Star Trek Axanar

Prelude_to_Axanar_poster.jpgWhile we await the release of the third and final new Star Trek film for some time and the upcoming streaming TV series, it may be a good time to give a closer look at the fan-funded project Star Trek Axanar.

Christian Gossett and Alec Peters utilized the resources of special effects experts and several actors and actresses familiar to fans of Star Trek and cult sci-fi in general (including Battlestar Galactica’s Richard Hatch). They raised $101,000 (well over the $10,000 goal) via Kickstarter and released Prelude to Axanar for a limited release.

Set during the Four-Year War, Axanar serves as a bridge between Enterprise and the Original Series. A glimpse is even given of NCC-1701 craft in dry dock!

Star Trek Axanar strives to accomplish something few of the Star Trek projects from Paramount has, to fit into canon. Not only does it feature actors reprising their roles, but it also sets up plot threads connecting to classic Trek stories such as Patterns of Force and Whom Gods Destroy – one of my personal faves.

This is the best thing to happen for Trek fans in decades and the screening of the 21 minute prelude earned acclaim from professional critics. Then this happened:

On December 29, 2015, CBS and Paramount Pictures filed for an injunction and damages in the US District Court for the Central District of California, stating Axanar works infringe their rights by making use of the Klingon language and “innumerable copyrighted elements of Star Trek, including its settings, characters, species, and themes.”

On March 28, 2016, Axanar Productions filed a motion to dismiss or strike Paramount and CBS’s claims, saying the elements mentioned in the court filing are not protected by copyright and it is seeking premature relief from a work, the Axanar film, that does not exist.

At a time when (reportedly) Paramount is urging its staff to refrain from making their feature films ‘too Star Trekky’ (witness the high-octane trailer for Star Trek Beyond), it is truly painful that a project like this is being shelved.

Will we see Star Trek Axanar? Given that the film’s creators worked so hard to get this project off the ground and the product to date is so good that it has Paramount suing… it’s a possibility.

Bookmark this page for more.


Electric Dreams: The World of Philip K. Dick

268ee323f1e8756717ed55d4c5681414.jpgVia CultBox: American writer Philip K. Dick (1928-1982) wrote 44 novels and 121 short stories, with the movies Blade Runner, Total Recall, A Scanner Darkly, Minority Report, Paycheck and The Adjustment Bureau all based on his works.

Bryan Cranston commented: “This is an electric dream come true. We are so thrilled to be able to explore and expand upon the evergreen themes found in the incredible work of this literary master.”

Executive producer Ronald D. Moore said: “As a long-time fan of Philip K. Dick’s work, it’s a tremendous honour and thrill to be part of this series. His short stories are a treasure-trove of material for artists to draw from and I think this will be a very exciting project.”

Dick’s daughter Isa Dick Hackett added: “I’m thrilled to be working with this exceptional team to bring my father’s short stories to life. Often the source for big, high concept feature films, these short stories represent some of the most dazzling conceptual work of his career, and the fact that they will be adapted by such a diverse set of creative voices is truly an honour.”

Electric Dreams: The World of Philip K. Dick will premiere on Channel 4 in the UK.

No word yet on a domestic release, though Netflix could be a possibility.

A look back… Nick Fury: Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. (1998)

david_hasselhoff_nick_fury.jpgAs fans across the nation (it already premiered overseas) await the release of the latest superhero epic, Captain America: Civil War, I thought it would be a good opportunity to look back to a simpler time when comic books were not looked upon as fodder for mega blockbusters. To a time when they were quickly forgotten TV movies of the week. To a time when the Hoff was Nick Fury.

At the time, Hasselhoff was in a position to reinvent himself, to a degree (keep in mind, this was Baywatch era Hoff) and acting as a tough-as-nails action hero sorta suits him. Even with the extremely limited resources, the TV movie is pretty good. It’s faithful to the source material (something fans complain about even in the face of the super successful feature films) down to the characters and vehicle designs. Aside from some cringe-worthy performances, the cast is pretty good too. And, it may be the headaches caused by eyestrain, but David Hasselhoff makes a picture perfect Nick Fury.


Nick Fury by Lee Weeks

So while we sit in the comfy recliner or stadium seats tonight (or maybe later this weekend), enjoying a scintillating display of computer graphics, brilliant cinematography and high octane acting, remember that this torch was carried by so many during a time when no one… *NO ONE* cared for the silly books. And yet, some tried to do them justice. Yes… even the Hoff (and Rex Smith, too… I guess).

First look at Lego Star Wars The Force Awakens

Happy Star Wars Day and May the Fourth Be With You.

