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Tuesday, February 28, 2017

There’s NOTHING Terrific About CW’s Mr. Terrific

In DC Comics Mr. Terrific is the world’s third smartest man, an Olympic level athlete, a skilled inventor, and a complete badass.

Unfortunately something got lost in the translation at Berlanti Productions. In their adaptation, Mr. Terrific is a bumbling stumbling idiot too scared to carry his own weight on the Outsiders…I mean Team Arrow.

Something got lost in the translation of Michael Holt from comic to screen. Because the character being presented as Mr. Terrific is anything but. They may call him Mr. Terrific, but he’s more like the Cowardly Lion. A guy with a tough looking outfit, but absolutely no nerve.

When it comes to Mr. Terrific I don’t see any Fair Play in how he’s being presented onscreen by Berlanti Productions. On Arrow, Green Arrow gets to be shown as strong and confident. Wild Dog gets to be shown as tough and scrappy. Ragman is shown as mysterious and creepy. Even Vigilante is presented as a battle tactician and a strategist.

Mr. Terrific was supposed to be all that and more. A master tactician, a skilled fighter, and a brilliant inventor. The equivalent of Marvel’s Black Panther. But on Arrow he’s been turned into a minstrel in a mask. With the stupid way he acts that T on his face might as well be Blackface.

Fuck you Berlanti. Fuck You.

Almost every character on Arrow has been designed to be somewhat to the source material. Unfortunately, Mr. Terrific has not been allowed to be himself at all onscreen. Either he’s played for laughs or he’s made to look like a complete WIMP onscreen. The only Black hero on the show and he’s absolutely NOTHING like his comic book counterpart.

Michael Holt’s Mr. Terrific connected with comic fans because he was an intelligent confident Black man who showed could take on the greatest challenges in the DC Universe. He earned the respect of readers because he showed he could capably take the mantle from Terry Sloan. In the years before the 2011 reboot he made his own distinct mark in the DC Universe as a respected member of the Justice Society. I don’t see him being given any of the respect he deserves on Arrow by Berlanti Productions.

Sadly, from the way things look to me, Berlanti Productions is playing Mr. Terrific dumb to make Green Arrow look more competent. And that’s just racist. I’d like to think there’d be room for Mr. Terrific to be a badass right at the side of Green Arrow on a TV show just like they were on Justice League Unlimited. There’s no reason to turn Mr. Terrific into an idiot to make Green Arrow look better.

I’d like to think Michael Holt deserves better than the SAD adaptation he’s received on Arrow. When I look at the character presented on the CW’s Arrow and compare him to how he’s depicted in the comics, the comic book version blows the doors off his television counterpart.

In the right hands Mr. Terrific could be presented as badass as Black Panther was in Captain America: Civil War. But because there’s no Fair Play at Berlanti Productions and Warner Brothers, one of DC’s best Black superheroes looks anything but Terrific onscreen.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Shawn FINALLY Reviews Netflix’s Luke Cage

For over a year people have been asking me to review Netflix’s Luke Cage. Unfortunately due to my limited resources and long-term unemployment I wasn’t able to review the show when it originally debuted However, thanks to the help of a family member with a Netflix account I was finally able to take a look at the series. And I have to say it’s the best adaptation of a Black superhero to ever grace any form of media.

Unlike other Marvel Studios’ projects, Netflix’s Luke Cage is not an attempt to directly translate a comic book. It’s an adaptation that re-imagines Luke Cage and his supporting cast for the 21st Century. So viewers shouldn’t expect Luke Cage to follow the letter of the original concept or the original 1970s Blaxploitation era premise. However, it does capture the spirit of Marvel’s inner-city hero and his mission as he starts his adventures in the all-new, all-different world of the Marvel Cinematic universe.

What makes Netflix’s Luke Cage unique isn’t that it’s just a re-imagining of Luke Cage, but who is doing the re-imagining. The Luke Cage of this adaptation isn’t being written and designed by White men like his 1970s comic book counterpart. No, this Luke Cage has been written and designed by Black men for Black audiences. And because we are getting the story of a Black man from Black men at a Black production company it completely changes the narrative and the perception of the character.

