How confident would you feel if the fate of the entire planet and humanity itself rested in the hands of a violent, sexually-abused vigilante? Yeah, me too. That is exactly what makes “The Victories” #15 the exceptional finish to a truly inspired series. How else can celestial deities judge us a species if not through one of our most damaged souls.
WRITTEN BY: Michael Avon Oeming
ART BY: Michael Avon Oeming
PUBLISHER: Dark Horse Comics
RELEASE: 3 September 2014
Reviewed by Your Friendly Neighborhood Brady
From the beginning, this series has done nothing but surprise and surpass each previous issue. The team of champions, The Victories, has battled all forms of evil and corruption to protect the rest of the world. As this saga has gone on, there have been significant moments and casualties for the good guys as well as the population at large. Losses have mounted and worn down our heroes.
No one save Faustus, the last surviving member of the team, is left to oppose the would-be world manipulators. Then people start exploding. Mastermind creator Michael Avon Oeming has completed his opus to superheroes in this final installment with such heft and simplicity at the same time. Can someone who has suffered as Faustus has be the right person to run everything? It’s such a fascinating question to ask at the end of it all that I really don’t know what to think.
What would you be willing to sacrifice to make the world better?
Your humanity? Your freedom? Your own moral code? Your right to choose?
These are just some of the fascinating things to ponder as the big decision comes about and…you should really read it yourself. No amount of adjectives or superlatives can express the sheer originality Oeming has poured into this series. The Victories was raw, fresh, original, and brutally honest about how superheroes would cope with doing what they do. Pick up this series any way you like.
I guarantee you will be hoping for more even at the end.
After many years in development, the newest feature film from genre favorite Joe Dante (Gremlins, The Howling) is finally hitting the big screen – one particular screen, that is, as the film is slated to premiere at the prestigious Venice Film Festival this Thursday, September 4th. The horror comedy Burying the Ex is Dante’s first theatrical feature as director since 2009′s The Hole, and explores the niche subgenre of zombie-themed romantic comedy (Rom-Zom-Com), one that previously achieved a great deal of cult success with Edgar Wright’s Shaun of the Dead and most recently last year’s Warm Bodies.
Based on a 2009 short by Alan Trezza – who expanded his own story to feature length – the film stars Star Trek‘s Anton Yelchin as Max, a horror fan and proprietor of a movie memorabilia shop who falls for and eventually moves in with the lovely Evelyn (Twilight‘s Ashley Greene), only to discover that his new beau is more than a little bit psycho… but that’s nothing compared to her behavior after she’s dead.
Prior to the Venice screening, I got a chance to chat with Dante about the project’s long road to release, and along the way we took a quick breeze through zombie cinema history. Of course, you know I also had to ask him about the status of the upcoming Gremlins reboot…
Bloody-Disgusting: It’s great to see you back in features after doing quite a bit of television recently. Apart from the technical and financial aspects, what are the creative differences between how you approach a feature and how you shoot an episode?
JOE DANTE: Well, the main thing is that when you’re doing TV, you’re always answering to somebody else, so you have to follow the strictures, rules and styles that are laid down for that show; the show’s rules may not allow for certain kinds of shots, or a certain style of editing. Whereas if you’re doing a feature, it’s all yours, and you can usually approach it however you want. Of course, the result is much more personal than any of your TV work.
BD: What first brought Alan’s story to your attention? Did you see the original short?
DANTE: Actually I’d never seen it… in fact, I’ve still not seen it. Alan just showed me the script, and told me after I’d read it that it was based on this short that he’d done. I liked him, and I liked the script, and it was a situation where we said, “Let’s see what we can do with this.” That was about five years ago, and over that time several opportunities came and went. But we persevered, and suddenly, with really no warning at all, a situation presented itself whereby if we could make it within a certain time-frame, we could probably get the money. So we just geared up and got it made.
BD: Did you and Alan make any changes to the original concept in the process?
DANTE: We did work together on the script – I had some ideas that I thought would make it better – but Alan really did most of that himself. It was a sold script when I read it, and he had already fleshed out the main ideas completely by that point. I don’t think the movie we ended up making was really that much different from the original script I read five years ago.
BD: Zombie features come in and out of vogue, but they’re seeing a resurgence at the moment. Do you think the success of films like World War Z helped you get this project financed?
