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    Cosmic Treadmill - Reviewing NIGHTWING V. 5: SETTING SON with a Side Order of GRAYSON at FORCES OF GEEK

    I’m a Bat-family loyalist, reading weekly Bat-titles, even when they fall off the rails a bit (Detective Comics) or even reach into my pockets weekly for some drawn out something or other (Batman Eternal).

    I’m also a Batgirl fan and am giving the new ‘’Burnside’ creative team a shot.

    One book I personally passed on the New 52 shelves was Nightwing.

    Perhaps I didn’t like his new costume — but was it really that offensive to my sensibilities?

    At any rate, I visited Kyle Higgin’s Nightwing Vol. 1 eventually, snaking a deal on the trade.  Not bad…but then another break.

    With a ‘Villain’s month’, Forever Evil and Zero Year, the New 52 has an inherent problem with it’s regularly programmed books this year.

    How does one randomly pick up Nightwing Vol. 5: Setting Son without wanting to pack up and move far away from The New 52 like Grayson himself?

    I attempted to do this, and like an acrobat there were highs and lows from this book. 

    Thankfully, more tricks were landed than fell into the net.

    Writers: Kyle Higgins, Tim Seeley, Tom King
    Art: Various
    Publisher: DC Comics
    Price $16.99
    UPC:      978140125011951699
    Release Date: 12/10/14

    Pre-Order HERE 

    Nightwing Vol. 5: Setting Son collects the final issues of Nightwing #25-30 plus Nightwing Annual #1.

    My main criticism as a volume overall are the aforementioned inconsistencies and obvious problems with injecting crossover events into a planned out story arc.

    In my opinion, most of the Zero Year stories could have been contained to the main Batman book but this Nightwing story fits in to continuity well.

    I’m reminded of Batman: Year Three in which the Robin story is told revealing secrets of the circus and The Flying Graysons. 

    In this flashback, the superstar teenager defies his parents and ditching his parents to catch a movie in Gotham solo. Our proto-Robin saves the day and there is even a costume origin — tidbits I devour when flashback stories are told. Will Conrad nails the art, Higgins tells a great story.

    It should be stated that while this might appear to be collected edition — and it is, this is more a collection of single issues, much like nearly every volume of The New 52 Superman (see the wildly erratic Vol. 4 Psi-War for example). Other top selling titles maintain a great level of integrity —even if artists change for an issue or two — like Batman, The Flash and Batman/Superman

    Next up — Batgirl in Nightwing Annual #1. The on-again/off-again relationship tension is addressed as the two team up to take on a Scooby mystery of Hollywood proportions. The cute Robin/Batgirl selfie flashback is the backbone to the Dick/Babs vignette.



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    Review by Clay N Ferno
    Produced by Brett Ratner, Jay Stern, John Morris
    Screenplay by Sean Anders, John Morris
    Story by John Francis Daley, Jonathan Goldstein, 
    Sean Anders, John Morris
    Directed by Sean Anders
    Starring Jason Bateman, Charlie Day, Jason Sudeikis, 
    Jennifer Aniston, Jamie Foxx, Chris Pine,
    Christoph Waltz, Jonathan Banks, Kevin Spacey

    Hollywood returns to the well once again for another sequel that questions it’s own existence!

    Thankfully, the familiar television and movie stars making up the ensemble cast do have their moments, and Horrible Bosses 2 isn’t a complete waste of time.

    Jason Bateman, Jason Sudeikis and Charlie Day reprise their roles as Nick, Kurt and Dale and become their own bosses unleashing a new product “The Shower Buddy” onto the world.

    Jennifer Aniston and Kevin Spacey return as well, along with mastermind “Motherfucker” Jones — Jamie Foxx.

    Added this time around are the father/son team of leading man Chris Pine and Basterd Chrisopher Waltz. 

    For schlock value, if you like to tune out here’s a movie for you, with some funny moments but the spark isn’t as bright as the original concept or the director Sean Ander’s last effort behind the camera, Adam Sandler’s That’s My Boy.


