Monday, October 28, 2013

2013 The Atom Movie Fan Casting: Brad Dourif as Chronos

One thing I've tried to do with these POTA fan-casts is to be economical and nerdy. Casey Affleck isn't a big name or a big guy, but I think he'd be a swell Ray Palmer. Christina Ricci and Mel Gibson are both just famous enough to keep the movie premiere out of the Redbox, but are affordable and bring the right kind of baggage to their parts. With Chronos, I wasn't as picky, since there isn't a lot to the character on the page beyond the resemblance to Tricky Dick. I wanted an atypical pick-- someone believable as a criminal of science, and I could go older since the role wouldn't be physically demanding. Brad Dourif is best known as the voice of Chucky in the Child's Play series, but he's a fantastic character actor with a wide range of roles under his belt (my favorite being Doc Cochran on Deadwood.) I think he'd have great chemistry with Affleck, which to me is more important than how he'd look in green & yellow with vertical striped leggings.

Diabolic Movie Fan Casting

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Justice #11 (June, 2007)

The battle at the "Hall of Doom" continued. Giganta held up against the onslaught of Martian Manhunter, Metamorpho, and Red Tornado. The last hero broke off his attack to pin down a weakened Bizarro with tornado winds, but Hawkman and Hawkgirl took his place with Giganta. Green Lantern Hal Jordan, off battling Sinestro at another location, substituted for an omniscient narrator for no good reason other than a lack of craft by considering Giganta's "rage at being confined. She is an animal. Maybe like we all are. But maybe we can learn something where she cannot. There's always someone stronger. Someone smarter. Someone bigger." Elasti-Girl tapped Giganta on the shoulder, then sucker punched her, a gigantic butt cracking the pavement seemingly the closing of all hostilities.

Reunited with their supporting casts thanks to the efforts of Green Arrow and Green Lantern John Stewart, Jean Loring lovingly cradled the Atom against her face. Red Tornado chatted up Kathy Sutton, as the Hawks did Midway City police commissioner George Emmett.

"Chapter Eleven" was plotted and painted by Alex Ross. The script was provided by Jim Krueger, and the penciled layouts by Doug Braithwaite.

Continue the story through these character-specific posts:

Friday, October 18, 2013

Justice #10 (April, 2007)

Previously in Justice

The Atom flew about with his jetpack and raygun at a veritable Hall of Doom, performing reconnaissance on the super-villains gathered there. "They're everywhere. Brainac's nanotechs are swarming all over the place. I think I'm too small to be detected by Brainiac's worms. And the shielding seems to be cloaking me from Grodd's mind. But I'm still not small enough to get past Luthor's force field. That's why Brainiac can't control Luthor." As Batman had predicted though, the Mighty Mite wasn't mini enough to escape the robotic flying worms after all.

The time for discretion ended, an army of heroes burst onto the scene. The Tiny Titan blasted and kicked at the "worms," while the armored Hawkman and Hawkgirl contended with Solomon Grundy. Giganta grew out of her black formal dress into a leopardskinned force to be reckoned with. Red Tornado was in the mix, but disappeared into the periphery for most of the battle, until joining in against Giganta.

Batman eventually confronted Lex Luthor, who stood unconcerned in his force field. "Why do you bother, Bruce? There's nothing you could build in that top secret cave of yours that could break through this." The Dark Knight said he was merely seeing how far along the Tiny Titan had come in dismantling Luthor's tech. "The Atom? Where is he?" Professor Palmer grew to a visible stature in front of Lex's face before punching him right in it. Standing over the fallen genius, Ray noted the scheme was "Your idea, Mr. Wayne. You know, I'm going to feel bad having to go back to calling you Batman after this is all over."

"Chapter Ten" was plotted and painted by Alex Ross. The script was provided by Jim Krueger, and the penciled layouts by Doug Braithwaite.

Continue the story through these character-specific posts:

Friday, October 11, 2013

Justice Volume Two (2007)

Comatose, Ray Palmer survived his wound and was transported to the hospital. While he lay unmoving in his bed, breathing through a respirator, Jean Loring watched over her him. "Come back to me, Ray. Please. I don't know what I'll do if you're not in my life. I love you so much. I know I said I didn't want you to be the Atom anymore. But if that's the only way I can have you, it's okay. I just want you back. Please." Tears streamed down her face as Jean held Ray's arm. She had uncovered his waist, revealing a size-altering belt underneath...

