Tag: Marvel Studios

Has Wizard World Left the Average Fan Behind?

It’s almost May which means that ‘Con Season is nearly upon us.  Convention centers and hotel ballrooms across this great country of ours will soon be filled with cosplayers, panels, and merchandise that touches all corners of fandom, everything from Dr. Who and Star Trek to The Walking Dead and My Little Pony.

While nearly a quarter million people will be descending onto San Diego Comic Con in late July, most genre fans will find themselves walking into a convention put on by Wizard World.  In 2016, Wizard World is putting on 19 events (down from 25 in 2015), with stops in nearly every major metro market in the continental United States.

wizardworldfloorAlmost two weeks ago it was announced that Wizard World suffered a $4.25 million loss in 2015.  Overall convention revenue was down roughly 33% in 2015 and when combined with their obligations to the albatross of ConTV, a digital geek content channel, it made for a rough go of things for the ubiquitous convention promotion.  It came as no surprise that Wizard World President & CEO John Macaluso resigned from his position shortly after this news broke.

I’ve been attending Wizard World Philly pretty regularly for the better part of a decade and have seen the show grow exponentially in that time frame.  Now, there were years where the biggest booth was for Norton AntiVirus and there was no representation from Marvel or DC Comics on the show floor.  Oddly enough, there was always a Bath Fitter booth, which must be some kind of union thing.

Over the last five years Wizard World has become a very large (and very expensive) autograph fest spread over four days taking over nearly all of the Pennsylvania Convention Center’s recent addition.Four-day tickets will run you $89.95, with one day admissions varying in price.  (**Pro Tip, Saturdays are notoriously known to be shit shows, I prefer Fridays and Sundays).

These days, most of the show floor was been ceded to Autograph Alley, where genre A-Listers like Chris Evans, Chris Helmsworth and Norman Reedus will sign autographs for fans that paid anywhere from $350-1300 for VIP packages that guarantee signings, photo ops, panel seating, and “exclusive laminate passes”.  Vendors have seen their booth prices increase on an annual basis, so much so that some local comic shops don’t even set up anymore.

ww_hemsworth-evans-hiddlestonPresently Wizard World is advertising an Avengers VIP Package for $1350.00 where you can meet Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth and Tom Hiddleston. That’s a mortgage payment for what would be an amazing memory, but one that your average fan will be paying off at 16% interest rate because they threw that charge on their credit card.  But at what point is it just too much, and fans refuse to show up?

Here’s the thing.  They always show up the Pennsylvania Convention Center will be packed out this June with the stench of unwashed Wookies and the Reading Terminal Market will be overtaken by Harley Quinn cosplayers.  And inevitably there will be a very sad 7-year old sobbing on the show floor who won’t understand why he won’t be able to meet Captain America.

 

Did a German LEGO Catalog Reveal A Giant Plot Point for Captain America: Civil War?

The LEGO Group prides itself in its secrecy and leaks of their upcoming product line are few and far between.  Earlier today, images from a German retailer catalog showed off three sets based on the upcoming Marvel Studios film Captain America: Civil War.

LEGO_thumbIt looks like that for the first time we will be getting minifigs versions of Falcon, Crossbones, Agent 13 and Black Panther. And of course there will be the requisite updates to Captain America, Black Widow, War Machine, Iron Man, Winter Soldier.  Overall, the sets seem pretty great with all the necessary flick-fire missiles and extraneous vehicles that will most likely not even make it into the final film.

However there is one more giant minifig update after the jump, but be warned there are potential SPOILERS ahead!

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The Punisher Hits Hell’s Kitchen Next Season on ‘Daredevil’

Marvel and Netflix certainly enjoyed near universal adulation for their new take on Daredevil.  Many like myself were worried that lightning couldn’t strike twice.  How would the showrunners up the ante on season two which is due next year?

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Well, with today’s announcement that Jon Berenthal (The Walking Dead, Fury) would be joining the cast as Frank Castle aka The Punisher, it looks as there won’t be anything to worry about.

In a statement, Jeph Loeb, Marvel’s Head of Television had nothing but excellent things to say about that actor:

Jon Bernthal brings an unmatched intensity to every role he takes on, with a potent blend of power, motivation and vulnerability that will connect with audiences. Castle’s appearance will bring dramatic changes to the world of Matt Murdock and nothing will be the same.

