Star Trek VI: The Rotten DC Country

As you can see, you have found yourself on Rotten Ink and on another trip down memory lane with the crew of the USS Enterprise as this time around we will be talking about Star Trek VI that has Captain Kirk and his crew once more at odds with Klingons when he is framed for the murder of a high ranking Klingon. And like most of the past films in the series, DC Comics was the company who took up the task of making the adaptation. This sixth film has an interesting back story of cheap budget, anniversary and even rumors of a star taking naughty photos on the set, so with those teasers lets get to the bridge and take flight through space with Captain Kirk and his crew as we try and beat a murder wrap and find that undiscovered country.

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So let’s take a few moments and talk about the film Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country. I will be taking the films write up from our pals at IMDB, and then I will talk about the films production as well as a little about my thoughts on the film. So let’s jump to warp speed and talk part six.

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Star Trek VI: Undiscovered Country (1991)

“On the eve of retirement, Kirk and McCoy are charged with assassinating the Klingon High Chancellor and imprisoned. The Enterprise crew must help them escape to thwart a conspiracy aimed at sabotaging the last best hope for peace.”

The fifth film in the series was a disappointment at the box office for Paramount Pictures and the future of the Star Trek films was on shaky ground, but they knew that they needed to do something as the series 25th Anniversary was coming up and they wanted to do something to celebrate it but also did not want to spend a lot of money on a new film. And then ideas and scripts started to be pitched and considered with the first one being about The Starfleet Academy and would feature younger versions of Kirk, Spock and other characters from the classic series and would have focused mostly on Doctor McCoy who would be telling the story of how they all meet to recruits at the academy. And this cool idea was viewed very negatively by most of the original cast, heads at Paramount and even Gene Roddenberry himself and this caused Harve Bennett to be fired from Star Trek projects. And during this time even Walter Koening tried to create a new script that would have Starfleet and the Romulans teaming up to go to war with the Klingons and would see almost all the cast die in the end besides Spock and McCoy…this as well was not green lighted nor was an idea for the original cast to meet the cast of Star Trek The Next Generation. And it was an idea by Leonard Nimoy and the screenplay by director Nicholas Meyer that ended up being the bases for the sixth film in the series.

After the screenplay was locked Paramount gave the film the small budget of only $27million and filming started April 16, 1991 and needed to wrap on September 27, 1991 as Paramount wanted the film in theaters in December for a Holiday release. And during filming many coast cutting measures was used to keep the film in the given budget and they even filmed some parts at the iconic Bronson Canyon in California that has been the set for many iconic TV Shows and Movies over the years including such Horror and Sci-Fi films as “White Zombie (1932)”, “The Vampire Bat (1933)”. “Robot Monster (1953)”, “Invasion Of The Body Snatchers (1956)”, “Return Of Dracula (1958)”, “Equinox (1970)” and “Army Of Darkness (1992)” to name a very small few. I should also note that many classic heroes films, shows and serials has been shot here as well like Superman, Batman. Dick Tracy, Flash Gordon and Captain Marvel. The film would be scored by Cliff Eidelman and it would be released in theaters of December 6, 1991 and was meet with mostly positive reviews from critics as well as fans. But one sad thing is that Gene Roddenberry would pass away on October 24, 1991 at the age of 70 from heart failure and never got to see the film released. Star Trek VI would go on to bring in $96,888,996.00 worldwide and be the # 15 top grossing films in 1991 beating out such films as JFK, What About Bob?. Boyz In The Hood, The Rocketeer, Thelma & Louise, Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare, People Under The Stairs, Child’s Play 3, Ernest Scared Stupid, Drop Dead Fred and Suburban Commando to name a few. Over the years this film is also considered one of the best in the Original Cast Star Trek films and is still talked about and respected to this day. And I can see why I have always liked this film and have good memories once more of seeing the film in school and enjoying it for all the strange moments of the prison and the aliens that made it up. This film is also iconic for me as it marks the final film that features the classic crew all together and truly marks the end of a era of Science Fiction characters for me as while I like the reboots of Star Trek no once can replace these actors in those roles.

Star Trek VI is such a fun film and from the first time I seen it via renting it on VHS when released I was a fan as I felt that it was a great story that once more pitted Captain Kirk against the Klingons and really built up the bond and friendship between Kirk and McCoy. While the cast was getting older it was awesome to see the character they played as well grow as well as be promoted and yet all still remain friends and stick by each other during the ups and downs. It’s crazy to thank that this film is the last to feature all of the original cast together and while it’s not my favorite film in the series I feel that it was a fun one to go out on as it brings Captain Kirk and the Klingons back together and a healing moment happens for Kirk. I also think that casting David Warner as the Klingon High Council member Gorkon was very cool as I knew him from the films Tron, The Omen, Nightwing, Time Bandits, Waxwork and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: Secret Of The Ooze and seeing him as a Klingon was fun. And growing up I owned this film on VHS and later DVD, I also had the paperback and comic adaptations as well as the films score on CD. I need to also point out that while they cut the films budget very low the film does not feel cheap, just a little less polished than the other films in the series. If you have not seen this film and enjoy Classic Star Trek make sure to give this one a watch.

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Like all Star Trek films the merchandise machine was in full effect as they wanted to make a little extra money off it just in case if the box office numbers needed help. And besides the comic and of course home media release you also got the soundtrack, magazines, toys, novel, posters and shirts and like all other Star Trek movie merchandise that came before it fans flocked to buy it all up. And over the years I have had and have much of this as I still own the film on DVD as well as many of the toys, the novel and soundtrack. And at one point I had a few magazines featuring the film. I must say I do really like the classic Playmates Star Trek toys as they were well done for the time and covered all eras of the classic series and films. So if you are a fan of Star Trek VI, make sure to track down some of its merchandise for your collection.

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Ok before we move onto the comic review part of this Star Trek themed update we need to talk about the fact that actress Kim Cattrall and her character Valeris are super attractive in this film I mean Kim was already a 80’s Actress Sex Symbol with her roles in such films as Police Academy, Big Trouble In Little China, Mannequin and Honeymoon Academy to name a few all adding to movie goers noticing her beauty. And when she took a roll in the then newest Star Trek film the world of Sci-Fi started to really take notice of her looks and her acting talent. And man did she look great as a Vulcan and in a Star Fleet Office uniform! And come on any of you fellow Trekkies out there know just how great it is to see an attractive woman in a Trek uniform. Rumor has it that Leonard Nimoy was not a fan of Kim’s on set as he thought she was driven by ego and again just a rumor is that she and her boyfriend at the time took sexy pictures of herself on the USS Enterprise set and this was the final straw for Nimoy who caught her doing so and forced them to destroy the pictures and made it that she would never work on a Star Trek project again…but again this was all just a rumor. But one thing is for sure and that’s Kim made her mark in the world of Star Trek and looked good doing it.

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Well I think we are at the point to travel to that Undiscovered Country with the crew of the USS Enterprise and DC Comics and see how this comic adaptation compares to the film it’s based on. And this is a comic I am looking forward to re-reading as its been a very long time sense I did so, and I also would like to thank Mavericks Cards And Comics for having this comic in stock and making this update possible. I would like to also remind you that I grade these comics on a star scale of 1 to 4 and am looking for how well the comics stay to the source material, it’s entertainment value and it’s art and story. So if you are ready lets head to the criminal trail of Captain Kirk and Doctor McCoy and see how and if they can beat the murder rap they are on the hook for.

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Star Trek VI # 1
Released in 1991     Cover Price $2.95     DC Comics     # 1 of 1

Captain Sulu and his crew have just finished up a three year mission and as they are returning an explosion from a Klingon owned moon rocks the star ship and worse when they call the planet to see if they need help the Klingons refuse it, and Sulu ends up calling for the Starfleet for help. Days pass and at a big Starfleet meeting Spock gives a speech about helping The Klingons who’s ozone is damaged after the moon explosion and that in 50 Years their planet will be unlivable and that Klingon Ambassador Gorkon is willing to call for peace in order to get help, and the Starfleet are torn on if they should trust them and help and Captain Kirk is against helping them! But after talk they majority vote to help and Spock has volunteered Kirk and the Enterprise to host Gorkon through federation territory and to the meeting, Kirk is not happy as he hates them but does so with his classic crew as well a new crew member Valeris a Vulcan who graduated at the top of her class. That evening Captain Kirk and the Enterprise Crew host Gorkon and his crew for dinner and that includes General Chang who clearly does not like Kirk, and the dinner ends in arguments between the two sides. Latter the ship of Gorkon is attacked by torpedo’s being fired by the Enterprise to Kirk and the crews shock as well as two masked men beam aboard the Klingon ship and shoot and kill Gorkon! After the attack General Chang blames Kirk for the attack as well as Doctor McCoy who tired to medically help Gorkon for his murder and this forces the two to be put to trial via Klingon law and are found guilty and sent to a frozen prison planet. Meanwhile Spock, Valeris, Scotty, Uhura and Chekov are all trying to figure out what happened as the ships computers are conflicting with each other on if the torpedo’s came from the Enterprise as well as some interference is keeping them from talking with Starfleet. While on the frozen prison planet Kirk and McCoy meet female alien Martia who fills them in on the rules of this prison, while on the Enterprise Spock leads a search of the ship in order to find the assassins. Kirk and McCoy are able to escape the prison with the help of Martia who was a spy for the Klingons and is killed during the escape and are beamed back to the Enterprise where they have discovered that a new cloaked Klingon Bird Of Prey ship is the one who fired the torpedo’s and that Valeris is the one who was the traitor of the Enterprise and helped set up the assassination. Kirk gets the help of Sulu and they head to the peace talks as another assassination is going to take place and they bring down General Chang who was one of the masterminds behind this framing of Kirk and is in the Bird Of Prey that is now blown up that fired on Gorkon’s ship. Once at the peace talks Kirk and his crew stop the assassination and expose the members of both sides that wanted the peace talks to fail, and Kirk forgives the Klingons for the death of his son and as all things change for the good Kirk knows this was the final ride for the Enterprise with him in as Captain.

This comic adaptation is very well done and DC Comics once more proved that they knew how to adapt the Star Trek films into comics! The plot is best summed up this way Captain Kirk and Dr. McCoy are framed for the murder of a high ranking Klingon and are sent to a prison planet were they have to try and escape the clear their names and expose the Klingon traitor who has set up the whole thing to cause more tension and possible war between Starfleet and the Klingons as he thinks his people have gone soft. This plot is very cool and is kind of deep as it shows Race Tension between several different alien races and shows that all people are the same and there is good and bad in everyone as we all have the goal of just living our lives, and it also shows that people will come together for a common goal and that can be something positive or something foul. Captain Kirk goes from being very angry and hating the Klingon race for the death of his son, and by the end learns that forgiveness and change is what is best for the galaxy. And like always Kirk is a ladies man and a hero and risks his life several time in order to escape and do the right thing and that’s solve a murder, make sure peace is meet and to clear his name of murder. Doctor McCoy who does not trust the Klingon’s does do his best to save the life of one, but does not understand the biology of them and is not able to help. Spock along with Scotty, Uhura and Chekov do what they can to solve this murder mystery and of course figure it all out and save lives and Spock is the key to help Kirk grow as a person. Valeris and General Chang are the two masterminds behind the killing of Gorkon as they both on the side that The Klingons and Starfleet should never trust each other and that being at war is what is needed. I think what is great is that General Chang is so ego driven that even before he is blown up he is bragging and thinking he is in charge of the battle, such a great and sleazy bad guy. The comic does a great job of keeping the pace of the story going and yet also keeps all the important speeches and exchanges between characters. I also have to say that while they are around Sulu, Scotty, Uhura and Chekov do kind of seem like background players in the issue as they are helpful and around they just are not major players in the issue. The cover for this issue is awesome and showcases all the major character from the film and the interior artwork done by Gordon Purcell is really good and he does a great job of capturing the likeness of the actors. Over all a great comic adaptation and is a very fun and entertaining read. Checkout the artwork below to see the style of Purcell.

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Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country is a great film and as you can see DC Comics did a great job of turning the movie into a fun comic and capturing the mood and adventure elements of the film on paper. I also want to say that I was really sad hearing about the passing of Nichelle Nichols in 2022 who played Uhura, as she was an amazing actress and will be missed. But with the review coming to an end it also makes me a little sad as we only have one more film and comic adaptation that features the some of the cast of the original series to cover and of course that is Star Trek: Generations and we will be covering that in 2024. But as our time with Captain Kirk and the crew come to an end I want to let you know that the next update will take us out of space and into the wrestling ring as we take a look at George “The Animal” Steele and kick off our year long celebration of Pro Wrestling and WWF WrestleMania! So until next time read a Star Trek comic or three, watch a Star Trek film or two and as always support your local Horror Host. See you next update and lets hope that Turnbuckles is not the only snack food offered at the Rotten Ink Arena snack bar!

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Matt Goes To The Movies 2022

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Happy New Year! It’s crazy to think that 2023 is here already and as you can see, we are here again at the Rotten Ink Theater to talk about the films that I saw in the cinema. It was once more a great year of films, and movie studios have been turning up the great amount of Horror films that have graced the silver screen. But while 2022 over all was a great year, it also brought a little sadness for me as early in the year my best friend and lovable cat Leslie passed away at the age of 16…it was hard losing her as she really was a one of a kind cat who grew up watching Horror Films with me and I had her since she was a baby kitten. I really do miss her every day.  The year then ended with another big loss, as around the holidays, my cat Streets J passed away at the age of 14.  Streets was a lovable goofball who my girlfriend and I rescued as a stray off the streets of downtown Dayton.  If you’ve read Sparkle Comics’ Defenders of the Planets series, there’s a character based on Streets.   But enough of the sad stuff as we are all here to talk movies! I saw some great films at such theaters as Cinemark Dayton South, Cinemark The Greene, Little Art Theatre and Regal Cinema, and each of these theaters deliver a different watching experience and are all awesome in their own ways. And like before I will be breaking this Best Of List by genre, and please remember that there might be some spoilers, so read on if you don’t mind. So let’s grab some popcorn and a drink and find our seats and sit back and relax and talk some movies!

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For me nothing beats seeing a film in the theater and all this Direct To Streaming stuff is not for me as I love the theater experience, so let’s start off with taking a look at the Drama films I saw this year.

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# 2

Death On The Nile (2022) Poster

The world’s greatest detective Hercule Poirot finds himself invited to the wedding of Simon Dotle and Linnet Rideway that is taking place in Egypt, but along with the wedding guests is Jackie de Bellefort who was Simon’s ex-fiance and one time best friend of Linnet’s as the two love birds hooked up when Jackie made the mistake of introducing them to each other. And once the wedding party all find themselves guests on a private boat cruise, Jackie is also on board. After a fight with Simon, she shoots and wounds her ex and later that night Linnet is killed in her sleep and now Poirot must uncover the dark secrets of all the guests as Linnet informed him before her death that she did not trust any of them and this makes the world’s greatest detective have to work over time in order to solve this murder case. This movie is fantastic and just like “Murder On The Orient Express” is a great way to get modern moviegoers into Hercule Poirot. The film is very well cast with Kenneth Branagh once more playing Hercule Poirot with other names like Gal Gadot, Armie Hammer, Russell Brand, Letitia Wright, Emma Mackey and Jennifer Saunders to name a few. The film did okAY at the American box office bringing in $45,630,104.00 on a budget of $90million. This is a great watch, and if you love who-done-it detective films, make sure to give this one a watch.

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Elvis (2022) Poster

Col. Robert Parker was a conman who is blamed by many as the man who killed Elvis as he pushed the classic music legend with a constant flow of drugs in order to get him on the stage so that he could make money. And Elvis’s star grows the more Parker tries to control not only his career but his life, and this film touches on the rise and fall of Elvis from innovator musician to addict, and this perspective comes from the side of Parker as he is the one narrating the movie played by Tom Hanks. This is a very entertaining film for fans of Elvis and while they do bend some truths as well as mix up some dates, this still is one that I truly enjoyed! The film stars Austin Butler as Elvis Presley and he does a fantastic job, also on the cast is Olivia DeJonge, David Wenham and Helen Thomson. This film was directed by Baz Luhrmann and makes great use of Elvis’ music for the soundtrack. The film did really well for Warner Brothers at the American Box Office bringing in $151,040,048 on a $85 million budget. If you like Elvis and want to see a different take on his life and death, give this one a watch.

As you can see I did not get to the theater that much for drama films and for me Elvis took that # 1 top spot as I felt that it was a great film and one that was best I saw on the Silver Screen. So with that, let’s take a look at the Comedies I saw in the theater in 2022 and see what took the # 1 spot and gave me the biggest belly laugh!

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# 3

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Actor Nicolas Cage is in a slump when it comes to acting roles and worse, his personal life with his wife and teenage daughter is not going good. In order to get some money to help him get out of debt, he takes a booking to be a guest at a millionaire named Javi Gutierrez’s birthday party…and the two quickly become good friends and start working on a film idea. But Cage is also working for the U.S. government as they think that Javi is a crime lord for a weapon and drug group who has kidnapped the daughter of a presidential candidate in Spain…but is he really a criminal or is he really just a fan of Cage and cinema in general? Watch this silly action comedy to find out. This film had some really funny moments and in fact Nicolas Cage, who is playing a parody of himself, was fantastic and shows why the actor has such a big cult following. While I did think the film would be funnier then it was, I still think many of the moments hit the spot and tickled my funny bone. The film is cast well with names like Pedro Pascal, Tiffany Haddish, Neil Patrick Harris, Lily Sheen and Sharon Horgan with cameos from Demi Moore and David Gordon Green. The film did okay for Lionsgate at the American box office bringing in $20,300,157.00 on a budget of $30 million. If you are a big fan of Nicolas Cage and enjoy goofy comedy action films, then make sure to check this one out.

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Johnny Knoxville and his goofball cohorts along with newer thrill seekers once more tackle crazy stunts with some being borderline dangerous all to get a laugh from the audience. They run across raging animals like bulls, snakes, scorpions and vultures. They put their private parts through extreme measures, and of course they crash, fall, ram and smack their way through funny moments. Of course they have guest cameos like Tony Hawk and Machine Gun Kelly who get wrapped up in the overall silliness of the pranks and stunts. It was cool seeing the likes of Steve-O, Chris Pontius, Wee Man, Dave England, Preston Lacy, Danger Ehren and even a cameo from Bam Margera doing what made them famous to teens and early 20 somethings of the 2000. It was a little sad not seeing more of Bam and his crew being involved, but being out of control like he is will make you lose jobs. The film is a mixed bag of funny stunts and ones that fall flat and the new cast for the most part are nice additions. The best stunts in my book are called “Silence Of The Lambs” and “The Cup Test;” watch the movie and see what they are about. The film did good for Paramount at the America box office bringing in $57,743,451.00 on a budget of $10 million dollars. A fun raunchy reality stunt comedy film that will surely please the fans of the TV show as well as the other films in the series, plus for those of us who grew up with the show will feel very old.

# 1

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Bob and Linda Belcher go to the bank and cannot get an extension on paying back some of their loan for the restaurant and must come up with the money in a short amount of time, but things go terribly wrong for them when a giant sink hole opens up in front and a dead body is found inside it. The murder is blamed on their landlord Mr. Fischoeder and all this causes no one to come in for a burger, making their goal to save the restaurant seem very grim. But their kids Tina, Gene and Louise are on the case to probe that Mr. Fischoeder did not commit the murder while Bob and Linda listen to their friend and best customer Teddy’s idea of doing a Bob’s Burgers food cart in order to get the money. All this comes together as things work out for the Belcher family and the true murderer is found and captured and the restaurant is saved. I should also say that the Belcher kids as well have their own drama going on as Louise wants to prove she is brave, Gene doubts his music ability and Tina struggles with asking Jimmy Pesto Jr. to be her summer boyfriend. This is a fun film and is a must see for fans of the TV show as it fits right in with its silly plot, musical numbers and zany characters. The film did all right for 20th Century at the U.S box office bringing in $31,933,830.00 on an unknown budget. A great attempt to bring Bob’s Burgers from the TV screen to the big screen, and I hope it gets a sequel.

You have to love Bob’s Burgers as it’s a fun animated TV series that made a great leap to being on the big screen with the series’ first feature film. I do have to say also that all three of the comedies I saw on the big screen in 2022 were very funny and fantastic! Now it’s time to take a look at Action Films! And we had some good ones…

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# 5

Lost City (2022) Poster

Romance novel writer Loretta Sage is on a book tour when she is kidnapped by billionaire Abigail Fairfax due to her now passed away husband’s knowledge of ancient cultures, and set to save her is Alan Caprison, the cover model for her romance books and while a dimwit he means well….now can the two escape the jungle and avoid being killed? Will Loretta find true love again? And will they really find the lost treasure! Watch this Romancing The Stone style film and find out. This is a fun Action Comedy film as the humor works as do the action moments of their adventures to get away from their captors. The film is well cast with such names as Sandra Bullock, Channing Tatum, Daniel Radcliffe, Brad Pitt and Da’Vine Joy Randolph all in big roles. The film did well for Paramount Pictures at the US box office bringing in $105,344,029.00 on a $68 million dollar budget. This was a very fun film and a big surprise on just how much I enjoyed it, and I will say that the Brad Pitt cameo as rescuer Jack Trainer was great stuff.

# 4

Uncharted (2022) Poster

Nathan Drake has always been good at history and has always wanted to find lost treasure and go on big adventures like his older brother.  He gets the chance when he meets Sully, and the pair team up to find the hidden treasure that takes them across the world as well as makes them targets of billionaire Santiago Moncada and his hired hand Jo Braddock. But Nathan and Sully are also joined by Chloe Frazer, a fellow treasure hunter that they might not fully be able to trust. The film then takes the viewer on an action packed adventure filled with twist, turns, backstabs, murder and of course treasure and is of course based on the popular Sony Playstation video game series. This is such a fun thrill ride and for me it was like it took the adventure elements of such films as The Mummy (1999), Indiana Jones and Tomb Raider and rolled them together to deliver a big budget action ride that was a blast to see on the big screen and to be honest it did the game justice. The film stars Tom Holland, Mark Wahlberg, Sophia Ali, Antonio Banderas and Tati Gabrielle and all do a fantastic job. The film did well for Sony at the American box office bringing in $148,648,820.00 on a $120 million budget. This clearly will become a franchise, and I am very much looking forward to a sequel as this film leaves us on a cliffhanger revel.

# 3

Bullet Train (2022) Poster

Ladybug is an assassin who has been sent on a mission to get a briefcase off a bullet train. But what should have been an easy mission turns into a very dangerous trip as other killers and assassins are also on the train, and many of them want him dead or want the case as well…and the kicker is at the end of the line The White Death, one of Japan’s most feared crime lords, and his men are waiting for those who are on the train as the briefcase belongs to him and so does a person on the train….and now Ladybug must find away to get off this train alive, finish his mission and possibly trust some of those on the train as a battle with White Death is on the horizon. This movie is awesome as it’s a great mix of action and comedy and was one hell of a great film to watch on the big screen. I took a bunch of friends with me to see this one and we all had such a blast. The comedy moments work really well, and the action as well is fast passed and well done! The film also has an all star cast with Brad Pitt, Sandra Bullock, Bad Bunny, Zazie Beetz, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Brian Tyree Henry, Hiroyuki Sanada and Joey King, and all are fantastic in their rolls. The film did alright for Sony at the American box office bringing in $103,368,602 on a budget $90 million budget. If you have not seen this film and like fast paced action comedies, then make sure to check this one out, as it is truly a blast.

# 2

Violent Night (2022) Poster

On Christmas Eve the Lightstone family is gathering at the family mansion, but things get crazy when a man calling himself Mr. Scrooge shows up with heavily armed associates and hold the family hostage to get $3 million that is suppose to be in the family safe. But what these naughty baddies didn’t count on is for Trudy, the youngest of the Lightstone family, to call on Santa Claus for help and he deals out more than coal for these evildoers. Santa, armed with his fleeing Christmas cheer (due to kids only wanting money and video games), his magic and a sledge hammer goes on a rescue mission in the style of John Wick! Can Santa save the Lightsones and find his Christmas Spirit again? Watch this super fun, violent action comedy film and find out. Wow, this is a Christmas classic for sure as it is over the top, lots of fun and showcases Santa Claus as a full fledged action hero who takes down the naughty kidnappers in brutal fashion. The film is well casted with David Harbour as Santa Claus, John Leguizamo as Mr. Scrooge and other cast members including Beverly D’Angelo, Leah Brady, Alex Hassell, Andre Eriksen and Mitra Suri, to name a few. And the film was a big hit with everyone I saw it with in the theater as people were laughing throughout. The film did well for Universal at the American box office bringing in around $48,060,295 (as of this update) on a budget of only $20 million. This is one you have to see if you like over the top action and/or Christmas movies.

# 1

top gun maverick Poster

Maverick is working for the Navy as a test pilot, and after breaking orders on flying a super fast test jet, he is sent to be a instructor at Top Gun as his rebellious nature has caused him to almost being fired and if not for Admiral Iceman Kazansky, he would have been! Now he must get a group of top recruits ready for what could be a suicide mission to blow up a reactor core at an enemy base before it can cause serious harm. But these young pilots have a lot to learn and need to work together and not try to be the shining stars as this is very dangerous and will take lots of skill. And for Maverick, this class is even harder as the son (Rooster) of his former wingman Goose is in the class and blames Maverick for the being held back from joining Top Gun and ranking up for years. Can Maverick get these pilots in shape? Can Rooster forgive and find out the truth? Can they make this mission a success? Watch this amazing sequel to find out! Top Gun 2 took many decades to get made, and when it was finally was made and released they hit a home run as this film was well written and felt like it was right in the groove of the original allowing us to catch back up with Maverick, Iceman and even Rooster. The film of course brought back Tom Cruise and Val Kilmer in their famous roles but also in the cast included Miles Teller, Jennifer Connelly, Jon Hamm, Monica Barbaro, Glen Powell and Ed Harris to name a few. The film did amazing for Paramount at the American box office bringing in $718,732,821 on a budget of $170 million. If you love the original film or just like films about the Navy or military in general that adds a dash of drama, make sure to watch this film. I have to also say that it was great seeing Val Kilmer on the big screen again, and it was great that the production worked around his health limitations.

Really action this year was packed with some great watches and really for me Top Gun: Maverick was just such a fun watch and shows that sequels beat remakes any day. But now I think its time that we see what the world of Sci-Fi and Fantasy had to offer in the theaters in 2022, and I will give you a hint there were lots of great ones.

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# 3

Northman (2022) Poster

Amleth was once a young prince who watched his uncle kill his father The King in order to take the throne, and Amleth ends up running for his life and ends up becoming a part of a Viking tribe with the goal of avenging his father’s death as well as saving his mother from his uncle’s side. As Amleth has gotten older, his skills as a fighter have grown and he is now a unstoppable warrior who along the way back for revenge meets and falls in love with Olga, a sorceress who has been taken as a slave. Once he catches up with his uncle, he finds that he has ruined the kingdom and now he and his people live on farmland in the middle of nowhere. With the help of a magical sword, he takes out those close to his uncle, fathers a child, finds out the truth about his mother and fulfills his destiny of revenge and arriving in Valhalla. This is very much a modern take on the classic Barbarian films of the 80’s and 90’s but done with director Robert Eggers touch as it is filled with weird characters as well as awesome imagery. The film’s cast is great with Alexander Skarsgard as Amleth and Anya Taylor-Joy as Olga being amazing in their roles. Other actors include Ethan Hawke, Nicole Kidman, Claes Bang, Willem Dafoe, Bjork and Gustav Lindh making up some of the cast. The film sadly did not do well for A24 at the US box office only bringing in $34,233,110.00 on a budget of around $90 million. While not a mega hit at the theater, it really was a great and odd film to see in the theater.

# 2

jurassic world dominion Poster

Dinosaurs are now roaming the world and humans are trying to learn how to live alongside them as the world has truly changed. Claire Dearing and Owen Grady are trying to protect the dinosaurs from poaching and illegal breeding and they both are watching over clone child Maisie Lockwood who ends up getting kidnapped by Dr. Lewis Dodgson of Biosyn who wants to use her genetics for the company’s own gain. They also take the child of Raptor Blue for research. But also in the world, a horde of massive locusts are attacking the world’s crops, and this causes Dr. Ellie Sattler and Dr. Alan Grant to follow the trail to Biosyn as well and now they all must come together along with Dr. Henry Wu, Dr. Ian Malcolm and a few others try their best to save those kidnapped, stop the locusts as well as bring form Biosyn and their evil genetic creations. And this is just a small part of this film’s plot as there is also dinosaur fights, high-speed chases and even more of the evils of Biosyn among much more as this final film in the current Jurassic Park series. And what made this such a great watch for me is the fact that they brought together all the big characters from the series together for one big adventures, and we even get one more look at the T-Rex and we see that he really is the King Of The Dinosaurs! The film stars Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, Jeff Goldblum, Laura Dern, Sam Neill, BD Wong and many more. The film did great for Universal at the US box office bringing in $376,009,080.00 on an $185million budget. This is a must see film if you love the Jurassic Park series like I do, and is one that I bought on home media when released.

# 1

Every Thing Every where All At Once Poster

Evelyn Wang along with her husband Waymond and daughter Joy run a laundromat that is not doing well financially, and she also has the stress of taxes as well as her father Gong Gong is now living with them. But things really turn weird for Evelyn when she meets a different version of her husband who warns her that the fate of the Earth is in her hands. Now Evelyn must fight for the lives of everyone as she gains the powers of other versions of herself to fight off Jodu Tupaki who is the bringer of the destruction of all the multiverse and who is also her daughter in her own reality! Can Evelyn save the multiverse as well as save the fate of her daughter in those worlds…watch this super fun sci-fi comedy action film to find out! And this is just a brief way to try and describe this plot as there is so much more to it. The film is lots of fun, and Michelle Yeoh is amazing as Evelyn Wang as her martial arts skills have not slowed down a bit. It was also great to see Ke Huy Quan back on the big screen as he is best known for playing Data in The Goonies and Short Round in Temple Of Doom. Other actors in the cast include James Hong, Jamie Lee Curtis and Stephanie Hsu. The film did really well for A24 at the box office here in American bringing in $70,008,593.00 on a budget of $25million. This film deserved all the hype it was getting when released and is one that you should see as I feel it did the multiverse better than most of Marvel’s films and shows…minus Spider-Man: No Way Home. Make sure to give this film a watch if you like artistic sci-fi films with action and comedy.

So as you can see Sci-Fi and Fantasy had some really great films out in 2022, and all of them were such a fun watch with “Every Thing Every Where All At Once” being the big surprise for me on just how well I enjoyed it. But now it’s time that we take a look at the Superhero films that filled the cinemas in 2022 and like always, there was a lot of them.

super hero 22 Logo

# 6

Morbius (2022) Poster

Michael Morbius has a rare blood disease as does his childhood friend Milo. Morbius has spent his life trying to find a cure, and after using vampire bats in one of his experiments, Morbius turns into a vampire! And while he tries to find a way to get ride of this curse, his friend Milo wants to as well turn into one as the pain of the blood illness goes away, and after taking the treatment himself Milo turns into a vampire and now he and Morbius are on a one way track to fight and only one of these blood drinkers and leave alive. This superhero film plays more like a B-horror movie that would have been released direct to DVD back in the mid-2010s, and that is not a bad thing for the most part, it’s just the film seems to never truly find its footing or pace. The film, while not terrible, is also not that great and is starting to show that some of these Marvel Comic inspired films are starting to show cracks of having franchise fatigue. Jerrod Leto plays Morbius, and the film also stars Matt Smith, Loxias Crown, Tyrese Gibson and Adia Arjona. The film did poorly for Sony at the box office here in American only bringing in $73,865,530.00 on a budget of around $83million. While I was not a super fan of this film, I did enjoy seeing it on the big screen and would like to at least see the Morbius character in a future Spider-Man film from Sony.

# 5

Black Panther Wakanda Forever (2022) Poster

T’Challa has passed away from an illness, and the kingdom of Wakanda is saddened by the loss of their king and protector. His sister Shuri has taken it the hardest as she was not able to save him with all of her knowledge and technology. Now a year after his passing, the world wants Wakanda to share vibranium, an element that can be used to create weapons, and Queen Ramonda refuses and this causes Wakanda to stand alone in the world. But people go looking for the element other places and find it at the bottom of the ocean, and unbeknownst to them, they have caused Namor and his warriors from the Talokan to attack and defend their Kingdom…and one young woman Riri Williams (Ironheart) is the target for Namor and his people as she has built a machine that can detect the element and this makes her a danger. Namor asks Wakanda for help and to bring Riri to him. When they refuse, the two kingdoms go to war and Shuri must find her inner Black Panther. What kingdom is in the right and who will win the fight Black Panther or Namor? Watch this MCU film to find out. I want to first say that this film pays great respect to the late Chadwick Boseman who passes away from cancer. He was a great actor and he will be missed. Now as for the film itself, it is a fun watch but is way too long and has moments that drag, and I feel that they downplay the power and hatred for mankind that Namor has as he and his people seem to be background players to Shuri fighting tradition as well as becoming the next Black Panther. The film is well acted with Tenoch Huerta Mejia, Winston Duke, Angela Bassett and Lupita Nyong’o stealing the show. While I am happy to see the Black Panther legacy continue in the MCU, this film was just a little too long, dragged in spots and I am not sold just yet on Shuri being the new warrior to become the Black Panther. The film did great for Disney at the American box office bringing in $439,645,653 on a budget of $250 million. Over all if you are a fan of the Black Panther or have been enjoying this latest phase of the Marvel films, check this one out.

# 4

Thor Love And Thunder Poster

Thor has decided to return to Earth after traveling around with The Guardians Of The Galaxy and arrives to find that Gorr The God Butcher has been killing everyone he comes across and even has wounded his friend Sif in battle. He also learns that his ex-girlfriend Jane Foster is now also has the power of Thor and that she is dying from cancer and is living on borrowed time. And with Valkyrie and Korg by their side, they together they must try and warn the other Gods that death is coming as well as use all their powers in order to stop Gorr who is on a rampage to destroy the world as we know it. This is a fun and action packed superhero film that sets the odds against Thor as well as makes him face mortality  because even Gods can be destroyed. The film’s humor works well, and the sadness factor of Jane also does its job of toying with your heart-strings. The films is well cast like always as Chris Hemsworth returns as Thor, Tessa Thompson as Valkyrie, Natalie Portman as Jane Foster and Jaimie Alexander as Sif with Christen Bale playing Gorr The God Butcher, and all do a fantastic job in their roles as always. The film is also just a fun ride of emotions and also has screaming flying goats! The film did good for Disney at the American box office bringing in $343,253,033.00 on a budget of $250 million. If you liked Thor: Ragnarok and The Guardians Of The Galaxy and that style of superhero humor, you will enjoy this one.

# 3

Black Adam (2022) Poster

The people of Kahndaq are being oppressed by a military team that is looking for a crown that contains the powers of demons, and one woman, her son and brother have found it. They have also freed a god-like savior who was given powers by the ancient wizards known as Black Adam who goes around and kills the foreign military invaders, but he is not the hero they think he is and his murderous ways gets the attention of the Justice Society (Hawkman, Dr. Fate, Atom Smasher and Cyclone) who head to Kahndaq to try and bring him in peacefully. This of course is not in Black Adam’s nature. And while the heroes clash with him, a group wants the crown to unleash a demon to claim the throne and rule the land…and they do just that, and it’s now up to the JS who has to team with Black Adam to save lives as well as stop the demon. This is a really fun action superhero film that has cool characters, a big after credits cameo and even a death of a superhero and shows that DC really is trying to claim the top spots of the movie comic universes. The film stars Dwayne Johnson as Black Adam and also on cast is Pierce Bronsan, Aldis Hodge, Quintessa Swindell, Noah Centineo and Sarah Shai to name a few, and all are great in their rolls. To be fair, I almost wish this film was a Justice Society film as I feel they steal this movie away from Black Adam. The film did well for New Line Cinema at the American box office bringing in $167,873,355 on a budget of around $195 million. This is a really fun film and really does shows that DC is spending more time on building their universe as Marvel keeps getting stale in theirs.

# 2

doctor strange in the multiverse of madness Poster

Doctor Strange meets America Chavez, a teenager who has the ability to jump around the multiverse who is on the run from monsters who want to steal her powers. When Doctor Strange tries to help her, he finds that its Scarlet Witch that has sent the monsters as she wants to use America’s powers to live in the reality where her children are real, and she will kill anyone who gets in her way! As Doctor Strange and America Chavez jumps from multiverse to multiverse, they are being hunted down and even meets the fates of other versions of Strange as well as meet heroes like Reed Richards, Black Bolt and Professor X. In the end can Doctor Strange stop Scarlet Witch’s plan for murder and show her that this is not the way for a former hero and Avenger. This is a wild ride that is filled with great cameos, undead spirits, odd ball multiverses and has the Sam Raimi spooky touch as he was the director of the film! That’s right, Raimi returned to superhero films and was even able to kind of add a horror film touch to it. The film stars Benedict Cumberbatch, Elizabeth Olsen, Benedict Wong, Xochiyl Gomez, Rachel McAdams and Patrick Stewart to name a few. The film did well for Disney at the US box office bringing in $411,331,607.00 on a budget of $200 million! This is a super fun film and if you want to see Scarlet Witch kill some superheroes as well as a Zombie Doctor Strange, you should really check this one out.

