Sunday, February 23, 2020

Write Up: SUPERMAN from KINGDOM COME!

This week, I am very busy with another project, so I'm doing a simple write up (for me). This one is from the best comic book story ever told- Kingdom Come by Mark Waid and Alex Ross. I'll do this entire story-line in time, but here's my favorite, Superman.

Image result for superman kingdom come

SUPERMAN
DEX
14
STR
28
BODY
28
Alter Ego
INT
11
WILL
18
MIND
12
Kal-El
INFL
9
AURA
17
SPIRIT
10
Motivation
INIT
44
WEALTH
5
HP
175
Responsibility of Power
POWERS
Directional Hearing: 10, Extended Hearing: 10, Flight: 15, Heat Vision: 16, Invulnerability: 28, Microscopic Vision: 15 (This is fine enough to see radio waves and light particles, allowing Superman to see radar and sonar), Regeneration: 15 (Only works if exposed to bright, pure yellow sunlight), Sealed Systems: 20, Solar Sustenance: 25, Super Breath: 12 (Super Cold), Super Hearing: 10, Superspeed: 8, Systemic Antidote: 28, Telescopic Vision: 15, Thermal Vision: 15, X-Ray Vision: 15
SUPERMAN’S POWER STUNTS
Superman can Power Stunt his Strength to create the Shockwave power by stomping his foot or clapping his hands. This costs 1 HP per AP and does not cause a Burnout.
Superman can also Power Stunt Superspeed to create the Digging power by spinning like a drill. This costs 1 HP per AP and does not cause a Burnout.
Superman can Power Stunt his Flight to create the Air Control power. This costs 1 HP per AP and does not cause a Burnout.
SKILLS
Charisma: 9, Detective: 7, Scientist: 10, Vehicles: 7
ADVANTAGES
Area Knowledge (Metropolis), Artist (Journalist, Writer), Attractive, Expansive Headquarters (The Fortress of Solitude- see below), Insta-Change (Superman changes so quickly it is as good as instant), Indestructible Costume, Iron Nerves, Leadership, Lightning Reflexes, Longevity, Sharp Eye
CONNECTIONS
High- JLA, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern (Alan Scott), The Flash (Wally West), Hawkman, Red Robin
Low- Batman, Lord Orion, Green Arrow, King Arthur Curry
DRAWBACKS
Altered Biology (Near Human), Arch Enemy (Lex Luthor), Authority Figure (To the super hero community), Guilt (Over the death of Lois and the staff of the Daily Planet), Catastrophic Irrational Attraction to protecting life
ADVANTAGES and DRAWBACKS
Before the events of Kingdom Come: Superman has a High Connection to Wonder Woman only and no connection to anyone else. He has the Pet (Krypo) advantage. He has the Exile (Voluntary) drawback and does not have Authority Figure.

Following the events of Kingdom Come: Superman has a High Connection to Batman and the Pet (Krypto) advantage, He has the Married (Wonder Woman) drawback.
VULNERABILITIES
Attack Vulnerability (-2 CS vs. magic; Conversely, when attacking mystical beings or magical defenses, Superman suffers a +2 CS to all OV/RV)
SUPERMAN’S EQUIPMENT
THE FORTRESS OF SOLITUDE [BODY: 18, Lab: 12, Security: 14, The key to the Fortress weighs 24 APs and it is guarded by Krypto]
FORTRESS COMPUTER [BODY: 8, INT: 14, WILL: 10, MIND: 12, INFL: 6, AURA: 5, SPIRIT: 6, Gadgetry: 8, Medicine: 8, Scientist: 8, Recall: 24, Radio Communications: 24, Illusion: 12 OR Super Ventriloquism: 12 (Only used to project the Hologram or the Voice of Jor-El), Scholar (Kryptonian Culture, Geography, History, and Science), Split: 6, R#2] The interface of the Fortress Computer is either a hologram of Jor El  or his voice and it is programmed with his memories and personality.
Phantom Zone Projector [BODY: 18, Dimension Travel: 25 (Power Linked to Warp, Phantom Zone only), Warp: 25, R#2]
KELEX [DEX: 6, STR: 5, BODY: 5, INT: 8, WILL: 8, MIND: 8, INFL: 1, AURA: 1, SPIRIT: 1, INIT: 15 (26), Flight: 6, Radio Communications: 18 (Allows Kelex to download a split of the Fortress Computer), Stretching: 2 (Only used to stretch arms), Radar: 12]
KAL-EL’S SPACESHIP [BODY: 13, Flight: 40, Sealed Systems: 23, Recall: 20, Solar Sustenance: 23 (Only used to keep the child within alive)] In the Silver Age, the infant Kal-El was wrapped in indestructible blankets that later became his uniform (see below).


