John’s ProFan Review: Crazy4Cult - Cult Movie Art 2
Coming in at 175 pages of pure, unadulterated cult movie art, Crazy4Cult - Cult Movie Art 2 collects a burgeoning art movement dedicated to your favorite films and puts it right in your hands.
"Descent Into Madness" by N.C. Winters, inspired by The Shining, serves as the collection’s cover photo.
Owning to a lineage which includes art history giants such as Andy Warhol, Jasper Johns, and Roy Lichtenstein, today’s pop art movement has exploded throughout the streets from heavyweights like Banksy and Shepard Fairey and across the internet in places like Reddit or Imgur, where an artist’s work can reach millions in moments. In this accessibility, we’ve seen a new art movement emerge; a movement based not on a critical view of popular culture, but simply an extension of the appreciation toward culture. “Cult movies” are, by definition, films that may or may not be overtly popular but have made a cultural impact with a certain amount of people. Like cult films themselves, the artists like those featured in Crazy4Cult - Cult Movie Art 2 have experienced a renaissance of sorts in the past decade. Much of that is due to the expansion of the internet and the ease with which it allows like-minded people to communicate, but a great deal of it is thanks to people like Katie Cromwell and Jensen Karp. That’s where Gallery1988 comes into the picture.
In an introduction written for Crazy4Cult - Cult Movie Art 2, Karp describes how he and Cromwell saw artists creating amazing art that was going unappreciated by the art community, just ten years ago. That’s why, in 2004, the two opened Gallery1988 in Los Angeles to give a home to affordable artwork from emerging artists whose work focused on the pop culture subjects they enjoyed. Since then, they’ve grown to two locations in Los Angeles, and they have shows in New York City.
"Detention" by Matt Owen, inspired by The Breakfast Club.
In 2007, Gallery1988 held their first annual Crazy4Cult series, which—you guessed it—features art inspired by cult films. The annual show, hosted by Kevin Smith and Scott Mosier, has grown into a worldwide attraction. It’s another instance of Cromwell and Karp picking exactly the right time to jump into the pop art fray, as the internet has made it so easy for people to speak up and say “Yes, I like this. Give me more.”
Crazy4Cult - Cult Movie Art 2, if it’s not obvious, is a follow-up to Crazy4Cult - Cult Movie Art, a collection which was released in 2011. The first book collected some of the best artwork from the first four years of the Crazy4Cult series and was very well-received. This second book includes even more phenomenal artwork inspired by not only the films you might expect—like: Back to the Future, Robocop, Ghostbusters, and Alien—but also some unexpected films like Harold and Maude, The Hudsucker Proxy, The Room, and so many more.
"Milk Plus" by Danielle Buerli, a mixed media piece inspired by A Clockwork Orange.
Speaking of the unexpected, there are two things I got from Crazy4Cult - Cult Movie Art 2 which I legitimately didn’t expect. First, I don’t know why, but it did not even cross my mind that the art would not be all paintings. Not only does the paper art include things like acrylics on wood, gouache, screenprints, giclee prints, etc; but there are also mixed media sculptures, ceramics, and even freaking needlepoint. There is really something for everyone who loves cult movies and/or damn fine art.
The second unexpected thing I got out of the book is something that Seth Rogen kind of touches on in the foreword he penned for it. Art, being a visual medium, is supposed to capture your eye; the classic works of Michelangelo, Raphael—you know, all the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles—certainly does capture the eye. However, art is supposed to also capture your spirit and your mind; that classic work certainly does still do that for quite a few people, but it’s, frankly, not representative of a modern world. That’s what much of our contemporary art—pop art, in particular, at its core—does; the pop art movement of the 1950s and ’60s turned a mirror on society and the popular culture of the time. Now, most of the art we consume is not the static wall art of old, but rather the moving art of film or video games. To that end, the mirror held up by Crazy4Cult - Cult Movie Art 2 (and the modern cult art movement it represents) is not a mirror of criticism like that of past pop art but a mirror of admiration which forces a sort of nostalgia upon you which can be moving, because that’s just how nostalgia works.
