Wednesday, August 26, 2015

AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. Casts Matt Willig as Lash

And for their pick in the 2015 Marvel Supervillain Draft, the Inhumans have selected...Matt Willig.

Marvel has released a new synopsis for Season 3 of the ABC series Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., which revealed that Matt Willig has been cast as the Inhuman known as Lash.  Lash is described in the synopsis as "a monstrous Inhuman whose loyalties remain ambiguous."

Willig, 46, is a former NFL offensive tackle who won a Super Bowl XXXIV ring playing for the St. Louis Rams and also played in Super Bowl XXXVIII with the Carolina Panthers. After playing in the NFL for 14 years, Willig turned to acting and has appeared on the television series NCIS, Chuck, Grimm, Dexter, My Name is Earl, Malcolm in the Middle, Terriers, and The Young and the Restless.  He also voiced The Juggernaut for the Marvel videogame Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions and appeared in the Michael Cera movie Year One.

Created in 2014 by Charles Soule and Joe Maduriera, Lash first appeared in Inhuman #1  Born in the hidden Inhuman city of Orollan, Greenland, Lash was one of the few chosen among his generation to receive the gift of Terrigenesis, an honor he believed only select members of his race were due.  When Black Bolt activated a Terrigen Bomb above New York, flooding the world with Terrigen Mists and awakening the powers of Inhuman descendants living among humanity, Lash embarked on a mission to find all the individuals affected, and judge for himself whether they were worthy to live with their new abilities. 
Making his way to Illinois, he encountered a new Inhuman named Dante, whom he attempted to persuade to join him in Orollan until he was stopped by Medusa.

Lash has the ability to convert energy from various sources and subsequently emit it from his palms.  His powers are capable of disintegrating a living being. 

And here's the full synopsis for Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 3...

"Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." returns for an action-packed third season, with Director Phil Coulson (Clark Gregg) and Agent Daisy Johnson (Chloe Bennet) leading the charge as S.H.I.E.L.D. searches the world for more powered people in the aftermath of their epic battle with Jiaying and her army of Inhumans. However, Coulson and the team soon find out that they are not the only group looking for these new Inhumans.

Many months after their war with a rogue group of Inhumans, the team is still reeling. Coulson is again trying to put the pieces of his once revered organization back together while also dealing with the loss of his hand. His confidante and second in command, Agent Melinda May (Ming-Na Wen), has yet to return from an impromptu vacation with ex-husband Andrew (Blair Underwood); deadly superspy Agent Bobbi Morse (Adrianne Palicki) is recovering from her traumatic torture at the hands of Grant Ward (Brett Dalton); Fitz (Iain De Caestecker) is obsessed with discovering the truth behind the mysterious disappearance of Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge); and all are on high-alert for the next move from Ward and Hydra.

Ever since the existence of Super Heroes and aliens became public knowledge after the Battle of New York, the world has been trying to come to grips with this new reality. Coulson assembled a small, highly select group of Agents from the worldwide law-enforcement organization known as S.H.I.E.L.D. (Strategic Homeland Intervention Enforcement and Logistics Division). S.H.I.E.L.D.’s mission: to protect those who cannot protect themselves from threats they cannot conceive.

But bigger threats loom ahead, setting the stakes even higher for the Agents, including the spread of Terrigen, an alien substance that unlocks superhuman abilities in select individuals; the emergence of new Inhumans who cannot yet control nor understand their powers; the rise of a new government organization that will go toe-to-toe with S.H.I.E.L.D.; the unknown properties of the massive alien Kree monolith, which has taken one of their own; and the constant threat of a rebuilt Hydra terrorist organization under S.H.I.E.L.D. traitor Grant Ward, who is making it his personal mission to take down Coulson and S.H.I.E.L.D.

