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MARVEL DIGITAL COMICS SHOP: STOREWIDE BUY ONE GET ONE SALE!

MARVEL DIGITAL COMICS SHOP: STOREWIDE BUY ONE GET ONE SALE! CATCH UP ON BEST-SELLERS & NEW TITLES WITH THIS LIMITED TIME OFFE...

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Daktari: The Complete First Season DVD Review

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Daktari: The Complete First Season DVD Review



Synopsis: An orphaned baby elephant? A lion with a brain tumor? Call Dr. Marsh Tracy! This lovingly remembered show from executive producer Ivan Tors (Sea Hunt, Flipper, Gentle Ben) stars Marshall Thompson as a dedicated veterinarian who runs an animal research center in Africa with the help of his daughter, two courageous aides, a mischievous chimp and a cross-eyed lion named Clarence. Action, laughs and breathtaking encounters with exotic animals highlight the 18 Episodes of the Complete Season One as Tracy and his crew handle everything from poachers to diamond thieves to a raging fire that threatens the nearby game preserve. “Daktari” means “doctor” in Swahili, but for viewers it means uplifting family fun!

Review: Our family is animal crazy.  In fact, we run our own little zoo in our home, lol.  Dogs, cats, reptiles, birds, fish..whatever you can imagine.  If your family loves animals, then Daktari is for you!  This show is being released for the first time by the Warner Archive, and its a great watch.  The tales of this vet and his daughter are heart warming, fun and great for any family.  In an era where is hard to find shows for the entire family, the complete first season of this one would be a wonderful purchase for you.

Interest Range: Vintage TV, Animals

The Wave DVD Review

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The Wave DVD Review



Synopsis: Germany today. During project week, a popular and unorthodox high school teacher, in an attempt to stir up his lethargic students, devises an experiment that will explain what totalitarianism is and how it works. What begins with harmless notions about discipline and community builds into a real movement: The Wave. Within days, The Wave s uniformly attired students begin ostracizing and threatening others, and violence boils just below the surface. Sensing danger, the teacher decides to break off the experiment. But it may be too late The Wave has taken on a life of its own and is out of control. Based on a true story, THE WAVE chillingly shows just how easily the seeds of fascism can be sown.

Review: The Wave is a fantastic german film that shows us the dangers of modern day facism.  In the day and age when the tea party has emerged and racism is on the rise, we can see splinter factions coming up in politics again.  If you couple that with a precarious economic situation you can quickly invite in a terrible regime in exchange for some security.  The Wave is a fantastic look into what could happen if things got out of control.  A great watch and very relevant.

Interest Range: Drama

Kidnapped DVD Review

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Kidnapped DVD Review



Synopsis: The most astounding and uncompromising film of the year, Miguel Angel Vivas KIDNAPPED is a masterpiece of tension and all-too-realistic violence. Jaime and Marta, along with their teenage daughter Isa, move into a gorgeous new home with the hopes of beginning a beautiful new phase of their life together. It s the dream of every hard-working family: a comfortable life in a place of their own. But the dream is shattered when a gang of masked men break in and take the entire family hostage, demanding Jaime hand over everything he has in the bank or watch his wife and daughter die. And so begins an unimaginable ordeal for Jaime and his family.  Winner of Best Picture and Best Director honors at Fantastic Fest 2010, KIDNAPPED has been declared impeccably crafted, flawlessly performed (Todd Brown, TwitchFilm.com) and a new genre classic. (John Fallon, Arrow In The Head).

Review: Kidnapped is not for the faint of heart.   If you're a fan of home invasion film, then this one may appeal to you.  The only thing is that this spanish-made film is a far cry more graphic!  This one has the basic character stereotypes and plot that you might imagine, but the violence and tone are there and it far surpasses its contemporaries, like "Funny Games", in that you get to see far more of the brutality involved.  If you have a strong stomach and a dark mind, you're gonna love this one.

Video:

Interest Range: Drama

Exclusive Smallville Shirt and Figure at Best Buy!

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When you buy Smallville Season 10 you get an exclusive T-shirt or you can get an exclusive action figure by purchasing the complete series DVD set!

Lego Batman The Video Game 2 Coming Soon...

Pic courtesy of Bricktuts.com

The Walking Dead Talk: Sophia!

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So Dead fans..they found Sophia...and it was one of the most emotional moments of the show yet!  What did you think?  Send your thoughts in to toylegion.com @ gmail.com and we'll post the best ones.

