Tag Archives: Loki

25 Greatest Comic Character Portrayals (First Revision)

It’s been a couple of years since I made the first edition of this list. With the plethora of new comic films that have been released since then, several of which have introduced us to new characters or at least new takes on established ones, I figured it was time to dust off the old list and give her a revision. As before, I looked at a combination of performances that stayed true to the comic counterpart and just plain old great acting to create a compelling character. Some of them lean more towards one side of the equation, but I feel like all of them touch on at least a little of both. Some portrayals have risen in the ranks, some have fallen, and several fell off all together. Also like before, with several of these characters having been played by multiple people, I list the actor and what movie(s)/television show the portrayal is in.

Portrayals that fell off from the previous list:
Michael Sullivan (Tom Hanks) – Road to Perdition, Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone) – The Amazing Spider-Man, Marv (Mickey Rourke) – Sin City, Professor X (Patrick Stewart) – X-Men, Superman (Christopher Reeves) – Superman, Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) – Marvel Cinematic Universe, Jim Gordon (Gary Oldman) – The Dark Knight trilogy

25. The Flash (Grant Gustin) – The Flash

When Harry Met Harry...

 

24. Erik Killmonger (Michael B. Jordan) – Black Panther

michael-b-jordan-killmonger-portrait-1500x1000

 

23. Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) The Walking Dead

PR_TWD_704_01

 

22. X-23 (Dafne Keen) – Logan

lauras-claws-in-the-new-movie-logan

 

21. Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) – The Walking Dead

the-walking-dead-hardcover-ruled-journal-rick-grimes-9781608876068.in02

 

20. Rocket Raccoon (Bradley Cooper) – Marvel Cinematic Universe

rocket-raccoon

 

19. Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell) – Marvel Cinematic Universe

Peggy-Carter

 

18. Kilgrave (David Tennant) – Jessica Jones

Kilgrave

 

17. V (Hugo Weaving) – V for Vendetta

v-for-vendetta-img-2

 

16. Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) – Marvel Cinematic Universe

bb057433c7770e967e8c28e15c6bb6a2

 

15. The Comedian (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) – Watchmen

The_Comedian

 

14. Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman) – Marvel Cinematic Universe

BlackPanther596d2f04d1540_2040.0

 

13. Rorschach (Jackie Earle Haley) – Watchmen

watchmen15

 

12. Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) – X-Men

hugh-jackman-the-wolverine

 

11. Spider-Man (Tom Holland) – Marvel Cinematic Universe

Spider-Man-Homecoming

 

10. Loki (Tom Hiddleston) – Marvel Cinematic Universe

loki-avengers-0

 

9. Deadpool (Ryan Reynolds) – Deadpool

DEADPOOL

 

8. Thanos (Josh Brolin) – Marvel Cinematic Universe

tmp_sFnes9_6807fd5b51198b20_InfinityWar5ac2dbd3a2f43

 

7. Kingpin (Vincent D’Onofrio) – Daredevil (TV series)

daredevil-fisk-vincent-donofrio-image

 

6. Daredevil (Charlie Cox) – Daredevil (TV series)

daredevil-watching-recommendation-videoSixteenByNineJumbo1600-v4

 

5. Batman (Christian Bale) – The Dark Knight trilogy

batman-begins

 

4. Captain America (Chris Evans) – Marvel Cinematic Universe

captain-america-1940x900_36115

 

3. Iron Man (Robert Downey, Jr) – Marvel Cinematic Universe

1499098963-iron-man

 

2. J. Jonah Jameson (J.K. Simmons) – Spider-Man

14-JJonahJamesonSpider-Man

 

1. The Joker (Heath Ledger) – The Dark Knight

screen shot 2015-08-11 at 2.45.34 pm

 

So what do you think? Who’s too low? Who’s too high? Who got left off that shouldn’t have been? Let me know in the comments.

