Tuesday night has become quite the evening for comic book fans. With Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. rolling at a much faster pace these days and building to a major MCU reveal, and The Flash building the TV DC Comics Universe faster even than its sister series Arrow, Tuesday is becoming new comic book day almost as much as Wednesday for fans.
Last night didn’t fail to bring in copious mythology and major moments in either show, with crossovers, returning characters, and a few key words that revved fans (and our own) speculation engines. SPOILERS AHOY
On Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., the Inhumans hints keep on coming. The episode had several developments, including Mack being somehow infected by something in the mystery city, seemingly enhancing his strength and durability, but also driving him mad. It looked like the new Season 2 addition may have died at the end, but with that enhanced durability, maybe not just yet.
Meanwhile, Raina came back into the picture and gave Skye a nice big exposition dump. She made a couple of statements in particular that caught the ears of those waiting to hear the word “Inhumans.” Raina told Skye that the two women are not aliens, but “humans with the potential to be something more.” She told her that potential comes from the Kree - using the word on the show directly for the first time. She told her that she’ll be able to touch the Diviner. Yeah, it was a big conversation.
Skye and Raina went with Ward to join Hydra in their quest for the city (and the power within - more on that in a minute) and despite Ward’s best efforts to spare the S.H.I.E.L.D. team, they were left in peril after a Hydra kill order in the closing minutes.
So, with the (temporary?) transformative power of the city revealed, the new cover from Marvel Comics featuring Inhumans and the alien writing from the show, and the direct wording of the Kree and “humans with potential,” it’s all but a lock that we’ve been right in our speculation for the last several weeks. All we need is the word “Inhuman” to be uttered, and there’s one more episode before a three month hiatus to do that. Of course, what Hydra doesn’t realize is that the power in the temple in the city (under the island in the ocean on the world in the… okay, we’ll stop) is most likely Terrigen Crystals or even just straight up Terrigen Mists, meaning it’ll only truly work on those with that nice Inhuman genetic code. It should make for one crazy mid-season finale on December 9. After that, Agent Carter debuts on January 6, 2015 with a two-hour premiere kicking off the eight-hour “television event.” Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. returns after that, in March, with a steady stream of twelve new episodes.
Over on The Flash we had the first part of the Flash/Arrow crossover, this one bringing Arrow and his team to Central City for the classic opening act of a team-up: the fight. Yes, Arrow showed Flash just how nascent of a hero he is, trying to help train him and give him some tactical advice that should come in handy in the near future (especially as his future/past is due to haunt him in the mid-season finale). While the training sequence, the butting of heads between teams, and that crazy fight were fun, they weren’t the big mythology building moments we mentioned. And while Dig going into shock upon seeing Barry in action was funny, we don’t mean that, either.
First off was the villain: the Rainbow Raider. Yes, it’s a goofy sounding name; the in-story reason was that Caitlin came up with it. However, what they did with the character, who can affect others’ emotions, was a major moment for DC Comics fans: they introduced the emotional spectrum.
Flash EP and DC Entertainment CCO Geoff Johns took the idea of the willful Green Lanterns and the fearful Yellow ring bearers a few years back in the comics, and expanded it, placing them on the “emotional spectrum.” Within that context, each color of ring affected, and was controlled by, another emotion. Red: Rage, Orange: Avarice, Yellow: Fear, Green: Will, Blue: Hope, Indigo: Compassion, Violet: Love.
During the episode, Rainbow Raider used red glowing eyes to induce Rage within people - including Barry Allen - and cause them to rampage. The cure for Barry? Flashing high-intensity Blue, Indigo, and Violet lights at him. The S.T.A.R. Labs scientists even used words like “emotion” and “spectrum” when talking about it. Does this mean Green Lanterns and Blue Lanterns and Yarfleeze the Orange Lantern who looks like a psychotic Alf are going to be showing up this season? No, no it does not. Still, coupled with the mentions of Ferris Air, it could be planting the seeds for a Green Lantern to show up eventually in the DCTVU, and makes for a fun easter egg regardless.