Your First Look At SCARLET SPIDER #1!

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Your First Look At SCARLET SPIDER #1!
 
Get ready for a new brand of web-slinging action in your first look at Scarlet Spider #1! From the red-hot creative team of Chris Yost & Ryan Stegman, Kaine – the all-new Scarlet Spider – finds himself on the run  in Texas after saving New York City from becoming the world’s largest spider nest during Spider-Island. But when his escape is stopped by a super-powered crime syndicate, Kaine must put an end to their corruption the only way he knows how…violently.
 
“Scarlet Spider is a book that can deal with a character much like Peter Parker but at darker, more difficult place in his life,” said Stephen Wacker, Marvel Senior Editor. “The violent choices he’s made through years of struggle—the sins of youth, so to speak—have come at a brutal cost. He may hope that the things he’s done will be left to the dusty, yellowed pages of history, but someone ALWAYS remembers who you used to be.”
 
Redefining power & responsibility, no fan can miss the brutal debut of Scarlet Spider #1 hitting comic shops everywhere, this January.
 
SCARLET SPIDER #1 (NOV110519)
Written by CHRIS YOST
Pencils by RYAN STEGMAN
Colors by MARTE GRACIA
Cover by RYAN STEGMAN
FOC – 12/12/11, ON SALE – 1/4/12

Now In Hardcover, the Critically Acclaimed BATMAN: THE BLACK MIRROR

 Now In Hardcover, the Critically Acclaimed BATMAN: THE BLACK MIRROR

“Because no matter how good you think you are at drawing a line between work and home, there will always be some cases that stay with you … cases that come howling back at you out of the darkness, like phone calls in the middle of the night.” – Commissioner James Gordon

Few understand the extent of darkness that dwells within the heart of Gotham City like Batman and Commissioner James Gordon do. But when the grave threats that torment Gotham may lie within Gordon’s own bloodline, he’ll be put to the test like never before.

With Dick Grayson behind the cape and cowl of the Dark Knight, it’ll be up to Batman and Commissioner Gordon to embark on one of their most personal missions yet to protect Gotham before the fate of the entire city is completely doomed.

From the acclaimed creative team of Scott Snyder, Jock and Francesco Francavilla, BATMAN: THE BLACK MIRROR collects DETECTIVE COMICS #871-881 and is quickly shaping up to be one of the hottest gifts for comic book fans this holiday season.

“Though his run as Batman is over, THE BLACK MIRROR will remain the defining chapter of Dick Grayson’s stint as the Dark Knight,” IGN wrote of the book. “Perhaps more importantly is the story’s contributions to Jim Gordon and Gotham City itself – two of DC’s most underappreciated characters – which Snyder and company give a defining appearance not seen in such stunning display since BATMAN: YEAR ONE. By all accounts, THE BLACK MIRROR is the Batman story to beat for the next generation of superhero comics.”

“Snyder knows how to make things disturbing and mysterious while keeping a strong level of action driving the plot forward. He brings a level of sophistication and class to the title,”

Check out the gallery below for a sneak peek at some of the rare sketches and designs included in the back of the book. BATMAN: THE BLACK MIRROR is available in bookstores everywhere now.

Holiday Gift Guide: The Lion King Toys, Part 3

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The Lion King returns to our hearts this fall/winter on blu-ray and the toys have come back, as well!  Do you remember the figures, plush and PVCs from the mid-1990s?   Well, a fantastic company, Just Play, has produced a fantastic Wal-Mart exclusive toyline full of near identical product that is sure to please everyone!  I can't tell you how much like a kid I felt when I stumbled upon the full display at our local store...its such a joy and what a fun chance to build a great Lion King collection as a Disney fan or to shower your kids with toys from a classic Disney that are rather scarce to come by these days!  Either way...WIN!  Each of these products is fantastically made and comes highly recommended by Toy Legion!

Monday, November 28, 2011

'Twas the Night Before Christmas (Deluxe Edition) Blu-Ray Review

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'Twas the Night Before Christmas (Deluxe Edition) Blu-Ray Review



Synopsis: For some unexplained reason, letters to Santa Claus are being returned to the children of Junctionville. It seems some sour soul has angered St. Nick, calling Christmas "a fraudulent myth!" The skeptical rodent Albert Mouse has to be brought to his senses "and let up a little on the wonder why." How Albert is persuaded to change his tune paves the way for Santa's jolly return to Junctionville - and the joyous finale of this charming animated fable inspired by Clement Moore's poem.