Advertisements

The Avengers: Infinity War Predictions

gallery-1521208645-infinity-war-poster

With Marvel’s The Avengers: Infinity War just a week away, the culmination of the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe to this point is almost here. You’d be hard-pressed to go anywhere online without finding some talk about the movie going on. And with good reason. It is without question the most ambitious undertaking in the history of cinema. Leading the threads of nine separate series into one enormous, inter-connected franchise has been nothing short of incredible. The fact that over the span of 18 films with 15 different directors Marvel has rarely fumbled in delivering high quality, enjoyable entertainment would be reason enough for celebration on their part, but to have done so while weaving together a world of gods, super soldiers, aliens, spies, and genius billionaire playboy philanthropists, is truly amazing.

avengers-infinity-war-trailer-breakdown-analysis-thanos-infinity-gauntlet_106

For all 10 years of its existence, Marvel Studios has been building to this moment…to Thanos and the Infinity Gauntlet. Based loosely on Infinity Gauntlet, the 1991 limited series by Jim Starlin that saw the powerful titan Thanos collect the six Infinity Gems (changed to Stones in the MCU) that each contain the essence of and grant control to the possessor of a different facet of the universe: Mind, Power, Reality, Soul, Space, and Time. For all intents and purposes, to wield them all is to be like God…though Marvel’s actual version of God, the One-Above-All, is still more powerful as he exists outside of reality and time. Thanos uses his new found omnipotence to wipe out half the life in the universe to balance the scales as a tribute to Death, with whom he is desperately in love. This obviously draws the attention of Marvel’s heroes as well as a few villains and more neutral cosmic beings. An alliance of them all faces off against Thanos with him easily defeating/killing almost all of them, taking some serious manipulation and reverse psychology to finally get the Gauntlet from his hand, allowing Adam Warlock to reverse all the destruction Thanos had caused.

infinity-gauntlet-kapak
The main question surrounding Infinity War is “who will survive.” With the contracts of several of the main actors in the MCU coming to an end, and one (Chris Evans) having said he’s looking to retire from acting to focus on directing, many believe that a lot of the old guard like Captain America, Iron Man, and Thor are on borrowed time. I have my own theories on what to expect in this monumental event.

null

Personally, I don’t expect as many major deaths in this film as most seem to. That is not said as a slight to Marvel Studios for fearing to pull the trigger on killing off their major properties as I’ve read several Marvel-haters imply. I simply believe that with Avengers 4 coming out next year and acting as a 2nd half to this story, that that is when we will see the bulk of superhero slaughter. I see Infinity War as focusing on Thanos and his quest to collect all the Infinity Stones. There will obviously be resistance from our merry band of heroes, and I do believe we will see a few deaths in the process, but not on the scale that many are expecting.

infinity-war14-1
One hero whose days are all but surely numbered is Vision. The sentient android is literally walking around with the Mind Stone on his forehead. Unless he finds a way to survive without it, he’s going to have to die for Thanos to complete the Gauntlet. I also have a suspicion that Loki may meet his end in the film, possibly very early on. In the mid-credit stinger from Thor: Ragnarok we see the ship that now carries all of the Asgardian people intercepted by an enormous spaceship that clearly carries the design of Thanos’s helmet on the front. We can assume then that the ship is that of the Mad Titan himself…probably there to collect the Tesseract which houses the Space Stone. While we never actually saw Loki take the Tesseract from Odin’s vault, it clearly caught his attention on his way to resurrect Surtur in the Eternal Flame. We also see in the trailers for Infinity War that Loki appears to be holding the Tesseract and offering it up to someone. This leads me to believe that Thanos will board their ship and start killing Asgardians trying to find the Stone…a battle that I believe will result in Thor being thrown from the ship (as he’s seen floating in space and discovered by the Guardians of the Galaxy in the first trailer). Loki, finally heeding his brother’s words that he could be more than just the God of Mischief, will offer it to him in exchange for sparing his people. I see Thanos accepting the deal, but then turning around and killing Loki instead. With Loki sacrificing himself, he’ll finally be the savior of Asgard with the admiration of his people he always desired.