# 1

Batman (2022) Poster

Gotham City is under attack by a serial killer called The Riddler who is targeting people in power throughout the city leaving riddles for Batman who is going on a crusade to clean up the city from crime. And as the body count rises, Batman also comes across Catwoman, a burglar who is looking for information about her missing friend, as well as comes across Penguin who is a crime lord that runs a club and might have the clues to the missing woman and as well might know more about the true criminal who is running things in Gotham City. And all the while Batman is having to use his great detective work to solve each of these cases and prove that crime truly does not pay. Hands down this was the best Superhero movie to be released in theaters in 2022 and is one of the better Batman films overall! The film takes a more realistic approach and while some elements are pure superhero tropes, the more horror film feeling of a masked serial killer Riddler running around town butchering people and gaining a copycat like following just seems true to life. The film is also well cast with Robert Pattinson doing a great job as Batman with other names like Zoe Kravitz, Paul Dano, John Turturro, Jeffrey Wright and Colin Farrell making up the rest of the lead cast. The film did great for Warner Brothers at the US box office bringing in $369,345,583.00 on a budget of $200 million. This film bring Batman back to being about great detective work as well as kicking the ass of crime, this is one that you need to see if you have not yet.

Superhero films are still going strong at the Box Office and it’s shocking as I think DC Comics films are truly catching up with Marvel Comics films! But up next is our update’s main event and that is of course the Horror Films of 2022 that I saw in the theater! And before we get too far in, I want to also say that I saw Jaws 3D, Creature From The Black Lagoon, Phantom Of The Opera and my friend Victor’s film Thrust all in the cinema as well!

JAWS 3D PosterCreature and Phantom PosterThrust (2022) Poster

And now it’s time to talk Horror as this is the genre of film that I have always loved and I try and see every one I can in the theater, so with no further ado let’s dive deep into this countdown.

horror 22 logo

# 32

Jeepers Creepers Reborn (2022) Poster

Laine and Chase are on a trip together to attend a horror movie party, but after winning a contest at the event they find themselves as well as a YouTube show crew stuck at a house being stalked and killed by The Creeper who has awaken for his 23 days of killing. But things are different this time around as the townspeople are feeding his murderous ways, and Laine is with child and this monster killer wants the baby for his own. Will this couple escape The Creeper or will they find themselves just more victims for his cycle? This is the fourth film in the Jeepers Creepers series and sadly looks very cheap, has a mess of a story and sadly does not follow the three other films in the series as they new creative team behind it has ideas of their own. The film has some kills and oddly is not all that gory, and the use of green screens takes away from the mood and creepiness of the film. The film’s best actors are Sydney Craven and Imran Adams who play Laine and Chase, and some of their dialogue is bad, but you cannot go wrong with Sydney dressing up in costumes to cosplay from a sexy Freddy Kruger to Jennifer from Jennifer’s Body. The film had a limited release as apart of Fathom Events and brought in $2,033,057.00 for Screen Media on an unknown budget. Not a great sequel but worth watching if you enjoy The Jeepers Creepers series…also The Creeper has a new look in this film.

# 31

Umma (2022) Poster

Amanda and her daughter Chris are beekeepers and are making a living selling the honey, but Amanda has issues as the house does not use electricity and she keeps most people away from her home.  This leaves her daughter very sheltered and wanting to see what the world has to offer. You see Amanda was abused by her mother with electricity, and this has made her an odd and protective person, but when her mother’s remains show up to the farm house, her spirit is not done with her torment and wants to once more rule Amanda’s life! Can Amanda break her mother’s spell as well as keep her daughter safe…watch this Sam Raimi produced film to find out. This is a pretty good slow burn horror film that is well acted and has a great small cast with names like Sandra Oh, Fivel Stewart, Dermot Mulroney, Odeya Rush and MeeWha Alana making up the lead roles. The Mother’s evil spirit is cool looking and makes for a good villain in a paranormal fright film, the main issue for me is that the jump scares just did not work and felt very paint by numbers. The film did poorly at the US Box Office for Sony as it only did $2,121,025.00 on an unknown budget, and to be fair this is Sony’s fault who did a terrible job of promoting the film and spent all promotion money at the time to advertise Morbius. Over all, this is not a bad little fright flick, it just seemed to be lacking something to make it stand out from the rest of the paranormal horror films that flood the theaters, home media and streaming sites. I bought it on home media when released as I wanted to see it for a second time.

# 30

Fall (2022) Poster

Becky is climbing a mountain alongside her husband Dan and her best friend Hunter when an accident happens and Dan falls to his death. Time passes and Becky is deeply depressed and is avoiding her father and even thinks of suicide, but when Hunter comes back into her life the two ladies decide to do something extreme to spread Dan’s ashes and that’s climb a old TV tower that is the 4th tallest structure in America. But things go wrong, and the friends get stuck on top of the tower and must find away to get help! As hours and days pass, Becky and Hunter gets weaker and have to make decisions in order to stay alive.  Will the ladies get off the tower alive? Well watch this thriller horror flick to find out! This is one of those thrillers that plays off of the elements and this one is heights and gives you that what if you are stuck high in the sky with no clear way to get down, so in other words think “Open Water” set on a high tower. The film can really mess with the minds of those viewers who hate heights and that is where the horror elements come into play, well also with the vultures who swoop down for the attack. The film is well acted and cast with actress Virginia Gardner who played Hunter stealing the film. The film did okay for Lionsgate at the American box office bringing in $7,240,521.00 on a budget of $3million. This was a fun theater watch and brings some thrills, chills and spills.

# 29

Mean One (2022) Poster

Young Cindy watches a green creature called The Mean One as he tries to steal her family’s Christmas gifts and presents and by accident the creature kills her mom causing it to turn evil and forever ruin the holiday for the small California town. Now as an adult, Cindy returns to town to try to get over the PTSD she has suffered from the event and soon finds that the whole town does not celebrate the holiday. When her father tries to get their old home dressed up for the holiday, he is quickly killed by The Mean One as does anyone in town who happens to have anything to do with Christmas! The sheriff and mayor are no help, and Cindy is looked at as crazy by many of the locals as she is telling them tales of a green furred monster, but soon she finds help with the new Deputy as well as Doc, a drunk old man whose wife was killed by the creature. Will Cindy and her new friends be able to stop the Christmas hating Mean One or will they as well fall victim to his killing ways? Watch this super cheesy creature feature and find out. This holiday horror creature feature flick is a take on the classic “How The Grinch Stole Christmas” but takes a different path to show what if Cindy never touched the heart of The Grinch to turn him into a holiday loving fool, but instead she called him a monster and set him down a path of murder and eating human flesh. While the concept is a fun one, the low budget and execution is just lacking and makes this one feel like a really cheap made-for-TV film complete with laughable digital blood effects. David Howard Thornton plays The Mean One and brings a little Art The Clown to his performance, with other actors including Krystle Martin, John Bingham, Chase Mullins and Amy Schumacher making up the main cast. The film did okay for Atlas at the box office on a limited release as it did around $585,025 on an unknown budget. This is a super cheesy, goofy, low budget fright flick that steals The Grinch and brings some laughs as you will find yourself saying what am I watching!

# 28

Crimes Of The Future (2022) Poster

Saul Tenser is a man who grows new body organs and alongside his partner Caprice does live performances to remove them as a statement of performance art.  The world has changed and this is the new sex as people cannot feel pain and for some growing new body parts is possible. But Saul becomes involved in a strange case that involves a performance autopsy of a murdered young boy who was born with a defect that allows him to eat plastic. People in high power do not want the world to know about these plastic eaters and will do whatever it takes to make sure their existence does not leak out and that means people Saul knows might be involved in this cover up. This is a weird horror sci-fi film from the mind of David Cronenberg and brings all his classic film tropes into a new film that has a message that is left to the minds of the viewers. Viggo Mortensen and Lea Seydoux play Saul and Caprice and are fantastic, but for me Kristen Stewart who plays Timlin, a worker for the National Organ Registry steals the show, as she is delightfully weird. The film was a mix bag of good and bad digital and practical effects and was not one of my favorite Cronenberg films but was a fun watch in the theater. The movie did okay for Neon at the American box office on its limited run brining in $2,452,882.00 on an unknown budget. And I bought this one once it was on home media to give it another watch.

# 27

Halloween Ends (2022) Poster

Years have passed, and Michael Myers has not been spotted. Laurie Strode is trying to move on with her life, buying a nice house in a neighborhood and raising her granddaughter Alyson who herself has found a job working as a nurse and finds a boyfriend in Cory a town outsider who by accident killed a kid that he was babysitting making him the punching bag of the town. But Cory’s inner evil is unleashed when he is tormented and beaten up by some teens and he stumbles onto the hiding place of Michael Myers and wants the killer to teach him how to murder without remorse…and he does! But now Corey is getting too crazed and after getting revenge on those who tormented him, he sets his sights on Laurie who must fight for her life as well as that of her granddaughter from making the biggest mistake of her life by running away with this serial killer in training. And in the end Laurie has to come face to mask with Michael Myers one last time and must also deal with Corey. This third film in the Blumhouse Halloween trilogy is very much a disappointment for me as it has very little to do with Michael Myers and puts most of the focus on Corey and his descent into evil.  This makes this final film feel like a lame duck way to end a series, as the final fight between Laurie and Michael seems like an afterthought and only lasts a very short time. The pluses for the film are that I enjoyed the Michael Myers’ kills even if they are few and far, Jamie Lee Curtis gives her best performance in a long time, and the effects are pretty cool. I also should say I do like the idea of Corey being the town’s new Boogeyman, but I feel they went about it the wrong way…as at one point Corey bullies Michael to get his mask…lame. The film did pretty well for Universal at the American box office bringing in $64,079,860 on a $30 million budget. Over all Halloween Ends is a film in the series that has been meet with very mix reviews, and while I did not hate it, I was very disappointed in it and it is very much a middle of the road film.

# 26

The Retaliators (2022) Poster

Bishop is a preacher whose young daughter was murdered by a sadistic biker Ram Kady when she was in the wrong place at the wrong time, and the man of God’s life is turned upside down. But when police officer Jed finds Ram, he offers him a chance to get one minute alone with the killer to make him feel just as much pain as his family does, but things are even more crazy as Bishop finds that Jeb as a underground bunker filled with tortured killers who now act like mindless zombies. Jed is mad at Bishop when he will not take out his hurt on his daughter’s killer. All Hell breaks loose when the tortured killers, bikers looking for Ram and Ram himself all show up to the bunker and Bishop has to fight for his life to survive. This is a fun indie film that gets super bloody in the film’s finale and stars all types of band members from bands like Five Finger Death Punch, Motely Crue and Papa Roach to name a few. The film does have some odd moments as some plot points as well as characters come and go, and I wish the fight between the tortured killers and the bikers would have been a little better and longer. This film had a very limited release and brought in $7,145 for Better Noise Films at the international box office (no domestic figures are available yet) on an unknown budget. This is a film that you should checkout if you like crazy indie films that have a dash of biker crime gangs an tortured zombie like people that were very bad people.

# 25

Bhediya (2022) Poster

Bhaskar is sent the jungles of a small town in Arunachal Pradesh to seal a deal for land development that will have much of the trees cut down to make way for a new roadway. Along with him is his cousin Jana, his friend Jomin as well as local Mr. Panda all who are trying to help to seal the deal with the locals, but things change when Bhaskar is bitten by a werewolf that is called The Virus by the locals; After getting treatment from the local vet Anika, our now cursed Bhaskar must hide the fact he is a werewolf from the locals, avoid killing people when the moon is full, find a cure, fight his feeling for Anika and learn that the spirit of the jungle has its own protector to keep it safe from those wanting to cut it down. Will Bhaskar find the cure or will be forever be doomed to howl at the moon? Watch this fun Bollywood comedy horror Film and find out for yourself. This is a pretty fun silly fright flick that has some scares hidden in with the laughs, with Varun Dhawan, Abhishek Banerhee, Paalin Kabak and Deepak Dobriyal making up the group of friends. They all do a fantastic job in their roles, with Kriti Sanon playing Anika and she steals the film with her acting and beauty. The werewolf effects are cool and are done via CGI, we get werewolf attacks and kills and the film does have some blood and violence throughout. And like any good Bollywood film, there are musical numbers and dancing, and I should also say this one has messages as well about saving the environment and treating others better. The film had a limited release here in America and did around $609,551 internationally. This is a fun watch and if you like Bollywood horror comedies and werewolf films, make sure to give this one a watch. I would buy this one on home media if it’s released here in the states.

# 24

Don't Look at the Demon (2022) Poster

Jules is a woman who grew up being able to talk to demons and ghosts, and when she was young and doing so, her sister was killed by a demon that she set free. Now as an adult she hosts a TV Show called Skeleton Crew where she enters haunted houses and they film the strange happenings. But while filming in Malaysia, Jules and her crew enter a home that houses a demon that is very powerful and is protected by the souls of his past victims and now wants a new soul for his growing army. The Demon possesses, torments and injures those in the house and now it is up to Jules to find her inner power and try to save the owners of the house as well as her crew’s souls from damnation and will have get the help of a Monk in order to do so…but will Jules be able to do so or are they all doomed. This is a fun spooky little demonic haunted house film that for an indie film tries to bring the scares as well as some gruesome moments and for the most part does a great job at it. Plus the fact this had a limited release around Halloween time made it even more of a good watch late in the evening. The film stars Fiona Dourif, Jordan Belfi, Malin Crepin, Harris Dickinson and the lovely Thao Nhu Phan and all do a great job in their parts. The Demon is pretty evil and what he has done in the past while alive is pretty sick stuff. The film did ok for Outsider Pictures bringing in $849,299 internationally on an unknown budget and a very limited release. Over all this was a decent demon flick that I will pick up on home media when released, and you should check it out if you like demon films or films that are set with Malaysia ghost stories.

# 23

Studio 666 (2022) Poster

The Foo Fighters are working on their 10th album and rent out an old house to do so, and unbeknownst to them another band was killed in the house recording an album. And after some strange things around the house including terrible nightmares, dead animals and a phantom gardener, a demon spirit gets inside Dave Grohl and possesses him to make the perfect satanic rock song that will bring back the glory days of the music genre. And as time passes Dave finds his sound and also finds his killer side as he takes out anyone who stands in the song’s way including his own band members, and in the end what is left of the Foo Fighters must save Dave from the demon’s grip and survive the sinister house. This is a very gory horror comedy film that was from the mind of Dave Grohl and delivers a very cheesy and humors return to the days of Rock N Roll Horror films. While the gore is great and over the top some of the humor is a little childish and is just four letter words thrown around and the middle finger given, but other humor bits hit the spot and are pretty funny. The film also stars Kerry King of Slayer, director John Carpenter, Jenna Ortega, Will Forte, Whitney Cummings and even Lionel Richie in a cameo. The film did ok for Open Road Films at the American box office bringing in $2,513,963.00 on an unknown budget. Over all this was a fun fright flick with some cool effects and fans of Foo Fighters will love it. I bought it on home media when it was released.

# 22

Bones and All (2022) Poster

Maren Yearly is a young woman who finds herself on a quest to find her mother after her father leaves her on her own.  Maren has a serious issue as she eats people, and she cannot help her need to eat human flesh and meat…and her father just cannot keep covering for her deeds. Maren does not want to eat people so she needs answers and as she travels across states to find her mom, she meets Sully another like her in Ohio who teaches her his rules of eating people, and when Maren sneaks away, Sully becomes obsessed with her and follows her in secret just watching. But Maren, while in Kentucky, meets Lee a young man she falls in love with and who as well is a human eater, and together they must find out the history of Maren’s life, deal with the guilt of eating people, avoid Sully and deal with their blooming relationship. This is a very fun romance horror film that is a twisted coming of age tale and has very interesting characters throughout its journey. Taylor Russell and Timothee Chalamet are great as Maren and Lee with Mark Rylance giving a creepy performance as Sully. The film did okay for United Artist at the American box office bringing in $7,834,907 on a budget of around $20 million. If you like your horror with a dash of romance and lots of flesh eating, then make sure to check this one out. I will get this one when released on home media.

# 21

Cursed (2022) Poster

Baron Seamus Laurent is a man who will do anything to protect his family, village and land and when a band of Roma try to claim the land he has them brutally killed and buried in a field, but the Roma are able to place a curse on the village and land and with silver fangs created from the coins Judas got when he turned on Christ the curse of the beast runs through the town and the curse starts with Seamus’s own son Edward! And after a murder of a young boy, pathologist John McBride comes to town and tries to bring peace to the village and end the curse with a silver bullet. This is an atmospheric slow burn werewolf film that blends elements of an A24 horror film with a dash of Hammer horror and delivers a pretty creepy watch. The film has some good bloody moments, and the werewolf design is pretty original and creepy looking. While some viewers may not like the slower pace I found it to be just right and well done to bring that level of spooky and unknown. I like the fact that the werewolf curse is spread by Roma who use silver fangs made from those coins as that adds the old world touch to the story. The film did well for LD Entertainment during its release bringing $4,588,389.00 on an unknown budget at the America box office. Worth the watch if you enjoy the more atmospheric old world style horror films and is one that I got on Home Media when released.

# 20

Terrifier 2 Poster

Art The Clown is back from the dead and is on another rampage of slaughter and butchering anyone he comes across but this time he is not alone as he has a strange little clown girl along for the ride. But Art makes a mistake when he messes with the wrong high school girl with Sienna Shaw who’s battling trauma and who finds her inner warrior thanks to a magical sword her father gave her…yeah. Can Sienna save her and her brother’s life from the psycho Art The Clown or will they both just become another bloody victim to his madness…watch this gore filled slasher film to find out. This film while filled with some amazing kills that are gory as all hell does lack the charm of the first film, its way too long being almost 2hrs and 30min, is a mess in the story department and goes a little off the rails with some of the fantasy elements added into the mix. The film is well cast with Lauren LaVera stealing the film as the Sienna as she is so good I couldn’t keep my eyes off her and cheered for her the whole final fight and David Howard Thornton is great once more as the sadistic and evil Art The Clown as I don’t think anyone could play that role better. The film also has cameos from Chris Jericho, Felissa Rose and Tamara Glynn with Samantha Scaffidi returning as Victoria Heyes from the first film. The film got a limited release and did well for Bloody Disgusting at the US box office bringing in $10,640,105 on an unknown budget. Over all it was a great mindless bloodbath film that was just lacking the spooky charm of the original.

# 19

Bodies Bodies Bodies (2022) Poster

David is holding a hurricane party at his mansion and has invited many of his close friends, and a shocker comes when Sophia, who is just out of rehab and her new girlfriend Bee show up to enjoy the party and safety from the storm. But as the party starts and the drugs and alcohol flow tensions start to build and the group decides to play a murder mystery game they created called Bodies Bodies Bodies, but when one of the friends is found dead the fear sweeps the friends who all accuse each other of the murder, and to their horror the bodies of their friends keep being found and the murder is on the loose at this mansion on a very stormy night…or are they in this twisted black comedy horror film. This film has great atmosphere, is well acted and has some chuckle moments…but I also think that it dragged in spots and had characters that were mostly very unlikable people and while that’s the point it can be over bearing at points. Actresses Amandla Stenberg and Maria Bakalova steal the show and the film does have some bloody moments and has that who’s the killer vibe that was made popular in more modern Horror by films like Scream. The film did pretty well for A24 at the American box office bringing in $11,446,602.00 on an unknown budget. If you like Horror Comedies that have a Slasher feel check this one out, and is one I will get on home media when released.

# 18

Firestarter (2022) Poster

Charlie McGee is an eleven year old girl who has powers she can not control nor understands as she can not only move things with her mind and make people bend to her will but she can also start fires and that means from big explosions to lighting people on fire. You see Charlie’s parents have powers as well and they have been experimented on by the government before they had her, and have been on the run from them after her birth due to the fact they wanted to use Charlie as a weapon as well as experiment on her to unleash her full power. But they make a big mistake when the send John Rainbird after the family and this leads to Charlie’s mother being killed and her father captured, now all hell breaks loose at the research lab as Charlie is angry and wants revenge for what they have done to her and unleashes her fire powers. This is a fun remake base on the Stephen King story and is well scripted, casted and scored. Ryan Kiera Armstrong is great as Charlie and Zac Efron is also great in the roll of her father other names in the cast include Sydney Lemmon, Michael Greyeyes and John Beasley. And for those wonder John Carpenter and his son Cody did the score. The film did ok at the American box office bringing in $9,589,250.00 on an unknown budget. They foolishly also released this the same day to streaming and I think that hurt its money draw. This is one I got when released on home media.

# 17

Invitation (2022) Poster

Evie Jackson is a woman who works at a catering company who has no family left after the recent passing of her mother, but when she does a DNA test to find out her family tree she meets her cousin Oliver Alexander from England and the two meet up in New York and she finds herself invited to a wedding in England expenses paid by her cousin to meet the rest of her family that will be attending. Also while there she meets the owner of the mansion they are staying in named Walter De Ville who charms her and the two start to have feelings for one another, but thing are not what they seem at this mansion as Evie soon finds that she is the bride to be and Walter his her soon to be husband and her family and the guests are blood drinking vampires…and worse Walter is really Count Dracula! Will Evie be able to escape her fate of damnation or will she have to forever drink blood and be one of the Brides Of Dracula…watch this film to find out. This is a fun slow burn Vampire Horror Film that has elements of Hammer Horror, Anne Rice and A24 all mixed together to deliver a spooky watch. Nathalie Emmanuel is great as Evie and Thomas Doherty was good was Walter, other cast members include Alana Boden, Stephanie Corneliussen, Sean Pertwee and Hugh Skinner. The film does suffer from being a R rated film that was clearly cut down to a PG-13 rating as some of the more bloody moments seem way trimmed down. The film did well for Sony at the US box office bringing in $25,100,080.00 on a budget of only $10million. This is worth a watch if you enjoy vampire tales and is one I got on home media when released.

# 16

Christmas Bloody Christmas (2022) Poster

Tori Tooms is the owner of a used media store that mostly focuses on vinyl records, and her sales are up during the crazy Christmas season and she just wants to get drunk and laid! But things gets super crazy when a mechanical Santa Claus armed with an axe that was created by the US Military goes rogue and starts a bloody killing spree that leaves Tori’s friends and family dead as well as the town police force! And this leaves Tori fighting for her life and trying to find a way to stop this mechanical murderous Santa. This is a fun splatter film that delivers some over the top kills and punk rocker style characters with Riley Dandy being fantastic as Tori and such names as Sam Delich, Jeff Daniel Phillips, Jonah Ray, Kansas Bowling and Abraham Benrudi played the killer Santa doing great in their roles. The film packs in some great kills as well as uses neon and Christmas lights to bring a strange glow to the town, plus the film started out as a Silent Night Deadly Night remake so that as well is pretty cool. The film had a very limited release and did well for Shudder at the American box office bringing in $**** on an unknown budget. If you like Holiday themed Horror Films make sure to give this one a watch, but keep in mind it is also filled to the brim with lots of cussing and characters tend to talk over each other and can be overload for your ears. Will buy once on home media.

# 15

Beast (2022) Poster

A group of poachers kill a pride of lions but the male lion escapes and after killing two of the poachers the lion has a hatred for mankind and is on a quest to kill everyone it sees. Dr. Nate Samuels takes his two daughters Mere and Norah to a trip to Africa to visit a family friend Martin to get away from the sadness of their mother passing away from cancer. The Samuels family is dealing with some issues as Nate’s older daughter blames him for not being around during her mom’s final months. But things get way worse for the family when they are attacked by that rogue lion while far away from any help and must try to fight to stay alive, will this family be able to stay together or will they be hunted and killed one by one…watch this Nature Runs Amok Horror Flick to find out! This was a pretty fun watch as I am a sucker for animal attack Horror films and this one did a great job of making the lion bloodthirsty and yet also sympathetic as he only has this hate due to what man has done to his family. The film as some good thrills, kills and blood spills and is well acted and casted as Idris Elba, Iyana Halley, Leah Sava Jeffries and Sharlto Copley make up the lead cast. The film did alright for Universal at the US box office bringing in $31,846,530.00 on a budget of $36million, and for me was well worth seeing on the big screen! Worth the watch if you love animal attack films and bought when released on home media.

# 14

Nope (2022) Poster

OJ Haywood and his sister Emerald are the owners of a Hollywood horse training ranch after their father paces away from a freak accident of items falling from the sky, but the siblings soon find out that it was no freak accident and was the act of an alien creature that lives in a cloud in the sky near their ranch. Along with Angel a tech salesman at a department store and movie cinematographer Antiers they set out to get proof of this being as well as try and find a way to stay alive from it’s rampage of hunger for flesh and blood. Also throw in a former child actor who survived a animal attack on the set of a sitcom who know owns an amusement park as well as a TMZ reporter out for a story and you have this alien monster film set on a ranch. This third Horror film from creator Jordan Peele was kind of a disappointment for me as while I think many parts of the film worked well, I also thought it was over long and lacked the chills that his other films delivered. I really enjoyed the flashback scenes to the sitcom that had a chimpanzee on a rampage as I felt that was way more scary than the silky looking cloth alien in the sky. I also want to say that it was well caste and I loved the chemistry that all the actors had on the screen. The film did well for Universal at the American box office brining in $123,277,080.00 on a budget of $68million. Over all not a bad film but not a great one as I truly feel this is Peele’s weakest Horror film to date, and did buy on home media when released.

# 13

Bhool Bhulaiyaa 2 (2022) Poster

On his travel to a concert Ruhaan Randhawa meets soon to be reluctant bride Reet Thakur on her way to her wedding and convinces her to get off the bus and go to the concert as they can catch the next one and she can still make it on time, and she is glad she does as the bus she was to be on crashes and has no survivors, and now her family thinks she is dead and her cousin is in love with her groom and Reet is ok with them getting together. Now Reet has Ruhaan travel back home with her and act as a psychic in order to tell her wishes to her family, and after the wedding she will revile that she is alive. But Reet makes a big mistake as she hides out in the family’s old mansion that has a room that houses the evil spirit of Manjulika a relative who practiced black magic and has been locked away for 18 years in that room, and when the spirit gets free all hell breaks loose and dark secrets are exposed and Reet finds real love in Ruhaan. This was a very fun Horror Comedy film from Bollywood that was filled with fun music numbers, great characters, beautiful ladies and an awesome ghost that was played amazingly by Tabu who plays duel roles in the film. Other great actors include Kartik Aaryan, Kiara Advani and Rajpal Yadav and the film opened limited in America and made $18,307,258.00 on a budget of around $9million international. While the film is over 2hrs and some of the comedy moments can fall flat, this was a very entertaining film and glad I was able to catch it in the theater on the big screen…would buy on home media if release in America.

# 12

The Menu (2022) Poster

Margo is on a “date” with food lover Tyler who has paid lots of money to have a meal at the Hawthorns a restaurant on an island ran by Chef Julian Slowik, only the rich can afford the meals and only a limited amount of guests are permitted at a time. The Chef has an army of sous chefs behind him as well as other workers that make up a restaurant with his dinner having a theme this night, and unknown to the people there the theme is death…but poor Margo was not suppose to be there and this throws the Chef’s theme off. Now Margo must find a way to get out off the restaurant, off the island or perish with the rest of the guests on this dinner course straight to the grave. This is a delightfully weird Horror film that showcases a mans rise to fame and mental fall to being suicidal, and how in his twisted mind all those there have wronged him or the world in some ways. The film is well casted with such names as Ralph Fiennes, Anya Taylor-Joy, Nicholas Hoult, John Leguizamo, Hong Chau and Judith Light to name a few, and each are fantastic in their role with Fiennes as Chef being one hell of a great casting as is Taylor-Joy as Margo. The film did good for Searchlight at the US box office bringing in ***** on a budget of $35million. If you like slow burn Horror Thrillers that will make you hungry for a cheeseburger give this one a watch. Will own when released on home media.

# 11

Men (2022) Poster

Harper Marlow rents an old farmhouse in order to get away as she had a terrible breakup with her husband that lead to his suicide, and she rents the house from Geoffrey who lives a few doors down in order to relax and clear her mind. But Harper’s peaceful get away turns terrifying when a naked man fallows her home from the woods and attempts to break into her home, and even more crazy all the men from town are mostly odd, rude and all look the same! And her time turns worse when the naked man from the town turns out to be a shape shifting creature that has it in it’s mind that he must get to Harper! This is a very strange, creepy and entertaining movie that plays up on the terrors of an abusive relationship, the effects suicide has on loved ones as well as a dash of folk small town kind of horrors. The film is well acted with Jessie Buckley and Rory Kinnear in the two leads being great casting calls and some of the effects for the creature are very well done. Sadly the film did ok for A24 at the American box office bring in $7,587,853.00 on an unknown budget. This one has some strange moments, creepy atmosphere, great acting, a cool creature, bloody effects and was a great watch in the cinema. Bought when released on home media.

# 10

Prey For The Devil (2022) Poster

Sister Ann is a young Nun who has been through some bad things in her younger life and has found her calling working for the church. And she really is interested in exorcisms, as she knows that her mother was possessed by a demon and now she wants to help others, but a female performing them is prohibited. But Ann pushes when she meets a young girl named Natalie who’s very soul is in danger as the demon inside her is the same that was in Ann’s mom and it wants to corrupt and destroy Ann. Now Ann along with the help of a young Father must fight the demon for the young girls soul as well as Ann’s as this demon will not go away until it gets what it wants! Is Ann strong enough to defeat it watch this fun possession film and find out for yourself. This film was released around Halloween and was a pretty creepy and fun PG-13 fright flick that delivered some demonic goodness and brought to the screen a cool female hero with Sister Ann who is very likable. Actress Jacqueline Byers plays Sister Ann and is fantastic in the role and I hope she returns if this film gets a sequel and it should in my opinion. Other actors include Virginia Madesen, Ben Cross, Posy Taylor and Christian Navarro and all are great in their parts. The film did ok for Lionsgate at the US box office bringing in $**** on an unknown budget. I really had fun with this film and will get once released on home media.

# 9

Watcher (2022) Poster

Julia and her husband Francis move to Bucharest for his job and she is a fish out of the water as she does not speak Romanian. And things get worse for her when she notices an across the street neighbor watching her and following her, all the while women in the area are being killed by a serial killer called The Spider…her fears set in as she thinks maybe her stalker is the killer and while her husband is supportive of believing her the police and most of her neighbors thinks she is crazy. Is the watcher the killer? Is she loosing her mind? Are her fears more about the big move? Watch this Horror Thriller film and find out for yourself. This was a great watch on the big screen and was shot and written very well and almost has a Hitchcock feel to it. The film is very well acted with Maika Monroe playing the part of Julia being fantastic and her supporting cast Burn Goreman, Karl Glusman, Madalina Anea and Daniel Nuta all doing great jobs in their rolls. The film does have some bloody moments and plays on your fears of being alone and the feeling of being watched, its very much a slow burn film and if you are looking for a slasher film here its not. The film did ok for IFC at the US box office bringing in $1,961,207.00 on an unknown budget. This is one I bought on home media when released and if you enjoy Horror Thriller films make sure to check this one out.

# 8

Don't Worry Darling (2022) Poster

Alice and Jack Chambers live in the desert town of Victory as things in this private town is great as the men go to work for Frank on the “Victory Project” as the ladies stay home and take care of the house and make the meals and are told never to go to the edge of town…but this perfect life in this perfect town starts to turn into a nightmare as Alice starts seeing things when she travels to the end of town that makes her question what is going on in this town and what Frank and his Top Secret Project really is, and she is ready to leave it all and go to war with Frank about it! Will Alice find the answers? Is Victory really the perfect town? Or is something more sinister at play…well you will have to watch this Psychological Horror Thriller to find out for yourself! First thing I need to say is that Florence Pugh is an amazing actress and does a great job at playing Alice Chambers and her moments of breaking down as well as combating Frank played by Chris Pine at the dinner table truly drew me into the town of Victory. The film really does play with your mind and I enjoyed the reveal at the end and while the Horror elements are toned down it is one heck of a thriller. The film also stars Olivia Wilde, Harry Styles, Kiki Layne, Gemma Chan and Nick Kroll all who were great in their roles. The film did ok for New Line Cinema at the American box office bringing in $45,309,403.00 on a budget of $35 million. This film had a lot of bad press before and after being released, but I for one really enjoyed it and will buy on home media when released.

# 7

Smile (2022) Poster

Dr. Rose Cotter is a woman who had a rough childhood and is now working at a hospital in order to help patients with their mental health as well as has a loving fiancé and an older sister who cares about her. But her life changes for the worse when one of her new patients takes her own life in front of her after talking about witnessing a suicide and then seeing and hearing something that is always smiling. Now Rose is hearing the voices and seeing thing and all those around her think she is loosing her mind and with the help of an ex-boyfriend who is a cop they try to figure out a way to stop this curse as something is after her and it wants her dead. This is a really fun and spooky film about a creature that feeds of trauma and fear and those that are infected all have a twisted smile before they take their own lives in order to pass the curse onto another. The effects are well done in the film and is also well casted with names like Sosie Bacon, Caitlin Stasey, Kyle Gallner, Kal Penn, Jessie T. Usher and Robin Weigert making up the main cast. The film did well for Paramount at the American box office bringing in $105,935,048.00 on a budget of $17million. If you like your Horror films with a dash of mental Horror and a pinch of creature feature check this one out for sure. And yes I bought this on home media when released.

# 6

Pearl (2022) Poster

It’s 1918 and Pearl is a young woman who’s husband is away at war and she lives with her strict German mother and her very ill father and spends her days working on the farm and dreaming of being a famous dancer on the movie screens. But Pearl is not like other girls as she has a dark side a murderous side and she wants away from the farm and wants to hunt down fame and fortune…and when she meets the local theater projectionist and learns from her sister in law about a church dance off she will do whatever it takes to because famous and that includes murder! This is the prequel to the film X and is such an great film that is very uncomfortable to watch as actress Mia Goth is amazing as the crazed Pearl and you go along for the ride with her as she slips more and more into her murderous decent into madness. The film while a slow burn builds to the bloody Horror and fans of slashers will not be disappointed. The film also stars Tandi Wright, Emma Jenkins-Purro, Matthew Sunderland and David Corenswet all who do a great job in their roles. The film did well for A24 at the American box office brining in $9,423,445.00 on a unknown budget. If you like indie horror films that have elements of slasher and psychological thriller elements smashed together this is one you will want to see, also had to get it when released on physical media.

# 5

Barbarian (2022) Poster

On a stormy night Tess Marshall heads to an Airbnb in a rundown neighborhood in Detroit as she has a job interview the next day to help on an independent documentary film. But once she gets there she meets Keith who also has rented the house for a stay and this makes it that the two strangers have to share the home on the stormy night, but lucky for them they become friends. But on the second day Tess finds a hidden passage and room in the basement that holds a dark secret, and when she and Keith enter deeper into the passage they find that they are not alone! Days pass and the owner of the house disgraced actor AJ Gilbride shows up and he himself finds that someone is in the hidden passage and they are not friendly. And when Tess and AJ find themselves in trouble they must find away to escape the house alive. This is a very twisted and fun film that takes lots of twists and turns and is just the right amount of weirdness and gory to make it a great film for fans who enjoy something different in their Horror Films. The film stars Georgina Campbell, Justin Long, Bill Skarsgard, Richard Brake and Kate Bosworth and all did fantastic in their roles with Long being a scene stealer in parts. The film did well for 20th Century at the American box office bringing in $40,842,944.00 on a budget of $10.5million. This is one that you should checkout as its creepy and the twists are lots of fun and is one I had to get when released on home media.

# 4

Scream (2022) Poster

The Ghostface killing are happening in Woodsboro again and the first attended victim Tara Carpenter survives the attack that brings her sister Sam and her boyfriend Richie to town to check on her, but the attacks keep happing and even Sam herself is attacked while visiting in the hospital! And with Ghostface returning so does those who have solved and defeated the killers in the past Judy Hicks, Gale Weathers, Dewey Riley and Sidney Prescott…but the rules have changed, motivations have changed and Ghostface has new ideas to freshen up the legacy of the killers before him…in this Scream everyone’s a suspect and the past will always comeback to haunt you. This fifth film in the Scream movie series was a great way to blend in the classic characters we love with new ones that we quickly care about. Seeing Ghostface return to the big screen was a great way to kick off Horror at the cinema for 2022! This film is also very bloody and does a great job of building the “Who” is the killer throughout the film. The film did great for Paramount at the American box office bringing in $81,641,405.00 on a budget of $24 million. A great sequel and its awesome that we are getting a sixth film in the series due to the success of this one.

# 3

Orphan First Kill (2022) Poster

Leena Klammer is a thirty year old woman who looks like a 10 year old girl who is super dangerous and after escaping a mental institution in Russia she takes on the identity of missing American child Esther Albright in order to be sent to America, with the goal of robbing the family and escape being locked back up in the Asylum. Once she arrives in America her cover is perfect, but she does slip up and say the wrong things that makes her “Mother” and “Brother” very suspicious. Everything seems to be going well that is until a police officer starts to look into her and her story of being kidnapped and when she goes to silence him once and for all Esther finds herself in a sinister plot that has her murderous rage being used against her, and what this plot is I can not spoil so you will have to see this awesome slasher film for yourself. Isabelle Fuhrman returns in the role of Esther and is fantastic once more as she really does come off like a psycho, also in the cast includes Julia Stiles, Rossif Sutherland and Matthew Finian. The film had a limited release and did pretty well for Paramount at the American theaters bringing in $5,413,227.00 on an unknown budget. This is a film that you should see if you liked the original or just like slasher films with a dash of thriller! This was a must own when released on home media.