Review: Everyone loves a good Xmas movie.  I enjoy watching everything from Rudolph to Frosty to the Garfield Xmas special and Charlie Brown each year.  One that hasn't been around for many years, at least not that I've caught, is the Rankin/Bass animated classic "Twas the Night Before Christmas."

This enjoyable classic cartoon shows a tale of what would happen if we sassed Santa and he stomped off the job.  Its a well produced and fun cartoon that isn't well circulated on television, so this may be the first chance for your kids to see it.  Mine loved it and that was enough for me!  This is the first time you can get it on blu-ray, high-definition.  The toon looks fantastic!

Video:



Interest Range: Animation Classics, Xmas

The Smurfs Holiday Celebration DVD Review

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The Smurfs Holiday Celebration DVD Review



Synopsis: Deck the halls with Papa Smurf, Smurfette, Brainy, Jokey and all the other true blue friends in these absosmurfly charming animated specials from "The Smurfs" TV series. In "'Tis the Season To Be Smurfy", young Sassette Smurf discovers the true meaning of the season when the Smurfs befriend an elderly human couple who have no money to celebrate Christmas. Then, in "The Smurfs Christmas Special", the wicked Gargamel plots to ruin Christmas for the Smurfs and with the help of an evil stranger, he destroys the Smurf's village. But even with no Christmas decorations or holiday feast, the Smurfs still have a smurfy song in their hearts. Will Gargamel feel the Christmas spirit this year? Dash through the snow to give your family the smurfiest gift of the season.

Review: This DVD is a collection of two Xmas specials from the Smurfs TV show of the 1980s.  One thing that strikes me is how kids these days don't have much for good holiday specials.  We have a lot of good ones attached to our 80s cartoons, like Garfield and He-Man.   This Smurfs special is absolutely charming and fun.  My daughter LOVED the episodes and is really Smurf crazy since the film came out this past summer.   We highly recommend this DVD for the holiday season..its cheap and fun.  Win!

Video:

Interest Range: Animation, Xmas

Scholastic: Caldecott Favorites Featuring The Snowy Day DVD Review

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Scholastic: Caldecott Favorites Featuring The Snowy Day DVD Review



Synopsis: 23 Award-Winning Stories in a 3-DVD collection.  Caldecott award winners including Ezra Jack Keats’ The Snowy Day, Hans Christian Andersen’s The Ugly Duckling and Denise Fleming’s In the Small, Small Pond come together for the first time in Caldecott Favorites!

Review: Scholastic is famous for providing us with the finest in children's literature.  Now, this DVD joins dozens of other great sets just like it...this time featuring Caldecott favorites!  These tales are all absolutely fantastic and some even legendary.  This is a wonderful set to expose your children to...especially with the drivel on TV these days.  If you want a break from the insantiy of Sponge Bob you can have these great tales read to your kids on the TV!

Antarctic Antics
o Antarctic Antics
o Bear Snores On
o In the Small, Small Pond
o Bark, George 

Ezra Jack Keats Collection
o The Snowy Day
o Peter’s Chair
o Whistle for Willie
o Pet Show! 

Make Way for Ducklings
o Make Way for Ducklings
o The Ugly Duckling
o The Story About Ping
o Angus and the Ducks 

23 Stories Featuring narration by John Lithgow, Laura Dern, Jane Harvey, and more!

Interest Range: Scholastic, Educational

Neverwhere (15th Anniversary Edition) DVD Review

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Neverwhere (15th Anniversary Edition) DVD Review



Synopsis: Neil Gaiman’s (The Sandman, Coraline) first TV miniseries, co-created with Lenny Henry (The Lenny Henry Show, Chef!), brings viewers to an ambitious exploration of a London with two worlds. When office drone Richard Mayhew (Gary Bakewell) rescues a mysterious girl named Door (Laura Fraser, He Knew He Was Right), he unwittingly finds himself part of her quest to learn why her parents have been killed. The next thing he knows, Mayhew’s life changes forever as he's pulled into the fantastical world of London Below, far from his mundane life in London Above. Pursued by the murderous Messrs. Croup and Vandemar, Door and Richard, with the help of Hunter and the Marquis de Carabas, attempt to find the Angel Islington, who knows the secret behind the murder of Door's family, and possibly a way for Richard to go home.