9b2d5214-242a-4d78-b3d3-ee51fed5a13f-infinity_trailer_loki

Outside of those two, I don’t believe any of the major characters perish in this film. I can see several of the supporting characters meeting their end, like Dr. Strange’s fellow sorcerer, Wong, or some of the secondary characters from Black Panther, as there definitely seems to be a large scale battle taking place in Wakanda, with Thanos even squaring off with Cap in one of the most truly epic snippets in any of the trailers.

277d2ad5-4ad8-483b-aa10-63b85c881a6b-screen-shot-2018-04-16-at-24019-pm

So who do you think will die in Infinity War? We’ll find out if I’m right next week. I’ve got my ticket for the preview night on the 26th. I’ll try to have a review out the following day. See you then.

Top 5 Rogues Galleries in Comics – #5

Due to there being a 3-way tie for 5th place in the poll, it took awhile to actually decide a top 5. But we finally have it sorted out. So without further ado, let’s get started on the countdown of the greatest collection of villains, as voted on by you.

We begin our journey with Marvel’s primary supergroup:

The Avengers

pp5qq7iisexdlzwp0iay

Earth’s Mightiest Heroes don’t have quite as lenghty a list of major adversaries as some of the other protagonists in the poll, but the level of a threat that their villains typically pose is quite high. Which makes sense considering that the whole point of The Avengers is to deal with threats that no hero could handle individually.

 

annihilation_conquest_vol_1_5_textless

Atop their list would be Ultron, an android bent on the annhilation of the human race. Created by Hank Pym, and given his brain patterns, Ultron is as brilliant as he is powerful. Equipped with an army of drones that all share a hive mind, a myriad of laser weapons, the ability to control and/or transfer his memory and personality into other mechanical devices remotely, and an exoskeleton made of the virtually indestructible metal adamantium, it’s not difficult to see why he has remained such a constant thorn in the side of The Avengers.

 

89a103559c1f1c938dea9433b981f9dd

Not far behind Ultron on the list of Avengers baddies would be the maniacal Kang the Conqueror. Using time-traveling technology from the 30th Century, Kang (who is a decendant of Mr. Fantastic, with connections to Dr. Doom as well) travels from one time period to the next attempting to establish himself as ruler. Even though he possesses no actual superpowers, his genius-level intellect, his knowledge and skills in physics and engineering, and armor and technology from far more scientifically advanced times, Kang has been a major villain for several of Marvel’s heroes, but most notably The Avengers.

 

masters-of-evil-2010colorlr

Essentially the antithesis of The Avengers would be the Masters of Evil, a team of major, and sometimes not so major, villains banded together to destroy their heroic counterpart. While the team has gone through several incarnations, it is usually lead by prominent Captain America big bad Baron Zemo. The first villains to really bring the fight to The Avengers instead of the other way around, they have attacked The Avengers Mansion on several occassions.

 

735953-taskmaster_paco_medina05

It would be very easy to dismiss The Taskmaster as a major player, but that would be a mistake. While he has no superpowers outside of “photographic reflexes”, the ability to absorb, recall, and replicate knowledge and information instantaneously. This allows him to mimic and predict the movements and tendencies of any hero he sees. His in-depth observation of The Avengers has allowed him to replicate the hand-to-hand combat skills and athleticism of Black Panther, Daredevil, Iron Fist, and Captain America, as well as Cap’s abilities with his shield, the marksmanship of Hawkeye and Black Widow, and the swordsmanship of the Black Knight. It may not seem like much, but he has proven time and time again to be a threat worthy of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes.

 

loki-art

While he is most notably a villain of Thor, Loki has been a significant adversary of The Avengers as well. In fact he inadvertantly lead to the creation of the team. He had used The Hulk as a puppet to try to get revenge on Thor. Eventually his deceit is discovered and Rick Jones, Hulk’s sometimes sidekick, reaches out to Iron Man, Ant-Man, and The Wasp to assist them in defeating Loki. From that moment on, he has remained a fly in the ointment of The Avengers.

