Tag Archives: superman

Nerds United Episode 115: Friday Night Thoughts on Aquaman and Marvel

Hey there! Happy Friday night/Saturday morning. Greg and Mike got together and spent a little time on Facebook as well as some audio-only content. We cover Aquaman and the DC Cinematic Universe, as well as the DC CW crossover event this past week titled Elseworlds.

Also, since we last got together, Marvel released trailers for Captain Marvel and Avengers: Endgame.

Plus we have a special treat from Greg’s early terrestrial radio days, and lots of love for Tom and Jim’s Top 5.

Don’t forget to get your shirts and merch from the shop! Your support is greatly appreciated, and if you did order a shirt, share your merch on social media so we can give you props!

Nerds United Episode 100: We March On

Hey everyone and thank you for taking the time to click the link, open the description in your podcast app, or however you came across reading these words.


As many of you know, for this episode, I was really wanting to have Kevin Smith as my guest. But that ended up not happening. I’ll try him again at a different time. I know he has plenty of irons in various fires.

So for this episode, I’m just getting you caught up on some of what I have been and will be reading. I’ve told my people at Twilight Comics (in Swansea, IL) that I’m going to convert from single issues to trade paperbacks, and to start ordering accordingly for me. The staff there is always thinking of new ways to get people in the doors, and Tuesday night’s “wedding celebration” of Batman and Catwoman was no different. I wasn’t there, but my son had some leftover cake on Wednesday.

So here’s a short list of some books I recommend: Superman/Batman: Finest Worlds, Kwame Hightower and the Man With No Name, and for kicks, anytime you see a Hellboy TPB on your store’s shelves, just buy it and read it.

That’s all for now. You’re great. I thank you for 5+ years of support and listenership and I promise that Episode 200 will be before 2023.

Positive Cynicism Ep 14: Feminism – Expert Opinions

On this week’s episode, host @chadsmart is joined by Nerds United host Greg Mehochko and My 1-2-3 Cents host Kevin Hunsperger to discuss the rise of feminism in society.

The first half of the show focuses on the DC cinematic universe and whether Wonder Woman is actually a good movie or if it is given more leeway due to being the first female driven superhero movie.

Second half discussion looks at the online outrage of WWE’s recent first ever women’s Money in the Bank match.

Nerds United Episode 77: Game of Thrones, Castlevania, and Acting

All right kids, so here’s the new episode. It’s another road recording. And admittedly, it’s not nearly as thorough and complete as I’d like. But…it is what it is.

So earlier in the day, we received a trailer for Season 7 of HBO’s Game of Thrones. So I’m excited about that.

We also received a teaser trailer for a new project headed to Netflix later this year. And though I shared a different version on Facebook earlier in the day, well, I like this one more.

Last but certainly not least, is a response to this article from ComicBook.com, on what had to be a slow news day: The Fifteen Most DESPISED Comic Book Movie Performances.

I take great issue with this, based just on the first two actors listed. But the point is this:

More blame should be levied on the director/producer than the actor portraying the role. And who are you as the author of that article to speak for everyone when calling those performances the most despised? Maybe they were more disappointing to you than other performances. But that’s more your fault based on your expectations of A abd receiving B.

But I digress. There’s more for me to get into on that subject, but that is – I think – more of a blog post when I have the time to disagree with most of the author’s points.

Enjoy the show and we’ll catch you again soon.

Fresh Content Day 2: Doctor! Doctor! Gimme the News!

What is my obsession with doctors? If you go back about eighteen months, you’ll remember that I already wrote about Doctor Strange and the topic of today’s post, Doctor Fate.

Maybe it’s because I’m getting older. Maybe it’s because I haven’t been feeling “great” lately. But I finally made an appointment to see a doctor. Granted, I can’t get in to see him until April 4. And when I was calling to make the appointment, I was taking the approach of “well, I’m older. I need to be seeing a physician regularly.” The lady on the other end of the line was surprised when I said I hadn’t seen a doctor regularly since I was still seeing a pediatrician. So figure…half of my life I haven’t been going to a doctor with any regularity. But more like on an “as needed” basis.

