ByJohn Dean, writer at
Been an avid comic reader my whole life, Spidey was my first comic and quickly became my fav super hero (25 years later and nothing's change
John Dean

Now that the hype of Comic Con 2015 has well and truly subsided I wanted to discuss the big movie trailer's and teaser's that were released (leaked) giving us our first proper look at these highly publicized films currently in development. So what exactly was shown? Well since Marvel was a no show, the spotlight was firmly placed on DC's upcoming slate of films, and boy did they utilise it. Zack Snyder's much hyped film, Batman Vs Superman got an all new extended trailer, featuring our first real glimpse of Lex Luthor, Wonder Woman, and apparently Batman going all operation desert-storm. Not to mention a good look at the all new batmobile plus a possible Jason Todd story line (a glimpse of Robin's outfit plastered in taunting grafitti, obviously the Joker) Fan service was in maximum overdrive, capping off the trailer was a stand off between these two truly iconic comic book heroes. In my opinion Affleck will crush it. I know it. I've always been an Affleck fan, have been since the Kevin Smith days. He is a great actor that made some terrible choices early on in his career (who hasn't) but surely by now he has proven the public wrong? Such outcry, over a well known actor, who has a towering physique, and a big jaw to match? So he looks the part, like a dead ringer really, but can't act? Right. Star of Hollywoodland, The Town, Gone Girl... all brilliant masterpieces. Everyone hate's the poor guy, don't really understand it? When I ask others why so much hate, the answer is always something along the lines of Daredevil sucked. True, but the film sucking is hardly the actor's fault, come now people. Jesse Eisenberg's Luthor casting didn't fare much better in terms of fan-rage, and honestly, I wasn't sold on him doing the character justice. Just like the Joker there has been a long legacy of great live action Luthor's. He is one of the most popular villains in comic culture, wonderfully played by Gene Hackman in the original film's. Next Kevin Spacey depicted a perfectly smug and sinister version in Superman Returns. Even Smallville's Michael Rosenbaum was pretty darn great in the role on the long running television series. I like Eisenberg, The double was one of the best film's I've seen all year, and he was brilliant in it, but I just didn't think he was a good fit. After viewing the trailer I'm happy to say he looks to embody the essence of the character. Sporting a ridiculous hair cut/wig, he seems to have just the right amount of charismatic arrogance the character is known for. Will he join the ranks, as yet another great version of the character? Only time will tell. Regardless, I am super pumped for this release. It's momentous. Supes and Bats sharing the same film? Wonder Woman too? Aquaman you say? Sounds too good to be true. Marvel currently own Hollywood, about time someone showed some competition. Saying that, Avengers 2 had one of the most epic trailers ever filmed. Left me floored, and if you read my review you'll know exactly what that supposed thematically "dark" film turned out to actually be, one giant let down. So fingers crossed Batman vs Superman lives up to the hype train.

I'm actually pumped for Affleck's take on Batman
I'm actually pumped for Affleck's take on Batman

In other shocking news, we were treated to a leaked trailer for the Suicide Squad, the all new, big DC blockbuster, featuring a team of dispensable comic villains. This is a serious gamble in my opinion. Sure us fans all know of Deadshot (who unlike Will Smith is not African American in the comics) Amanda Waller, Harley Quin, Killer Croc, Captain Boomerang and of the squads antics, but to the non comic reader, hells no! Luckily for the sake of recognition we're treated to our first real Joker glimpse, and for that, if nothing else, it was memorable. Disappointment's? Will Smith humanising the role of what should be a calculating cold blooded killer. From the trailer, it felt like Will Smith in every role I've ever seen him in. Not Deadshot. Like at all. I get the impression Deadshot is in some ways at least, the hero of the piece, which is so at odds with the comics its laughable. I actually like Will Smith. I dig his Sci-fi film choices. Though sometimes bordering on corny, he is always a likable dude. I robot/Iam Legend/MIB/Independence Day/Hancock, yes they have flaws and are by no means perfect films but in my opinion are all entirely watchable (with the possible exception of ID4? I remember sitting in the cinema as a kid, cringing as he punched the Alien in the face spouting "Welcome to earth" Ugh, I was 10 years old and thought the attempt at humour beneath me. Maybe I was one jaded kid but doubt it's gotten better with age, perhaps a rewatch is in order?) Will Smith can play Will Smith well. No denying that. He straddles a fine line between comedy and annoying but never actually crosses it into grating territory. He can be serious, but always in a flawed good guy, just down on his luck, kind of way. Or he's a smart ass that likes to big note and talk himself up at every opportunity, but always a nice guy who never appears overly unlikable or too arrogant. This is the typical Will Smith role. Aspects of these traits are prevalent in all his film's. I have no issue with that. I know what to expect with Will Smith and mostly, with those expectation's firmly in place, he doesn't let me down. What is disappointing is it seems we aren't getting Deadshot at all. Just a down on his luck everyman. A Will Smith staple, clad in Deadshot attire. Oh well, at least I know what to expect from Will Smith. I'll only be disappointed if I go in expecting a proper Deadshot depiction, and in this day and age, who expects proper depictions anymore?