 

38ed1ec60774ae20a8df0c7e05ad2319

Arguably the greatest single threat to the Marvel Universe was Thanos when he wielded the Infinity Gauntlet. Granted virtual omnipotence from the Gauntlet, heroes (and even a few villains) from across the galaxy joined forces lead by The Avengers in an attempt to stop Thanos from destroying all life in the universe. Even after his defeat in the Infinity War, The Avengers have continued to battle The Mad Titan over his obsession with death.

100 Greatest Comic Characters of All Time – Part 11

50. Thanos

Thanos

Possessing incredible superhuman strength and endurance, telekinesis, a brilliant scientific and strategic mind, and an obsession with the embodiment of Death, the being known as the Mad Titan is one of the most formidable in all comics. Unique among major villains in that he is not the nemesis of any one particular hero. Through his callousness and attempts to impress Lady Death, Thanos has crossed paths with virtually all cosmic heroes, and just about all of the Earth-based ones as well. Never was he more powerful than when he located all six of the Infinity Gems and created the Infinity Gauntlet, granting him control over reality, time, space, power, the mind, and the soul. He was omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent…basically the most powerful being to ever exist.

49. Scarlet Witch

Scarlet Witch

The daughter of Magneto and twin sister of fellow mutant hero Quicksilver. As her name would imply, Wanda Maximoff has the ability to cast all sorts of spells and hexes, but what makes her truly powerful is her ability to alter and control reality itself. So incredible is this power that in the “Decimation” story arc, with the utterance of the simple phrase “No more mutants,” Scarlet Witch wiped out about 99% of the world’s mutant population. With her mutant genetics, she has had short stints with some of Marvel’s X-teams, but she is most often portrayed as a long-standing member of The Avengers. Her tenure with Earth’s Mightiest Heroes eventually lead her to a romantic relationship with the android Vision.

48. Loki

Loki

The Norse god of mischief, Loki is the adopted son of Odin and brother of Thor. Loki desires for nothing more than power and control. He believes that his brother is a brash, hot-headed, brainless warmonger who is far less fit for the throne of Asgard than he. Because of this the relationship with his adoptive brother is almost always one of contention, though they have worked together one more than one occasion. Loki is also responsible for the creation of The Avengers, as events he set in motion necessitated several of Earth’s heroes banding together to stop them.

47. Captain Marvel (Shazam)

Shazam

DC Comics’ Captain Marvel, though due to a lawsuit with Marvel Comics, he is otherwise known as Shazam. When the child Billy Batson utters the word “Shazam!” he transforms into an adult with power that rivals that of Superman. He is virtually immortal and invincible, can shoot and control lightning, has a genius-level intellect, can fly, and possesses superhuman strength and speed. While Captain Marvel is typically regarded as a character from a bygone era, he was never more modern or relevant (or dangerous) than he was in Alex Ross and Mark Waid’s masterpiece Kingdom Come, when he is manipulated and controlled by Lex Luthor into a climactic showdown with the Man of Steel…a fight that eventually leads to the death of nearly all of DC’s heroes.

46. Archie Andrews

Archie

Another iconic character from a simpler time. The last holdover from the days of wholesome, strictly family-friendly comics. Portrayed as the all-American boy-next-door, Archie Andrews and the comic that shares his name epitomized the look and feel of the 1940’s and 50’s. Unlike most comic characters, whose appearances change slightly depending on the artist, Archie and the rest of the gang from Riverdale have remained mostly the same throughout the vast majority of their 70-plus years of existence. Only in the recent years was a change made to make the characters appear more current. The cartoonish style in which the characters were drawn has become synonymous with the characters themselves, leading people to refer to it as the “Archie-style.” Archie is also notable in that he is the only major comic character to have an entire publication company named after it.

You Will Never Find a More Wretched Hive of Scum and Villainy (Part 4)

“The 25 Greatest Comic Book Villains of All-Time” continues with #15-#11.