# 2

X (2022) Poster

Maxine Minx is an adult film actress who along with friends travel to a small farm house in Texas in 1979 to film a porno in order to cash in on the booming home video market and to make money as well as for Maxine to become a big star, but the thing being is the farms owner Howard and his wife Pearl are not the sweet old people they seem as they have a dark side and Maxine and her friends have become their new targets for their sick sexual game. And one by one the crew are murdered and this leaves you wondering how Maxine will survive this farmhouse of terror. This is a great modern slasher film set in the 70’s that has a true grimy and gross feeling to it, and the best part is that Maxine and all the cast and crew are likable making when a character is killed feel more impactful. The film is well casted with Brittany Snow, Jenna Ortega, Martin Henderson, Scott Mescudi, Owen Campbell and Stephen Ure all being fantastic in their parts, but its Mia Goth who steals the film playing both Maxine Minx as well as Pearl the old woman. Lots of good kills and bloody gore effects with a great score by Tyler Bates makes this a great watch. The film did good for A24 at the American Box Office bringing in $11,765,309.00 on a unknown budget. With a prequel called “Pearl” in the works this could be a very cool new horror franchise in the making. And bought on home media when released, and if you have not seen it and like the grime feel of 70’s Horror and Adult Films make sure to give this one a watch.

# 1

Black Phone (2022) Poster

Young boys are going missing in a Colorado town and the police have no suspect and are dubbing the kidnapper The Grabber, and when Finney is kidnapped his sister Gwen has dreams that she thinks can lead the cops to rescue her brother. Meanwhile Finney is getting help from The Grabber’s past victims who are calling him from a discounted black phone in the basement cell he is being kept in, and giving him tools and advice on how to escape this hell alive. Will the cops save him? Will the voices of those lost guide him to safety? Or will The Grabber take another victim to their grave? Watch this well done and creepy film to find out. This Blumhouse produced film is based on a story by Joe Hill and has some truly spooky and uncomfortable moments that will shock the viewers, Ethan Hawke is great as The Grabber and Mason Thames, Madeleine McGraw, Miguel Cazarez Mora, Tristan Pravong, Brady Hepner and Jacob Moran are great as the kids of the film. The film is dark and mean spirited in spots and creeps up your spine with a “this could really happen” feel to the killer. This film did good at the American box office for Universal bringing in $89,870,280.00 on a $18million budget. A touch of slasher and a touch of supernatural made this one hell of a great spooky watch on the big screen and bought once released on home media.

Star Trek VI Preview Logo

Man Of Steel vs. The Mole Men!

Welcome back to Rotten Ink. For this update we will be chatting about something very cool, “Superman And The Mole Men,” the first film to feature the Man Of Steel and starred George Reeves as Superman who would go on to play the character in the awesome TV series from the 50’s! The thing about Superman is that the character is truly iconic and is a big part of Pop Culture in America and when thinking about topics that needed to be covered for Rotten Ink’s 10 Year Celebration, I knew that Superman had to be one of the topics as growing up the character was a. part of my childhood as I not only watched the George Reeves show but also read the comics, played the video games, had the toys, wore the shirts, watched the cartoons and even loved the films that have been released. And what is really cool about this Superman update is that I get to talk about the movie that started it all for many young fans in the 1950’s who loved Superman already from comics, radio show and even the movie serials, and soon after the movie’s release they got to see him every week in action on the TV show. So hold onto your seats as we are going for a quick update adventure ride with the one and only Superman as played by George Reeves.

Superman And The Mole Men 1

Let’s first start off by taking a look at the film that the Photo Comic Graphic Novel we will be covering is based on, the first film to feature Superman. I want to remind you readers that the film’s write up will be taken from our friends at IMDB and that I will be writing about the film’s production, legacy and my thoughts. So let’s dive in and talk about Superman and his run in with the Mole Men.

Superman And The Mole Men 2Superman And The Mole Men 3Superman And The Mole Men 4

Superman And The Mole Men (1951)

“Reporters Clark Kent and Lois Lane arrive in the small town of Silsby to witness the drilling of the world’s deepest oil well. The drill, however, has penetrated the underground home of a race of small, furry people who then come to the surface at night to look around. The fact that they glow in the dark scares the townfolk, who form a mob, led by the vicious Luke Benson, intent on killing the strange people. Only Superman has a chance to prevent this tragedy.”

Superman was one of the most popular superheroes and most read comics of the time. This meant that other media was in his future like radio and movie serials, and in 1951 he made his way to the silver screen with his first full fledged movie! The film was written by Richard Fielding and was distributed by Lippert Pictures and was a quick and cheap production as they really wanted to cash in on the popularity of Superman with young comic book readers. Lee Sholem, who before this film had directed “Tobor The Great” as well as two Tarzan films with “Tarzan’s Magic Fountain” and “Tarzan And The Slave Girl,” was selected as he knew how to make kid friendly Adventure Fantasy films. The film’s plot was based on the Red Scare that was gripping America at the time and even has elements of classic Universal Monster Sci-Fi films thrown in to a comic book feel. When casting the film they casted George Reeves as Clark Kent aka Superman, Phyllis Coates as Lois Lane and Billy Curtis and Jerry Maren as two of the Mole-Men. The film was shot in only 12 days at RKO-Pathe Studios in California and survived a double purpose as they wanted to have a hit that would bring kids to the cinema and it was also used to try and see if people had interest in Superman so that a TV Show could be made. And it did both of that as the film was well loved by kids in the early 1950’s and later in 1951 “The Adventures Of Superman” hit TV screens as a syndicated show. The film was scored by Darrell Calker and later the film was cut into a two part episode with changes when the show was released. The movie over the years has been released on VHS, Laserdisc as well as DVD so if you want to see Superman’s first movie adventure it is out in the world for you to be able to do so. And for those of you wonder in 1951 this film was joined by such other Sci-Fi and Horror Classics in the theater and dive-in screens as “The Day The Earth Stood Still”, “The Thing From Another World”, “The Man From Planet X”, “Abbott And Costello Meet The Invisible Man”, “The Son of Dr. Jekyll” and “Bride Of The Gorilla”.

Growing up I was a big fan of George Reeves as Superman as the old classic TV Show would air all the time in reruns on “Nick At Night/TV Land” and I would watch and as a kid I do remember wondering where Lex Luthor, Braniac or Mister Mxyzptlk were, but somehow it never bothered me enough as I was always looking forward to watching Superman bring down the bad guys and save the day. I saw the movie “Superman And The Mole Men” after I had already been a fan of the show as I remember some local area TV Station aired it some Sunday afternoon and my brother and I were glued to the TV and enjoyed every cheesy moment. I mean how can you go wrong with Mole Men running wild in a small town and Superman must save them from an unruly mob who wants them dead cause they look different and have been accused of crimes they did not do all out of fear. The one thing that annoyed me for the longest time is how long this film took to get a proper DVD release that was not just an extra on another Superman release, and even the one that is out now is by Cheezy Movies so it has no extras of its own. And while this film is not the best Superman film made, it is a good one and I would have loved to have seen this film in the theater in 1951 as I could imagine just how awesome that must have been for the youth at the time.

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The Mole-Men who live under the Earth are the “Bad” guys of this first Superman movie but are they really all that bad as they are brought to the up to the surface world due to the actions of mankind who affected their world with their quest for oil and gas. And because they feel they are being attacked they go on the attack and come above ground with their weapons and are looking for answers when one of their own is shot and injured by a mob of humans who hate them because they look different. The Mole Men also have their skin glows in the dark and they are short in height. The Mole Men in the film are played by actors Billy Curtis, John T. Bambury, Jerry Maren and Johnny Roventini all who do a great job in the role and while Mole People might not be the meanest or deadliest foes Superman has fought in the movies they sure are strange and interesting ones.

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George Reeves was born on January 5, 1914 in Woolstock, Iowa and had it semi rough growing up as his father left the family almost after his birth and he and his mother moved around and stayed in Kentucky as well as Illinois. And finally they settled in California and that is when Frank Bessolo entered their life and he married George’s mother and adopted him at the age of 13, and after 15 years of marriage the two separated and his mother would lie to him and say that Frank committed suicide…when in fact he was alive and well and would pass away many years later and George was unaware of this fact for many years. And starting around 1939 is when George Reeves started his acting career and even landed a small role in the film “Gone With The Wind” and through the 1940’s would be in many films including titles like “The Fighting 69th”, “Torrid Zone”, “Dead Men Tell”, “Jungle Goddess”, “Samson And Delilah” and “The Good Humor Man” to name a very small few, as while he was never a main leading man he had that star quality. And in 1951 his luck changed when he was casted as Superman in both the film “Superman And The Mole Men” as well as the TV Show “The Adventures Of Superman” that would last 6 seasons and a total of 104 episodes and was a super popular show among kids and adults and George Reeves was Superman in the publics eyes. And this big role would also be a curse while he would get some small work during and after his run a Superman much of his roles had him playing the superhero such as his 1957 appearance on “I Love Lucy” on the episode Lucy And Superman. But in is personal life Reeves was said to be depressed over the typecasting of the Superman role and on June 16, 1959 it is said that George Reeves committed suicide by gunshot, while other do think that he was murdered and it was cover-up. George Reeves is one of the best actors to ever play Superman and is for me on par with Christopher Reeve as I think both of them embodied the heroic nature and character. While George Reeves was gone from this world way to soon his work lives on and his biggest cursed role is why he is still a well-loved actor to this day.

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The tragic death of George Reeves was really a bummer to his fans and sadly for some has tainted the joy his portrayal of Superman brought them as it’s been rumored that that role is what drove him to depression, but please do not allow this tragic event to ruin your love for the show as it really is a fun and wholesome entertainment that is still enjoyed to this day. And now we are at the part of the update that we will be reviewing this Photo Comic Graphic Novel that was released by Fanzine and thanks to Amazon for having this graphic novel in stock and making this update possible. I also would like to remind you that I grade these comics on a star scale of 1 to 4 and am looking for how well the comics stay to the source material, it’s entertainment value and it’s art and story. Now if your are ready lets look up to the sky as is that a bird? A plan? Or is it just Superman done as a Photo Comic?

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Superman And The Mole Men GN  **1/2
Released in 2020      Cover Price $13.00      Fanzine       # 1 of 1

Lois Lane and Clark Kent travel to the small town of Silsby to write about the worlds deepest oil well, but when they arrive to cover it they are shocked when they are told by foreman Mr. Corrigan that the well has been shutdown and word had come down from the top of the company to do so. As Clark and Lois are about to leave he notices that all of the workmen’s tools are thrown into a hole and this intrigues him. When the Oil company puts them up in a motel for the night and keys the a company car Lois and Clark decide to visit the Oil Well again and head toward it, meanwhile at the well three little Mole Men come out of the ground and scare the old night man to death! And when Lois and Clark show up and find the body, Lois spots the Mole Men and freaks out and the sheriff is called up and she has to tell him what she has seen and that she thinks the Mole Men she spotted is who killed the watch man, and when the Doctor shows up he rules the death a heart attack. And while Lois heads back to the hotel Clark stays with Mr. Corrigan to wait for the Undertaker and when everyone is gone Clark gets the truth out of Corrigan about the well closing and that they found possible radiation, living organisms as well as that the center of the Earth is hollow! And things get worse when the townspeople find out about the creatures Luke Benson feeds them all fear and creates mobs in order to kill the visitors as they all now think that they are dangerous because the stuff they touch starts glowing. And when the Mole Men make the mistake of trying to befriend a young girl who’s mother freaks out, the townspeople are filled with rage and go on the hunt, and even when Clark sneaks away to turn into Superman he can not get them to calm down as Luke is the issue as he keeps winding people up. Luke and his mob end up shooting one of the Mole Men that Superman has to rush to the hospital, and they think they burn the other alive in a shed who by luck escapes and goes back down the oil well. As Luke and his mob head toward the hospital when the find out the wounded Mole Man is there as they want to kill him Superman runs them off just as more Mole Men appear with a laser gun in order to get their wounded friend back, and Superman is able to return the would Mole Man to his people as well as save Luke from a laser blast and in the end Superman and Lois watch as the Mole Men blow up the entrance to their world as they just want to be left alone.

What a fun and simple Photo Comic GN that does a good job of bringing the film to the pages and feels like a quick read and is truly a wholesome Superman adventure. As the plot is very simple and has Superman trying to teach a small town that just because someone is different does not mean you should hurt them. Superman does his best to try and keep law and order as a town goes wild and crazed and mob rule is the mindset all do to one mans hate filled words. Superman also does a great job of saving the Mole Men and the town people from being killed and shows that he hates bullies as well as the miss use of guns as at one point he takes all of them from the mob when someone almost shoots Lois Lane by accident. Luke Benson is a total idiot who hates to hate and over takes the town by making every one afraid of the unknown and they even over take the law as they over power and lock up the sheriff! And even after being a scum bag to everyone and causing injuries Superman still saves Luke from taking a laser blast to the chest. The Mole Men are not bad at all and are just discovering the upper world and mean zero harm, and because of their strange look they are hated and hunted and one is injured badly and his own people are forced to try and rescue him and when they do so they blowup the entrance to their world as they want nothing to do with mankind. This Photo Comic also took a black and white film and took stills and added color to them and oddly it works in a charming way, as the colors are basic but some how it adds to the fun nature of this story. And once more I have to stress this comics plot just like the movie is very simple and yet now in days has that classic feel of being good and understanding is what is right. The cover for this graphic novel is a little boring and underwhelming and the interior is stills from the film that have been colored in and dialogue added in, so that is good if you like photo comics. Over all this is a great read if you like the film its based on or just very kid friendly Superman stories, while I do think the cover price is a little high I do say its worth a buy for fans. Check out the photo art below to see they style used in this comic.

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So as you can see, this Photo Comic Graphic Novel is a pretty good and entertaining read, but I know for many of you readers the fact that it is a Photo Comic will scare you away from checking it out, and I do understand as these type of comics are not for everyone. But I say if you like Superman as played by George Reeves I would give this at least a chance no matter how you feel about the style of comic. I should also note that Anthony Koontz is the man behind Fanzine and these Photo Comic Graphic Novels and he has also done ones based on “Invasion Of The Body Snatchers” and “Brain The Wouldn’t Die” and yes both of those will be getting the Rotten Ink treatment sometime in the future. So we are now getting even closer to our big Christmas Eve update and the next topic is something that many of you fellow kids of the 80’s will remember as it will be SilverHawks! So until next time read a Superman comic or three, watch a Superman film or two and as always support your local Horror Host…and I know those of you from Cleveland, Ohio did as you guys had Superhost! See you next time for a screeching silver metal hawk good time.

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American Hero: G.I. Zombie

Welcome back to Rotten Ink, and Happy 4th of July! And I am sure you are like me and waiting for the fireworks to fill the sky while eating some grilled food and chatting with friends, and as well thinking about American Heroes.  Today’s topic is a strange one as he is a zombie, a solider and a hero! I am talking about the DC Horror character Jared Kabe also known as G.I. Zombie who is a member of the U.S. Army in the DC Universe and does what he can to keep our nation safe! So while the burgers are on the grill and the fireworks are still a little while away, let’s take a look at the American Hero: G.I. Zombie. And also keep in mind this is 10 Years of Rotten Ink, and I would like for you readers to take a moment and think about your favorite hero in your life from the past or present and to sit back a relax and as always thank you for spending a small part of your Holiday with Rotten Ink.

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Jared Kabe is an American Army Soldier who has been working for the government for many decades and has been involved in many wars for his country, and he as lasted as the nation’s ultimate soldier for so many years because he is in fact dead and is a zombie that is sent into what would be suicide missions for any living soldier! So if there are bio weapons in play, chemical attacks or even good old-fashioned zombie plagues, the man for the job is Jared Kabe who is code-named G.I. Zombie. The powers that Jared has are that he is skilled in military combat, he is stronger than a normal living human, he has great use of his senses, can regenerate after being wounded and more important he is immortal! The character of G.I. Zombie was the created by the creative team of Jimmy Palmiotti, Scott Hampton and Justin Gray in 2014 for DC Comics who was making an attempt to update their universe. And weird enough G.I. Zombie is not really used by DC Comics anymore and for the most part he only lasted the one-year of his release. While not a major player in the world of DC Horror or even DC War Heroes, he is still an interesting character who had his readers that enjoyed his issues.

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G.I. Zombie is a character that I just learned about in late 2021, or should I say paid attention too as he was never on my radar as in modern times I have paid very little attention to DC Comics and he just never was a Horror Comic that I picked up at the local comic shops as most of the time I have found most of DC’s Horror Comic work to be a little weak with Swamp Thing, Man-Bat and House Of Mystery being the ones that I find to be really good. And I think really that in 2014 the Zombie comic trained started by Walking Dead from Image Comics has started to be over done and that is also why I paid no attention to G.I. Zombie. Over the years I have found myself being a little less picky about Horror Comics I read when it comes to the big two companies Marvel & DC as sometimes they are the better offerings they have as their main Superhero titles have been very poorly written for many years now in my opinion, and the Horror titles I feel lets the creators have a little more freedom in the stories they are telling. What makes me intrigued about G.I. Zombie is that I know nothing about the character and I am looking forward to seeing if they play more on the spooky aspect of the character or the army hero…or will it be a great blend of the two? Regardless of what angle DC Comics goes with the character I will say that Jared Kabe aka G.I. Zombie is an American Hero in the world of Comic Books and that is why he is getting this American Hero update.

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So as you can see, the burgers are almost done on the grill and it’s inching so much closer to firework time so I think we should get into the comic review part of this American Hero update that I have to say is also a DC Horror update for this 10 Year Celebration for Rotten Ink! I want to thank Game Swap Kettering and Lone Star Comics for having these issues in stock and making this update possible. I want to also remind you that I grade these comics on a star scale of 1 to 4 and am looking for how well the comics stay to the source material, its entertainment value and its art and story. So grab a sparkler and your favorite cold beverage, and let’s make a toast to G.I. Zombie and see what his comic series was all about. Oh and on a side note, this series is called “Star Spangled War Stories G.I. Zombie” but for the sake of this update we will just shorten the title to G.I. Zombie.

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G.I. Zombie # 1  ***
Released in 2014     Cover Price $2.99    DC Comics    # 1 of 8

At a small bar in the backwoods of Mississippi recent released female prisoner Carmen King meets Duke and his men who have just captured a F.B.I Agent and have him tied up in the back of the bar and worse the Agent have been beaten up and will not spill the beans on how many are with him and were they are based out of. Carmen in order to impress Duke and get a job with his outlaw gang tortures and shoots the Agent in the head killing him when her interrogation does not work. Carmen takes the body of the agent away and Duke sets up a night meeting time for the two. We soon find out that the agent is G.I. Zombie who repairs his body and that Carmen is working with him. The two while having to work together do not know each other and Carmen is a little nervous about having to stay in a motel with a zombie. As Carmen takes a shower and then goes to bed, G.I. Zombie sneaks out of the room and ends up attacking and killing a man who was abusing his wife in front of a gas station, he kills the man to eat him…but sadly he does so in front of the mans wife and child. Later that night Carmen and Zombie head to the farm that is were Duke told Carmen to meet him, and they have a car wreck when Carmen hits a deer and they have to travel by foot. Once they arrive at the farm the notice that Duke and his gang of outlaws have missiles!

The first issue of G.I. Zombie is really good and they drop us right into the story that has our undead solider teaming up with a female agent in order to bring down an outlaw group that is dealing in stolen guns and more. We learn that G.I. Zombie has been around for a very long time and has always survived his country and really loves America, we also see that while he is a good guy he still craves human flesh and feeds on it when he can get it. His uncanny powers of not being able to die and being able to reattach cut off limbs and heal up his wounds is really cool and very useful in his line of work. Carmen King from what we gather is a good solider/agent who is doing her job, but clearly only kind of trust her undead partner, as she knows very little about him and his character. Duke and his gang are a bunch of outlaws who look like they deal in all types of crime from murder to stolen guns and I am sure while he looks like the big fish now, someone else is truly calling the shots. The comic has some blood and gore in it and that was nice to see and some moments are gruesome like when G.I. Zombie is shot in the head by Carmen so she could impress Duke and his gang. The issue also does a great job of ending on a cliffhanger as our heroes see missiles are part of the groups weapons they have stockpiled and this is proof that Duke is working for a bigger threat. The cover for issue one is really good and eye catching and captures both the War and Horror aspects of the series, and the interior art by Scott Hampton is not the style I like in comics but it is really good work. Over all a great start for this series, and I am looking forward to see what happens in issue two.

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G.I. Zombie # 2  ***
Released in 2014     Cover Price $2.99    DC Comics    # 2 of 8

Carmen arrives alone at the gate and is let in to see Duke after she alerts the guard that she has had a car wreck and that is why she is late. Meanwhile G.I. Zombie is out in the woods and takes out one of Duke’s men and then takes another hostage with the threat of eating him alive he is able to get some info as well as the man’s cellphone in order to hear the communication between the rest of the outlaws. While inside a deadly virus has been delivered to Duke and as the two that dropped it off leave G.I. Zombie is able to snap a picture of them and send it to his bosses via the stolen phone. Carmen is shown by Duke a massive pot field on the farm compound and he then starts talking to her about his distaste for the government and if she has the same dislike he wants to offer her a job with his group. But G.I. Zombie is spotted and the alarm goes off and Duke has Carmen leave with some of his people to go to another secret farm compound while G.I. Zombie has a shootout with the outlaws, and Zombie gets back up when Commander Gravedigger and fellow soldiers show up to help in the fight. Duke has his men fire off one of the missiles that has the virus inside it and its headed toward Washington D.C., but G.I. Zombie jumps on the missile and pulls out wires and causes it to crash into a small town in Tennessee.

This second issue is as good as the first as this story progresses and has me drawn in on what is going to happen next! In this issue Carmen and G.I. Zombie make it to the farm hideout of Duke and his militia outlaw group and while Carmen gets deeper in their ranks, G.I. Zombie finds himself trying to stop a virus carrying missile that will have collateral damage of human life. G.I. Zombie in this issue shows that he is also very skilled in combat as he uses guns as well as his zombie ways to take out many of the outlaws and its clear that he is very hard to stop and those who face him seen see the horror that this solider can inflict on them. Carmen meanwhile has to play it cool and build up trust with Duke who is clearly a very dangerous man who is now also getting bio-weapons from some government agency or maybe its ones made up of former workers, we will have to read more issues to find out. And Duke and his outlaw militia clearly are dangerous and do not care about how many people die in their quest to stick it to the government, and they have all tools and weapons to really be a threat. I like how the officer in charge of this mission is called Gravedigger, a nice touch sense he is in charge of a zombie soldier. The issue has some good blood and gore moments of G.I. Zombie eating some flesh and the story is really good and does a good job of keeping you interested as a reader. The cover for this issue I have is cool and eye catching even though it’s also misleading as G.I. Zombie does not parachute into battle at all. The interior art is done by Scott Hampton and is again really good if you like the more modern style art in comic books. With that the series is staying strong and I want to see what chaos this missile is going to cause and what will Carmen witness next from this outlaw group.

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G.I. Zombie # 3  ***
Released in 2014     Cover Price $2.99    DC Comics    # 3 of 8

The missile goes down in Tennessee and G.I. Zombie knows that the virus inside it will cause a zombie outbreak and it seems that the animals around are now attacking him in aggression is it cause of the virus or are they just scared. Meanwhile Gravedigger has captured Duke who is not giving up any information on what his group is truly up to and who is the people behind getting them the weapons. Meanwhile Carmen is with some of the outlaws on their way to the farm and she is trying to get as much information out of them as possible. Back in the small town the animals are infected by the virus and when they are biting people its making them infected as well with a sort of rabies that is turning everyone in contract with a bite into a zombie in seconds. G.I. Zombie ties up an infected person and finds the towns doctor when they find that the people who are infected are pretty much brain dead and a cure is unlikely, and then the G.I. Zombie safely gets the doctor and her assistant home safe and then gets the towns exits from the mayor to give to Gravedigger who is on his way with soldiers to try and contain the outbreak. As G.I. Zombie waits on one of the bridges out of town he is attack by a horde of zombies and is fighting them off, as he cannot let one single human or animal that is infected to leave the town.

This poor small town gets infected by a virus that was unleashed by a nut job who is anti government, but all he did was hurt the innocent people in a town by infecting them and the animals with a zombie rabies! We know that the animals are the first to be infected by the virus and that when they bite people the virus passes and they become raging zombies who kill and infect others. G.I. Zombie is not scared of being infected but does hate watching and having to kill the animals and feels bad for the people who are being hunted down by those infected, but when it comes to protecting the innocent people as well as the fellow towns he goes into solider mode and will do what must be done. Meanwhile Carmen is still on her road trip to the other farm and is not getting too much information for her female road buddy. Gravedigger and his soldiers have captured Duke and are now on their way to the infected town to back up G.I. Zombie to contain the virus the best they can. The end also is a nice cliffhanger as G.I. Zombie armed with a knife is being over taken by a massive zombie horde that are on the path of getting out of the town and spreading this infection to a wider population. The issue has some blood and really is doing a great job of keeping me interested in the storyline as well as wondering what is next for the characters. The cover for this issue is really cool and has G.I. Zombie fighting a zombie horde and like before the interior artwork by Scott Hampton is good stuff. DC Comics and the creators behind this series have delivered a good series this far and let’s see if they can keep it up in the fourth issue.

G.I. Zombie # 4  ***
Released in 2015     Cover Price $2.99    DC Comics    # 4 of 8

Carmen and her escort who’s named Cat find a motel room and while trying to rest she has a nightmare about a helicopter crash she was the only survivor in during a war, and even when up she can not get any info out of Cat about were they are going. Meanwhile G.I. Zombie breaks free from the zombie horde and finds a safe place on top of a building and watches as Gravedigger and the army show up and blow up the zombies, once G.I. Zombie joins them they find that the infected can drive some what and this adds to the possibility of them leaving the town so Gravedigger and G.I. Zombie must act fast to fully contain this. Meanwhile Cat and Carmen arrive at a massive spa in the middle of nowhere that is the hidden base and Carmen meets Forrest, the money man behind Duke and his movement, and she also notices that he himself has weapons of all types around him.

This issue is very fast paced and we get more information on many of the characters as well as some questions are answered. G.I. Zombie himself goes from being out numbered and fighting off zombies to escaping the attack and spending some time on a flat tar roof of a store and ends the issue alongside the army and Gravedigger as they try and figure out the best way to stop this virus from spreading. While on the other hand, we learn that Carmen was the sole survivor of a helicopter crash and this is what haunts her dreams and drives her to protect her country.  We also see that she might be in over her head when she finally arrives at the next hidden base location as it is packed with weapons. Forrest is a rich man who is clearly the moneyman behind this home grown terrorist group and is investing in even more weapons to fight the fight and this includes more of the zombie virus as well as suits that can take bullets and is indestructible! I really think that Forrest and his indestructible suits will be a huge pain for G.I. Zombie in the coming issues, I also hope that Carmen’s cover is not blown as the odds would be against her as her army friends have no clue to were she is even at. The issue has some blood and the story is good as the zombies can drive adds even more drama, horror and stress for the army to deal with! The cover is great and has G.I. Zombie and Carmen backed into a massive tree on a hill and are surrounded by zombies and this is very eye catching. And like a broken record the interior art by Scott Hampton is good stuff, so with that said again I have to say that DC Comics are on a good stretch as this was another great issue and G.I. Zombie is proven to be one of their best modern series for me. So let’s see what issue five has in store for us, and I am going to guess it will be a fun Horror War Comic surrounded by a simple yet entertaining story.

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G.I. Zombie # 5  ***
Released in 2015     Cover Price $2.99    DC Comics    # 5 of 8

G.I. Zombie is back in the small town and is having issues as his craving for flesh is taking control as he needs to eat and soon before he loses control, so they send for a child killer on death row and is sent into a tent with Zombie who eats him and gets back on track to save America. Meanwhile Carmen is shown around the base by Forrest who alerts her to some of the over all plan that he and his groups have for the world, that includes over throwing the US Government and give the power to the people. Meanwhile a few miles away the this base G.I. Zombie meets up with longtime agent friend Elliot who fills him in on the last sighting of Carmen and tells him of the base that is also acting as a spa for the rich, he also tells him to head to this small motel down the road and he will find his “new” identity as a video game maker who has a treatment set at the spa for the next day. Later as G.I. Zombie sits alone in his room a young woman named Libby enters and is running for her life as she hides in his bathroom as two men are following her, after exchanging some words with them Zombie takes them down only to be shot in the head by Libby who is the true baddie as she works for Forrest and after cleaning the room she is taking the bodies to the spa hideout for disposal.

The plot thickens in the fifth issue as we now know that Forrest and all of those who follow or are apart of his group’s true goal is to take over America as they claim they want the power back to the people, but somehow I feel that Forrest has other true plans and is using these militia groups and ex-criminals to further along his true underline plan that I can not figure out yet. Poor Carmen is truly stuck in a very dangerous situation as she is truly in the hornet’s nest and has seen and heard too much to be figured out as a spy as they would and could easily kill her. Libby and Cat are also two females who work for Forrest and it’s clear that they will also kill for him on his orders and will leave no loose ends. Gravedigger and Elliot are two of the good guys who clearly want to try and stop this group from doing another attack as they have unleashed a virus once that has taken way to many innocent human and animal lives, and they both know that G.I. Zombie is America’s only hope. Speaking of G.I. Zombie we have all seen up to this point how much of a good undead guy he is who is always helpful, respectful and follows orders…but I do love that he does have the urge and craving for human flesh and that the army gives him inmates of the worst kind from near by prisons in order to fill the hunger! A very cool aspect of the character as he could snap and kill if he is not fed after a while. The story is really keeping me intrigued and I like the small turns we get as well as the character development and new characters being added into our story. This issue has some blood and murder and the cover is a strange one as its G.I. Zombie kissing a woman and blood is linking their lips, and you know the interior art is done by Hampton and is good. So with another good issue in the books let’s see what issue six has in store for us.

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G.I. Zombie # 6  ***
Released in 2015     Cover Price $2.99    DC Comics    # 6 of 8

Forrest is on the phone and is calling Leo, the man who is making the zombie virus in Ecuador and explains that the sample has been used in Tennessee and was a success and that he needs his full shipment sent, Leo is annoyed that Duke used it already and agrees to send more, but it comes with a threat if the virus is linked back to him. Forrest then leaves and creeps around Carmen’s room and half hearted flirts with her before leaving. Meanwhile Carmen tries to sneak around to find a phone to call Gravedigger, but instead runs into Cat and they both go and get a midnight snack from the kitchen. G.I. Zombie who was set to be burned up in a furnace snaps into action and takes down several guards and top officials for Forrest and even finds his gun stockpile room before he himself is caught on a security camera and a red alert goes out to the guards. Forrest recognizes G.I. Zombie and knows that he works for the Government and tells Libby to get the jet ready that they along with a few other including Cat and Carmen are leaving the hideout, and the rest of the people will sadly die as he is dropping a nuke bomb on it as he can not have any information leak out!

The gig is up at the spa hideout of Forrest and his crew of over throwers and his big plan to deal with being caught is for him and few to escape and them bomb and kill all the others who have been loyal to him and the cause, so it shows you that Forrest is a rich a-hole who does not care about anything but himself as I am sure if push comes to shove the likes of Libby and Cat would be sacrificed if it meant saving his own hide. And Carmen is really trapped as she keeps getting deeper into the trust of these people and this makes it so if she is exposed for being an undercover agent, she will be killed and the worst part is her own people are always a few steps behind her in order to save or get the information she has out of her. Also it looks like Leo and his people are surly the ones behind the creation of the virus and this also shows that this network is even bigger and spread out then what it appears in the first few issues. G.I. Zombie snaps into action and goes after the baddies in their own base and uses a knife and a gun to deal death and gets a few before being caught on a security camera, he so wants to get to Carmen and also complete this mission before anymore innocent Americans are hurt. Some blood and death in this one with a gruesome one being a man set on fire and then gets a knife to his skill as he ran around, pretty brutal kill from G.I. Zombie. The cover is our hero being nuked and you all know by now who did the art and that it’s good stuff. Over all a great issue that leaves us on a good cliffhanger of the hideout being blown up and only a few of Forrest closest crew escaping along side him, can G.I. Zombie stop the bomb and save lives or will be apart of the explosion…I guess we have to read issue seven to find out.

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G.I. Zombie # 7  ***
Released in 2015     Cover Price $2.99    DC Comics    # 7 of 8

Forrest has set the timer for the nuke bomb to go off and he along with a select few have escaped the hideout via a private jet set for California to another secret lab hideout. Meanwhile G.I. Zombie tries to figure out a way to stop the bomb from going off and soon finds that that task is impossible and that everyone inside this hideout is going to die. Gravedigger meanwhile along with a hammer is able to get a little bit of information out of Duke and he learns just how dangerous this group is as they plan to truly unleash a massive attack on America. While stealing a car and trying to get as far away from the explosion as possible G.I. Zombie is able to get a cellphone and call Gravedigger to tell him about what is going to happen and sure enough the bomb goes off and also unleashes more of the zombie virus, the explosion causes G.I. Zombie to wreck and he is even injured cause of this, and he is saved just in time by some Army guys as two civilians who was hit by the virus tried to kill him. Meanwhile at the new hideout Carmen makes a run for it as she thinks Forrest and the others have caught on that she is an agent, and after calling Gravedigger she is surrounded by heavily armed guards. In the end Gravedigger alerts G.I. Zombie that they have to leave now and try and stop this Armageddon style attack that Forrest is about to commit.

That Forrest is one evil man as not only has he killed innocent people and animals with his zombie virus but this time around he used a bomb to blow up his discovered hideout killing hundreds of his own workers in order to cover his own butt. Plus it’s clear that he is more like a rich doomsday cult leader than a give the people the power one. Duke the big bad biker leader of the Mississippi sure does squeal when a hammer is taken to his fingers in order to get questions answered as this also proves Gravedigger will do what he must in order to save America from this threat, and that includes bashing a mans fingers with a hammer. Carmen is was over her head and its clear that by the end of this issue she is spooked by Forrest and his people as she thinks they have made out that she is an agent spy, and when escaping the hideout she also shows that she is a skilled fighter as she takes a gun with only four bullets and makes it work. G.I. Zombie does what he can to try and figure out how to stop the bomb and how to save the workers inside, but sadly time was just not on his side. While he is undead it shows that he still cares about living people even if most fear him. We also see that the end game is near as Forrest is about to set off tons of his zombie virus in order to shake up America, and we have to see in the next issue if G.I. Zombie and this secret branch of the Army can stop it. This issue also is more about building to the final issue and is less about the horror aspects, don’t get me wrong we still get blood and death, it’s just a little more toned down. The stakes feel high coming up as the threat is world changing and the fact that only a small few know and can stop this also adds to the drama. The cover for this issue is eye catching and has G.I. Zombie fighting zombies and you know what I am going to say for the interior art. Over all a great issue that was perfect for setting up the final issue in the mini series.

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G.I. Zombie # 8  **1/2
Released in 2015     Cover Price $2.99     DC Comics     # 8 of 8

Carmen escapes the ambush and is able to kill all the armed guards that was sent after her, she has a mission to stop this threat and that is just what she is going to do. Meanwhile G.I. Zombie and Gravedigger board a jet and head to the next hidden base of the outlaw terrorist in hope to stop them as well as save Carmen from danger. Back at the hideout Forrest decides that Cat is the one who brought the agent to their doorstep and puts a bullet in her brain for doing so. Once at the location G.I. Zombie, Gravedigger and the team find Carmen and go into the base with orders to stop the bomb and kill anyone inside as they are terrorist and need to be taken down. Carmen and G.I. Zombie enter the base and take out anyone they come across and finally they find Forrest who has set another bomb to go off to let the virus out all over and spread this zombie infection. Forrest has a past with G.I. Zombie as once they see each other they both realize they have a past, and when Carmen decides she has had enough she beats up Forrest as G.I. Zombie alerts Gravedigger to the location of the launch room and as well gets Forrest’s cellphone and calls Leo the creator of the virus and says that they are coming for him as well! Gravedigger lets off a sonic device that not only takes out the terrorist who are not wearing earplugs but also gives them time to find the main power and to stop the bomb from going off. In the end Gravedigger tells G.I. Zombie and Carmen that they make a great team and that they will be placed together from now on.

I am not going to lie I am a little disappointed in the ending of this series as I found the wrap up to be a little weak and not pack a punch like it should. While the good guys do stop the bomb from going off, characters like Forrest just don’t seem to really get what is coming to him, sure he gets shot in the ear and beat up…but his “death” by sonic vibes is a little bland. I also feel that the fact that they call and alert Leo that they know who he is and that they are coming after him also was a strange move as now all he has to do is relocate…why warn him. I do like the team up of Carmen and G.I. Zombie and I would have liked to seen more of them, maybe even at some point teaming alongside the Creature Commandos or even Unknown Soldier. I also feel that the end “battle” was way to easy and quick and all of a sudden Forrest and his men seem less threatening as they fall like a house of cards on a windy day, and it really is disappointing as the creators of this series did such a great job building to this last issue and for this comic reader it fell a little flat. Now I am not saying I didn’t enjoy this issue, it’s just a weak ending to a very solid series. G.I. Zombie is a very interesting character that we have learned lots about in this series as he is an American Army member who even in death tries to protect the land that he loves and is a true warrior and skilled in fighting and strategies, and that a lost body part of his is what helped create the zombie virus being used by the terrorist. We also see that he is a caring man as he looks out for not only his agent friends but also innocent people and animals. Carmen is also a pretty cool character an army vet who survived a terrible crash during war and is using her skills still to help keep America safe and to honor her fallen friends. Gravedigger is pretty cool as well as he clearly is a veteran of situations like this and does not crack under pressure. This mini series really did do a great job of mixing Horror and War Comics with elements of both getting time to shine and the amount of blood used throughout was a nice touch for those readers who loved zombie comics, plus bonus points to them for some of the more gruesome deaths. The cover for this issue is pretty cool and lacks the punch of the covers before it and throughout the series Scott Hampton has really rocked it with his art and won me over as at first I was not a fan of the style, but by the end I really liked and respected it. Over all DC Comics had a good series here and a cool character that they should still be using today! Check out the artwork below to see the style of Scott Hampton used in this series.

