Over the past seven years, writer Robert Kirkman (Battle Pope, Invincible) has found quite a literary and theatrical phenomenon with his series, The Walking Dead. The story follows a band of unlikely heroes in their daily trials and tribulations, given their extraordinary circumstances in a world devastated by a zombie apocalypse. In 2010, AMC released The Walking Dead as a television series starring actors Jon Bernthal (Shane), Andrew Lincoln (Rick), and Sarah Wayne Callies (Lori), which garnered such a positive response that the network ordered an extended, 13-episode second season.
For fans of the original comic book, AMC’s show breathed new life into their beloved series and also offered the chance to invite new fans to the WD fold. The television show has launched the zombified story into cult status, helped by the AMC brand and its recent history of successful shows (Mad Men, Breaking Bad).
The following is an interview with actor Jon Bernthal, who shared his thoughts with Fanboy Comics Managing Editor Barbra Dillon on the future of his character, his own zombie apocalypse contingency plan, and more about Season 2. (Special thanks to David Bliss for his assistance in securing this interview with Mr. Bernthal!)
This interview was conducted on Thursday, January 13, 2011.
I recently read The Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins, and I must encourage anyone who hasn’t already read the books to get out and buy a copy today! This is one of the most engrossing series that I have ever read; you will not be disappointed if you give the series a chance. For those unfamiliar with the series, the plot is based in a post-apocalyptic world where the teenaged children of poor citizens are forced by the aristocracy to battle to the death in an annual, televised program called the Hunger Games.
On a lark, I decided to cast the main characters from the first book of the series. For those who haven’t been keeping track of The Fanboy Scoop, a HG movie is already in the works, so I wanted to get a jump on casting before Hollywood ruined another project. I will say that this cast is not ideal, given that the number of talented child actors now-a-days is scant. Had this been cast ten years ago, this movie might have been epic! Alas, I will work with what I must…
Valentine’s Day is upon us, and, as fellow geeks prepare for a weekend of romance, I feel it is my duty to provide them with some suitably dirty and nerdy cosplay options. Given that we in the geek crowd seem to be eager to dress up as our favorite stormtrooper or hobbit at the drop of Jayne’s hat, I see no reason why we shouldn’t be employing this passion to our…. well, passions! Not only are geeks experts at crafting detailed and high-caliber costumes, but they’re also more likely to be open to the idea of dressing up as Harry and Hermione before rolling in the chamber of secrets. More than one average Joe or Joette has gone running the other way when confronted with a costumed lover, but if your sex muffin has been to SDCC, then I’m sure that they’ll take one glance at your smooth threads and say with a loving voice, “I always thought Pika Chu was kind of dashing.” Below, you’ll find my top geeky Valentine’s day cosplay suggestions for both genders. If you’ve got a comic-sniffer in your life who deserves a little love this Valentine’s Day, take a hint from the Cylons and “have a plan.” These should help:
Zorba the Greek, a novel by Nikos Kazantzakis, enlightened the Western world with an exotic interpretation of premodern Greece, illustrating the country’s old-fashioned ideologies and cruel forms of justice through their rough interpretations of the law and moral code. By focusing on the unforgiving, patriarchal hierarchies of the peasants, Kazantzakis examined the society’s ideologies, strict religious guidelines, and overall way of life. Through this study, one of the novel’s themes, the application of the spirit of the law versus the letter of the law, clearly presented itself in the novel’s horrifying death scene of the “widow.” While Kazantzakis’ novel was not written to justify these actions, his description of the people and ideals of Greece successfully managed to educate the reader of their reasoning behind taking matters into their own hands.
As portrayed in the novel, premodern Greek society was much like that of ancient Greece, where men ruled over the family with an iron fist, and women served no other purpose than that of domestic creature, catering to the every whim of their husband. The common view historically was that women were inferior, sexually dangerous, and vulnerable. When described by Plato, “...the morals of women were ill reputed throughout Greece” (Jaeger 243). In fact, women without husbands were viewed as worthless and shameful in the eyes of the entire community, including both men and women alike. As was the case in Zorba the Greek, a widow in the village refused to remarry and was then scorned by the men that wanted her and the women that wanted to be her. In describing the widow, a villager commented, “She’s as you might say, the mistress of the whole village: you put out the light and you imagine it’s not the wife you take in your arms, but the widow” (Kazantzakis 97).
Recently, the Fanboy Comics staff has been trying to keep their social scene extra geeky by hosting movie nights at Fanboy Comics HQ for staff and friends. We usually discuss current geek culture, chow down on appropriately geeky snacks provided by FBC Managing Editor Barbra Dillon (she’s like Martha Stewart, if Martha Steward was also a Jedi!!!), and get the chance to casually watch a film as we socialize. We have found that humorous or goofy movies selections seem to work best, so that our guests can fade in and out of the film while enjoying the others in attendance (hence why our first event was a screening of the hilarious Roger Corman Fantastic Four film!!!). That was not the case for the last evening. While I loved Zack Snyder’s Watchmen, I had yet to tackle the three-and-a-half hour long Ultimate Cut. Given the film’s controversial standing in the geek community, I was unsure of how it would play for our crowd, but I proceeded undaunted. I am proud to report that everyone, myself included, seemed glued to the screen, no matter what their feelings of the film may have been afterward. Yes, we may have had to pause mid-way through the film for a blue penis cake break, but the geeky die-hards that make up Fanboy Comics and its followers made it to the end! Nice job, gang!
