What the heck happened to the month of March?!?
Seriously, this month just ran away from me like the Reverse-Flash running from Barry Allen. Like The Hand trying to skip out on a fight with Daredevil, and Elektra.
March came in all mild-mannered, and than changed it's clothes in a broom closet to take off faster than a speeding bullet!
Can you tell I have Superheroes on the brain?
What an amazing month it's been to be a Superhero fan, am I right? There has been a veritable butt load of Superhero TV shows, and events, movies, and gaming goodness. It hasn't all been astounding, but just the sheer volume, and scale of it is staggering.
I've been getting in on the four-color fun personally by running a lot of Superhero RPG awesomeness myself, and I couldn't be happier. Well, I guess I could always be happier [as I always think I can do better], but so far so good. Even great if I may be so brave, and bold!
A lot to discuss...Where to begin?
Masked Age '66!
I have run two sessions (Issues) now of The Masked Age '66 for Dan's Group, and it looks like we're going full on campaign mode with this one for sure.
The premise is 'Silver Age with a Twist', as the heroes, villains, and NPCs are modeled after the comic books of the mid-to-late 60s while simultaneously dealing with the real world issues of that turbulent time. We are definitely not going into 'Watchmen' territory here, but we won't be ignoring the political, social, and cultural elements that defined the era.
The system is a Japanese fan-made RPG my friend found at a convention over there not long ago called 'The Masked Age' (actually Masuku no Jikan, or 'The Time of the Masks'). See more about it in my previous post.
I am loving our team! We have..
Aegis (Experiment Paragon Epitome) played by Leo. A dove/Anti-Vietnam War Superman analog. He is quite political, and an avid supporter of Robert Kennedy, and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. He is a legacy character, being the son of the Golden Age superhero Major Victory. He possesses the classic Epitome power set: Flight, Invulnerability, Super Strength, Super Senses, and Laser Vision.
Drifter (Cosmic Crusader Magician) played by Dan. A member of a mysterious group of interstellar, and interdimensional travelers, Drifter has decided to remain on Earth for a while. He is haunted by the knowledge of lost memories (that is, he is aware he has amnesia, and that the condition may be self-inflicted). These are memories of something terrible that happened, or that he did. Drifter can open portals, and gates to travel, attack enemies, or defend himself. With the help of a focus - such as a car, motorcycle, or other vehicle - he can teleport anywhere on Earth. Drifter is in with the scene man. He is hip, happening, and in the now daddy-o. A cosmic 'street level' hero, he is known and well liked by the lost, the looking, and the disenfranchised across the highways, and byways of the world. Far out brother.
Mummy Queen (Supernatural Obliged Adept) played by Alex. The spirit of a murdered, and mummified queen of Ancient who possesses, and transforms her host, a mousy Egyptologist working for New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art. Mummy Queen is played with the no quarter taken, no quarter given arrogance of Namor, The Sub-mariner, or the mighty Thor. At the same time, she has a nobility, and a sense of compassion that reminds me of the classic Wonder Woman. She can stretch, and manipulate her mummy bandages in order to snare, entangle, whip, or throw objects, and opponents. Mummy Queen also possesses enhanced strength, and the ability to make dramatic entrances, and exists.
Titan (Cosmic Obliged Gestalt - Metamorph/Epitome) played by Arthur. A Human agent of the Council of Galactic Order, it is Titan's job to protect the Earth from alien invasion, especially of the gigantic, Japanese movie monster kind. As such, Titan is able to grow to enormous size, as well as shrink down to just a few inches. At any height, he can fly, has Super Strength, and Invulnerability. He also possesses an Energy Blast that he fires from his hands, or the faceplate of his helmet. My favorite power is his 'Kaiju Sense' which alerts him when monsters are present, or about to attack.
Robogirl (Technology Genius Gestalt - Epitome/Magician) play by Erick. A young, Japanese woman who came to the United States to make her fortune, she is both an engineering savant, and a wealthy if reclusive CEO. She wears a suit of powered armor that gives her Flight, Super Strength, Armored Protection, and Blasts, but her real power is her unparalleled mechanical genius. She can build, modify, and analyze advanced technology in moments. Her political and social views, especially on the subject of military conflict, differ greatly from some of her teammates (notably Aegis, and Drifter). In addition, her background involves her parents adding the Nazis in World War II by building many of the diabolical super-weapons they used to battle the Golden Age heroes (such as Aegis' Dad!). The player noted that although she is called Robogirl, her 'comic book series' is called Robogirl Z.