Well, I’m 34, and that’s not going to fly anymore.

So I have doctors on the brain.

Yesterday (late), you got the Doctor Strange movie post. It was a brief overview of a truly enjoyable movie-watching experience.

Today, I want to talk a little bit more about Doctor Fate, and why he might be the most powerful character in the DC Universe.

Think about it. When you think of “powerful characters” on the DC side, you typically think of the Last Son of Krypton. And you know his weaknesses…the glowing green rock that doesn’t glow when not exposed to a Kryptonian, a red sun, and magic. Or as SupeFan98 wrote on ComicVine (HEY! It’s better than Wikipedia):

While not so much an actual weakness, Superman’s invulnerability offers no protection against magic. The explanation for this is simple; Superman’s powers, extraordinary as they are, are the result of natural phenomenon, not supernatural. As a result, spells cast on Superman affect him the same as they would anyone else.

That’s a sizable weakness, when there are Doctor Fate’s and John Constantine’s out there. The constant Marvel/DC battle line is drawn between Superman and the Hulk, because they both have ridiculous strength and they can both leap incredibly long distances.

And we’ll never know the outcome of *THAT* fight. Just like we will never see Superman and Doctor Fate do battle.

But since Doctor Fate also shares traits like super-strength, flight, and invulnerability, but also has telekinesis, telepathy, and of course, spellbinding. It’s an outlandish thing to say, but since Fate’s powers seem to align with Superman’s weaknesses, it doesn’t seem out of the realm of possibility.

And this all came to mind from the announcement I saw that Doctor Fate was coming to Injustice 2…so you get a fun video of that, too.

So that’s that. Tomorrow – I’m hoping to talk about something that’s not Doctor-related. But as for tonight, I’m going to record a new Five Heart Podcast and probably watch Doctor Strange again.

And check out the on-going title Doctor Fate, which started in 2015. I’m currently reading it.

Dedicated to Dads

Jonathon Kent.

Norman Osborn.

Reed Richards.

Henry Allen.

Thomas Wayne.

Uncle Ben Parker.

Darth Vader.


Some of the names listed above are great dads in comics and geek culture. Some are not great fathers. Others left lasting impressions on the children in their care in lives that were cut tragically short. Although, it goes without saying that without their sacrifices or untimely deaths, the heroes-to-be would not have materialized.

As I celebrate my first Father’s Day this year, I reflect more on the man I call “dad,” but it is fun to look at some of these genre dads and how they shaped some of the most important figures in pop culture.

I won’t go into detail on each name provided above (sorry Reed and Henry). But I did want to explore some of the father-son relationships.

From The Adventures of Superman #500 – Life After Death

The Martha’s (Wayne and Kent, respectively…also something fans had a major issue with in the final act of Batman V Superman) are touted as being so instrumental in the lives of their sons, and rightly so. But I think if you overlook the importance of Jonathon “Pa” Kent, you’re doing a disservice to the writers who gave him life and the actors who gave him breath. While I was initially thrilled about Kevin Costner’s casting, I didn’t care for the writing of Pa Kent in Man of Steel. But every other likeness has been far truer to the character (looking at you, John Schnieder) and enriched the mythos of Jonathon Kent as a morally strong man who believes his son is destined for great things. When Superman stood for “Truth, Justice, and the American Way,” you could hear those words being said by Pa Kent into a young Clark. “Live your life better than we have. Be better.” It’s why Superman is beloved as a figure in his fictional world and how he has stood the test of time as one of the most popular characters in culture for the last 77 years.

Norman Osborn and Uncle Ben Parker. The environments they create for their “children” makes all the difference when we see how Harry Osborn differs from Peter Parker. Even though Ben is Peter’s uncle, he serves as Pete’s guardian, and his final words will forever be linked to greatness, memed before memes were memes. “With great power comes great responsibility.” Six words that will echo into eternity. And because of the love and support Ben gave to young Peter, Peter, even though he wasn’t particularly popular, had the confidence to forge for himself a heroic life. Harry, poisoned by his father’s demons, would eventually don the glider as well.