People are whinging about Batman's cameo inclusion in the film's trailer, like he isn't needed, just there for brand name. Well I got news for you, he is truly needed. He is needed, just like Joker is needed. Us comic fans need to separate ourselves from geek train of thought sometimes. We grew up with character's like Deathstroke and the Suicide Squad. We know all the backstory and history. We do. Nobody else does. Bats, Joker and Harley give the film some much needed gravitas. This is the first film. This will get the character's known, but it has to succeed. Bats and crew are making sure this film gets a sequel, a sequel that won't need the more popular name's, because those no name's that starred in this hit film, suddenly won't be no name's anymore. Just ask Star Lord or Rocket Raccoon. In all honesty, I don't really wanna see a brand new Joker interpretation or Harley's first big screen debut, or even Killer Croc's for that matter, without Batman ties in some way. These are some of Bats most well known rogues. He need's to make an appearance, in some capacity at least.

Suicide Squad is something of a gamble for DC
Suicide Squad is something of a gamble for DC

Of course it's Joker who everyone's talking about. I'm torn, I love the Joker. He would have to be my all time favorite villain. Jack Nicholson was great, but not nearly menacing enough. Ledger was brilliant, and brought an anarchic energy to the role. Though a little too realistic to be a faithful depiction. Ledger wasn't Jokey enough for the Joker. Lacking in weaponised props and laughing gas, he more than made up for it with psychotic outbursts and unhinged qualities. I was floored by Ledgers performance and think it'll go down in history as one of the all time cinematic great villains. His tragic death immortalizing the role even further. Who could possibly follow that? When I heard rumour's of Leto, I literally squealed in delight. A perfect follow up to Ledger. He is one of my all time favorite actors and I've never seen him put in anything resembling a bad performance. Bad film's perhaps on occasion? *cough* Alexander*cough*, but never a bad performance. He's always been a fantastic actor. Despite being front man to one of the most generic emo band's ever, Leto always had a pretty darn impressive filmography. Like Ledger, mostly bordering on the off kilter. Starring in such iconic films as American Psycho/Fight Club/Lord of War/Dallas Buyers Club/Requiem for a Dream... the guy really is a bloody dynamo. I suppose 30 seconds to Mars aren't too bad really. I mean they are pretty good at typical, generic emo music BUT they will never be as brilliant as AFI no matter how hard they try, and don't you forget it (Yep you got a die-hard AFI fan for life right here) which brings me to my issue. I am positive Leto will be great. He is always great, why would this time, with all the hype, why would this be the time for Leto to go "screw it, I'm not going to put in any effort" it make's no sense? Judging from trailer first impressions, he really embody's the character too, perfectly fidgety and a touch hysterical. He appears truly unhinged. That voice!!! WOW! He is Joker no doubt about that... but, boy does he look crummy. Like laughably bad, and not in a loony, psycho way. No, in a "my God, really?" kind of way. At what point of pre-production did everyone do 'Meth' and convince themselves all these silly and bizarre inclusions to the character were in benefit of the film? Speaking of 'Meth', replacing white face makeup with pale skin, baggy eyes and metal teeth, body plastered in tattoo's, give's the perception of a strung out, junkie punk rocker, and definitely not the clown prince of crime. Those tattoo's! Fucking hell, this forced meta is a horrible idea. He is the Joker, we get it, you don't have to keep trying to prove it to us by writing (and this is totally literal I swear) "HAHAHAHAHA" up his arm, just like you don't need to prove how intimidating he is, sporting metal teeth and neck tatts. It's the freaking Joker. He is creepy because he is a batshit crazy, cold blooded, psychopath. No need for these cheap intimidation tactics with new age "street" fashion. It's all a bit tragic. Like I said I'm torn. Leto will be great I have no doubt. Just would have preferred a more faithful interpretation of the character, same goes for Smith's Deadshot. As for the rest, all look well cast, with Margot Robbie being the stand out as Harley Quin. Sporting Harley's trademark grin, she is crazy hot (I've had a crush on her since her neighbours day's) and looks to display the right amount of nutiness the role requires.

