Batman: Nightwalker by Marie Lu

Summary:

Before he was Batman, he was Bruce Wayne. A reckless boy willing to break the rules for a girl who may be his worst enemy.

The Nightwalkers are terrorizing Gotham City, and Bruce Wayne is next on their list.

One by one, the city’s elites are being executed as their mansions’ security systems turn against them, trapping them like prey. Meanwhile, Bruce is turning eighteen and about to inherit his family’s fortune, not to mention the keys to Wayne Enterprises and all the tech gadgetry his heart could ever desire. But after a run-in with the police, he’s forced to do community service at Arkham Asylum, the infamous prison that holds the city’s most brutal criminals.

Madeleine Wallace is a brilliant killer . . . and Bruce’s only hope.

In Arkham, Bruce meets Madeleine, a brilliant girl with ties to the Nightwalkers. What is she hiding? And why will she speak only to Bruce? Madeleine is the mystery Bruce must unravel. But is he getting her to divulge her secrets, or is he feeding her the information she needs to bring Gotham City to its knees? Bruce will walk the dark line between trust and betrayal as the Nightwalkers circle closer.

The Review:

This is another book I was very excited for. I mean, one of my favorite authors writting one of my favorite superheros, of course I will be all for it. This is another of the DC Icons series in which YA authors write their own interpretations of popular DC characters.

This book, had a lot to live up to, seeing as Batman is one of my favorite heros, I love all things Batman, from the comics, movies and the videogames. This book is takes place when Batman was just a 18 year old teenager named Bruce Wayne who is basically living life as a rich kid, once he gets in trouble he is sent to Arkham Asylum to perform community service. In Gotham there was been a series of murders linked to a group called the Nightwalkers. He also meets a girl named Madeline, who is linked to the Nightwalkers.

What made this book work was that it truly felt like I was reading a Batman origin story. What makes Batman interesting is the psychological dilemma of Bruce Wayne, and there was some aspects of him dealing with his parents death. It shows that Bruce Wayne is more than just Batman.

I also like some of the Easter eggs related to the DC universe, one example is a pre-Two face Harvey Dent who is a classmate of Bruce, and also references to Metropolis.

I also got to see a lot of Detective Batman, which is mostly shown in comics and a little bit of the movies. He was also trying to find out the mystery of the Nightwalkers and how they commit their crimes. He finds a lot about it through Madeline, a Nightwalker staying in Arkham.

I thought the relationship between Bruce and Madeline was really well done, it really fleshed out her character and how she is with the Nightwalkers. Their relationship reminded me a lot of of anyone of Batmans other female villains, for example, Catwomen and Talia Al-Ghul, other villains he forms relationships with. Yeah, Batman pretty much has a type.

Madeline, was actually pretty fleshed, I read a lot about her back story and what mother wen, especially dealing with corruption within Gotham, and you could see why Bruce sees the good in her.

In the end, Batman: Nightwalker is everything I wanted to see in a sort of Batman origin story. It gave a great detective story in the Batman universe. I also felt that this is what Gotham should have been with a great character with Bruce Wayne.

Grade: 4.3/5

Wonder Woman Warbringer by: Leigh Bardugo

Summary:

Daughter of immortals.

Princess Diana longs to prove herself to her legendary warrior sisters. But when the opportunity finally comes, she throws away her chance at glory and breaks Amazon law—risking exile—to save a mortal. Diana will soon learn that she has rescued no ordinary girl, and that with this single brave act, she may have doomed the world.

Daughter of death.

Alia Keralis just wanted to escape her overprotective brother with a semester at sea. She doesn’t know she is being hunted by people who think her very existence could spark a world war. When a bomb detonates aboard her ship, Alia is rescued by a mysterious girl of extraordinary strength and forced to confront a horrible truth: Alia is a Warbringer—a direct descendant of the infamous Helen of Troy, fated to bring about an age of bloodshed and misery.

Together.

Two girls will face an army of enemies—mortal and divine—determined to either destroy or possess the Warbringer. Tested beyond the bounds of their abilities, Diana and Alia must find a way to unleash hidden strengths and forge an unlikely alliance. Because if they have any hope of saving both their worlds, they will have to stand side by side against the tide of war.

The Review:

This is the first book in the DC Icons series, which combines YA books and comic book characters written by popular YA authors. I was very excited to read this mainly because I love the character of Wonder Woman, and also this was by Leigh Bardugo, one of my favorite authors.

