Spider-Man’s Newest Peter Parker

Tom Holland - the newest Spider-Man
Tom Holland – the newest Spider-Man

Announced earlier this week, the actor picked to play Spider-Man in the next Marvel and Spider-Man movies – as well as the director of the next Spider-Man movie – has been announced. Nineteen-year-old Tom Holland from Britain is the actor that has picked up the title of web-slinger from Andrew Garfield, who also claims partial British citizenship.

Holland’s previous acting credits began in the theatre (since he’s British). His first part was Billy’s best friend Michael in Billy Elliot the Musical after his talent was recognized during a hip hop class in London. He eventually became one of the rotating Billy Elliots, with three other performers, until May of 2010. He quickly made the transition to film, starring in The Impossible, providing the voice for main character Shô in the British version of Arrietty, played one of the co-stars in How I Live Now, and in 2014 provided the voice for one of Tom Hardy’s sons in Locke. In 2015, Holland has already appeared in In the Heart of the Sea, Backcountry, and Pilgrimage. He has already been set for the Untitled Spider-Man film, as well as Captain America: Civil War in 2016.

The surprising choice for director is Jon Watts. Watts is, in comparison to some other directors of the Spider-Man movies, an untested director. His IMDB directing list is a mere thirteen credits, which also include multiple episodes of Onion News Network and Onion SportsDome episodes. His most well-known movie is likely Clown, though his most recent directing job, Cop Car, has been viewed much more favorably. In 2014, Watts was named Filmmaker in Residence at the Atlanta Film Festival, the first ever. However, this sort of decision isn’t unprecedented, since Amazing Spider-Man’s Marc Webb had only indie gem (500) Days of Summer as a big-budget release.

And of course, we all know how well that worked out.

amazingspiderman2

Thanks for reading! We hope you’ve enjoyed this article. Come back next week for more fun fan information!

Father’s Day in Comic Book Land

Missing father
It’s really common

Father’s Day is Sunday, June 21st this year. It’s a day out of the year when we appreciate the hard work and dedication our fathers have poured into us, and are rewarded with ties, cologne, homemade cards, and macaroni pictures. It’s too bad no one ever celebrates it in the comic books.

With the sort of-exception of Superman (his actual parents are dead – since his planet blew up – but his adoptive parents are alive), the comic world is full of orphans. The obvious example is batman, whose parent’s deaths are part of his origin story, but this is a long-standing tradition from both Marvel and DC. It’s more prominent in Marvel (thanks mostly to Stan Lee, who was in love with the idea): Peter Parker’s parents are nowhere to be seen and his grand-uncle Ben is killed as his origin, a large number of X-Men are orphans (such as Cyclops and Professor X), Daredevil, Sue and Johnny Storm from the Fantastic Four, and even Janet Van Dyne, the Wasp.

It’s an all-too common trope that we see repeated endlessly in superhero books and movies. And it’s not reserved for the capes, either! Plenty of superhero villains are orphans, as well as classic characters like Luke Skywalker (sort of), Harry Potter, a whole lot of fairy tale characters, and most child video game characters.

Why does this idea come up so much? At the beginning it was for obvious reasons: Batman wanted to avenge his parents by capturing criminals. Superman’s dead biological parents are a necessity in order to get him to Earth, and Spider-Man’s Uncle Ben was killed to teach Spider-Man an important lesson that would help him become a superhero. After that, it begins to become more of “the parents will get in the way of the main character,” especially in video games and literature. Eventually, it comes down to being parent-less, even just one, gives more emotional credence to a character, gives them more freedom, and allows for easy angst.

It’s a tragic event for anyone to go through losing a parent, and commonly something that creates a drastic change. When a character has this as part of his or her beginning, it is rarely ever treated as this, though this is usually because the death has happened far enough in the past for it to be a partially-healed pain, or have them never know their parents.

We’re thankful that the frequency of deaths in real life doesn’t match what it is in pop culture. This Father’s Day, be sure to appreciate your father from keeping you from being a superhero.

Happy father's day

Batgirl Character Corner

Barbara Gordon as Batgirl
Barbara Gordon as Batgirl

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!

History:

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.”

Oracle Batgirl
Oracle watches the Birds of Prey

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.

Abilities:

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!

Origin Story: Graduation and the Hero

What's your origin story?
What’s your origin story?