Review:  The BBC if famous for their telefantasy shows, especially in the 1990s.   Neverwhere is one of those shows that has been underground in the USA for a long time and is now finally available on this great anniversary edition DVD.   The magical world of London Below is brought to us from the twisted mind of comic book legend Neil Gaiman.  The show was full of oddities and dark corners, but is SO much fun.  The low budget is very apparant, but I love a lot of the low budget sci-fi that BBC has put out over the years, so that certainly doesn't dappen it for me, in fact, it almost adds to the appeal!  Its great to have the chance to see this show now and its a wonderful addition to any sci-fi fan's collection.

The special features on this DVD include: 15th Anniversary Introduction, 15th Anniversary Audio Commentary with Neil Gaiman, Lenny Henry, and producer Clive Brill, Original Interview with Gaiman, Original Audio Commentary with Gaiman, Photo Gallery, Character Descriptions and Neverwhere Map Insert.

Video:


Links: BBC Shop

Interest Range: BBC, Sci-Fi

God Bless Ozzy Osbourne Blu-Ray Review

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God Bless Ozzy Osbourne Blu-Ray Review



Synopsis: Ozzy Osbourne is one of the most iconic figures in rock and one of the founding fathers of heavy metal, however to many his Madman persona has overshadowed his considerable musical achievements. God Bless Ozzy Osbourne tells for the first time the story of his career from the founding of Black Sabbath through to solo stardom and his wider fame beyond. These were the wild days of his prodigious drug and alcohol intake, of biting the head from a dove at a record company meeting and biting into a bat on stage but also of the tragic death of Randy Rhoads and the reality TV show The Osbournes. The film follows Ozzy s torturous and emotionally fraught journey from excess to sobriety, which Ozzy regards as his greatest accomplishment. Featuring never before seen footage, new interviews with Ozzy himself, his brothers and sisters, his children, his bandmates in Black Sabbath and those who both inspired him and were inspired by him, this is the first film to take viewers inside the mind and psyche of this legendary figure.

Review: We love Ozzy here at the Legion.  Not so much his music funnily, but rather his persona and his family.  We LOVED the Osbournes MTV show back in the day.  This new documentary, partially done by his own son Jack, is an amazing and in-depth look at the life of the man himself.  The film takes you from his early childhood through Black Sabbath..to solo and beyond.  It blows the lid off of the behind the scenes of the MTV show, which was very cool to see.  The basis for the film is Ozzy's sobriety.  Its new still and its tender, but its there.  Ozzy is finally healthy and clean and its so good to see.  This is an amazing documentary and we think Jack has a great future with his new company...though I do think Ozzy was more candid because he was being interviewed by his son.  This one is a must own.

Bonus Features: Q&A with Ozzy and Jack Osbourne, Deleted Scenes, Tribeca Film Festival footage

Interest Range: Documentary, Metal Music

T.J. Miller: No Real Reason DVD Review

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T.J. Miller: No Real Reason DVD Review


Synopsis: T.J. Miller has been a rising star in stand-up comedy having been named as Variety's "10 Comics To Watch" and one of Entertainment Weekly's "Next Big Things In Comedy." He's now arrived in a big way with his first full length Comedy Central special No Real Reason. T.J.'s fan base continues to grow with each big screen role - "Unstoppable," "Gulliver's Travels," "Get Him To The Greek," "She's Out Of Your League" - along with his regular appearances on Chelsea Lately.

Review: We love stand-up comedy here at the Legion.  That being said, we're rather particular about what we watch.  T.J. Miller has been seen all around lately..in movies and on TV.  This comedy special is definately a great representation of his style.  The guy is just plain funny.  His jokes are well thought out without being unnecessarily crude and his humor, we feel, would have mass appeal.  This is a great comedy special, we laughed our asses off.  Comedy Central hit a home run again.

Interest Range: Stand-up Comedy

Friday, November 25, 2011

Love Begins DVD Review

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Love Begins DVD Review


Synopsis: Discover how the Love Comes Softly series began! After their father’s passing, Ellen Barlow (Julie Mond) and her sister Cassie struggle to maintain the family farm in Anderson’s Corner. When Clark Davis (Wes Brown) finds trouble in town on his way to California, Ellen agrees tohire him at the farm to work off his debts. Before long, Clark and Ellen unexpectedly develop feelings for each other. Ultimately, a turn of events inspires the pair to begin a legacy of love and faith together in this heartwarming family drama

Review: If there was ever a date movie...one to cuddle up on the couch with your sweetheart and enjoy, its Love Begins.  The period tale features a pair of sisters in trouble, trying to preserve their lifestyle, and a drifter in debt comes their way a love connection begins.  The film explores the difficulties of people in two different stations in life that are so different, and yet so much alike, falling in love.  This one is touching, heartwarming and definately romantic!