15. Sinestro (Green Lantern)

sinestro

Once considered one of the greatest members of the Green Lantern Corps, and Hal Jordan’s mentor, when it was discovered that he was using his power as a means to rule over his home planet, he was banished to the Antimatter Universe. Feelingly wronged by the Green Lanterns, he grew to hate them and vowed revenge. The inhabitants of the Antimatter Universe, who also hated the Corps, created a yellow power ring that granted him the same abilities as a Green Lantern, but powered by fear instead of courage. He managed to escape and began his campaign against the Lanterns. He is completely demented, having wiped out entire planets just to display his power. He is also responsible for the freeing of the Corps other nemesis: the embodiment of fear, Parallax.

14. Mystique (X-Men)

Mystique

With the ability to look and sound like anyone, Mystique is the ultimate spy and infiltrator. This power alone makes her a formidable opponent, but she’s also an excellent hand-to-hand combatant and a skilled marksman. When Magneto left the Brotherhood of Mutants, Mystique picked up the reigns of the X-Men’s evil counterpart. She is a violent defender of mutantkind and views any opposition to them as a direct threat. In the “Days of Future Past” story arc, her penchant for assassinating political figures who campaigned against mutants lead to mutants and all other super powered beings being hunted down. Her history with several of the X-Men runs very deep and personal. She is Nightcrawler’s biological mother, and the adoptive mother of Rogue. Her relationship with the latter is particularly tumultuous due to Mystique forcing her as a child to use her lifeforce-absorbing ability to nearly kill the super hero Ms. Marvel.

13. Two-Face (Batman)

twoface

When half of his face was horribly disfigured during a failed mob hit, district attorney Harvey Dent went mad and developed a dual personality and began calling himself Two-Face. He also became obsessed with the number 2 and duality in general. Using his iconic double-sided coin to make decisions, he believes that chance is the only thing true in the world. While he doesn’t have the long track record of mayhem against the Bat-family and their allies like The Joker or the singular defining moment like Bane, his relationship with Batman is just as intriguing because while Two-Face is one of the most deadly and violent men in Gotham, there is a part of him that is still the old Harvey Dent. Because of this, Batman is torn between wanting to stop Two-Face’s criminal operations and hopes that one day he can be rehabilitated.

12. The Red Skull (Captain America)

Red Skull

The battle between Johann Schmidt and Captain America dates all the way back to World War II when Schmidt was a high-ranking Nazi officer. Originally an ordinary man, he was no match for the abilities of the Star Spangled Avenger. He had to rely on his mastery of strategy to combat Steve Rogers. However, he eventually had his mind placed into a body that had been cloned from Captain America. Now on the same physical level as his nemesis, The Red Skull became even more dangerous an adversary. Even though he has died multiple times, due to the technology of the criminal organization HYDRA, Schmidt can never really be considered dead. Whenever one body dies, his mind is simply placed into another cloned body, making him for all intents and purposes immortal. Following the events of the Marvel Civil War, with Captain America arrested and in chains, Schmidt seized the opportunity to deal a final blow to his long-time foe: under Red Skull’s employ, fellow Cap enemy Crossbones assassinates Steve Rogers on the steps of the Capital. A battle that had spanned nearly seven decades was over…that is of course until Marvel brought Captain America back to life…

11. Loki (Thor)

Loki

The God of Mischief and Chaos from Norse mythology. Loki is the constant fly in the ointment of his adoptive brother Thor. He grew jealous of the adulation that his brother received from his feats of strength and courage in battle, and blames Thor for “stealing” the affection and respect of their father Odin. Convinced that he should be the heir to the throne of Asgard, he will do anything to humiliate, shame, and/or kill the God of Thunder. Due to Thor’s love of its people, Loki began causing trouble in Midgard (Earth). So dangerous were his schemes that they eventually lead to the formation of The Avengers when several of Earth’s heroes banded together to stop him.

Up next: #10-6…