Updates and Such

Wow, it has been way too long since my last update.  Between holidays and work schedule changes 2016 has been an absolute rollercoaster so far!

But Spring is here and the world is rife with comic news!  With Edx preparing it’s next Superhero course and a new deluge of superhero movies preparing to hit theaters, it still is a very exciting time to be a comic book fan.

Until next time folks, keep it awesome!

The Scavangers – Return of Indian Superheroes

Why haven’t any of India’s Mightiest made it to the big screen? Super Commando Dhruv, Nagraj, Captain Vyom, and Shaktimaan want answers, and they find them in this hilarious video by the Indian comedy team Screen Patti.

Make sure to check out Screen Patti’s Youtube channel here

The World’s Mightiest Heroes – Nagraj “The Snake King”

This blog series was inspired by edx alumni Varun Rajagopalan and his awesome posts in the “Heroes Risen” facebook group.

In a culture so innundated with American superhero heavyweights like Superman and The Avengers, its easy for me to forget that there are heroes in other countries with the same amount of influence in their respective regions. Thankfully, with the ease of distribution only the internet can provide, heroes from across the globe are starting to make a big splash in the world wide comic book game.

This series will cover some of the most iconic superheroes from around the world, with diverse and intriguing back stories unique to each region’s culture.


Nagraj – The Snake King

Nagraj
Image courtesy of Siddartha Panwar of Raj Comics

Creators: Sanjay Gupta
Publisher: Raj Comics
Abilities: Super strength, super speed, flight, psychic powers, super healing, venemous bite/spit, weaponized snakes that he can draw out from his body.
Mythological Origin: Based on the Ichchhadhari Nag, a shape shifting snake, and a Vishmanushya (venemous human).

Comic Book Origin:
Converse to Nagraj’s main mission, the eradication of terrorism around the world, Nagraj himself was originally utlized as a weapon of terror being bought and sold to the highest bidder to complete various missions. Nagraj’s story starts with one of these missions, and under the mind control of Professor Nagmani, was sent to steal a golden statue from a temple. This temple was guarded by devotees, snakes, and a centuries old Sadhu (holy man) named Baba Gorakhnath.

Gorakhnath and his Black Mongoose Shikangi (warriors?) were able to defeat Nagraj, leading Gorakhnath to discover that Nagraj was being controlled by Professor Nagmani via a device implanted in Nagraj’s brain. Gorahnath was able to remove the device and free Nagraj. Shortly after, Nagraj became a disciple of Gorahnath, and pledged to fight crime and terrorism all over the world.

Nagraj currently lives as Raj (very similar to Superman’s alter ego, Clark Kent) in the fictional city Mahanagar as a Public Relations Officer at Bharti Communications.

Popularity: Considered one of Raj Comics flagship characters, Nagraj is one of the longest running superheroes and has become iconic in Indian Pop Culture.  In the late 90’s, Raj Comics attempted to bring Nagraj to the small screen with a live action series, but production was cancelled after the filming of only three episodes.  Word through the grapevine is Raj pulled the plug due to poor visual effects, but did later release the episodes for free in the Khalnayak Nagraj, Samraat, and Saudangi, trade paperbacks.

In 2006, Indiagames signed with Raj Comics to develop a mobile puzzle game featuring Nagraj and Bankeylal.  Unfortunately, I couldn’t find any other mention of this game other than shady third party app websites, so I was not able to verify if this game is live.

In 2007 there was talk of developing a Nagraj animated movie, and in 2010 a company called Planet41 was supposed to begin a mobile streaming and download service for Raj Comics animated films including the heroes Nagraj, Druva, and Doga.  Again, I was not able to find further information on this service.

Despite previous attempts to bring Nagraj to both the big and small screens, Nagraj enjoys a strong fanbase.  The loyalty of Nagraj fans can be seen in Raj Comics yearly “Comics Fest” events, and last year they celebrated 25 years with “Nagraj Janmotsav,” an event celebrating Nagraj specifically.


References:

Nagraj wikipedia page
Nagraj Indian Comics wiki page

The World’s Mightiest Heroes – Doga, “The One Man Army”

This blog series was inspired by edx alumni Varun Rajagopalan and his awesome posts in the “Heroes Risen” facebook group.

In a culture so innundated with American superhero heavyweights like Superman and The Avengers, its easy for me to forget that there are heroes in other countries with the same amount of influence in their respective regions. Thankfully, with the ease of distribution only the internet can provide, heroes from across the globe are starting to make a big splash in the world wide comic book game.

This series will cover some of the most iconic superheroes from around the world, with diverse and intriguing back stories unique to each region’s culture.


Doga- The One Man Army

Doga by Siddartha Panwar
Artwork courtesy of Siddartha Panwar of Raj Comics

Creators: Tarun Kumar Wahi, Sanjay Gupta, and Manu
Publisher: Raj Comics
Abilities: Ability to communicate with dogs to gain information, extensive strength and martial arts training, very high pain tolerance, weapons expert.

Origin: Doga (real name, Suraj), is the first, and currently only anti-hero in Raj Comics roster. Much like The Punisher, Doga is a vigilante, originally found abandoned at a garbage dump by the Dacoit (gang member) Daku Halkan Singh. Halken Singh “raised” Suraj, mostly treating him as a pet dog. During his childhood, Suraj was forced to witness various violent crimes and murders until he was eventually abandoned by Halken Singh, leaving Suraj a sociopath. Fortunately, Suraj was taken in by Adrak Chacha and his brothers that ran a local gym (called “Lion Gym”). While remaining with the brothers, Suraj experienced a loving family for the first time in his life and began training in various martial arts along with being trained as a marksman.