Interest Range: Drama, Romance

The Adventures Of Tintin: Season One DVD Review

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The Adventures Of Tintin: Season One DVD Review


Synopsis: One of the most popular European classic comic strips of all time tells stories of the heroic escapades of youthful reporter Tintin and his loyal canine companion Snowy. From a comic that first appeared in 1929 by Belgian artist Herge, these delightful adventures were spun into books, magazines, TV series, radio programs and theater productions. The television series The Adventures Of Tintin (1991 1993) follows Tintin and Snowy in solving mysteries closely related to the much-loved original stories. A colorful cast of characters is along for the ride, including the salty Captain Haddock, handy Professor Calculus and clumsy Thomson & Thompson. Exploring the globe, solving mysteries and searching for truth and justice, Tintin and crew inspire the adventurer in all of us!

Now featured in a major motion picture that intertwines elements of two episodes included here (The Secret Of The Unicorn and Red Rackham’s Treasure), the complete first season of the award-winning series is now available for your enjoyment on DVD for the first time!

Review: Shout! Factory is famous for releasing some of the best vintage animation on DVD.  This time around they're releasing The 1990s show Adventures of Tin Tin.  This release features the complete first season of the show.   The animation style was very remiscent of the original strips and the target audience is most definately a young audience.  The show is a lot of wholesome fun that is hard to find these days.  This is just the first of three seasons to release on DVD, so get started collecting this vintage favorite today, just in time for the live-action feature film.

Interest Range: Vintage Animation

Spy Kids 4: All The Time In The World 3D, Blu-Ray and DVD Combo Review

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Spy Kids 4: All The Time In The World 3D, Blu-Ray and DVD Combo Review



Synopsis: The action packed franchise is backwith the next generation of Spy Kids! Marissa Cortez Wilson (Jessica Alba) has it all: married to a famous spy-hunting television reporter (Joel McHale), with a new baby and intelligent twin step kids, Rebecca (Rowan Blanchard) and Cecil (Mason Cook). When maniacal Timekeeper (Jeremy Piven) disrupts her domestic bliss--threatening to take over the planet--Marissa comes out of retirement as a top secret agent. With Armageddon quickly approaching, Rebecca and Cecil are thrust into action! With a little help from some familiar Spy Kids friends, Carmen (Alexa Vega), Juni (Daryl Sabara), and their faithful dog Argonaut (Ricky Gervais) and some mind-blowing gadgets, they just may be able to save the world!

Review: Spy Kids is one of the biggest children's movie franchises of the 2000s.  This newest and fourth installment of the franchise features a new family and all new Spy Kids.  My kids LOVE these films, so we gave this one a fair shake, even though there is a major cast lineup change.  The original spy kids return as grown spies to pass the torch to the new kids.  This film, much like the Diary of a Wimpy Kid franchise, has its target audience of third to sixth graders.  They love these films more than life itself, but parents may find some of the camp a bit hard to swallow.  Part of the duty of parenthood, right? lol.  The one bonus is that original director and creator Robert Rodriguez is back again to direct, so it doesn't fall far off the beaten path for these movies.  Basically, if you enjoyed the first three, this one is a home run!  It looks amazing in 3D, as well.  The new technology really does these films well.  There are tons of great action sequences that involve objects and the spies themselves coming right out at you!  Even if you don't have a 3D TV and Blu-ray player yet, you can still buy this combo and enjoy the 2D blu-ray and DVD included.  This one would make a great Xmas gift for the kids in your life.

Interest Range: Action, Kids Movies

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Carjacked Blu-Ray Review

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Carjacked Blu-Ray Review



Synopsis: Two-time Golden Globe nominee Maria Bello of ''Prime Suspect'' stars as Lorraine, a stressed out single mom harassed by an abusive ex-husband and struggling to raise her 8-year-old son. Her world changes in an instant when she and her child are carjacked by a fugitive bank robber (Stephen Dorff of Immortals) and taken on a desperate cross-country drive to retrieve his loot. But Lorraine refuses to be a victim. She is about to take control and fight back. And tonight, what she will do to survive may lead to the most shocking crimes of all. Joanna Cassidy (''Six Feet Under'') and Catherine Dent (''The Shield'') co-star in this intense action-thriller from the director of THE MARINE.

