“Man of Steel” photo analysis: Get to know the characters who aren’t Superman

“Man of Steel” photo analysis: Get to know the characters who aren’t Superman (photo)

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In the latest batch of photos from the set of “Man of Steel,” Zack Snyder’s upcoming reboot of the Superman movie franchise, we not only get another look at star Henry Cavill in the old cape and tights, we also get our first look at some of the villains he’ll be facing off against in the 2013 film.

As we reported earlier, the new photos provide our first look at actress Antje Traue in costume as the Kryptonian villain Faora, as well as an unidentified actor in a motion-capture suit. The pair are clearly getting place for a showdown with Superman, but for many people following developments on the film, there’s still one big question: Who the heck are they?

Well, don’t worry if you’re not entirely sure who the pair of villains are that appear in these photos — you’re not alone. While the identity of the actor in the motion-capture suit is uncertain at this point, Faora herself isn’t exactly a household name in the comics world, either.

faora.jpgIn the DC Comics universe, there have been several iterations of characters named Faora. The first and possibly best-known version of the character was introduced in a 1977 issue of Action Comics, and was man-hating Kryptonian villain sentenced to spend 300 years in the Phantom Zone for torturing and murdering male inmates at a concentration camp near her home. A frequent collaborator with General Zod (the main villain of “Man of Steel,” played by Michael Shannon), Faora was also a master of Horo-Kanu, a Kryptonian martial art that made her an extremely formidable opponent for Superman.

Over the years, several lesser-known versions of the character debuted in Superman’s comic-book adventures, including several alternate-world versions who were man-hating killers, too.

Surprisingly, Faora’s history on the screen is a bit more notable.

In the Christopher Reeve-starring “Superman” and “Superman II,” the character of Ursa was based on Faora, and much like her comics counterpart, she served as the right-hand woman to General Zod. Faora also appeared in several arcs of the long-running television series “Smallville,” and though she began in a similar partnership with Zod, her character departed the series fighting alongside Clark Kent.

Thus far, little is known about the “Man of Steel” version of Faora, though the latest photos seem to indicate she’ll follow the fashion sense of her “Superman” and “Superman II” predecessor, played by Sarah Douglas. Apparently, bad guys (and girls) on Krypton wear black, too.

As for our mystery motion-capture man, there’s not much we can surmise from the new photos, though there is one minor element that could be cause for speculation.

Take a good look at the photos and you’ll notice a long bar sticking out of the top of the actor’s back and rising a few feet into the air. Could this be an indication of the character’s height once the digital effects are rendered? Given the alien nature of Superman, Faora, and Zod, it’s within the realm of possibility that we could be seeing a few other additions to the live-action Superman movie universe — so why not make ’em taller than your average human (or Kryptonian)?

Start the speculation now, folks — there’s a lot of time between now and June 2013.

What do you think of the “Man of Steel” villains? Chime in below or on Facebook or Twitter.

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Bro and Tell

BFFs And Night Court For Sports

Bromance and Comeuppance On Two New Comedy Crib Series

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“Silicon Valley meets Girls meets black male educators with lots of unrealized potential.”

That’s how Carl Foreman Jr. and Anthony Gaskins categorize their new series Frank and Lamar which joins Joe Schiappa’s Sport Court in the latest wave of new series available now on IFC’s Comedy Crib. To better acquaint you with the newbies, we went right to the creators for their candid POVs. And they did not disappoint. Here are snippets of their interviews:

Frank and Lamar


IFC: How would you describe Frank and Lamar to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?
Carl: Best bros from college live and work together teaching at a fancy Manhattan private school, valiantly trying to transition into a more mature phase of personal and professional life while clinging to their boyish ways.

IFC: And to a friend of a friend you met in a bar?
Carl: The same way, slightly less coherent.

Anthony: I’d probably speak about it with much louder volume, due to the bar which would probably be playing the new Kendrick Lamar album. I might also include additional jokes about Carl, or unrelated political tangents.

Carl: He really delights in randomly slandering me for no reason. I get him back though. Our rapport on the page, screen, and in real life, comes out of a lot of that back and forth.

IFC: In what way is Frank and Lamar a poignant series for this moment in time?
Carl: It tells a story I feel most people aren’t familiar with, having young black males teach in a very affluent white world, while never making it expressly about that either. Then in tackling their personal lives, we see these three-dimensional guys navigate a pivotal moment in time from a perspective I feel mainstream audiences tend not to see portrayed.