As much as I loved Thomas Jane in the role, I really do think that Berenthal is perfect casting.  I think that this is setting up a great conflict for season two, with the various factions of organized crime in New York City will be trying to get a foothold while The Kingpin is sitting behind bars.

via [/Film]

 

Arm Chair Toy Fair ’15 – Ultra Magnus Surprises, Terminator Goes MegaBloks & Kotobukiya’s Hulkbuster

ArmchairSDCC14

It is proving to be infinitely difficult trying to keep up with the bevy of announcements that came out of Toy Fair.  While many were disappointed about the lack of new Star Wars product due to pending release of Star Wars The Force Awakens, several properties from film, comics and television surprised everyone with some great new product for 2015.

Ultra Magnus Makes a Surprise Appearance – Despite my lifelong love affair with the Transformers, I can honestly say I have not actually purchased one in three years.  That may all change with the Generations Leader Class Ultra Magnus, which is based on his current look from the IDW Comics continuity.

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Of all the reveals at this year’s Toy Fair I may have to say as a HUGE fan of the Generation One inspired Generations line … Ultra Magnus may be my favorite so far, even if he can’t hold onto the Matrix of Leadership for more than five minutes.  [via TFW2005]

Image via Action Figure Insider

Image via Action Figure Insider

Terminator Genisys Goes Mega Bloks?!?

It looks as though Mega Bloks picked up the license for construction sets based on the upcoming film Terminator Genisys.  During Mattel’s “collector’s event” Sunday morning they had a rather impressive T-800 bust on display.

This is a huge step up for the Terminator franchise being that the last construction sets were made by a cheap Chinese LEGO-knock off company.

I have not seen any details regarding the license, but from what was on display it appears that the sets coming out this year are for the new film only.  I will update accordingly as more information makes its way onto the Internet.  As a LEGO loyalist, I have typically veered away from Mega Bloks; but it seems like they have done a good job with their HALO, Call of Duty and Titanfall construction sets. [via Action Figure Insider]

Hulkbuster! Hulkbuster! HULKBUSTER!!!!  From everyone that was on the ground at Toy Fair, it was clear that Marvel is doubling down on Tony Stark’s fan favorite suit of armor to be a big seller later this year.  Of everything Hulkbuster related, I must say that I am completely in lust Kotobukiya’s Avengers Age of Ultron Hulkbuster ArtFx statue.

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Image via Toy News International

 

Release date and MSRP is still to be decided, but figure on the second half of 2015 with a price point around $250.00 [via ToyNewsI]

Finally, A Felicity Smoak I Can Take Home Without Being Arrested – DC Collectibles showed off the latest action figures from the pair of highly successful CW series The Flash and Arrow.  Later this year fans can expect a masked Oliver Queen as Arrow, Arsenal, John Diggle and Felicity Smoak.  On The Flash side of things we will get Barry Allen as The Flash along with Captain Cold. [via ToyArk]

 

 

And Here’s Our First Official Look at Age of Avengers LEGO Sets for 2015!

Earlier today a German 2015 LEGO Catalog made its way onto the LEGO subreddit giving us the almost official looks at the Avengers: Age of Ultron LEGO sets due our way next spring.  It looks as though we will be getting six sets and all of the Avengers will be presented in glorious minifigure form.

Avengers_LEGO1 Avengers_LEGO2 Avengers_LEGO3With the power of Google Translate the sets names and character breakdowns are below:

With the power of Google Translate the sets names and character breakdowns are below:

(76029) – Iron Man vs. Ultron — includes Iron Man and 2 Ultron Drones

(76030) – Duel with Hydra — includes Hawkeye and Thor

(76031) – Hulkbuster Rescue Mission — includes Iron Man, Hulk and Ultron

(76032) – Avengers Quinjet — includes Black Widow, Ultron, Vision and Captain America

(76038) – Raid on Avengers Tower — Iron Man, Thor, Iron Legion and Ultron

(76041) -Hydra Fortress — Quicksilver, Hulk, and Captain America

Of this whole lineup I must say that 76031 Hulkbuster Rescue Mission looks to be the standout for me.  I love that brick-built Hulkbuster Armor and I like the new paint applications on the Hulk.  The new version of the Quinjet looks stealthy and once again is the only way to get Black Widow!  Once again it looks as though it will be mighty expensive to complete the Avengers roster as all of the new characters are spread out across multiple sets … DAMN YOU LEGO OVERLORDS!!!!