Image result for superman kingdom comeImage result for superman kingdom come


Image result for superman kingdom come brandon routh
Still the best post-Christopher Reeve Superman!

I know, I know- I'm supposed to say that Watchmen is the best comic book tale ever told. I hold it in very high esteem, to be sure, but I think Kingdom Come is better. Far better. 

Sunday, February 16, 2020

Write Ups: Earth 2! Huntress! Power Girl! Superman!

Heroes of Earth 2



          I've always liked legacy heroes, so characters like those found in Infinity Inc. always fire my imagination. Because of that, I always liked the idea of Earth 2, where all the original heroes grew old, got married, and started families. 
         Thus, I present my two favorite legacy heroines of all time: Helena Wayne and Kara Zor-L.
          (And, of course, I couldn't resist yet another version of Superman...) 

HUNTRESS (EARTH 2)
DEX
9
STR
4
BODY
4
Alter Ego
INT
10
WILL
12
MIND
10
Helena Wayne
INFL
7
AURA
6
SPIRIT
6
Motivation
INIT
30
WEALTH
18
HP
135
Responsibility of Power
SKILLS (All Linked)
Acrobatics: 9, Charisma:7, Detective: 11, Gadgetry: 11, Martial Artist: 9, Scientist: 11, Spy: 11, Thief: 9, Vehicles: 9, Weaponry: 9
ADVANTAGES
Area Knowledge (Gotham City), Attractive, Connoisseur, Genius, Expansive Headquarters (The Batcave: Lab: 12, Security: 10), Intensive Training, Iron Nerves, Lightning Reflexes, Scholar (Law), Sharp Eye, Weapon Specialization (Crossbow)
CONNECTIONS
High- JSA, Infinity Inc, Power Girl, Robin, Gotham PD, Gotham DA Harry Sims
Low- Arkham Asylum, Gotham State Prison, Gotham University, Street, High Society
DRAWBACKS
Minor Irrational Fear of becoming a criminal like her mother, Secret Identity
EQUIPMENT
Pistol Crossbow [BODY: 5, Projectile Weapons: 5 (No AV, Lethal), Ammo: 3, R#2] It takes 2 phases to reload this weapon.
Throwing Knife (x2) [BODY: 6, Claws: 1 (Diminishing, Half STR)] The attack power of this weapon represents throwing multiple weapons at a target. If attacking multiple targets, reduce the attack’s total EV by one for each target and apply the Multi-Attack modifiers.
BATCOMPUTER [BODY: 6, INT: 6, WILL: 2, MIND: 2, Detective: 6, Gadgetry: 6, Medicine (Forensics): 6, Military Science: 6, Scientist: 6, Spy: 6, Recall: 35, Radio Communications: 18, R#3]
PORTABLE CRIME LAB [BODY: 2, INT: 4, WILL: 4, MIND: 2, Comprehend Languages: 4, Microscopic Vision: 12, Radio Communications: 15 (Allows communication to the Batcomputer), Detective: 5, R#3]
BATCYCLE [STR: 4, BODY: 7, Running: 6, Radio Communications: 18, Projectile Weapons: 5 (No AV, Serious Power Burnout), R#2]
 