StarWars_Lego_ForceAwakensTo celebrate, here is an 8 minute clip of the upcoming Lego Star Wars game that will adapt Episode VII: The Force Awakens. Lead through by one of the game developers, this is fun look at what is to come.

C3PO_21_panel_aPersonally, I’m excited about the PlayStation exclusive content The Phantom Limb, which could be related to the C-3PO one-shot by former Starman team James Robinson and Tony Harris.

Lego Star Wars The Force Awakens has June 28th release date and can be pre-ordered from Amazon. StarWars_Lego_ForceAwakens_PS4
I plan to attend a special event at the Baxter Barcade in wonderful Chapel Hill this evening. How will you be celebrating this May 4th?

Toys of the past: Action Man

hqdefaultWhile we had G.I. Joe Action Team in the US, across the pond Action Man by Palitoy reigned supreme. Plaid Stallions brings us this omnibus of advertising from yesteryear. Showcasing the realistic musculature, moving eyes, fuzzy beards and more, Action Man was the height of the toy doll craze (possibly topped by Captain Action, but that;’s a whole other thing).

How could this be any cooler? Tom Baker voice over at the 2:30 mark!

(Nostalgic and into odd films? You may be interested in a related article on the film Marwencol, in which a man works through his trauma with old G.I. Joe’s and develops a stunning fantasy world)


For the complete list of this week’s comics, click here.

Not sure where your local comic shop is? Try!

(note: all information including ad copy is from the publisher)
If you can’t make it to the shop, just click on any of the links below to be taken to an online retailer. I don’t get any referrals for these sales, I’m just doing my bit to spread the word on some neat products.

Doctor Who And The Dinosaur Invasion MMPB (not verified by Diamond), $7.99
Doctor Who And The Web Of Fear MMPB (not verified by Diamond), $7.99
Doctor Who And The Zarbi MMPB (not verified by Diamond), $7.99
DrWho_BattlefieldDoctor Who Battlefield MMPB (not verified by Diamond), $7.99
Doctor Who Genesis Of The Daleks MMPB (not verified by Diamond), $7.99
Doctor Who The Visitation MMPB (not verified by Diamond), $7.99
Doctor Who Vengeance On Varos MMPB (not verified by Diamond), $7.99
Klaus #5 (Of 7)(Cover A Dan Mora), $3.99
Jon Sable Freelance Omnibus Volume 3 TP, $59.95
Whisper Campaign HC (Limited Edition), $100.00
Batman And Robin Volume 7 Robin Rises TP, $19.99
Detective Comics #52 (Guillem March Regular Cover), $3.99
Midnighter_12Midnighter #12, $2.99
Survivors’ Club #8, $3.99
Unfollow #7, $3.99
Will Eisner’s The Spirit #10 (Cover A Eric Powell), $3.99
Complete Peanuts Volume 25 1999-2000 HC, $29.99
Hip Hop Family Tree #9 (not verified by Diamond), $3.99
HeavyMetal_280.jpgHeavy Metal #280 (Cover A Brian Ewing)(not verified by Diamond), $7.95
We Stand On Guard Deluxe HC, $24.99
Wicked + The Divine #19 (Cover A Jamie McKelvie & Matt Wilson), $3.50
Amazing Spider-Man #12 (Alex Ross Regular Cover), $3.99
BlackWidow_3.jpgBlack Widow #3 (Chris Samnee Regular Cover), $3.99
Captain America Sam Wilson #9, $3.99
Contest Of Champions #8 (Scott Rahzzah Wilson), $3.99
Daredevil By Mark Waid And Chris Samnee Volume 5 HC, $34.99
Daredevil Punisher #1 (Of 4), $4.99
MoonKnight_2.jpgMoon Knight #2 (Greg Smallwood Regular Cover), $3.99
685310_punisher-1-christopher-action-figure-variant.jpgPunisher #1 (Alex Maleev Variant Cover), AR
Star Wars Poe Dameron #2 (Declan Shalvey Variant Cover), $3.99
Kolchak Dan Shamble Zombie PI #1 (Cover A Dennis Calero), $4.99
Artof_CharlieChanHockChyeArt Of Charlie Chan Hock Chye HC (Signed Bookplate Edition), $30.00
Doctor Who The Tenth Doctor Year Two #9 (Cover B Photo), $3.99
Star Wars Insider Magazine #165 (Newsstand Edition), $7.99

“You wonder what I see in your future? Possibility.”