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But wait there is more! Given that this is July 4th and Rotten Ink’s 10 Year Anniversary, let’s take a look at G.I. Zombie special that was released in 2014 and was part of the “Future Ends” stories that DC Comics had going at the time. So with that, let’s dive into this one and spend just a little more time with G.I. Zombie.

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G.I. Zombie: Special # 1  **
Released in 2014     Cover Price $3.99    DC Comics     # 1 of 1

G.I. Zombie is on a ship and his partner Carmen has been infected with the virus and is now a flesh eating zombie and doctors are going to try a treatment that they hope will help her. But things get worse when zombies are parachuting out of the sky and are now attacking the agents and G.I. Zombie is given the orders to attack and get these undead nightmares off the ship. And he does so when he charges into them and turns into a massive deformed zombie that rips many of them to shreds, but he is attacked by the helicopter that dropped the zombies off and is taken down for a few moments before he can comeback together. The scientists deliver the antidote to Carmen and at first it looks as if it didn’t, work but just in time she is cured as G.I. Zombie pulls himself together and they come up with a plan to drop the antidote from a crop duster on the city of Gotham that has been infected by the virus. But the enemy helicopter approaches and shoots down the crop duster, but G.I. Zombie is able to leap into the copter and gets it to crash…and the man behind this attack is Gravedigger who himself is now a zombie that is just like G.I. Zombie and the two fight for a moment when G.I. Zombie removes his head and takes it away causing Gravediggers body to wonder around, after this fight G.I. Zombie gives the order for the antidote to be dropped so that lives can be saved. Later G.I. Zombie and Carmen are having dinner and she has decided to retire as an agent and go live in the mountains, while G.I. Zombie is sad, he understands and the two enjoy one last meal together.

What a strange One-Shot comic as everything we know from the mini series is thrown out of the water and in this one G.I. Zombie is calling the shots, the army has found a cure for the virus, Carmen goes from being a zombie to cure and the most weird change is that now Gravedigger is pro the virus infecting people and is now a bad guy that is as well a super zombie solider who is taken down very easily by G.I. Zombie. And so many questions are not answered in the comic and that’s why this is a very odd read like why is Gravedigger bad now, who is spreading the virus and why, why is Gotham City under attack and why does G.I. Zombie turn into a massive zombie Hulk for a few panels and then its never spoke of again…just so many weird moments in this one that made it slightly less enjoyable of a read as I really do feel that this story kind of disrespects the characters and story that the mini series introduced us to and I dislike the fighting and large changes to personalities of the main three and those of course as G.I. Zombie, Carmen King and Gravedigger. The story also seems very bland and rushed and I hate to say this was a major letdown for me, as I feel that DC had something very cool with G.I. Zombie and this comic makes him and the lore seem like an after thought to just delivering a comic with a cheesy gimmick cover that while cool does not save this issue from being lazy. The interior artwork by Scott Hampton is good and helps bring some of the charm from the mini series into this. Not much to say besides this is just an ok issue and if you like the mini series and have not read this one I say skip it as it does nothing but ruins aspects of the series. Checkout the artwork below, and again art is good sadly this comic story is not.

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Well it’s time to go eat some grilled food and enjoy time with family and friends before the fireworks fill the sky, so once more thanks for spending some of your holiday with me here at Rotten Ink and also I need to say that while DC Comics had a few miss fires with G.I. Zombie, I do feel that in 2014 they created a good American Hero character that truly did walk the line between War and Horror. Well for the next update we will be leaving the DC Universe Zombies behind but will be once more visiting the Romero Zombies when we cover Dead Dog Comics series “Night Of The Living Dead: The Barbara Chronicles” as well as take a look at Monster Bash Convention 2022 and Juliet and I’s adventures in Cranberry Township, PA. So until next time, read a comic or three, watch a zombie film or two and as always support your local Horror Host! See you soon as we are coming to read you Barbara…

NOTLD Barbra Chronicles Preview Logo

The DC Dream Warrior Known As The Sandman!

Here on Rotten Ink we love ourselves some Jack Kirby as he really is The King when it comes to the Golden Age of comics as over the years I have covered him in such blog updates based on his art and characters like Devil Dinosaur, Captain America and Satan’s Six and with many more to come this update will showcase just how important Jack is to the world of comics as well as Rotten Ink and how can I celebrate my blogs 10 Year Anniversary without covering him! While thinking about what character to cover for this update I ruled out one of his Marvel Comics characters as we have covered his Marvel work already and I also ruled out his indie work as well for the same reason and that’s why I landed on covering his DC Comics work and choose a character that I can remember reading when I was a kid and that’s The Sandman! So grab a glass of Warm Milk, Count Some Sheep and lets catch some Z’s and take a comic book superhero adventure with The Sandman, Jack Kirby and DC Comics.

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Jack Kirby was a true legend at Marvel Comics as he has created many iconic characters for them along side Stan Lee like The Fantastic Four, Iron Man and The Incredible Hulk to name a few, but in late 1970 after years of talking to them he made the jump to DC Comics as they wanted the creative mind of Kirby to help bring them new characters as well as his skilled art style. The contract was for three years with an option for two more years and would allow him to create multiple series and characters that would be blanketed under “The Fourth World” and would allow Jack to have his own say with his characters and build his own world within the DC Universe. And that brought characters New Gods, Mister Miracle and The Forever People to comic pages and all characters are still being used from time to time in comics for DC. During his early years he also worked on the comic Superman’s Pal Jimmy Olsen. And Jack Kirby was loving working on his Fourth World comics and added touches of his own life into the books, as well as even his views of the youth at the time in The Forever People. At this point in time Jack Kirby had lots of bad feelings toward Stan Lee and Marvel Comics and even created a character called Funky Flashman that was a dig at Lee, and would also create during this time DC Comic’s biggest and more powerful super-villains Darkseid. But while DC Comics was hoping for that Kirby magic and help sales they also did some pretty crappy things to him like having fellow artists Al Plastino and Murphy Anderson redraw the faces of Superman in comics as they did not like his style of drawing The Man Of Steels face. Jack Kirby was so proud of his Fourth World books he even came up with the idea of putting several issues together aka the Graphic Novel and DC being goofy failed to do so, so those of you who love reading comics in Graphic Novels should thank Jack Kirby who came up with that idea. During his years with DC he would also go on to create such characters as OMAC, The Demon, Kamandi, Kobra, The Sandman and as well did a few characters for the “1st Issue Special” comic series like Manhunter, Dingbats Of Danger Street and Atlas The Great showing that the characters where flowing from his creative mind. He would also do work for the war comic “Our Fighting Forces” by doing the stories and art for The Losers. But by 1974 the honeymoon was over between Kirby and DC Comics as they started to make him work on characters he did not care for, the political games at the office was out of control and many of the classic DC Artists did not want Kirby at DC as they viewed him as an outsider and a threat to their position at DC. And by 1976 Jack Kirby and DC Comic split ways and he would return to work for Marvel for a short time, before becoming a gun for hire artist and working for Cartoons for Hanna-Barbara as well as would do spot work for indies like Topps Comics and Pacific Comics as well as even DC up until his passing in 1994. And while his time with DC Comics was not as grand as his time with Marvel he still made a great impact on that company given them some amazing heroes and villains as well as entertained readers with compelling stories. Jack “The King” Kirby really is one of the comic industries truly iconic and inspirational artists and creators.

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I want to also take a moment to share a photo I found on the net that shows the art desk of Jack Kiby! This is a surreal image for sure as you realize that he had drawn so many comic pages at the desk, he created so many characters at the desk and he spent so much time being creative at that desk. The crazy part being is the chair, desk and his art supply cabinet was nothing overly fancy and his area he created in was near what appears to be a fire place. Imagine Jack Kirby sitting at the art table with a snow storm outside and a fire going in the fireplace as he drew a Fantastic Four page…its very inspiring as Jack really was one of a kind and a true artist who was to be looked up to and admired. I feel that Jack’s desk should be placed in a museum of art and young inspiring artists should be able to see it and get inspired by it.

Jack King Kirbys Desk

Now I want to talk a little about The Sandman a character created by Jack Kirby and Joe Simon in 1974 and was one of many characters Kirby created when working for DC Comics. The Sandman is a hero that lives in the Dream Dome alongside his two friends Brute and Glob who are nightmare creatures and are called in when The Sandman cannot right the wrongs that are going on in the dream world as well as reality. The Sandman can enter the dream world via a sled that takes him to the Dream Stream a place ruled by the Nightmare Wizard where all the creatures that make up Nightmares live. He can also slide into reality and can lend a hand to help during attacks and natural disasters. The Sandman wears a red and yellow costume and looks like a superhero and uses dream sand and his Hyposonic whistle to fight crime as well as to put people and things to sleep. The Sandman mostly watches over the nightmares of kids and will enter the dream if he feels the youngsters are in true danger. He is original portrayed as the mythical legend Sandman the watcher of dreams, but later in 1983 DC Comics and Roy Thomas tried to say the he was really Garrett Sanford a Professor at UCLA who was trapped in the Dream Dimension and even becomes a part time member of the Justice League, but this just is cheesy and shows once more that DC Comics had no respect for Jack Kirby’s creations. The Sandman is a character that never was used much by DC Comics and while he has his fans he never made an impact on the world of comics like so many other Jack Kirby creations.

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It’s a shame that DC Comics treated Jack so badly when he worked for them in the 1970’s as I truly think that given more time and freedom with them who knows what kind of great reads and characters he could have given the world. And I am pretty sure that the cool art we all seen of Kirby drawing the Horror Movie character Dr. Phibes who was played by Vincent Price would have been a pitch that he would have made for DC…and I wonder why this comic was never green lighted and I would have loved to have seen what Jack had in store for Phibes! Well enough of what could have been for Kirby, DC and Phibes as we are now at the part of this update that is about the what was and for me when I think of DC and Kirby together three series come to mind New Gods, Mister Miracle and The Sandman, with the later being what I will be covering! And one reason I choose The Sandman is that Kirby teamed with Joe Simon on the book, and for those who don’t know that pair is who created one of my favorite superheroes Captain America! I want to thank Game Swap Kettering for having this series in stock and making this update possible. I also would like to say that I have read almost this whole series before this update and this makes me exited to reread them after all these years. I want to also remind you all that I grade these comics on a star scale of 1 to 4 and am looking for how well the comics stay to the source material, it’s entertainment value and it’s art and story. So if you are ready lets travel to the land of dreams and see what DC Comics and The Sandman have in store for me.

The Sandman Kirby Comic 1

The Sandman # 1  ***
Released in 1974       Cover Price .20      DC Comics      # 1 of 6

On Dolphin Island young Jeb who has asthma and lives with his grandfather Ezra Paulsen is having a terrible dream about a man drowning in the ocean right in front of his home that is holding a strange doll. Meanwhile in another dimension The Sandman watches the dream and awakens the boy who runs outside with hid Grandpa and pull a dying sailor from the ocean who gives them the strange doll he calls the Werblink before he dies. Jeb, who is a lonely kid on the island, spends time with Werblink and the doll becomes his best friend. One night Jeb has a nightmare that Werblink is trying to kill his Grandpa and as Jeb gives chase he slips in his dream and is about to fall to his death…but The Sandman has seen enough and enters the nightmare and saves the boys life even though the creatures he keeps in glass tubes Glob and Brute tell him to let the child die! Once saved Jeb wakes up and falls back to sleep as his Grandpa grabs the doll and smashes it and then buries it on the beach. We cut briefly to the past and see that a rebuilt solider named General Electric was the man behind building the doll and he escaped a hospital and runs holding Werblink into the night. We cut back to Dolphin Island present time and a stray dog digs up the grave of Werblink and this causes Jeb and other kids around the world to have a four alarm nightmare and even an earthquake breaks loose in California and The Sandman leaves his Dream Dome in order to help the wounded using his sand to heal those in need and then rushes to Dolphin Island just in time as Jeb has found his broken doll and a group of Nazis have appeared and taken both The Sandman and Jeb hostage. While back on the mainland we find out that General Electric is in charge of the Nazis and they are collecting all the dolls he made as by linking them it will blow up the US Capital! And before they do so they beat up The Sandman and one of the Nazis finds his whistle and blows it freeing Brute and Glob who come to their friends aid, and Glob turns up the wave length of the whistle and this blows up the glass bowl on General Electrics head that holds his brain, ending the madman’s terror and with that Jeb is safe and The Sandman with Brute and Glob return to the Dream Dome.

The first issue of The Sandman was suppose to be a one shot comic, but due to good feedback from readers it would go one to have five more issues and The Sandman proved to be a minor creative hit for both Jack Kirby and DC Comics. The plot is pretty cool and has The Sandman watching the dreams and nightmares of sleeping kids via his Dream Dome and has to come to earth when the evil General Electric has a plane that will kill many and will bring back the alliance of Japan and Nazi Germany. The Sandman is a being that is humanlike in nature but has the powers to put people to sleep with his sand as well as enter your sleeping mind and cause and change the events that are taking place. His friends Brute and Glob are creatures of nightmares and while they look like monsters they are not bad. Jeb and his grandpa Ezra are also good people who live on an island and while it’s a lonely life they do have each other. The issues main bad guy is General Electric a Japanese kamikaze pilot who survived a crash and had his head and brain repaired and created by a doctor who cannot get over loosing World War II and is masterminding a way to strike at the US and once more have the Nazis rise to power. He is as scummy as they come, but do not threat cause as you see his head exploded and it appears he has truly died this time. The plot really does have that Joe Simon and Jack Kirby feel to it and during this time Kirby was very obsessed with other worlds and Simon loved telling stories of Nazis getting their butts kicked by heroes. The one odd thing about The Sandman as while he helps save Jeb from falling in a dream and helps injured firefighters he gets beat down by the Nazis and its his friends that really win the end fight as he is tied up on the floor and never even throws a punch. This is a comic I can remember reading at a young age and enjoying it, but I think now as an adult I found myself enjoying it more. The cover is awesome and eye catching as its classic Kirby stuff as is the interior art, but I will say that this is not some of Kirby’s best stuff as its pretty basic in look and lacks the Kirby detail on backgrounds. Over all the first issue of The Sandman is a fun read featuring a hero who has the powers of dreams, so with that lets see what issue two has in store for us.

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The Sandman # 2  ***
Released in 1975       Cover Price .25      DC Comics     # 2 of 6

On Dolphin Island Jeb is sound asleep in his bed when two hooded men enter his home knock out his Grandpa and kidnap him to take him to Dr. Spider a strange man who is using Jeb now to bring his nightmare creatures to life and they are under his control. While at the Dream Dome The Sandman notices that the youth of the world are not having nightmares and enters the dream stream to see what is blocking the nightmares from happing. While in this realm he tracks down the old man known as Nightmare Wizard who tells him that Dr. Spider has stolen all the creatures and is going to use them to take over the world, and he approves of this horrific plan! The Sandman is furious and heads to the real world to see if he can stop this sinister plan from fully being realized and with his hyposonic whistle and dream sand he is able to bring down a few of the creatures in front of the army, only to find himself attacked by one of the hooded goons of Dr. Spider and taken as a prisoner to their hideout with the idea of also using his powers to bring more nightmare creatures alive. While at the Dream Dome Brute and Glob watch as their friend is tied up and knocked out and Brute reveals that he has his own seceret whistle and they pair free themselves from the glass tubes and travel to reality and loosen the straps holding down Sandman and then wake him up before hiding and Sandman rushes to bring down Dr. Spider. The Hooded Men try and attack The Sandman who uses the hyposonic whistle to put them to sleep, but fails to capture Dr. Spider who uses Jeb’s nightmare creatures to attack him and if The Sandman kills one of the creatures then Jeb will die! The Sandman then uses his dream sand to put the creatures asleep, then uses his whistle to send them to the Dream Stream, he then destroys Dr. Spider’s machines and this wakes up Jeb that he send back home. In the end The Sandman is to late to stop Dr. Spider who uses a submarine to escape or does he as it blows up and this makes The Sandman wonder if he really has seen the last of this new foe.

The second issue of The Sandman is really good and still holds that classic superhero feel even though both Jack Kirby and Joe Simon had nothing to do with this issue as DC gave it to a new creative team, well I should at least say Kirby did the cover for this issue. The plot brings in a new foe called Dr. Spider who is a strange man who is just a torso that’s body in a metal frame and has mechanical arms that look like spider legs. He almost looks like a mutated melted cheese face version of Spider-Man villain Doctor Octopus and I am sure this really was a dig at Marvel Comics. A couple of things I do like about Dr. Spider is that he has a good idea of taking creatures from the nightmare world and using them to bring the world to its knees and allow him to take over, he also has hooded men who look like cultist as his henchmen and that’s also pretty cool. We also in this issue meat Nightmare Wizard a creepy old man who runs the realm of nightmares and who is very bitter about the real world. Jeb is around and is nothing more then a tool in the bad guys plans who spends almost the whole issue asleep and feeding them creatures from his nightmares, in other words he is the one that is feeding the evil doers with soldiers in order to take over the world. Plus we have zero clues if Grandpa Ezra is alive after his shock he received at the start of this issue, so Jeb could have been sent back home by The Sandman only to find the dead body of his grandpa! The Sandman once more is the hero of the day…but really does not do it on his own as once more Glob and Brute are the ones who really are the heroes as they once more free the captured hero that allows him to win the battle in the end. The Sandman really has only two weapons and tools to take on evil doers and that his Sand that puts people to sleep as well as his Hyposonic Whistle that can as well put things to sleep, send creatures back to the dream world and free his two friends that he keeps locked up in tubes. Now that I am thinking about it why in the world does The Sandman keep his two friend locked up in small tubes with him only letting them free when he needs help, seems pretty unfair and makes The Sandman come off as kind of a villain. The cover is great as its Kirby and eye catching for fans of his art as well as DC Comics from the 70’s and the interior art this time is done by Ernie Chan who was going by Ernie Chua and I will say while its not Kirby I would say that its still very good, but while the issues art and story are fun and good I still miss the Kirby and Simon touch as they where a iconic team that could make great art together. Well with that lets see what issue three has in store for us and if it holds up like the first two issues in the series.

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The Sandman # 3   **
Released in 1975       Cover Price .25     DC Comics      # 3 of 6

In Europe the people of a village storm a castle ran by The Count and his Zombie Gorillas as they want to hang him for the decades of abuse he has put them through, but he cheats them of revenge as he drinks poison just as they find him. Once “dead” his body is taken by the Zombie Gorillas to America as this was a plan by The Count to get his body to Professor Rundhaven so that he can remove it and allow it to live inside a tank that not only allows him to speak by also gives him mental powers. The Count uses his new mental powers to zap and kill Professor Rundhaven and then uses his mental link to get into the mind of the young daughter of Scientist Ralph Ervin who has been working on experiments dealing with the human brain. While The Count is in her dream The Sandman in his Dream Dome picks up on the intrusion and heads into the dream himself and foils the plot of The Count hypnotizing the young girl and causes The Count to have to retreat. As the young girl wakes up the hold on her mind is truly broken and The Count decides to send his Zombie Gorillas to the house the next night to steal the research papers and then to also steal medical equipment to free him from his glass prison. The Cops follow the Zombie Gorillas and gun them down, but not in time as they succeed and free The Count who is now a powerful floating Brain that kills the cops and then heads to the city where it drains all the power out of the power planet and The Sandman once more returns to reality and gets himself arrested before he can stop the blackout! He then uses his whistle to free Brute and Glob who once more rescues him this time from jail and The Sandman sends them back to the Dream Dome and the tracks down The Count and uses his whistle to blow up the villain ending the terror the giant brain caused New York.

The third issue as well cut Kirby from art (besides the cover) and Simon from story and delivered an ok read that has followed the same formula as the last two issues and that recycled tale is getting a little warn thin as each story has a kid in need, a new dream world entering villain, The Sandman being captured and having to have his friends save him and lastly the bad guys meet their end by explosion. The plot of this third issue has a bad guy entering the dreams of a young girls dreams in order to get her to steal the research papers of her father, and when that fails he steals them and becomes a powerful being that is exploded by The Sandman who was arrested and saved by his Nightmare friends in order to do so. The Sandman is a dream master who watches and monitors the dreams of kids that by all accounts tries his best to be a hero, but he really is just bad at it as he seems to always get captured and has to have his friends save him in order for him to take down the bad guy and take all the glory for the rescues and world saving missions. While I as a reader like The Sandman by this issue he should be better at being the Superhero he so wants to be. Brute and Glob we are miss treated and kept behind glass are the real heroes as they are the ones who seem to always get The Sandman’s fat our of the fire and even at times take down the henchmen of those who are keeping Sandman captive. The Count is a brain who grows in size and power and while he does kill a roomful of police officers, he really is not that big of a threat as he is blown up with a whistle with ease and once he becomes all powerful all he does is drain the electric power from The Bronx, New York. The Zombie Gorilla henchmen of The Count are pretty cool and they are very loyal to their master and even give their lives to protect him. Again I have to stress that DC Comics and the creative team they had behind The Sandman series really at this point needed to get past the same story format that they had followed for three issues as it really cheapened the character and really does make him look like a zero and not a hero. The few things that I did like about this issue was The Zombie Gorillas and the secret lab of Professor Rundhaven being in a old farmhouse, but to be honest this third issue is not very well done and is an average at best superhero romp. The cover done by Jack Kirby is great and the interior art by Ernie Chan is solid and good, just to bad the story by Michael Fleisher is so weak and had clearly places a bruise on the character as the series end will come just three issues later and would force them to bring back Kirby on art. Well with that lets see if Kirby’s return to art can pull this series out of the downward spiral.

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The Sandman # 4  **1/2
Released in 1975       Cover Price .25     DC Comics     # 4 of 6

An alien race is watching Earth and the dreams of Jeb as they are coming up with an idea that will allow them to take over the world and will use the dreams and nightmares of mankind in order to do so! They come up with an idea that will have them enter the Dream Stream and take Nightmare Wizard hostage as well as the creatures of that world and the Aliens would then enter people’s dreams and control or kill them. Brute and Glob are in the Dream Stream visiting family and becomes trapped in a dome dropped by the invading Aliens UFO ships, and worse the Aliens as well are able to sneak up on and take Nightmare Wizard down given them control to enter dreams! Meanwhile on Dolphin Island Jeb is showing his Grandpa how good he has gotten with his Yo-Yo before heading to bed, and its when the youngster falls asleep that The Sandman catches that the Alien starships have invaded the Dream Stream and uses his powers to wake up Jeb and then The Sandman enters the Dream Stream to stop the Alien plan that has them dropping bombs and killing many kids while they sleep! While wondering around The Sandman finds Nightmare Wizard but before he can free him the Aliens attack and knock out The Sandman and now have him as a prisoner, and this time he uses his whistle to bring Jeb to the Dream Stream and has the young boy unties the two dream masters and even uses his Yo-Yo to knock out an alien! Once free The Sandman, Jeb and Nightmare Wizard rush to the dome and the whistle is used to free the Nightmare Creatures and a clash with the aliens breaks out with The Sandman and the Creatures winning the big fight and sending the Aliens running back to space. After the fight is over The Sandman sends Jeb back to reality and best of all he is sound asleep and having good dreams.

The fourth issue of The Sandman brings back Jack Kirby on art but keeps Michael Fleisher on writing and while better then issue three it still has some of the same old same old moments that have plagued this character and the writing style of Fleisher as The Sandman once more finds himself captured and a friend having to save him and like fore the issues bad guys get into the dream world of a youngster with plans of world domination. It’s clear that Michael Fleisher just had no real ideas for The Sandman and was just retelling the same story over and over worse then a Joss Whedon and a part of me wonders if this was also the case cause Fleisher was placed on the book and he did not care for this Kirby creation so he put zero effort into the scripts. The bad guys for this issue was a race of fish looking Aliens who want to take over the world via the Dream Stream and has plans of using bombs to wound the youth of the world and come into the dream world in full force. But while they have the firepower they also had very little knowledge in combat as the Nightmare Creatures once freed make short work of them and send them running back home like chickens. Brute and Glob for once are free from their tube and are given permission to go on vacation by their “friend” The Sandman and while visiting friends and family they are captured, but once set free they fight hard. I also like at one point Brute uses the catchphrase “It’s Clobberin’ Time!” that was made famous by Fantastic Four member The Thing a character created by Kirby for Marvel. Nightmare Wizard makes an appearance as well and gets taken hostage way to easy, as you have to think he controls everything in the Dream Stream and seems to call on none of them to set him free once tied up and left in his cave home. Jeb and his Yo-Yo skills come in handy and he pops an alien in the eye with it and is able to free The Sandman, so keep that in mind a kid is the one who had to save The Sandman this time around cause like always he got himself beat up and caught. The Sandman and his whistle in the end is what breaks the dome that sets the creatures free and cause this ends the aliens packing. The Sandman really is a terrible hero and seems to walk into battles and gets himself captured every time this far! Also he finally see that Grandpa Ezra is alive after the shock from the stun gun from issue two and that he and Jeb are the only people that live on the island. The cover is great Jack Kirby stuff and his interior art is fantastic as well showing that Kirby is what’s keeping this comic series alive. I really think that in issue five they need to make The Sandman look stronger and more hero like and for the love of The King Jack not let him get captured and have to be saved by others as his track record right now is 4-0 on that! So with that lets see what The Sandman gets into for issue five.

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The Sandman # 5  ***
Released in 1975       Cover Price .25      DC Comics      # 5 of 6

Grandpa Ezra and Jeb are on a fishing boat looking to catch some big fish when they are attacked by a giant sea creature that crushes the boat and leaves them both in grave danger of not only being eaten but also drowning, in other words they need help! The Sandman watches this unfold from his Dream Dome and rushes to the world of reality in order to save them and after hurting the sea creature he gets Jeb and Ezra to shore and sadly Grandpa Ezra dies from this attack. The Sandman gives Jeb a whistle that will alert him if he needs help. Days pass and Jeb is living along on Dolphin Island when he gets a visit from his Aunt Clarice and Uncle Barnaby who get the youngster to come live with them at their farm. At the farm he meets his cousins Susie and Bruce and finds out that his relatives are lazy people and he is forced to do all the hard work and is being feed poorly even. After getting into a fight with Bruce over the whistle, Jeb is forced to chop lots of wood as his punishment and will not even get dinner until its all done! Jeb takes a nap and gets a visit from The Sandman who has him travel to the Dream Stream to help fight the Frog People who are attacking the Winged People and have kidnapped their Queen, and after saving her and returning back home Jeb wakes up to find the wood chopped and his aunt in shock as she invites him in to have dinner. As Jeb walks into the house we see that Brute and Glob chopped the wood for him while he was out with The Sandman.

The fifth issue of The Sandman is a really solid issue with a good plot that mostly focuses on Jeb and his life after loosing his Grandpa to a Sea Creature and his journey of leaving Dolphin Island and living on the mainland with his Aunt and Uncle who treat him oddly. Jeb does really well dealing with all the major changes in his life and while he misses his Grandpa he makes do with his situation. The Sandman who tries his best to save both Jeb and Ezra from the attack at sea is also the one who has to deliver the bad news to Jeb that his grandfather has died, then gives him a whistle before leaving a young boy alone on an island right after his only guardian has died…I will say it again The Sandman is not good at being a superhero! But I do have to give him credit this time around as he at least does not find himself being taken prisoner and he does but some heads with his fists this time around and not his sand or whistle. And this time around Brute and Glob take a back seat and while they help in the end they are not the heroes of saving the day like they normally are. The Frog Men are the bad guys but they are defeated easily once The Sandman and Jeb find their hidden kingdom. The Aunt, Uncle and Cousins of Jeb are all terrible people who use the young lad to do all the work around the farm and while they eat lamb chops they feed him oatmeal, showing that they do not care if he is blood as they just want someone to work hard and get the chores done. And I have to say that I think writer Michael Fleisher did a great job on this issue and it feels like a true classic superhero comic story even if the parts with the death of Grandpa Ezra are awkward and weird and the emotions of all seem very off. The cover and interior art by Jack Kirby is amazing and outstanding like always and some of his art for The Frog Men is fantastic and for some reason reminded me of Super Mario Bros. 2 for the NES. Over all this is a great issue in the series and is a great lead up for the six and final issue that we will be taking a look at right now.

The Sandman Kirby Comic 6

The Sandman # 6  ***
Released in 1976       Cover Price .25     DC Comics      # 6 of 6

The Sandman is watching the dream monitors and notices that Jeb is having a bad nightmare about drowning and worse it seems as if this nightmare is being forced and is coming from an unknown source. The Sandman goes into the Dream Stream to save his young friend but soon finds out that the youngster is not real and is a bomb that blows up knocking him out, we then see the hooded henchmen of Dr. Spider coming for our hero and taking him away. Moments later an android version of The Sandman arrives at the Dream Dome and he tricks Glob and Brute into following him back to Dr. Spider’s ship, but Brute holds back for a moment and poor Glob is zapped and held prisoner. Dr. Spider alerts the real Sandman that he plans on taking over America and his sea ship that can go from the dream world to reality is the key to doing so as is the Hyposonic whistle that now is in the hands of Spider. Meanwhile back at the farm Jeb is once more being mistreated by his family and is forced to do all the chores at the farm while they go to a carnival, and that night Bruce sneaks in and steals the whistle and gives it a blow and Brute shows up and delivers some creepy crawlers to the brat cousin and then wakes up Jeb and says that they need to get ready as he thinks that The Sandman is in danger. While back on the ship Dr. Spider is set into a rage over The President and the News making a joke of his threat to use a magic whistle to bring down Washington, and at midnight now he plans on using the whistle to teach the Government a lesson! The Sandman uses all his strength and breaks free and takes out a few henchman before being zapped by a laser gun and then tied up and thrown into the ocean as Dr. Spider has no use for him. Meanwhile Jeb and Brute arrives at the base of Dr. Spider and are not sure what they are going to be up against, and soon find themselves the prisoner of Dr. Spider and are put in a cell with Glob and all will be forced to watch the destruction of the US Capital. The Sandman escapes his watery death and even punches a shark in the face to do so and then arrives at the base and frees his friends and the heroes take out all his henchmen but are too late to stop Dr. Spider from escaping on a rocket. In the end The Sandman, Brute and Glob return to the Dream Dome as Jeb is returned to the farm.

The final issue of The Sandman is a good issue but an odd ending for the series as I think that the sixth issue was not originally meant to be the final in the series as we have no real closure for any of the characters. And I think once more writer Michael Fleisher did a good job on the story for this issue as he brought back the sinister Dr. Spider who this time wants to take over America and is going to use the magical Hyposonic Whistle to do so! The Sandman in this issue shows more superhero tendencies than ever before as he not only saves the day he even gets himself out of danger twice and does not have to have his friends to be the true heroes of the day. The Sandman also shows that he is very skilled with his fists as he punches his way through henchmen and even shows that he is strong as he breaks a crystal cage and tosses people around like ragdolls. While most of this series The Sandman has been a dud of a hero, by this final issue he shows that he was becoming more and more one. Brute and Glob are nightmare creatures who are The Sandman’s friends and allies and while they spend most of their lives in glass tubes, when needed, they always come through and do the right thing to save lives. Jeb whose life is bad now that he has to live with his Aunt is also more then just a youth having nightmares by the end of the series as a few times he helps save the day and adds elements to the story, in fact by the end of the series its clear he is part of the team. The sinister Dr. Spider is as crazy as ever and wants so bad to become a ruler of something, but seems to never be able to get the chance, he is also the only villain to be used twice and is clearly the main baddy of the series. While Kirby draws him different then Ernie Chan I still think Dr. Spider looks life a mound of melted cheese in a metal body. While I think that The Sandman is a comic series that suffered from changing creative teams, a writer who seemed disinterested in the character at the start, DC Comics lack of respect for the creator and character and a handful of other issues, I for one have always found it to be a fun and simple read and while I think many readers enjoyed The Sandman I also thank that by the mid 70’s this type of superhero was dated and readers had moved based the simple nature of good vs. evil. The cover for this final issue is ok and the least impressive of the series, but does do a good job of building up the danger aspect of what The Sandman had to face. The interior art by Jack Kirby was great and he was also inked by Wally Wood and this was a great combo and these two are amazing artists and icons of classic comics. To sum it all up I would say that The Sandman is not a comic series for everyone and while super flawed its simple plots and classic style heroes are enjoyable and worth checking out if you like Kirby and those style of heroes in comics. Check out the artwork below as I think it showcases the work of Kirby as well as captures the over all vibe of this series.

The Sandman Kirby Comic Art 1

Reading The Sandman again after all these years I can say that I really did enjoy his adventures and the character was very interesting even if DC Comics truly didn’t believe in him. Jack Kirby really was a man with many ideas and The Sandman was one of them that I feel should have been bigger then what it was, and again I say the same thing about Satan’s Six. Also imagine if DC Comics, Jack Kirby and the other creators that helped on The Sandman explored the Nightmare World better and think of the creatures, monsters and madmen that could have made up that world. Well let’s not harp too much on DC Comics always dropping the ball with a cool character and let’s talk about what I have in store for you readers for the next for this 10 Year Celebration and that a new update theme that I will be calling “R.I.W Wrestling Legends.” I will be talking about the wrestler Missing Link! So I hope you are all looking forward to that one as this will be an update series that will be around for a long time just like my Horror Host Icon updates! So until next time read a Jack Kirby comic or ten, watch a movie or two and as always support your local Horror Host. See you all next update at the Rotten Ink Arena as Missing Link is in the main event!

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Star Trek V: What Does God Need With A Starship?

Welcome back to Rotten Ink and one of the updates that I selected to be part of this 10 year celebration of course has to be another of the Star Trek films as they have always been some of my favorite sci-fi flicks ever made. Rotten Ink and Star Trek go hand in hand as the show and movies are truly parts of my past, and I am sure as Star Trek continues on it will as well be apart of my future. As you long time readers know, I have been reviewing all the comic adaptations of Star Trek films that feature the original cast (you know the ones with Captain Kirk and Spock) and this year we have landed on Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, a film in the series that was met with mixed reviews from critics and fans alike, but one I am very much looking forward to covering as I have always enjoyed it! So with that, let’s take a look at Star Trek V as well as the DC Comics adaptation as its time to Boldly Go Where Many Comic Readers Have Gone Before and that’s on comic adventures with the crew of the Enterprise.

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Let’s start off by talking about the film itself. I will be taking the film’s plot write up from our pals at IMDB and after I will be writing about the film’s production as well as my thoughts on the film. So if you are ready, let’s take trip with the Enterprise Crew to a final frontier in space.

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Star Trek V: Final Frontier (1989)

“When the newly-christened starship Enterprise’s shakedown cruise goes poorly, Captain Kirk and crew put her into Spacedock for repairs. But an urgent mission interrupts their Earth-bound shore leave. A renegade Vulcan named Sybok has taken three ambassadors hostage on Nimbus III, the Planet of Galactic Peace. This event also attracts the attention of a Klingon captain who wants to make a name for himself and sets out to pursue the Enterprise. Sybok’s ragtag army captures the Enterprise and takes her on a journey to the center of the galaxy in search of the Supreme Being.”

William Shatner was finally given the opportunity to direct one of the films in the Star Trek series with this fifth film that he also helped with the story on, a story that he had been working on even before he was offered the director’s chair. Shatner’s original idea was about a false God that turns into Satan that tries to take the crew of the Enterprise to Hell…what a strange and interesting idea that also seems like it would have been an issue of the Marvel Comics series. Producer Harve Bennett was ready to walk away from the Star Trek film series after three films produced and the feuding he had with Leonard Nimoy, but after a meeting Shatner got him back on board. Then some elements of Shatner’s story needed to be changed due to the concern that the subject matter of God and Satan might not sit well with moviegoers. They changed the depiction of God into an alien being that was faking being God in order gain power and then brought on David Loughery to write the screenplay. This idea and script did not sit well with Gene Roddenberry, the creator of Star Trek, and the screenplay was put on hold when Loughery was part of the Writers Guild Of America strike, holding up the film’s production. When he finally got back to work and finished it, Shatner was displeased with many of the writer’s changes to his idea and things once more had to be worked out when Nimoy and Kelley had concerns with the script. Once the script was green lit by Paramount, they started the design, production and casting processes and started to film in October 1988. The filming of the fifth film in the series was very stressful as delays, strikes and looming deadlines made it stressful for all involved, but with luck and a hard working crew, William Shatner was able to get the film wrapped and Paramount as well as fans were very pleased to hear that the film was wrapped and would be released in theaters very soon. When the film was edited, composer Jerry Goldsmith was brought in and he made an amazing score that for many is one of the highlights of the film series with tracks like “The Mountain” being a must listen in this blogger’s opinion. The film was released in theaters on June 9, 1989 and was meet with poor reviews from critics who thought it was the weakest in the series, but movie goers seemed to favor it more as with them it was meet with mixed reviews. The film brought in $52,210,049.00 for Paramount at the American box office and ranked # 25 for the year beating out such films as Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventures, The Karate Kid Part III, License To Kill, All Dogs Go To Heaven, A Nightmare On Elm Street Part 5, No Holds Barred and Friday The 13th Part 8 to name a few. While Star Trek V might not be the biggest blockbuster in the series, I for one always enjoyed it and think it’s way underrated and offers some fun and adventures moments.