The beautiful “Luck is Never Enough” by Shannon Bonatakis, inspired by The NeverEnding Story.
Ben’s ProFan Review: Star Trek Federation: The First 150 Years
With all the “in-universe” Star Trek reference books that have been published over the decades, starting with the classic Star Fleet Technical Manual in the mid-1970s, it’s a bit startling to realize that a comprehensive history of the United Federation of Planets has never been published until now, with Star Trek Federation: The First 150 Years.
David Goodman, perhaps best known for his six years as head writer and executive producer on the Trek-loving Family Guy, jumped at the opportunity to write this book and produce the definitive history of the first 150 years of the Federation. That’s a timeframe that covers the TV shows Star Trek: Enterprise and Star Trek: The Original Series. You’ll find no Next Generation, Deep Space Nine or Voyager references here, only sly allusions to events that time travel by characters in those series managed to impact, such as Earth’s first visit by Vulcans in the film Star Trek: First Contact. And never mind the chronology of the alternate universe presented in the last couple of Star Trek movies, that’s straight out.
This is specifically the history of the Federation in the Star Trek Prime Universe, and should serve as a balm of any fans offended by the J.J. Abrams reboot.
Goodman knits together the chronologies of Enterprise and The Original Series in a way that manages to explain discrepancies between the two series. From the days of the Eugenics Wars, to the aforementioned First Contact, through the era of the Romulan War and forward to the era of Kirk and Spock, every major event in Trek history is covered. If there’s a reference to a lost vessel and the actions of an earlier crew in The Original Series, it’s covered as part of Federation history in this handsome and lavishly illustrated volume.
Although presented almost as a history textbook, Star Trek Federation: The First 150 Years still features Goodman’s trademark sense of humor. SF media fans will find chuckle-worthy sideways references to other shows. Portions of newspaper articles, scientific reports, Captain’s Logs and the like are presented as sidebars and they’re all worthy of attention to spot the Easter Eggs. For example, both Doctor Who and Space: 1999 get references with an article titled MYSTERY COMMANDOES STEAL ADVANCED SPACESHIP by one Sarah Jane Smith, featuring a quote from Victor Bergman, chief astronomer at the Anderson Space Command: “It’s left Earth’s orbit, we’re sure of that.” You can almost imagine the brief Family Guy cut-scene featuring the joke.
Star Trek Federation: The First 150 Years is a delight and should provide hours of happy browsing for Trek fans who long for the era when the best ship in the universe was just the U.S.S. Enterprise, NCC-1701, “No bloody A, B, C, or D!”
— Ben Adams
For more book reviews and news, please head to ProjectFandom.com.
Rex’s ProFan Review: The Counselor
Cast: Michael Fassbender, Javier Bardem, Cameron Diaz, Brad Pitt, Penelope Cruz
Director: Ridley Scott
Over a year has passed since Prometheus was released and, to this day, a few heated arguments and expressions of disdain can still be found within the blogosphere. Ridley Scott has received a lot of flak, mostly undeserving because the Alien mythology is his creation to do as he pleases; not to mention the innumerable viewings all of us have experienced with at least the first two films of the series. That all being written, Scott has certainly returned to form with his latest grisly drama, The Counselor.
Armed with an original screenplay written by legendary writer Cormac McCarthy (No Country for Old Men, The Road, Child of God) the grit, dire, and desolation typically associated with his books is well represented. Coupled with Scott’s masterful take on sweeping landscapes with highly stylized action, The Counselor doesn’t become just a film but a modern take on a costly morality tale.
In usual McCarthy fashion, each character is flawed in their respective ways, hovering within the low end of the moral spectrum. Greedy, distrustful, and devoid of empathy, they’re cogs in a great machine that no one dares to upset, given the potential repercussions.