This book is also a very different interpretation of the character of Wonder Woman, while she does borrow elements from the comics, it does stand alone as its own thing. The story starts off in Themyscira, the home world where Diana is from, and it also starts her as a teenage girl rather than a full adult woman like the comics does. It was nice to see Themyscria and I also pictured it like the movie which is a an incredible world.

I like Leigh Bardugo’s interpretation of the character of Diana, while she is the daughter of the Queen and a princess, she still wants to do what’s right and try to protect the people she loves. She even makes a decisions to try to protect Alia, even if it means exile from Themyscria.

Alia is another main character of the story. She is said to be a descendant of Helen of Troy or the Warbringer. It is said that her existence causes war. After a shipwreck she is brought to shore by Diana who protects her and goes to New York with Alia in order to drain her power and bring an end to wars. Alia is a pretty good character, while I would have like to see her have a more kick ass role within the book, she does tend to hold her own, especially once they head to New York.

What I liked about the book was how it ties into the Greek mythology. I also liked how it fleshed out the story of Helen of Troy and how she was more than “the face that launched a thousand ships” She was a warrior of Sparta and when she became married to Menalaus she loss her identity as a person. It also had a lot more back story with Greek mythology that is often talked about in the comics but not fully fleshed out.

I felt the pacing could have been better. There was a lot of points within then book where it was a lot of waiting for the plot to finally pick up. While slow sections of a book is good, I felt in this case that it was a bit boring. I also wanted the book to have a little bit more action. While the museum fight was good, I kinda wanted a few more action scenes. Maybe its just me being spoiled by the movie and I could have used a nice “No Man’s Land” scene.

I also would have liked to see a more fleshed out friendship between Diana and Alia. While both of them are great characters I would have liked to see a friendship blossom rather than a protector-protectee relationship which the book had.

I did like the supporting characters; Nim, Theo and Jason. They each contributed to the story in their own way and had their mini arcs within the story in order to flesh out their characters. They also provided some back story with Alia. They also made the story a bit more grounded.

In the end, Wonder Woman Warbringer was a good book. While as a fan of Wonder Woman the comic character it was nice to see a different interpretation. I would recommended it to anyone who is new to comics. It provides a semi origin story of Diana Prince and I hope to see more in the future.

Grade: 3.6/5

Wonder Women Review

This was one of my most anticipated movies of the summer, and this is also one of first female led super hero movies in a while (the last one I think was Elektra), and this movie did not disappoint, in fact I think it is one of my favorite comic book movies.

This is also another movie in the DC Extended Universe, and this one focuses on the origin story of Wonder Women, who was first introduced in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. The story takes place during World War I, and Steve Trevor (Chris Pine) crash lands of Diana’s island of Themyscira. After finding out about World War I, Diana assumes that the atrocities were brought on by Ares, the God of War. Diana then goes with Steve to London to find Ares and hopefully stop the war.

After a rough start to the DCEU, this is the first film I enjoyed from start to finish, it delivered some great action set pieces. The first one was where the Germans invade Themyscira, it delivered a great action scene, and what made it great was that it involved a bunch of women kicking so much ass. My favorite is when Diana comes out of the trenches and is just holding the line, and my whole theater was clapping and cheering throughout that scene.

 

While I did have reservations about her initial casting, Gal Gadot was great as Wonder Women, and she really understood how the character is both strong, but also has emotions, which is the core of Wonder Women. Chris Pine was also good as Steve Trevor, and both Diana’s and Steve’s relationship was really well done and developed. When Diana first came to London, it provided a lot of humor which featured Diana trying to figure out the world around her.

I also did like the supporting such as Etta Candy (Lucy Davis), Steve’s secretary. She did provide some good comedic scenes, and I kinda wish she was in it more. I also liked Steve’s war buddies, which I reminded me a lot of the Howling Commando’s from Captain America. But I felt the villains were a bit underdeveloped, and I think that’s a problem with a lot of the recent superhero movies.

The direction was also very good. Patty Jenkins directed this movie, and this is one of the first superhero movies to have a female director, and she brought up the essence of Wonder Women, while some the action scenes had some slow mo, it didn’t feel like it was too much. I am so glad that she is signed up for Wonder Women 2, and I hope she could possibly direct Justice League 2.

What surprises me, was that it took this long to make a Wonder Women movie. While there has been female led super hero movies before, most of them were terrible, and the studios would see it as a risk. Hopefully thanks to the positive reception of this movie, we could see more female superhero movies, like, Captain Marvel, or a better Catwoman.

Wonder Women, was a fantastic movie that had me smiling the whole way through. It was not just a great female-led Superhero movie, but a great comic book movie.

