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The 411 Movies Top 5: The Top 5 Wanted Comic Properties

February 14, 2016 | Posted by Shawn S. Lealos

The 411 Movies Top 5: Hello everyone and welcome to 411 Movies Top 5 List. We take a topic each week and all the writers here on 411 wrestling will have the ability to participate and give us their Top 5 on said topic. So, onto this week’s topic…

The Top 5 Wanted Solo Comic Properties

5. JACK CROSSJack Cross only lasted four issues but it definitely made a kick ass impression (I think it sort of became a miniseries after the fact, as there were supposed to be more stories after the first four issues but DC Comics cancelled the book or creator Warren Ellis decided he didn’t want to do it anymore. Anyone out there know the true story as to why we didn’t get more Jack Cross?). The title character, Jack Cross, is a left wing anti-war activist by day, a psychopathic anti-terrorism freelance government agent by night. Cross, when pressed into service, would do anything to get a confession or, really, get the bad guy, and I mean anything (limbs are getting severed if the guy refuses to talk). Cross is a messed up dude, and a messed up show is exactly what the comic book TV show world always needs. The book also had a dark sense of humor that would work wonderfully on TV. Jack Cross will likely never happen as a TV show or a movie, unless DC gets desperate for material (I just don’t see that happening). I can dream, though, right?

4. PILGRIM- JUST A PILGRIMJust a Pilgrim was a post-apocalyptic western comic created by Garth Ennis and Carlos Ezquerra back in the early 2000’s. It was about a mysterious gunslinger/religious fanatic named Pilgrim who helps a bunch of people look for water (something happened to the sun, which then caused the Earth’s oceans to dry up, which then caused governments and nations to collapse, etc.). Weird beard psycho pirates are after the survivors. Pilgrim fights the pirates and keeps the survivors safe. Just a Pilgrim would make for a great cable show, mostly because of the violence and general bleak nastiness of the story (I highly doubt a broadcast network would do a show where the lead character is eventually revealed to be a recovering cannibal. The religious overtones of the story would likely also cause a network to say “no” because the fanatics would complain). The show would likely cost a small fortune to produce, but I think it would be worth doing just to see Pilgrim as a flesh and blood creation. And since there were only two mini-series, a successful Just a Pilgrim would lead to more stories. The book never should have ended.

3. RESURECTION MANResurrection Man was a DC Comics comic book that lasted about two years back in the late 1990’s and then was resurrected (ha!) as part of the New 52 thing. I haven’t read the newer series yet (I’m seriously behind in my comic book reading) but the late 1990’s series was a must read. It was about a guy, a lawyer named Mitch Shelley, who was injected with a weird beard nanotechnology that erased his memory and allowed him to be “resurrected” in the event he died. Basically, what happened was some villain would attack and kill Shelley and then, after a few seconds, Shelley would “come back” with a “new” super power, and he would have that new super power until he was killed again. And Shelley went through this hooey while traveling America trying to figure out who the hell he was. So there’s the big hook. It’s a road show with a new villain of the week trying to take out Shelley, and Shelley getting a new power and new look in each episode. Of course, since “serial storytelling” is the new thing in cable/streaming shows the show could figure out how to have Shelley with a specific superpower for a few episodes, but I think it would work better as a “power-of-the-week” type deal. It would be funnier, quirkier, force the writers to come up with cool new stuff with every episode. Anyway, I think Shelley would make for a great TV show, so, man, someone get on this. The world needs it.

2. SAVAGE DRAGON – Erik Larsen’s Savage Dragon was adapted into a kids cartoon back in the 1990’s (I think it aired on the USA network), which makes sense since the main character, a big ass green skinned humanoid with a fin on his head, would have been difficult to do as a live action TV show or movie without a substantial budget. Now, with CGI an easier prospect for movie and TV makers, and with Hellboy working as a man-in-suit with Ron Perlman, I think it’s time that this nifty comic book property gets a biggish budget live action production. There are plenty of cool, weird characters and gory comic book violence to make the show visually interesting, and the comic is generally positive and funny enough to be different from the rest of the comic book adaptations out there (Savage Dragon, even when it got nasty, it didn’t get that nasty and always seemed like the whole enterprise was meant to be nothing more than fun). I think this could work and I think people would get behind it if done right and well. Maybe it will happen one day?

1. CAL MCDONALD- CRIMINAL MACABRECriminal Macabre, created by Steve Niles, is the kind of property that is ripe for some sort of TV or cinematic adaptation. It features a private detective with serious issues (he’s a drunk, has a major drug problem) who battles monsters, vampires, demons, and other assorted supernatural evil beings. His best friend is a ghoul named Mo’Lock. It sort of sounds like Constantine, but it’s a little more visceral and profane. And violent. Holy crap is Cal McDonald violent. And since Criminal Macabre appears every so often via Dark Horse Comics, the property would work well in a sort of limited series capacity. I’m shocked that this hasn’t already been adapted at least once. It has everything and is easy to understand. I can’t wait for the next comic series.

Shawn S. Lealos
5. Blue Beetle – I am talking about Jaime Reyes, the Latino teenager who was the third Blue Beetle. For one thing, this would give the world a great Latino superhero and that is a good thing. For another thing, this could also include Booster Gold maybe, which would also be cool (even though not the same as Ted Kord and Booster Gold), but still, Jaime Reyes was one of the best changes that DC made to their main characters in recent years.

4. Nightwing – I love Dick Grayson as a character. I thought he was the best Batman in years when Bruce Wayne “died” and have always liked him as Nightwing. I think that a Nightwing character could really add some depth to the world of Batman and bring some color to the otherwise gloomy world that has existed since Chris Nolan made his movies.

3. American Vampire – I honestly don’t care if this is a TV show or a movie, but American Vampire would be awesome. This is basically a period piece about a woman who is turned into a vampire by Skinner Sweet, a vampire who has lived through so much that he is basically different than all the new vampires that exist in the world of American business. Skinner Sweet is awesome and this would be a great movie.

2. Ex Machina – This is a great story by Brian K. Vaughan about a guy who was a superhero, but has since retired to make a real difference in the world of politics after he saves New York City from 9-11. The problem is that he can’t make the changes he wants because – politics – and there is someone out there who wants to bring him down. It would be an awesome network (or AMC) television show that has politics and geek culture all bundled into one.

1. Moon Knight – Moon Knight needs to come to Netflix and it needs to come soon. Honestly, Moon Knight is more than just a Batman knock-off and would be awesome as a Netflix series in the vein of Daredevil. Basically, for those who don’t know, Moon Knight is kind of psycho. He gets his powers from a Moon God that only he can see and hear, plus he has different personas (a rich guy, a cab driver, a former mercenary, and Moon Knight) and he sometimes doesn’t know who he really is. His supporting cast is awesome (Frenchie!) and he would be an amazing Netflix series. Seriously. Do it now.


List your Top Five for this week’s topic in the comment section using the following format:

5. CHOICE: Explanation
4. CHOICE: Explanation
3. CHOICE: Explanation
2. CHOICE: Explanation
1. CHOICE: Explanation