Newstime: The Stories You Might Have Missed This Week
Written by Cristian Stanic, Kieron Byatt, Nikita Binetti & Terry Phillips -
From film to TV, gaming to comics and everything in between, here’s what you might have missed in pop culture news this week.
Fans of the Winchester brothers were dismayed by the news that Supernatural’s next season will be the last in a stretch, which has seen 14 seasons produced since its debut 2005. The 15th and final season is expected to begin airing sometime in October.
Tech giant Apple has announced the launch of its own streaming service, Apple TV+, along with a huge collection of big-name stars and directors hyping it up.
Cult sci-fi anthology show The Twilight Zone is returning to TV screens next week in a third revival of the series since its original debut in 1959. This time the mind-bending series is being helmed by Us and Get Out director Jordan Peele. The new Twilight Zone launches on the US-based CBS All Access service on April 1, with new trailers dropping this past week.
Probably generating more buzz online at the moment than the big screen Episode IX, is the upcoming Star Wars live-action TV series The Mandalorian. An interesting new development is a behind-the-scenes photo recently offered by showrunner Jon Favreau’s Instagram feed. The candid pic shows Thor: Ragnarok director Taika Waititi providing a voiceover for what appears to be the droid bounty hunter IG-88, who was first glimpsed aboard Darth Vader’s Star Destroyer in The Empire Strikes Back alongside Boba Fett.
Amazon is putting a pilot episode together based on Stephen King’s The Dark Tower book series, and have reportedly cast their Gunslinger and Man in Black. Playing the role of Roland Deschain (which was portrayed by Idris Elba in the 2017 film adaptation) is Nightflyer’s Sam Strike, and the Man in Black is being played by Vikings’ Jasper Pääkkönen.
After a stellar first season, DC streaming is wasting no time in getting season two of Titans together. Recently they have cast artist, model and YouTuber Chella Man as Jericho, the mute son of the villain Deathstroke.
In local news, Happy Android, a short documentary which focuses on Melbourne street performer Paul Cooper and his talking robot alter-ego, will have its world premiere at the prestigious Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival next month.
Also, Perth-based filmmakers have recently taken a crack at transforming their hometown into Gotham City in a new fan-film Batgirl Returns. Starring co-writer and co-director Chloe Brown as Barbara Gordon, aka Batgirl, the film also features a complete array of well-known Gotham foes including Bane, the Riddler and the Joker. The full film is planned to be released online later this year.
Get ready for an epic showdown with the ‘Mad Titan’ next month in Avengers: Endgame. The film’s runtime has been released by cinemas hosting the film, and it clocks in at a whopping three hours and two minutes. For comparison, the theatrical releases of the first two The Lord of the Rings outings went for a total of two hours and 59 minutes.
However, while all eyes are on how the Avengers will reverse Thanos’s snappening, you can’t forget that we’ll also be treated to the second MCU Spider-Man film in July this year. A series of new posters have been released teasing Spidey, in his new black and red suit, adventuring his way across famous European cities in Spider-Man: Far From Home.
Despite not even having a finished script yet, shooting on the next James Bond outing is scheduled to start next week in Norway. Director Cary Fukunaga and crew are heading to film scenes at a frozen lake before the weather changes and it begins to thaw. The film’s planned April 2020 release date would prohibit them from waiting until the lake freezes over again.
The ‘90s seem to be flavour-of-the-month in Hollywood at the moment, and the next classic to get a reboot is witch-centric The Craft. Columbia Pictures are teaming up with Blumhouse Studios to bring together an updated version of the film under the direction of Zoe Lister-Jones.
It’s Birds vs. Pigs no more in the trailer for Angry Birds 2, which shows Red and Chuck uniting Bird and Pig Island when the threat of a third, unknown island looms. ‘Enemies become Frenemies’ as the unlikely ensemble work together to save their homes; but not without some mishaps along the way.
Borderlands 3 has officially been confirmed! Developers have unveiled the very first gameplay footage in an extended trailer, with more details expected next week.
