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Defenders of The Deep | Exploring Namor and The Atlanteans as they make a splash in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever

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The panel for Marvel Studios kicked off with a bang last night during its Hall H presentation at San Diego Comic-Con. And they certainly brought their Avengers A-Game as it was packed full of announcements regarding their upcoming projects with new release dates, trailers, and exclusive sneak peeks for those attending. Here at Coastal House Media were up all night with anticipation so continue reading on as we delve into the Studio/Comic giant’s future plans.

Marvel Studios ‘Black Panther: Wakanda Forever’ capped the Hall H presentation with thunderous roars and applause. The first film quickly became one of Marvel’s most successful films to date and truly became an impact on culture and society. With Wakanda Forever’s release on November 11th, 2022 we are introduced to new important characters that ultimately set the stage for one of the most emotional chapters in MCU history. With many of the original cast reprising their roles we witness a vulnerable nation grieving as in the wake of king T’Challa’s death the Wakandans fight to protect their nation from intervening powers as we are introduced to Atlantis, the undersea nation and its king Namor the Sub-Mariner. 

Namor is an important character to be heading into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, he was first introduced into Marvel comics since 1939 and has consistently made a splash across the pages often being labelled as the first mutant. Over the decades in the comics, his full name was revealed to be Namor McKenzie, he’s the son of a human father named Leonard McKenzie and Atlantean Princess Fen. Capable of living on both land and sea, Namor’s heritage led him to acquire physical strength and durability, he can also speak to and control the ocean, and heal himself when he’s in water. Throughout his run, in the comics, Namor has teamed up and made allegiances with the Fantastic Four and even had a fling for Sue Storm. At one point he even joined the Avengers and helped found the superhero team called the Defenders. In the Aftermath of the Kree/Skrull war, Namor also became a co-founder of the Illuminati, a group dedicated to protecting the world from major threats by any means necessary. 

Image Via Marvel

In recent comics, during Avengers Vs. X-Men Namor uses his powers and attacks Wakanda, absolutely devastating the African nation, this ignited a massive conflict between Wakanda and Atlantis. Both are technologically advanced countries and are defined by their secretiveness and fierce independence. Those similarities have led to serval clashes, and the tension between the two nations has much been explored through their leaders. 

Image Via Marvel

With Namor’s inclusion in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever it will be fascinating to see what aspects they take from the comic counterpart and where it leads in the future. Namor will be played by Tenoch Huerta as the trailer offers us some unique and fascinating glimpses of the character. Through flashback sequences, we see what appears to be Namor being born underwater with his comic-accurate ankle wings which we then see later on as he grows older. The MCU’s take on Atlantis is a fantastic choice one that echos Mayan civilisation and Aztec culture and iconography. We see Namor in a ceremonial headdress and the world-building looks phenomenal as it’s rooted in history. I’m loving his Aztec-inspired variation of his comic-accurate green trunks. 

Huerta expressed his happiness at being able to take part in the MCU and called the experience “an honor.” He talks about inclusion, commenting that he’s from “the hood” but thanks to the inclusion of the MCU, he’s now “here.” He views the moment as an inspiration for all of the kids who grew up looking and living like himself, saying “a lot of kids are there in their hood, dreaming of being here, and they can make it!” Henoch also expressed his gratitude by delivering a message to his community and thanking everyone in Spanish.

Another aspect similar to the comics is that the Atlanteans have blue-coloured skin. Also making their live-action debuts are Namorita and Attuma. Namorita played by Mabel Cadena is the daughter of an Atlantean man and surface woman in the comics. In the comics, she has the ability to swim at superhuman speed and is immune to the cold and pressures of the depth. I’m loving the MCU depiction with her headdress and tribal wear as seen below. Attuma played by Alex Livinalli is the leader of a group of barbarian Atlanteans. He is superhumanly strong and is capable of lifting 60 tons even underwater. Attuma is a beast with his tribal wear and weapon axe.  

Image Via Marvel

Namor and the Atlanteans are so important and integral to other storylines that seeing them in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is only the beginning. After all the impending battle between the two nations is upon us. The full trailer featuring footage of Namor and the Atlanteans can be seen below. The cinematography and Coogler’s work here is among the most impressive there’s beaches and phenomenal underwater sequences that are truly otherworldly.

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Comic Book Movies

Madame Web Review

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Celeste O'Connor, Dakota Johnson, Isabela Merced & Sydney Sweeney (Sony)

Be ready to get caught in the web of Cassandra, our very own Madame Web. Swing by your local cinemas now to catch Madame Web on the big screen!