Grade: A

Suicide Squad Movie Review

Hello everyone,

Here is another movie review for one of my most anticipated summer movies Suicide Squad.

If you read my trailer review you know how excited I was for the movie, and to be honest I actually enjoyed it.

Suicide Squad is a group of people from Task Force X who are recruited by Amanda Waller (Viola Davis) to do the tough jobs and be a fail safe if a worse version of Superman comes to Earth.

What made the movie good for me was the cast. The cast worked really well together and you actually cared about the characters and most of them had good arcs mainly El Diablo (Jay Hernandez). But the two stand outs were Deadshot (Will Smith) and Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie). I could see why Will Smith sat the Independence Day: Resurgence out. It was also exciting to see Harley Quinn in live-action for the first time and Margot Robbie did a great job at the portrayal. This movie also got a good performance out of Jai Courtney.

I also loved how the characters interacted with each other and seeing many difference personalities clash with each other, but also cares about each other and the bar scene really did a good job at establish their characters.

A negative that I have for this movie is the main villain. The villains plot as a average “take over the world” with a device that we seen in Avengers, X-Men Apocalypse and the Ninja Turtles. I also felt the villain was not as developed as I wanted it to be and it was your average comic book movie villain without a lot of depth. I also would have liked to see more Joker (Jared Leto), but since he wasn’t a part of the squad it is understandable why he wasn’t in the movie. While Heath Ledger and Mark Hamill are my favorite Jokers I think Leto did a good job at making the Joker his own.

I also felt some of the editing was a bit choppy and while some of the use of music worked well for the movie, there was other times that it felt a bit tacked on.

In the end I thought the movie was really good and I felt the critics were a bit harsh on the movie. I felt the positives outweighed the negatives and I still liked the movie.

Grade: B+

 

Comic Con 2016 Trailer Reviews-Movies

Hello everyone,

This week was Comic-Con, which meant new trailers to upcoming movies, I was going to do one trailer at a time, but I decided to do one part which will be movies and tomorrow I will talk about the TV shows.

The first trailer I want to talk about is Doctor Strange.

Like Guardians of The Galaxy before this, I don’t have much knowledge about the character outside from a few crossovers with other comics. But judging by the trailer, this looks visually spectacular. Benedict Cumberbatch looks great as Doctor Strange and I am excited to see it.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

I already talked about the first trailer. Click here. But I am very excited for this movie, mainly because I want to see an expanded universe of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

Wonder Women

While the reception of Batman v Superman was mixed at best, one of the main highlights was Gal Godot as Wonder Women. This trailer got me the most excited. It gave us color in the DCEU and the action scenes looks great. It also made me wonder what Thor: The Dark World would have looked liked if Patty Jenkins stayed on as director. But this movie also has a lot to live up to because this is first female-led comic book movie in years, and most of the female-led have been really bad. But this trailer gives me hope for female-led comic book movies.

Justice League

This is the DCEU answer to Marvels Avengers. While the reception for Batman v Superman was mixed, it seems like the DCEU is answering the criticisms, like adding more color and some lightness without being very grim dark like the previous movies.  I also liked scene that introduced Barry Allen as the Flash. While I am a fan of Grant Gustin’s Flash for the CW series, I just have to accept that the universes are not connected. Hopefully both Wonder Women and Justice League will fix some of the problems the DCEU and could compete with the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Those are my thoughts on the trailer. Do you have any favorite trailers from Comic-Con? Let me know in the comments below.

Suicide Squad Trailer Review

BEST USE OF BOHEMIAN RHAPSODY!!! In yesterdays CW special Dawn of the Justice we were shown a new trailer for the upcoming movie Suicide Squad.

Suicide Squad is group of bad guys assembled by Amanda Waller (Viola Davis) in order to do the black ops missions that no one can. They include Deadshot (Will Smith) Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie) Captain Boomerang (Jai Courtney), Slipknot (Adam Beach), Killer Croc (Adewale Akinnouye-Agdaje) and Rick Flagg (Joel Kinnamen).

A real stand out in the trailer is the Joker played by Jared Leto. Initially he got some backlash due to the photos with him and tattoos. But this trailer made me excited to see Leto as the Joker, and even though he is not Heath Ledge; like most Jokers before him plays him a different.

The music in the trailer, like I said best use of Bohemian Rhapsody, and highlights how crazy the movie looks and feels.

This trailer makes me really excited for the movie and hopes this could start a new trend for comic book movie in which the villains are the heroes.