The first thing I noticed about Watchmen: The Ultimate Cut was how easily I forgot that I had seen this film five or six times in theaters, as I got lost in its world once more. I know there’s a lot of criticism out there for the film and I have my own issues with certain parts of the film, but damn is it a good film! The first scene where The Comedian meets his end followed by the amazing opening credits sequence set to Bob Dylan’s "The Times They Are A-Changin’" is honestly worth the price of admission, alone! Anyways, let’s get to the unique pluses of the The Ultimate Cut. (But, if you have the opportunity, I would implore you to give Zack Snyder’s Watchmen a second viewing... and then, go read the graphic novel again just for good measure. You know you want to.
Hello, my name is Barbra, and I am in love with a geek.
Star Wars, Firefly, Halo, Buffy, Preacher, Alien, Battlestar Galactica - these are all staples in my life, all of which have seeped into my movie/TV viewing schedule, my everyday conversations, and even my apartment decor. Being in a relationship with a geek has expanded my artistic tastes and allowed me to be a part of a larger community, but, most importantly, it has provided me with the chance to connect with someone who holds these and other areas of fandom near and dear to his heart. For the throngs of men and women who may be longing for similar relationship bliss this Valentine’s Day, I submit to you the following suggestions for finding love with a geek (or coming to terms with your geek-tastic significant other).
“I hope to show you reflections of your friends, your neighbors, your families, and yourselves, and what their reactions are to the extreme situations on this book.”
- Robert Kirkman
Over the past seven years, writer Robert Kirkman (Battle Pope, Invincible) has found quite a literary and theatrical phenomenon with his series, The Walking Dead. The story follows a band of unlikely heroes in their daily trials and tribulations, given their extraordinary circumstances in a world devastated by a zombie apocalypse. Initiated as a graphic novel series in 2003, the books were met with rave reviews from critics and fans alike, most notably with its receipt of the Eisner Award in 2010 for Best Continuing Series. In 2010, AMC released The Walking Dead as a television series, which garnered such a positive response that the network ordered an extended, 13-episode second season.
I was very excited to see this film. Aliens and Predator were my bread and butter as a kid, and Predator, in my opinion, still stands strong to this day, outdoing most current action films. Robert Rodriguez returning the Predator franchise to its former glory was not something I was about to miss! Sadly, while Predators makes a fine chapter in the Predator universe, it squanders the opportunity to upstage the original the way some feel Aliens did to Alien.
The setting for this movie is brilliant, and it’s a shame that it is not used to its full potential. Royce (Adrian Brody), a deadly mercenary, finds himself stranded on an alien planet with other expert killers gathered from all over the earth. Apparently, this tribe of predators has prepared this planet as a game preserve with prey from all over the galaxy, and now it’s trophy hunting time! The scenario is ripe with potential! Instead, the film treads too closely to the original, never seizing the strength of its new and unique plot.
Buffy Season Eight has been a long, ambitious journey, but, as with all seasons, it has come to an end. As with other well-constructed shows, the previous seasons of Buffy featured overarching themes that were revisited in each season’s finale. While Buffy has struggled to convince its fan base that this was still possible in Buffy's venture into comics, Season Eight and its messages can now be viewed as a whole. While not flawless, the season remained a major accomplishment for the Buffy team and gave a Whedonish view of what happens when you change the world and how, despite good intentions, no one can completely hold onto the mantel of hero or villain when operating on a global level.
As is the case with many young children, I was fairly obsessed with dinosaurs at a young age. I was so obsessed, in fact, that Tyrannosaurus Rex quickly became my personal hero and could do no wrong. T-Rex killed a herbivore? A guy’s gotta eat! T-Rex has small arms? That’s the way he wants it! T-Rex is fighting Triceratops? Ain’t no Triceratops walking away from this battle! Understandably, I was extremely upset upon my first viewing of King Kong (1933) when my boy, T-Rex, was brutally killed by the big, dumb ape. That day of my youth forever cemented both my distrust of large apes and my undying loyalty to the Tyrant Lizard. So, of course, it was a given that when my hero returned to the silver screen in 1993 (sans his big, hairy murderer) I was sold before he (She, actually, given that all the dinosaurs in Jurassic Park are female. I DID go around and lift up the dinosaur’s skirts!) crushed his first Ford Explorer. Obviously, I wasn’t the only one enamored with Steven Spielberg’s Jurassic Park considering the massive box office numbers it pulled in ($914,691,118 worldwide), the two sequels it spawned, and the fact that it bares sole credit for making Velociraptor a household name.