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With a POW, a BAM and a KA-BOOM, 2016 is shaping up to be the year of superhero movies. Cinema screens around the globe will be filled with dark, brooding characters, epic clashes between friends, villains for hire, and the fate of the world. The question is, how much do we really know about all of these masked vigilantes and titans of terror?
Memeburn has rounded up all of the comic book movies coming out this year along with what you should be reading or watching to catch up with the character.
Deadpool – 12 February
First up is the “merc with a mouth”. Constantly breaking the fourth wall, Deadpool is a mutant imbued with a potent healing factor. This character doesn’t care for the rules as he’s often taking the lives of those he’s up against while breaking the fourth wall. He’s Marvel’s badass and will be played onscreen by Ryan Reynolds. Yes, the same actor who starred in the terrible Green Lantern movie and played a mute Deadpool in Wolverine — we can all forget about those roles.
If you’re interested in Deadpool then you may want to check out Marvel’s The Ultimate Graphic Novels Collection, Vol. 63 – Deadpool: Wade Wilson’s War. It’s a great introduction to the character and a stellar book overall. It has been composed with an unreliable narrator in mind, which fits perfectly fits Deadpool’s persona.
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice – 25 March
This has been years in the making, and Warner Brothers is fueling that hype train with anything and everything. Taking place after the less than super Man of Steel, BvS will put these two classic heros against other and then Mark Zuckerberg – I mean Lex Luthor, and Doomsday, and maybe a few other things. It’s also a soft launch for The Justice League and related movies. Does anyone else think DC is putting too many eggs into one basket?
Judging by the let’s-show-everything-in-the-trailers for the movie, it looks to be an amalgamation of The Death of Superman and The Dark Knight Strikes. Both storylines are as classic as their titular characters.
Captain America: Civil War – 6 May
What’s shaping up to be The Avengers 2.5, “Captain America 3: Include all of the Heroes” will be including all of the heroes. Okay, so a lot of the heroes are B-list because not all of the A-listers will be included – it’s an inclusive movie. Civil Ware really does look like a lot of fun and an emotional rollercoaster ride of battles, brawls, fighting, and fisticuffs.
As with most movies on this list, it’ll be loosely based off of the Marvel Comics story arc of the same name. There are, of course, alterations, but the core comic book will give you the gist of it all.
X-Men: Apocalypse – 27 May
Another entry into the convoluted mess that is the X-Men cinematic franchise, but this time including a villain more powerful than most the mutants will face. Apocalypse is supposedly not only the first mutant, but the first character gifted with the power of the god-like Celestials. He uses these gifts to take over an entire alternate universe, create some horsemen for himself (get it?) and become a child… but that’s a story for another day. This could be another First Class or another X3. We’ll have to hold judgment.
There are a lot of storylines that include big blue Apocalypse and his four horsemen, but we recommend going for the original. Age of Apocalypse was an epic in the mid-90s that affected everything mutant related in Marvel’s line-up. It takes place in an alternate timeline where Apocalypse rules and humanity are his slaves. Yea, we don’t think the movie will follow this one.
Suicide Squad – 5 August
After all of the goodie-two-shoes superheroes — except for Deadpool, of course — it’s time for something a little dark. Note, we said darker; gritty isn’t the same thing. Suicide Squad takes a few A-level and C-level supervillains, gives them a choice they can’t refuse, and forces them to work for the government on the side of the good. Of course with the likes of Harley Quinn and The Joker involved, things won’t go according to plan.
For this entry, we recommend watching Batman: Assault on Arkham, which is set in the same universe as the Warner Brothers Arkham video games. It’s all about the suicide squad and is one hell of a watch.
Gambit – 27 October
Debuting in Uncanny X-Men #266, this kinetic energy manipulating mutant has appeared in almost every series featuring the X-Men. Often a love interest to Rogue, he was a close friend of Magneto in Age of Apocalypse, the leader of Weapon X in Exiles, and even a zombie – like most of the Marvel universe.
Gambit is the exception to our list. While there are a number of comics we could recommend you read, we’d rather steer you towards the 1994 X-Men animated TV series. He features as a core part of the X-Men team and gets a decent amount of screen time. There’s no better way to experience Gambit than through this show.
Doctor Strange – 4 November
An Avenger, a Defender, part of The Order, and even the Illuminate, Doctorr Strange is one of the most recognisable character’s in Marvel’s lineup — at least to comic book geeks. Debuting in the aptly named Strange Tales #110 in 1963, he’s known as the mystic of the Marvel universe and one of the more powerful heroes.
If you’re wanting to know about Marvel’s mystic then you may want to start with the 2007 series, Doctor Strange: The Oat. The story features strange with a dilemma involving his Hippocratic oath, the formula to cure all known diseases, and his origin story.