From the Black male perspective we’re given a thorough more comprehensive story of Carl Lucas than we would have ever gotten in any of the Marvel comic books. On Netflix’s show, Carl Lucas is a richer more multidimensional character. A former police officer from Georgia who has been framed for a crime he didn’t commit, he’s an Inivisible Man looking for a place in the world where he can’t be seen. After getting powers as a result of an experiment gone wrong at Seagate Prison, the quiet soft-spoken man is looking to rebuild his life and move forward. Working two jobs, one at Pop’s Barbershop in the daytime and at Harlem’s Paradise as a dishwasher at night, he’s just looking to get his bills paid. He’s the Invisible Man watching a situation erupt as Corrupt City Councilwoman Mariah Dillard and her gangsta cousin Cornell “Cottonmouth” Stokes plan to make money off its people by exploiting the community. When a deal to sell weapons leads to things getting hot on the streets, the humble Cage becomes a reluctant hero who comes out of the shadows to protect the innocents caught up in an effort to protect his community from those who would exploit it.

 In this adaptation he’s not a hero for hire. But a Black man looking to do the work Black men do every day to support and protect their families and communities from the predators who plague it. What makes this Luke Cage different from his comic book counterpart is the foundation of his core values. This Luke Cage is a decent, working class man out to maintain his intangibles of manhood such as his dignity, his self-respect and his self worth. He is a man of conscientiousness and character, what makes him a hero is who he is on the inside, not the powers he has.  He’s a good man trying to make the best of a bad situation and doing his best to do the right thing in a world where everyone is out to do wrong.

Netflix’s story of Luke Cage isn’t just a story of a superhero but a story of Black men and Black manhood. That’s one of the things I liked most about this series how it made a focus on the role of Black men in the community as leaders and protectors. It’s a story that rarely gets told because there are very few Black men left in the community to tell it and tell it from their perspective.

Moreover, the series makes an effort to present the traditions and culture Black men used to pass down to one another. Not only did the producers focus on places like the barbershop, the basketball courts and other places Black men gathered and congregate, but they presented the history of these places and why they were important to the development of Black manhood and Black masculinity. It’s in these places that Carl Lucas is taught what he needs to be the man and the hero he becomes by the men in the community.

From what I’ve seen so far, there’s a lot I like about Netflix’s Luke Cage. It’s a contemporary reimagining, an adaptation that’s true to the spirit of the character, and a positive portrayal of Black men that presents a balanced picture of the Black. Moreover, it also presents who the real enemies of the modern day Black community are, Black democratic politicians and street hustlers who pretend to be the friends of all those in the community. The producers of this show clearly did their research on Black history and Black culture, weaving those elements seamlessly into this comic book adaptation.

It’s that fusion of Black culture, Black history and Black tradition that make Netflix’s Luke Cage a unique program. I understand why everyone loves this show and why it practically crashed the Netflix servers. This show is almost like the second coming of The Cosby Show back in 1984. After an over two decade long drought, we finally get a program made with black characters by Black people that presents a balanced picture of Black life onscreen. I’m hoping that the success of Luke Cage leads to a resurgence of positive Black media in America. As I see it, the whole landscape needs to change from all the buffoonery we’ve seen over the last decade and a half from minstrels like Tyler Perry, Shondra Rhimes, and Lee Daniels.

I also liked seeing all the beautiful sistas that are in Cage as well. The women of Cage are sexy, strong and intelligent, and we see a SPECTRUM of beauty from women of all skintones, from light skinned women like Reva Connors to dark skinned sistas like Misty Knight and the chocolate sista chasing after Luke in the barbershop. Black is beautiful and it put a smile on my face to see all those sexy sistas presented right at the side of Cage in this adaptation!