Star Trek V: The Final Frontier is a film that I first saw on VHS when my parents rented it from the video store and we had a family movie night watching it. I remember that we had microwave popcorn, and me and my brother were drinking Kool-Aid. I remember enjoying and loving the film as the bonding between Captain Kirk, Spock and Dr. McCoy around the campfire singing songs, drinking whiskey and eating beans was awesome and something that captured the three characters’ friendship so perfect. I liked the idea of them searching for God all because of a crazed Vulcan who is a cult leader by all accounts taking them hostage and brainwashing them to do so. Over the years I have seen the film many times and each time I have enjoyed it, and no joke this film has a line that I say all the time around the house to Juliet and I will get to that a little later. I also remember that my Uncle Thurman loved Star Trek V and can remember talking to him about the film while at my grandparents’ house. While Star Trek V is not my favorite film in the series, it’s not one I dislike and find it to be very charming, It’s one you should watch for the first time or watch again with a clear mind and enjoy it for the fun ride it is. I guess before we get off this part of the review I should also point out some things I didn’t like about the film with the biggest for me being the fact that the film’s semi villain is able to use his powers to scramble the minds of McCoy and the Enterprise Crew with only Kirk and Spock being strong enough to fight it off, and damn it, McCoy should have been able to as well as Sulu! To sum it up, Star Trek V is a great sequel and a fun film that I have enjoyed since I was a kid.

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Star Trek V: The Final Frontier has one of the greatest lines in Trek history and one that, as I said, I use around the house and even at times while hanging out with friends. Now to set up this line I need to explain the scene as it has Captain Kirk, Spock, Bones McCoy and Vulcan cultist Sybok breaking through the barrier and beaming down to Sha Ka Ree, the planet that is supposed to house God, well to Sybok and his followers at least. Once there they meet The Creator who demands they bring the Enterprise closer so that he can leave the planet and spread his word among the galaxies. And upon hearing that The Creator wants them to bring down the Enterprise…Kirk asks the best question ever asked in a Star Trek film “What does God need with a starship?”! Hands down, this is an amazing line! Say that phrase out loud but do it in your best William Shatner impersonation and stress the word God…Shatner should have won an Oscar for that performance as it really is something I say so much in my life as I find it to be fitting for many of life’s questions.

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Like all Star Trek films that came before it as well as after, The Final Frontier had its fare share of merchandise for fans to collect and add to their Trek collections. The film had magazines, novels, home media releases, soundtrack, toys, posters, shirts, hats, buttons, comic book, jackets, computer games, trading cards and so much more! Over the years I have owned many items based on Star Trek V like the film on VHS and DVD, the soundtrack on CD, the novel and comic as well as at one time the trading cards. So if you are a Trekkie and love Part 5, the world has many of cool items for you to own.

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Did you old school gamers know that a video game for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) based on Star Trek V: The Final Frontier was being made by Bandai that was to release around the same time as the film? Did you know that it was cancelled due to the game not playing well and losing track of much of the film’s concept? Did you know that in 2006 a ROM of the game was released that featured four of the stages? Did you know that the game has also made it way to the grey market and is now on a cart that you can play on your NES? Well now you do, and I am happy to say that I have a cart version of this game and man is it a hard one with unforgiving controls and gameplay. The game is a side scrolling adventure game as well as a space shooter and it’s a shame that the game was never finished as who knows what the level that had you fight The Creator would have been, I am guessing the Enterprise firing at a floating head that spit fireballs. The game is a really fun play for fans of classic NES games, as well as Star Trek fans and if you have a ROM on your computer or have a trusty favorite cart maker, make sure to give this unfinished game a try.

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Star Trek V: The Final Frontier is a super fun film that spawned some great merchandise as well as a fun half finished game for the NES, and we are now at the time of reading and reviewing the comic. I would like to thank Mavericks Cards And Comics for having the comic in stock and would also like to remind you readers that I grade these comics on a star scale of 1 to 4 and am looking for how well the comics stay to the source material, its entertainment value and its art and story. So if you are ready, let’s boldly go where no comic reader has gone before!

Star Trek V Comic 1

Star Trek V: Final Frontier  ***
Released in 1989     Cover Price $2.00      DC Comics     #1 of 1

On the planet of Nimbus III the Vulcan Sybok is on a quest to get a starship in order to find the planet Sha Ka Ree and is gathering the lost souls of the planet to help him do so by coming up with a plan that will make sure one will come. Meanwhile at Yosemite National Park on shore leave Captain Kirk, Spock and McCoy are having a camping trip and Kirk has decided to climb a mountain. While climbing Spock with rocket boots comes to speak to Kirk and this causes him to lose his grip and fall, and if not for Spock and his boots, he would have crashed to the earth below. Back on Nimbus III the ambassadors (a Klingon, Terran and Romulan) of the planet are taken prisoner by Sybok and his makeshift army, and Starfleet calls the Enterprise to be the peacemakers to help them. Also hearing of the hostage situation is Klingon Captain Klaa and he and his crew are more hyped for the idea of fighting a starship than helping. Once at Nimbus III, they try and trick Sybok when Chekov acts as the Captain and speaks to him about terms of releasing them while Kirk leads Spock, Spock, McCoy, Sulu, Uhura and a few other crewmembers on a rescue mission on the ground. But Kirk and crew soon find that this was a set up to get their starship and Sybok has even gotten to the ambassadors who believe in his journey to find Sha Ka Ree. Now the Enterprise is in the hands of a religious madman who is Spock’s brother and also Captain Klaa is on the attack! Kirk, Spock and McCoy are thrown in a cell as Sybok uses his mind powers to get the rest of the Enterprise crew under his spell…all but Scotty who breaks them out of the cell. Kirk makes it to his room and sends a call for help! Sybok catches them and tells them of his want to find Sha Ka Ree and then uses his mind control powers on McCoy and Spock by showing them past pains and freeing them from it. Kirk refuses to get his pain taken away, and then they hit the zone that will lead them to the unknown planet of Sha Ka Ree. As Sybok rushes back to the bridge, Spock and McCoy break the hold and stay with Kirk who has been ordered to stay in his room, that is until Kirk is called back up the bridge as Sybok says the ship needs its captain. Then Kirk, Spock, McCoy and Sybok get into a shuttle and land on the planet to meet “God”, and when they land, they meet a powerful being that alerts them that he needs the starship to carry his wisdom away from the planet and the zone. When questioned why God needs the help of a ship, the being attacks Kirk and Spock! And the being shows its true self at being an evil being and Sybok attacks the being just as the Enterprise gets orders to blast it with phasers! As Kirk, Spock and McCoy run to the shuttle, the being now as a rock creature goes on the attack and Scotty is able to beam up McCoy and Spock, but before he can get Kirk, the Enterprise is attacked by Captain Klaa making Kirk stand alone against the rock creature. That is until Kirk is beamed aboard the Klingon ship thanks to the Klingon Ambassador who orders Klaa to save Kirk from that false god and that terrible planet. Once out of the zone and back on shore leave Kirk, Spock and McCoy finish their camping trip.

This DC Comic adaptation of Star Trek V is a great read and captures the adventure and humor of the film really well and even showcases the power of the Fake God even more by allowing him to become a massive rock creature who wants to smash Kirk into the ground! The plot is simple: Spock’s brother hijacks the Enterprise to find a planet that is said to hold the secrets of God only to find an evil being and throw in a young Klingon Captain who wants to make a name for himself by killing Kirk and you have this plot in a nutshell. Captain Kirk goes from a relaxing camping trip to a rescue mission to being a prisoner on his own ship to fighting a fake God to going back on vacation, so as you can see, he had a very busy couple of days! The thing about Captain Kirk is that he is fearless as well as loyal to his ship and crew and lives for his Starfleet command. Kirk really is my favorite Captain in any Star Trek series as he is a rebel, a ladies man, and a great strategist when it comes to battles with the likes of Klingons. Spock in this issue is trying to learn human camping stories and snacks and shows that while he cares about his brother, he is very much loyal to his friends. McCoy as well cares about his friends and we see that he holds lots of pain when he could not help his father with an illness that took his life and a cure was just around the corner. I have to say this again, nothing in the world of science fiction can beat the friendship and bond of Captain Kirk, Dr. McCoy and Spock as they are the perfect trio of friends in any kind of fiction. The False God is pure evil and has been placed in the zone with a force field around it to keep it from infecting the rest of the galaxy with its evil ways, it’s violent and can take the appearance of anyone or thing and is best left on that planet. The Klingon Captain Klaa and his crew are young and crave war and want so badly to make a name for themselves in the history books and think that by killing Captain Kirk they can do so, and they come close until a high ranking Klingon forces them to help Kirk! Poor Sybok, who is the brother of Spock, is not a bad Vulcan at all and thinks that emotions are more important than logic and can even take peoples pain away and mind control them into happiness. All he really wants to do is find Sha Ka Ree, a planet he thinks God lives so all living things can find the answer to life and happiness, but instead he finds a fake and gives his life to try and help Spock, McCoy and Kirk to escape the cursed planet. The best part of Sybok is that he has a strange version of the Vulcan Mind Meld that allows him to fill a being with pure joy and take away their pain. I should also say that Sybok is Spock’s half brother as they share the same father. The comic does a great job of keeping the plot going and taking elements of the film that was cut from the film script like the Rock Creature. The cover for this comic is well done and super eye catching for fans of Star Trek and the interior art by James W. Fry and Arne Starr and is well done and captures the looks of the actors pretty well. If you are a fan of Star Trek V like I am I would say make sure to give this comic a read as I think you will enjoy it as much as I did. Check out the artwork below to see they style used in this comic adaptation.

Star Trek V Comic Art 1Star Trek V Comic Art 2Star Trek V Comic Art 3

Star Trek had to have a place on Rotten Ink’s 10 Year Anniversary year as they really are some of my favorite sci-fi films and growing up Star Trek was a big part of my childhood in both TV shows, movies and toys. And while Star Trek V is not one of the most well loved films staring the original cast by Trekkies, it is one that I have always been a fan of. And after reading this update I hope you give this film a watch and sit back and enjoy the silly ride from the mind of William Shatner. For my next update, I am staying in the world of sci-fi but the next topic has a touch of Greek myth and fantasy to it and I am talking about the 1981 classic film Clash Of The Titans! So until next time, read a Star Trek comic or three, watch a Star Trek film or two and as always support your local Horror Host. Join me next time as Rotten Ink unleashes the Kraken!

Clash Of The Titans Preview Logo

Matt Goes To The Movies 2021

Matt Goes To The Movies 2021 Logo

Welcome everyone to Rotten Ink, my little fun and goofy slice of the world-wide-web. This year 2022 is something very special for my blog as it turns 10 years old! It’s crazy to think that I have been covering comic books, horror hosts, movies, video games, toys and indie films for this long now as it does not seem that long at all to me, but I guess time does fly when you are doing something you love. This year I am going to celebrate in style as I am going to cover all types of things I love, from comics based on toys and cartoons all the way to horror hosts and wrestlers that I consider the best of the best! So 2022 will be a fun year for sure as I get to chat about so many things, and who knows, maybe I will even have a guest writer or two…maybe! But now let’s focus on why we are here at the Rotten Ink Theater as we are here to talk about movies that were shown in my local theaters that I was lucky enough to see on the big silver screen! The coronavirus pandemic was still in full effect so the films coming out were scarce for a while, but it did allow way more indie films to have their time to shine. And let’s not also forget the AT&T and Warner Brothers goofy idea of same day streaming.  I for one went to the theater to see the films I wanted as that was the way they are meant to be seen. I want to thank Cinemark Theaters and Englewood Cinema for being open during these times and help delivering amazing films on the big screen and also allowing private screenings that my friends and I enjoyed throughout the year. And for me, no matter what anyone says, nothing beats seeing films at the movie theaters; streaming just does not pack a punch for me. So with that, let’s grab some popcorn and find our seats as it’s time to talk about the movies of 2021 and rank them by genre, and man horror this year was on point as you will see later in the update. One note: all of the box office figures for the movies are as of the date of this update, January 2, 2021.

Matt Goes To The Movies 2021 Cinemark Logo

Let’s start with Comedy.  In 2021 I didn’t see many of them, but the ones I did were animated and based on classic characters, so with that let me share with you the two films that tickled my funny bone and kept me laughing at the cinema.

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# 2

Tom and Jerry 2021 Poster

Kayla Forester is a young woman who is down and out when it comes to holding onto a job, and after sneaking her way into it, she finds herself working for the Royal Gate Hotel in New York during the wedding of a rich couple whose event is getting bigger and bigger by the minute. But things do not go smoothly for her when Tom and Jerry bring their fighting to the hotel and causes all kinds of chaos and issues that fall into Kayla’s lap! Can she get these two one the same page, can she guard her secret of having a fake resume and most importantly can she save the wedding from all this madness? This is a fun family film filled with silly slapstick comedy moments that brings the classic cartoon characters to a new generation of moviegoers. Plus it’s well casted with one of my favorite actresses Chloe Grace Moretz playing the part of Kayla Forester and other cast members include Michael Pena, Ken Jeong, Pallavi Sharda, Rob Delaney and Colin Jost. The humor is super silly and is a mix of modern cellphone emoji jokes as well as some dated 90’s gags making it fun for all ages. The only thing I would say that the film could have been a little shorter and that would have made the film flow at a better pace. The film did well at the US Box Office for Warner Brothers bringing in $46,041,123.00 on a budget of $79 million. This is worth watching if you enjoy Tom and Jerry and you would like to see them in modern time New York.

# 1

Addams Family 2 (2021) Poster

Wednesday Addams is having a hard time as she cannot relate to normal people and even her own family, and after a disappointing science fair and skipping family dinners several times Gomez Addams decides that a family vacation is needed to travel to some of Americas most gruesome places like Salam and Sleepy Hollow. But the family gets sidetracked when scientist Cyrus Strange tries to claim he is really Wednesday’s father and that she was switched at birth.  After a DNA test proves this true, she leaves her old family behind to be with her “real” family, and it’s up to The Addams Family to get to the truth and bring Wednesday back home were she belongs, and of course all types of kooky things happen along the way. This was a super fun horror themed kids film that was just as enjoyable as the first film.  It is well casted with names like Oscar Isaac, Chloe Grace Moretz, Charlize Theron, Bette Midler, Snoop Dogg and Bill Hader all lending their voices to the main cast. The film did okay for MGM at the Box Office given that they also did VOD day of release as well bringing in $56,489,153 on an unknown budget. This one is worth seeing and worth owning on home media if you are an Addams Family fan like myself.

So as you can see, The Addams Family took the top spot in comedy.  Now let’s jump into the action genre and see what high explosions I saw on the silver screen.

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# 4

F9 (2021) Poster

Dom Toretto and his fast car driving team once more find themselves helping the government in order to find a device that when used with other parts will bring on a massive nuclear assault on the whole world, and worse Jakob Toretto, his own brother, is working for the bad side.  Now it’s a race around the world and even space in order to save the world from this new threat, and Dom even has to get help from all of his “family” in order to pull this one off. This is a fun goofy over the top action film that by no means takes itself seriously, and because of that, it’s super fun and by all means cheesy. The film has the likes of Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriguez, John Cena, Tyrese Gibson and Charlize Theron on cast. The film did well for Universal at the American Box Office bringing in $173,005,945.00 on a budget of $200 million and worldwide it did fantastic. If you are a fan of the Fast And The Furious series, this one is defiantly worth checking out.

# 3

The Marksman (2021) Poster

Jim Hanson is a former Marine who lives in Texas right at the border.  He has lost his wife to cancer and the bank is threatening to take his ranch away due to missed payments. While driving his property, he stumbles on Rosa and her son Miguel who are on the run from a Mexican drug cartel due to a family member stealing money from them, and when Rosa dies from a gunshot wound Jim promises her that he will get her son to family in Chicago.  All the while, the cartel is after them as is Jim’s step daughter who works for the border patrol and needs to take the child back. The film is a drama action movie that has a 68 year old Liam Neeson in the role of Jim Hanson, and he does a great job at playing the moody war hero. Also in the cast is Katheryn Winnick, Teresa Ruiz, Juan Pablo Rada and Jocob Perez. The film plays off the current hot topic of border security and as well as that no matter how defeated you feel in life, someone can come into your life and change that around. The film did okay for Open Road Films at the USA Box Office during the Virus Crisis bringing in $15,566,093.00 on a budget of $23 million. This was a fun way to kick off the 2021 movie going experience and is one that I might watch again someday.

# 2

nobody poster

Hutch Mansell is a family man who is living a boring life with a wife and two kids he loves but his job is lacking something. His life changes when a pair of robbers breaks into his home and steals a little money as well as his daughter’s cat bracelet, and then his past life comes speeding back into his present.  Hutch was once a government solider who took care of “problems” and after tracking down the robbers and beating up a group of punks on a bus, Hutch has got a price on his head placed their by a very powerful Russian and now he must get his family to safety and teach these criminals that they have messed with the wrong man. Nobody is a super fun film that was made by the same creative team that did the John Wick film series, and this one feels right at home in that universe. The film is well casted with Bob Odenkirk playing Hutch being spot on as he comes off as both a pushover family man as well as a kickass government trained skilled killer. Other names in the cast are Christopher Lloyd, RZA, Connie Nielsen and Aleksey Serebryakov. The film is filled with big action moments and is pretty violent and is a must watch for fans of revenge films. The film did pretty well for Universal at the US Box Office during the still on going virus crisis bringing in $27,268,035.00 on a budget of $16 million, showing that this John Wick universe film had some fans and that this is one that you should see.

# 1

no time to die poster

James Bond is living the retired life but does have some sins from his past haunting him including walking away from his true love, but when a new threat to the whole world emerges Bond is forced out of retirement and must team with the new 007 as well as once more see the woman he had left behind heartbroken in order to stop this new threat and save the world once again. This was a great James Bond adventure that has very high stacks and is unlike the others in this series.  Plus this is extra special as it’s Daniel Craig’s final time playing the iconic role, and its so well casted with names like Lea Seydoux, Rami Malek, Lashana Lynch and Ben Whishaw to name a few making up much of the main cast. The film is filled with drama, action and even suspense and is one of the better Bond films I have seen, and that is why it locked the # 1 spot in the action film section I saw in the theater! The film did well for MGM at the American box office and brought in $160,772,007 on a budget of $250 million dollars. If you are Bond fan, make sure to check this one out as it packs a very impactful ending that will pull at your heartstrings.

As you can see, 2021 had some great action films that made it to the theater and did a great job of entertaining my friends and I! Our next section is all about the sci-fi and fantasy films that did the same for us, so let’s chat about those.

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# 5

chaos walking Poster

The New World is a planet where men cannot hide their inner thoughts.  They can be heard by anyone with what they called the noise. Todd Hewitt is a young man who lives in Prentisstown, where all the woman have been killed, and works at a beet farm, but his life changes when a ship from Earth crashes and the only survivor is Viola, a beautiful woman who once discovered has the Mayor David and his men hunting her down like a wild animal as they think if she contacts another ship, the simple life they have will be ruined…or is it that their sinister secret will be exposed!? Now it’s up to Todd to control his thoughts and help Viola find a radio in order to save herself as well as start a new life. This is a fun sci-fi film filled with some alien creatures as well as interesting characters that is well cast with Tom Holland, Daisy Ridley, David Oyelowo and Mads Mikkelsen being in the lead roles. The film did not do great for Lionsgate at the American Box Office bringing in $13,287,908.00 on a budget of $100 million. This is a very interesting sci-fi film that you should check out on home media.

# 4

Green Knight (2021) Poster

Gawain is the nephew of King Arthur and during a feast at the round table, the mythical Green Knight appears and issues a challenge that he will allow any brave knight to strike him, but one year later the one who deals the blow must travel to the Green Chapel and will receive that same blow.  Gawain takes the challenge and shows off by cutting the head off of the Green Knight who picks up his head and rides off laughing. When the year is up, Gawain goes on a quest to the Green Chapel and along the journey comes across thieves, strangers, ghosts, giants and a talking fox before finally meeting his fate at the hands of the Green Knight. This is the classic round table story turned to film and is an epic tale and brings together elements of fantasy and even a dash of horror. The Green Knight looks very cool and is played by Ralph Ineson and the rest of the cast includes Dev Patel, Alicia Vikander, Sean Harris, Joel Edgerton. The film did okay for A24 at the American Box Office during the still lingering virus crisis bringing in $17,173,321.00 on a budget of $15million. Over all this is a slow burn fantasy film that will surely please fans of classic tales of King Arthur’s world and round table adventures.

# 3

Morta Kombat 2021 Poster

Many people on Earth have been born with a Dragon birthmark and this is not by chance as they have been selected to be a fighter in “Mortal Kombat,” a tournament held by realms in order to show dominance as well as used to conquer other worlds. Earth’s champion is Radian and his fighters have been finding themselves being killed off before the tournament as Shang Tsung has sent his fighters Sub Zero, Goro, Mileena, Nitara, Reiko and Kabal to stack the odds in their realm’s favor. But they are not ready when Cole Young as well as Earth’s other fighters Sonya Blade, Kano, Jax, Liu Kang and Kung Lao are ready to fight for the world and take the war back to them. And when Scorpion joins the fight, the big fights start way before the Mortal Kombat tournament. What will be the fate of Earth, who will live and who will die…watch this fantasy video game martial arts film to find out. This is a really fun film and the best Mortal Kombat film to date as the film captures the brutal nature of the game series it’s based on and the effects are well done as well. My favorite character in the film had to be Sub Zero as he is cold blooded (pun intended) and the history between he and Scorpion is well done. The film did okay for Warner Brothers at the US Box Office during the lingering pandemic and their foolish HBO Max day of release nonsense and brought in $42,201,013.00 on a budget of $55 million. If you like the game and like martial arts films filled with crazy characters, then you should check this one out.

# 2

Dune (2021) Poster

Duke Leto and his family consort Jessica and son Paul have been assigned to planet Arrakis to harvest Spice.  The planet was previously under the rule of Baron Vladimir Harkonnen who is not happy that he and his soldiers have been pulled out due to the choice of the Emperor. But when Leto arrives, he finds that the odds have been staked against him to fail as the machines he was left to harvest the Spice aare broken down, the area is surrounded by the massive Sand Worms and the area is also the home of the Fremen, the natives of the planet who are not happy that outsiders are harvesting their land and are at war with them. Paul meanwhile seems to have a gift and is having visions and has to protect his mom when his family and kingdom are attacked by Baron Harkonnen, and his father Leto is killed and all his friends who are warriors are assumed to be dead. Paul and his mom must wander around the desert and avoid the Sand Worms as well as try and get shelter from the Fremen. And man this is a very brief write up as this film has more layers of plot than what I can squeeze in here! This was a film I was not looking forward to, but after seeing it, I loved it and that is why it’s my # 2 film in this category. The film looks fantastic and the effects are top notch and is well casted with names like Oscar Isaac, Stellan Skarsgard, Zendaya, Josh Brolin, Timothee Chalamet, Jason Momoa, Dave Bautista and Rebecca Ferguson making up the cast. The film did well for Warner Brothers at the American Box Office given that they again did a streaming day of release bringing in $106,985,276 on a budget of $165 million. It’s a really great sci-fi film that in my opinion is leaps and bounds better than the 1984 version.

# 1

Ghostbusters Afterlife Poster

Phoebe Spengler is the granddaughter of original Ghostbusters member Egon Spengler, and she has inherited his love for science.  But she has never knew him due to him leaving his family behind to live in a farmhouse in a very small town many years back. When Phoebe and her mother and brother have to move into Egon’s old rundown farmhouse after his death, she uncovers that the town is a hot spot for the second coming of Gozer! With the help of her grandfather’s spirit, she along with her brother Finn, her new friend Podcast and teenage waitress Lucky find the tools to bust ghosts and have to save the town from the upcoming apocalypse.  Along the way, they get the help of Ray Stantz, Peter Venkman and Winston Zeddemore in order to save the world and let everyone know who to call when paranormal activity enters your home. This fourth film in the Ghostbusters series is a great horror comedy film that does a great job of mixing the two genres as well as capturing that magic that makes the Ghostbuster films so special. And besides bringing in the classic cast Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Ernie Hudson, Annie Potts and Sigourney Weaver the new cast of McKenna Grace, Finn Wolfhard, Carrie Coon. Paul Rudd and all the others fit right in with Grace stealing the film. The film also does a great job of introducing new ghosts as well as showcasing some familiar ones as well. The film did well for Sony at the American box office bringing in $122,388,000 on a budget of $75 million. This is a fun film, and like before, don’t listen to online critics and make up you own mind as this film was great, and yes I will be buying it when it’s released on home media.

Lots of great fantasy and sci-fi films was released in the theaters in 2021, and really Dune was a big surprise for me as I was not looking forward to it and after watching it I found it at my # 2 spot! With that, let’s see what superheroes brought to the silver screen in 2021.

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# 6

Eternals (2021) Poster

The Eternals are a race of immortals sent from The Celestial Arishem to Earth to act as protectors and to stop a race of creatures called Deviants. The Eternals are leader Ajak along with Ikaris, Sersi, Kingo, Thena, Phastos, Makkari, Druig, Gilgamesh and Sprite, and each have amazing powers that will help mankind move along. When they think that their mission is done, they disband with many of them going their own ways, but when the Deviants return and their one time leader Ajak is found dead, they must come back together and save mankind again…but is that their real mission as they end up digging deeper and finding the truth about Arishem as well as their true origin. This was a way better then I expected as I was never a big fan of the comic series. The film was well cast with names like Salma Hayek, Angelina Jolie, Richard Madden, Gemma Chan and Kit Harington and had a few surprise cameos from characters that will be appearing in future Marvel Universe films and shows. The film has done well for Disney at the American box office bringing in $164,611,651 on a budget of $200 million. While not the best superhero film I have ever seen, it sure as hell was an entertaining one that really surprised me.

# 5

black widow (2021) Poster

The Black Widow meets up with her “sister” Yelena Belova who is on the run as she has broken the hold of Dreykov, the man who has warped the minds of many young woman and turned them into killers for hire. Yelena has an antidote for this mind control and this has marked her for death. As Widow and Yelena go and get the help of The Red Guardian who once acted as their father, they find out that the ultimate fighter known as Taskmaster has been sent to kill them both. And now Black Widow along with her “family” must comeback together and fight in order to finally bring down Dreykov and his evil empire that has enslaved and tormented women into killers for decades. This superhero film is filled with action as well as some twists and turns and explores the backstory of Black Widow and allows you to peek into her youth that was filled with so much bad and explains her mental stress as an adult about the actions of her past. Scarlett Johansson is fantastic as always as Black Widow.  I am a big fan of Florence Pugh, and it was great to see her as Yelena Belova, who, by the end of this film is clearly going to be the new Black Widow. It was also great to see Rachel Weisz, William Hurt and David Harbour in big roles as they all did great in their parts. This film did pretty well for Disney at the US box office bringing in $183,651,655.00 on a budget of $200 million. It’s worth watching, and while I was not a fan of the “twist” of Taskmaster, it was still a great watch on the big screen and is one I will watch again for sure.

# 4

venom let there be carnage Poster

With the help of Venom, the alien that lives inside him, Eddie Brock finds the bodies of the victims of Cletus Kasady, a serial killer who is rotting away in jail. And after a last interview before he is sent to die via lethal injection, Cletus bites Eddie and a small piece of the symbiote that is Venom enters Cletus’s blood stream and he becomes Carnage, a cold blooded killing machine that is out for revenge! And worse, Eddie and Venom have a fight that leaves Eddie open to be murdered by Cletus who wants him to pay for getting him on Death Row, and Venom is left jumping from person to person. Meanwhile Cletus breaks his super powered screaming girlfriend Shriek out of a research asylum and the two go on a reign of terror! It takes Eddie’s ex-girlfriend Anne Weying to finally get Venom and Eddie to come back together and to go up against Carnage and Shriek and stop their murdering ways once and for all. This was a good sequel that added more comedy elements as well as some really cool fight scenes between Venom and Carnage that moviegoers have been waiting to see. Both Tom Hardy and Woody Harrelson are great as Eddie and Cletus, and it is always great seeing Michelle Williams in films. The film did really well for Sony at the American box office bringing in $212,527,511 on a budget of $110 million. Plus Spoiler Alert Venom is placed in the MCU after this film when he is transported into their dimension while on vacation and sees Spider-Man on the TV.

# 3

Suicide Squad (2021) Poster

Amanda Waller needs two teams to head into Corto Maltese in order to destroy a laboratory that has a very world-threating project going on.  This of course is a suicide mission and she needs super villains to join the squads in order to get time shaved off their prison time. The first team is lead by Rick Flag as well has Harley Quinn, Savant, Captain Boomerang, Detachable Kid, Weasel, Javelin, Mongal and Blackguard, and they are mostly killed by an ambush, with the survivors finally meeting up with the second team that is lead by Bloodsport and consists of Peacemaker, King Shark, Polka-Dot Man and Ratcatcher 2.  Together they must take on the mercenaries that have taken over the island and finally have to come face to giant eye with the world changing project that is the massive alien known as Starro! This is a fun, zany, crazy superhero like no other as it’s packed with great jokes, bloody moments and characters that you find your self cheering for! Director and writer James Gunn has a way of making superhero movies more fun and adds his touch of humor and style to them that always seems to work. The film is well cast with Margot Robbie returning once more as Harley Quinn and adds such names as Idris Elda, John Cena, Sylvester Stallone and Daniela Melchior to the cast and all do fantastic in their roles with Stallone as King Shark being funny and awesome. The film was released on HBO Max by Warner Brothers at the same time as the theatrical release but it still did really well for them at the US box office bringing in $55,800,219 on a budget of $185 million. While I enjoyed the first film, this second one was in another league and is one that I think fans of none traditional superhero movies should watch.

# 2

shang chi and the legend of The ten rings Poster

Shang-Chi is the son of Xu Wenwu, the man who has the ten rings, and a magical fighter Ying Li who was the guardian of the mythical and magical village Ta Lo.  When his mom passes away and his father thinks that her old village is really keeping her hostage, he must travel to China and stop his father from unleashing ultimate evil onto the world, as well as work alongside his sister who he left behind at a young age. Will Shang-Chi be able to stop his father or will the universe be in the grip of evil darkness…watch this fun superhero martial arts film and find out. I grew up reading Shang-Chi, and while this film is pretty different from the classic 70’s Marvel comics, I still found it to be very entertaining and one of the best superhero films of the year! Simu Liu was well cast as Shang-Chi and captures the heroic spirit that is making up the Marvel Cinematic Universe and other actors like Awkafina, Meng’er Zhang and Tony Leung Chiu-Wai all do great in their respected roles as well. The film did great for Disney at the American box office bringing in $224,543,292 on a budget of $200 million. This is a fun action film that has cool fantasy elements thrown in, and you cannot go wrong with a film that has a cameo from the Hulk villain Abomination. Check this film out if you are enjoying these Marvel Comics movies as this is a really good one.

# 1

spiderman no way home Poster

The world knows that Peter Parker is Spider-Man, and this has caused him major issues as the press is harassing him and even many New Yorkers have turned on him, looking at him as a masked menace. So Peter goes to Doctor Strange and asks for a spell to be cast that will make people forget he is Spider-Man, but things go off the rails when Peter keeps changing the spell on who should remember his secret and this opens a rift in the multiverse and so enter Green Goblin, Sandman, Doctor Octopuss, Electro and The Lizard (from the past Sony Spider-Man films!) all of whom know Spider-Man’s secret but are confused when the Peter Parker they know is not the one they are seeing. Now Doctor Strange wants to send the villains back to their universe where many are dead, and Spider-Man wants to try and cure them before sending them home. The action and drama is turned up as Spidey tries to save them as Strange is trying to right the wrong of his spell. This is one amazing Superhero film and could be the best Marvel Film made up to this point as it has great surprises and brings together the past Spider-Man films and brings viewers once more some of the best Super-Villains from the past films as well as brings us past Spider-Men! The film has done amazing for Disney at the American box office and as of this update has brought in $572,642,000 on a budget of $200 million. Make sure to see this film on the big screen as it’s a great watch and a must own on home media when released.

So as you can see, both Marvel and DC delivered some great films for cinema-goers in 2021 and it looks like 2022 will also be delivering some great films in this genre. But with that said, let’s move onto my favorite genre: horror! And man I got to see so many limited released films in the theater and want to thank Englewood Cinema and Cinemark Dayton South for making all these horror films available to see on the silver screen.

horror21logo copy 2

# 33

The Stairs (2021) Poster

A young kid and his grandpa go missing after finding a strange staircase in the woods.  20 years later, a group of friends going on a hike stumble upon the stairs as well as a few strange people who seem to be stuck in a loop and even take on a slight monstrous appearance. And soon they are hunted down and killed by a creature that lives inside these phantom stairs and they must fight to stay alive, and even find the missing kid who was stuck inside the stairs and has not aged in the 20 years he was missing! But will they be able to get away from the creature the kid calls Grub Daddy? Or will they all become mangled mounds of flesh that the creature shreds? Watch this indie horror fright flick and find out. This is a fun B-Movie film that has some cool ideas and even uses practical effects, but is lacking a little in the story that is filled with some holes and characters that go no place and are never explained. The creature called Grub Daddy is kind of cool and reminded me of the Fluke Man from the show X-Files. Actress Tyra Colar is fantastic in her role as Jordon, one of the hikers, and Josh Crotty as hiker Dirty Doug steals the show. The film was a Fathom Event and did okay for Wandering Dragon Productions despite unknown box office numbers on an unknown budget. Over all this is a fun creature flick that took place in the woods, was well acted and is worth watching if you like films about unknowns being seen in our forests.

# 32

In The Earth (2021) Poster

Martin Lowery and park scout Alma head into the woods to find scientist Olivia Wendle to check on her and bring her equipment as no one has heard from her in months while she is working on a cure for a virus that has affected the world. But things go wrong for them while they hike to the site as they are attacked at night and their shoes are stolen.  Martin gets a very bad cut on his foot, and they meet Zach, a man who has taken them prisoner and alerts them that woods are alive and nature is mad! Even when they escape, they run into Olivia who as well is a believer that nature is talking to them. A hallucinating mist created by mushrooms is trapping Martin and Alma in the woods and forcing them to witness and see the madness of the woods. Now Alma and Martin must find away to escape the woods as nature does not want them to leave nor do Zach and Olivia and their time and sanity is running out. This is a nature themed horror movie that uses lots of light, sound and editing tricks to throw the viewers off and draws them into this madness. The film was shot in 15 days by director Ben Wheatley and was made during the pandemic of 2020. The film does a pretty good job of bring the slow moving creepy horror and even has a few very bloody scenes. The character of Alma is very likable while Martin is a little bland allowing the viewers to choose whom they really think is the main star and the one nature wants. The film had a very limited release for Neon and did well given that at the American Box Office bringing in $1,113,723.00 on an unknown budget. Over all it was a cool watch that was a great theater experience and one that I will watch again to see what hidden plot details I might have missed.

# 31

The Resort (2021) Poster

It’s Lex’s birthday and her friends want to surprise her by taking her to an abandoned resort on a Hawaiian island that is said to be haunted by many spirits but the worse being the half face girl! The reason they are being secretly dropped off by helicopter is due the fact Lex is writing a book all about hauntings, spirits and ghosts and this is one of her main attractions. Once they get there, the land is beautiful and the resort is creepy but nothing is paranormal, that is until night comes and the legend of the half face girl proves to be true and she is out for souls. This was a fun little horror flick that had a short run time, some cool effects and some good classic horror moments. The downside is the film at times seems disjointed as if scenes have been removed from the movie. The Half Face Girl is a cool looking ghost who can get the dead to be her servants and that makes her interesting as she controls them. The gore is pretty great and unexpected, and the ladies Bianca Haase and Michelle Randolph are very beautiful and good actresses. The film had a very small limited run in theaters and did okay for Vertical Entertainment bringing in $191,996.00 on an unknown budget. It’s worth seeing, and I’m glad I caught it in the theater. This is one I will watch again on home media.

# 30

Wrong Turn (2021) Poster

Jen Shaw and her friends go on a trip to hike the Appalachian Trail so that she can decide on what she wants to do with her life, and while hiking they make the mistake of going off the trail and run into sinister booby-traps as well as a group of people dressed in skulls and brush that call themselves The Foundation who have been living up in the mountains for generations since before the Civil War. But The Foundation doesn’t like trespassers, and they like it even less when strangers kill one of their own and now Jen and her friends are being picked off one by one and judged by the people of the mountain…and just for good measure Scott Shaw who is Jen’s rich and worried father has come looking for her. How will Jen survive and what will be left of her? This remake of the 2003 film series takes the deformed cannibals out of the picture and adds a secret society of mountain people who just want to be left alone, and I give it credit for trying something different, it’s just not a Wrong Turn film and takes more of a Midsommar approach to the tale and should have been called something else. The film is well cast with names like Charlotte Vega, Bill Sage, Emma Dumont, Daisy Head, Darius Clemons and Matthew Modine all fantastic in their roles. The film also did have a few bloody moments and did okay at the US Box Office bringing in $1,251,184.00 for Saban Films on a very small limited release. Over all this was just okay and will be one I will watch again someday as I got it on its home media release.

# 29

Fear Of Rain Poster

Rain Burroughs is a teenage girl who is struggling with her schizophrenia and has just gotten out of the hospital after a really bad breakdown and finds that she is friendless at school and is only one more bad episode away from being put into a mental hospital. But her luck starts to change as she makes a new friend in Caleb, a new kid at school, and her medication seems to be helping slightly. But when she thinks that her schoolteacher who is also her neighbor has kidnapped a young girl and is keeping her chained up in her house, Rain does not know if what she is seeing is real or is all just in her head. With her father not believing her, her new friend Caleb not knowing what is really going on, her mother being there for her but not taking her side, it’s up to Rain to solve the case of who’s real and who’s not and to come to terms with her own mental illness. The film is a thriller mixed with some horror elements and it stars Katherine Heigl, Harry Connick Jr, and Madison Iseman as Rain. This film had a very small limited theatrical release before it was put out on home media and brought in some money for Lionsgate at the US Box Office bringing in an unknown amount on an unknown budget. This is a good little thriller that has you guessing at what and who is real and was worth a watch at the theater, and Madison Iseman was really solid in her role as Rain Burroughs.  I picked it up on home media later in the year.

