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Superhero Showdown, Day 2: Batman! Jean Grey! Wonder Woman! Black Panther! Deadpool? Vote now to decide the Greatest Superhero of All Time!

Who is the greatest superhero of all time? This month, we’re going to settle the age-old debate once and for all! Here at PopWatch, we’re taking 32 seeded contestants and pitting them against each other in a superpowered bracket game. Everything is on the table: The heroes’ costumes, their superpowers, the number of actual great stories they inspired. To level the playing field, we’ve separated the heroes into nine different groups for the first round of match-ups. Today, we’re featuring four essential face-offs: Batman vs. Rorschach; Storm vs. Jean Grey; Wonder Woman vs. Black Panther; and Deadpool vs. The Tick.

Scroll down to vote in today’s polls, and be sure to click here to download the printable image of the complete Superhero Showdown bracket. Day Two polls will close in exactly 48 hours, at 3:00 ET on August 9. And you still have one day left to vote in the Day One match-ups: Superman vs. Silver Surfer; Spawn vs. Captain Marvel; Spider-Man vs. Daredevil; and The Invisible Woman vs. Metamorpho.

And check out our handy video introduction to all this superhero madness here. READ FULL STORY

Superhero Showdown Introduction: An expert and a non-expert talk about EW's bracket showdown to decide the Greatest Superhero Ever

Today, EW.com is proud to kick off our Superhero Showdown, bracket game which will allow us to scientifically determine via online reader polls which comic book hero is the greatest superhero ever. The 32 contestants in the bracket mix together well-known media icons with beloved characters from outside the mainstream. That mixture is intentional. Comic book heroes belong to the world now more than ever. (A trio of movies starring comic book characters grossed literal billions of dollars this summer.) Mega-geeks and casual fans are both welcome. To learn more about the Superhero Showdown, watch the introductory video below. Be sure to check out our complete printable bracket, and vote in the first four Day One match-ups here. READ FULL STORY

Superhero Showdown, Day 1: Superman! Spider-Man! Daredevil! Start voting now to decide the Greatest Superhero of All Time!

Who is the greatest superhero of all time? This month, we’re going to settle the age-old debate once and for all! Here at PopWatch, we’re taking 32 seeded contestants and pitting them against each other in a superpowered bracket game. Everything is on the table: The heroes’ costumes, their superpowers, the number of actual great stories they inspired. To level the playing field, we’ve separated the heroes into nine different groups for the first round of match-ups. Today, we’re featuring four incredible face-offs: Superman vs. Silver Surfer; Spawn vs. Captain Marvel; Spider-Man vs. Daredevil; and The Invisible Woman vs. Metamorpho.

Scroll down to vote in today’s polls, and be sure to click here to download the printable image of the complete Superhero Showdown bracket. Day One polls will close in exactly 48 hours, at 4:25 ET on August 8.

And check out our handy video introduction to all this superhero madness here.
READ FULL STORY

Bryan Singer confirms title of 'X-Men: First Class' sequel, and it's a doozy

X-Men: First Class was the lowest-grossing film in the mutant franchise since the original X-Men. But $350 million is nothing to sniff at, and stars Jennifer Lawrence and Michael Fassbender have both become omnipresent in the year since First Class opened, so it wasn’t too surprising when Fox announced a July 2014 release date for a First Class follow-up. And there are plenty of reasons to be optimistic about the prequel-sequel. Director Matthew Vaughn gave the movie a distinctive retro flair, replete with Roger Moore-era Bondian set design and a great villainous turn by Kevin Bacon, to say nothing of the great frenemy tension between James McAvoy and Fassbender. And X-Men producer Bryan Singer has just given an interview which indicates that plans for the next X movie are very ambitious indeed. In a video sitdown with IGN, Singer says that the movie — currently being written, and set to start shooting “in a few months” — will be called Days of Future Past, which is also the title of one of the most memorable X-Men story arcs ever. READ FULL STORY

Doctor Who is playing the villain in 'Thor 2,' and that villain is...

Christopher Eccleston already has infinite geek cred thanks to his shortlived-but-memorable role as The Doctor on the 2005 comeback season of Doctor Who. Since then, he’s popped up on television (he played an invisible man back when Heroes was good) and in movies (as the baddie in the unfortunate G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra.) But now he’s bought a ticket on the Marvel Express, toot-tooot! As originally reported by Deadline, Eccleston is officially joining next year’s Asgardian sequel Thor: The Dark World. And as Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige hinted back in May, Eccleston will be playing a new villain drawn from Thor‘s comic book mythology: Malekith the Accursed. READ FULL STORY

Superhero Bracket Showdown: Who is the Greatest Superhero of All Time?

There was a time when superheroes were not very popular. They were not grossing $1 billion at the worldwide box office. They were not inspiring Pulitzer Prize-winning novels. They were not getting attention for their sexual orientation. In the late ’90s, following the catastrophic burst of the comic book bubble, the whole industry that created superheroes seemed to be flailing towards extinction.

But in the last decade, costumed crimefighters haven’t just become popular again. They have colonized the mainstream. Once pure geek fodder, the tropes of superherodom — the origin story, the superpowers, the costume(s), the various conflicting interpretations — have all entered into the average citizen’s lexicon. Which means that now is the perfect time to throw all our favorite superheroes into the ring for an epic cage match and try to answer a decades-old question: Who is the greatest superhero… of all time?