DANTE: I have a feeling that World War Z‘s success was the one thing that finally put this thing over, because it really wasn’t being taken too seriously before that picture came out. As you said, the zombie genre has a pretty checkered past. It goes all the way back to the 1930s with White Zombie and King of the Zombies, which were basically considered junk; even I Walked with a Zombie, which most of us hold up as a classic now, was considered junk back in the ’40s when it was made. The same goes for Zombies of Mora Tau in the ’50s. It wasn’t until 1968 when Night of the Living Dead became a big cult hit, and the name “zombies” started to be associated with what would really be considered “ghouls,” that the genre started to pick up steam – especially after the Italians jumped on board with their own movies. Who would have thought in those first few decades that a studio would spend as much money on a zombie film as they did for World War Z? It’s a huge change of fortune for the genre.
BD: You clearly have an encyclopedic knowledge of horror, and from what I’ve seen of Burying the Ex, it looks like that knowledge and affection for the genre is going to be a big part of the story.
DANTE: It is, it’s definitely what I’d call a “monster kid” movie. But it’s for monster kids who have grown up a little, and by that I mean it’s a little sexier than usual. The hero of the film works at a movie memorabilia store, and he’s basically the stand-in for all the people like us, who grew up watching this stuff and loving it. Anton is a big film buff himself, and he’s was constantly watching movies and discussing them while we were shooting the picture.
BD: So are we going to see a lot of those knowing winks to classic horror that were scattered throughout films like The Howling?
DANTE: Oh yes… horror fans will spot a lot of things they recognize.
BD: I was living near Hollywood Forever Cemetery when you were shooting some scenes there. Is that the first time you’ve filmed at that location?
DANTE: Oddly enough, I’d never even been there at all before, even though I’d heard about the outdoor film screenings they have there in the summer, and I’d always wanted to know what it was like. We shot there for a night or two, and it’s a very cool place. I think this is a very L.A. movie; at one point we thought about shooting it in New Orleans or Seattle to save money, but I think that wouldn’t have captured that L.A.-centric feel that we needed for this story.
BD: I read that at one stage you were considering online crowd-funding to get fans involved in the development of the film. Did that plan come into play?
DANTE: That was a very late development. We were actually shooting at the time that they decided they wanted to try crowd-funding. I did something similar a couple of years ago for Trailers from Hell, and I know that you can’t just wake up one morning and decide you’re going to take that approach; you have to plan it vigorously. There are some people thanked in the credits who donated funds to the production as a part of that, but I’m not sure I’d call it entirely successful.
BD: Do you have any distributors interested yet?
DANTE: We’ve had some nibbles, but I think the producers are waiting for the premiere in Venice to figure out what to do.
BD: One thing I’m sure fans are dying to find out is if there’s any news about the new Gremlins film. Have you been involved with the development of that project?
DANTE: Lots of people have asked me, but honestly I don’t really have much to do with it. There are two major entities involved – Warner Brothers and Amblin – and various people have been trying jump through the hoops with the studios to get this picture off the ground for years. Although some very well-known people have come up with a concept and some good ideas over that time, for whatever reason they were not seized upon until recently. I’m told they’re finally working on something now, but frankly I have no idea what it is! [laughs]
BD: What’s next on your agenda?
DANTE: I’m doing more television right now, which helps pay for the time it takes me to raise funding for these film projects [laughs], of which Burying the Ex was one that took a number of years to get made. It’s just one of the many pictures that you pull out of your pocket and they say, “Okay, what else have you got?”
BD: You have to have so many irons in the fire to beat the odds.
BD: Yeah, you really can’t exist in this business with just one movie that you’re trying to get made; you have to have a lot of them, because the chances of any one of them happening are fairly remote. For example, this one was almost a fluke, and you have to be able to strike when the iron is hot. If you’d asked me two years ago if I’d thought this particular film was going to be made, I would’ve had my doubts, because it took such a long time to make it happen… but then, all of a sudden, there it is. If there’s one certainty in this business, it’s that you just never know.
In news that should make our European readers happy, Bethesda has decided to push forward the release date for The Evil Within four precious days to October 14. This means the game will arrive in Europe, India, South Africa and the Middle East the same day it does in North America. The publisher also confirmed that the previously announced release dates for Australia (Oct 16), New Zealand (Oct 17) and Japan (Oct 23) remain unchanged.
Its latest trailer focused on the game’s voice cast, which includes Anson Mount (Hell on Wheels) as Sebastian Castellanos, Jennifer Carpenter (Dexter) as Julie Kidman, and Jackie Earle Haley (A Nightmare On Elm St.) as Ruvik.
The Evil Within arrives on PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One on October 14.
Watch where you’re walking…
XLrator Media released the first clip from their sci-fi action-thriller The Scribbler, which is set to open September 19.
