Tag Archives: Wonder Woman

Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice

After work tomorrow I’ll be nestling into a cushioned seat for almost three hours to watch Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.

Like all nerds, I’ve been waiting a long time to see these two titans of comic-dom appear together on the big screen in live-action. It’s been an excruciating week, as I’ve tried to remain spoiler-free, but I only have one more day to go! If you can’t get out there to see it this weekend or if you don’t like a numb butt, the Library has plenty of Batman and Superman materials for your enjoyment.

Check out the rest of Zack Snyder’s filmography:
Whether you think he’s a visionary or a slightly-less awful version of Michael Bay, we’ve got all of Zack Snyder’s past films, most of them on glorious Blu-ray. While some of his films have been hit or miss for me (I agree with pretty much everything YouTube user Bored Girlfriend said in her review of 300), there’s no denying that Snyder has an eye for great visuals. Even his first film, Dawn of the Dead, had the bones of his signature stylish flair, and although I’m not as big a fan or Superman as I am of Batman, I didn’t hate Man of Steel as vehemently as some—the Smallville fight is great. After Batman v Superman, Snyder has the two-part Justice League lined up and maybe a remake of The Fountainhead. Seriously.

Check out the other films of the actors portraying these characters:
For a man who waxes philosophically about animal crackers and is the brother of SNL’s Stefon, I can understand why the Internet lost its collective mind when Ben Affleck was cast as Batman. But watching Gone Girl soon after the announcement I realized that, besides having incredible biceps, maybe Affleck was a good actor. As far as Superman, Henry Cavil has only been in about a third as many films as Batfleck, but the Library has most of them. He’s especially charming in last year’s The Man from U.N.C.L.E.  Also appearing in Batman v Superman is Wonder Woman, making her big screen debut. Warner Bros. cast the relative unknown Gal Gadot, most known for the increasingly confusingly titled Fast & Furious franchise

Check out the past iterations of Batman and Superman on film:
With Man of Steel and this film, WB is launching the DC Extended Universe, not unlike the gargantuan Marvel Cinematic Universe. While Richard Donner’s Superman films or Christopher Nolan’s Batman films have no ties to the new DCEU, it’s still interesting to go back and look at the cinematic history of these two iconic characters, like when they appeared together in animation in The Batman Superman Movie: World’s Finest. Many of the comic stories have been adapted into standalone animated movies, too. And speaking of comics …

Check out the comics and graphic novels:
BatmanTDKR-frank-miller
Remember comics, the source material for all these superhero movies? We’ve got them in print as well as on Hoopla. While Batman and Superman first met on a cruise ship in 1952 (for real), pay special attention to Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns as Snyder has said he’s drawing inspiration from it for his version of Batman. I realize I’m in the minority, but I never really cared for TDKR. I know, heresy! I have, however, always liked the idea of a grizzled, veteran Batman, so I’m looking forward to seeing that interpreted on screen. Regardless of how you feel about Miller’s involvement with the Caped Crusader—from his Batman: Year One to the meme-birthing All-Star Batman and Robin—there’s no denying the impact TDKR had on modern Batman. It’s not out of the question to speculate that without Frank Miller paving the way for a darker Batman in the ’80s, we’d have never gotten Burton’s Batman.

Check out some supplemental materials:
Did you know a huge inspiration of Superman was the John Carter of Mars stories by Edgar Rice Burroughs? Did you know that Batman was inspired by the 1920 film The Mark of Zorro and characters like Sherlock Holmes and Dick Tracy? The Library has materials on all those subjects and more. Want to find out the secret history of Wonder Woman or what Batman’s and Superman’s views on philosophy are? Have you ever wanted to visit Metropolis (Illinois) and check out the Supermuseum? We’ve got you covered.

You could also keep watching the second trailer for Suicide Squad, the next entry in the DCEU, based on the series of the same name. It premiers August 5.

Did I leave anything out? Are you excited about the film? Let me know in the comments below!

–Ross

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Searching for Truthiness

When it comes to non-fiction, I go through a lot of “Dude, I should really read that” but very minimal execution on said talking to myself. Aside from my Read More Mysteries! goal (see our Reading Resolutions group post coming at the end of the month…), I’m gonna try for a non-fiction book a month. Wish me luck, ’cause the topics I’m interested in usually come in 400-page tomes.

These three should take me through March:

Derek Boogaard played hockey at the professional level for six years before his death in May of 2011. John Branch’s Boy on Ice explores his career, especially what it meant to have been an enforcer in the NHL, and how his posthumous diagnosis of chronic traumatic encephalopathy has changed the league in the seasons since.

bookcoverMy comic book interests run mainly toward the Dark Knight and his crew. Other than some passing trivia about the lasso of truth, I don’t know much about the Amazon warrior princess. I’m hoping to change that with The Secret History of Wonder Woman. Her creator, William Moulton Marston, was a psychologist whose research on emotion and blood pressure was a major contribution to the modern polygraph test — later the inspiration for that lasso of truth.

bookcover fcbFive Came Back : A Story of Hollywood and the Second World War dives into how the wartime experiences of John Ford, George Stevens, John Huston, William Wyler, and Frank Capra affected their careers, and Hollywood as a whole. Huston and Stevens both served with the Army Signal Corps, a unit responsible for making documentary films. Ford and Wyler were with the Navy and Air Force, respectively, also creating documentary pieces. Capra entered the Army as an enlisted man and worked directly under Chief of Staff George C. Marshall to make the seven-part Why We Fight series of films.

– Jess

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Snips and Snails and Puppy Dog Tails

A while ago an article appeared on my Facebook feed that was called 11 Things Only Parents of Boys Understand. This type of article drives me crazy; I never agree with the things on the list and usually find that you could cut out the “boys” part and just call the list “Things That Parents of Children Understand.” But a couple of things on this particular list did jump out at me, in particular the point about how a son will form a definite preference about Marvel vs. DC Comics superheroes (I have no idea how my son, who certainly hasn’t gotten this information from his parents, decided he loves DC Comics and doesn’t care much for Marvel!) In some ways, having a son is such a mystery, and not just in how he forms such strong opinions on superheroes. A few books I’ve turned to are:

Masterminds and Wingmen: Helping Our Boys Cope with Schoolyard Power, Locker-Room Tests, Girlfriends, and the New Rules of Boy World: In this book Rosalind Wiseman, the author of Queen Bees and Wannabes (the basis for the movie Mean Girls) turns to boys. After interviewing 200 boys, Wiseman breaks down the various social challenges teenage boys face.

The Boy Who Loved Batman: A Memoir: The author of this book, Michael E. Uslan, grew up to produce all the Batman feature films. Before that though, he was a kid growing up in 1950’s New Jersey who just really, really liked Batman. As someone who didn’t find comics until I was an adult, and not really the superhero ones, this book is a fascinating look at someone who grew up on superhero comics.

Raising Cain: Protecting the Emotional Life of Boys: As a society, we’re no longer as entrenched in the belief that boys are somehow less emotional creatures than girls, but ideas of masculinity and femininity still influence how we expect boys or girls to react emotionally. This book addresses the stereotypical masculine “ideal” and looks at ways parents can provide their sons with “emotional literacy.”

It’s a Boy! Understanding Your Son’s Development From Birth to Age 18: This is a pretty basic book on child development, but focused solely on boys.

The Secret History of Wonder Woman: Wonder Woman has always been my favorite superhero, and fortunately my son loves her too (not quite as much as Batman, but she’s a close second!). This book explores the recently discovered papers of William Moulton Marsten, the creator of Wonder Woman (and the lie detector test!). Feminism, biography, superheroes…this book has it all!

-Irene

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