New faces, both friend and foe, will join the series, including the no-nonsense, highly-skilled and somewhat mysterious leader (Constance Zimmer) of the ATCU (Advanced Threat Containment Unit), her intimidating partner, Banks (Andrew Howard), Lash (Matthew Willig), a monstrous Inhuman whose loyalties remain ambiguous, and new Inhuman Joey (Juan Pablo Raba), who is struggling to harness his newfound abilities, among other surprising characters.

Coulson, with the help of Daisy and Mack (Henry Simmons), will work to slowly assemble a team that is stronger than ever before, combining the highly skilled Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. with powered individuals in the hopes of protecting the innocent in a world where the balance of power is ever-shifting, and new dangers are constantly emerging.

“Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” stars Clark Gregg as Director Phil Coulson, Ming-Na Wen as Agent Melinda May, Brett Dalton as Grant Ward, Chloe Bennet as Agent Daisy Johnson, Iain De Caestecker as Agent Leo Fitz, Elizabeth Henstridge as Agent Jemma Simmons, Nick Blood as Agent Lance Hunter, Adrianne Palicki as Agent Bobbi Morse, Henry Simmons as Agent Alphonso “Mack” MacKenzie and Luke Mitchell as Lincoln Campbell.

“Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” was co-created by Joss Whedon, Jed Whedon & Maurissa Tancharoen, who also serve as executive producers along with Jeph Loeb and Jeffrey Bell. “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” is produced by ABC Studios and Marvel Television, and is broadcast in 720 Progressive (720P), ABC’s selected HDTV format, with 5.1-channel surround sound.

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 3 premieres September 29th at 9:00 on ABC.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

THE FLASH Casts Violett Beane as Jesse Quick

Something tells me Jesse Quick cosplay is going to be big by the end of the year.

TVLine has word that the CW series The Flash has cast newcomer Violett Beane in the role of Jesse Chambers, better known to DC Comics fans as the superspeedster Jesse Quick.

According to the article, Jesse will appear in multiple episodes of the show's second season and is described as "a brilliant but quirky college student who gets caught up in the battle between The Flash and Season 2 Big Bad (the not-yet-cast) Zoom."

Beane's two credits listed on IMDb show her appearing in the films Flay (currently in post-production) and Slash (currently filming).

Created in 1992 by Len Strazewski and Mike Parobeck, Jesse Quick first appeared in Justice Society of America (vol.2) #1 as Jesse Chambers, the daughter of superheroes Johnny Quick and Liberty Belle and a student at Gotham University.  After the superhero team her parents had been colleagues with, the Justice Society of America, reemerged following a long absence, her thesis topic became "The Impact of Superheroes on Society" and she began to follow the returned heroes, taking notes on their adventures. When her father asked her to deliver some documents to the Society, the encounter would result in her aiding the team as Jesse Quick, finally living up to her father's dream of her being a costumed crimefighter.

Just like her father, Jesse has powers of flight and accelerated speed, resulting from the state of mind achieved from the visualization of the speed-formula: 3X2(9YZ)4A and a link to the Speed Force.  She also has her mother's super-strength, enabling her to lift great weights, such as a car, with ease. As with her mother, the mechanism of her super-strength remains unexplained, which irritated her father.  She attributes her powers to a "mantra" like the formula used by her father to unlock his speed.

She soon met Wally West, the third Flash, who would later ask her to be his replacement if something were to happen to him.  It was all an elaborate plan on his part, trying to force Bart Allen, Impulse, to take his role in the legacy of the Flash more seriously, and be Wally's successor.  Although she felt betrayed, she would end up saving Wally's life, although her leg was hurt in the process.  When Wally returned from the Speed Force, he healed her leg, and the earlier deception was largely forgiven, but not forgotten.  Jesse lost her enhanced speed shortly after, and the person she blamed was Wally, who had been directly using the Speed Force energies instead of simply tapping them like the other speedsters did.  In fact, it turned out to be the villain Savitar who was the cause, having severed her connection to the Speed Force, as well as multiple other speedsters.  Nonetheless, Wally chose the depowered Jesse to accompany him to Savitar's lair, where she succeeded in regaining her powers.  During the following battle with Savitar, her father gave his life in order to protect his daughter from one of Savitar's forces and merged with the Speed Force.  Although Wally would ultimately triumph over the villain, Jesse was left to mourn her father.