“The Scribbler follows Suki (Katie Cassidy), a young woman confronting her destructive mental illness using “The Siamese Burn,” an experimental machine designed to eliminate multiple personalities. The closer Suki comes to being “cured,” she’s haunted by a thought… what if the last unwanted identity turns out to be her?”
The film is based on a 2006 graphic novel by Daniel Schaffer, who also penned the screenplay for director John Suits.
There’s also an impressive cast, which include Katie Cassidy (A Nightmare on Elm Street), Michelle Trachtenberg (Black Christmas), Eliza Dushku (Wrong Turn), Gina Gershon (Bound), Sasha Grey (Open Windows), Garret Dillahunt (The Last House on the Left, Winter’s Bone, The Road), Michael Imperioli (The Sopranos) and Billy Campbell (The Killing).
Today, Capcom released two new pieces of concept art from Resident Evil: Revelations 2 confirming that at least part of the game will be set on an island, which looks to have been outfitted with a prison. When we first revealed the possibility of an island setting, one BD reader mentioned its resemblance to the Rockfort Island from Resident Evil Code: Veronica.
Both islands have creepy, dirty prisons and they’re about the same size, but lots of islands look alike so it’s hard to tell. As cool as returning to Rockfort Island sounds, this may just be Capcom’s way of paying homage to Code: Veronica. What do you think?
Resident Evil: Revelations 2 arrives on PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One in early 2015.
It’s no secret that the hit TV show South Park has its fair share of horror-inspired episodes, not to mention the plethora of gruesome moments contained in its episodes. And back in early 2011, we ran a feature on several horror-inspired South Park episodes, which you guys seemed to love.
Now, we’ve got a different list, this time from bassist/vocalist Rich Hinks of Cambridge progressive metal band Aeon Zen.
Today, I, Rich from the band Aeon Zen, will be giving you a guide to some of the most comically gruesome moments in South Park history. Aeon Zen have just released a South Park styled music video for our new track “Unite” to support our upcoming album “Ephemera”, and have become rather intimately acquainted with all things Cartman & co.
Aeon Zen have just released their new album Ephermera, which you can purchase via iTunes.
Head below for the list!
5. Good Times With Weapons – Season 8
Any episode that features more substantial scenes of Butters is always going to fare well in my book, but it had to be included in this list purely for the gruesome appeal of the aforementioned character taking a ninja star to the eye, where it remains for the majority of the episode. An Eric Cartman “wardrobe malfunction” is always going to be enough to make it onto the South Park horror list regardless of any of the other contents anyway!
Gearing up for a the Venice Film Festival competition, check out this first clip from Gremlins director Joe Dante’s latest horror pic, Burying the Ex. I’m in love with this clip, which channels Robert Zemeckis’ classic 1992 Death Becomes Her!
It stars Fright Night‘s Anton Yelchin, Texas Chainsaw 3D‘s Alexandra Daddario, and The Apparition‘s Ashley Greene. Check out our report from the set here.
“Burying the Ex follows Max (Yelchin), an all-around nice guy, and his overbearing but incredibly beautiful girlfriend, Evelyn (Greene). Their relationship takes a nosedive after they decide to move in together and Evelyn turns out to be a controlling, manipulative nightmare. Max knows it’s time to call it quits, but there’s just one problem: he’s terrified of breaking up with her. Fate steps in when Evelyn is involved in a freak accident and dies, leaving Max single and ready to mingle. Max eventually meets Olivia (Daddario), a cute and spirited girl who just might be his soul mate, only to learn that Evelyn has risen from her grave and is determined to get her boyfriend back…even if that means turning him into one of the undead.”
Dante previous directed The Hole, which is actually a really great children’s horror film.
Killian’s master plan to bring guns back into the city, as well as his backstory, are revealed in this issue while Murphy gets closer to discovering his plan. He shares a tender moment with Officer Lewis before being hit wiped out by a monster truck. “Robocop”#3 is one of the most tonally and qualitatively consistent book out today.
WRITTEN BY: Joshua Williamson
ART BY: Carlos Magno
PUBLISHER: BOOM! Studios
RELEASE: September 3, 2014
Reviewed By Epic Switzer
Writing about “Robocop” every month is like trying to find new ways to describe a sunset; there is only so much hyperbole and beautiful language I can use to talk about something that is so perpetually fantastic. I can say that this issue in particular favors plot of action, taking time to show the Killian getting arrested and then catching us up on the cities failed attempt to control gun ownership.