Review: Ok, now if you enjoy action films, like I do, then you'll be used to a pretty sketchy level of touch and go when it comes to acting and cliche plots.  Carjacked is definately in this category.  The action is solid, the drama is there, but its definately nothing we haven't seen before.  The plot points are very predictable and the characters a bit laughable at times, but that is kind of the charm of these types of films.  You have to enjoy the camp.  This one is a great addition to the extensive history of the action-suspense genre.

Interest Range: Action, Drama

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

The Joker: A Visual History of the Clown Prince of Crime Book Review

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The Joker: A Visual History of the Clown Prince of Crime Book Review

A comprehensive look at the greatest comic book villain . . . ever. Since his first appearance in 1940’s Batman #1, the Joker stands alone as the most hated, feared, and loved villain in the DC Universe. Though his true origins may be unknown, the Clown Prince of Crime’s psychotic appearances in hundreds of comic books has shaped the way we look at Batman, comic books, and ourselves. Indeed, a hero is only as good as his nemesis, so the Joker’s heinous crimes, including murdering the second Robin and paralyzing Batgirl, have elevated Batman to the highest levels of crime-fighting, and we, the readers, to the finest levels of quality pop-culture entertainment.

The Joker is the first retrospective chronicling one of the most groundbreaking and game-changing villains of all time, and contains images from his more than seventy years in comics by comic book artists and writers such as Bob Kane, Bill Finger, Jerry Robinson, Dick Sprang, Grant Morrison, Dave McKean, Neil Gaiman, Geoff Johns, Alan Moore, Brian Bolland, Brian Azzarello, Bruce Timm, and Paul Dini. Also included are images from his various film, television, animated, and video game incarnations, such as the timeless interpretations by Cesar Romero, Jack Nicholson, and Heath Ledger, who won his posthumous Oscar for his portrayal of the Joker in 2008’s The Dark Knight. This book is a must-have for fans and anyone who wants to die laughing.

This new book is the first time we get a focus spotlighted on Batman's #1 villain...the Joker.  Prolific author Daniel Wallace does a masterful job of peppering in dynamic and colorful imagery amidst an in-depth and informative history of the clown prince of crime!  The book covers his inception..all the way through the movies and cartoons to the present day.


The Origins of the Joker

    The Joker was first created by Bill Finger and Bob Kane back in 1940.  He debuted in the Spring 1940 comic book Batman #1.  There is some dispute from Jerry Robinson that he too had a hand in the creation of the character, such things are the subject of much heated comic con discussion.  The Joker was actually modeled after Conrad Veidt's character in the 1928 silent film The Man Who Laughs.  They took the unsettling design and  blended it with the image on a Joker's card and a beloved homicidal maniac was born.  And homicidal he was -- even in that first appearance.   The original plans for the character were to kill him off in his very next appearance, after a prison break, but the forsight of then DC Comics editor Whitney Ellsworth who had them add a last minute panel that made the Joker's death ambiguous, therefore preserving one of the most highly recognizable fictional villains in pop culture.


Silver Age Sillyness

    This was the Golden Age version of the Joker.  The Golden Age of comic books lasted from the late 1930s through the mid 1950s.  The next generation, which was clearly effected by the Comics Code Authority (the industry's alternative to being regulated by the Federal government), was the Silver Age of comic books.  The Silver Age ran from about 1956 to 1970.  One major aspect that set the Silver Age apart was a toning down of most comic book characters.  The Joker was one of the few Batman villains to carry over from the Golden Age, but he was barely recognizable.  He went from a murderous and feindish gangster to a fun-loving and wacky prankster that was essentially harmless.  The Joker's inclusion in the 1966 Batman television show, where he was portrayed by the legendaryily mustached Cesar Romero, did nothing but further this zany image.