Midway City Museum burned, its faux-Egyptian pillars crumbled. From within a sheltering sarcophagus, Carter and Shiera Hall finally emerged. They could both hear J'Onn J'Onzz contacting them telepathically. "It was Toyman, J'Onn. Toyman did this. But why?"

"It wasn't just him, Hawkgirl. It was all of them."

"Get back in bed, Mr. Palmer. You've been shot. You have to rest." Ray argued with Jean, explaining that no member of the Justice League had answered his signal, and that he was likely not the only target of a potentially lethal attack. Jean rebutted that both the League and herself need him at his best.

A statuesque red-headed nurse agreed with Ray's wife from the door of his hospital room. Loring left the hospital to get some sleep, explaining that she would swing by in the morning before work, because she's an icy bitch. This allowed the nurse the opportunity to give Ray another pillow, held tightly over his face. The nurse was pissed Ray wasn't dead by her bullet earlier, and really blew up when he reached for his size-altering belt. Literally, her body began to warp and expand like something out of Akira, smashing the hospital room in hopes of hitting the Atom.

The Mighty Mite didn't recognize Giganta as he dive-bombed her eye, sending the Wonder Woman villainess through a wall and down the side of the building. Giganta almost hit Jean along with her car as she landed hard on the street below, proving God's benevolence only extends so far. The Tiny Titan then hopped on his wife's shoulder. "I'm okay, honey. But I think I'm bleeding again."

Presumably, Jean muttered obscenities while calling her claims agent, as the Atom wondered if he was the last living Leaguer. Ray worried for the missing Green Lantern, Aquaman and the rest, considering this threat to friends and family "the high cost of doing the right thing." Ray managed to reach Wonder Woman in her invisible jet, who confirmed the Atom's suspicions, and directed him to meet at the team's secret rendezvous site...

Meanwhile, Carter and Shiera Hall changed into their Thanagarian gear to fly with the Martian Manhunter to Metropolis, where the Sleuth from Outer Space had tracked Toyman. Hawkman thanked J'Onn for his help, noting this would be his first visit to the city. Hawkgirl said the same.
"It better be."
"Ha. Don't worry Carter. Everyone knows you're my Superman."

The Manhunter from Mars left for other business, while the Hawks forced their way into a darkened warehouse. "Carter? ...Just in case. I love you." The pair was suddenly surrounded by a store's worth of demented killer toys. "Oh, yeah. I love you, too." Medieval weapons smashed modern distractions, until the Hawks uncovered a factory building Brainiacs by the dozen...

The Justice League Satellite exploded in space, leaving Captain Marvel and Superman unsure of Red Tornado's fate. As it turned out, Zatanna had previously used her magic to send the android to Doc Magnus for repairs, as the Metal Men looked on. Magnus managed to reactivate Red Tornado, who repeated "I found Aquaman."

Doc Magnus, having rebuilt Red Tornado, contacted Wonder Woman in her invisible jet with the android's report. Batman had betrayed the League, causing Tornado's dismantling and the destruction of the Justice League satellite.

As Hawkman ruthlessly smashed Brainiac bodies, Hawkgirl agreed with the Martian Manhunter that a conspiracy was afoot. Katar dropped a bomb down a Brainiac's throat, then hauled his wife through an exit before it exploded. "Next time, tell me. It's not a plan I can be a part of if I don't know what you're doing." Dismissing his partner, Hawkman caught one of the many worms raining down with the debris.

Red Tornado was joined by the Metal Men at the rendezvous point outside Superman's fortress of solitude. Batman greeted him with an extended hand and an apology. "I understand. We are all slaves to our programming." The Atom was presumably present or en route...

The Atom had been studying the artificial worms found by his present friends Hawkman and Hawkgirl at the Fortress of Solitude. When Superman reported the involvement of Brainiac, it cinched the deduction the little buggers were alien in design. Millions of the critters had been inside the Man of Steel, controlled in tandem by a single extant intelligence. "That mind would need to be amplified well beyond even the specifications on Brainiac in the League's files. These machines seem to have limited capabilities for independent operation as well. They really are genius in their simplicity.

Green Lantern Hal Jordan finally made his way to the Fortress of Solitude, as a relieved Atom standing on Captain Marvel's shoulder offered, "I can't believe it. We all survived."

Red Tornado was in a sort of monitor womb, and announced that everybody's supporting cast had been kidnapped, including Jean Loring and Reddy's gals Kathy and Traya...

"Justice, Vol. 2," collecting issues #5-8 of the 2005 mini-series, was plotted and painted by Alex Ross. The script was provided by Jim Krueger, and the penciled layouts by Doug Braithwaite.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Justice Volume One (2006)

Hawkman and Hawkgirl fell blazing from the sky, wings afire like Icarus...