HUNTRESS’ UTILITY BELT:
Batarang w/Batline [BODY: 9, Strike: 2 (Diminishing, Half STR), Snare: 9 (No AV), Gliding: 3 (adds to STR to determine range), Returns] Line is 4 APs long.
Batbola [BODY: 2, Snare: 4 (No AV, Snare Only)] A bola is 0 APs long.
Batbug [BODY: 1, Radio Communications: 9 (partner receiver only)] Detection OV/RV: 5
Batcuffs [STR: 13, BODY: 13] STR is only used to hold targets.
Binoculars [BODY: 2, Telescopic Vision: 13]
Disguise Kit [BODY: 1, Misc. Advantage: -1 CS to OV/RV of disguise attempts]
Electromagnet [BODY: 3, Magnetic Control: 7, R#2]
Fingerprinting Kit [BODY: 1, Misc. Advantage: -1 CS to OV/RV of clue analysis & identification systems attempts]
Infrared Flashlight & Bat-Goggles [BODY: 1, Thermal Vision: 12]
Laser Torch [BODY: 1, Heat Vision: 12 (No Range- only good for a few inches), R#5]
Lock Picks [BODY: 1, Misc. Advantage: -1 CS to OV/RV of lockpicking attempts]
Micro-Cassette Recorder [BODY: 1, Recall: 12 (Audio only for up to 12 APs of time), R#2] Range of 4 APs
Miniature Camera [BODY: 1, Recall: 12 (Visual only), R#2] Range of 9 APs
Plastic Explosives (x6) [BODY: 3, Bomb: 8 (Full Force), R#3]
Rebreather [BODY: 1, Sealed Systems: 12 (Provides air only), R#2] Acts as a gas mask and provides air if underwater.
Smoke Capsules (x6) [BODY: 1, Fog: 7 (Full Force), R#2]
Tear Gas Capsules (x12) [BODY: 1, Sensory Block: 5 (Gas Effect, Full Force, Affects vision only), R#2]
Universal Antidote [BODY: 1, Systemic Antidote: 9]
ACD Omni-Gadgets: 10 (x3)


Power Girl (EARTH 2)
DEX
15
STR
33
BODY
36
Alter Ego
INT
8
WILL
19
MIND
9
Kara Zor-L, Karen Starr
INFL
10
AURA
12
SPIRIT
12
Motivation
INIT
52
WEALTH
8
HP
145
Upholding the Good
POWERS
Digging: 12, Dimensional Travel: 15 (Power linked to Flight, Travel Only), Flight: 37, Heat Vision: 25, Invulnerability: 28, Microscopic Vision: 11, Sealed Systems: 7, Shockwave: 8, Super Breath: 20 (Super Cold), Superspeed: 17, Systemic Antidote: 7, Telescopic Vision: 15, Thermal Vision: 15, Time Travel: 22, X-Ray Vision: 20
SKILLS
Charisma: 5, Gadgetry: 8, Scientist: 8
ADVANTAGES
Area Knowledge (Metropolis), Attractive, Buddy (Andrew Vinson), Iron Nerves,  Lightning Reflexes, Longevity, Scholar (Computer Science)
CONNECTIONS
High- JSA, Infinity Inc, Huntress, Superman, Pemberton Industries, Ultimate Computer Corporation
Low- Metropolis PD
DRAWBACKS
Altered Biology (Near Human), Secret Identity, Misc.: Kara was raised in a VR environment and occasionally has trouble interacting with the real world
VULNERABILITIES
Loss Vulnerability (Out of yellow sunlight, All powers; Physical Attributes drop to 3 each)
Attack Vulnerability (-4 CS vs. magic; Conversely, when attacking mystical beings or magical defenses, Power Girl suffers a +4 CS to all OV/RV)
Misc.: Gravity attacks subtract their RAPs from all of Power Girl’s physical Attributes and Powers, but cannot reduce them to 0
Kryptonite Vulnerabilities:
GREEN- This is the typical kryptonite. It usually only affects Power Girl when she has her powers. Within 2 APs it causes great pain that can be overcome but not ignored. It causes a Loss Vulnerability within 1 AP. Physical Attributes and all powers are reduced to 1 and Power Girl suffers agonizing pain so great that she cannot even stand. She may make a action check with his DEX/STR of 1/1 against an OV/RV of 2 to drag herself out of the way or to throw the rock out of distance. HPs cannot be spent on this attempt. It also causes a Fatal Vulnerability within 1 AP. It causes 1 AP of killing damage each phase, killing Power Girl in 5 APs of time. Luckily, she can still spend HPs to heal damage, staving off death.