Tradgedy soon struck as a rival to Adrack Chacha’s gym named Killota, opened business and attempted to kill Adrack and his brothers to eliminate the competition. Suraj then assumed the title of Doga, and wearing a dog mask, eradicated Killota’s gang. Afterwards, Suraj settled in Mumbai and began his one man crusade against all organized crime, and much like America’s own Punisher, showed his prey no mercy.

Want to know more about the “One Man Army”? Check out Raj Comics for a complete list of titles.

Avengers Assemble on Stage Left: Marvel Universe Live! Comes to PPL Center in Allentown This Weekend

Marvel Universe Live
Image courtesy of Feld Entertainment

This weekend, the Lehigh Valley area will have a special treat at the PPL Center as the Hulk, Captain America, and several other Marvel heroes go toe to toe against the likes of Loki and Doctor Octopus in this INSANE stadium event.

Audiences can expect this show to run for about two hours (two acts with a 15 minute intermission in between) with tickets running anywhere from $20-$90 per seat. Live! also boasts an original story (though a bit linear) where the characters fight for control over the “Cosmic Cube” that threatens to destroy the entire Universe. Arial acrobatics are to be expected, alongside explosions, car chases, fight scenes and sweet Motocross tricks from previous X Games athletes.

Seven-time North American Women’s Trials Champion, Louise Forsley, joins the cast as Black Widow alongside Shakespearean actor Evans-Gan who plays The Hulk. This diversely talented bunch brings all their different acting strengths and talents to provide one hell of a show – so expect the little ones in the audience to lose their minds.

coutesy of Feld Entertaiment
Yeah, I would be loosing my mind too (Image courtesy of Feld Entertainment)

Showtimes for this weekend are Friday at 11:00am, Saturday at 3:00pm and 7:00pm, and Sunday at 1:00pm and 5:00pm
You can get your tickets at www.PPLCenter.com or call: 610-347-TIXX for more information.

Also be sure to check out Marvel Universe Live! at their official website to see if they are going to be playing in an area near you!

Netflix Reveals Daredevil Season 2 at NYCC and I Can’t Handle My Feels Right Now.

Ever since Daredevil released on Netflix last year, I have been LOSING MY MIND waiting to hear more news about “The Devil of Hell’s Kitchen.”  Well the wait is over, Illuminati confirmed, we got Elektra.  Let me repeat, WE NOW HAVE ELEKTRA.

As if having my favorite Sai wielding assassin wasn’t enough, crew members from the Daredevil set have nicknamed this season “Daredevil Vs. Punisher” which can mean only one thing…

Image courtesy of Marvel

It’s no news that Season 2 will be featuring Marvel’s favorite gun toting vigilante (who will be played by Joe Bernthal of The Walking Dead fame) but the rumor mill has been grinding away since last May with supposed leaked audition footage for the role of Elektra.  At their NYCC panel this past Saturday, Netflix finally dropped the bomb, and the role of Elektra Natchios will be played by Elodie Yung.

But wait, the Daredevil party train doesn’t stop there. The lovely Rosario Dawson has also been confirmed to reprise her role as Night Nurse in Season 2, and that role could soon be expanding into the other Defenders series, AKA Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist.

This is going to be awesome.

A Sass of Pre Teens: DC Super Hero Girls Universe is a Go

DC Superhero Girls
Image courtesy of DC comics

Warner Bros., DC, and Mattel have teamed up to create a fascinating initiative, the DC Super Hero Girls Universe.  Here, the companies have come together to form a multi faceted plan to help young girls (or perhaps, girls of any age) get in on some serious, super hero action.

In a similar vein to Mattel’s Monster High product line, they will be featuring not only dolls, but action figures as well. Combined with the doll product line, DC has also teamed up with Random House’s Children’s Books division to produce a line of mid grade reading level novels, alongside a graphic novel in the works (scheduled release in July 2016) featuring a sassy teenage Lex Luthor giving our Super Girls some trouble.

DC has also tapped their partners in the WB Animation Division alongside Mattel’s Playground Productions to produce a webseries that will air on the official DC Super Hero Girls website (first episode is already posted!) with the promise of more to come. The website also features quizzes, character bios, and an interesing flying game that reminds me a little of Flappy Bird, but with spandex and a golden lasso.

Visitors to this week’s Comic Con in New York can expect a special treat from the DC Super Girls booth located in the Javit Center’s Crystal Palace, including sneak peeks at the new doll/figure line, “unique” giveaways, and photo ops. October 8th (uwaaa, this happened before the writing of this article!!) in room 1B03 at 5:30pm, there will be a panel featuring a “behind the scenes look” and panelists from various portions of the DC Super Girls project.

The target demographic for this initiative is aimed at girls between the ages of 6-12, mainly centering around the characters attending “Super Hero High”, and all the ensuing hijinks accustomed to life as a pre-teen. This being said, I wouldn’t expect any re-imaginings of “Flashpoint Paradox” or “Crisis on Multiple Earths” any time soon.

For more information on the DC Super Girls project, check out DC’s press release.  Meanwhile, I’m going to work on my flying skills.