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Batman. Bane. Catwoman. That ending! Time to talk about 'The Dark Knight Rises' -- but only if you've seen it.

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“Don’t be afraid.” Those were the dying words of Thomas Wayne, said to his traumatized young son after being shot behind a theater by a thug named Joe Chill. The scene in Batman Begins resonates anew with eerie irony — and hopefully, a little inspiration — one day after the opening of The Dark Knight Rises and the tragedy in Aurora. Despite the terror felt nationwide following the violence in Colorado, and even in spite of it, moviegoers packed into multiplexes yesterday to watch the conclusion of Christopher Nolan’s trilogy of Batman movies. And now, you have questions, opinions, quibbles, praises, and many other things to say about this heavy superhero spectacular – particularly the way it ended.

So let’s talk about it. Fearlessly.

And with a massive amount of detail… which is to say, SPOILER ALERT!

Seriously: If you have not yet seen Rises, STOP READING NOW. Because we’re not holding back on anything, beginning with…  READ FULL STORY

It's all part of the (city) plan -- See Gotham mapped out

GOTHAM-CITY-MAP

Within the Batman universe and especially in Christopher Nolan’s interpretation, Gotham City is a character all of its own. Nolan’s trilogy was shot in a variety of locations, with Chicago, Pittsburgh, L.A. and New York, among others, combining to create the ultimate comic book locale, but what exactly does that look like?

The Dark Knight Manual (Insight Editions) illustrates a comprehensive view of the city’s exact layout and while various versions of the map have been online since 2008, this one is the clearest. But where is Wayne Manor or the theater and Crime Alley where Bruce Wayne’s parents met their untimely demise? Take a look at a bigger version of the map below.

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COMIC-CON: HULK VS. HALL H!

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EVENTUALLY, THE TWO OF US HAD TO DO BATTLE.

HALL H IS COMIC-CON’S MASSIVE CONVENTION ROOM THAT SEATS APPROXIMATELY 6,500 PEOPLE. IT IS WHERE THEY HOLD ALL THE BIGGEST PANELS FOR THE HIGH-PROFILE MOVIES AND PRESENT THEIR FOOTAGE TO THRONGS OF SCREAMING FANS… AT LEAST IN THEORY. BECAUSE THE TRUTH IS THAT SO OFTEN THERE ARE A GOOD DEAL OF PEOPLE IN HALL H WHO ARE JUST THERE FOR SOME OTHER PANEL.

WHY DOES THAT HAPPEN? BECAUSE THE SHEER LOGISTICS OF HALL H DICTATE THAT ONE MUST REALLY COMMIT TO ARRIVING WAY BEFORE THE PANEL THEY ACTUALLY WANT TO SEE. THUS, THE POLITICS OF WHAT PANEL GOES BEFORE WHAT CAN SERIOUSLY AFFECT HOW ONE’S PANEL MAY GO.  FOR INSTANCE, AFTER THE FIRST YEAR OF TWILIGHT MANIA, THE CONVENTION DISCOVERED THAT THESE UBER-COMMITTED FANS WOULD LINE UP SO EARLY FOR THE PANELS THAT THEY WOULD DOMINATE THE LANDSCAPE. NOT ONLY THAT BUT THEY WERE SO COMPLETELY DISINTERESTED IN ALMOST ANY OTHER PROPERTY THAT IT MADE THINGS PRETTY MUCH HORRIBLE FOR ANYONE ELSE. (THIS ISN’T A SWIPE AT TWILIGHT MIND YOU, JUST THE RAMIFICATIONS OF THEIR FANS’ COMMITMENT). THE ONLY WAY TO MAKE IT WORK IS HAVE THE ANNUAL TWILIGHT PANEL OPEN HALL H ON THE FIRST DAY OF COMIC-CON AND THAT HAS NOW BECOME THE TRADITION (ALONG WITH PEOPLE CAMPING OUT FOR WEEKS BEFOREHAND). THE OTHER THING THEY HAVE LEARNED IS TO GROUP ALL THE BIGGEST, MOST MAINSTREAM PANELS ON SATURDAY, WHICH IS THE ALSO THE MOST HIGHLY ATTENDED DAY OF THE CON.

AND WITH SO MANY HIGH-PROFILE FILMS THERE ON SATURDAY THERE WAS NO BETTER DAY FOR HULK TO SPEND THE ENTIRE DAY IN HALL H. READ FULL STORY

Thomas Jane made a new 'Punisher' short film for Comic-Con -- watch it now!

The kindest thing you can say about Thomas Jane’s 2004 movie The Punisher is that it’s the best Punisher movie by default, since the character also inspired a terrible 1989 film starring Dolph Lundgren and a terrible, terrible, terrible 2008 film starring Ray Stevenson. But the experience of making the movie apparently stuck with Jane. At San Diego Comic-Con this past weekend, Jane debuted an expensive-looking 10-minute short film about a character who is clearly the Punisher, although the film — titled “Dirty Laundry” — is carefully constructed to avoid any potential lawsuits. The short also features an appearance by Ron Perlman. Fair warning: It’s extremely violent. But as directed by Phil Joanou (Gridiron Gang), it’s also pretty fun.
READ FULL STORY

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