That being said, there’s a couple of things I don’t like about Netflix’s Luke Cage. I hate the fact that just as I’m getting to know a character they wind up dead on this show. And I hate all the gory deaths. But I understand that the producers of cage have a reason for all this By making us CARE about the characters they’re showing us the value of Black life by showing us how careless the bad guys are regarding taking other Black lives. It seems like Luke is the only one who really appreciates human life and the value of it, but maybe that’s because he’s seen so many people he care about lose their lives to those who didn’t care about the lives of others.

Production on Netflix’s Luke Cage is top notch, right on par with any of the Marvel Studios films. I know the filmmakers wanted to capture a 1970s vibe with their camera work but cinematically, the visuals in Luke Cage capture the energy and spirit of life in Harlem in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Every time I watched an episode of Luke Cage it made me reminisce about the times my father would take me to Tommie’s Barber Shop on Fredrick Douglass Boulevard for haircuts. Back then in that era before crack cocaine, there was still a semblance of community in the Black community, and while Black people were poor they still had pride in themselves.  

Netflix’s Luke Cage isn’t “Too Black,” the big problem is that most people haven’t seen a balanced picture of Black life in media in over twenty years. Back in the 1980s when Black men like Spike Lee, Robert Townsend and Bill Cosby had the money, we got balanced and different pictures like this all the time. But after the OJ Simpson trial all we’ve gotten in Black media from Black producers like Oprah Winfrey, Shondra Rhimes, Lee Daniels and Tyler Perry is a slanted picture of Black life from Black feminists featuring stories of dark skinned Black Brutes abusing Black women, light skinned saviors, Black people as perpetual victims and Black women lusting after White Men. Netflix’s Luke Cage rebalances the picture and changes the narrative. We need more stories like this from Black production companies and we need them ASAP.

I’ve been loving the acting on this show, it’s some of the best I’ve seen in a Marvel Studios production. Mike Cotler dominates the screen as Luke Cage. His soft spoken performance captures the voice of the character in the comic. He gives Cage a richness and multidimensionality that go beyond anything ever presented in the newsprint of a Marvel comic. Simone Missick steals every scene she’s in as Misty Knight. Her portrayal takes the character to another level Mareshela Ali is intense as Leon “Cottonmouth” Stokes, smoldering in every scene he’s in. Frankie Faison is amazing as “Pop” Alfre Woodard is powerful as Mariah Dillard. Thanks to the acting, every episode feels like a big-budget epic movie.

Watching the work of this Black-owned prodco, I wish I had the money to hire them for an adaptation of The Temptation for John Haynes, I know they’d do an amazing job adapting that novel and bringing it to life onscreen. I could easily see this prodco making that movie and directing stars like Keith David in the role of Lucifer, Salli Richardson-Whitfield as E’steem and Michael Ealy as John Haynes. I know everyone’s old now, but that was my dreamcast for that book about 12 years ago when I wrote it.

I highly recommend everyone go out and see Netflix’s Luke Cage. It’s a GREAT series that reinvents the Black superhero for the 21st Century and takes a character that was made to be a stereotype and reinvents him into a balanced, positive portrayal of a Black man and a role model for Black men. If you’re a Black person you’re gonna feel a sense of pride watching this series. Watch this show then watch it again. It’s that GREAT!

Tuesday, February 21, 2017


Spinsterella fans, Matilda Crowley’s story isn’t finished yet. While Spellbound chronicled Matilda’s Baby Bat years and Spinsterella told the story of her today as an Elder Goth, there’s still one story that hasn’t been told: That of Matilda in her Goth Prime.

The Legend of Mad Matilda will be the book that bridges the gap between Spinsterella and Spellbound. Set in 1995, it’ll chronicle Matilda’s transitioning from Mad Matilda the Queen of the Industrial Goth Raves to the early days of her career in The Pit working at Amalgamated Consolidated. Five years into her journey into the Goth subculture, the Columbia University senior will be out of her baby bat phase and flying high as Mad Matilda, Ivy League College student by day and aspiring event coordinator on the weekends.