Our initial plot deals with the team members assembling all together for the first time (though some of them knew each other prior to the start of the campaign) in order to thwart a plot by The Scarab Society, a mystic cult that has existed since the very beginnings of the kingdoms of the Nile. They are the Arch-Nemesis of Mummy Queen, and responsible for her mortal death.
I hope to have more soon, as we are due to run the third issue, and the end of the story arc tomorrow night!
Kapow! The Freedom Force of Earth-F-Omega!
The regular GM of the Google Hangouts group I'm a part of had to take a night off for some family stuff, so I returned the group to the alternate world of Earth-F-Omega, and their PCs in the new, and revitalized Freedom Force.
This is my second time using this particular Supers setting, which is why I say 'returned'. You see, the last time I ran Kapow!, it was also in this particular setting, which is basically a variant on the Freedom City universe of the Mutants & Masterminds RPG. That previous time I was also filling in, but only so our regular GM could recharge, and play for a change.
After dealing with his personal obligations our GM, Keith, was able to join in with his character from last time. As the story wasn't really finished in the one session, we decided to continue with me as GM until such time as the story is complete. I ran last week, this week, and we should be finished next week. Keith will then return for a one night adventure before he heads off on vacation (have fun Keith!).
While Keith is away from two weeks, we're going to...no wait...I'll save that for next month.
Trust me...it's going to be interesting.
Cosmic Handbook for Mutants and Masterminds 3rd Edition!
I've been waiting at least two editions for this book, and I finally got it as a belated birthday present from a good friend of mine.
A sourcebook/supplement on all things cosmic, from Alien Empires to Existential Entities, is right in this fantastically illustrated, and put together tome. I highly recommend it to any fan of Superhero adventures across Time, and Space.
OK, other stuff...
Film and Television!
Supergirl and The Flash!
This past Monday on the CBS live-action television series Supergirl (a series I am quite enjoying by the way), The Flash guest-starred! That's right, Grant Gustin appeared on Supergirl as The Flash/Barry Allen from HIS OWN TV SERIES! Wow! I don't know about you, but to me this is monumental.
This is a crossover, not just from one program to another, but a crossover across networks. A hero from Earth-CW has traveled to Earth-CBS! THIS IS INCREDIBLE! For an old school DC Comics fan like me, this is a dream come true.
Because the episode was charming, fun, action-packed, and very much like an old school comic book in many ways. At the same time, it was a modern, prime-time TV show, applicable to and enjoyable by a much wider audience. This is what happens when you get it.
The makers of Flash, and Supergirl - They get it.
Batman vs. Superman
I don't really want to talk about this...um...film. But...
If you saw it, and enjoyed it, good for you. I'm glad. Honest.
I found it completely awful. I can't really tell you what the plot was, what the director, and writer were thinking, or why they made the choices they did. For me, the movie failed on all fronts. Most of all, it failed its two lead characters.
In all the ways I enjoyed Supergirl AND Flash, I hated Batman VERSUS Superman. The basic differences in approach aside, the main issue was the characters not acting to their established natures. While Supergirl acted like Supergirl, and Flash acted like Flash, Batman and Superman were barely recognizable in their movie.
You could excuse it by saying, "These are alternate versions of the characters you know". That would be fine if you had established this universe properly. Even better, if you had developed a film universe with the characters as they'd always been, depicted in the base forms essentially. Then a variation like this would be an interesting contrast. But no.
Daredevil - Season 2
Great! Extremely well done series. I did have some minor issues with the second half of Season 2 once Elektra is introduced, but overall I think the whole thing was pretty spectacular. Looking forward to a Season 3, and of course the upcoming Luke Cage Season 1.
There are other things of a Superheroic nature I would like to talk about, but right now it's getting late here in the Big Apple, and I need to get some sleep.
Rest easy citizens,