Goodbye, Stan Lee! In memory of your heroes

Eluded by Spider-Man’s fame characters

Reading time 9 minutes

Stan Lee, the legend created Marvel Comics, has passed away at the age of 95. The artist, writer, producer, actor, and neither more nor less than “a person who made comics cool” – that is how the millions will remember Stan Lee. People will love his worlds and heroes as much as they loved him. However, there are characters which were not as popular as Spider-Man and X-Men.

Stripperella

One of the most famous not-popular characters is Strippella – a stripper named Erotica Jones who is also a secret agent.

The DVD cover of Strippella

Besides the enhanced reflexes and senses, superhuman strength, and an astonishing intelligence, Erotica can boast “sexy” martial arts and the arsenal of high-technological devices of questionable usefulness.

In 2003, debuted the eponymous TV-series where the main character was played by Pamela Anderson who gave Strippella her appearance and voice. These superhero series created for adults were rather comic making fun of genre cliches and conditionalities.

Despite the overall success of the series, it was closed down after 13 episodes because of the dispute between Stan Lee and Pamela Anderson. Another reason for this cancellation was that the ex-stripper Janet Clover claimed that Stan Lee stole her idea of this character when she discussed it during a lap dance.

Lightspeed

The next superhero on our list is another secret agent Daniel Light, also known as Lightspeed.

The box-art of Lightspeed

Daniel Light is a government agent who has the ability of super-speed, but this superpower puts him under a risk of getting fatal metabolic damage. Lightspeed gained his powers after surviving a building collapse triggered by the half-man, half-snake terrorist, called Python.

The movie about Lightspeed was released in 2006, and, to put it mildly, it hardly got any responses. Neither the Stan Lee’s status nor Jason Connery  starring as Daniel Light helped the motion picture to stand out.

Mosaic

The next superhero appearing under the Stan Lee Presents banner is Mosaic, also known as Maggie Nelson, aspiring young actress, who gained chameleon-like powers after some supernatural circumstances.

Бокс-арт "Мозаики"
The box-art of Mosaic

Maggie was exposed to an electrical storm and a magic rune which her father, an Interpol agent, had planned to study. After getting under this ancient spell, she possessed the ability to change her appearance, to merge with the environment, and to speak the language of an ancient race Chameliel, the owners of the magic rune. Using her new powers, Maggie investigates series of murders with Chameliel’s involvement and the origin of ancient artifacts.

The eponymous cartoon film was released in January 2007. This time the audience’s reaction was way better than in case of Lightspeed movie.

The Condor

After less than four months, another animated film with an original superhero The Condor saw the light. This movie tells the story of Tony Valdez, a professional skateboarder by day and an avenger in mask by night.

Бокс-арт "Кондора"
The box-art of The Condor

During a dangerous zombie attack, caused by nano-technologies invented by Valdez family, Tony gets severely injured and loses both of his parents. However, his friend Sammi returns him the mobility with similar nano-technology. The action has its side effect which gives Tony superhuman abilities. After gaining his capability to walk, The Condor starts the investigation of his family’s murder, hoping to revenge the killer.

The Condor film was accepted better than  Lightspeed, but comparably worse the Mosaic one. Overall, the audience took the film relatively well.

Chakra The Invincible

One of the most interesting characters is Chakra – an Indian superhero created in collaboration with Graphic India studio.

The cover of the third issue of Chakra: The Invincible

Raju Rai, Chakra The Invincible, is an ordinary boy from Mumbai conducting a research on chakra energy with the scientist Dr. Singh. Together they develop a technological suit that weaponizes all the Chakras in the body. Raju can fly, emit the energy beams and has superpowers. Using his superhuman abilities, he protects Mumbai from different scourges and dangerous villains.

Chakra The Invincible is one of the most successful Stan Lee’s original projects. The story turned into three animation films which were released in English and Hindi, series of comics, video games and toys.

Karakuridouji Ultimo

You would not expect the Stan Lee’s authorship behind the next story referring to Karakuridouji Ultimo. This character was created by Stan Lee and Hiroyuki Takei, a Japanese manga artist, best known as the creator of Shaman King.

Обложка первого тома манги "Механический мальчик Ultimo"
The cover of the first issue of  Karakuridouji Ultimo

This manga is about two robots, Ultimo and Vice, created in feudal Japan by Dr. Dunstan to be “perfect good” and “perfect evil”. Ultimo possesses the ability to transform into animal-like shapes, such as lions and cranes, and to manipulate time and space.

The pilot of Karakuridouji Ultimo was published in 2008, and it was positively met by the audience intrigued by a new shift in Stan Lee’s works.

Heroman

Another product of collaboration with Japanese manga artists is Heroman created by Stan Lee and Tamon Ohta.

A frame from Heroman. To the left – Joey, to the right – Heroman

Heroman, to be more precise, is actually two characters in one. On one hand, it is orphaned American boy Joey, from another — a robot Heroman which Joey fixed himself. Together they resist the alien attack caused by Joey’s school teacher.

Originally, Heroman was a broken toy that Joey repaired, but could not make work. However, a strange bolt of lightning brought Heroman to life, turned it into a giant robot, and gave Joey a special gauntlet. With its help, Joey could control Heroman.