It’s the end of the school year, which means you or someone you know may be graduating shortly. It’s the perfect time to find an item that will help you stand out in the crowd, no matter what color your robes are. It’s an important time for any person, and we’re going to look at the superhero version of the graduation: The origin story.

Everyone knows the most famous origin stories, but why? It’s because they give a good emotional balance to the character. Superman was told the importance of helping others, and from adoptive parents Martha and Jonathan Kent he was given a keen sense of the goodness in life, something that never left him.

Bruce Wayne, witnessing his parent’s violent murder, was left shocked. He dedicated himself to preventing the same kind of tragedy for anyone else, as well as harnessing his fear to become something that would empower him instead of debilitate him. Peter Parker, accidentally allowing the man that would kill his Uncle Ben to go past, learned quickly the phrase “with great power comes great responsibility.” He learns that his powers give him the chance to help people, and that he must either accept the calling he’s been given or do nothing even though he could

All of these origin stories have one thing in common: a period that tells them what it means to be a hero. It gives them a challenge they must face continually to remain heroic.

What was your origin story? It’s possible you haven’t encountered it yet, or it might have happened long ago. You could be going through it now. It doesn’t have to be over by the time Pomp and Circumstance plays. It may very well be difficult or painful, but being a hero has never been easy.

We hope you’ve enjoyed this discussion. Come back next week for more superhero talk!

“A hero is an ordinary individual who finds the strength to persevere and endure in spite of overwhelming obstacles.” – Christopher Reeve

Avengers Members

Group Avengers
Not even all of the Avengers

While the current movie team has had a relatively simple history, the comic book version of this classic squad has had more lineup changes than King Crimson. Today we’re going to take a look at all the characters that have joined and left the group since its inception.

The Sixties

The heroes that started the team in September of 1963 are some of the most famous: Iron Man, Thor, Henry Pym (the original Ant-Man), Wasp (Who would eventually become Ant-Man’s wife), and Hulk, of course with Nick Fury. Captain America was found encased in ice in March of the following year, and given retroactive founder status thanks to his real-life age. Hawkeye, Quicksilver, and Scarlet Witch joined in May of the next year, followed by Swordsman in September . . . who was expelled in the same issue, to be later readmitted in 1973. Hercules joined in October of 1967, Black Panther joined in May – and Vision in November – of 1968. Black Knight joined at the tail end, December of 1969.

The Seventies

The seventies’ first addition was the current-member Black Widow in 5/1973. Mantis joined in 9/75, Beast, Moondragon, and Hellcat joined in 9/76. The last three were all on probationary status for a varied number of months. Two-Gun Kid joined in 8/78, Ms. Marvel, now Captain Marvel, joined in 5/79, and Falcon joined in 6/79.

The Eighties

During the eighties, things became more complicated. Wonder man, probationary since ’77, joined officially in 4/80. Tigra joined in 9/81, and She-Hulk in 7/82. Captain Marvel joined in 5/83, Starfox in 5/84, Namor in 12/85, and Doctor Druid in 4/87. From 84-87, Hawkeye left the Avengers and began the West Coast Avengers, recruiting Mockingbird and War Machine in 9/84, Thing (from the Fantastic Four) in 6/86, Moon Knight in 6/87, who would leave quickly, and Firebird in West Coast Avengers Annual #2. After the Marvel universe event Inferno, Demolition Man, Forgotten One, Mister Fantastic and Invisible Woman, U.S. Agent, Quasar, and Human Torch before the decade would be over.

The Nineties

The complications increase in the nineties. In the first year heroes Sersi and Stingray join. Spider-Man, Sandman, Rage, Machine Man, Living Lightning, Spider-Woman, Crystal, Thunderstrike, and Darkhawk are made UN Charter recruits, though some would not last. After the Heroes Return event, Justice joins the Avengers in May of ’98.

The Aughts

Triathlon and Silverclaw join in 2000, Jack of Hearts in 2001, Ant-Man (Scott Lang, the character we’ll see in the upcoming movie) joined in 2002, and Captain Britain joined in 2004. The New Avengers, thanks to a massive super-villain breakout, is formed of Luke Cage, a.k.a. Power Man, Wolverine, Sentry, and Echo. The Civil War, which pitted hero against hero, had the New Avengers become an anti-registration group, and had the following members join the original Avengers: Ares, Amadeus Cho, Jocasta, Stature, and Vision. Only Amadeus Cho and Stature survived, though Stature was resurrected.