Marvel may have been hiding out until the D23 expo to show off new information but Fox was there to pick up the slack and show off some exciting new trailers for they're side of the Marvel Universe. Fantastic Four was on the frontline's but unfortunately only a new trailer featuring a lot of stuff we had already seen was shown. X-Men Apocalypse the latest entry in the X franchise had fans buzzing with some new video showing off all the new iterations of classic returning X-Men like Cyclops, Jean and Storm, as well as our first glimpse of the big man himself, Apocalypse. Though it was the Merc with a mouth, Mr Wade Wilson, otherwise known as Deadpool, Marvel's fan favorite assassin, who was on the tip's of all fanboy's tongues. Featuring a surprise R rated trailer (which was also leaked, for all the world to see, albeit in dodgy low quality format, damn it) giving fans their first glimpse of his all new big screen incarnation, washing away the awful taste in fans mouth's left by X-Men Origins terrible depiction of the character, joining Suicide Squad as the most talked about up and comers.

Deadpool is sure to be unlike any other X- film, and how freakin awesome is that costume?
Deadpool is sure to be unlike any other X- film, and how freakin awesome is that costume?

So there you have it. Like a breath of fresh air we have some all new, all original comic film's in the works with a strong focus on DC. After year's of following the Marvel cinematic universe's every single move it's nice to be excited about something different. Of course I'll be first in line for the Cap 3: Civil War premier, but I'm now equally excited to see the kind of world DC and WB create, with all their film's currently on the horizon. A mention of Green Lantern Corps, the all new Green Lantern film, presumably featuring more than just the confirmed Hal Jordon (being a corps film obviously others ie. John Stewart and Kyle Rayner help fill out the ranks) as well as our first glimpse of Wonder Woman in costume (Batman VS Superman) leading to her very own solo project. As well as Aquaman, Flash and Cyborg (wicked) all having confirmed solo ventures in the near future. Plus the totally original (and massive gamble) villain centric Suicide Squad and rumour's of an all new, Affleck directed Batman trilogy to follow on from Batman Vs Superman, it's pretty easy to get excited. I'll always be a lifelong Marvel fanboy and my excitement for all their upcoming project's won't soon diminish. Daredevil convinced me that any Marvel/Netflix collaboration is cause for celebration so of course I'm super excited for the introduction of the Punisher, as well as all the other tv shows (Luke Cage, Iron Fist, Jessica Jones) not to mention, on the cinematic side of things, a much needed injection of new blood soon on the way to help with possible sequel fatigue (Doc Strange, Black Panther, Cap Marvel, Inhumans) and most importantly of all (in my eyes anyway) Marvel's confirmed upcoming Sony collaboration involving my all time favorite hero bar none, Spider-Man, has got my fanboy brain running in fever overload at all the different possibilities. With all that said, I'm happy to see DC finally stepping up to the plate, and after all the talk and promises, finally seeing both new trailers presented at this years Comic Con, and getting our first glimpse at all the meticulous world building and careful planning on offer, make's me excited to see the finished product. I am no blind fanboy. My blood may pump Marvel and Spider-Man may be my personal favorite, but I am open to more than just one great comic universe on screen. In fact I welcome it. Besides, despite having a deep love for all thing's Marvel, Batman was always my second favorite hero. Thanks Frank Miller :D Your stellar run on Wolverine and Daredevil was my sole reason for giving DC a go and discovering the brilliance of Batman in the first place.

So what did we learn from Comic Con 2015? Well DC are truly a force to be reckoned with. Marvel are so confident they don't even have to involve themselves in Comic Con these day's, and Fox Film's have a decent fight ahead of them. X-Men is their bread and butter but it's good to see them try and expand a little and try some new thing's. Both Fantastic Four and Deadpool prove this theory. Both the start of a new franchise. Both trying something different from the typical, traditional adaptations. A gamble that could pay off big in terms of word of mouth and box office takings. Luckily us fans don't need to worry about that nonsense and while Marvel/DC/Fox fight it out on the big screen, it's good to see the only real winner is actually us fans. I say bring on the film's.

That's all from me. Thank's so much for reading and as usual, hit me up in the comments if you would like to share any thoughts or opinions :D

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