, and even Wonder Woman, in anticipation of her upcoming movie. This week we’re doing Barbara Gordon, the original Batgirl, in honor of our exclusive Pink Batgirl Costume!
Born to Roger Gordon and wife Thelma, Barbara was orphaned at the age of thirteen, and adopted by her uncle James Gordon, captain of the Gotham police department. A fan of superheroes since birth, Barbara became infatuated with Batman, and more so when she discovered her father working with the vigilante. She became a black belt and graduated from high school at the age of sixteen thanks to a photographic memory. She earned a scholarship from Gotham State University and graduated with honors before turning eighteen. After college she continued learning self-defense, training in jujitsu and working at the Gotham public library.
Her dream was to be a hero of the more casual kind – a police officer, or a member of the FBI. Her adoptive father, however, laughed when she told him, saying she didn’t even meet the height requirements. The FBI told her much of the same. A few nights later Barbara’s life was changed at the Bristol Country Club. The Gotham City Police held a ball for their sponsors, and Barbara sewed a feminine version of the Batman costume, based on childhood designs, intending to crash the party to spite Gordon. However, a villain known as Killer Moth arrived to extort the guests.
Killer Moth grabbed Bruce Wayne as a hostage, and Barbara tackled the villain to the ground. Wayne escaped to change, during which Killer Moth got the better of Batgirl. Batman defeated him with Robin’s help, but Killer Moth got away. Batman criticized Batgirl, but later sent her Batarangs. She later met Batman and became a protégé of his.
To her surprise, her life as Batgirl failed to fulfill her, and after a few years she began to retire in a manner. As recounted in The Killing Joke, Joker came to her home and shot her, paralyzing her from the waist down and kidnapping her uncle at the same time. Barbara spent time in a deep depression. When she recovered, she realized that she could no longer be the kind of superhero she thought, but realized she could still help. Creating a comprehensive computer system and utilizing her photographic memory, she became Batman’s researcher and knowledge expert, dubbing herself “Oracle.”
Forming the “Birds of Prey” with a number of other female heroes, Oracle proved herself indispensable to a number of heroes, many that didn’t know her personally. She employed various young agents to be her eyes and ears in Gotham, and helped one of them, Cassandra Cain, become the newest Batgirl.
After batman usurps her computer system, Oracle moved to Metropolis, cutting ties with Gotham’s Dark Knight. She is given a virus developed by Brainiac, getting cyberpathic powers that let her interact with computer systems psychically. These powers recede when the virus is rendered dormant. Dick Grayson, a previous Robin and currently Nightwing, proposes to Barbara, but the marriage is called off after the Infinite Crises storyline. Nightwing is critically injured, and during his recovery Barbara states she doesn’t think he’s ready for marriage he agrees, but promises to return, leaving her the engagement ring.
A year after these events, Cassandra has stepped down as Batgirl and become the leader of the League of Assassins. Barbara continues to lead the Birds of Prey and expands the operation, leading to a takeover attempt by a government agent called Spy Smasher. Barbara beats her in a fight, and is joined by all of her previous agents to help return the agency to her command.
In the Blackest Night crossover event, Barbara and her adoptive father are forced to fight for their lives against the Black Lantern Corps. Deadman, a ghost superhero, possessed Barbara and fought some of the Black Lanterns off, allowing them to escape to Batman’s underground base.
Shortly after the events of Blackest Night, Commissioner Gordon’s son James Jr. returns to Gotham. A killer and a psychopath, James was taking medicine to reduce his psychopathic tendencies, but Barbara discovered the medicine was increasing them instead. James kidnaps Barbara, but Barbara stabbed him non-fatally in the eye before Batman arrived, able to stop his plan to poison an infant nutrition plant.
As Batgirl, Barbara was a talented martial-artist; good enough to still defeat opponents in a wheelchair. A photographic memory, high intellect, computer knowledge, and hacking skills make up her most useful attributes as Oracle, though being paralyzed makes it difficult to compete physically.
We hope you enjoyed this article; be sure to check out our other pieces, and take a look at our exclusive Pink Batgirl Costume!
We’ve just gotten the new costumes in, and we’re working hard to get them uploaded. We also have a very special announcement to reveal and the end of this post!
We’ve already shown the cool new costumes from Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron, but that’s not all! We’ll have the heroic thief Ant-Man, as well as the villainous Yellow jacket from Marvel’s next film Ant-Man. He may be small, but he packs a punch! If you’re looking for an outfit that helps you become not just powerful but pretty as well, we’ll have a huge number of Harley Quinn, Gamora, Black Widow, She-Ra, and other strong women.
There’s no small amount of new costumes for kids, as well! Characters from movies like Avengers or Ant-Man, television shows like Power Rangers, classic superhero titles like Wonder Woman, Batman, and Spider-Man, and even video games like Mortal Kombat X and Sonic Boom. There are even generic superhero items if you want to make your own unique costume.
And speaking of unique, here comes the special announcement! Official Costumes is lucky enough to have an exclusive, one-of-a-kind costume, the Pink Batgirl Womens Costume! We noticed that there were no outfits for an adult superhero fan that wants to look pretty and powerful at the same time, so we had one of the our vendors create this special costume. You can only find this outfit from Official Costumes, and we’ll only offer it for a limited time. We don’t have the item in stock yet, but you can sign up to be notified when it arrives.
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