The New Tens

After the events of Dark Reign and Siege, Captain America (James Barnes) and Spider-Woman joined in May of 2010, while Valkyrie, Sharon Carter, Nova, and Ant-Man (a third, Eric O’Grady) joined the Secret Avenger at the same time. Power Woman joined the New Avenger in June of 2010, Flux joined the Avengers in September of 2010, Protector (a.k.a. Marvel Boy) joined in December of 2010, while Doctor Strange joined the new Avengers at the same time. Red Hulk joined the Avengers in June of 2011. After the Fear Itself event, the teams were shifted by Captain America. Daredevil, Storm, Quake, Captain Britain (a different one), and Venom joined the Avengers and the Secret Avengers.

In 2012 the Marvel event Avengers vs. X-Men took place, and following that the teams were again shifted, along with a number of new additions. Havok, younger brother of Scott “Cyclops” Summers, joined in October of 2012. In December, Cannonball, Sunspot, Manifold, Shang-Chi, Captain Universe, Smasher, and Hyperion joined. In January of ’13, Rogue joined. In February, Sunfire. In July, Doombot and Victor Mancha. In the Infinity storyline (which might find itself drawling parallels to the upcoming Infinity War movies), Abyss, Ex Nihilo, Nightmask, and Star Brand joined in October of ’13. Alexis the Protector joined about the same time, as well as: Ronin, Blue Marvel, Power Man, and White Tiger. Finally, Kaluu joined in November of ’14, Doctor Voodoo in December, and Sabretooth in January of this year.

And you told us all that because:

I could write more. I could write forever. Marvel’s history is long, complicated, and difficult. There are side-teams, spinoffs, betrayals, evil teams, and more deaths and resurrections than most soap operas. Hopefully you’ve stayed though until now, because there is a point to all this: Even for me, someone who spent a long time reading comic books as a kid, the Avengers are too dense. Marvel in particular is too dense. Have you ever seen a timeline of the X-Men? There are just too many characters to have anything be meaningful. At the end of Age of Ultron, the Avengers’ B-team is just short of assembled: Scarlet Witch, War Machine/Iron Patriot, Falcon, Vision, all of which you can find in the list above. While these characters were at least partially set-up, how can we be sure that Marvel won’t continue to add new characters without giving them the time they need to become something the viewers can connect to?

By the movie’s climax, there were 12 heroes: Captain America, Iron man, Thor, Hulk, Black Widow, Hawkeye, Nick Fury, Vision, Scarlet Witch, Quicksilver, War Machine, and Falcon. That’s not even counting villains or non-heroic personnel. Who will we see in the next Avengers? Spider-Man? Doctor Strange? Black Panther? The entire cast of the Guardians of the Galaxy? It’s impossible to have a story when there are two dozen characters to deal with, and I hope Marvel realizes that.

The movie Avengers
The movie Avengers (Ant-Man was a founding member, you recall!)

Thanks for reading! We hope you enjoyed this article; come back soon for more fun fan information!

The Infinity stones, and an Age of Ultron Plot Hole?

The six Infinity Stones
The six Infinity Stones

Age of Avengers, Guardians of the Galaxy, and Thor 2 spoilers!

What are the Infinity Stones? Constant readers of the Avengers comics can probably tell us in greater detail. They were once known as Soul Gems, until Thanos decided Infinity Gems sounded cooler. The Marvel Cinematic Universe refers to them as the Infinity Stones.

The Stones are indestructible; not even the most powerful weapons can destroy them. If someone had the power to combine their forces, that person would become unstoppable – but no one who has even attempted this has survived. They were created by “cosmic entities, and each possesses unique capabilities. Contact with the stones in lesser beings results in illness or instant incineration, such as when Jane Foster became ill in Thor 2, or when Carina was blown apart in Guardians of the Galaxy.

How many have the movies encountered so far? Thor tells us in the Age of Ultron. He says that the Mind Stone (The item held inside Loki’s staff and the item used in Vision) is the fourth Infinity Stone encountered lately – a hint at the greater conflict that has been building between the good guys of Marvel and Thanos.

But wait. Four? The first was the Tesseract, seen frequently in Marvel’s Phase one. The second was the Mind Stone, as seen in Age of Ultron. The third was the Reality Stone (The red goop from Thor 2), and the final one was the Power Stone in Guardians of the Galaxy. It’s easy to see how Thor would know about the first three . . . but how did he know about the Power Stone?