Darth Vader’s revelation of his fatherhood to Luke Skywalker in Empire Strikes Back could go down in history as one of the biggest “OMG” moments in cinema history. And while their relationship was fleshed out a bit more in Return of the Jedi, it was Luke who sensed the good in Anakin and was able to bring him back from the Dark Side, as Vader tosses Emperor Palpatine into the pit, and thus bringing balance to the Force. I mean, you know all that already. Vader – not the best dad. But did get better.

One of the most interesting father-son relationships in comics to me has always been Thomas and Bruce Wayne. Tale as old as time – parents murdered in Crime Alley in front of young son. Son grows up to become Batman, vowing to clean up Gotham City. It was the loss he experienced that, in my opinion, made him want to ensure no other child of Gotham felt the pain he felt. What’s interesting is that in DC’s Flashpoint (Flashpoint Paradox, if you want the animated version), we see that Batman is Thomas Wayne, taking out his pain and anger in a much more brutal way (including guns). Also, in the Flashpoint story, Martha Wayne becomes the Joker, but who cares about that. Watch the end of the Flashpoint Paradox, after Barry runs back in time and corrects the timeline, and see the impact a father can have on a son.

You have an adult Bruce receiving a letter from his deceased father, a father who is writing a letter to his deceased son. And the man who walks runs between both worlds.

Me and the Old Man, when we were both much younger.
Me and the Old Man, when we were both much younger.

I’m grateful for my father. I’m thrilled I get to spend some time with him today and go golfing. I know many don’t have that opportunity. And my wife gets to spend some time with her dad. And before and after the golfing, I get to spend time with my son.

He’s almost six months old. We have a lot of time ahead of us, and I don’t want any of it to go to waste. If you’re wondering why I haven’t had a new episode of the podcast in almost two months…well, my boy’s getting bigger. He’s making sounds and sitting up and smiling and so happy. And I get to be here for all of that. Please don’t begrudge me for being away. I’m also in the process of moving.

But I promise I will be back. I am working on guests right now. I have some in mind, and need to reach out to a few more. And I do have thoughts I want to share. Kevin over at My 1-2-3 Cents blogs every day, runs every day, has a new episode of My 1-2-3 Cents the Podcast every week, and has three kids. (Also, Kevin told me his blog entries are between 300-500 words, and this is almost 1,000. I must learn to condense). So there’s some hope for me. I’ll find my groove again.

In the meantime, I get to be a DAD.


Happy Father’s Day to all the dads out there!

Nerds United Episode 62: BvS Dawn of Something New

Per usual, I took in the new comic book character movie on the early night, saving money and minimizing headache.


Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.

It didn’t disappoint me. Okay, I admit that I stuck around hoping that there would be a post-credit scene. There’s not. I’ve typically gone against the grain in the realm of agreeing with “court of public opinion” ie Internet film critics. Rotten Tomatoes is pretty useless to me. And from Ben Affleck’s own mouth (paraphrasing), they didn’t make the movie for critics. They made it for fans. As a fan, I have zero problem with this.

The Man of Steel had a lot to answer for after Man of Steel.

At the end of the day, if you take nothing else away from this movie, you get a fantastic Wonder Woman, a glimpse at the Justice League (with lighter characters, maybe you’ll see some of that comic relief that you all love in the Marvel movies…#UNDEROOS), and another piece of framework for the very young DC Cinematic Universe.

And you get it all with a little bit of naked (yet tastefully covered) Amy Adams (oops…spoiler alert).

#ToughCallTuesday 13 – [Spoilers]

I won’t lie – #TCT13 is less about the normal Tough Call Tuesday where a present A vs B and make a selection.

This Tough Call Tuesday is essentially a rant.

spoiler2 spoiler3 spoiler4 spoiler5 spoiler6 spoiler7 spoiler1

“Only look if you want to know.” “…surfaces.”

Look, I get it. We’re on the cusp of 2016. We all carry the internet with us in our pockets.

But enough is enough.

There was a time when I would try to find out early what I was getting for Christmas. Yes, as a child, I searched closets and looked under beds for any idea of what I would receive. I learned two things from those experiences.