There’s a reason Michael Fassbender is the one of the “it” guys in Hollywood, and The Counselor is the perfect vehicle to showcase the gamut of his talent. Ambitious, cunning, and overly confident, The Counselor has witnessed from afar the lavish lifestyles of his clients, their veneer of comfort and privilege. What he quickly learns is achieving that quality of life is more precarious and lethal than expected.
Those already in the trafficking business like Reiner (Javier Bardem) and Westray (Brad Pitt) are quite aware of the costs their chosen profession has taken on their lives. With all the money they’d ever need, the ability to acquire all money can buy… what good is it if at any moment they may suffer a hollow death because of a mere slight? Their persistent warnings fall on the deaf ears of The Counselor, whose only desire is to create a comfortable life for himself and his fiance Laura (Penelope Cruz). This is further expounded upon by Jefe (Ruben Blades) who provides The Counselor with an insight and pragmatic exposition only a high level cartel member can provide.
Going by the billing, one would assume Cameron Diaz would be the weak link in the production yet an argument can be made that, however seldom seen, Diaz has range and can provide a conviction to her character. From the start, Malkina gives the air of being a heartless sociopath whose avarice is as great as her lack of regard for others. To portray such a creature is no easy task, no matter the caliber of actor. Diaz’s character will certainly be memorable for her calculating, callous nature. It may appear that she isn’t doing much within a scene, but she ‘reads’ everyone within the room, forever compelled to be two steps ahead of everyone. She’ll most likely be remembered for a singular scene which demonstrate her capacity to do whatever it takes to get whatever she wants. Also, be prepared to never look at the windshield the same way ever again.
In a year that featured a disproportionate amount of underwhelming features, The Counselor is a compelling thriller charged with a fierce tension that’ll make you wince at the deadly trappings presented in all their excessively graphic glory. It’s been a while since Ridley Scott has pulled no punches; The Counselor is more than enough colorful stimulation in this post-Breaking Bad world.
— Rexlor Graymond
For more movie reviews and news, please head to ProjectFandom.com.
Podcast Fandom Episode 12: Scandal S3E2 ‘Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner’
Our Scandal podcast is up! Join ProFans Nina, Margeaux, and Meghan as they discuss this week’s episode. Highlights include: Fitz’s lack of power, Olivia’s creepy-ass daddy, Mellie’s badassness, and Huck not having any of Olivia’s shit. Despite the lack of sex, all three agreed that the episode was fantastic.
Behold: Fitz’s presidential hair.
The Walking Dead - S4E1 - 30 Days Without An Accident
Previously on The Walking Dead
In the cold open, Rick goes out to one of the fields in front of the prison to do some farm work. He finds a gun in the dirt, takes the magazine out and tosses both in his wheelbarrow. He pops his music back on like there isn’t a ton of Walkers at the fence.
What’s Eating Violet Grape?
They’ve come a looong way from the season 3 finale. They have a garden, some pigs, and a real community of people. Carl notices that one of the pigs is sick and wonders what’s wrong with Violet. Rick scolds him for naming them since they’re food once they’re no longer piglets.
Meanwhile, Daryl is strutting through the grounds like a P.I.M.P. Everyone greets him warmly, especially the ladies. Carol reminds him that she “liked him first.” A young kid, Patrick, takes over cooking duty from Carol, but not before greeting Daryl like he’s a fucking rockstar.
Carol and Daryl walk over to one of the fences and she notes that there are dozens of Walkers there and at another fence. They’re gathering in groups and she’s not sure how long the fences can stand. One of the jobs around the prison is Fence Duty and that entails stabbing the Walkers in the face as they approach the fence
Glenn doesn’t want Maggie to go on the supply run that Daryl is leading. He won’t say why, but she agrees not to go. Tyrese wants to go on the run because fence duty is too up close and personal for him. The only reason he’d been volunteering to do it before is because Karen from Woodbury does it and apparently they’re a couple now.
Hershel is schooling Rick on some farming techniques while Beth kisses, but refuses to say goodbye to, her boyfriend Zach, who’s also going on the run.