We also got an Eddie Thawne who now has good reason to hate The Flash, perhaps setting up for some future ancestor to come back in time to mess with our hero? It seemed to both take away and offer up a new candidate for the Reverse Flash - who we’ll meet next week in the mid-season finale.
Lastly, there was Oliver’s reaction to chatting with Dr. Harrison Wells. While the mystery of Dr. Wells can and probably will fill an entire other story for us, Oliver saying he was unsettled by the good doctor certainly falls in line with the many possibilities for who this Flash-obsessed guy with knowledge of the future is. He is unsettling indeed, Ollie.
Oh yeah, we had Barry call Oliver by his much more common comic book nickname Ollie. That was cool too. Part two of their team-up runs tonight, focusing on (Captain) Boomerang, whose weapon was a focus of the B Story in The Flash.
As the coda to the episode, Ronnie Raymond was seen living on the streets. When two men accosted him, he lit his hands and head on fire spontaneously, revealing our first look at Firestorm.
Deathstroke To Strike Back in ARROW
From first looks to returns, MTV is reporting that the original villain of the CW’s Arrow is returning to the show this season. Slade Wilson, played by Manu Bennett, was last seen incarcerated in an A.R.G.U.S. prison facility on the island of Lian Yu thanks in no small part to Oliver Queen, but it sounds as if Slade’s promises then to escape might be coming true. MTV says that Slade will return to the show for the current season’s 14th episode, which will air sometime in early 2015.
FANTASTIC FOUR Official Synopsis Gets Discovered
While it’s a few weeks old by now and doesn’t tells us much we didn’t already know, the official new(ish) brief description of 20th Century Fox and Josh Trank’s 2015 Fantastic Four reboot is getting attention having been discovered on Rotten Tomatoes . And here it is.
“THE FANTASTIC FOUR, a contemporary re-imagining of Marvel's original and longest-running superhero team, centers on four young outsiders who teleport to an alternate and dangerous universe, which alters their physical form in shocking ways. Their lives irrevocably upended, the team must learn to harness their daunting new abilities and work together to save Earth from a former friend turned enemy.”
Now the first trailer/first official images watch continues.
Check Out RETRO GIRL(s)
Speaking of official images, EW has a few new ones from the PlayStation Powers series based on Brian Bendis and Mike Oeming’s now-ICON series Powers.
Most intriguing is genre vet-fan favorite Michelle Forbes as the original Retro Girl all suited up (above). There are also new images of Eddie Izzard as Wolfe and Oleysa Rulin as Calista Secor, otherwise known as the second Retro Girl.
Head on over to EW for the full gallery.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt Updates SANDMAN Production
An adaptation of the Vertigo comic series Sandman has been discussed for decades, but it looks like the new effort spearheaded by actor/director Joseph Gordon-Levitt is building steam. Earlier this week, the Dark Knight Rises star participated in a Reddit AMA and gave some updates on recent work done for the film.
“Been doing a lot of work with David Goyer and Jack Thorne, working on the screenplay,” said Levitt. “We’ve been doing our meetings at the DC office, which is a frickin rad place to work. Also just had a great conversation last week with David and Mr. Gaiman. Neil has been extremely big hearted with me, and he’s the one I want to please most.”
Sandman co-creator Neil Gaiman is attached to the project an executive producer, with Goyer onboard as a mainline producer and writer. Goyer told Deadline that this is the first time Gaiman has participated on a speculative Sandman movie project, and that they’ve already completed a draft of the screenplay that Warner Bros. is “very happy with.”
iZombie Welcomes Weber
Finally, EW has news that veteran TV actor Steven Weber will be guest starring in the upcoming CW comics-based mid-season replacement drama iZombie. Weber will reportedly play a "charismatic CEO of an energy drink company" says EW, with the actor pencilled infor at least two episodes of the series.
Weber is best known for his co-leading role on NBC's sitcom Wings, but is also a veteran of comics-to-TV adaptations including voicing Norman Osborn/Green Goblin in the current Ultimate Spider-Man animated series.
iZombie is headed up by Veronica Mars creator Rob Thomas and is expected to debut in early 2015.