The Collector
The Collector

In Guardians of the Galaxy, the Power Stone (better known in the movie as the Orb), is given to Nova Prime Irani Rael at the end of the movie by the Guardians. In the movie we neither hear nor see any mention of the Asgardians, Thor, or the other Avengers. We are aware of the relationship between Taneleer Tivan, better known as the Collector, and the Asgardians (Sif and Volstagg give him the Reality Stone at the end of Thor 2), and of course Tivan hired Gamora to retrieve the Power Stone for him in Guardians. Other than the fact Tivan knows both groups, we see nothing to indicate information has been passed.

Is this a plot hole? Possibly. At the end of Thor 2, Thor renounces his claim to the throne, choosing to go to Earth and spend his time with Jane Foster and the Avengers. If the release of the movies coincides with the time they take place, then it is at this time the Guardians of the Galaxy encounter and hide the Power Stone. So why does Thor know of its use and appearance in Age of Ultron? Likely, it is a nod toward unseen events, and future movies, but that doesn’t explain how Thor is aware of the events from Guardians of the Galaxy.

Thanos' end game
Thanos’ end game

We can look at the options for the line: Thor discusses the three stones that he knew about, leaving out the purple Power Stone and, possibly, telling a less-attentive audience there have only been three stones revealed so far. Or, he says the line that we hear in the movie, which contains factual information that he couldn’t know. It falls to a damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don’t situation, and the filmmakers ultimately went with the one that keeps the audience from thinking something false. This of course ignoring the possibility of changing the line altogether.

So what of it? I don’t think we’ll see anything explaining the hole in future movies, thanks to its rather small importance. Still, it’s interesting to see a hole in such a tightly-written series. However, that isn’t the only plot hole people have noticed – though a number of those are “Why didn’t X scientific fact come into play?” which is a different creature.

Anyway, we hope you’ve enjoyed this little treatise. Come back soon for more information about comics, movies, and costumes!

Moon Knight Character Corner

Moon Knight
Moon Knight

Normally, for the semi-regular Character Corner, we feature popular superheroes in the public eye, or perhaps those that are soon to be featured in one of the many movies or television shows that are currently being produced. But this time we’re going to take a look at a lesser-known hero in marvel’s catalogue: the cloaked and supernatural Moon Knight!

History:

Marc Spector’s father Elias, a Jewish Rabbi, escaped to America when Hitler’s army invaded Czechoslovakia. His son was born in the US, and Marc’s mother died soon afterward. As a child, Marc was upset that his father never fought against persecution, and ended up leaving home to become a professional fighter. After punching his father for entering a ring during a fight, Marc enlisted in the US Marines. After two tours of duty he became a field agent with the C.I.A., and worked with a number of people, including his brother Randall, whom he killed after exposing a gun-running scheme.

Afterward, Spector became a soldier-for-hire and met Jean-Paul “Frenchie” DuChamp; the two traveled the world taking a variety of jobs. They eventually worked for a Sudanese man named Raoul Bushman. Bushman massacred a village and killed an old and friendly archaeologist named Peter Alraune, and Spector revolted. Running to safety with Alraune’s daughter Marlene into the Egyptian tomb Bushman had been searching for; he challenged Bushman and was mortally wounded. Marlene and the work crew laid him to rest underneath and idol of Khonshu, the Egyptian god of vengeance. Khonshu appeared before Spector’s vision and promised him a renewed chance at life in exchange for acting as the deity’s avatar.

Bushman himself escaped, but Spector captured his men and began his life as the heroic Moon Knight. He, Frenchie, and Marlene moved to New York, taking the idol, and began to fight crime using a costume, equipment, and his personal fortune. He began to develop multiple personas, useful in his life as a crime-fighter, and his original personage of Marc Spector became fractured, weak, and small. He fought a variety of criminals until Bushman re-appeared, paying Midnight Man, a common foe, destroy Moon Knight’s idol of Khonshu. Since Moon Knight believed the idol granted him his powers (strength, agility, speed, as well as others) he lost his self-control and was threatened with the idea of being consumed with his multiple personalities until Marlene produced another idol, which she said was the original.