Michonne returns on a damn horse and it is awesome. She’s been out searching for The Governor and suggests going to Macon. Daryl says 70 miles of Walkers might not be worth it. She says she’s sticking around for awhile and agrees to head out on the run.
A new guy, Bob Stuckey, wants to go on the run. He’s only been there a week and wants to do his part. Sasha isn’t feeling it at first, but eventually agrees.
They’ve also developed a small government led by The Council: Carol, Daryl, Sasha, Glenn and Hershel (probably some others that I missed) and they’ve all decided that when Rick leaves the prison, he needs to start taking his gun with him. Apparently, he hasn’t been.
Lady in the Woods
While Rick’s out checking the snares, he sees a female Walker fall on a sick boar. He starts to walk away when she asks him to wait. “Please help me.”
He reluctantly agrees to go back to her camp so they can get her sick husband and return to the prison. After checking her for a gun, they head off. She talks about how hard it’s been and you can tell. The whole time they’re walking I wasn’t entirely convinced that Rick wasn’t still touring Crazy Town. I was like, “If this fool is walking around with a Walker, I’m gonna turn this shit off.” But she’s real. Real creepy and raggedy. When they get to her camp, she attacks him with a knife. Rick knocks her to the ground and draws his gun. She stabs herself and begs Rick to let her come back so she can be with her husband Eddie, whose zombie head is writhing around under a blanket. She was going to feed Rick to her husband’s zombie head. That’s some shit. Rick heads back to the prison, but doesn’t shoot her in the head to keep her from turning.
Carol is holding story time in the library for the kids. When left alone with the kids, we learn that Carol has actually been teaching them how to handle weapons. Carl, who’d been sneaking in to listen to the story on the D.L. so as not to appear like a kid, is shocked. Carol asks him not to tell Rick and Carl rushes out without saying anything. Patrick had already left because he wasn’t feeling well.
Detective Dixon and the Case of the Falling Walkers
The group’s run is to a strip mall the military had sectioned off as a safe place. A few days ago, the group set up a boom box playing music to lure the Walkers that were inside out. Now they can go in and scout for supplies. Daryl taps the glass on some kind of super store.
While they wait for any Walkers inside to come to the front, Zach tries to guess what Daryl did for a living before the world went to hell. He guesses undercover cop, which makes Michonne laugh. Daryl goes along with it for a bit before telling Zach to keep guessing.
When they enter the store, we see that there are a ton of Walkers on the roof, along with a crashed helicopter. As they scout for supplies, Glenn looks at a sign with a newborn on it and has a funny look on his face. Hmmmm. Bob contemplates pocketing a bottle of wine, and seems to struggle with the decision before putting it back on the shelf. When he does so, the shelf falls on him. The noise attracts the zombies on the roof.
As the group tries to free Bob from the shelving unit, which has trapped his leg, the zombies above start falling through the roof. The crashed helicopter and lots of fluids had weakened it. Lots of Walker killing takes place in many cool ways including Sasha dispatching of one with a pool cue and Michonne wielding her sword like a badass. In the midst of it all, Zach gets bitten and eventually eaten. The helicopter falls through the roof and the rest of the group makes it out.
Meanwhile, Back at the Ranch…
When Rick returns to the prison, he notices that Violet has died. Later, he speaks with Hershel about what happened with the crazy lady in the woods. He notes that if he lost Carl and Judith, that could very well be him.
Daryl has the unfortunate task of telling Beth about Zach and is surprised by how well she takes it.
Tyrese tells Karen he doesn’t like going on runs either.
Glenn is happy to learn that Maggie isn’t pregnant and we see that’s why he was acting funny earlier. She tells him that they could have a baby if they wanted to because she doesn’t want to be afraid, but Glenn doesn’t agree. Not after everything that has happened.
Michonne eyes a map and zeroes in on Macon, Georgia.
While everyone is sleeping, Patrick makes his way to the showers. He looks like shit. He pumps some water and stands under the shower before passing out. On the floor, his face is bloody and he’s dead. After awhile, he opens his eyes and he’s gone full zombie.