The Murder of Jason Todd

    It wasn't until the murder of Jason Todd that the Joker began to regain his mystique.  Jason, the second Robin,  was a wide-eyed blonde boy, athletic and all-american.   The original origin for Jason Todd was pretty much the same as the original Robin, Dick Grayson's,  origin.  His parents were also circus performers, but they were killed by the Batman rogue Killer Croc instead of gangster Tony Zucco.  Eventually, he was given the Robin uniform to wear by Dick Grayson and he died his hair black to emulate the former Robin.  Then, in 1985, Dc Comics underwent one of the biggest and most altering story arcs ever, the Crisis On Infinite Earths.  The Crisis elinimated some characters and changed the origins and relationships of others.   The new origin for Jason was now that he was a young street punk that Batman met when he put the Batmobile up on cement blocks and stole the tires!  The nerve, right?  That should've been Batman's first clue that maybe he was a little too sassy to be Robin, but nevertheless this Jason Todd eventually became the new Robin and lasted for many a year.  This Jason was, unlike Dick Grayson and the former incarnation of Jason, a little twerp.  He was willfull, snarky and sometimes flat out disobedient to his mentor.  He sometimes took risks he shouldn't have and exhibited impulsive behavior.  This son of a overdosed drug addict smoked, drank and cursed!  Not your grandpa's Robin!  His reception amongst fans was very mixed.  Many felt that Dick was the one true Robin and found Jason to be an annoyance.

    Then, in 1988, now legendary DC Comics editor Denny O'Neil realized that the new Robin wasn't very liked and thought up a great gimmick to let the fans decide on whether they wanted DC Comics to make a change.  Thus was born "A Death in the Family", the story arc that was presented in Batman #426 to #429.  They put up an ad at the end of Batman #427 that read “Robin Will Die Because The Joker Wants Revenge, But You Can Prevent It With A Telephone Call.”  They the give two 900 numbers as an option.  If fans called 1-900-720-2660 they voted  for “The Joker Fails and Robin Lives” or 1-900-720-2666 to vote for “The Joker Succeeds and Robin Will Not Survive.”  The cost was 50 cents per call and the voting line was open for two days only on September 15th and 16th.

    DC Comics had two pages produced.  One where Robin lived and one where he died in Batman's arms.  When the smoke had cleared over 10,000 fans called in to vote.  The final vote was 5,343 votes for Jason to die and 5,271 for him to live.  The fans had spoken, Jason's fate was sealed and Batman would never be the same again.    The results appeared in Batman #428, an issue that is now legendary.   Jason Todd, Robin II, died of a severe beating with a crowbar by the Joker and is then unceremoniously blown-up by the Clown Prince of Crime.   This is a great example of the level of brutality that the Joker character was moving towards at this time.  This was a line drawn in the sand and things would never be the same.  The Joker only moves towards being more twisted and brutal and the Batman would never be the same again, moving into a far more dark and brooding tone, blaming himself for Jason's untilmely demise.

The Book

The images in this book are taken from directly from the comic book pages, sketches, animation cels and other work from artists, such as Tim Sale, Sam Keith and Jim Lee.  Even the fan with a fairly  extensive knowlege of the Joker can learn a few things from this great behind the scenes look at the greatest comic book villain of all.  The introduction by Mark Hamill, the most prolific cartoon Joker,  is a great touch in this high-end hardcover book from Universe publishing.  The book retails for around $50.  The cover features a dust jacket with "Killing Joke" artwork that wraps around a purple and green "Ha Ha" cover.  A lot of books are released each year that spotlight Batman, but this rare new look that focuses on the Joker is a welcome breath of fresh air.

How to Buy: Amazon.com

The Joker: A Visual History of the Clown Prince of Crime Book Review

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The Joker: A Visual History of the Clown Prince of Crime Book Review

About the Book: A comprehensive look at the greatest comic book villain . . . ever. Since his first appearance in 1940’s Batman #1, the Joker stands alone as the most hated, feared, and loved villain in the DC Universe. Though his true origins may be unknown, the Clown Prince of Crime’s psychotic appearances in hundreds of comic books has shaped the way we look at Batman, comic books, and ourselves. Indeed, a hero is only as good as his nemesis, so the Joker’s heinous crimes, including murdering the second Robin and paralyzing Batgirl, have elevated Batman to the highest levels of crime-fighting, and we, the readers, to the finest levels of quality pop-culture entertainment.

The Joker is the first retrospective chronicling one of the most groundbreaking and game-changing villains of all time, and contains images from his more than seventy years in comics by comic book artists and writers such as Bob Kane, Bill Finger, Jerry Robinson, Dick Sprang, Grant Morrison, Dave McKean, Neil Gaiman, Geoff Johns, Alan Moore, Brian Bolland, Brian Azzarello, Bruce Timm, and Paul Dini. Also included are images from his various film, television, animated, and video game incarnations, such as the timeless interpretations by Cesar Romero, Jack Nicholson, and Heath Ledger, who won his posthumous Oscar for his portrayal of the Joker in 2008’s The Dark Knight. This book is a must-have for fans and anyone who wants to die laughing.