SUPERMAN (EARTH 2)
DEX
17
STR
36
BODY
38
Alter Ego
INT
10
WILL
23
MIND
15
Clark Kent/Kal-L
INFL
10
AURA
20
SPIRIT
14
Motivation
INIT
 64
WEALTH
10
HP
180
Upholding the Good
POWERS
Digging: 15, Dimensional Travel: 18 (Power linked to Flight, Travel Only), Flight: 40, Heat Vision: 30, Invulnerability: 48, Microscopic Vision: 11, Sealed Systems: 20, Shockwave: 10, Super Breath: 20 (Super Cold), Superspeed: 25, Systemic Antidote: 15, Telescopic Vision: 15, Thermal Vision: 15, Time Travel: 25, X-Ray Vision: 20
SKILLS
Charisma: 16, Detective: 5, Gadgetry: 8
ADVANTAGES
Area Knowledge (Smallville, Metropolis), Artist (Journalist, Editor), Free Access (Regular), Iron Nerves, Leadership, Lightning Reflexes, Longevity, Popularity, Security Clearance (Low- Superman is not in the military, but his unprecedented level of popularity allows him some access), Sharp Eye
CONNECTIONS
High- JSA, All Star Squadron, Daily Star, Metropolis PD, Metropolis Prison, United Nations, White House, Power Girl
Low- Superhero community, Infinity Inc, Street
DRAWBACKS
Altered Biology (Near Human), Arch Enemies (Alexi Luthor, Ultra Humanite), Married (Lois Kent), Secret Identity
VULNERABILITIES
Loss Vulnerability (Out of yellow sunlight, Superman loses his powers and his Physical Attributes drop to 4 each)
Attack Vulnerability (-4 CS vs. magic; Conversely, when attacking mystical beings or magical defenses, Superman suffers a +4 CS to all OV/RV)
Misc.: Gravity attacks subtract their RAPs from all of Superman’s physical Attributes and Powers, but cannot reduce them to 0
Kryptonite Vulnerabilities:
GREEN- This is the typical kryptonite. It usually only affects Superman when he has his powers. Within 2 APs it causes great pain that can be overcome but not ignored. It causes a Loss Vulnerability within 1 AP. Physical Attributes and all powers are reduced to 1 and Superman suffers agonizing pain so great that he cannot even stand. He may make a action check with his DEX/STR of 1/1 against an OV/RV of 2 to drag himself out of the way or to throw the rock out of distance. HPs cannot be spent on this attempt. It also causes a Fatal Vulnerability within 1 AP. It causes 1 AP of killing damage each phase, killing Superman in 6 APs of time. Luckily, he can still spend HPs to heal damage, staving off death.
EQUIPMENT
UNIFORM [Skin Armor: 10, Advantage: Indestructible Costume, Superman’s cape also has Stretching: 4]



World's Finest
The rest of this entry is me adding my oh, so valuable two cents' worth to the on-line glut of movie reviews and comic criticisms. Feel free to ignore it. I just like the sound of my own typing.

Movie Review: I saw Birds of Prey and the Emancipation of One Harley Quinn on Friday. While it has a terrible name, it is actually very enjoyable. It should have been named Harley Quinn, because it is very definitely her movie and not the Birds'. I loved the cast, though I didn't like some of the visual choices with them- the edgy nose-ringed Black Canary and the chubby Cassandra Cain come to mind. Still, that doesn't hurt the movie. This movie is a far better movie than Suicide Squad or Captain Marvel, which are the movies it will no doubt be compared to. It's violent and has some language, but honestly, it should have been rated PG-13, for those of you who have kids and may be concerned. I highly recommend it.