The Legend of Mad Matilda will fill most of the blanks left between Spellbound and Spinsterella. In this story I’ll detail the reasons why Mad Matilda the left the Industrial/Rave scene of the Goth subculture and why she became a part of Corporate America. 

The Legend of Mad Matilda will be one of the darkest books in the Spinsterella trilogy, sort of like The Empire Strikes Back of the series. In this story we’ll see Matilda’s journey from a young adult to a woman starting to take charge of her life. There’s going to be a lot of loss and tragedy in this one, and it’ll take legendary courage for Mattie to get through the hardest year of her life as she deals with her struggles with bosses, family, and friends while she tries to maintain her Goth identity as she navigates a life out of the Industrial club scene into the corporate world.

As people grow older In the Goth subculture their identity changes. And the Goth they were at 16 is not who they are at 21. And who they are at 40 is not who they were at 16 or 21. This is why Matilda has three different Goth personas related to the three phases of Goth: The Black Widow, Mad Matilda, and Spinsterella.

The Black widow is the foundation of her identity as a BabyBat. Mad Matilda is the adolescent/young adult trying to figure out her place in the world and Spinsterella is the mature woman who is ready to teach and mentor to young women in the Goth subculture and be a wife to her future husband.

The narration I’m planning for Legend of Mad Matilda is two voices, Mattie’s and Matilda’s mother Muriel to contrast hers. In Spellbound readers saw Matilda’s Dad Jason express his concerns about his daughter becoming a Goth in the narration. However, in Legend, readers will see Muriel’s worries about Matilda’s future as an adult in the workplace.

In this story we’ll start to understand Muriel’s motivations for staying on those extra years at Amalgamated Consolidated. The retiring Muriel wants to teach Mattie what she’s learned about corporate America and show her how to navigate the world of White Men in corporate America and maintaining her dignity in the face of these corporate sexual predators. In Legend readers will learn why Matilda is known as the Black Widow and the Iron Maiden at Amalgamated Consolidated, and it all relates to her efforts to preserve her chastity in the face of many sexually promiscuous male co-workers.

The Legend of Mad Matilda will be about a mother passing down her history, legacy, and culture to her daughter. As her mother Muriel works towards trying to teach Mattie what she needs to survive in the business world, and Mattie making efforts to start teaching younger girls about the Goth subculture. Both women are doing their best to maintain their high moral position as they try to share their knowledge and navigate the changes in their lives.

With the success of Spellbound last year, I’m fast tracking Legend of Mad Matilda for publication. I’m currently working on the first draft and while I can’t say it’ll be coming this year it’ll be coming sooner than later. in the meantime get caught up on Matilda’s story in Spinsterella and Spellbound in paperback and e-readers today!

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

I’m DONE with The CW’S Riverdale

I was committed to watching the full season of the CW’s Riverdale. However after watching the third episode featuring Chuck Clayton I’m done with this series.

My beef with Riverdale isn’t just the total maligning of Chuck Clayton’s character. It’s the fact that the episode featuring Chuck Clayton is one of the most racist things I have seen in the last 25 years on Television. 

When I think about Chuck’s actions in a historical context it shows how completely out of touch the writers of CW’s Riverdale truly are. On that episode Chuck Clayton brags online about giving White girls “Sticky Maples”, saying he had sex with them when he didn’t. Only a writer and a producer who was either braindead or retarded regarding race relations in America would think a Black man lying about giving White girls “Sticky Maples would be a good idea to present onscreen, especially in this tense period where White Supremacist bigots have been polarized and emboldened by politicians like President Donald Trump.

What makes this episode really racist is how completely clueless the writers and producers of Riverdale are regarding the Black family and Black culture in America. No matter how diverse the producers want to make their version of Riverdale to appear on the surface with their Black Pop Tate, Black Mr. Weatherbee, and Black Josie and the PussyCats, they showed how little they understood Black history and Black culture in that episode of Riverdale featuring Chuck Clayton.