The first wave of films from the Marvel Cinematic Universe established a rich history of science fiction, fantasy, high adventure and history. Marvel is now ushering in its latest wave with an exploration into the realm of magic with the sorcerer supreme, Doctor Strange.

One of the founding members of the interconnected Marvel comic book world, Doctor Strange began as the central star in a horror-themed suspenseful component of the Strange Tales comic. Whenever a lost and damaged soul found themselves facing a problem too dangerous and otherworldly for anyone else, they would visit a spooky house that appeared to only be partially visible and ask for the assistance of Doctor Strange. The guardian of our realm of reality against the dark forces of the beyond, Doctor Strange battled monsters and forces far outside of human knowledge.

But his beginnings were far more humble and tragic. The upcoming blockbuster film stars Sherlock star Benedict Cumberbatch, co-starring Chiwetel Ejiofo as Baron Mordo, Mads Mikkelsen as the main villain Kaecilius and Tilda Swinton as the Ancient One. Directed by Scott Derrickson (The Exorcism of Emily Rose) with a script by Jon Spaihts (Prometheus), the movie will serve as the first glimpse into yet another facet of the dynamic and colorful world of Marvel Comics.

The arrogant and selfish Stephen Strange was a gifted surgeon who only used his gifts for personal gain. So brash is Strange that he smokes (again) in the operating room! After cannily finagling a business deal out of what should have been pro bono work, Strange is involved in a horrible car accident that robs him of his talented hands. Refusing to be anything but a brilliant surgeon, Strange spends all of his money foolishly attempting to heal his hands with no success. Strange ends up a vagrant, hopelessly wandering the streets until he hears of the ‘Ancient One’ who may hold some solution in far off Tibet.

Strange manages to find his way to the far off land and also to the home of the Ancient One but still has not learned humility. In the home of the wise seer, he meets the Ancient One’s pupil, Baron Mordo… who is definitely evil. Mordo has plans for the Ancient One that will result in him stealing the old man’s power from him, leaving Mordo as the Sorcerer Supreme. Strange elects to stay on in order to somehow stop Mordo. Somehow Strange side-steps learning humility to discovering that the energy fueling his immense ego can instead be transferred to something akin to courage. – Via DP Quick Review in 2010

Doctor Strange has a 4th of November 2016 release date.

Alex Reviews The Mad Hatter!

20150824_AlexFirstDayMy son has released his second video review, this time focusing on that dastardly chapeau-obsessed fiend, the Mad Hatter.

While the review focuses on a toy based on the character from the 1966 Batman TV series, Alex takes the time to provide a brief primer on a character who is a bit more complicated than one might think. Initially created as an impish villain inspired by his namesake from Alice in Wonderland, a second Hatter was introduced a decade later with no ties to Lewis Carroll’s work but a burning need to posses all hats, especially Batman’s cowl.

Portrayed by David Wayne, then a hot commodity, the Mad Hatter appeared in two stories, one focused on getting revenge on the jury who convicted him and a follow up in which he irradiates Batman’s cowl, turning it pink. Armed with a top hat that housed a secret mesmerizing beam, the Mad Hatter was a formidable foe for the caped crusader and just weird enough to be fondly remembered. An unusual and quirky character, he has proven popular enough to still have an appeal, even to a seven year old kid.

Watch the review here!


Are you a Doctor Who enthusiast? A padawan or master for Star Wars? Addicted to comics or a fan of video games? This week is your week, as is every week at your local comic book shop.

For the complete list of this week’s comics, click here.

Not sure where your local comic shop is? Try!

(note: all information including ad copy is from the publisher)
If you can’t make it to the shop, just click on any of the links below to be taken to an online retailer. I don’t get any referrals for these sales, I’m just doing my bit to spread the word on some neat products.