Moon Knight in the shadows
Moon Knight in the shadows

Spector’s high-stress life began to take a serious toll, and, after the death of his estranged father (and, natch, the fight with a Kaballah-powered villain named Zohar that used his father’s body as a power source), suffered a mental breakdown due to his many multiple personalities. He decided to abandon them, settle down with Marlene, and attempt to find a measure of peace.

This, of course, wouldn’t last, and Moon Knight re-appeared when he went to Egypt and met with three ancient priests of Khonshu, who granted him new weapons. He joined the West Coast Avengers, but he never felt truly welcome in the group. He soon returned to New York and continued fighting crime on a non-cosmic level (which had been a worrying trend, including time travel, the ghost of murdered villains haunting a team member, and the aforementioned ancient priests), choosing to rely on human ingenuity and strength over mystical powers.

But: He underwent a near-death experience, found his brother Randall was still alive, and that Randall had been trying to take over the spot of Moon Knight – at one point taking the powers for himself. Randall Spector, known as Shadowknight, was defeated by Spector and the Punisher.

After his headquarters at Spectorcorp was destroyed, Moon Knight was killed. Khonshu wasn’t finished with him, however, and brought him back to life. An attack by Seth, another Egyptian deity, using Bushman and other villains on the UN brought national attention to Moon Knight, he would help Black Panther reunite with his own patron deity Bath, and he even gave up mistrust of teams to try and bring in the Punisher, due to the latter’s increasing brutality.

Spector haunted by Bushman
Spector haunted by Bushman

Marc Spector’s fragmented life became worse after finally killing one of his personal demons, Raoul Bushman, in combat. The battle left him with broken knees, and became addicted to drugs and alcohol. One of his alternate personalities, Jake Lockley, became the dominant one, and this tenure of Moon Knight was a struggle against his violent nature; he was hounded by a small, imaginary tormentor, a man in a Moon Knight costume with a bird’s skull who goaded him to kill.

Some time later, Moon Knight went to Mars with the Secret Avengers.

Later still, Moon Knight’s fragile mental state shattered completely. Approached by Captain America, Wolverine, and Spider-Man in Los Angeles, he was told villains were congregating in the area. Moon Knight investigated, and found Mr. Hyde, a shape-shifting villain, selling an Ultron head. Moon Knight was able to recover the head, and gave it back to the three heroes that had approached him originally. Unbeknownst to him, however, the three heroes are mere hallucinations. Believing himself to be Spider-Man, Spector, confronted the criminal Snapdragon. His Wolverine personality took control halfway through the fight, but he was defeated.

Slowly, Moon Knight comes to realize the full strength of his multiple personalities and, after moving back to New York, discovered with the help of a psychologist that he did not, in fact, have what is known as dissociative identity disorder, but instead his mind had been “colonized” by Khonshu since becoming Moon Knight. Khonshu’s four aspects took on the alternate personalities that manifested, and these apparent personalities were Spector’s brain’s way of making sense of the intrusion. His psychologist, Ellisa Warsame, used hypnosis to remove Khonshu, but took the powers for herself, leaving him in an undisclosed prison. He was blamed for the actions Warsame committed, but defeated her and regained Khonshu’s power.

Moon Knight's fragmented personalities
Moon Knight’s fragmented personalities

Abilities

While Moon Knight’s strength, endurance, and reflexes are enhanced depending on the phase of the moon, he is also a superbly-skilled fighter (both unarmed and with weapons) thanks to his years in the marines, as well as a driver, pilot, and – thanks in part to his multiple personalities – can resist mental manipulation and psychic attacks. At the current time, Moon Knight has stated he has no supernatural powers. Who knows if he’s telling the truth.

Thanks for reading! Come back next week for more fun superhero and costume information!

New Superhero Costumes

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.

Thanks for reading! Come back often for more fun fan and costume information!

99810779-pink-batgirl-000

Why Marvel Should Keep Things Simple

Marvel is big!
Marvel is big!

Marvel’s most recent silver-screen money-maker, Avengers Age of Ultron, is now out in theaters. I’ve already seen it. I’m not allowed to tell anybody about it, though, and certainly not because I wrote this in advance. So for the remainder of this post, I’ll be pretending I haven’t seen the movie. Don’t worry; it makes everything easier for everyone.

In the original Marvel comic series, Ant-Man (Hank Pym) is the inventor and creator of Ultron. Joss Whedon has already gone on record saying he’s retconning that point (a term that means to change something already established). We don’t know who will be the new creator, though many people have guessed it to be Tony Stark. However, we also know that Marvel’s later Ant-Man film, which comes out in July, will be set partially during Age of Ultron’s climax.