If the clueless writers at Berlanti productions understood Black culture and Black history, they’d understand that an older man like Coach Clayton who grew up in that predominantly White town during the 1960s and 1970s would have definitely sat down with his son and taught him about racism. And he would have taught him to watch himself when interacting with White people, especially White girls. And he would have explained to him how numerous Black men like Emmitt Till were lynched due to the false accusations of White Women like Carolyn Bryant.

To show a Black man on a TV show lying about having sex with White girls and saying he was giving them “Sticky Maples” was the height of insensitive especially when you think about 14-year-old Emmitt Till who was tortured, castrated, and murdered in real life based on the false accusations of a White woman. And to this day Black men can have their lives put in jeopardy based on the accusations of a White woman.

 So why would any Black man knowing the history of AmeriKKKa be STUPID enough to put his own life at risk by lying about giving White Women “Sticky Maples?”

Waiting for someone at Berlanti Productions to answer that question.

The whole idea of Chuck Clayton being presented as some sort of Black Brute was out of character. And the reason why Berlanti Productions, Riverdale’s Producers changed Chuck’s character wasn’t about cyber bullying, but pushing a covert agenda against Black men. In some way these writers and producers wanted to take a jab at Bill Cosby for the alleged sexual assaults of all those White Women. 50 years ago and sought to use Chuck Clayton as a Cipher to have Betty and Veronica exact their revenge against Mr. Cosby.

I’m sorry, I don’t watch comic book adaptations like Riverdale to see producers push a political agenda. Nor do I want to see them taking jabs at celebrities they don’t like. I was eager to see Chuck Clayton the friendly artist depicted the same way Archie, Jughead, Betty, Veronica, Reggie and Josie were depicted on this show. Instead all I got shown was a Black Brute lusting after White Women and projecting his sexual fantasies about giving them “Sticky Maples” online.

Damn. Just Damn.

If only Greg Berlanti and the Producers of Riverdale knew Black men like myself don’t sweat White women that hard in real life. In spite what many White men believe, most Black men could give less than two fucks about getting attention from a White woman. For most of us pussy is just pussy and we’ll get with whoever offers it to us regardless of race.

Since the writers and producers of Riverdale want to turn the show into a soapbox for their racist agenda, I’m gonna find something else to do on Thursday nights at 9. As a comic fan, I want an adaptation that makes efforts to stay true to the source material, not one that perpetuates the producers’ racist ideas about Black men. From what I saw in the first two episodes Riverdale was going to be must see TV for me. Unfortunately after seeing how Chuck Clayton was depicted on February 9th I’m just going to stop watching Riverdale altogether. 

Greg Berlanti, you just lost one viewer for Riverdale. And I’m about to walk away from your other programs such as Arrow, The Flash and Supergirl due to the negative and stereotypical way you present Black men onscreen. Every person of almost every race can be seen in a positive light on a Berlanti Production except for a Black man. I don’t know what your issue is with Black men, but you need to get help with that before it costs you more of your audience.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Racism on the CW’s Riverdale

It’s interesting how Berlanti Productions finds new and creative ways to emasculate and humiliate Black men on their shows. On last night’s Riverdale, it seemed like someone was expressing their anger regarding what Bill Cosby was alleged to have done to all those women over 50 years ago.

On last night’s Riverdale Chuck Clayton was portrayed completely out of character. And instead of being the friendly artist portrayed in the comics he became a cipher for Bill Cosby. After going out on a date with Veronica Lodge Chuck goes around spreading rumors on social media about giving Sticky Maples to Veronica Lodge and whole host of White women in Riverdale.

And instead of watching him get emasculated over a season like James Olson, he’s SO LAME he’s just lying on his dick.

Damn. Just Damn.

I can see Reggie doing shit like this, but since he’s Asian on this show I guess Berlanti doesn’t thinks Asian men have a dick big enough to lie on like Chuck does. Don’t you just love the covert racism in this allegedly diverse series?