684321_actionverse-1.jpgActionverse #1 (Of 6)(Featuring The F1rst Hero)(Cover A Lee Moder & Stressing), $3.99
Adventure Time #51 (Cover B Mia Schwartz), $3.99
Abe Sapien #32, $3.50
Alabaster The Good The Bad And The Bird #5 (Of 5), $3.99
Lone Wolf And Cub Omnibus Volume 12 TP, $19.99
Star Wars The Force Awakens Read Along Storybook With CD SC, $6.99
Star Wars The Force Awakens Storybook HC, $16.99
Star Wars The Force Awakens Tales From A Galaxy Far Far Away HC, $12.99
Doc Savage The Spider’s Web #5 (Of 5)(Cover A Wilfredo Torres), $3.99
jan160398.jpgStar Trek The Classic UK Comics Volume 1 HC, $49.99
Jupiter’s Circle Volume 2 #5 (Of 6)(Cover B Frank Quitely), $3.50
Limbo #6 (Of 6), $2.99
Manhattan Projects Volume 6 TP, $14.99
Monstress #5, $3.99
No Mercy #9, $3.99
Pretty Deadly #9, $3.50
681862_64100e49eebbfe60c48c7fcc07e42078e26ae1b2All-New All-Different Avengers #8 (Alex Ross Regular Cover), $3.99
All-New Inhumans #6, $3.99
All-New X-Men #8, $3.99
681861_5f9c7ad57f18ebcfab6fe8ecac1e5f0bfb684b60.jpgAmazing Spider-Man #10 (Alex Ross Regular Cover), $3.99
Black Widow #1 (Chris Samnee 2nd Printing Variant Cover), $3.99
Captain America 75th Anniversary Magazine #1 (Alex Ross Cover), $9.99
Darth Vader #19, $3.99
Gwenpool #1 (Francisco Herrera Variant Cover), AR
Hercules #6, $3.99
Illuminati #6, $3.99
Mockingbird #2 (Joelle Jones Regular Cover), $3.99
Old Man Logan #3 (Andrea Sorrentino 2nd Printing Variant Cover), $3.99
Red Wolf #5, $3.99
Uncanny X-Men #4 (Greg Land 2nd Printing Variant Cover), $3.99
Web Warriors #6, $3.99
681896_410a463d9166bec563fb14f7fd2a8c89e502d0cb.jpgWeirdworld #5, $3.99
Burne Hogarth’s Tarzan Volume 3 Versus The Nazis HC, $39.95
dec151586.jpgDoctor Who The Eleventh Doctor Volume 4 The Then And Now HC, $19.99
Doctor Who The Ninth Doctor #1 (Cover A Shea Standefer), $3.99
Marvel HeroClix Captain America Civil War Starter Set, $24.99
AUG152567.jpgMega Man Blueprint Previews Exclusive Royal Heather T-Shirt SM, AR
jan162772.jpgX-Files I Want To Believe Pint Glass, AR


For the complete list of this week’s comics, click here.

Not sure where your local comic shop is? Try!

(note: all information including ad copy is from the publisher)
If you can’t make it to the shop, just click on any of the links below to be taken to an online retailer. I don’t get any referrals for these sales, I’m just doing my bit to spread the word on some neat products.

Irwin Allen’s Lost In Space #1 (Cover A Steve Stanley), $3.99
EC Archives Shock SuspenStories Volume 1 HC, $49.99
Eerie Archives Volume 21 HC, $49.99
Eerie Comics Volume 1 Close Encounters Of The Spooky Kind TP, $19.99
Aquaman Volume 6 Maelstrom TP, $19.99
Astro City #33, $3.99
Batman And Robin Eternal #24, $2.99
Batman Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #3 (Of 6)(Freddie E. Williams II 2nd Printing Variant Cover)(not verified by Diamond), 3.99
Robin Son Of Batman #10 (Patrick Gleason & Mick Gray Regular Cover), $3.99
Will Eisner’s The Spirit #9 (Cover A Eric Powell), $3.99
PatienceDan Clowes’ Patience HC, $29.99
Alex Raymond An Artistic Journey Adventure Intrigue And Romance HC, $75.00
Nameless.jpgNameless HC, $24.99
ODY-C #10, $3.99
All-New X-Men #6, $3.99
Captain America Omnibus Volume 2 HC (John Romita Sr. Direct Market Variant Cover), $99.99
Power Man And Iron Fist #2 (Sanford Greene Regular Cover), $3.99
secretWarsSecret Wars HC, $50.00
Squadron Supreme #5 (Alex Garner Regular Cover), $3.99
Pre-Code Classics Web Of Evil Volume 3 HC (Slipcase Edition), $69.99
Roy Thomas Presents Planet Comics Volume 12 HC (Slipcase Edition), $69.99
Judge Dredd The Complete Case Files Volume 11 TP, $19.99
Nikopol Trilogy Volume 1 HC, $34.99
Star Wars Jedi Master Magazine #3, $4.99
Marvel HeroClix Gamma Smash Monthly Organized Play Kit, AR
Star Trek Attack Wing Void Monthly Organized Play Kit, AR
Back To The Future 30th Anniversary Minimates 1985 Box Set, AR
BacktotheFuture_Minimate.jpgBack To The Future 30th Anniversary Time Machine Minimates, AR
Batman 1966 Batgirl Maquette Diorama, AR
BatgirlBatman Classic Batwoman Maquette, AR