Our Take: This new book is the first time we get a focus spotlighted on Batman's #1 villain...the Joker.  Prolific author Daniel Wallace does a masterful job of peppering in dynamic and colorful imagery amidst an in-depth and informative history of the clown prince of crime!  The book covers his inception..all the way through the movies and cartoons to the present day.  

The images are taken from comic book pages, sketches, animation cels and other work from artists, such as Tim Sale, Sam Keith and Jim Lee.  I have a pretty extensive knowlege of the Joker and I learned a few things from this great behind the scenes look at the greatest comic book villain of all.  The introduction by Mark Hamill is a great touch in this high-end hardcover book from Universe publishing.  The book retails for around $50, but its well worth it!   The cover features a dust jacket with "Killing Joke" artwork that wraps around a purple and green "Ha Ha" cover. 

A lot of books are released each year that spotlight Batman, but this rare new look that focuses on the Joker is a welcome breath of fresh air.

How to Buy: Amazon.com

Thundercats "Between Brothers" Episode Pics & Video!

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"Between Brothers"
Airs Friday, November 25
8:30/7:30c on Cartoon Network

Episode Synopsis: Tygra and Lion-O enter the Astral Plane to retrieve the stone, but encounter Mumm-Ra in the process. Grune and Panthro have their final duel. Cheetara finally chooses her beau.

Image Gallery:

“ThunderCats” © Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. “ThunderCats” and all related character and elements are trademarks of and © Warner Bros.
Videos:

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

I Triple Dog Dare You! A Christmas Story Contest!

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I Triple Dog Dare You!

Recreate a scene from A Christmas Story for a chance to win the ultimate fan vacation!
Now at a www.AChristmasStoryScene.com

Warner Bros. Consumer Products, invites everyone to get into the holiday spirit by recreating their favorite scene from the classic holiday comedy, A Christmas Story, with the “A Christmas Story: I TRIPLE DOG DARE YOU! Video Contest.” The contest features celebrity judge Ian Petrella, who starred as the lovable and hilarious Randy Parker, Ralphie’s younger brother, in the film and will give fans the chance to win the ultimate A Christmas Story experience. 

Fans can enter at www.AChristmasStoryScene.com.  Contestants must recreate and film their favorite scenes from A Christmas Story for a chance to win a trip to the real A Christmas Story House in Cleveland, Ohio, with a VIP Chinese dinner included!  Fans can upload their creations onto YouTube and submit the links to the contest site.  Here are a few examples:




Now...we're going to giveaway a copy of this great DVD to one lucky reader.  Just send us the link to you video submission too and we'll pick our favorite to get a copy!  Simply send the link to dvdlegion.com @ gmail.com for your chance to win!  Good luck!

Thundercats Collectible Stylized Figure (6-pack) coming in Spring!

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Collectible Stylized Figure (6-pack)
Suggested Retail: $24.99
SPRING 2012
Collect all of your favorite characters from the new “ThunderCats” series from Warner Bros. Animation.

-Includes six cool stylized figures from the all new “ThunderCats” show.
 
-6-pack set includes Lion-O, Mumm-Ra, Tygra, Panthro, Cheetara and Slithe.
 
-Figures come in diorama style packaging.

OVERVIEW
“ThunderCats” fuses sci-fi and sorcery to reignite the thrill of the 1980s hit television series with all the favorite characters as they explore an expanded universe. It’s sure to have kids everywhere once again shouting, “ThunderCats, Hooo!” Lion-O wasn’t ready to be king and he definitely wasn’t ready to be the only cat standing between immortal evil and the total destruction of his world, but fate left him little choice. Only he could lead this quest.

PRODUCT LINE DETAILS
Bandai America Incorporated has launched the iconic ThunderCats toy line back into action with an all-new look! Kids and fans of the original 1980s animated television show will be able to wield the mystic Sword of Omens to become Lion-O, King of the ThunderCats. Join Lion-O as he battles against the evil Mumm-Ra and hollers, “ThunderCats, Hooo!” The line includes action figures, vehicles, play sets and role-play items aligned with the all new “ThunderCats” animated series. For more information on the ThunderCats toy line, please visit www.bandai.com/thundercats.