It seems like Berlanti is all for diversity. On the surface. Yeah, Pop Tate and Mr. Weatherbee, Josie, and the Mayor of Riverdale are Black in his adaptation of Archie Comics characters, but the one black character who is core to the Archiverse is portrayed completely out of character all because someone seems to be holding a grudge against Bill Cosby.


The way Chuck Clayton was portrayed on February 9th’s episode of Riverdale was a passive aggressive way of taking a jab at Bill Cosby for those alleged rapes of White women and emasculating the Black man yet again. Saying he’s handsome enough to get White women like Veronica Lodge, but didn’t have enough balls to close the deal with them.

Fuck You Berlanti. FUCK YOU.

Then there was the way the Black Scout was portrayed. The one Black male in Dilton’s scout troop is portrayed as a COWARD.

Again, FUCK YOU Berlanti. FUCK YOU.

I’m noticing a double standard on these CW comic adaptaions: It’s okay for White men like Steel & Barry Allen to have interracial relationships with Vixen and Iris West, however, when it comes to Black men like James Olsen and Chuck Clayton pursuing relationships with White women like Supergirl it’s considered wrong.

And when I look at the way Chuck Clatyon was portrayed on Riverdale, the double standard turns into racism. Chuck has gone from the friendly artist into an emasculated Black Brute wannabe who thinks about savaging White women, but doesn’t have the balls to go face to face with them after being called out for saying he put sticky maple from his wood on their faces.

Damn. Just Got Damn.

Riverdale was going well until this episode. This one story pretty much put a stain on what was a promising series. While it’s in character for Reggie Mantle to pull shit like this, it’s COMPLETELY OUT OF CHARACTER FOR CHUCK.

Yeah, Chuck is the coach’s son. But Chuck was never portrayed like this in the comics. And it seems like this episode wasn’t about staying true to the spirit of the characters, but about Berlanti Productions continuing to push a misandristic agenda to tarnish the image of Black men. Chuck Clayton was a cipher for Bill Cosby and the producers’ perception of what they believe he did to all those White women years ago.

As a writer with 20 plus years under my belt I’ve got some advice for Greg Berlanti and his writers: Keep it professional. Keep your personal biases about celebrities like Bill Cosby out of your shows and stay true to your characters. With Riverdale, Arrow, The Flash, Supergirl and Legends of Tomorrow you’re paid to write and produce an adaptation of DC and Archie Comics, not use characters as ciphers to express your opinions on celebrities like Bill Cosby and allegations about sexual assaults that were alleged to have happened 50 years ago. That’s the height of unprofessionalism.

You want to do an episode about cyber bullying do an episode about Cyber bullying. Stay true to the characters. Stay true to the story model. In the Archieverse Reggie doing shit like this we can believe. But Chuck? HELL NO.

Yeah, I know Riverdale is an adaptation of Archie Comics and its characters. But the episode of Riverdale aired on February 9, 2017 was completely unprofessional and in poor taste. Everything from Chuck lying on his dick to Betty giving Chuck muscle relaxers to the BDSM undertones was completely out of character for the image of Archie Comics and their characters. If Archie’s editorial bosses don’t call you out for that episode, then they shouldn’t be in their jobs. That episode aired on February 9, 2017 completely betrayed mission of Archie’s characters and compromised the integrity of the Archie Comics brand.

Plain and simple Berlanti dropped the ball with the handling of Chuck Clayton. And he showed how racist he and his production company is to characters of color. In one episode of Riverdale he completely emasculates Chuck Clayton by having Betty and Veronica sadistically humiliate him in a hot tub. Yeah, the character lied on his dick. But the BDSM undertones in his emasculation show the real place where Berlanti and his writers want Black men to be in their fantasy series.

At the bottom of the world under the feet of White women.