Alex Ross may be able to paint some pretty pictures, but he's also a manchild stuck in the Bronze Age, constantly re-staging the same apocalyptic fantasy fictions. In the Justice maxi-series, where he dolled up Dougie Braithwaite's pencils and had his indentured scripter Jim Krueger on bass, the world once again went kablooey because of super-heroes with feet of clay. Of course, it's only a prophetic dream, just like in Kingdom Come, but at least the (unseen) Ray Palmer got a nice nod within...

"The Atom survives the day, I think. He becomes smaller than the flame, seeking an infinity of possibility between the molecules of the material world. Perhaps in him, perhaps in the Atom, humanity will live on. But that may give him too much credit. To survive, he must become next to nothing."

Yeah yeah, but don't forget the part where every other hero for sure bites it! Well, except Superman, but I guess that's a hell of a lot better than Ray's usual ranking in the super-hero hierarchy! Anywho, there's a surprisingly untiny Tiny Titan appearance in a double page spread group shot from the issue, courtesy of forced perspective. It looks like the Mighty Mite is evading Plastic Man's oncoming cranium...

From the Justice League Satellite, Red Tornado monitored the Earth. The android was alerted that his teammate Aquaman had gone missing, and passed the word along to Batman. The Dark Knight was occupied by a case involving the Riddler, who had stolen sensitive League data from the Batcomputer. Batman suggested Red Tornado contact the Martian Manhunter to investigate the Sea King’s disappearance until his own time freed up. The Tornado complied, returning to watching news reports of known super-villains turned humanitarian benefactors, offering extraordinary breakthroughs to the citizens of the world…

The entirety of the Justice League Satellite’s surveillance technology was unable to locate Aquaman. Red Tornado, as part of his duty as monitor, deployed the Manhunter from Mars to investigate. In the course of his search, the Sleuth from Outer Space also vanished, prompting the Tornado to rise to his artificial feet. “J’Onn? J’ONN? First Aquaman, now Martian Manhunter. Not a… Computer? Enhance southern South America.” Red Tornado followed up on reports from marine ships of unusual sea life migration patterns. Off the coast of Argentina, a pattern emerged—crosshairs that pinpointed the Sea King’s location. “You’re a clever man, Arthur.”

A figure had arrived through the teleportation tubes while this was going on, and made its way to Red Tornado, who anticipated the arrival. “I’m glad you’re here. I found Aquaman. He’s trapped in Argentina. Must be nice to have a psychic rapport with two-thirds of all life on Earth. I didn’t expect to be relieved for another two hours. What’s…?”

Suddenly, Red Tornado rose up from his seat and wrapped his own fingers around his neck. “What’s happening? Help me! I don’t know what’s… you need to shut me down!” The Tornado ripped his own head off, then continued tearing his body apart with his mechanical hands. “Someone’s controlling my motor functions! HELP ME! Why won’t you help me?!” Red Tornado’s bits and pieces lay on the monitor room floor, sitting in his internal fluids.

From his home in Ivy Town, Ray Palmer watched conservative commentator Jack Ryder on television, discussing “more reports of acts of miraculous and surprising philanthropy” from the world’s super-villain community…

The Legion of Doom began truly knocking down dominoes, claiming Earth's super friends had abandoned her, while covertly attempting to murder their alter egos.

At the Midway Museum, curators Carter and Shiera dodged the potentially lethal fire of replica prop planes. Making their way toward maces, the Hawks smashed the tiny aircraft. Above their heads, a giant Toyman marionette hovered...

A woman in sunglasses wearing camouflage carried a bag with her on a rooftop adjacent an Ivy University science building. The woman constructed a sniper rifle, then aimed it at a room where Professor Ray Palmer was working on a computer. The distraction of a phone call caused Palmer to shift his body just in time to avoid his brains spilling across the monitor, but the bullet wound in his right shoulder left a mess all its own. While Palmer bled out on the floor, the anxious voice at the other end of the phone line asked, “Ray? Is something wrong? Ray?

“Call… ambulance. Call Carter.”

Tearfully, Jean Loring dialed another number on her cell phone. 22,800 miles above the Earth, Red Tornado’s severed head sat on a counter, teleportation technology at the Justice League Satellite disengaged…

"Justice, Vol. 1," collecting the first four issues of the 2005 mini-series, was plotted and painted by Alex Ross. The script was provided by Jim Krueger, and the penciled layouts by Doug Braithwaite.