Quickie Retro Reviews: 
Justice League- I think I'm the only person in America who thinks this was DC's best effort since the Dark Knight Returns. It wasn't as good as it should have been, but it wasn't bad at all.

Suicide Squad- I was surprised at how enjoyable this movie actually was. It was stupid, but it was fun. Will Smith's best role in way too long, but of course, Margot Robbie steals the movie. She obviously loves playing Harley and it shows. As for Jared Leto... What the heck were they thinking? He stunk as the Joker. Fortunately, he's barely there. Alfre Woodward as Amanda Waller was inspired!

Wonder Woman- Yes, more like this, DC. This was pretty good. Predictable, but good. I'm looking forward to 1984, Kristen Wiig's inevitable horrible performance notwithstanding.

Shazam- AWESOME! I loved every minute of it. DC's best so far.

Aquaman- Shockingly mediocre. I guess it would have been better if it had ever decided whether it wanted to be campy, funny, campy, epic, campy, or exciting. Or campy. Seriously, I kept waiting for Adam West to show up.

Joker- Wow. Joaquin Phoenix may be a weirdo and a moron, but he's great in this role. And DeNiro is so disgusting in his part that I cheered when he got what he deserved. A great movie, but not for kids. 

Between Birds of Prey, Shazam, Wonder Woman, and Joker, I had high hopes for DC movies. Then they cast a sparkly vampire without a personality as Batman and put guns on his chest. Go home WB, you're drunk.


Marvel's movies, after being so great for so long, are now embracing the opposite trend:
Thor Ragnarok: So Thor is Deadpool now? Ugh. This was painful to watch. A promising franchise turned into a one-off joke.

Black Panther- Wildly overrated, self-important, and relying too much on terrible CGI, but an exceptionally strong cast makes it an okay watch. 

Avengers Infinity War and Endgame- I loved Infinity War. I hated Endgame. The Avengers franchise ends with a resounding whimper.

Deadpool 2- Hilarious, but I'm thinking if they keep on with the Deadpool movies, they are going to ruin what they have going on. Too much of a good thing, and all that.

Spider-Man Homecoming- It's okay, I guess, but I still wish Sony had just left Sam Raimi in charge. I haven't seen the sequel and probably won't. Tom Holland and Michael Keaton are the only good things in this movie, and they're so good you almost like it. Then that vapid little Zendaya idiot shows back up on the screen and all the life is sucked out of the movie by the black hole of her anti-charisma (INFL -1 or Anti-Shouting at 18 APs?). I'd say she's the worst actress I've seen in one of these movies, but, alas, it isn't so. 

Captain Marvel- Not only a horrible movie for my favorite female hero at Marvel, Carol Danvers.  Not merely a bad entry into the Marvel movie universe. Not just the worst movie I saw last year. But. One. Of. The. Worst. Movies. I. Have. Ever. Seen. Only Josh Trank's Fantastic Four, Batman v. Superman, and Batman and Robin can hold a flaming turd to this one. Brie Larson, formerly an actress I liked a lot, turns in the least charismatic performance with the least amount of on-screen chemistry with her entire supporting cast that I have ever seen in a professional effort. That combined with the transformation of Carol Danvers into Super Mary Sue and Nick Fury transformed into her Gay Best Friend is almost as entertaining as watching your favorite pet die of cancer. This movie ruined the entire Marvel cinematic universe for me. I doubt I'll ever see another in the franchise... 
         
Though Black Widow looks promising...

Soapbox. I only found out in the process of this post that there was a newer Earth 2, apparently with former president Obama as Superman. I cannot overstate how insulting this is. I think marrying politics to comics and entertainment is repulsive, despite the fact that is all the rage these days. It is particularly inappropriate for superheroes. Heroes represent what is best in all of us, in our society and culture as a whole. Superheroes are America's hero myths. They inspire hope and celebrate law and order, freedom and justice. They should never be used to pander to political agendas-- especially since politicians are universally divisive and, almost by definition these days, represent everything that is wrong and worst in our society and culture. Soapbox away.