Jesse accepted the reins of managing her father's corporation, Quickstart Enterprises, while also operating as Jesse Quick, even joining the members of the New Titans to stop a nuclear threat.  When the Titans were later going through a reorganization, Wally, a founding member, selected Jesse to join the roster, hoping to soothe their old wounds. After initially declining the offer, she ultimately joined the Titans, but was only on the team for a short time.  She later became a member of the Justice Society, carrying on her mother's legacy as the new Liberty Belle and married fellow second-generation hero Rick Tyler, also known as Hourman.

The Flash returns to The CW for Season 2 on October 6, 2015.

THE FLASH Casts Demore Barnes as Tokamak

Seriously, can Firestorm just get his own show already? has revealed that the CW series The Flash has cast Demore Barnes as Henry Hewitt, better known to DC Comics fans as the Firestorm villain Tokamak.

According to the article, Hewitt is described by The CW as "a charming, but cocky scientist who was affected by the same Particle Accelerator explosion that created the Flash.  When Caitlin Snow (Danielle Panabaker) recruits him to join the team at S.T.A.R. Labs, Hewitt jumps at the opportunity to fulfill his destiny as a powerful metahuman."

Barnes, 38, is probably best known as Hector "Hammerhead" Williams on The Unit, and as Tobias Budge on Hannibal.  Barnes has also had roles on episodes of Fringe, Supernatural, Covert Affairs, Hemlock Grove, Transporter: The Series, Flashpoint, XIII: The Series, and The Associates.

Created in 1983 by Gerry Conway and Pat Broderick, Tokamak first appeared in The Fury of Firestorm (Vol.1) #15 as Henry Hewitt, the Chief Executive Officer of the Hewitt Corporation and a high level director in the 2000 Committee.  He attempted to pressure U.S. Senator Walter Reilly into voting in favor of the Hewitt Industries Bill, which would effectively allow Hewitt Industries unequaled control of the energy market.  When Reilly refused Hewitt's demands, Hewitt kidnapped the senator's daughter Lorraine and experimented on her to duplicate the nuclear accident that created Firestorm.  This experiment transformed Lorraine into Firehawk, whom Hewitt brainwashed her to eliminate Firestorm.

Hewitt then performed the same experiment on himself and forged a atomic containment suit, calling himself Tokamak, a Russian term referring to a magnetic confinement device that is one of the most-researched candidates for producing controlled thermonuclear fusion power.  He fought Firestorm and Firehawk, apparently dying when his suit was breached and caused a build-up of energy to explode.

The Flash returns to The CW for Season 2 on October 6, 2015.

GAMBIT Casts Léa Seydoux as Bella Donna

Don' you be worryin' now, X-Fans.  Gambit done got himself a wife.

Deadline reports that Fox's upcoming X-Men franchise film Gambit has cast Léa Seydoux as Bella Donna Boudreaux, the woman who married Remy LeBeau.  The film stars Channing Tatum and will be directed by Rupert Wyatt.

According to the article, Seydoux was on the shortlist with Mad Max: Fury Road‘s Abbey Lee and Rebecca Ferguson of Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation.  They were about to test for the role, and then Ferguson dropped out to take one of the leads in DreamWorks’ adaptation of The Girl on the Train.

Seydoux, 30, is a French actress best known as Charlotte LaPadite in Inglorious Basterds, Sabine Moreau in Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, and Clotilde in The Grand Budapest Hotel.  She'll be appearing as Madeleine Swann in the upcoming James Bond film Spectre, and has had roles in the films Blue is the Warmest Color, Midnight in Paris, and the 2009 version of Robin Hood.