For the first time Heroman was released as a manga in 2009 and has been publishing until 2012. Then, in 2010, the Bones studio produced an anime adaptation consisted of  26 episodes

Джонсон пожертвовал «Жемчугом дракона» ради сенаторского кресла

Композитор аниме Dragon Ball Z стал сенатором штата Техас

Reading time 2 minutes

Sorry, this entry is only available in Russian.

Heroes of popular manga are coming to life

My Hero Academia is going to be a new Hollywood blockbuster

Reading time 3 minutes

Legendary Entertainment announced the production of a live-action film adaptation of the popular manga My Hero Academia. For the first time, this information appeared on informational websites Nerdist and The Hollywood Reporter.

From the side of Legendary Entertainment, the film will be produced by Alex Garcia (Kong: Skull Island, Godzilla (2014), Krampus) and Jay Ashenfelter (Pacific Rim Uprising, Winners TV-series), and from Shueisha, manga’s owner & publisher, side – by Ryosuke Yoritomi. The Toho company will be managing the project’s distribution in Japan. The information about directors, cast, and release dates is not revealed yet.

Фрейм из манги "Моя геройская академия"
A frame from My Hero Academia

Considering the popularity of the original manga and its anime adaptation, this production of an action film based on the same story seems to be a sensible move. Over a couple of years, Hollywood had tried to remake the most popular Japanese mangas and anime-adaptations into real blockbusters, however, these attempts crucially failed. For instance, the most recent film adaptation of Ghost in the Shell with Scarlett Johansson turned out to be a complete disaster. This film got a lot of negative reviews and ended up costing the producers around $60 million.

Legendary Entertainment takes a huge risk by deciding to produce a feature film adaptation of My Hero Academia. Although, taking into account the original theme and overall success of superhero films, this risk can be justified.

 

My Hero Academia is about an alternative world where 80% of population has developed powers, known as quirks, and superheroes are executive fighters against crime. Unfortunately, Izuku Midoriya, the main character, was born without any quirk, but he has a big dream of becoming a professional superhero.

Kohei Horikoshi created the original manga My Hero Academia in 2014. It was published by Sueisha in Weekly Shonen Jump magazine. Now the series has 17 million copies worldwide, and it became the fourth popular manga in 2017. The anime-adaptation appeared on big screens for the first time in 2016, the third season of which was finished in September 2018. The full-length movie My Hero Academia: Two Heroes premiered earlier in August 2018.  

Шоу отменяется: нечего показать

Sony не станет проводить PlayStation Experience в этом году

Reading time 2 minutes

Sony решила отказаться от проведения своей ежегодной видеоигровой конвенции PlayStation Experience в 2018 году. Об этом сообщил председатель Sony Interactive Entertainment Worldwide Studios Шон Лейден (Shawn Layden).

Об отмене ежегодного мероприятия Лейден сообщил во время подкаста PlayStation Blogcast  28 сентября этого года. В качестве основной причины он назвал нежелание компании разочаровывать поклонником малым количеством новых анонсов.

«Я знаю, некоторых это разочарует, но мы приняли решение не проводить PlayStation Experience в 2018 году», – сказал Лейден.

Шон Лейден на PSX 2015
Шон Лейден на PSX 2015

«Недавно мы выпустили Spider-Man, а в 2019 году нас ждёт выход таких проектов как Dreams и Days Gone. Но этого недостаточно для того, чтобы собрать людей в одном месте в Северной Америке и организовать для них шоу. Мы не хотим вызвать большие ожидания, а после не оправдать их. Это было сложное решение, но в этом году PlayStation Experience не состоится», – добавил он.

Тем не менее, отмена PSX 2018 не означает, что новой информации по уже анонсированным и будущим проектам не будет. В том же PS Blogcast Лейден обозначил, что Sony намерена использовать PS Blog и свои социальные сети для коммуникации с поклонниками.

Это объявление стало ответом на просьбы фанатов прояснить отсутствие новостей о датах проведения конвенции. Как пишет Polygon, из-за отсутствия какой-либо информации о PSX 2018 в последние два месяца перед предполагаемым временем проведения выставки, некоторые фанаты обращались к сотрудникам SIE в социальных сетях за разъяснениями.

Помимо отсутствия у компании новых проектов, обозреватели выделяют и другие возможные причины отмены мероприятия. Так, портал IGN отмечает, что уже PSX 2017 было не таким «тяжеловесным», как предыдущие мероприятия, что Sony стала чаще использовать PS Blog и свои социальные сети в качестве площадки для анонсов. В качестве примера Джонатан Дорнбуш (Jonathon Dornbush), редактор портала, приводит анонс PlayStation Classic и оглашение даты выпуска God of War на портале компании. Российский ресурс «Игромания» также пишет, что отмена конвенции в этом году может свидетельствовать о том, что текущему флагману Sony – PlayStation 4, «готовится замена».

Главный холл PSX 2017
Главный холл PSX 2017

Первая игровая конвенция Sony состоялась в 2014 году. С тех пор компания проводила мероприятия PlayStation Experience в начале декабря каждый из последних четырех лет. PSX является одной из ключевых площадок Sony для связи с поклонниками и анонсирования новых проектов. На конвенциях компания показывает и анонсирует новые проекты для систем PlayStation. Компания неоднократно игнорировала сторонние мероприятия ради проведения более насыщенного собственного шоу. В этом году Sony впервые отказалась от проведения ставшей традицией выставки.