Next Week: Shit Gets Real
Top DC Comics Villains - Villains Month
For the month of September 2013, the villains have taken over DC Comics in an event appropriately titled “Villains Month”. Many of the publisher’s signature titles have been temporarily rebranded for the month.
The month of September has routinely been an important publishing period for DC Comics: in 2011, September saw the launch of The New 52, DC’s relaunch of several of their largest and most indelible titles; in 2012, September was branded “Zero Month” and used to tell several of the heroes’ origin stories. Now, this month, the villains have stepped to center stage. “Villains Month” consists of 52 one-shots of various members of DC’s rogues gallery temporarily taking over titular duties from their heroes. All of this comes in conjunction with Forever Evil, a villain-centric crossover; DC’s first crossover event since 2011’s Flashpoint whichserved as the catalyst for their “New 52” relaunch. Needless to say, this month is a pretty big deal.
With all of this exciting stuff going on, we here at Project Fandom thought we just had to get in on the fun, so we’ve had ProFans Chanse and John compile a list of a dozen of their favorite DC villains. Keep in mind that this is not intended to be a list of the best of DC’s villains, but a subjectively chosen list of favorites.
One of the few creations of Jack Kirby to not belong to Marvel, Darkseid is the dark lord of the planet Apokolips, and the “Hades” of an alternate pantheon of gods. He’s basically a rock-faced Hitler with the powers of a god, who wants nothing more than for the entire universe to bow to him. He started early, killing his own brother to acquire even more powers. He is invulnerable, super-strong, and super-fast, on par with Superman. He can time travel; he’s telepathic, telekinetic, and the Omega Beams he shoots from his eyes are capable of knocking down, disintegrating, transmuting, and even resurrecting. Darkseid figures heavily in DC’s “Final Crisis” crossover event and is one of the chief baddies in the New 52 run of JLA.
Deathstroke the Terminator often gets written off as DC’s Deadpool, but aside from somewhat of a superficial resemblance, I do not agree. He’s really more of “What if Captain America were a mercenary?”. He’s vicious, ruthless, fast, smart, as strong as ten men, and for the right price he can be on your side. His mercenary tendencies have landed him on the side of good for small spells, but I’m pretty sure he didn’t like it. He does have a strange tendency to fight teenagers (as he is an archenemy of the Teen Titans), but he’s fought Batman to a standstill, and in his the New 52 title, “Deathstroke”, he’s shown he can even take punches from Lobo, so that maybe cancels out the “picking on kids” bit.
Black Adam was created simply to be the evil counterpart of Captain Marvel (the DC comics guy, not the Marvel comics girl), but has evolved into one of the more interesting anti-heroes in the DC universe. Imbued, at the incantation of “Shazam!” with the same magical superpowers as Captain Marvel, Black Adam uses these powers in defense of his African nation of Khandaq. His unwavering loyalty to his people and loved ones, coupled with experiences of slavery and loss as a boy, make up for a volatile personality. At once honorably noble and violently vengeful, Black Adam ends up on both sides of the good/evil spectrum more often than any other character in the DC universe. Because his “evil” extends from trauma and experiences that anyone can sympathize with, I continually find myself rooting for Black Adam in spite of the atrocities he is capable of. Pick up “52”, written by the superhuman complement of Geoff Johns, Grant Morrison, Greg Rucka, Mark Waid, and Keith Griffen, and witness Black Adam murdering supervillains live on television, then saving his brother-in-law from slavery and paraplegia by sharing his power, to get a sense of what this character is capable of.
If you don’t think a giant hyper-intelligent gorilla with psionic powers is bad-ass, I’m not sure I can help you. The Flash’s archnemesis has an insatiable hunger for power (and occasionally human flesh). My favorite aspect of Grodd, though, is his ambition; He will settle for nothing less than the complete eradication of the human race. This monkey don’t play.