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    Produced by Brett Culp,Tricia Culp, 
    Matt Andrews, Josh Costella, Ian del Carmen, 
    Vasilis K. Pozios, 5th Element Events, Sultan Saeed 
    Al Darmaki, Sultan Al Saud, Southeast Psych
    Written and Directed by Brett Culp
    Starring Michael Uslan, Denny O’Neil, 
    Lenny B Robinson, Jill Pantozzi, Kye Sapp, 
    Petaluma Batman, Rabbi Cary Friedman, 
    Dr. Travis Langley, Gotham Chopra, 
    Brian Elliott, Patrick O’Connor, Daniel Scott

    As a side dish to your binge-watch of Batman ’66 DVDs we present to you Legends of the Knight from Virgil Films. The documentary takes a look at people passionate to a fault about the Caped Crusader on his 75th Anniversary.

    From Batman film franchise executive producer Michael Uslan’s story, to the one-legged breakdancing Daniel Scott to Lenny Robinson — “Maryland Batman”, each vignette tells the story of people making the world better as if Batman were real.

    Brett Culp’s touching documentary shows the side of fandom not exploited by cosplay press, but the human side of using Batman as an inspiration to make the world a better place.

    As an avatar of justice for the past seventy-five years, Batman has meant a lot to a lot of different people.

    This documentary explores how a fictional character like Batman is a real life role model to kids and adults across the world. Sure, Adam West, Christian Bale, Michael Keaton and the rest are all very different models on the screen, but the essence of Batman as a hero is always the same.

    Like a perpetual “It Gets Better” campaign, Batman is lurking in the shadows to show kids that the impossible is possible and to do what is right.


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    Twirl, Twirl, Twirl! Wonder Woman has a new creative team in Meredith & David Finch! Wonder Woman #36 guest stars Swamp Thing, check out the Lego Variant cover! …Over at Marvel, Jessica Drew aka Spider-Woman gets a new number one spinning out of the Spider-Verse with new hero Silk. Get tangled up in Drew! … Due to overwhelming response, this week’s Lumberjanes #8 is not the last issue! These 5 teenage girls hunting monsters in the woods is exactly what you need in your life! Ride the Jane train and get caught up on this exciting new series from Boom! Studios. … All-ladies hero comic book week brought to you by

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    Birdman: Following The Superhero Actor’s Trajectory - at


    I had expected Alejandro González Iñárritu’s Birdman to be a little on the nose as far as following the career of Michael Keaton. I was pleasantly surprised to find out this was not the case. Keaton has continued to act and be successful since his Batman of 1986, and remains a respected and relevant actor even if not as active as he once was. Keaton plays Riggan Thompson, once famous for his roles inBirdman I, II & III (presumably things went down hill for Riggan when he refused to cash in on the opportunity to do Birdman IV  analogue to the Batman franchise and the Schumacher bombasts to follow the gritty Tim Burton Dark Knight interpretation. Riggan finds himself struggling to stay in the spotlight on Broadway, producing, directing and starring in his own play “What We Talk About When We Talk About Love” by Raymond Carver.

    Another superhero movie actor, (arguably three, all told) stars in the film, Edward Norton. Norton’s own relationship with his Marvel superhero, The Incredible Hulk (2008) is complex as he was replaced unceremoniously by Mark Ruffalo in The Avengers (2012). Norton’s arrogance off screen is perhaps a reason he was replaced, and here in Birdman he plays a well known stage actor Mike Shiner, struggling to inject realism on the stage playing opposite his girlfriend Lesley (Naomi Watts). Shiner drinks real gin on stage, throws tantrums and is just a real dick to everyone. Perhaps it is because he can’t get it up!

    Zach Galifianakis plays Riga’s agent and astraight man this time around. As comic artist Ray Hueston in HBO’s Bored to Death, he played the alter ego of Super Ray — a hero that can fight with his enlarged penis!





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