I really appreciate how little time was spared in the actually investigation of it all. No doubt Killian is the villain, and Murphy pretty much immediately guesses where his stash of weapons is going to be. The book, like the movie, lets the plot serve the action and Killian, like Clarence Boddicker and Cain before him, is a despicably appropriate antagonist for Murphy. Everything is pretty cut and dry here, and I just can’t get enough of it.
Carlos Magno’s art is already beginning to feel like home. Opening this issue to the first page requires a sigh of relief, as if I’ve been wondering around for the last month trying to remember my own name. But here we are once again and issue 3 delivers, big time. I suspect some pretty disturbing and serious carnage in this book’s future and Magno is just the man for the job.
This book continues to earn top marks for consistently delivering on its promises. Not a line of dialogue is out of place, none of the characters ever do anything to to act like anyone other than themselves, the art never feels rushed or less than meticulously constructed. This book has a well defined style and genre and fits it to a T. It may not be for everyone, but it sure as hell is for me
“God Hates Astronauts” #1 is really fucking funny, I had a big shit eating grin plastered across my face the entire read. Comedy can be a real hit or miss in comics, especially outside of the funny pages. They generally come off as trying way too hard, as dry as the Mojave or break the 4th wall like a crutch. God Hates Astronauts sidesteps these potholes with ease and is as fresh as grandma’s apple pie, were she not dead.
WRITTEN BY: Ryan Browne
ART BY: Ryan Browne
PUBLISHER: Image Comics
RELEASE: September 3, 2014
Reviewed By: Torbin Chimners
First, a little GHA backstory: if I’ve got my facts straight GHA started as a webcomic that then had a massively successful Kickstarter to bring it all together in a nice hardcover book. Now I’ve never read the original webcomic and didn’t actually know about it until after I read the issue. Don’t worry, the story is easy to follow and even spends a couple pages bringing you up to speed on the world and its characters.
Our heroes are The Power Persons Five, a group of superheroes who work for a heavily fictionalized NASA to stop sexually deviant Astro-Farmers from launching themselves into space. The Astro-Farmers have been converting their silos into space ships so they can go to The Great Space God’s Moon Mansion and live there in peace and with total sexual freedom. As you’d expect these hillbilly Astro-Farmers are not rocket scientists and they basically end up arbitrarily firing themselves off into space and eventually colliding with other space ships. One of these ships happens to be Admiral Tiger Eating A Cheeseburger’s who’s killed in the space collision. His father, King Tiger Eating A Cheeseburger, is outraged and will be trouble in the future for The Power Persons Five.
Speaking of The PPF, they consist of a fat ex-cop with robot arms named Gnarled Winslow, an upside-down faced woman who can do almost anything named The Impossible and their cybernetic flaming goat headed leader: Star Grass. That’s only three people and they call themselves The Power Persons Five, you’ll figure it out as you read.
And while you read and laugh and read and laugh you’ve got some of the prettiest pictures around to accompany all of those laughs. Ryan Browne is one damn fine artist in addition to his comedy chops; I fell in love with each page more than the last. There’s a huge amount of detail on some of the pages, make sure you really take it all in because Browne has hidden numerous jokes in the background. Also be sure to read the quotes on back cover, they don’t disappoint.
God Hates Astronauts gave me some real hardy guttural laughs and if that isn’t worth 3.50 what is?
Torbin Chimners AKA Torin Chambers is a rad dude from the nineties who does film stuff or something. Thomas the Tank Engine is his favorite transformer. Find him on Twitter@Vulgar_Rhombus
Deadline reports that German actress Julie Engelbrecht (Before The Fall, Rasmus and Johanna, The Red Baron, Berlin 36) is set to make her American film debut in Lionsgate/Summit’s The Last Witch Hunter opposite Vin Diesel, Michael Caine, Elijah Wood, and Rose Leslie.
Diesel leads the fantasy actioner as an immortal witch hunter who teams with his natural enemy, a witch, to stop the covens of New York City from unleashing a plague on humanity. Engelbrecht, pictured, will do battle with Diesel in the villainous role of the Witch Queen, a part she landed after an international casting search.
The Crazies‘ Breck Eisner is directing the film from a script by Burk Sharpless and Matt Sazama (Gods Of Egypt) based on a pitch by Cory Goodman, with additional work by D.W. Harper and Dallas Buyers Club Oscar-nominee Melisa Wallack. Producers are Mark Canton, Bernie Goldmann, and Diesel while One Race’s Samantha Vincent and Adam Goldworm are exec producers. Summit will handle the film’s North American release.