Superheroes need to unionize. Imagine if Batman, tired of living that vigilante lifestyle, joined up with his fellow superheroes in order to earn a living wage while fighting for justice. That’s the premise behind the new creator-owned Image Comics series C.O.W.L. The title stands for “Chicago Organized Workers’ League,” and in this ’60s-set story, tired superheroes who banded together as C.O.W.L. are facing an uncertain future. It’s a fresh reimagining of superheroes who feel far more realistic than men in tights. Flavorwire emailed with C.O.W.L. co-writer Kyle Higgins, who’s expanding the world of his original short film, “The League.” Read ahead for Higgins’ insight and exclusive images from C.O.W.L. #2, available on Wednesday, June 25. … Read More
California-based graphic designer Khoa Ho examines the origin stories of some of pop culture’s most celebrated superheroes in the series Superheroes – Past/Present (spotted via My Modern Met). These stark illustrations, featuring heroes ranging from Spider-Man to Batman, are the appropriate images for this post-Christopher Nolan world, wherein the heroes’ psyches are perhaps more important than the gadgets they employ or the villains they fight. Check out the gallery after the jump. … Read More
Today is Free Comic Book Day, which promises exactly what it advertises: you get a free comic book just for showing up at your local shop. The offerings have been specially selected, but nothing is preventing you from browsing while you’re there and spending a few dollars to support an oft-overlooked art form that has brought joy to many. To celebrate the occasion, and with a new Mad Men episode approaching, we wanted to combine two of our favorite things: 1960’s ad execs crippled by existential angst, and awesome comic book heroes and villains. The resemblance is greater than you think. See our pairings, and leave your own suggestions, below. … Read More
In Alex Law’s awesome new project/Tumblr, Little Girls Are Better at Designing Superheroes Than You, which we spotted over at The Rumpus, the undergrad biology student/artist (!) takes pictures of little girls dressed up like superheroes and turns them into awesome drawings. Law writes: “Kids are more impressionable than you, but kids can also be less restricted by cultural gender norms than you. Kids are more creative than you, and they’re better at making superheroes than you.” Fair enough. Check out some kick-ass little girls and their superheroine counterparts after the jump, and then head here to see more of Law’s work. … Read More
How can you improve a movie as perfect as The Godfather? With superheroes, of course. Well, OK — perhaps Francis Ford Coppola’s masterpiece wouldn’t benefit from being relocated to the comic-book universe, but the notion certainly adds some levity to the poster. In a well-executed series of minimalist reimaginings, Brazil-based designer Luiz Arthuso has inserted beloved superheroes into a selection of appropriate movies. See what might happen if Superman starred in Back to the Future, or Wolverine in Kill Bill after the jump. … Read More
Henri Langlois, co-founder of the Cinémathèque Française, once said of Louis Feuillade’s 1915 silent crime serial, “I am convinced that surrealism preexisted in cinema. Feuillade’s Les vampires was already an expression of the 20th century and of the universal subconscious.” The ten-part, subversive serial runs a whopping eight hours, but it’s easy to lose track of the time when you’re following the exploits of a vampy Parisian gang — including proto-goth starlet Musidora as the infamous Irma Vep.
It’s great to see companies like Kino International bringing old-timey serials like Les vampires to Blu-ray, keeping the low-budget, action-packed chapter plays alive. These early movies are where many film tropes and characters evolved — including several of the superheroes audiences go crazy for, today — and where moviegoers grew to love (and sometimes hate) them. Click through to watch several entertaining serials that are online right now (follow the video links for other parts in the series), and school yourself on an essential chapter in cinema history. … Read More