I’m going a little off-book here, as the Rot is not a villain in the traditional sense. It’s more of an elemental force that expresses itself in the form of several villains such as the unspeakable Sethe and the various members of the Arcane family. The Rot is the embodiment of all the death and decay in the natural world. Balanced against the Green (plant life) and the Red (animal life), it is a necessary force to keep the cycle of life intact. When out of balance, however, it seeks to overwhelm the other two, and, using its powerful avatars, destroy all life on the planet. You can get your fill of death and decay in the excellent “Rotworld” storyline in the New 52 titles, Animal Man and Swamp Thing.
Villain Icon Choice
Few villains are as widely recognized as the crooked corporate executive/mad scientist, Lex Luthor. His bald badness has been harassing Superman for over 70 years, armed with nothing but his superior human intellect. (Though his superior human intellect often arms him with Iron Man-like battlesuits and Kryptonite guns.) The body count he’s tallied over the years, in his blind hatred for Superman, aside, he’s the sort of villain a real hero needs. Bringing Kal-El’s less touted abilities to the forefront, he forces Supes to out-think him, so every confrontation is not just a matter of a superpowered punch to the face. My favorite take on the character is in the TPB “Superman: Red Son,” by Mark Millar. The story tweaks him a little bit so he’s not quite a villain, but it certainly doesn’t make him a nice guy.
I am an unabashed Green Lantern fan; yes, I even like the Green Lantern film. I love how the story treats willpower as a superpower, and I enjoy the idea that—if you just desire to be a hero hard enough—you could be chosen to join the Green Lantern Corps. That’s the story of Hal Jordan, but it’s also the story of Thaal Sinestro; he wanted so badly to keep his home planet of Korugar safe that a series of fortuitous events led to him receiving his ring and membership in the Corps. The great thing about the Green Lantern universe, and its use of the emotional spectrum, is that it is able to so clearly demonstrate the dangers of giving too much power to one emotion. Not to get into too much psychoanalysis mumbo jumbo, but the same abundant willpower that led Sinestro to becoming one of the Green Lantern Corps’ greatest heroes also led him to overthrowing his home planet and naming himself its dictator; all in the name of safety. This, of course, eventually led to his removal from the Green Lantern Corps, the creation of the yellow power ring and Sinestro Corps, and history has since seen Sinestro become the greatest nemesis of the Green Lantern Corps.
Brainiac may be the most complicated of Superman’s enemies. He’s been a conquering alien, a maniacal android, a murderous robot, a swarm of nanobots, and several other forms. That’s what I like the most about the character; he was first introduced in 1958 as an alien invader, and it wasn’t until 1964 that he was “revealed” to be a machine. Ever since then, he has continued to evolve right alongside the ever changing computer technology of the world; from diodes, to Y2K, to nanobots, the character of Brainiac has had the luxury of real world science influencing its in-universe pseudoscience, and I love that. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the best Brainiac storyline: the bottled city of Kandor. When Brainiac was first introduced as that “alien invader”, he had come to Earth looking to shrink Metropolis and take it with him; it was later discovered by Superman that, decades prior, Brainiac had done this same thing with Kandor, the capitol city of Krypton. Anyway, it’s a fantastic piece of writing that brought a piece of Superman’s destroyed home planet into play, while simultaneously giving him one of his greatest foes. In 2008, this storyline was retold by Geoff Johns in Superman: Brainiac; the DC Animated Universe recently adapted that story arc into Superman: Unbound.
Vandal Savage is simply a damn intriguing character. He is one of DC’s oldest villains; both in terms of publishing history (the character was introduced all the way back in 1943) and in in-universe history (he is an immortal whose life dates back to 50,000 BC). Savage began life as a literal caveman; it wasn’t until an encounter with a meteorite that he became both immortal and highly intelligent. He’s a nearly impervious, masterful tactician; almost a bit of a mixture between Batman and Superman. If you weren’t familiar with the character until this very moment—hopefully you were, but if you weren’t—that should just be awesome enough for you to instantly love this guy. Savage’s best storyline, to me, actually happens to be an arc that is unique to the DC Animated Universe; namely, the Justice League animated series. In the two-part “Hereafter”, a series of events caused by Savage’s lust for power results in the destruction of the human race. In this arc, Savage is forced to spend thousands of years living with his regret, which turns him into a good guy… whose existence is nullified when he helps a time-traveling Superman save the day. I’m just very intrigued by the concept of immortality and how it affects you over time; for this reason, Vandal Savage remains a very interesting villain.