  1. My mom was a lot better at hiding these items from us than I could ever know (I secretly think she just stashed them at my grandparents’ house until just before Christmas).
  2. IF I was lucky enough to find something early, faking surprise and excitement was always more difficult than genuine surprise.

We are nine days away from Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens. we are two months away from Deadpool. We are about three and a half months away from Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. And we are roughly five months away from Captain America: Civil War.

Look, I get it. In an effort to further interest in these films, as well as X-Men: Apocalypse (late May, 2016), studios or actors release certain information. Typically it’s intentional by the studios and accidental when done by an actor. Or an actor gives a response without thinking, and may give away too much, aka a [Spoiler].

Look, Hollywood, you’re going to get my money. We all know you’re going to get the money of millions, if not billions, of others globally.

What I would like seen changed is less information. One of the biggest critiques to the Suicide Squad movie is that there seemed to be new “leaked footage” or footage from on the set every other day. If you want to stand on the set and watch a movie be filmed, great. But there should be some decorum about how to act when given that privilege. And one way to show your gratitude for the opportunity to watch a movie be made is to help keep what is being done in front of you a secret.

Now these examples listed about do give people a choice on if they want to participate in having details of an upcoming movie spoiled for them. “Only click if you want to know.” I choose to not know. And I hid many of these posts. Some titles do not give newsfeed scrollers that option, or a “vague” title gets paired with a picture that gives you the answer.

I will be in the theater Thursday, December 17 at 7pm to watch The Force Awakens. The speed with which I watch the 2016 movies will very likely change after my child is born. I may not make it to an opening night showing of Batman v Superman or Captain America: Civil War. Things happen, and I will have to work extra hard to not have movies spoiled for me.

But those movies will have been released, so I expect a friend or someone to say “OMG I can’t believe _______.” And I will try to cut them off and say “whoa, I haven’t had a chance to see that yet.”

That’s something that happens after a movie comes out.

It’s not something we should have to combat before a movie is in theaters.

Join the #NoSpoilers team, and be surprised for a change when you head to the theaters.

Or just jump on the comments and call me a crotchety old man. Either way.

Have a suggestion for a future #ToughCallTuesday? Drop it in the comments here on on Facebook.

And don’t forget that the Comics For Beginners vol. 2 is set for January. Ask a question, receive a prize. Leave that in the comments or email (I never get any email) nerdsunitedpodcast@gmail.com.

#ToughCallTuesday 11 – Two Titles, One Solution

Let me just start this off right away by saying this:

I finally read comics. I mean in my hand, picked up booklets of paper, and READ THEM!

Much of my reading has been on my iPad, and truth be told, I haven’t read much lately. I blame the Fall TV schedule. The Flash, Arrow, Supergirl, Gotham, The Walking Dead, Doctor Who, football…it’s crazy. And when I’m not watching tv, I’m awakening my long-dormant video game skills.

So reading was nice. I honestly need to do it more often (this moment of common sense brought to you by Staples.)

It had probably been September when I last strolled into my “local” comic book store. I use air quotes because the comic book shop I patronize with my money is just over an hour from my house. It’s why I have a pull folder. By the time I get there every eight weeks, I have missed some issues. Brian, Tim, and the crew at Twilight Comics (Swansea, IL) take care of me and my pull folder is always stuffed with my selected titles.

And it looks like I’m adding to it from here on out. This week’s #ToughCallTuesday:

side by side

Grant Morrison and Dan Mora’s “Klaus” (Boom! Studios) versus Mark Millar and Rafael Albuquerque’s “Huck” (Image Comics).

Now I don’t pretend to know much, but I thought I had a pretty reasonable handle on the Santa Claus origin story. I mean, I’ve seen Santa Claus Is Coming to Town.

The idea struck Morrison when he was working on All Star Superman. Let’s face it – worldwide, there’s only one hero bigger than Superman. As he told Comic Book Resources:

I suddenly thought, “How come no one’s told the ‘Year One’ of Santa Claus?” It seems so obvious. Basically, this is my “All-Star Santa Claus.” [Laughs] “Santa Claus Year Zero.” It’s kind of neat approaching that character as if he was the world’s greatest superhero, and we’ve never learned the origin.

