Fringe’s Alternate Universe Comic Covers


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Fringe has really come on in leaps and bounds, after a slightly shaky start during the first half of season one, quietly establishing itself as one of TV’s more intelligent sci-fi dramas.

The main story arc involves an impending war between our world and a parallel, alternate reality which is broadly similar to ours but has many subtle differences. It has also been badly damaged by a number of experiments that breached the barrier between the two realities.

Season two concluded this week on UK TV (a couple of weeks after the US airing). The two-part finale mostly took place in the alternate reality and if you were paying attention, there were lots of great little differences and changes from our world to spot.

For comics fans the best touch was a blink-and-you’ll-miss-them set of framed comic books on the wall of an apartment where one of the main characters, Peter Bishop (Joshua Jackson), is taken after he crosses over from our reality to theirs.

They reimagine five of the most iconic and best-known DC Comics covers of the past 40 years, adding in some subtle, alternate-reality twists. It was hard to see them on the wall during the brief scene so here they are, alongside the more familiar covers which inspired them. Our original, real-world versions are on the left, the Fringe variants are on the left.

This one is my favourite, I think. The 1987 Giffen/DeMatteis relaunch of the Justice League, with Jonah Hex replacing Green Lantern Guy Gardner in the line-up:

This one is also very good. The famous “Death Of Supergirl” cover from issue seven of Crisis On Infinite Earths (1985) gets a very different outcome:

The famous Green Lantern/Green Arrow issue 76 (April 1970) – the first issue of the acclaimed, ground-breaking Denny O’Neill/Neil Adams run on the title – gets a colour shift:

Frank Miller‘s revolutionary 1986 miniseries The Dark Knight Returns becomes The Man Of Steel Returns:

And finally, another Batman/Superman swap, as 1992’s Death Of Superman becomes the Death of Batman (which happened for real last year in our reality – sort of):

You can see bigger, high-res scans of the alternate covers here, at the DC Universe blog.

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The Monday Movie – Blue Velvet


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Hollywood hellraiser Dennis Hopper died on Saturday, aged 74, after a battle with prostate cancer.

I remember the first time I saw Hopper in a film. It was 1986 or 87, I was a teenager and I rented Blue Velvet from the local video library. It was also the first David Lynch film I had ever seen and it blew me away, not least because of Hopper’s powerhouse performance in a deeply disturbing role.

He plays Frank Booth, a perverse, sadistic, drug-addicted sociopath who has kidnapped the husband and child of lounge singer Dorothy Vallens (Isabella Rosselini) to force her to become his slave and take part in his bizarre psycho-sexual fantasies.

Clean cut college student Jeffrey Beaumont (Kyle MacLachlan) stumbles into Frank’s dark world, which lurks beneath the seemingly respectable surface of his home town of Lumberton, when he finds a severed ear in a field.

The film marked both a slight shift towards the mainstream for Lynch – which continued a few years later with his TV masterpiece Twin Peaks, which further explored and developed many of the themes from Blue Velvet – and a career rebirth for Hopper, whose own struggles with drugs and violent temper had all-but ostracised him from the mainstream film industry at the time.

Hopper famously read the script for Blue Velvet and told Lynch he had to cast him as Frank Booth because “I AM Frank Booth”.

Here are a couple of his finest moments from Blue Velvet, starting off with the film’s signature scene, which features some memorable lip-synching from co-star Dean Stockwell:

And here is a memorable (for all the wrong reasons) screen kiss:

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My Desk Is 8-Bit: Amazing Stop Frame Animation


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The Choob is old enough to remember when we all thought parallax scrolling was the coolest thing we’d ever seen in a video game, so this superb animation – titled My Desk Is 8 Bit – looks particularly impressive to me.

Artist Alex Varanese uses hundreds of little coloured blocks to create a stop-motion animated recreation of an old 8-bit video game.

The effect is simply stunning.

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Iron Baby…


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Lost Week Epilogue: The Alternate Endings


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As unveiled on the special edition of Jimmy Kimmel Live! that aired immediately after the final episode of Lost on Sunday night, here are three alternate endings that didn’t make the cut. The second one is particularly outstanding.

In case you need an explanation of the third one (in which case, shame on you for not being more familiar with the work of the great Bob Newhart) this post here helps explain the context.

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Lost Week: The Best Lost Fan Vids – Part Two


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Well, our six-year journey almost over.

As I type this, we are less than five hours away from the start of the final episode of Lost (less than two hours if you’re on east-coast USA).

So here is the finale of the Choob’s Lost week – one last batch of the best fan videos I could find (plus a few professionally made ones).

Enjoy and I’ll see you in another life, without Lost, Brutha.

Here’s US talk-show host Jimmy Kimmel‘s excellent reaction to the controversial Jacob and Man In Black origin episode a few weeks ago:

I so wish that this product was real:

Previously on Lost:

Muppets!

The Swedish Chef!

Next, The Onion News Network reports on how the final season makes Lost fans more annoying than ever. Harsh but fair!

Desmond: The Brutha! compilation:

And finally, this official ABC promo originally aired, I believe, during the 2006 Superbowl. It’s Robert Palmer‘s Addicted To… Lost?

Final Season Of ‘Lost’ Promises To Make Fans More Annoying Than Ever

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Lost Week – The Top 10 Moments In Lost


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Earlier this week, I posted my list of the best scenes from Lost.

Today, it’s time for my favourite little moments from the show – by which, I mean the brief little incidents, or big action scenes or snippets of dialogue that didn’t necessarily add anything to the ongoing story (though many of them did) but added to the fun and/or the wow factor of the show.

And so, in no particular order, here are the ten best Lost moments:

First up, Dr Leslie Arzt – a cautionary tale. Leslie was one of the more entertaining of the supporting cast of B-list survivors we met. After complaining about not being included in any of the missions carried out by the main cast of survivors, Jack, Kate and co take him along on their expedition to get some dynamite from shipwrecked 19th century sailing ship The Black Rock:

The following scene isn’t really part of my list but was a nice little season six nod back to Leslie’s fate in season one:

Talking of things exploding, there had been much discussion during season two about whether keying those numbers into the compter every 108 minutes did indeed prevent a world-threatening disaster or whether it was just some sort of Dharma Initiative psychological experiment. In the season two finale, we found out:

And here is what happened after Desmond turned that key:

Next Ben at his most vulnerable and wounded:

And here’s Ben at his coldest – specifically,  his response to Locke after killing Keamy, the man who shot his daughter, despite the fact that Keamy had planted a bomb on the freighter, where many of the plane crash survivors had been taken, and rigged it to detonate if his heart stops:

Talking of Ben’s dark side, here’s the moment he sided with The Others and took revenge on his drunken dad and the Dharma Initiative for making his childhood miserable:

That’s enough death and destruction – time for some lurve from the two couples who have, in their different ways, given Lost its heart.

Here’s the heartwarming moment when Rose got her reward for keeping faith that her husband Bernard was still alive somewhere, even though he was not one of the survivors on the beach after the plane crash:

This reunion tops even that:

Next, the island vanishes:

This was Locke’s defining moment in the early years:

And finally, I’m a fan of Glasgow Celtic FC, so these two Desmond moments were just priceless:

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