# 28

Zombie Reddy Poster

Mario is a game designer who along with his developing friends head to a friends wedding that gets them stuck in the middle of a family feud that will lead to their friend’s death! And after running into a stranger with their car, one of Mario’s friends is bitten and so a zombie outbreak breaks out in the middle of all this madness. Now Mario and his remaining friends as well as members of both families must fight together to stay alive and find a cure to the outbreak that only a crazy old man in the woods knows! This is a fun horror action comedy and the first zombie film in Telugu cinema that not only has splatter but also a few good laughs out loud moments. The film is well cast with Sajja Teja as Mario and actress Anandhi being two great standouts. The film had a limited screening in the US and did okay for Geetha Arts at the Box Office bringing in an unknown amount on a budget of $48 million. If you like Bollywood Horror films and films like Zombieland, The Dead Don’t Die and Shaun Of The Dead make sure to give this one a watch, but be warned it’s over two hours and it takes a bit for the zombie madness to kick in.

# 27

Antlers (2021) poster

Julia Meadows is a schoolteacher who has mental scars due to abuse at her father’s hands and when she sees the same issues in a student of hers named Lucas Weaver she tries to help.  But she soon learns that Lucas is hiding a big secret, that his father is turning into a Wendigo as is his baby brother who were attacked in an abandoned mine. And when his father fully turns and starts killing around the town, its up to Julia and her police officer brother Paul to try and save not only the town but also Lucas who is trying to keep what is left of his family together no matter how flesh eating they are becoming. This film has some creepy moments as well as some gruesome scenes and is a creature feature that was a great theater watch during the Halloween season. And I really did enjoy the effects and the film was more gruesome in spots then I expected. The film did okay for Searchlight Pictures at the American box office brining in $10,619,670 on an unknown budget. This is a fun freaky film that is one I bought on home media when released.

# 26

Separation (2021) Poster

Jeff Vahn is a struggling creator and comic book artist who is going through a terrible divorce from his wife Maggie who wants sole custody of their daughter Jenny as she thinks he is too irresponsible to be raising their child. But after Maggie is killed by a hit and run driver, Jeff finds that his daughter is not doing well as she has an imaginary friend that she says is a monster, the babysitter Samantha has a crush on him, and his father in law wants to take Jenny away.  He is working for an old college friends comic book company working on a dark horror comic and it is clear that something evil has entered his house and wants to scare and take. This is a creepy little horror flick that is very much in the same spirit as films like The Conjuring, Insidious and other supernatural horror. The effects of the monster spirit are really cool.  I like that it also adds the world of comic book making into its story. The film did okay for Open Road Films at the American Box Office bringing in $4,509,143.00 on an unknown budget. This is a fun creepy little film that has some cool evil spirits and some cool kills. I bought it once it was released on home media.

# 25

funhouse (2021) Poster

On an internet reality TV Show, the world watches as down and out celebs from internet blogs, Instagram and reality shows are brought together in one house with the promise of winning big prize money! The viewers also get to vote on who is their favorites and the bottom pick has to compete in a challenge in order to stay in the house by spinning a wheel. But soon the competitors and the viewers find out this house is one of horror as the losers are put into challenges that end in death and the celebrities are trapped in the house. One by one the bottom %’s have to compete in killer challenges as onlookers watch live on their laptops and cellphone screens, as the law tries to find the location of this killer red room reality show. Will the celebrities find a way to escape, who will win and why is the man in charge doing what he is doing and killing these internet famous people off in gruesome fashion? Well watch the Funhouse and find out. This was a limited release and was pretty dang entertaining and was filled with some cool kills, beautiful women and even monster themed MMA fighters! The film did okay for such a limited release for Magnet at the Box Office and brought in $110,571.00 worldwide. This is a fun watch for fans of films like Hostel and Saw that is a little less gruesome and gory and is worth a watch.

# 24

Seventh Day 2021 Poster

Father Daniel is a young priest who is teamed with Father Peter to learn the ways of performing exorcisms on possessed people and saving their lives and souls. When Daniel is taken to a home where a young boy killed his family, he opens his mind to evil and witnesses the massacre and realizes that the young boy has been possessed by a demon! Now he must find a way to save the boy’s soul and all the while try and figure out Father Peter and his past priests that learned the ways of the Exorcist from him. Can Father Daniel save the young boy’s soul from this very powerful demon or will he watch as the youngster burns in the flames of damnation? Watch this creepy little horror flick and find out! The Seventh Day is one of many films based on evil demonic spirits that was released in 2021, and like all the others, it was a solid and spooky watch that brought the chills as well as the twist and turns that made it a very entertaining watch on the big screen. I really liked the mood and pacing of the film and enjoyed the moments when the demon would take over the young boy and wreak havoc on those who were in his way. The film had a very limited release and did well given the time of release at the World Box Office for Vertical Entertainment bringing in $963,938.00 on an unknown budget. This was a fun fright flick and fans who like possession films should check it out. I also liked this one enough that I bought it on DVD when released.

# 23

The Unholy (2021) Poster

Gerry Fenn is a disgraced reporter who used to write for the big newspapers and is now writing for a tabloid that sends him to a small town in New England to cover a cow mutilation, but when the story turns out to be a bust, he soon finds himself a new one as a deaf and mute teenage girl Alice starts speaking and claims that the Virgin Mary is speaking to her and has given her the power to heal the sick and dying and crazy enough she is doing the miracles she claims! But soon Gerry, who helps the Catholic Church with this miracle and also gets the exclusive with Alice as the two have started to be come friends, finds out about Mary, a witch that was killed in the town that was the Bride Of Satan, and as strange deaths start happing to those who doubt Mary he must find the truth if Alice has been touched by holy goodness or touched by pure evil. This Sam Raimi produced PG-13 fright flick is a fun film that features a cool demonic ghost witch that is the stuff of nightmares.  The thing I liked about the film is that it has an early 2000’s feel to it and has the Raimi feel of jump scares and a demonic villain. The film did okay for Screen Gems at the American Box Office during the ongoing Virus Crisis bringing in $15,530,440.00 on a budget of unknown. It’s a fun creepy watch that has a cool evil sprit baddy that I ended up buying on home media.

# 22

Conjuring III Poster

Ed and Lorraine Warren are at the Glatzel home to try and perform an exorcism on an 8-year-old boy who is being possessed by a demon. At the exorcism the demon proves to be really strong and gives Ed a heart attack and then goes into Arne, a young man who is dating the boy’s sister. While Ed is recovering in the hospital, the demon makes Arne kills his girlfriend’s boss and now he is in prison waiting for trial. Once out of the hospital, Ed and Lorraine come to Arne’s aid and are a part of his defense team as they have to prove that the devil made him do it! So the Warrens soon find out that a devil cult is to blame as they have left a cursed totem in the Glatzel home, and that this totem was also found in another murder case and that whomever placed these totems has now targeted the Warrens and it makes them have to race against time to save the soul of Arne, stop the cultist and watch out for one another. The third film in The Conjuring series is a good spooky watch that showcases another case file of the Warrens. But while I did enjoy the film, it was the weakest of the series thus far and the demon and cult leader are neither as spooky nor motivated as that of the past spirits and the film just seemed to be lacking the charm that director James Wan brought to the series. But while a little underwhelming, it still was a good fright flick and seeing the chemistry of actors Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga always is a plus. The film did ok for New Line Cinema at the American Box Office bringing in $65,565,074.00 on a budget of only $39 million. The Conjuring III is a good film, and if you like the series check it out. I bought a copy once it was released on home media.

# 21

The Little Things (2021) Poster

A serial killer is killing women in California and has been for a while now and former Detective Joe Deacon meets the new detective on the case, Jim Baxter, and the pair start to work together to try and find who the killer is as the bodies of young women keep being found. They both find clues and start checking off the suspects and that’s when they find the creepy appliance repairman Albert Sparma, a man who is into true crime and even once confessed to a murder he didn’t do, but is he our man our cold blooded killer…or is their more to uncover in this horror thriller noir film? Watch for yourself and find out, and see who you think the killer is. This was a very well made film that reminded me a lot of films like Seven and Silence Of The Lambs.  It takes its time to build the case and has the viewers along for the investigation. The film is well cast with Denzel Washington and Rami Malek as the Detectives and Jared Leto is fantastic as the creepy murder suspect. The film did well for Warner Brothers at the Box Office in the US even during the ongoing pandemic bringing in $15,244,012.00 on a budget of $30 million. This was a great watch in the theater and was a nice edition to the thriller genre of Horror.

# 20

shadow in the cloud poster

Flight Officer Maude Garrett along with a top-secret package come aboard the plane “Fools Errand” on a secret mission and is not well welcomed by the crew and is forced to stay in the Sperry during take off.  Soon things start to get crazy as Japanese Fighter planes attack, and worse, a gremlin is on the plane causing destruction and panic like trapping her inside the Sperry. During all this the crew find out that Officer Maude Garrett is not who she says she is and is hiding a secret that will change the way they look at her as well as their trust in her. But in the end will Officer Garrett be able to save not only herself but also the package and the crew from the attacks from above as well as on the plane? This film was lots of fun and was the first horror film I saw in theater in 2021 and was a great way to kick off the year for horror.  Once more, this film proves why Chloe Grace Moretz is one of my favorite actresses doing cult style horror, action and sci-fi films, and she is great as Officer Maude Garrett who is a great character. The Gremlin is also really cool looking and almost appears to be part bat, rat and creature and is aggressive and very sneaky and destructive. The film was released still during the pandemic of early 2021 and had a very limited release at theaters and brought in $156,932.00 for Vertical Entertainment. This one I enjoyed lots and is one I bought on home media when released.

# 19

Resident Evil (2021) Poster

Raccoon City has been under the care of the Umbrella Corporation and now they are leaving the town and this is causing the town to slowly die…like really die as the townspeople are getting sick and are becoming flesh eating zombies! Claire Redfield returns to her hometown to get to the bottom of this evil plot and along with her brother Chris Redfield, Jill Valentine, Leon S. Kennedy, Richard Aiken, Brad Vickers and Chief Brian Irons they must survive the zombie carnage, expose the dirty secrets of Umbrella, find help in a unusual young woman, fight off a evil doctor, deal with a team trader, survive the attacks of mutated monsters and get out of Raccoon City alive. This film combines elements from the first two Capcom games in the Resident Evil series, and while I feel the final act of the film seems rushed, the film does have a few moments that are creepy and the zombies and monsters are pretty cool. One thing big fans of the game series might be annoyed with is that some of the characters do not act like they do in the games, and some are treated like the joke of the film…looking at you Leon. The film did sadly poorly for Screen Gems at the US box office brining in $16,890,005 on a budget of $25 million. Over all this is a fun zombie film that sticks more true to the games than the film series that came before it. And yes, I will buy on home media when released.

# 18

djinn (2021) poster

Dylan Jacobs is a young boy who is mute and witnessed a tragedy the took his mom at a young age and now he and his father who is a Radio DJ have moved into a new apartment. While unpacking he finds a book hidden in his closet and it’s a Book Of Shadows, and after his dad leaves for work the youngster uses the book in order to get a voice, but it comes with a catch as he has to survive one hour in the small apartment with an evil Djinn who wants to eat his heart and steal his soul, and has to blow out a candle that can only be put out after one hour. So Dylan must use his wits and what he can find around in order to keep the creature at bay. Can Dylan do it? Will the Djinn steal his soul? Will his wish come true and if so will it have a big price to pay? Well watch this fun film and found out those answers. This is one part haunted house, one part supernatural, one part Home Alone and one part Conjuring inspired as the Djinn is one evil character who tricks and tries to kill with aggression and glee. The film had a very limited release and brought in $124,772.00 on an unknown budget at the US Box Office for IFC. Over all a cool simple Horror Movie with some great moments and one I got on home media when released.

# 17

werewolves within (2021) poster

Finn Wheeler is a Forest Ranger who is assigned to a small town called Beaverfield after breaking up with his girlfriend, when he gets there its winter time and a big storm is on its way and me meets all the strange people of the town including young mail carrier Cecily as well as Jeanine a woman who owns the towns lodge. Also in town is businessman Sam who wants to build a pipeline through the town and is throwing around money and making the town split. But when a big storm hits, the towns generators are tampered with and the town people have to stay at the lodge for safety and that’s when they find out that a werewolf is loose in the town and is taking them out one by one, will Ranger Wheeler be able to save the town and stop the beast? Watch this funny Horror Comedy based on the video game and find out for yourself. The film stars Milana Vayntrub as mail carrier Cecily Moore who is known as the AT&T Girl and she is fantastic as is all of the cast who help create this strange small town. The film is really funny and the horror elements are well done with yes even the werewolf being seen. The film had a limited release and did good for IFC bringing them in an extra $575,614.00 at the US Box Office. A film that I bought on home media once released and again is a fun Horror Comedy that has a haunted house meets Twin Peaks feel.

# 16

Old (2021) Poster

The Cappa family head to a resort that is amazing and the reason they are doing so is that Guy and Prisca are having marriage issues and will be getting a divorce and want to have one more family outing before they tell their kids Maddox and Trent. But when they are invited to a private section of the beach they find that they are joined by a few select others and all seems perfect that is until a dead body washes ashore and everyone finds out that they are stuck on this beach and time is running fast as kids are growing up super fast, parents are getting older and anyone with a illness is finding that they are getting worse. And now they all must find away to escape this beach and find out why they were brought there with what seems is to die! And like always this film has a twist that was well thought out and helped this film feel like an episode of the Twilight Zone and was well casted with every actor doing their parts top notch with Thomasin McKenzie, Nikki Amuka-Bird, Aaron Pierre and Rufus Sewell all being great in their roles. The film did well during the ongoing pandemic at the US Box Office for Universal Pictures bringing in $48,242,510.00 on a budget of $18 million. M. Night Shyamalan is truly back on track on bringing fans creepy Horror Thrillers and Old is one I enjoyed and bought on home media when released.

# 15

Don't Breathe 2 Poster

Phoenix is a young girl who was grown up thinking that The Blind Man Norman Nordstrom is her father and that her mother died in a house fire, and he does his best to try and raise her to be a survivalist and does not allow her to go into town of have friends. But soon her real past comes calling when her real father who was in prison and was a meth dealer along with his friends show up to tell her the truth and get her back, but this family reunion is sour as her father has no interest in really getting his daughter back as he only wants her heart in order to give to his wife who is dying from inhaling meth fumes. Now its up to Norman to get her back as well as come clean to her on the monster he really is. This is a gritty horror film that in my opinion was leaps and bounds better then the first and while Norman is the “hero” in ways he still is the same cold-blooded killer who assaulted women and now his past and lies are catching up with him. The real hero of the film is Phoenix the young girl who fights to stay alive as well as to live a normal life surrounded by terrible people. Also the film is bloody and has some really cool and interesting kills. The film did pretty well for Sony at the US Box Office even during the then ongoing pandemic bringing in $32,638,038.00 on a budget of $15 million. Worth watching if you liked the first film and if you like you Horror Flicks a little gritty. Bought when on home media.

# 14

spiral from the book of Saw Poster

Detective Zeke Banks is a cop who is a loner after his department treat him like a rat after he turned a dirty cop in for a murder. But things turn weird for Zeke when a Jigsaw Copycat killer starts targeting dirty cops and is putting them into traps of self-mutilation that all end in death. No Zeke must trust his fellow officers who don’t respect him in order to stop the killings and figure out who this Jigsaw copycat killer is! This is the 9th film in the Saw series and takes a new direction and yet still feels right at home with the Jigsaw saga. The film has some great trap kills that are bloody and gory, an interesting story and is very topical about the trail of sadness that dirty cops can leave behind. Chris Rock is great in the role of Detective Banks and goes from funny to serious when he needs to. The film did just ok for Lionsgate at the US Box Office bringing in only $23,216,862.00 on a budget of $20 million. I for one hope that the Saw series continues on as I would like to see what’s next for Zeke Banks and the next chapter of the Book Of Saw has in store for us. Bought on home media when released.

# 13

escape room tournament of champions Poster

Survivors Zoey Davis and Ben Miller head to New York to try and find the headquarters of the Minos Corporation and when they get their they are tricked by a homeless man to get on a subway train, and they soon find that this was a trap by Minos and that the people also on the train with them was former players of their escape rooms. And this time around the traps are more mean spirited and more deadly as Minos does not like when players beat them and escape. One by one Zoey watches as the other players die in traps and she is always trying to figure out the room and keep her fellow players alive, and when she gets the shock of her life she goes truly against the wishes of Minos and does what she can to bring them down from the inside out. This is a fun sequel that adds more questions and delivers some answers and leaves me wanting to see a third film in the series. The films rooms are well thought out and add a level of Saw to them making them more dangerous then ever and the film is also casted really well with Taylor Russell, Logan Miller and Deborah Ann Woll return to their rolls from the first film and new names like Holland Roden and Indya Moore bringing new characters to this sick and twisted game. The film did well for Sony at the American Box Office given the time bringing in $25,188,958.00 on a budget of $15 million, and this I hope makes it that we get a part three. To sum it up if you liked the first film you will more than likely enjoy this second film and it is one I bought once released on home media.

# 12

The Vigil (2020) Poster

Yakov Ronen is a Jewish man who has went through a tragic event that has shook his faith, but running low on money he takes a job to act as a Shomer for a man who has just passed away. While in the house late at night watching over the mans body he meets the mans wife Mrs. Litvak who is battling Alzheimer’s as well as he starts seeing a shadow person as well as has bad visions of not only his past memories but the dead mans as well! Now trapped in this home with something demonic he must find his inner power to forgive himself for his past as well as fight for his soul as well as that of the one he is there to watch over. What a fun little ghost haunted house style film that feels like it could be right at home in the Conjuring film universe, the creature known as a Mazek that is a demonic sprit that’s head is backwards as it is always looking to the past is a creepy and strange creature that is fitting for its own film franchise. The acting is fantastic with Dave Davis, Lynn Cohen and Ronald Cohen being the standouts and the score by Michael Yezerski is top notch. A great and creepy PG-13 horror film that did pretty well for IFC at the American Box Office bringing in $50,439.00 on an unknown budget for a limited release. On a side not it was odd the films USA rights was originally with Blumhouse they sold the film to IFC for release, and that’s odd as this film was a perfect fit for Blumhouse.

# 11

halloween kills poster

Michael Myers survives the inferno trap that the Strode family left him to die in and is now back on the killing rampage in Haddenfield and the people have had enough and are wanting to fight back and kill the evil that has tormented their town for decades. Tommy Doyle as well as other survivors of the original 1978 massacre have came together and along with others are now looking for Michael to make evil die tonight. But they soon find out that Michael Myers might be more than human and his want for murder might just be stronger than their hatred for him. This sequel to the 2018 film is a down and dirty bloodbath that is filled with gruesome kills and showcases that Michael Myers is truly a killing machine who is brutal and cruel and kills for killing sake. This was a entertaining slasher film that was a fun watch on the big screen, but also had lots on puzzling moments that was tied into bad scripted segments with characters making head scratching decisions that didn’t fit the vibe of the film. But keep in mind while I did not like it as well as the 2018 film I did still enjoy it and it was a fun experience seeing it on the big screen opening night with a theater filled with Horror fans. It is well casted as well with Jamie Lee Curtis, Kyle Richards, Anthony Michael Hall, Judy Greer, Michael McDonald and actress Andi Matichak steals the film again as Allyson. The film did well for Universal at the American box office bringing in $92,002,155 on a budget of $20 million dollars. If you like the Halloween series, check this one out and of course got it on home media when it was released.

# 10

forever purge poster

The New Founding Fathers are back in control and the Purge has returned the night that all crime is legal is back as a yearly event, but there is something else brewing as a new movement has gripped the nation called Forever Purge a group of people who are now on a mission to kill any and all foreigners and wrong doers and keep the Purge going every day as their American right! And now ranch owners The Tuckers have to try and stay alive as they join their Hispanic helper Juan his wife Adela and friend T.T. in order to get to Mexico for safety as they have been marked by the Forever Purgers for death! And on their way to Mexico they must fight off their would be killers as well as try and help each other stay alive to see safety south of the border. This was a good Purge sequel that had a Horror Western feel to it and tried to mirror what was going on in society at the time. The film has some great kills, cool effects and some of the masked Purge killers have cool looks. I really liked the idea of a radical group who want to keep the Purge going year round being the ones that even the Founding Fathers do not like as they are to extreme even for them. The film did ok for Universal at the US Box Office during the ongoing pandemic bringing in $44,500,860.00 on a budget of $18 million. Over all a good sequel with a good story and is well acted…bought on home media when released. And I have to say also that this was leaps and bounds better then 2018’s “First Purge” film.

# 9

Night House (2021) Poster

Beth is a schoolteacher who’s husband Owen built them a dream house on the lake, and her life changes when one night Own takes the rowboat out on the lake and commits suicide. She is now alone at this house and strange things start to happen as if her dead husband is trying to talk to her from beyond the grave and the deeper she digs into his life the more strange things she discovers from the occult, to affairs to a weird unfinished home he built across the lake. Now Beth must try her best to find the truth and uncover if she is really being reached out to by the spirit of her husband or something much worse. This was a great spooky watch in the theater and several time throughout it my gal Juliet and my cousin Stephen both jumped from the scares. The blurred line between what is reality and what might be in her mind or even another dimension is really well done and the film has a great atmosphere that captures the feeling of loneliness and sadness. The films cast is also really great with Rebecca Hall killing it as widow Beth and Sarah Goldberg, Vondie Curtis-Hall and Stacy Martin all being fantastic in their supporting roles. The film did well for Searchlight Pictures giving the on-going pandemic at the American Box Office bringing in $7,100,581.00 on an unknown budget. This was a fun little fright flick and is one I got once on home media.

# 8

Malignant Poster

Maddie Mitchell is pregnant and when home from work with labor pains her husband and her get into it and he slams her head into a wall, and oddly enough that night the husband is killed by a long haired, mutated melted faced, disjointed killer who then also kills many old doctors who are all connected to helping kids. And Maddie is starting to have bad visions of the murders and are seeing how brutal they are being committed, and the killers name is Gabriel and some how he and Maddie are linked. Why are they connected? Why is he killing Doctors? Will the cops find the link? Is there more to Maddie then what is seen? Watch this weird and highly entertaining film to find out for yourself. The film has great effects and was way bloodier then expected and the killer Gabriel is really cool looking. And you know the film has to be good as it was from the mind of James Wan one of the new masters of modern Hollywood Horror. The film stars Annabelle Wallis, Marina Mazepa, Maddie Hasson and George Young in lead roles and are all well casted. The film did ok for New Line Cinema at the US box office bringing in $13,374,014.00 on a budget of $40 million, and keep in mind they did the same day release on streaming for this film on HBO Max. Very creepy a cool film that is one I bought when released and is one you should checkout if you like weird films.

# 7

Saint Maud Poster

Katie who is now going by the name Maud was a nurse at a hospital that had an accident during CPR to a patient and now finds herself as a home caregiver to a woman named Amanda who was once an actress who is now battling stage 4 cancer and is an atheist. Maud has found religion and wants so bad to save the soul of Amanda who she thinks has been sent her way by the will of God, but when Maud is fired she goes on a downward spiral and feels that she really needs to save the soul of Amanda and goes on a soul searching mission to do so, but Maud is so far gone mentally she does not live in reality and thinks God is always with her and is speaking to her. In the end Maud thinks she has done what has been asked of her she does an act that will deliver her to Gods waiting arms. This is a really downbeat film that captures the creepy slow burn feel of films like Carrie and The Exorcist and is a must watch for fans of A24 Horror! The film is filled with a very uneasy feeling throughout and is a Horror Film that feels real to life. The film had a very limited release here in America and did well for A24 at the Box Office world wide bringing in $1,383,868.00 on an unknown budget. This is a great film for those who like slow burn Horror Films that have a touch of art house film feel thrown in. Got on home media when released!

# 6

Army Of The Dead (2021) Poster

After a military experiment zombie escapes from a road accident he infects all of Vegas to the point where a group of survivors try to save others before the whole area is sealed off by metal containers. After time passes a rich businessman tracks down the survivors and offers them millions of dollars in order to go back into Vegas and get the large amount of cash out of his casino vault before the government drops a nuclear bomb on the city to kill the zombie horde. So this new group is lead by Scott Ward and his daughter Kate as the enter the city and learn that these zombies are way smatter then thought and have created their own savage society. But when something goes wrong and the Queen of the zombies is killed the group is in real trouble as the zombies want to rip them apart to avenge their Queen. Can Scott get the money and his crew out of Vegas before they become zombie dinner or are blown up by the bomb? Watch this Zach Snyder zombie flick to find out! This is an epic and fun zombie action film that had Zach Snyder return to the zombie genre and was well casted with names like Dave Bautista, Ella Purnell, Omari Harwick, Ana de la Reguera and Nora Arnezeder to name a few. The film is loaded with zombie kills and is bloody and even brings in a zombie tiger! A fun, bloody ride the whole time! The film did well for Netflix on a limited release at the US Box Office bringing in an unknown amount on a budget of $90 million. This is a fun fright flick that I cannot wait to see a sequel to and hope Netflix ends up releasing it on Blu-Ray and DVD so that I can get a copy for my collection.

# 5

Psycho Goreman Poster

Mimi is a young girl who does what she wants to do and is a very strange kid and her older brother Luke just goes along with her strange ideas including her game “Crazy Ball” and after loosing she makes her brother dig his own grave in the backyard and instead they find a jewel stone that frees an imprisoned alien killing machine called Arch-Duke Of Nightmares! While the monster is a killing machine he has to follow the orders of Mimi who holds the stone and she turns this killing machine into her fiend and calls him Psycho Goreman or PG for short! But when a group called The Templers find out they send Pandora to Earth to kills PG once and for all. But with the help of Mimi and her family Psycho Gorman does battle with Pandora and if he wins he can fulfill is mission of murder and destruction and if Pandora wins the world will be filled with slavery and no free will. This is an amazing Horror Comedy from writer director Steven Kostanski the man behind such films as The Void, Manborg and Father’s Day that is gory and funny all at the same time and has what I think could be the next creature feature icon of Horror Comedies along side the likes of Wolf Cop. The film had a limited release in theaters during the ongoing pandemic and did well for RLJE at the US Box Office bringing in $95,182.00 showing that Indie Horror is alive and well. If you have not seen this one yet, make sure to check it out and of course I bought this on home media when released.

# 4

last night in soho (2021) poster

Eloise is a young woman who is going to London for fashion school and finds that she does not fit in and when leaving her dorm to live in a old apartment building visions of the cities past fill her dreams and she finds herself involved in finding out who killed inspiring singer Sandie who’s manager promised her the world, but delivered her into sex work. But when Eloise thinks she has figured out who has killed Sandie she tries to bring them to justice as well as find Sandie, but this causes her classmates and the police to think she is crazy! But is Eloise crazy and will she uncover what really happened to the missing singer…well watch this film and find out. First thing I have to say is that this film made me fall in love with Thomasin McKenzie who plays Eloise as an actress and she is quickly becoming one of my favorite newer actresses in the Horror genre. The film does a great job of going from modern times to flashing back to the 1960’s and the characters and story had be drawn in and that’s surprising as I am not a big fan of most of Edgar Wright’s films but this one I think is his best. The film had a few spooky moments and enough twist and turns to really help add to the chills, and yes some of the twists can be predictable but I still enjoyed it. The film is well casted with names like Anya Taylor-Joy, Matt Smith, Diana Rigg, Terence Stamp and Michael Ajao making up the lead cast. The film sadly did not do well for Universal at the US box office bringing in only $10,127,625 on a budget of $43 million. This was a really cool stylish Horror Film that does a great job also on the use of lights, and yes will buy on Home Media.

# 3

Candyman (2021) Poster

Anthony McCoy is a visual artists who has it all, a beautiful and successful girlfriend named Brianna, he lives in a upper class high rise apartment and is loving life even if he is having an artist block that is keeping him from painting his next masterwork, but when hearing the legend of Helen Lyle and Candyman he gets the inspiration for his next series of work. Anthony has made a big mistake though as he has gotten the attention of Candyman and he learns the legacy, roots and horror that is behind this hooked handed boogeyman killer…but he also learns that his own life just might be connected to him and that the hive is many when it comes to Candyman. This is a great sequel to the 1992 cult classic film and helps add to the legend of the film series and even does a good job of not totally forgetting about parts 2 and 3 in the series. The film is well casted with names like Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Teyonah Parris, Michael Hargrove and Nathan Stewart-Jarrett all being fantastic in their roles and it was also amazing seeing Tony Todd and Vanessa Williams returning in their roles from the first film. The film has some bloody and creepy moments and really was a fantastic fright film on the big screen. The film did well at the American Box Office given the pandemic was coming back around with a new wave as it brought in $61,186,570.00 for Universal on a budget of $25 million dollars. If you like the Candyman film series give this one a watch, and yes bought on home media when released.

# 2

Godzilla vs Kong (2021) Poster

Godzilla is running wild and attacking company Apex factories and they seem unprovoked turning mankind against the titan they once called a protector. Their only hope is to use Kong to find out if the Hollow Earth energy is true as it is the place they think the titans might have came from and was the place Godzilla and Kong’s kind had wars with one another making them bitter enemies. With mankind taking Kong from Skull Island and taking him to the gateway to Hollow Earth in Antarctica Godzilla is annoyed that another alpha Titan is present and goes on the attack causing the two Titans to be at odds with each other even when the battle ends and this makes it that Godzilla and King Kong are bitter rivals that while they respect each other they also clearly hate each other. While Kong enters Hollowed Earth and learns about his own families past as well as finding a powerful axe that holds lots of power. All the while Godzilla is stomping around and destroying Apex factories causing Monarch and mankind to fear his wrath! And when Kong shows up in Hong Kong he and Godzilla have a massive fight that leaves them both wounded and one Titan near death, and worse for everyone Apex has been working on a project that is creating their own Titan made of metal and is called Mechagodzilla! Who will win this epic battle of Kong vs. Godzilla and what terror does Mechagodzilla have in store for the winner? Check out this Monstervese movie and find out for yourself. What a fun film that pits the worlds two most iconic Kaiju against each other for the amusement of the viewers, plus for me I am always up for a new King Kong and Godzilla film! Plus its been way to long sense we seen these two Titans of cinema in the same movie again as it was 1962 when they last shared a film, and that’s crazy. The film did great for Warner Brothers at the US Box Office bringing in $100,563,133.00 on a budget of $200 million, even though WB tried their best to ruin the release with the crappy HBO Max same day release. You can never go wrong with Giant Monster Horror, and this is one that I bought on physical media when released.

# 1

Quiet Place II Poster

Evelyn Abbott and her kids Regan, Marcus and the baby are leaving their farm behind and heading towards another survivors shelter and find that the long time family friend Emmett is the one that has been signaling to the family for years. And once inside his shelter in a factory they find out that a radio station has been playing the same song “Beyond The See” by Frank Sinatra and Regan has an idea to get onto the air and use her hearing aid to broadcast over the airwaves and give the humans a chance to fight back, and she sneaks away from her family to become the hero the world needs. Emmett goes after her and together the two go on a quest to get a boat and get to the island to pull off this plan and along the way must dodge the creatures as well as the corrupted humans who want to steal what they have. In the end Regan and Emmett make it to the island and find that its filled with peaceful families and survivors…and one creature has also made it ashore. So now it’s a race to the radio station to give humans a chance to strike back against these killing machine monsters. This was a great sequel that I would say is on par if not slightly better then the original and that’s saying something as the original was an amazing fright flick. They also did a great job of making sure the original cast of Millicent Simmonds, Emily Blunt and Noah Jupe returned as well as added names like Cillian Murphy and Djimon Hounsou to the cast. The film did great for Paramount Pictures at the US Box Office bringing in $160,072,261.00 on a budget of only $61 million. A great film that took my # 1 spot and once released on home media I for sure bought a copy.

What a fun year of seeing movies at the theater as during these last stressful years, getting lost in films on the silver screen is a great way to relax and forget the issues that are plaguing the real world. And man I have to stress that so many amazing horror films got released this year and many are sequels to series that I really have enjoyed and glad to see horror alive and well at the cinema and I am looking forward to the films of 2022! While we are sitting here in the Rotten Ink Theater, I also want to think you for reading Rotten Ink as its amazing that this blog is now 10 years old, and I would also like to let you know that the next update will continue our look at the original cast Star Trek movies and we are on “Star Trek V: The Final Frontier” so that should be a fun one. So until next time read a comic or three, watch a movie at the theater or two and as always support your local Horror Host. See you next update for another voyage with the crew of the Enterprise.

Star Trek V Preview Logo

The Original Thunderbolt Of The DC Universe!

Welcome back to Rotten Ink.  For this update I decided to once more take a look at a DC Comic series of a hero that seems to not get the respect of the likes of Superman and Batman so I decided to choose Peter Cannon Thunderbolt, a character that in 1983 was sold to DC by Charlton Comics and would last a small amount of issues for them and deliver a classic style hero in a 90’s comic style and fashion. While DC Comics right now are on my bad list for their push for digital comics, I still must say I respect their classic heroes and their push to try and bring back and create new ones that started in the 70’s and ran throughout the 90’s. So sit back relax and let’s take a heroic journey with Thunderbolt!

As a young boy, Peter Cannon lost both of his parents, as they battled as medical workers the black plague, and was raised in a monastery in the Himalayan Mountains and trained his body and mind to become a super athletic and perfect person…and while studding the monks scrolls he figured out that we as humans don’t use all our brains and he figured out how to tap into those parts and became a superhero named Thunderbolt once he moved to America. As the masked Thunderbolt he would fight crime as well as still try to learn and discover more of what the mind and body can do! His first comic book appearance was in 1966 as Thunderbolt # 1 was released by Charlton Comics and was created by Pete Morisi. Thunderbolts run at Charlton Comics would last for 11 issues and his run came to an end in 1967 as many of the companies superhero titles were cancelled. Thunderbolt would next end up at DC Comics in 1985 as part of the “Crisis On Infinite Earths” even series, as DC had bought all of Charlton Comics superheroes in 1983. Thunderbolt would not get his own series again until 1992 and would last for 12 issues before being cancelled again. During his time at DC he also had a brief run with the Justice League and was used to try and draw interest in classic heroes. And lastly he was in a 10 issue run at Dynamite Comics that started in 2012. For many long years now, Thunderbolt has not been seen in the pages of comics and while it looks like he has been sent to the long box in the sky, I don’t think you can count him out and I am sure DC or another comic company in time will dust him off for more adventures.

Growing up I knew nothing of the classic era of Thunderbolt as I never read any of the Charlton Comics (nor the Crisis On Infinite Earths story) and to be honest I never even seen one of his classic issues I didn’t even know he was around until 1992 thanks to DC Comics bringing him back to comic book shelves. And as odd as this sounds I rented out issues from the local library to read. And while he was not a must read comic for me I did find myself enjoying his adventures. It’s crazy that in 2021 I will be reading some of these comics again that I have not read sense the 90’s! And to be honest I am looking forward to doing so as it will be interesting to see if me in my 40’s will find a new respect for the character and if he will become one of my classic golden age heroes. Oh and while looking up history of Thunderbolt I learned that the character creator Pete Morisi only created the character after he tried to buy the rights of the original Daredevil, but the creator wanted a share of all profits and this made Morisi just create his own hero!

Really quick I would like to talk about the CD release of “OMG I Love Jazz” by Robyn Adele who is one of my favorite female vocalist going today along side Jewel, Iggy Azalea, Poppy, Cyndi Lauper and Lady Gaga! I want to also say that while I have nothing against Jazz music it is not a genre I normally listen to so this should be very interesting, but Robyn’s voice is what brought me to buy and try this CD off her official website store. I choose a snowy, grey-skied day in January 2021 to listen to this album and was working on a few projects that included updates for here at Rotten Ink as well as a few comic projects for Sparkle. OMG I Love Jazz is 15 tracks and really does have a big band jazz sound and is mixed with Robyn’s golden voice, and I know this sounds weird but for some reason this CD reminds me of the 1990 Dick Tracy movie and the songs done by Madonna for the soundtrack. My top three favorite tracks on this release are Ain’t Misbehavin’, Don’t Mean A Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing) and Bye Bye Blackbird as I feel all three have a great sound and Robyn’s voice on all three tracks is on point! If I had to pick my favorite track it would be Don’t Mean A Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing) as it’s a upbeat song and has that classic Jazz and Swing sound that can put a smile on your face. To wrap up this quick look at OMG I Love Jazz I would say that its not for everyone as it has a very old time sound, but for those who love fun natured Jazz music song by a majorly talented female vocalist I would say go and get a copy now! And for those who are not familiar with Robyn Adele look her up on YouTube and give some of her cover songs a listen to as she really is super talented and has a wonderful voice.

So as you longtime readers and friends know I grew up in the village of Waynesville, Ohio and I have heard the news that my old elementary and middle school are being torn down and a new school is being built. And while I am super happy that the next generations of Spartans are getting new classrooms and long overdue updates, I am still a little bummed out that the school buildings that meant so much to me as a kid will be gone forever lost in memories. I mean at that school I can remember talking to friends like Fred Marion, Jeremy Patton, Todd Osborne, Joanna Fields, Wes Coffman and many others about Movies, Comics, Cartoons, TV Shows, Wrestling, Horror Hosts, Video Games and normal school topics. I can remember the cool movie days in the gym were we got to watch Home Alone or Willy Wonka And The Chocolate Factory. In that same gym I remember listening to the Gettysburg Address being given by an actor dressed as Abe Lincoln, as well as doing the Arnold Schwarzenegger fitness challenge and watching episodes of Slim Goodbody in gym class. I remember the cafeteria pizza, the milk cartons that had Safety Pup on them and trading food with fellow classmates. I remember crushing on Tina Manning and never getting the nerve to ask her out. I remember the numerous book fairs that came through and the Garfield, U.S Acres, Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark and WWF books I would buy. I can remember being in a Christmas play as a Newsboy talking about a talking Snowman. I can remember playing basketball in the gym during intermission and being pretty good. I can remember watching Star Trek IV, Olympics and O.J Trail in Mr. York’s science class. The orange steps, the pencil machines that had NFL, WWF and Halloween pencils in them as well as the erasers that would sometimes be the heads of Looney Tunes characters. And just the over all bond and fun times that my classmates and I had and shared together at those school buildings.