The book starts out pretty standard. A traveler, a “Wild Man,” enters a Scandinavian town that he has visited before. He has furs and meats and such to trade. He has been welcomed to the town before, but is met now with armored guards. Also, when he visits the tavern, he finds that the ale is watered down. That would make me fighting mad, too!

The traveler sees children playing with a rock, and apparently that’s forbidden. Basically, the kids aren’t allowed to have any fun. Period.

A side story revolves around the rulers of the town and their seeming disinterest in keeping their citizens happy. The ruling class child is a spoiled brat who burns down the model village the people were likely forced to build him. He wants more more more.

Meantime, our traveler Klaus has been chased out of the town and returns to the woods. He and his wolf kill a deer, and then things get weird.

Look! He’s painting with the colors of the wind!

In a trance, Klaus creates a sleigh-full of toys for the children of the village. And I bet you know what happens in Issue #2.

Mark Millar is through with superheroes.

Well, let me start over. Mark Millar, in his own words, was disappointed in the ending of Man of Steel. **SPOILER ALERT** You remember that, right? That was when Superman snapped the neck of General Zod, preventing Zod from using his heat vision to make a family extra crispy?

Three people very content with Kal-El's decision.
Three people very content with Kal-El’s decision.

Mark goes on to say that (and I’m paraphrasing here) in our darkest times, we sometimes need an uplifting hero.

Both myself and artist Rafael Albuquerque have created something we haven’t seen in a very long time with our new book and that’s a lovely, sweet, Jimmy Stewart/ Tom Hanks/ Steven Spielberg kinda good guy. It’s out this week and we called this thing HUCK.

Look – I read Huck #1 and I loved it for its sheer simplicity. A simple man from a small town. To town natives, he is special. To outsiders or new neighbors, he is “slow.” But at the heart of it, he is a good man – better than we know in this world. Huck doesn’t say much in his first issue. More a man of action, his deeds range from diving to the bottom of a watery trash site to recover a lost piece of jewelry to taking out the trash for everyone in town to rescuing the 200 school girls captured by Boko Haram.

huck Capture4

Huck is just a good guy in a world with too few good people. And the folks in his town protect his secret. So what do you think happens to Huck at the end of the first issue? Of course, someone tries to cash in on the town secret. I don’t mind spoiling that because, while it is a significant event in Huck’s life, I hope it is a drawing point to potential readers.

By that I mean, if I said “Huck is a story about a small town guy who does good deeds on every level, from helping his neighbors to saving hostages in a politically charged climate. Everyone in his town knows his secret. No one ever tells.” Well that’s boring.

But if I say “Huck is a story about a small town guy who does good deeds on every level, from helping his neighbors to saving hostages in a politically charged climate. Everyone in his town knows his secret. No one ever tells…until someone does.” Well that has my interest. I want to know what happens to Huck when he has been exposed.

Now, much like some of Millar’s recent work like Wanted, Marvel’s Civil War, Kingsman, and Kick Ass, Huck has already been picked up by a studio to be adapted for the big screen. In fact, Studio 8 grabbed the rights for Huck over a month before the first issue hit store shelves.

These are two books that I really enjoyed, that is why this week’s #ToughCallTuesday is so easy.

Pick up both Klaus and Huck.

Here’s why – both series just started in November. Both series are written by two of the top names in the industry, plus the art is great. Dan Mora has done such a good job on Klaus and I’m really enjoying Rafael Albuquerque’s work on Huck.

I’m a mark for Christmas. I don’t know why, really. But a re-imagining of the Santa Claus origin story is something I didn’t even know I wanted. As for Huck, I mean, what’s not to like about this character? He is simply a good guy with abilities (unknown at this point) who just wants people to be happy.

We could all learn from these two characters. Do good. Be nice. It’s not that hard.

These two stories began with #1 in November. These are designed to be short stories, with both having six-issue runs. It’s worth it to check them out, and I think you’ll be glad that you did.