In between turning a badass like Mr. Terrific into a BITCH, making James Olsen into the Guardian of the Friendzone, killing Julio Mendez, and making Chuck Clayton into a douchenozzle, he clearly shows his contempt for Black men in every one of his shows. I could excuse one Black character being mishandled. But after last night’s episode of Riverdale I’m clearly noticing a pattern with all these Black male characters on Berlanti Productions programs. They’re either there to be humble servants like John Diggle on Arrow, or they’re just portrayed to be the butt of a cruel joke like James Olsen, Mr. Terrific and Chuck Clayton. Breathing new life into old stereotypes from 1937 in 2017.

The more these Berlanti shows remain on the air, the more I appreciate Netflix’s Luke Cage. It seems that’s the only show where we can see a Black man presented in a positive humanized light and in a dignified respectable way. Some call Luke Cage too Black, but after seeing the way Chuck Clayton was portrayed on Riverdale, I understand why we need Black people behind the scenes adapting our characters for the screen.

Friday, February 3, 2017


Last week And Archie Comics was just the latest comic book company to pass DC Comics by in the TV and Cinematic adaptation lane with their Amazing Riverdale series. At the rate DC Comics is going my SJS DIRECT publishing imprint will be passing them by in a couple of years.

DC Comics is supposed to be the Number two Comic book publisher in the world. But in the world of film and television and film adaptations they are in last place. With poor quality films like Man of Steel, Batman V. Superman and inconsistent TV shows like Arrow, Supergirl, and The Flash it’s looking more and more like Warner Brothers is out of its league when it comes to adapting DC Comics properties. 

Seriously, what’s so hard about adapting DC’s Superheroes for the 21st Century? These are the world’s greatest super-heroes. Icons like Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman. Many amateurs can produce films like Batman: Dead End that stay true to the spirit of the characters. And many more free-lance screenwriters like myself would love to adapt DC’s heroes so that kids of the 21st Century can see what’s great about them. So why can’t Warner Brothers with its billons of dollars, and some of the most talented and creative people on it’s billion dollar payroll get their heads out of their collective asses and create superhero movies and TV shows that can compete with Marvel Studios?

It’s clear there are people who can do this currently working at Warner Brothers. Bruce Timm can make cartoons that stay true to the spirit of DC’s characters. And Greg Berlanti on a good day can make episodes of his shows like Arrow, Flash and Supergirl that are just like comic books come to life. So why can’t they get their shit together and make quality product on a regular basis?

It’s a real shame when you consider that Warner Brothers reinvented the superhero genre with Superman: The Movie in 1978. And reinvented it again with Batman in 1989. But in the 21st Century they haven’t been able to get things into gear after The Dark Knight Trilogy. With all the talent and resources Warner Brothers has this should be a HORSE RACE between the Big two for the moviegoers’ dollars and TV Viewers’ attention. But thanks to years of incompetent leadership Fifth place Archie Comics is now starting to pull ahead of the Number Two comic book publisher in the world when it comes to a quality adaptation of their characters.

Embarrassing. Just Embarrassing. 

I have to wonder what’s wrong at DC? Why can’t they get it into gear? They have the best catalog of superhero characters. They have the budget and the resources. They can clearly pay the best actors, producers and directors. But when it comes down to the final product it’s just SHIT ON A PLATE.

Damn. Just Damn.

With the way things are going regarding DC Comics superhero properties on film and television they’re going to be in last place and remain there because their management is out of touch, and completely disconnected from its customer base and what it wants.

I know I could make a better adaptation of my own characters than DC and Warner Brothers are doing right now. And maybe seeing SJS DIRECT pass DC by will be the wake-up call Warner Brothers needs to get its shit together in DC Comics Television, film and publishing divisions. Because the way they’re performing right now is EMBARASSING.

 There needs to be a Housecleaning at Warner Brothers and DC’s publishing, film and TV divisions. And it needs to happen NOW.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Isis: Escape From Transylvania Sample Chapter

I’ve been getting a lot requests on social media to present a sample chapter of  Isis: Escape From Transylvania. Isis: Escape from Transylvania is a follow up to Isis: Nightof the Vampires and Isis: Bride of Dracula, and it’s the event story that’ll celebrate the fifth year of the Isis series being in print.  