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On May 23, 2021, Juliet and I headed to Waynesville so that I could at least walk around the old building before they are gone as I have heard the 1915 part is soon to be torn down and those hallways will never have young minds walking around them to get to class again. It was really cool walking around that old school building taking pictures as well as telling Juliet old stories about my school days as well as trying to remember where so many of my classes uses to be, sadly we could not get inside as I missed the reunion day that allowed past school students to do so one last time. But still just walking around the old school building and back to the old football field was lots of fun and flooded me with memories as well as oddly enough kind of made me feel young again in my old age. So really I guess I just wanted to share these pictures I took as well as share a few of those memories and I also want to say “Thank You” to all my fellow classmates that made my school time at Waynesville a very awesome time and  plus thank you all again for being apart of my life and help shaping me into the creative person I am today.

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Well on May 29, 2021 they opened up Waynesville Elementary and Middle School one more time for school alumni and Juliet and I showed up around an half an hour early and to our shock the doors were already open so we walked in and for a pretty good time we had the schools to ourselves to tour! The first place I headed was the gymnasium, as I had to see it one last time and the first thing once walking up the old concrete stairs I noticed was that many of the old basketball hoops was taken down and the ones still up where from my time going there! Sadly the old wooden bleachers were gone and all that remained of them was the bases, a little bummed, as I would have loved to sit on them one last time. The old scoreboard was still hanging and seeing it brought back lots of fun memories. The gym floor still looked good and while it was clearly not the same as when I was a kid it still was neat to see. The stage was a sight for sore eyes and seeing it was awesome and walking across it also felt so cool and flooded me with so much memories of gym class. This was so great to so walk that gym again and I almost wish that I would have jogged around and did one final lap.

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Once we left the gym we walked around the halls and past all the sadly now gutted class rooms, but seeing the old chalk boards, tube TV’s with VCR’s still hanging on the walls brought a big smile to my face. The hallway floors were torn up and it was sad seeing the destruction and dismantling all around as even some fixtures where missing or stacked in the halls. But seeing the old PA speakers that use to give us the morning announcements from still hanging as well as the old pencil sharpeners still bolted to the walls and chalkboards was great to see. While walking the hallways it was also cool seeing the changes that was made to the building after I was no longer a student like they added an elevator and the massive stairs that I remember where now way smaller and divided up. I got to walk into the old cafeteria, see the old music room, went to the school library, walk into Mr. York’s old science classroom again as well as see an old shelf that had one of my old teachers names still on it! Walking down those hallways I had a rush of memories and felt like a kid again even as my pride of being a Waynesville Spartan filled my being I knew that while this chapter in Spartan history was coming to an end the new School building would build the next legacy and memories for the future generation. Also when walking downstairs of the 1915 building I had to snap a picture of the old stairwell as I can remember some of my fellow classmates as well as myself hiding under there and jumping out to scare each other as well as we used that spot to hide things, but when I was in school they did also store stuff under there.

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Waynesville is known for its ghosts and even when I was walking the halls of Waynesville Middle School we all heard the tales of the school being haunted, and when walking around one last time before it was to be tore down one thing written on a blackboard made me smile and that was a message from the ghosts of the third floor saying they are not going anywhere! I like the idea that the old ghosts of the school found some old chalk and wrote the message to the living, letting them know that they will forever be roaming and haunting that land…building or no building. But I also like that a student wrote this humors and “spooky” message for people to see, also glad to see that the Horror Spirit of Waynesville youth is alive and well.

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It’s time now for us to dive into the 12 issues of Thunderbolt released by DC Comics and as I stated before I am looking forward re-reading this and I am going to do something a little different as after the review I am going to give my ideas of what DC Comics could have done with Thunderbolt if they would have kept him in their universe! I want to thank Game Swap Kettering and Lone Star Comics for having these issues in stock and making this update possible. I want to remind you readers that I grade these comics on a star scale of 1 to 4 and am looking for how well the comics stay to the source material, it’s entertainment value and it’s art and story. So if you are ready let’s see what Thunderbolt has in store for evildoers.

Peter Cannon Thunderbolt # 1  ***
Released in 1992     Cover Price $1.25     DC Comics     # 1 of 12

Thunderbolt is fighting some thugs off in a New York ally as they just robbed some antiques from his alter-egos Peter Cannons exhibit when things go bad real fast and he is almost beaten to death by a metal suited bad guy named Trydan who leaves him for dead. But thankfully he is found and rescued by Green Lantern who rushes him to the hospital and saves his life. Once awaken Peter finds himself doubting his ability to be a superhero in this modern world filled with Superman, The Flash and Wonder Woman, even his best friend Tabu and Green Lantern come to visit and can not cheer him up after his defeat. Peter Cannon just sees himself as an orphan who was trained by Monks and scrolls in a monastery in the mountains of the Himalayas who is an outdated hero in a world filed with super powered ones. Peter and Tabu take their antiques and teachings to London and are flying around on a blimp filled with the rich and elite when Peter starts chatting with the beautiful Cairo DeFrey as news woman Anne-Marie Brogan talks with Tabu about setting up a interview with Peter when a group of masked men rush in calling themselves Crimson Dawn and claims they are going after Cairo due to her families crimes again the environment. As panic runs through the guests as the gun caring Crimson Dawn takes Cairo away to the cockpit and holds everyone one else hostage, when Tabu pushes Peter into becoming the hero again…and after fighting it Peter makes a mask and rushes to save Cairo and this ends issue one.

This is a great way to bring a classic hero back to the pages of comic books and sometimes I think DC Comics back in the 90’s had a gift to do so. This issues plot has much time jumps and takes us to Tibet to New York to London and shows Peter’s rise and fall as a hero, plus his rise once more as he fears that time has passed him by and that the villains of this modern times are getting bigger, badder and stronger! And when all seems lost for Peter to ever be Thunderbolt again he is forced to once more be the hero he was trained to be. Peter Cannon is a man who has had a hard life as he lost his parents while a infant and is raised in Tibet and trained to be a hero called Thunderbolt, and once set out into the world he still feels he needs to always be a hero. And when he gets his but kicked by a super villain and left for dead his ego and courage is bruised and this makes him question his ability to fright crime as well as life. Peter is a very interesting character because he has layers to him while he is a hero he also has some mental depression. Tabu is Peter’s best friend and also works as his agent in the world of arts and was raised with him in Tibet, he is very loyal to his friend and is also the voice of reason to try and let him know that he is a hero that’s needed in the world. Cairo DeFrey clearly is not only part owner of a massive business but is also more then she appears as she has got the attention of someone who wants her dear or at least to pay for expanding the business into places she shouldn’t! The Crimson Dawn is a bunch of red masked, gun caring terrorist thugs who while dangerous also seem very un-prepared for what they are doing. This really was a great way to bring a classic hero into the 90’s world of over powerful superheroes and does make you smile as you watch Thunderbolt meet Green Lantern who saves his life by getting him to the hospital in time. The cover is eye-catching and has a classic comic feel with a 90’s DC Comic look. The interior art is done by Mike Collins and its really great and I also have to give him credit for the story as he wrote it! Over all I think this is a really great first issue and has me hooked on wanting to re-read this series again after all these years.

Peter Cannon Thunderbolt # 2  ***
Released in 1992     Cover Price $1.25     DC Comics     # 2 of 12

Thunderbolt knocks out the members of the Crimson Dawn and saves the life of Cairo DeFrey, but during the fight the blimps control is damaged and worse one of the Crimson Dawn members damages the gas line and Thunderbolt and the blimp Captain have to emergency manually crash land the blimp into London! During the landing Thunderbolt remembers back to his training in Tibet when a fellow young man in training got his face burnt trying to save the lives of his fellow kids when a plane crashes and catches fire and he rushes to remove the bombs so they don’t explode and kill everyone near. Once they land the blimp reporter Anne-Marie Brogan is on it and Thunderbolt turns back into Peter Cannon while Detective Inspector James Flint alerts Cairo that the Crimson Dawn seemed to be just hired local thugs hiding behind the masks of being environmental terrorists, she blows off the information and invites Peter to join her on her boat the next day as Tabu alerts his friend that he does not trust her. While in London a masked costumed robber uses powers to rob an ATM, Crime Boss Johnny Wheeler is out with his son to see a movie at the theater and when his son goes to get the car it explodes and kills him and lastly at the London Museum a Egyptian Coffin is opened and one guard is dead of shock as a being named Evila has returned.

This second issue is packed with lots of plots all going on and starting! As we get Peter Cannon finding the courage to become a hero again and help land an out of control blimp while chaos and crime is running randomly throughout London! Peter Cannon quickly remembers why he was chosen and loved being a hero and seems to be back in the game after kicking some terrorist butt, he also seems to be way to trusting of a pretty face and seems to always second guess his best friends words as Tabu seems to be the one who pays more attention to the actions and behaviors of those around. Tabu also is clearly the one who pushes for Peter to become Thunderbolt once more as he is doing so not only for the legacy of his temple but also for the mental health of his friend. Cairo DeFrey the rich business woman while coming off like a sweet woman who cares about her family business also comes off like she is hiding something and I think she clearly knows more then what she is saying when it comes to who sent the Crimson Dawn. The masked ATM robber and Mr. Wheeler I am sure will be coming into play in coming up issues and its clear that what ever Evila is she is dangerous and deadly! I also think the burnt face young man from Peters past will also come into play as when we see the flashback of the trials that Peter had to pass in order to become Thunderbolt…the scared face youth was not happy at all as it’s clear he thought his bravery would make him the chosen one. I really dig that this story this far is taking so many twists and truns and we are going from present day to the pass to show the whole story. Also they have a cameo from Justice League Europe member Elongated Man that is pretty funny as he is on the news denying that they had anything to do with the landing of the blimp. The story for me this far feels like a blend of Classic Comic Hero and Spy Stories and that’s a good thing as it is keeping me guessing on what is coming up and who is to be trusted. The cover of this issue is ok and while cool they should have not focused on one the trials from his past when he had to face a snow leopard in an arena. The story and art is great and done by Mike Collins again. A great first read and really does make me look forward to reading the rest of this series for the first time. So with that lest see who all the new plots and characters in this issue play out in issue three, shall we?

Peter Cannon Thunderbolt # 3  ***
Released in 1992     Cover Price $1.25     DC Comics     # 3 of 12

At the London museum two security guards are dead by the hands of the evil Egyption Queen called Evila who animates statues into her army as she wants revenge on Thunderbolt who defeated her many decades back when she first was brought back to life. Meanwhile at the posh flat of Peter Cannon he is being interviewed by Anne-Marie Brogan for a paper article as rain pours down outside and Tabu sits backs and listens. Detective Inspector James Flint heads to the hospital and talks to a friend who works for Mr. Wheeler to show respect for the hit on his son who is in the hospital and dying, the man alerts Flint that a gang war is brewing that will take place in London. Mean while at a mansion we meet Victor Cypher who is throwing a dinner party and introduces them to the half face masked Andreas Havoc who he claims will be their main muscle. While Peter Cannon rushes to the museum for his lunch date with Cairo DeFrey who informs him they will have to go another day as the mummy of Evila has came alive and is on the loose and killed two security guards, Peter Cannon is not happy to hear his old enemy is back from the grave…again! At a Disco the ATM Robber who’s name is Tekk is holding up the owners for “protection” money as he is working for Scorpio the mob that is at war now with Wheeler’s mob, when they don’t pay he uses his power and blows out all the light bulbs in the building and says he will be back for the cash after they clean up. Peter returns home only to find that the Museum is now surrounded by a force field, so he changes into his Thunderbolt costume and heads back to find that the police can not make it past the force field, and with Inspector James Flint blessing Thunderbolt gives it a try and makes it through! Once inside Thunderbolt is attacked and knocked out by Evila and her statue turned to like henchmen.

This third issue has so much going on and so many plots and characters are thrown at you as you try to keep up on who, what, when and were and I have to say that’s what makes this comic series so good! The many plots of this issue has Thunderbolt learning that his old villain Evila is back from the dead and has killed some innocent people, while mobster Mr. Wheeler is dealing with his son who is dying in a hospital from a hit his right hand man warns James Flint that a war is about to pop off! And we also have the costume goon Tekk bulling local business for protection money and we meet a rich man Cairo DeFrey who is clearly up to no good. Peter Cannon has found his want and love for being a costumed hero and as well as Thunderbolt really wants to smash and stop crime in London, England. I think Inspector James Flint wants to find who set the car bomb that has a local mobster’s son on his deathbed, while Flint is a good man of the law I think he is also loyal to his close friend who is working for the mob family. Evila shows that she is super powerful and has dark forces and powers on her side, plus she clearly lets Thunderbolt know she will not be tricked again! Our other series baddies Tekk, Victor Cypher and Andreas Havoc are around and while they have done some bad things this far have not become the full threats you know they will become. The over all fast pace and introduction of so many characters and stories is what keeps this Thunderbolt series interesting as they are talking a classic hero and showing that you don’t have to fly nor have mutant powers to be a complex hero. I will say that the cover is pretty great and has that 90’s DC Comics charm and the art by Mike Collins is top notch. At this point being three issues into DC Comics Thunderbolt I have to say I am a fan and very much looking forward to what issue four has in store for us, as well as how this over all story will play out!

Peter Cannon Thunderbolt # 4  ***
Released in 1992     Cover Price $1.25     DC Comics     # 4 of 12

In side the force field at the museum Thunderbolt is hurt by the beating he has taken as Evila informs him that she plans to kill him and then raise an army of the dead to take over earth, and oddly enough she seems to know more about him this time and his life in Tibet. Thunderbolt fights back hard and challenges her to fight him once more on another astral plane the place she lost their last fight on and she in a fight of anger and out of ego agrees. Meanwhile reporter Anne-Marie Brogan heads to interview Maude Grymes on old lady who is a fortuneteller and she during the interview tells Anne-Marie she has a message for Peter Cannon. Meanwhile in the astral plane realm Evila tries and uses Thunderbolt’s fears against of defeat, but he is able to conquer it when he greatest fear attacks her and that’s being buried alive. As she explains her backstory and her true power to Thunderbolt as she gets bound by mummy wrappings doing so, back in normal life hero The Crusader stops a robbery and is around as well. Back to the fight Evila informs Thunderbolt that she set him up and was never facing her fear what she was really doing was giving her statue soldiers orders to attack Thunderbolts body in the real world and this forces him to break the bound on the realm and causes stress on Evila’s power and they both are back at the museum. While across the world Victor Cypher and Andreas Havoc are talking about big plans and Havoc talks about his past destiny being taken away from him and its clear they want to take control of Tibet and that this half masked man is the kid who saved lives in Peter’s past from the helicopter crash. Thunderbolt ends up making Evila drain all her dark magic and she appears to kill herself and sends her spirit into the wind, and this confuses Thunderbolt as she would rather die again then face defeat. In the end Mr. Wheeler’s son has died and now he alerts his men it’s a gang war.

The plot of this issue has a showdown between Thunderbolt and Evila who have a bad history against each other and are very bitter enemies and fight in our world as well as a astral plane as they truly want to stop each other from winning. And during this epic fight so many questions of Thunderbolts goes unanswered as Evila seems to have returned knowing way to much about him and would rather die then to be defeated again! Thunderbolt clearly by this issue has gotten over his near death defeat in New York and is ready to be the hero London needs and will push himself to do so! Evila is powerful but her ego causes her to crack and she pushes herself way too much and looses her powers because of her push. While at the end of the issue it looks like Evila is dead I am saying she is not gone for good as I think she left the fight to regain her powers. And it’s clear as day to me that Andreas Havoc was one of the kids from the Tibet temple who was burnt and now wants revenge on the monks and Peter who he feels took away his true calling in life. Victor Cypher is clearly a man who is greedy and wants power and money and has set his sights on Tibet, his homeland. I am wondering who Maude Grymes is and what message did she give Anne-Marie to tell Peter Cannon. Plus Mr. Wheeler has lost it all and I think this war for the streets is going to be bloody and the bodies will pile up if Thunderbolt and/or James Flint don’t step in and stop it. And now we have another hero in town called The Crusader who I am sure will be a good hero friend to have during all this tension in London that is about to go down. Great story and the pace moves fast as the fight of Thunderbolt and Evila takes up much of the issues and all the side stories fit nicely in-between. The cover is ok and showcases Evila and the art is once more done by Mike Collins and is fantastic like before. Another good issue and DC is going a great job with this classic comic character, so lets see what’s next in this story!

Peter Cannon Thunderbolt # 5  ***
Released in 1993     Cover Price $1.25     DC Comics     # 5 of 12

Krater The Demolishing Man is a new super villain who is looking for a hero to beat up and even kill and he rules out Superman, Batman, The Flash and Elongated Man and after seeing the paper he sets his sights on Thunderbolt to build his name on. Meanwhile Peter Cannon and Cairo DeFrey are out on her yacht talking about their crazy lives as well as their blooming relationship, and then start to head in as they have a press conference coming up to showcase his Tibetan artifacts. We then join Mr. Wheeler and his mobsters in a meeting and they call for a kill or be killed warfare. The press conference goes well as the press only wanted to chat about Evila and not the exhibit and Peter and Cairo go their separate ways as she has work to do, Peter meets up with Tabu and they talk about the mystery of Evila and what she knows. Meanwhile Anne-Marie is out for lunch with a friend at a fast food burger joint when Krater attacks and is screaming for the head of Thunderbolt! Meanwhile The Crusader stops a hostage situation and take down the drug pushers who were responsible, while back at the Museum Peter and Tabu watches on TV as Krater calls out the hero while rampaging in the streets. Thunderbolt shows up and the pair fight with Krater showing his power comes from a force field he is able to put into place before he can be punched! But with the help of the mascot at the burger joint Thunderbolt is able to place the mascots costume head over Krater and beat him down, and with that he is arrested with the help of the Special Unit police and Thunderbolt is thanked and starting to be respected by the London police. We show that Andreas Havoc is mad when he finds out that Thunderbolt is back and fighting crime again as he truly thought that the defeat had broken him all those years back. In the end Peter Cannon meets back up with Cairo DeFrey and the two flirt as on the subway a man is killed by an unknown attacker.

This fifth issue shows that Peter Cannon is back and while having a slight issue still by almost being killed is pretty confortable with being hero Thunderbolt again and knows that while he does not have superpowers he does have skill and the heart to do the right thing and protect those who can not protect themselves. Thunderbolt also shows that if his highly skilled hand to hand combat force don’t work he has a cleaver mind to problem solve and to over come the threat at hand. Tabu is clearly both proud of his friend as well as disappointed in his friend as he feels that he still has fear of defeat and is hiding behind a false wall of heroism. Reporter Anne-Marie who has a message to give to Peter Cannon, but after an awkard run in with Cairo and being in the middle of a super villain attack she has not had the chance. I also want to say I think Thunderbolt made a big mistake in his fight with Krater as he shouts out Anne-Marie’s name and I think she will link that he is Peter Cannon! Cairo DeFrey is trying so hard to flirt and get Peter Cannon hooked, but I don’t trust her as she seems like she is playing games and has a very sinister side. Andreas Havoc is 100% the youngster who was burnt who thought he should be the chosen one, and it shows that he stole scrolls from the monks and now its clear that he himself is or at least sent Trydan. And our issues main villain is Krater a man who got his powers from a bomb that went off in the DC universe and allows him to use a force field as protection as well as a way to cause destruction, but once Thunderbolt figures out his powers he is no threat and is easily brought down. The one downside that this issue more then others have shown is that events that are spoken about take place in other comics from DC and that causes you to not get the full story of what they are talking about at times, a shame really…but all comics do it even at Sparkle Comics we have done it. The end of the issue also alerts us that another “super” villain type is in London and I am sure he as well will be looking for Thunderbolt’s blood! Its crazy to think that in only five issue we have been introduced to so many villains, lets count them down Evila, Tekk, Krater, Andreas Havoc, Mr. Wheeler, Victor Cypher and I am telling you Cairo DeFrey will be a baddy by the end of this series! The cover for this issue is pretty good and the art by Mike Collins is great like before. This issue of Thunderbolt has lots of action and as well moves the story along and is a solid 90’s DC Comic series. Lets see what issue 6 that is the half way mark for the series has in store for us.

Peter Cannon Thunderbolt # 6  ***
Released in 1993     Cover Price $1.25     DC Comics     # 6 of 12

Peter Cannon is having a terrible nightmare that has many of his villains as well as his Lama, and he gets a clue of the armor Trydan is wearing looks very much like old armor from England. When he wakes up he talks with Tabu and they start their fight training, that is until Cairo shows up at their apartment flat and is looking for a lunch date. While Peter gets ready Cairo confronts Tabu about not liking her and tries to use her charm to tell him she cares for Peter. Meanwhile Tekk takes down two of Mr. Wheelers mobsters as they head to collect protection money who is now under the protection of Tekk employers the Scorpio family! Also on a London highway a crash frees a super villain called Shard a monster looking man who’s body is made from shards of glass! While on a walk Peter and Cairo are interrupted by Anne-Marie and her newspaper friends, as Cairo leaves after getting an emergency call Anne-Marie talks about her need to cover Thunderbolt when a radio message goes out saying the Special Unit Police need the help of Thunderbolt and all break away to get to the scene requested. Meanwhile we learn that Mr. Wheeler hired Mac The Knife to kill the man on the train, and that Mac is a gun for hire who will kill anyone if the price is right. Meanwhile after busting some more criminals The Crusader goes to a local pub and is having a drink when they get the news of Shard and the cops calling on Thunderbolt for help, the other people in the pub cheer and egg on The Crusader to head down their and show the world the Britain has the best superheroes…and in anger he agrees. Thunderbolt shows up to the highway and the place Shard was set free and he is holding hostages and proves he is super dangerous as just his touch shreds skin and Thunderbolt must use a metal door from a truck in order to hit this baddy, once knocking Shard down he saves some hostages but while doing so the villain us able to sneak attack the hero and hit him from behind leaving him on the ground hurt.

This sixth issue’s plot has Peter Cannon dealing with his bad dreams of defeat, his awkward relationship with Cairo, his mistake of talking to Anne-Marie as Thunderbolt during his fight with Krater in the last issue, and of course his want to be the hero that London needs. As Thunderbolt he is finding that he is way more stronger and skilled then he ever thought and also seems to be getting weird powers he don’t understand like moving things with only a thought. I like that we get that Tabu does not trust Cairo as he thinks that something is off with her and that she is using his friend for some kind of gain, and at this point in the series I don’t think he is wrong as something about her is off as she seems to always be rushing off after phone calls and other emergencies. This issue we also get a look at the backstory of Inspector James Flint who we learned use to work for Mr. Wheeler and that is why he is placed on the Special Unit as they don’t want him near the old crime family he once worked for as they think he could go back, very sad for him as he is a good cop and they know it, but his past is keeping him from reaching his dream jobs. Plus I am starting to think that reporter Anne-Marie is starting to get a crush on Thunderbolt and while she does want to interview him for the paper, she also wants to get to know him…oddly enough did I miss something as she also does not tell Peter the message from Maude Grymes when she had the chance! We see that Mac The Knife a killer for hire is in London and took his first job from Mr. Wheeler, but also lets him know that if someone hires him to kill him he will take the job if the money is right…in other words he is a scumbag who money talks to. And Shard is super dangerous as his whole body is made of sharp glass and just a light touch will cut deep, and to top it off he has a crazed mind and don’t mind hurting, killing and scaring. The cover is pretty awesome and the art by Mike Collins is great as always. Oh man I should also say I like the opening nightmare part as well as it adds more things for us readers to think about as well as for Peter to try and uncover. Lets see what issue seven has in store for us and see if DC and Mike Collins can keep up the great work on this series.

Peter Cannon Thunderbolt # 7  ***
Released in 1993     Cover Price $1.25     DC Comics     # 7 of 12

Thunderbolt wakes up bleeding and hurt of the highway and just in time as Shard is about to go in for the kill and he is able to dodge the attack. With the help of people on the highway that were hostages Thunderbolt is able to clear his head for a bit and get Shard to chase him and allowing the people to get to safety. Meanwhile Andreas Havoc is fuming over the return of Thunderbolt and with his magic he learned from the stolen scrolls he brings Evila to his castle and alerts her if they work together they can stop Thunderbolt once and for all. Thunderbolt is having a hard time with Shard, as he cannot touch him without being cut, but with his newly discovered mind powers he is able to use metal from the cars that crashed on the highway and capture him. Meanwhile Mr. Wheeler buries his son and is ready for all out war, while a Tibetan Monk shows up at Peter Cannon’s home in America looking for his help and is sent to London by the old woman watching over the home. The Crusaders arrives at the Highway after Shards been defeated and this enrages the hero as he thinks he is being made a full by the American hero. In the end Peter Cannon arrives back at his apartment in London and gets a visit from a Government worker who informs him to keep his opinions on China to himself or something might happen and worse he gets a call from Cairo just as armored forces show up to take her hostage!

In this issue Thunderbolt has to face and enemy he cannot use his hand-to-hand combat skills to bring down and must use his newly discovered mental powers to bring the baddy down! The issues plot also shows that Andreas Havoc is only helping Victor Cypher because he thought Thunderbolt was gone from the hero business, and he also clearly does not really care about helping him. We also get that something bad is going down in Tibet as a Monk has travled very long and far to find him to get help, we also see that The Crusader is mad that an American hero is saving the day and taking away his glory of being a superhero and we see that Mr. Wheeler is now 100% ready to make those who killed his son pay! Peter Cannon aka Thunderbolt knows that that he is even more strong and skilled then he ever knew as not only can he knock out a villain with his kicks and punches now he can use his mind and move object! I am not sure how I feel about Thunderbolt having the powers of “Carrie” as I liked him as the classic style hero who did not have superpowers. Cairo DeFrey has found herself once more on the end of a plot that will have her kidnapped and this time the people coming for her seem way more with it and better armed! Not sure now if I am right about Cairo DeFrey as at first I thought she was up to something sinister, but now I am not sure and think that she might be a secret agent or working with some very powerful people. Shard was a pretty cool bad guy and was super dangerous, and he was only defeated when Thunderbolt used his “Carrie” powers on him. I am interested in what The Monk is needing help with, but if I had to guess I would say it has to do with Andreas Havoc and his evil ways, and let me not forget what terrible plan does Andreas Havoc have in mind now that he is teaming with Evila! As always this issue is keeping me entertained and showcasing that not all heroes have to have superpowers…oh wait DC now did give him powers…but the cover is pretty good and eye catching and the interior art by Mike Collins is great as always. Lets see what issue eight has in store and find out the answer on who is kidnapping Cairo.

Peter Cannon Thunderbolt # 8  **1/2
Released in 1993     Cover Price $1.25     DC Comics     # 8 of 12

At the office of Cairo DeFrey the cops lead by Inspector James Flint are looking into her kidnapping and he speaks to Peter Cannon who is as well there as he was on the phone when the attacked happened. While people are being questioned Peter’s hidden mental powers flare up and let him see the act of the kidnapping happen and learns the Scorpio Mob is who has done it as he hears that name! Meanwhile Evila and Andreas Havoc discuss a plan that will get ride of Peter Cannon aka Thunderbolt once and for all as they both hate him and need him out of the way. Meanwhile after the cops have left Peter and Tabu get into an argument, as Peter wants to change into Thunderbolt and save Cairo and his friend Tabu says he can not use the ancient powers for his own personal interest, and this fight leaves Peter walking to the buildings roof were he sees the armed men placing Cairo into a helicopter and he just in times jumps and hides on the helicopter to find out where it goes. Meanwhile the Justice League Europe team is alerted to the kidnapping and Green Lantern takes notice when Thunderbolt is mentioned as he remembers helping him some years back from dying, while across town a shadowy figure under the disguise of working for the Government of England gives The Crusader an order to fight and beat Thunderbolt in a fare fight in order to prove England has the best home grown heroes and they don’t need the Americans help. Peter Cannon once they helicopter arrives at the hideout changes into Thunderbolt and takes out the kidnappers one by one until he and Cairo come face to face and she is happy to see the masked hero and alerts him that she knows he really is Peter Cannon and gives him a kiss. Also The Monk is now on his way to England to find Thunderbolt and alert him to what help the temple needs.

Well Peter Cannons secret of being Thunderbolt is out of the bag as the woman he loves has figured it out super quick! The issues plot is very simple Thunderbolt follows kidnappers to get his lady love back and then throw in some drama with the police, JLE and Crusader and you have this issue in a nutshell. Thunderbolt is a hero who is now also torn as his training says that he should only use his powers and skills to benefit and protect mankind and that he should never put personal issues on his hero to do list, but he feels different as he knows that he can save the life of a woman he cares about. Thunderbolt is also very confused over his new mental powers, as they only seem to appear when he has extreme stress or anger. Tabu is so stuck on the ways of the Temple that at times he seems to forget what it is to be human and only cares about rules. Inspector James Flint is trying to put pieces together like a puzzle as he wants to solve why Scorpio has moved into town and why Thunderbolt seems to be around when things turn bad. Cairo DeFrey proves that she is not some weak business woman and has skills of her own to get out of trouble, plus its interesting that she knows Peter is Thunderbolt and makes one wonder did she figure it out on her own or is she working for someone who alerted her to this? Evila and Andreas Havoc’s sinister plan to stop Thunderbolt I am sure will start next issue and by the mindset of those two, I am sure it will be very deadly. The Crusader while a hero is being played for a fool as he is being pushed to be annoyed by Thunderbolt and pressured into a fight for some unknown reason to cause tension between the heroes. I like the idea of a shadowy criminal organization using tricks to turn superheroes against each other as so many heroes have egos and could easily be pushed to turn on each other. Also great to see more cameos from Justice League Europe members as this time around we not only see Green Lantern but also The Flash and Crimson Fox and by the looks of it I think they might get a bigger role in a future issue! The cover is pretty great and has a direct to video action film look to it and the interior art by Mike Collins who is still doing the story as well. Another solid issue that has a few way to long talky parts, but is solid and keeps up the great work of the series and makes me look forward to the next issue.

Peter Cannon Thunderbolt # 9  ***
Released in 1993     Cover Price $1.50     DC Comics     # 9 of 12

Thunderbolt is shocked that Cairo DeFrey knows that he is Peter Cannon and she tells him that she has known sense he saved her on the blimp! As the goons around them start to wake up they make a run for the exit only for them to be cut off by Tekk who wants Cairo. Meanwhile Anne-Marie is looking into the past of Cairo and finds something very interesting that she wants to investigate as well as says she might want to tell Peter Cannon what she has learned, what it is we will have to wait. Tekk and Thunderbolt start to fight and are going hand-to-hand, when Cairo watches she is likes that two super-beings are fighting over her and says to herself at some point she will tell them they are on the same side! While at the store of Maude Grymes she gets a visit by the wizard Arion The Immortal who warns her not to meddle in the world of Peter Cannon, but she tells him she knows what she is doing! As Thunderbolt and Tekk are fighting The Justice League Europe (Green Lantern, Power Girl, The Flash, Crimson Fox and Elongated Man) show up as they are looking for the kidnapped Cairo as well and join and help Thunderbolt in the fight, but finally Cairo alerts them that Tekk is her bodyguard and was their to rescue her as well. As The JLE and Thunderbolt are cleaning up the area after Cairo leaves for home questions start to pop up as Inspector James Flint also shows up and backs up the feeling that something is not right with this kidnapping. We then see Mr. Wheeler about to pull in and being mad as its clear he hired the goons to get her and at Cairo’s office she tells Tekk that its time for them to ruin Mr. Wheeler and to get ride of him and his men. While Evila and Andreas Havoc use a spell and bring Dinosaurs to London and our heroes have to rush off to try and stop the rampage. Meanwhile Anne-Marie is waiting for Peter at his apartment and in China a superhuman being is beating up protesters.

The plots of this issue are coming at the reader fast and hard as we learn so much and get new mysteries shoved our way…and were to start! I think the biggest news is Cairo DeFrey being the head of Scorpio and while acting like a sweet businesswoman she is really a calculated mobster who puts hits out, has her goons strong-arm small businesses for protection money as well has Tekk a super villain under her control. I knew it all along that Cairo was not to be trusted as she always seemed to act a little off and very sneaky, worse thing is that she knows Peter Cannons secret and could try and use it for her own gain. Tekk is shown to be Cairo’s chuffer, bodyguard and muscle and almost seems to enjoy the bad things he is sent to do as his suit gives him big powers. We also see that Anne-Marie is digging deep into who Cairo really is and it’s clear that she has found out just how corrupt she is and wants to warn Peter as she knows he is getting way to close to her, plus poor Maude Grymes is in trouble with other magical beings for trying to deliver a message to Peter…that still has not been delivered. Plus it appears that the JLE and James Flint have also started to catch on that Cairo is a wolf in sheep clothing and are starting to question her…now if only Peter Cannon would catch on. I love that Andreas Havoc and Evila’s idea to cause issues to try and defeat Thunderbolt was to let dinosaurs loose in the city, its like they read Jurassic Park and got ideas. And one new mystery we get is who the heck is the muscle in China that is beating up the protestors and when will he tackle Thunderbolt as we knows it has to happen. Oh and I should also say that Mr. Wheeler has made a big mistake as he has been marked as a dead man now and by trying to kidnap Cairo he has also doomed his whole crew. The cover for this issue is well done and eye catching and the interior art by Mike Collins is still A+ 90’s DC Comic work. Another great issue and I can not wait to read the next issue as we are getting to the end of this series and things are starting to wrap up.

Peter Cannon Thunderbolt # 10  **1/2
Released in 1993     Cover Price $1.50     DC Comics     # 10 of 12

Thunderbolt and the JLE are rounding up the dinosaurs that are rampaging in London and are trying to keep the people safe as well as the creatures as they know they are just scared and not causing the chaos on purpose. While at Peter’s apartment Anne-Marie is telling Tabu about what she found and the message she was to deliver that all points to Cairo using and lying to him, and as they talk the monk who is Master Tsong arrives. As Thunderbolt and the JLE are tangling with the dinosaurs, he shares that he thinks that this mess was created by Andreas Havoc who is in turn being played by Evila who wants his power stone as she knows its true power and plans on using it against those who cross her. Meanwhile all around London Scorpio is attacking and shutting down all of Mr. Wheelers businesses and the war is on and gearing towards the end. The Crusader ends up joining the fight and helps round up the dinosaurs and they all watch as Thunderbolt uses his mind powers to bring down the massive T-Rex and his fellow heroes are impressed. As the JLE leaves Thunderbolt is attacked from behind by Crusader who in turn is attacked by someone from behind as Evila and Andreas Havoc are mad as they were behind making Crusader turn on Thunderbolt due to rage. We find out that a Checkmate Knight is the one behind the attack on Crusaders and has showed up with both heroes knocked out to Peter’s apartment and informs Thunderbolt about who is behind sending The Crusader and that’s Andreas Havoc and Master Tsong backs that up and says he must come back to Tibet in order to fight a man who killed the last Thunderbolt!

This issue is pretty fun even though most of the time is spent with the heroes rounding up dinosaurs like they are cattle. In this issue Peter Thunderbolt learns that he is a man that is neck deep in all types of trouble as he has a target on his head from Andreas Havoc, his lady love is a crime boss who has been a terror to so many, he has angered England’s hero The Crusader who has been pushed to attack him and he needs to now go to Tibet and fight a person who has killed the last Thunderbolt! In other words Thunderbolt has lots of hero work to do to make things safe for not only himself but everyone around him. Evila and Andreas Havoc while they are working together are clearly not friends as Evila has an idea of turning on him in order to steal the power stone to use in her own ways. Mr. Wheeler is loosing everything as he not only had his son murdered by his rivals but now all his crime empire is falling. The powerful fighter in China is Dorje and it sounds like he does not want to go to Tibet and I am guessing he is the one that killed the last Thunderbolt. Cairo DeFrey is truly an evil woman who is given orders to ruin and take lives and all the while is playing the victim and sweet person, she is a true mobster who has bad motives. The Justice League Europe are very helpful as they make the dinosaur capture way easier and even offer Thunderbolt a place on the team, plus seeing The Flash and the others in action is always a fun DC Comic reading experience. The Crusader has to feel like a tool now that he knows he has been played for a fool and pushed to attack a fellow hero by a criminal organization. Cover is great and fitting for the time and Mike Collins art his great as always. Like before a solid issue of Thunderbolt and really does prove that old heroes can find new life generations after their final issues. Oh and I still have to say I still am not a fan of Thunderbolts mental powers, as it makes him feel like an X-Men member.