Captain Cold is the leader of The Rogues, a group of baddies who are always causing a mild amount of trouble for Flash. I say “mild amount” because they are not your typical villains; no group of ne’er-do-wells has ever fit the term “career criminal” as well as Captain Cold, Mirror Master, et al. They’re motivated, not by a desire to stop Flash, but by a desire to… be criminals. Of course, this has led some to criticize the Flash comics for what would appear to be “weak” villains; what Captain Cold and crew lack in comic book villainy, they more than make up for in humanity. That sounds like a very pretentious way to put it, but fuck it; I’ll be pretentious. It’s the same quality you find in the best Batman villains; they feel like people instead of characters, and sometimes that’s what you want. Captain Cold is a guy who almost kind of tried to be a comic book villain but failed into his Flash-antithetical persona out of necessity. That’s kind of the way the Flash comics have been written ever since the character’s relaunch during the Silver Age, when Barry Allen only gave himself the “Flash” name because he had read the earlier Jay Garrick Flash comics. It’s a very self-aware franchise, and that’s just a hell of a lot of fun.
After having just said all of that stuff about how Flash is always dealing with somewhat lovable villains, sometimes he has had to face some serious comic book villainy shit. That’s where Anti-Monitor comes in. As the antagonist of 1985’s Crisis on Infinite Earths, one of DC’s biggest and most classic miniseries events, Anti-Monitor came up against not only Flash, but also Superman, Supergirl… and freaking everyone. That’s the point of a crossover, of course, but Crisis is every bit of the word “event”. Originally, Anti-Monitor was an enemy of the Green Lantern Corps, but his creation caused problems for everybody in the DC Universe. Using weaponized antimatter waves, Anti-Monitor fucks things up in a big, bad way; so bad, in fact, the villain is so powerful that he simply cannot be used very often. He’s huge, and he basically has the ability to end any-and-everything. To date, he’s only shown up four times, in crossovers: Crisis on Infinite Earths, Sinestro Corps War, Blackest Night, and Brightest Day.
Villain Icon Choice
Everyone is familiar with The Joker; if not from the comics, then at least from Heath Ledger’s masterful portrayal of the character in Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight Trilogy. The Joker is Batman’s greatest enemy, and—in many ways—the only person who really understands Bruce Wayne. Like water smoothing over rocks, in Batman and The Joker, the decades have given us a nearly perfect cohesion of antithetical partners in mythology. As Batman’s traumatic life has led to his unwavering dedication to justice and the belief that everyone can be saved, The Joker’s life of dark comedy has created in him a man who sees no salvation in anything. The Joker’s stubborn belief that absolutely everyone is evil, deep down, results in his refusal to kill Batman; at the same time, Batman’s stubborn belief that everyone is salvageable results in his refusal to kill The Joker. This ideological—and clinically insane—tug of war is what gives us the greatest rivalry in all of comics. The only way one of them wins is if the other chooses to fail, and their willpower—not unlike that of a Green Lantern—will never let that happen. Perhaps the best Joker story, to date, is Alan Moore’s one-shot: Batman: The Killing Joke.
There you have it, ProFans; our contribution to DC’s Villains Month. If you’d like to grab some of this month’s villain-centric titles, a few that go on sale this week (September 18th) are Teen Titans #23.2 “Deathstroke”, Flash #23.3 “The Rogues”, and Action Comics #23.3 “Lex Luthor”; among many others.
— Chanse Horton and John Elrod II
If you like this and would like to see more comics news—along with plenty of other fan-centric geek culture commentary—please head over to ProjectFandom.com.