Here’s a question: Will the storylines intertwine?

Hank Pym isn’t the Ant-Man we see in the movie, though that character is present. He’s old now, and he chooses Scott Lang, a thief, to take up the Ant-mantle in his place for an unspecified reason. It’s very possible Pym will have something to do with the Ultron storyline, or that Ant-Man’s plot will affect the Avengers movie. We may not even find out until Ant-Man is released, at which time we will be awestruck by how the events change Age of Ultron. But is that such a good thing?

Imagine you’re on your way to see Ant-Man, but haven’t seen Age of Ultron. You hazard the barbs your friends fling at you, and eventually the movie begins. Things happen, a guy gets punched, somebody makes a witty remark, and then one character shows another character something on a screen, or out a window, and everyone in the theater gasps – except for you. What happened, you ask yourself. Did I miss something?

It’s uncertain – and, hopefully, unintended – but the Marvel movies are getting more complicated. With a titanic Phase Three beginning next year, multiple television shows that fit inside the gaps left by the movies, and crossing storylines such as the possible above, how long will it be for the Marvel Cinematic Universe to become incomprehensible to outsiders? Those that have seen everything will remain in the loop, but miss just one movie, or the Netflix-only Daredevil, or decide Agents of SHIELD isn’t worth it, and you’re lost. Suddenly Black Widow is shacking up with Daredevil in San Francisco, Captain America is black, and Thor is a woman.

Again, hopefully the writers and producers will understand this as a danger, and work to keep outside viewers interested with every movie, but this fan is just hoping it doesn’t go the way of the X-Men comics.

Marvel Phase Three

Marvel's Phase Three
Marvel’s Phase Three

On July 17th of 2015, Ant-Man will be released to the unsuspecting populace of Earth. It’s the final film of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s second phase, beginning with Iron Man Three in 2013. So far the movies (not counting Ant-Man and Avengers Age of Ultron) have grossed over three point three billion dollars. Phase Three, recently detailed, has a total of ten films! Let’s take a look:

Captain America: Civil War

To be released in 2016, the third Captain America film takes a famous cross-over storyline from the comic books and brings it to the MCU. The government decides to regulate superhero activity, requiring the members of the Marvel universe to declare their secret identities and register. While Iron Man supports the new law, Captain America is against it, and the two form factions, resulting in the heroes coming to blows. The movie will be the first of the films under a single hero’s name that also has another actor in it, with Captain America, iron Man, Chadwick Boseman as Black Panther, Falcon, Bucky Barnes/The Winter Soldier, Black Widow, and Hawkeye involved. Joe and Anthony Russo are directing.

Doctor Strange

Also in 2016, staring Benedict Cumberbatch as Stephen Strange and with Scott Derrickson directing, Doctor Strange tells the story of a surgeon who is involved in a terrible accident. Discovering powers both mystical and . . . strange . . . Strange must save the world from the Ancient One, who is being played by an as-of-yet to-be-confirmed actor.

2017 Movies

Movies scheduled for a 2017 release include Guardians of the Galaxy 2 on May, which we see a return of all surviving characters from the first movie, including Nebula and Thanos. It will be directed by James Gunn once more. Spider-Man also comes out that year, a reboot of the popular hero after a landmark agreement between Sony and Marvel, though only the release date (July 28th) is known. Finally, on November 3rd, Thor: Ragnarok will be released. Chris Hemsworth and Tom Hiddleston will return as Thor and Loki.

2018 Movies

Avengers: Infinity War Part One will be released May fourth of 2018, the film will revolve around Thanos and the Infinity Gauntlet. The big four, Thanos, and Loki are cast. On July 6th, 2018, Black Panther will be released starring Chadwick Boseman as T’Challa/Black Panther, the first black superhero in mainstream comics. On July 6th, Captain Marvel, with an unknown actress starring as Carol Danvers/Captain Marvel, will be released.

2019 Movies

A mere two movies are scheduled for 2019, the first being Avengers: Infinity War Part Two on May 3rd, and the second being Inhumans on July 12th. This second film will likely focus on the Inhuman Royal Family, leaders of a race of superhumans, as many people associate the name “Inhumans” with the family.

We won’t hesitate to post new information as it becomes available; be sure to check back soon for more fun information!