Created in 1992 by Scott Lobdell and Jim Lee, Bella Donna first appeared in X-Men (vol.2) #8 as Bella Donna Boudreaux, a mutant with powers of astral projection and plasma blasts from the Assassins Guild in New Orleans that is rival to the Thieves Guild, to which Gambit belongs.  First meeting as children, the two became fast friends but the rivalry between the Guilds increased as they grew up. Their fathers arranged for a marriage between the two in the hopes that it would unite the Guilds. Immediately after the wedding, Bella Donna's brother Julien lashed out in jealousy and challenged Remy in a fight to the death.  Remy won, and as a punishment he was exiled from New Orleans. Choosing to make his own choices in life from that point on, he abandoned Bella Donna instead of letting her come with him.

A few years later, Bella Donna sought out Gambit to help fend off the Brood, who were attacking the Guilds.  Having persuaded Gambit and the X-Men to come back to New Orleans, they battled the new enemy with the aid of Ghost Rider (Dan Ketch).  Using her new psychic powers, Bella Donna followed Psylocke into the astral plane and expended her energy, before collapsing in Gambit's arms.  Believing her dead, he told the Thieves' Guild to take care of her, and went off for revenge against the Brood.  

As it happened, Bella Donna wasn't actually dead, but merely in a coma.  Gambit risked his life to bring her Candra's Elixir of Life, although while she was catatonic she was accidentally touched by Rogue.  She woke up without any recollection of who she was, or who Remy was, and he left her again.  Bella Donna's memory slowly returned, and she felt as if her soul had been violated. Enraged, she kidnapped Rogue's old boyfriend Cody, once again pitting herself against Gambit.  For the third time, he left her behind.

Seydoux will be the first actress to portray the character in live action, although the character was featured in the X-Men animated series episode "X-Ternally Yours."

Gambit is expected to arrive in theaters on October 7, 2016.

Friday, August 21, 2015

ABC Orders Pilot for Mockingbird Series MARVEL'S MOST WANTED

Remember that proposed Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. spinoff starring Mockingbird and Lance Hunter originally announced in April?  The one that was declared dead just a month later? Guess what, it's now getting a pilot.

Variety revealed yesterday that ABC is closing in on a deal to order a pilot for the proposed series, now titled Marvel's Most Wanted.  (Was Mockingbird not a good enough series title?) The series will feature Adrianne Palicki and Nick Blood, reprising their current roles of Marvel superhero Mockingbird and her ex-husband Lance Hunter.

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. producers Jeffrey Bell and Paul Zbyszewski co-created the project for Marvel and ABC Studios, and co-wrote the pilot.  They will serve as showrunners and executive producers together with Marvel’s head of television Jeph Loeb also executive producing.

According to the article, the series is "not a spinoff, per se, but rather an entirely new project solely focused on the two characters to continue their story.  Though plot details are scarce at this point, Marvel’s Most Wanted will follow the pair and their adventures together."

ABC hasn't made any decisions regarding a premiere date or how the new show will be set up, such as introducing the show as an episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Hunter first appeared in the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 2 opener, "Shadows," as a mercenary brought into S.H.I.E.L.D. by Isabelle Hartley together with Idaho.  He used to work for S.T.R.I.K.E. (Special Tactical Reserve for International Key Emergencies), the British counterpart to S.H.I.E.L.D. until Phil Coulson hired him as a mercenary following the events of Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

Mockingbird first appeared four episodes later in "A Hen in the Wolf House" as Barbara "Bobbi" Morse, an undercover S.H.I.E.L.D. agent posing as the head of security for Hydra Laboratories, but actually working for Coulson in order to monitor Jemma Simmons (who had also infiltrated Hydra).  When Simmons was compromised, Morse revealed her true allegiance in order to help Simmons escape and acquire valuable Hydra data.  She was later revealed to have been previously married to Hunter and to be good friends with Alphonso "Mack" Mackenzie.

The Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. spinoff is one of two new Marvel series for ABC in the works, along with a drama written by John Ridley, that has been rumored to focus on the current Ms. Marvel, Kamala Khan.  ABC and Marvel also have the midseason drama Agent Carter returning for a second season during Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s midseason hiatus.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

NEXT STOP EVERYWHERE 033: "Blink" is Up!