Peter Cannon Thunderbolt # 11  ***
Released in 1993     Cover Price $1.50     DC Comics     # 11 of 12

Thunderbolt is gearing up to fight with Andreas Havoc and is surprised when he finds that he will have his own help going into this battle as Tabu, Power Girl, Anne-Marie, The Crusader, Master Tsong and Checkmate Knights all come to his aid. At first Thunderbolt is a little lukewarm on letting Crusader come along that is until he sees that the hero is upset that he has been played a fool and wants revenge. As The Checkmate Knights fight against Havoc’s men Thunderbolt, Power Girl and Crusader storm his castle and things start to look good for our heroes as Evila has her handsful with Power Girl and Crusader and Thunderbolt is holding his own against Andreas Havoc…that is until he gets blasted with a powerful energy blast that knocks Thunderbolt from the castle and we see that his attacker is Trydan the man who almost killed him years back! Thunderbolt finds his inner strength and uses all his skills to take down Trydan once and for all, only to fin the man in the suit was a drooling mindless fool, and as Thunderbolt starts to fight again with Andreas Havoc he learns that Trydan was just a paid assassin in a stolen suit from Lexcorp and that his brain was fried and he was a mindless tool of destruction. The fighting is going back and fourth and the Checkmate Knights get the call to pull back and return back to base, as this happens Tabu and Master Tsong rush into the castle and cause a distraction that allows Power Girl to grab the power stone and for them also to get the stolen scrolls…Thunderbolt uses the stone and his powers to transport himself and his friends to Tibet as Evila and Andreas Havoc stay in the castle that is now crumbling. In Tibet Thunderbolt and friends are by the monastery and find that it is under attack by a Chinese soldiers as Power Girl and Crusader attack the soldiers the others watch over the power stone as Thunderbolt rushes to check on the Lama only to find that he is face to face with Dorje, and worse Thunderbolt learns that Dorje is the real Thunderbolt who never dies those years back. Also during this time Mr. Wheeler heads to the Scoprio base and finds that his own right hand man has turned on him and that Cairo has hired Mac The Knife to put a dagger in his back!

So this is a bombshell as we learn that Peter Cannon has been living a lie for all these years and he is not the true Thunderbolt and protector of the order as his predecessor never really died and is back this time helping China to find the mystic powerful items that are hidden in the temple. So Thunderbolt as we know him is not the Tibetan hero we have followed, but he is a hero and a chosen one for sure as look at all he has been able to do and learn and I feel that Dorje is a man who at one point who was chosen to be the protector who now has turned his back on the job and is using his powers and skills to help with greed. Its great to see Power Girl and The Crusader lending their powers to help take down the evil magic of Andreas Havoc as both of their lives were in danger. And for that matter good on the Checkmate Knights as well for all their work in the battle. As for Andreas Havoc and Evila they are powerful and strong and if not for being distracted for a short amount of time they could have easily won the battle with our heroes…but I also feel that the defeat of Andreas Havoc, Trydan and Evila is very rushed feeling as they are the main bad guys we have spent so much time with, and now its changed to Dorje with just one issue to go. Poor Mr. Wheeler is in a bad way as it’s clear that the odds are against him and his time is running out as Cairo and her goons have his number. And speaking of Cairo she has surrounded herself with not only heavy armed foot solders but also skilled killers like Tekk and Mac The Knife…she is dangerous and I will guess will get what’s coming to her in the next issue. News lady Anne-Marie is getting the news story of her life as she has been along for the ride as Thunderbolt clashed with Andreas and also has seen China attacking a temple in Tibet! This is a great issue but again I do feel as if things are being rushed to have an end as they had to know that the series was being canceled and that they only had two issue to wrap it all up. The cover is great and showcases our heroes and villains and as always Mike’s work in the interior art is good stuff. Well let’s see how the DC Comic series of Thunderbolt ends as we are going to look at the twelfth and final issue.

Peter Cannon Thunderbolt # 12  **1/2
Released in 1993    Cover Price $1.50     DC Comics     # 12 of 12

Peter Cannon faces off with Dorje who sees Tabu holding the power stone and informs them all that he wants the stone as he needs to give it to China, and Peter can not allow this and fights Dorje who is older but more skilled and is showing his fighting skills. Tabu and Master Tsong watch in shock as Tabu is confused as he has pledged his life to help the true Thunderbolt, but he is best friends with Peter! Anne-Marie takes action and grabs the power stone and runs off with it trying to keep it safe and out of the hands of Dorje only to by accident giving it to Evila who is disguised at Power Girl and Andreas Havoc is also there who is now mad that Dorje is still alive as this makes his war and feud with Peter Cannon void! The Crusader and Power Girl arrive in the temple and after hitting Evila from behind the power stone falls to the floor as a fight between Thunderbolt and his friends against Evila with Andreas Havoc as well as Dorje who is fighting them all in order to get the stone. During the fight Andreas Havoc is thrown against a wall leaving him brain damaged as Dorje gets the stone and uses its power to kill Evila as well as himself in order to keep the temple and all inside it safe from her want to become the ruler, all the heroes gather as he tells them of his past years of being missing. With the fight over Peter Cannon is Thunderbolt again and the Lama sends Power Girl and The Crusader home and then sends Anne-Marie and Tabu to Peter’s apartment…as for Thunderbolt is gets a change of outfit and is sent to the Scorpio base as he needs to have words with Cairo. Once at the base he finds Mr. Wheeler who dies in front of him from his stab wounds and has to fight Tekk who uses all his power to try and stop the hero, but thanks to water and electricity Tekk fails and is left knocked out. In the end Thunderbolt faces Cairo and she alerts him that she is related to Evila and that she just wants power and order and begs Thunderbolt to join her, he rejects her offer and walks out telling her goodbye and both are heart broken as good and evil can never find love.

The final issue of Thunderbolt does a pretty great job of wrapping up all our characters and stories and allows now Peter Cannon to be Thunderbolt and not have to 100% follow the teachings of the Lama and temple as he is not the reborn spirit of the passed warrior…he is just his own warrior. Thunderbolt learns so much about himself that all his powers and skills are unlocked by his own will and training and that he is a hero no matter what label is placed on him. It’s also clear that he will always do what is right and fight on the side of good and that his friend Tabu will always be his pal and help him in life and in heroism. You have to feel bad for Thunderbolt as well when he learned that the old Thunderbolt is still alive and making his whole past being a lie, plus he has to face heart break as he must break it off with Cairo a woman he loves. To be honest Dorje the old Thunderbolt does nothing for me and seems like a waste to the story as his turn from being apart of the raiding Chinese forces to becoming the Temple hero again before his death seemed super cheesy. Evila finally meets her end thanks to the power stone and poor Andreas Havoc is left in a coma just like Trydan and both will spend their lives at the Temple in Tibet. Mr. Wheeler meets his end at the end of a knife and its cause of his own pride and want to fight that leads him to his death, well and the fact his own friend set him up! I do feel that Inspector James Flint does not have any real payout and only shows up for a second in this final issue to tell Wheeler’s men to start looking for new work, again his story seems rushed and like a wasted character. Anne-Marie is clearly a reporter who is stronger then she thinks and is clearly in love with Peter Cannon so who knows what could have been with those two. The series did do a great job of using other heroes from the DC Universe as the Justice League Europe, Checkmate Knights and The Crusader all seem important and add to the story as it unfolds. Cairo DeFrey is a killer and a woman who craves power who is from the same bloodline as Evila and while bad, I don’t think she sees her actions as evil as she just wants to lead and make the world follow her order. Mike Collins who did the interior art and the story for this series did fantastic work and really did bring a classic comic hero into modern times and made Thunderbolt fit right into the DC Universe, he also added onto the characters legend and story and did a great job of also using his classic rouges gallery while adding new baddies into the mix. It’s a shame that this series only lasted 12 issues as it was some of the better stuff DC was doing at the time with their smaller time heroes. From what I gathered low sales is what got the book canceled and Thunderbolt from here would be apart of other comics like Justice League Europe. The cover for this issue is also really cool and for some reason reminds me of Batman or even The Phantom. I have to say that I truly enjoyed Peter Cannon Thunderbolt and think that if you enjoy classic comic heroes and have not check it out yet, you should as its well done and while flawed in spots (looking at you mind powers) it holds a great classic comic feel. Check out the artwork bellow to see the style of Mike Collins.

If I worked for DC Comics around 1993 as a writer and Peter Cannon Thunderbolt was thrown my way in order to breath new life into the character after his final issue was released. I would have kept him in London for awhile and have him join The Justice League Europe for a short awhile and would have had him and Power Girl hitting it off and even dating. During this time Thunderbolt would have mastered his mental powers and this would have elevated his superpower statues, and the JLE would also hire Tabu to work their headquarters to keep all their missions in order as well as to alert members to crises. But Thunderbolt and Tabu would leave London and the JLE after Power Girl and he split up as he is still in love with Cairo DeFrey who has been spotted in New York causing him to return home to find her, and here is were I would change him up and take a really chance with him as when in New York and with his new more powerful mind powers I would have Cairo make a deal with the returning Evila and together they place a classic curse of Thunderbolt and turn him into a raging madman who is running amok in the streets and is attacking innocent people and as well as doing battle with Superheroes like one time friend Green Lantern, Batman, Hawkman, Plastic Man, Green Arrow and even Superman. I would then have Dr. Fate along with Zatanna be the ones who break the curse of Evila as well as end his mental mind powers of Thunderbolt and from there I would write him out for awhile by having him be placed in a asylum. After a year or two away I would bring Peter Cannon Thunderbolt back as a skilled fighter normal hero who has to earn the trust of the people and his fellow heroes. And from there I would just have Thunderbolt appear in other comics as a guest hero and would still be doing that to this day.

Thunderbolt over the years has been dusted off by other comic companies with his latest bigger run being with Dynamite Comics 2012 and later 2019 and would bring the hero into modern times. But for me I think he should have stayed put in the DC Comics universe. But DC is such a mess in modern times and are cutting comics, creators and even making a push for digital comics so in other words they are a shell of a company and sadly have been ran wrong for many years now and with AT&T owning them and not caring about print comic books I am not sure what their fate holds in the future. But lets not harp on the fate of DC Comics and why they let Thunderbolt slip from their fingers as for my next update I will be taking a look at another Horror Host for the celebration of the Horror Host Hall Of Fame being around for 10 years as I will take a look at Indiana’s own Baron Von Wolfstein! So until next time read a DC Comic or three, watch a superhero film or two and as always support your local Horror Host! See you next time for a trip to Wolfstein Manor.

From Horror Movie To Horror Comic: Snakes On A Plane

In the year 2006 horror cinema was alive and well with many films hitting theaters as well as video rental shelves, and all styles of horror were covered from slashers to horror comedies and of course the horror action thriller had its fair share of releases. I mean hell, even I released my shot on video film The Sadness that year! And one film that was released that year had a whirlwind of online press, a catchy name, a big name star attached and was an animal run amok action, thriller horror film, and I am sure you guessed that I am talking about Snakes Of A Plane! And back when the film was released in 2006 comic company WildStorm that was a branch off DC Comics who is owned by Warner Brothers who owns New Line Cinema released a two issue mini series based on the film and that’s what we will be reviewing here for this From Horror Movie To Horror Comic update. So if you are ready to take the frightful flight of your life that not only has Samuel L. Jackson on board but also a whole lot of snakes, so stock up on anti-venom and let’s take to the skies of Horror Comics.

Lets first take a look at the Snakes that took over a plane and killed numerous passengers that was in their site. The Snakes are of many breeds that include King Cobras, Rattlesnakes, Pit Vipers, Coral Snakes, Pythons among other snake species and are in high numbers on the plane. The Snakes are very sneaky and can hide in small areas as well as use said small areas to travel around and target their prey as they attack not only singly but also at times attack in packs making them even more dangerous. The snakes are made to be super aggressive by pheromones and this makes them act as if anyone in their sight is really the enemy and drives them mad. The Snakes have many different ways of dealing death with many of them having venomous bites that can leave people dead in a matter of minutes to hours while others will squeeze and devour those foolish humans that could not escape. The snakes are just animals that have been made to be aggressive and because they are just living creatures they can be killed by any normal means such as being shot, burned with fire, cut and stabbed by a knife and even smashed. And because they are just creatures does mean they are not as deadly as some of the killers and creatures we have chatted about on a From Horror Movie To Horror Comic update, but with that said they still are very deadly and can make those poor souls stuck with them on a plane meet the Reaper.

So now that we have talked about the killer snakes from the film and their death dealing ways its time that we talk about the film they are from. As always I will be taking the films plot from out friends at IMDB and I then will write about the films production as well as my thoughts on the film. So if you are ready lets take a Plane trip with some very dangerous snakes.

Snakes On A Plane (2006)

While practicing motocross in Hawaii, Sean Jones witnesses the brutal murder of an important American prosecutor by the powerful mobster Eddie Kim. FBI agent Neville Flynn persuades him to testify against Eddie in Los Angeles. They board the red-eye Flight 121 of Pacific Air, occupying the entire first-class section. However, Eddie dispatches hundred of different species of snakes airborne with a time-operated device in the luggage to release the snakes into the flight with the intent of crashing the plane. Neville and the passengers must struggle with the snakes to survive.”

At University of Pittsburgh back in 1992 an administrator by the name of David Dalessandro was working on a film script that he called “Venom” that was originally about a brown tree snake loose on a plane before becoming more about tons of snakes loose on a plane that caused issues for the passengers. He shopped the film around for years and its rumored that by 1995 over 30 Studios rejected the script! In 1999 he finally found a producer at Paramount took interest in the script and New Line Cinema took over the production, that’s right the studio called The House That Freddy Built was now involved in “Venom”. When originally looking for a director Ronny Yu was on tap and from early on actor Samuel L. Jackson signed to be a lead in the film because he loved these type of films as a kid and thought the title was great that was changed to “Snakes On A Plane” after a brief time of it going to be called “Pacific Air Flight 121” and Jackson was not having it and made New Line change it back to the title that was getting tons of internet buzz. The film brought on David R. Ellis to direct with John Gutierrez and John Heffernan coming in to touch up the script. The casting of Samuel L. Jackson also attracted a few more names that fans knew including Julianna Margulies, Nathan Phillips, Sunny Mabrey, Kenan Thompson, Rachel Blanchard, Lin Shaye, David Koechner, Tom Butler and Kevin McNulty to name a few and the buzz from bloggers made New Line Cinema think they had something very big on their hands even ordering days of reshoots in order to turn the film from PG-13 to rated R thinking that they were giving the online world what they wanted. The film opened on August 18, 2006 and was the # 1 film for that weekend but quickly dropped and under performed at the US Box Office only doing $34,020,814.00 on a budget of $33 million for New Line Cinema and causing it to be one of their biggest misses for a Cult Thriller Action Horror Film in some time. While the film did ok with critics and fans the film just did not draw at the theater and it was over all a bomb with it really building a cult following once on Home Media. This was an example of a Hollywood studio trusting the online community and it backfiring. On a side note it’s said that at a screening of the film in Arizona someone let two rattlesnakes loose, lucky for moviegoers no one was bitten or hurt. The film was the # 93 grossing film of the year and did beat out such other Horror films as The Decent, The Wicker Man, Stay Alive, The Black Dahlia, Pulse, An American Haunting, Black Christmas, See No Evil, Slither, The Return, Turistas, BloodRayne, Basic Instinct 2, Hard Candy and Night Of The Living Dead 3-D showing that while it was not a hit, it still beat out some great Horror Titles.

Snakes On A Plane was one of those films that when released I was so annoyed with as all my friends would go around in bad Samuel L. Jackson impersonations talking about “Being Sick Of Mother F’N Snakes On This Mother F’N Plane” and it made me want to stay clear of seeing the film at the theater, so I was one of those who did not watch on the big screen. And to be honest it was one that it took me a very long time to get around to watching as it was not high on my radar of must see films, and while it would be on at friends houses during hanging out I never did truly sit down and pay attention to it, that was until 2021 when I made myself sit down and watch it on DVD that I truly got to soak the film in. And after watching the film I found it to be a fun silly rides that was filled with your normal style disaster movie characters, lots of CGI snakes attacking and was a more modern day animal runs amok film set on a plane that gave the film a Closter phobic feel. I think Samuel Jackson is great in his role as FBI Agent Neville Flynn and plays the role pretty normal for almost the whole film and does not yell and scream his lines until the end and seeing Julianna Margulies as flight attendant Claire Miller was cool as well as seeing here in a fright flick again after the 2002 film Ghost Ship. But while I found it to be a good watch I also did have some issues with the film as the CGI Snakes look terrible and in most shots ruin the scene with how bad they standout, and the cussing comes into play at the very tail end of the film and feels tacked on by New Line Cinema to get the R rating and to play up on people wanting to hear Samuel L. Jackson drop the F-Bomb. Plus we have the films bad guy Eddie Kim who beats a man to death with a baseball bat and then also is the mastermind of releasing the snakes on a plane that kills man gets his justice off screen. I would also say I can see why it dropped so hard after opening weekend in theaters as the hype train that was around the film built it up so big in the eyes of viewers who were a little underwhelmed once seeing the film and that letdown word of mouth helped it tank. New Line Cinema use to be a great company for Horror Films and they use to take some chances under the run of Bob Shaye, but now under the watch of AT&T they are a shell of what they are in the world of Horror with only The Conjuring universe being the bright star. Over all Snakes On A Plane is a silly movie with a silly title that was very fitting for the time of Horror at the cinema.

Now that we have talked about The Snakes on the plane and the film about them being on said plane I think its time we get to the two issue comic mini series that is about it all. And once more proves that any and all Horror Movies or even films with Horror elements can and should be turned into a comic book. I would like to think Game Swap Kettering for having these comics in stock and would like to also remind you that I grade these comics on a star scale of 1 to 4 and am looking for how well the comics stay to the source material, it’s entertainment value and it’s art and story. So if you are ready lets see if we can survive these killer snakes.

Snakes Of A Plane # 1  **
Released in 2006     Cover Price $2.99     WildStorm    # 1 of 2

Sean Jones is riding his dirt bike around Hawaii when he witnesses the murder of a Prosecutor from LA at the hands of feared and violent gangster Eddie Kim who ends the mans life with a baseball bat, and Sean is able to escape just in time as Kim and his men spot him leaving and track him down thanks to DNA he left behind on a energy drink can. Eddie Kim wants Sean dead and sends two very dangerous goons to his apartment to put a bullet in his brain, but lucky for Sean also in his apartment is F.B.I Agent Neville Flynn who makes out the hired killers and talks Sean into going to LA in order to testify against Kim to send the crime lord to prison for life. The plane is flight 121 and crewmembers aboard are Tiffany, Ken, Grace and Claire who is on her last flight as she is leaving to become a lawyer. The pilots on this plane are Captain McKeon and Rick and its also filled with some odd passengers like rapper Three Gs and his bodyguards Troy and Big Leroy, socialite Mercedes and her pet dog Mary-Kate, Young kids Curtis and Tommy, Chen a kick boxer, mother Maria and her infant baby daughter Isabella and a handful of more and for all of them they now have to ride coach as first class is now taken over by the F.B.I as Sean is escorted by Agent Neville and Agent John Sanders on the flight and that area gives them also a phone in order to contact to Special Agent Hank Harris who is working the Kim case. As the passengers get the news of their seating class change they are also all given leis and welcomed aboard. During the flight a clock counts down and once at zero tons of angry venomous snakes are let loose from boxes in the luggage hold! A young couple having sex in the bathroom are the first humans to die from the snakes bite and then the Captain while fixing a issue in the belly of the plane falls victim, the snakes even kill a poor cat who was in the hold! When Rick finds that Captain he calls for the help of Agents Neville and Sanders and they all think he has past from a heart attack. As Rick takes over the flight all hell breaks loose as the Snakes come out to play their deadly game both in the cockpit as well as the rest of the plane!

The first issue of Snakes On A Plane is a very quick read and sticks pretty well to the film its based on making some changes mostly in the way of flow, and by that I mean it moves at a very faster pace and lands us pretty much in the middle of the films plot in just one issue. They speed up the boarding of the plane and cut much of the interactions that the passengers have with each other as well as even the moments of friendship that the crew have with one another, and we also skip much of the moments of Sean and Agent Neville starting up a friendship and talking about surfing and such, plus they get to the snake attacks and invasion of the plane way faster. The major downside to this speed up approach is that I feel they make Claire feel less special and they also don’t quite capture the scary moments of the turbulence and death of the Captain that well. But they do a better job really showing and speaking about just how much of a scumbag Eddie Kim is as he enjoys dealing death and they even talk about how he in the past feed an eyewitness against him to pigs. I also like that Agent Harris is talking about being in a bidding war against a kid for a Billy Idol velvet painting, I would totally buy a Billy Idol velvet paiting. Now that I am writing this I feel that almost all the characters are not flushed out and that hurts the reader to get a bound with any of them, and while the film didn’t do a great job of doing so the comic does even less. Agent Neville Flynn is a guy who is good at his job and wants to bring down Eddie Kim and will do what it takes to protect the states star witness. Sean Jones is a young guy who likes dirt biking and surfing and is caught up in this murder case and is not fully ready for all this danger, but wants to do the right thing has a price is on his head. The snakes are really mad and are dealing out death to anyone in site and by the end are all over the plane ready to attack. None of the other characters really stand out and are hard to talk about. The cover for this comic is very fitting for WildStorm Comics circa 2006 and is eye-catching if you liked the film and the interior art done by Gordon Purcell and is pretty good stuff as he does a good job of capturing the likeness of the actors with out being to specific on their looks. Over all a good issue that was a fun read and as I have stated while the story and characters are condensed I still very much enjoyed the comic, so lets see what issue two is like.

Snakes Of A Plane # 2  *1/2
Released in 2006     Cover Price $2.99    WildStorm    # 2 of 2

The Snakes are now biting passengers and panic is running wild, as Agent Neville armed with a stun gun rushes to coach to try and help people, he tells them to head toward the front of the plane and to try and use baggage to make a wall to keep the snakes in the coach area. During the madness many people are bitten and some die youngster Timmy and Big Leroy are bitten and Agent Sanders is bitten and dies! As the passengers build the wall of bags they are scared and at each others throats, as Rick is worried that the snakes could cause electric issues and cause the plane to crash and Agent Neville has the duty to called Agent Harris to inform him of the attack as well as the death of Sanders. While the bitten and wounded are treated Agent Neville and the others find what they can to use as weapons that include broken bottles, golf clubs and fire extinguisher and get ready to fight off the attacking snakes. Meanwhile in LA a plan is in the works to get snaked expert Dr. Price ready with some anti-venom for those bitten, but Agent Harris finds out that this will be way more hard as each snake has its own cure shot and the serum is harder to get for the snakes that are not from the US. All the passengers rush to first class and come up with the idea to use Mercedes phone camera and send the pictures of the snakes to Dr. Price via email, but as they work on this Rick is bitten by a snake while flying the plane causing it to start to go down! While Claire and Agent Neville try and get the plan back on track, Sean tries to help the people that are being knocked around and things get worse when a giant Python crashes down from a light and an old bitter passenger throws the dog Mary-Kate for the snake to eat, but also finds himself being killed by the massive snake. Once the plane is taken out of the nose dive Rick wakes up and takes over the flying as now Agent Neville has to go to the cargo hold and reseat the planes air and while down there he figures out that the snakes were brought aboard via flowers and as he fights of the snakes Agent Harris in LA finds the mane who used pheromones on the snakes to make them aggressive and also raids his anti-venom case as he is a snake from around the world collector. New gets to Agent Neville that they have the shots ready for them when they land, but things get bad again when Rick this time is dead from multiple snake bites and Agent Neville and bodyguard and video game player Troy have to try and land the plane at LAX! But before they do so Agent Neville has everyone buckle in and then shoots out a plane window that sucks out all the snakes and causes the landing to be even harder, but the pair do so! When they land Sean is attacked by a snake but is once more saved by Agent Neville and all the bitten are given their shots. In the end Agent Neville and Claire start a relationship, Sean is ready to help put Kim behind bars as well as hooks up with Tiffany and Sean and Neville end up going surfing.

The second issue continues to cut and cram as much of the movies plot into the pages of a comic book and to be honest the cuts in this second issue really does take away the Horror and Drama and just delivers a very water downed story with one dimensional characters that as a reader I could not connect with any of them as they had zero personality and even Agent Neville seemed very plan and paint by number like taking away the edge and coolness he had in the film. Many characters that meant something in the film are thrown away and have zero impact to the story like Maria and her baby as well as Grace who gives her life in order to save the baby from the snakes, this was a big moment in the film that is removed for this comic. The drama of some of the passengers freaking out on each other is also removed and so many characters are just wasted background bit players who could have been removed and it would not have affected this comic series. I feel that even the friendship between Agent Neville and Sean is none existent and the love that Neville and Claire build for each other also makes no sense in this mess of a comic. While I enjoyed this first one pretty well this second issue is not as good and for the most part skips around like a ball in a pinball machine. The snakes that are the creatures of death in this comic series also seems to be none factors over all as they are barely seen and used as the death venomous death machines they are in the film. And that really sucks as I would have liked to see more Snake mayhem in the comics as the comic has no blood and no major scares. And I wish that the creative team behind this comic took the adaptation a little more serious and delivered a better comic series then what we got. I also wish that WildStorm would have chosen to do more Horror Comics based on New Line Cinema Horror Films from 2005 and 2006 as we could have gotten ones based on such films as Final Destination series. The cover for this one is good and eye-catching and the interior art by J.R Klebs is good stuff and is fitting for the time of release comic art for DC and WildStorm comics. Over all I would say that Snakes On A Plane is a very lackluster Horror Comic adaptation that is a cool read for fans of the film who would like to see just how WildStorm could water down a films plot to fit into two issues. Check out the artwork bellow to see the style of Klebs used in the second issue.

Now that we have landed this Horror Comic plane and we found out that WildStorm just filled it with rubber and garden snakes I want to say that while I was not a big fan of this comic adaptation it does not mean you wont find the faster pace better then the films, so I would still say check it out if you are a fan of the film or just like comics based on films. But now that we are off the plane we will be leaving the snakes behind and will be taking a look at a classic comic character that got the DC treatment and that’s Peter Cannon aka Thunderbolt! So until next time read a Horror Comic or three, watch a Horror Movie or two and as always support your local Horror Host. See you next update as we take a look at a classic hero.

The Voyage To Star Trek IV

Welcome back to Rotten Ink.  Once more we will be heading to space with the crew of the USS Enterprise as we take a look at Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home and the DC Comic adaptation of it! Many Trekkies find this film to be one of the best sequels in the series only slightly behind Star Trek II: The Wrath Of Khan, and I must say this film is fantastic and is one that I have seen many times. I know I have said this before and I will say it again, back when these original cast Star Trek movies were released in the late 70’s and all the way to the early 90’s they were big deals and I can remember the TV ads talking about them being in theaters. I also remember the ads in the local newspaper when they would show theater air times complete with mini black and white posters that I would cut out keep. Sadly Star Trek has lost steam at the Box Office for the most part, but has found a new life on CBS All Access with new series being made. So if you are ready, let’s step foot once more on the Enterprise and go on a space adventure with Captain Kirk and his crew.

So let’s start this off the way we should and begin our talk about The Voyage Home with taking a look at the film itself. As always, the film’s write up will be taken from our good friends at IMDB and after I will be writing about the film’s production as well as my thoughts on this fourth Star Trek film. So let’s take a look at this fourth and iconic Star Trek flick.

Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home (1986)

“The most acclaimed Star Trek adventure of all time with an important message. It is the 23rd century, and a mysterious alien probe is threatening Earth by evaporating the oceans and destroying the atmosphere. In their frantic attempt to save mankind, Admiral Kirk and his crew must time travel back to 1986 San Francisco where they find a world of punk, pizza and exact-change buses that are as alien to them as anything they have ever encountered in the far-off reaches of the galaxy. William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy return as Kirk and Spock, along with the entire Star Trek crew.”

Before Star Trek III was even finished and out, Paramount Pictures was already talking about a fourth film in the series, and they wanted Leonard Nimoy to return to direct and come up with the story as they liked the way his ideas were going. You see at this time Paramount was very much behind the Star Trek property and knew they had something special in their hands and started to truly understand that it has a majorly loyal fan base…unlike most modern Star Wars fans. At first the fourth film had a rocky start as William Shatner was not wanting to return to play Captain Kirk and only agreed to after a massive raise that got him $2.5 million to do the film.   Nimoy wanted to make a more fun picture as the first three films were very serious and filled with drama, and this go around he wanted to add a little humor. The original idea had the Enterprise Crew returning to Earth to stop a virus whose only cure was destroyed way back due to the cutting of the rainforests in the past…but people dying this way was not the way they wanted to go and so they went with the idea of returning home to get a whale to sing its song to save Earth from being destroyed by a weapon that only responds to their calls. The original script had a part for comedian and actor Eddie Murphy, who is a Trekkie, to play a professor who believes in aliens…but he disliked the role and went on to make the film The Golden Child instead. The script for this film also had lots of issues as not only was William Shatner displeased with many of them but so was Paramount Pictures who brought back Nicholas Meyer to help rewrite it and he joined names like Daniel Petrie Jr, Steve Meerson, Peter Krikes and Harve Bennett all of who, had ideas and wrote parts of this script! And after rewrites, Paramount was finally pleased with the scripts, and the film went into the filming stages. Leonard Rosenman ended up doing the score for the film and when released it was met with great reviews from critics and fans, and over the years it’s rated as one of the best films in the series. When released in 1986, it was the # 5 to grossing film in America bringing in as of this date $109,713,132.00 on a budget of only $21 million and beat out other films like Aliens, Short Circuit, Pretty In Pink, Friday The 13th Pat VI: Jason Lives, Howard The Duck, Legend and Labyrinth to name a few. And when released on home media, it was a top selling film showing that this fourth film in the Star Trek series really is a great film that has kept over the decades its popularity with Trek fans.

When Star Trek IV was being released in theaters, I can remember seeing the ads in the paper as well as commercials all over TV as this one seemed to have more hype around it and to be honest is the one I remember the most from the early films as I was the perfect age. The first time I ever saw the film was in science class in Middle School in Waynesville as my science teacher Mr. York was a big fan of Star Trek and college football and would often uses a Star Trek reference during teaching. He wanted the class to watch the film to show how actions have reactions; he was an awesome teacher. Plus it was a great way to spend a few classes taking a break and watching a Sci-Fi film with your classmates. I remember liking the film as it was cool to see them in more of a modern setting as well as tackling the issue that was the world killing whales and limiting their population, something that is sadly still a struggle to this day thanks to over fishing and whalers killing them to sell the blubber for cosmetics and other products. Kirk and Spock are fantastic as they try and figure out a way to bring a whale to their time, and Scotty talking to the computer mouse is classic stuff. Plus who doesn’t laugh seeing the Enterprise Crew trying their best to fit in to the late 1980’s society and being super awkward doing so. Over the years I would go on to get the film on VHS as well as later DVD and would watch pretty often along with the other films in the series featuring the original cast. This film as well is considered one of the best in the movie series and many place it right behind Star Trek II: The Wrath Of Khan as being the second best over all, I however would place it in my top three for sure, but at # 3! If you have not seen this one and want to watch Spock put the Vulcan Nerve Pitch onto a Punk Rocker on a RTA Bus after he flipped off, Kirk check this one out.

Like all the Star Trek movies that came before it, Star Trek IV had its fair share of amazing merchandise for fans to collect over the years like a paperback book adaptation, comic book, action figures, posters, magazines, soundtrack, trading cards, t-shirts and even buttons to name a few. This was the one Star Trek movie from my youth that when it was released I can remember the hype train being around and many of these items at stores my family shopped at like Hearts, Hills and Gold Circle. Star Trek IV had some great merchandise and I can remember over the years owning the film on both VHS and DVD. I had and read the paperback book, owned the comic book plus of course had the soundtrack on cassette and later on CD.

Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home really is a great sequel in the Trek movie series and brought a more modern feel to the series that many younger viewers had started to see as dated. And while not my favorite of the sequels, it is one I 100% enjoy and have watched many, many times over the years. And we are now at the time of this update that we take a look at the comic adaptation, and I am very much looking forward to reading this one again as I have not since I was a very early teenager. I want to thank Mavericks Cards And Comics for having this comic in stock all those years ago and want to remind all you readers that I grade these comics on a star scale of 1 to 4 and am looking for how well the comics stay to the source material, its entertainment value and its art and story. So if you are ready, let’s climb aboard the Enterprise once more and go on a trip with Captain Kirk and his crew and let’s save the world and the whales!

Star Trek IV: Voyage Home # 1  ***
Released in 1987     Cover Price $2.00     DC Comics     # 1 of 1

The USS Saratoga is trying to communicate with a probe that is not responding and is draining the ship of all its power. We then cut to a Starfleet Court as Captain James T. Kirk is on trail for many counts that go against the fleet as well as the killing of the Klingon crew as well as stealing the Bird Of Prey ship. The Klingon spokesperson also accuses Kirk of using the Genesis Project and claims all the destruction it caused was part of his plan. Speaking on behalf of Kirk and his crew is Ambassador Sarek who gets the court to dismiss the claims of the Klingons who claim that they will never be at peace as long as Kirk lives! Meanwhile on the planet Vulcan, the crew of the USS Enterprise are stranded as Scotty works his magic on the Bird Of Prey so that they can return to Earth and face the courts. While getting ready to leave, Kirk allows Lt. Saavik to step down and stay behind on her home planet, as the re-born now adult Spock is learning the ways of his culture and decides to go to Earth with his former crewmates. Meanwhile the Probe is heading for Earth and is shutting down all the Star Fleet ships and even their bases and is causing the planet to be covered in a fog! As Kirk and his crew head to Earth, they get a message from the President who is warning all ships not to come close to Earth as a Probe has it under attack by creating mass flooding and can shut down any and all ships, Spock figures out that the Probe is trying to talk to a whale and that Earth is in trouble as they had all been killed in the 21st Century! Kirk decides that the way they can help the Earth is by going back in time and bringing two whales back to their time in order to answer the Probe and save the Earth. Once they travel back in time they do their best to blend in and split off into groups as they not only have to find the whales but also build tanks for them to take back as well as they need a nuclear reactor to recharge the ship’s crystal that gives it the power needed to return! McCoy, Scotty and Sulu head out to try and find the materials needed to build the tanks and even change history a little along the way, Uhura and Chekov find the place to get the nuclear power needed and Spock and Kirk head out to find the whales! Dr. Gillian Taylor is in charge of two whales in captivity, and Spock and Kirk make their way to visit. Spock dives into the tank and mind melds with one of the whales and learns that the female is pregnant and they both hate how people treat them and they are willing to go to the future to save the Earth from the Probe. Kirk goes out to dinner with Gillian after she drops Spock off at the park where their ship is hidden. Meanwhile Scotty, McCoy and Sulu find a manufacturer and give them the idea to make a stronger plastic that they can use to transport the whales on the Bird Of Prey back to the future. Meanwhile Chekov and Uhura are on a ship trying to get the nuclear energy needed they are spotted by the military and while Uhura gets away, poor Chekov suffers a head injury. And now they have to get to the hospital to save him from surgery and Gillian also returns to the park and is beamed aboard as she has bad news that her boss has shipped off the whales to the ocean! Kirk and this crew get to the hospital and save Chekov and then track the whales and save them from blubber hunters and get them on the ship and along with Gillian they return to the future and the whales answer the probe and the Earth is saved! But even after saving the day Kirk and his crew must face the court, and what they get as punishment is Kirk is demoted from Admiral back to Captain and he is assigned a new ship with his crew and their adventures continue.

First things first, this could be the best Star Trek Movie adaptation we have covered thus far as it truly captures the adventure and nature of the film! The plot of this comic and the film is pretty simple: a Probe that can destroy a planet sends out a whale song that is not answered as mankind has killed them off in the future and now they are paying the price as the probe is causing a massive flood on Earth and it’s up to Kirk and the Enterprise Crew to travel back in time and bring whales from the past to the future to answer the Probe’s call. Captain Kirk in this issue is in deep trouble with Star Fleet as he disobeyed orders in order to save the reborn Spock and even blew up his own ship that was high jacked by Klingons that leave all the invaders dead! I also should note that Kirk is an Admiral for most of this issue and even though he is in trouble he and his crew take action and save many lives as well as Earth from becoming a massive swimming pool. Spock is starting to get his mind back after being dead, and is slowly remembering his friendships and memories of being Spock. He also as always he one who figures out how to save the day as well as has the skills to talk to the whales that are needed to save the day. Scotty as well is a lifesaver as his knowledge of space crafts and compounds make the transport tanks possible. Poor Chekov while trying to get nuclear power needed for the ships crystals gets a nasty head injury and must be saved from the hospital and treated by McCoy to heal him up. And the rest of the Enterprise Crew McCoy, Sulu and Uhura are all doing their part to get the stuff they need in the past to save the future. Dr. Gillian Taylor is a woman who loves her job and cares very much for the two whales that have been in her care, and I also respect that she leaves her life behind to travel to the future to stay with them and help teach the future about caring for them. DC Comics so far has delivered two very well done adaptations of Star Trek movies and this one does a top notch job of capturing the true fun, silly and sci-fi action of the film. The thing that works the best for me is the fact that this comic does a great job of capturing the humor of this film, and while “Hello Computer” is a little weak in the comic, other gags work great in ink. The cover is really good for the time and is eye catching as the interior artwork done by Tom Sutton is great stuff as he captures the look and attitude of each character. If you like Star Trek IV, this comic is one that should be in your collection as it will surely entertain you. And to be honest I am very much looking forward to reading the comic for Star Trek V next year as these update are truly a blast for me to write. Check out the artwork below to see the style of Tom from this issue, and I picked panels that are from some of my favorite scenes from the movie.

Star Trek IV is a fun film as well as a fun comic and for me. While I enjoy the other Star Trek shows like Next Generation, Deep Space Nine, Voyager, Enterprise and Discovery, none of them are as good as the original series and the movies that followed with them. Captain Kirk is for me the best of the Captains, and I wish William Shatner would return one last time to Star Trek and unite with the remaining cast for one last voyage. But for my next update we will be leaving space and heading to the world of Horror Hosts for our first in our celebration of 10 Years of the Horror Host Hall Of Fame as we take a look at Miko Macabre of Cryptique! So until next time, read a Star Trek comic or three, watch a Star Trek Movie or Show and as always support your local Horror Host! See your next time as we cover one of YouTube’s best Horror Hosts from the past.