Do what I did – go to your local comic book store. Strike up a conversation. I grabbed Klaus out of curiosity. I bought Huck based on a recommendation from Brian, the owner. I’m glad he mentioned it. I’ll buy the remainder of the run.

So go talk to the friendly people at your local comic book store. You won’t regret it.

My 1-2-3 Cents Episode 46: The Man of Tomorrow


If you don’t know who Daniel Eads is you will after today’s show.  Eads is an up-and-comer on the independent wrestling scene who will no doubt find a place on the national stage in the next few years.  He’s billed as The Man of Tomorrow because of his resemblance to Superman and he’s able to do some super things in the ring.


Nerds United Episode 45: Spoiler Alert

Fish Mooney sports a new look and a younger entourage in the Gotham season 1 finale.
Fish Mooney sports a new look and a younger entourage in the Gotham season 1 finale.

Episode 45 has some spoilers in case you haven’t seen the season finales of Gotham and The Flash (and to a lesser extent, Arrow).

Promotional art for the Flash season finale.
Promotional art for the Flash season finale.

Also – it’s a great time to be a nerd. more than ten (and probably closer to 15 when it’s all said and done) “nerd” movies set for the big screen between now and the end of 2016. Take, for instance, Ant-Man.

And two things I love meet up again as I learned that one of the greatest running backs of all time for the university of Nebraska Cornhuskers will add an acting credit to his resume from Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.


Nerds United Episode 38

lego matt

Meet my longtime friend Matt. He also has a background in radio and took those talents to not one but TWO shows on the Jittery Monkey Podcast Network: GAMER and PoppedCulture.

But Matt is a busy man…a student working on his mass communications degree with a minor in creative writing. So I won’t go into much detail here, as Matt can tell his own story. But check out his Vimeo and Tumblr for some of his creativity.

Here’s his latest short film, as mentioned in the episode:

“Scrutiny” Short Film from Matthew Horst on Vimeo.

matts reads
Just a small sampling of what Matt has been reading.

Nerds United Episode 19

Well friends, we’re breaking protocol slightly. As you know, I pushed forward and posted Episode 18 (the Free Comic Book Day interviews) a week early. I did this because I had another show in mind that I felt was a bit time sensitive, as one or two (depending on where you live) movies are still in theaters with another due to drop next week.

That show I had in mind…is this show you’re about to start.

In the show, I give a brief review of “Son of Batman.” Here’s the trailer:

winter soldierI also give my thoughts (humble as they might be) on Captain America: The Winter Soldier (the movie, not the book, which I have, but have not yet read),

also The Amazing Spider-Man 2,

AND X-Men: Days of Future Past.


Of course, can’t have a comic book movie adaptation discussion this week without addressing one of the more BA images to be released in recent memory: Zack Snyder’s released image of Bat-Fleck! And you already know I like the casting. Visually, I find it stunning.

na na na na na na na na na na na na na na na na BAT-FLECK
na na na na na na na na na na na na na na na na BAT-FLECK

Lots of things to discuss from adaptations to the small screen, as I give some thoughts on Arrow, MARVEL: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, Constantine, Gotham, izombie, and more.

Then into the books we go. I read this one and LOVED IT!

with a side of “SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY!”

And I am expanding my reading, venturing more into MARVEL territory. Thanks to smaller characters like Iron Fist and this guy:

moon knight

As always, thanks for coming back and listening. Thanks for telling your friends. Thanks for helping me get the word out there.

Nerds United Episode 8


Take that drive to your family get-together and spend it listening to me. Yep – I’m asking you to make me a part of your holiday celebration (you can send me cookies, also, but I think this is easier).

In Episode 8, I spend a few minutes talking about the new Godzilla trailer (view it below), Joaquin Phoenix’s rumored involvement (may or may not be the right word) in the upcoming Batman/Superman movie; and some Christmas conversation (with myself…which isn’t much of a conversation at all).

Be safe over the holiday week-ish. I’m already in talks for Episode 9 which will be released just after the new year.

Merry Christmas. Thanks for listening.