"People assume that time is a strict progression of cause to effect, but actually from a non-linear, non-subjective viewpoint, it's more like a big ball of wibbly wobbly...timey wimey... stuff."
-- The Tenth Doctor, Doctor Who: "Blink"

My good friend and co-host Jesse Jackson and I are back with another episode of Next Stop Everywhere: The Doctor Who Podcast!  And this time, we're joined by special guest companion Heidi Jenkins as we explore the David Tennant classic, "Blink"!

Exploring this fan-favorite Series Three episode from 2007, Jesse, Heidi and I discuss things like Heidi's introduction to Doctor Whoher favorite Doctor, watching classic Doctors as homework, a Weeping Angel nightlight, Academy Award-nominated actress Carey Mulligan, having your best friend being sent back in time, wanting Sally Sparrow as a companion, the Doctor being a shifty layabout while Martha has to work, ranking the Weeping Angels as monsters, wondering why "Blink" is considered a great gateway introduction to Doctor Who considering the Doctor is barely in it, wondering why no one is concerned that Sally's best friend has vanished, wondering why the Tenth Doctor doesn't go find one of his other selves on Earth in 1969, our Reverse the Polarity segment, breaking down the second Series Nine trailer, and more!

And for those who still aren't aware of this yet, we're available on iTunes RIGHT HERE as well as Stitcher RIGHT HERE, so please subscribe and tell your friends about us. If you're looking for direct MP3 downloads, you can find them RIGHT HERE as well. Oh, and don't forget we have an officially official Next Stop Everywhere Facebook page and Twitter account, so be sure to Like and/or Follow us, okay?

Be sure to come back next week for our review of the Christopher Eccleston story "Father's Day" and look for more of Next Stop Everywhere on iTunes, Libsyn, Soundcloud, Stitcher and the Southgate Media Group website!

THE FANDOM ZONE 020: "Going Rogue" is Up!

"Believe me, it took much more than watching Oliver do the salmon ladder to make me trust him."
-- Felicity Smoak to Barry Allen, The Flash: "Going Rogue"

After taking a week off, Karen Lindsay and I are finally back with another new episode of The Fandom Zone Podcast!  

This week's reviews of comics on television include:

Birds of Prey 1x07 -- "Split"
The Flash 1x04 -- "Going Rogue"

We talk about things like dissociative identity disorder, Harley Quinn working for the New Gotham Police Department, wondering where The Flash is in Birds of Prey continuity, leaving mannequins behind for your split personality, the awkwardness of flirting with someone at a murder crime scene, hanging out at the Gotham Arboretum, wondering why no one knows Dr. Harleen Quinzel is Harley Quinn, Ray Stevens' "The Streak," Felicity Smoak being better on The Flash than Arrow, Felicity needing a bad boy, the awkwardness of Eddie playing love songs in Joe's car, speculating on Zoom and the Reverse-Flash, the awkwardness of Harrison Wells finding out Cisco built a weapon to stop The Flash, Wentworth Miller and Dominic Purcell, who should be in the big Rogues team-up, Black Adam, Dexter Myles and the Flash Museum, Captain Cold's abusive father, Iris evaluating Felicity as Barry's potential girlfriend, Matt Ryan returning as John Constantine, early thoughts on the Supergirl and Lucifer pilots, some comics on TV news, and more!

You can check out the episode HERE and for those of you who use iTunes, we're already available HERE, so please subscribe and rate us! If direct download MP3s are more your thing, you can find those HERE as well. In addition, we have The Fandom Zone show page on Facebook, which you can check out HERE. And we're also on Twitter using the account @FandomZoneCast.

Be sure to come back next week for our takes on the eighth episode of the 2002-03 WB series Birds of Prey and a mystery episode of Arrow, right here on The Fandom Zone Podcast!