Anthony: I feel like Frank and Lamar continues to push the envelope within the genre by presenting interesting and non stereotypical content about people of color. The fact that this show brought together so many talented creative people, from the cast and crew to the producers, who believe in the project, makes the work that much more intentional and truthful. I also think it’s pretty incredible that we got to employ many of our friends!

Sport Court

Sport Court gavel

IFC: How would you describe Sport Court to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?
Joe: SPORT COURT follows Judge David Linda, a circuit court judge assigned to handle an ad hoc courtroom put together to prosecute rowdy fan behavior in the basement of the Hartford Ultradome. Think an updated Night Court.

IFC: How would you describe Sport Court to drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?
Joe: Remember when you put those firecrackers down that guy’s pants at the baseball game? It’s about a judge who works in a court in the stadium that puts you in jail right then and there. I know, you actually did spend the night in jail, but imagine you went to court right that second and didn’t have to get your brother to take off work from GameStop to take you to your hearing.

IFC: Is there a method to your madness when coming up with sports fan faux pas?
Joe: I just think of the worst things that would ruin a sporting event for everyone. Peeing in the slushy machine in open view of a crowd seemed like a good one.

IFC: Honestly now, how many of the fan transgressions are things you’ve done or thought about doing?
Joe: I’ve thought about ripping out a whole row of chairs at a theater or stadium, so I would have my own private space. I like to think of that really whenever I have to sit crammed next to lots of people. Imagine the leg room!

Check out the full seasons of Frank and Lamar and Sport Court now on IFC’s Comedy Crib.

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Millennial Wisdom

Charles Speaks For Us All

Get to know Charles, the social media whiz of Brockmire.

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He may be an unlikely radio producer Brockmire, but Charles is #1 when it comes to delivering quips that tie a nice little bow on the absurdity of any given situation.

Charles also perfectly captures the jaded outlook of Millennials. Or at least Millennials as mythologized by marketers and news idiots. You know who you are.

Played superbly by Tyrel Jackson Williams, Charles’s quippy nuggets target just about any subject matter, from entry-level jobs in social media (“I plan on getting some experience here, then moving to New York to finally start my life.”) to the ramifications of fictional celebrity hookups (“Drake and Taylor Swift are dating! Albums y’all!”). But where he really nails the whole Millennial POV thing is when he comments on America’s second favorite past-time after type II diabetes: baseball.

Here are a few pearls.

On Baseball’s Lasting Cultural Relevance

“Baseball’s one of those old-timey things you don’t need anymore. Like cursive. Or email.”

On The Dramatic Value Of Double-Headers

“The only thing dumber than playing two boring-ass baseball games in one day is putting a two-hour delay between the boring-ass games.”

On Sartorial Tradition

“Is dressing badly just a thing for baseball, because that would explain his jacket.”

On Baseball, In A Nutshell

“Baseball is a f-cked up sport, and I want you to know it.”

Learn more about Charles in the behind-the-scenes video below.

And if you were born before the late ’80s and want to know what the kids think about Baseball, watch Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

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Crown Jules

Amanda Peet FTW on Brockmire

Amanda Peet brings it on Brockmire Wednesday at 10P on IFC.

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GIFS via Giphy

On Brockmire, Jules is the unexpected yin to Jim Brockmire’s yang. Which is saying a lot, because Brockmire’s yang is way out there. Played by Amanda Peet, Jules is hard-drinking, truth-spewing, baseball-loving…everything Brockmire is, and perhaps what he never expected to encounter in another human.

“We’re the same level of functional alcoholic.”

But Jules takes that commonality and transforms it into something special: a new beginning. A new beginning for failing minor league baseball team “The Frackers”, who suddenly about-face into a winning streak; and a new beginning for Brockmire, whose life gets a jumpstart when Jules lures him back to baseball. As for herself, her unexpected connection with Brockmire gives her own life a surprising and much needed goose.

“You’re a Goddamn Disaster and you’re starting To look good to me.”

This palpable dynamic adds depth and complexity to the narrative and pushes the series far beyond expected comedy. See for yourself in this behind-the-scenes video (and brace yourself for a unforgettable description of Brockmire’s genitals)…

Want more about Amanda Peet? She’s all over the place, and has even penned a recent self-reflective piece in the New York Times.

And of course you can watch the Jim-Jules relationship hysterically unfold in new episodes of Brockmire, every Wednesday at 10PM on IFC.

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