**As the set names receive their proper English translation I will be sure to update this post accordingly.

 

“Avengers: Age of Ultron” … More Like “Age of Hulkbuster”

There’s certainly a lot to digest in that Avengers: Age of Ultron trailer. It appears as though the Heroic Age of the Marvel Cinematic Universe could very well be over.  However I wanted to make sure that no one forgot about one important aspect …

THAT HULKBUSTER ARMOR THO

Av2_Hulkbuster

Hulkbuster vs. Hulk, Cap’s Shield! , Creepy Alien/Robot Bad Guy … is it May 2015 yet?

 

Breaking: The ‘Ant Man’ Trailer Has Been Seen By Some People

antman_conceptOn Sunday morning as part of an exclusive Marvel event at New York Comic Con the trailer for next summer’s Ant Man was shown for the very first time.  And from reports it seems as though the fans went crazy for it.  Apparently I missed this significant piece of news while compiling my NYCC coverage.

The crew over at Topless Robot has a description of the teaser:

The Ant Man trailer seemed to confirm a lot of the rumors that have been floating around about the plot: Michael Douglas, playing Pym, hires Scott Lang (played by Paul Rudd) to be his on-the-ground man for a heist. They argue about super-heroics and then Lang, wearing the Ant Man suit, runs towards the camera, trips, damages the helmet, and then calls an ant to take him away ….

No word as to when the Ant Man trailer will be released for the common folk; but I’d expect something during Marvel’s 75th Anniversary Special airing on ABC on November 4th.

[via Topless Robot]

 

Armchair SDCC ’14: ‘Ant Man’ Concept Art, LEGO Green Lantern, & Marty McFly Hot Toys

armchairSDCC14It’s Preview Night!  Show exclusives start to sell out and companies are getting press releases out at furious pace.  Studios are trying to get their next projects trending on Twitter, He-Man fans are already butthurt about MattyCollector, and the line for Hall H is already starting to form up. IT MUST BE SAN DIEGO COMIC CON!

It’s a quick roundup tonight because I’m tired and I’m not waiting up until 1:00AM EST to finish this thing up.  Expect the big chunks of goodness to start tomorrow and the sorrow that you aren’t there to start setting in.  Enjoy the read!

Marvel revealed a concept art poster for the now Edgar Wright-less Ant Man due out next summer.  I can’t be the only one having a hard time looking at Paul Rudd in a heroic light.  Entertainment Weekly had the exclusive reveal but it is all over the Interwebz now.

antman_concept

 

I’m pretty sure Ant Man is going to be a hard sell.  With Wright off of the project, a lot of fanboys are sure to throw some shade at this project.   [via io9]

LEGO announced one of the first DC Comics Superhero sets for 2015 Green Lantern vs. Sinestro!  Green Lantern was released as a San Diego Comic Con exclusive mini figure a couple of years back and fans were upset they were never going to be able to complete their Justice League.

gl-setThis set looks really great and features a Green Lantern Jet and Space Batman!  Expect it on store shelves next January for $19.99 [via FBTB]

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Hot Toys unveiled their 1/6th scale Marty McFly and DeLorean Time Machine and it is a thing of beauty. Word is they also have a prototype of a 1/6th scale Ellen Ripley and Power Loader from Aliens.  

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Infuriating LEGO Math: Guardians of the Galaxy Edition

This week LEGO announced their first San Diego Comic Con exclusive, Rocket the Raccoon’s War Bird from Guardians of the Galaxy.  The 145-piece set is a midi-scale space craft will come with a Rocket minifig with an all new deco and is priced at $39.99.  

SDCC_rocketwarbird

 

The Rocket included in this set is unique from his mass market counterpart which can only be found in 76020 Knowhere Escape.  So for those of you want to have the complete Guardians lineup in their coordinating uniforms, expect to spend an exorbitant sum after next week.

LEGO has made a habit of releasing fan favorite licensed minifigures.  Last year at San Diego Comic Con they gave away Spider Woman, Black Suit Superman, Green Arrow, and an alternate suit Spider-Man.  Understandably the current secondary market value of these minifigures is obscene.  Infuriating LEGO math strikes again!

via [The Brick Fan]

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