Remember, This is still a first draft so a LOT could change in between now and the publication date!

Chapter 1

I could break the Internet. But the only person stopping me from doing that is my father.
I look at the view count under last month’s stream of Vampire Hunters on the screen of my tablet. We had so many users streaming that episode it almost crashed our servers. I know a rematch between Isis, Dad, and John Haynes would have hundreds of millions of viewers all over the world tuning into their laptops, TVs and Smartphones. 
Unfortunately, Dad hasn’t been in shape for stalking any prey since their first encounter. He’s been so upset about the beating John gave him all he does now is sit in his study and watch old movies. I’ve got to get him back in the game. Maybe if he saw the numbers for last month’s show he’d feel like hunting again.
 I spring up out of my office chair and dart out of my office. As I rush down the hall of our gothic mansion I see a light on under the mahogany double doors of my father’s study. I push past the creaky door and where I find my father sitting in front of the big screen TV in front of the fireplace in his oxblood nailhead chair sipping on a Type O with lime. On seeing me, the chalk colored man dressed in a silk smoking jacket and pajamas meets my smile with a somber expression. “What’s going on Lucretia?” Dad inquires.
“I wanted to show you the ratings for last month’s livestream.” I say handing him my tablet.
Glancing at the numbers, my father smiles for the first time in a month. “Two hundred million views.” He says. “Looks like we went viral again.”
“Viral?” I say. “We came this close to crashing our servers! We could break the Internet if you hunted John again!”
It doesn’t seem like Dad shares my excitement. The smile on his face twists into a frown. “If I hunted John again, he may break me.”
“Since when have you been afraid of a mortal?”
Dad’s eyes grow wide on the question. “Since he threatened to kill me.” 
“So? Van Helsing threatened to kill you-”
“Not like this man.” Dad says shaking his head. “I know he would keep his word if I engaged him again.”
“I think you could take him-”
 “You do not know this man Lucretia. He is like a force far greater than anything I have ever faced in my lifetime.”
“He’s just a man-”
“Is he?” Father says. “Many greater than I have fallen at his feet.”
I just think he had a lot of lucky breaks against all those other creatures of the night. If Dad hunted him again I know he wouldn’t lose. “He can’t be that powerful-”
 “John Haynes has broken demons, bested gods, and crushed despots. I would be a fool to engage him again.”
“But you could make billions on the rematch-”
“And if I lost I would lose more than my face.”
“Are you that afraid for your life?”
“He left me with my dignity. I’ll be content with that.”
What kind of man is this that he could put the fear of God in my father? “So you’d be content with walking away from what could possibly be the biggest payday in Horror Show’s history?” 
“I can take the loss. But I won’t take John’s kindness for weakness.”
“That’s not the way you taught me to do business-”
“It’s the way we to do business now.”
“But this would be good for the network-”
“It would be good for the network, but it wouldn’t be good for our business-”
If I put on this show on everyone at work will stop seeing me as Daddy’s little ghoul and start taking me seriously. “But this is good for my business-”
 “Honey, there are some things worth more than money.” Dad says taking my hand. “And I don’t want to put them at risk.”
“I guess there are.” I spit.
I catch the resigned look on my father’s face and realize I’m not going to convince him. “If you want me to hunt anyone else for your next show, I’m game. But I will have no dealings with this man.”
 My eyes fall into the Persian rug on hearing him say no. “I guess I’ll book something else for next week’s show.”
“I’m sure you’ll find someone who will be a really strong draw.” Dad comforts patting my arm. “Maybe that Justin Bieber? Everyone would want to see me take a bite out of him.”
They’d rather see him choke the life out of John Haynes. I shuffle out of my father’s study. He may not be interested in participating in next month’s episode, but there has to be a way for me to get this show to go on. 

I would LOVE to have Bill Walko design the cover for this one! So if you could drop a donation to the Paypal link, to help me pay for the cover it’d be greatly appreciated. I really want to release this one in October to celebrate the fifth Anniversary of the Isis series in style!