Atlus has revealed Persona 5 The Royal, for PlayStation 4. The teaser shows off a new character talking about the Phantom Thieves, but that’s about all it shows. We still don’t know what it is. Could it be something like Persona 4 Golden? A ‘deluxe’ edition of the game with brand new content? We’ll have to wait until April 24, at the Persona Super Live Concert, for more info.
The Closed Beta for the highly-anticipated Mortal Kombat is live, right now! If you pre-ordered on PS4 or Xbox One, you’ll have access to that Beta until April 1, and if you didn’t do that, go on YouTube and watch some fatalities, they’re the most creative ones yet.
The big-ticket item this week in anime was the premiere of the new Fruits Basket anime, which had a limited theatrical run in America. According to reviews from inside, it was fantastic and will please anime and manga fans.
We now know when the highly-acclaimed classic Evangelion will finally be added to Netflix. It has been trapped in a licensing hell for several years, with no new editions being produced, but it will see the light once again on June 21! Netflix will be doing their own dub of the series, that will not feature any returning cast members. It’s not clear if that original ADV dub will ever be commercially available again.
In new seasons, the insanely popular Re:Zero, and the unexpected hit Cells at Work, will both be getting a second season.
The Chicago Comic and Entertainment Expo has delivered numerous exclusive announcements and revelations this week, like a new Valkyrie series from Jason Aaron and Al Ewing. But the juiciest news of all was Marvel’s cloak-and-dagger teasing of a mysterious event set for the end of 2019. No details have been released other than we can expect the event to kick off in December.
Comic legends Greg Capullo and Todd McFarlane have announced that they’re reuniting on a new secret project. No details have been unveiled yet but the project marks the reunion of the two, who have worked together in the past on McFarlane’s Spawn in the ‘90s. It will also be the first series where the two have drawn side by side.
Last week the news broke that legendary writer Jonathan Hickman had some new projects at Marvel on the way. And at C2E2, the comics magnate announced the titles of Hickman’s new X-Men projects: House of X and Powers of X. Both will be coloured by Marte Gracia with the former being pencilled by Pepe Larraz and the latter by R.B. Silva. Both series will go on sale in July.
Ethiopia has gotten its first female superhero comic. Following on from Etan Comics’ first Ethiopian superhero comic book Jember, comes Hawi. The first issue is almost complete, but Etan founder Beserat Debebe has recently launched a Kickstarter campaign to cover the remaining production costs.
Marvel has announced their major event Absolute Carnage with an August release date. The event is overseen by writer Donny Cates, artist Ryan Stegman and colourist Frank Martin. The countdown kicked off with Spider-Man/Venom #1, which went on sale earlier this month. To celebrate the massive event Marvel released a series of variants depicting “Carnage-sized” nightmarish versions of all our favourite characters.
THIS WEEK’S PICKS
Detective Comics #1000 (DC) – 80 years in the making, the 1,000th issue of Detective Comics is here! This 96-page giant special is a must have for comic readers big and small, casual and fanatic. Celebrate eight decades of DC and Batman with this all-star compilation of writers and artists as they deliver their definitive take on the Caped Crusader. Be sure to head to your local comic book store and get multiple copies if you can, including the multiple variants. This is one for the history books.
Sabrina the Teenage Witch #1(Archie Comics) – Fans of Riverdale and the recent Sabrina Netflix series, do yourselves a favour and pick up this brand new series set in the Archie universe. Written by Kelly Thompson, with art by Veronica and Andy Fish.
Glow #1 (IDW) – Straight from your Netflix screens comes the new series of the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling in comic book form. Written by Tini Howard with art by Hannah Templer.
Bad Luck Chuck #1(Dark Horse) – Born with bad luck, Charlene “Chuck” Manchester hires out her ability as a disaster on call for her clients’ profit. The only thing about dealing with so much bad luck, is that it eventually catches up with you… Written by Lela Gwenn with art by Matthew Dow Smith.
Hero for Hire #1(DC/Wonder Comics) – The latest new mini-series under the Wonder Comics lineup sees the return of DC’s Hero for Hire. The Hero Dial is a phone that grants you superpowers, and teen rebel Miguel has just discovered it. Written by Sam Humphries with art by Joe Quinones.