Plot

Cassandra Webb is a New York City paramedic who starts to show signs of clairvoyance. Forced to confront revelations about her past, she must protect three young women from a mysterious adversary who wants them dead.

Isabela Merced, Dakota Johnson, Sydney Sweeney, Celeste O’Connor (Sony)

Movie Review (no spoiler)

Madame Web, the fourth entry in the Sony’s Spider-Man Universe brings us a different take on a complete new group of heroes in the heart of New York. I need to caution the readers that when going to watch the movie, keep an open mind. This movie is about Madame Web and her role as a protector to three young women who will play a much greater role in future…hopefully. If you are expecting Peter Parker / Spider-Man to swing in and catch a crook, you will sadly be disappointed.

I firmly welcome the new take on the Spider-Women within Marvel. Since Across the Spider-Verse I have pondered the question on whether we will get a chance to see any of the Spider-Women on the big screen and also the ‘How?’. I have always seen Cassandra Webb / Madame Web play a motherlike and protector role. I personally think Dakota Johnson played her part excellently well in that sense.

Sydney Sweeney, Isabela Merced and Celeste O’Connor plays the parts of Julia Cornwall, Anya Corazon and Mattie Franklin and delivers a breath of fresh air. They are teased to play big roles in the future, according to the villain in the movie. The new villain of the movie, played by Tahar Rahim, provides a thrilling experience at first but gets taken down too easily at the end.

Tahar Rahim as Ezekiel Sims (Sony)

Madame Web provided a good introduction to a new character, which is Madame Web, but sadly doesn’t provide any promise of continuity and linkages with any of the existing movies within the current universe. A few easter eggs in the movie point to another beloved Marvel character, but I would have loved to experience more of Cassie’s web and the chance of a teaser for the other heroines of the movie since there are still so much stories left to tell. There is unfortunately no post-credits scene, which was a let down, considering Madame Web is part of the Sony Spider-Man Universe and continuity is what many are hopeful for. I’m curious if we get to see continuity later in the form of a sequel or even a cameo of Cassie, Julia, Mattie and / or Anya in any other production.

I rate this movie 3 out of 5.

The trailer doesn’t spoil too much of the storyline. Make sure to catch at a big screen near you.

Madame Web Official Trailer (Sony Pictures Entertainment)

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Comic Book Movies

Arachne: Character Profile

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Julia Carpenter née Cornwall (Marvel)

Fugitive, protector, and eventually an Avenger! Many aliases, many adventures. Here follows the background of Julia Carpenter née Cornwall.

Origin of Arachne

Julia, born and raised in Los Angeles, met the love of her life, Larry Carpenter while attending college. They have a daughter together, Rachel Carpenter, but sadly separated due to Larry being unfaithful. To ensure Julia could take care of her daughter she joined a secret covert project where the main objective was to create super-agents. She becomes the guinea pig for a series of experiments which prove to be quite successful.

Abilities

She had super strength, could cling to walls and even generate energy webs! She is given a cool costume, and even though she wants her codename to be Arachne, the Commission on Superhuman Activities decide her new name will be Spider-Woman. She can lift over ten tons and her psychic webs is powerful enough to stop a car at high speed. She eventually inherits Cassandra Webb’s / Madame Web’s powers, which enables her to see into the future and astral project.

Friends and Foes caught in Julia’s web

Julia faced off against the might Doctor Doom alongside the Avengers, the Fantastic Four and the X-Men. As a member of the Government’s Freedom Force, she was forced to arrest both mutants and the Avengers, which made her feel uneasy. She became a fugitive when she helped the Avengers escape. The Avengers would soon be exonerated, but Julia remained on the fugitive’s list. She eventually gave herself up and accepted a deal to work with the government again. She joined up with Spider-Man to face off against the Wrecking Crew and her support to the Avengers made her an active member on the roster of the Avengers, and this even sparked a romance with one of the team members (which I will not share, but allow you as the reader to find).

Julia had to balance her time between being a hero and a mother to Rachel. Another Spider-Woman, Charlotte Witter came on the scene and stole Julia’s powers, crippling her in the process. Joining forces with Jessica Drew, Mattie Franklin and Cassandra Webb allowed them to defeat Charlotte, but it didn’t help to restore her powers. A secret formula helped Julia recover her powers, but her problems was far from over.

Julia Carpenter née Cornwall as Spider-Woman (Marvel)

Using her secret codename, Arachne helped to avoid confusion with all of the Spider-Women, but the new Superhuman Registration Act forced superpowered individuals to register with the government, thus exposing themselves in the process. The Avengers was in full support of the new legislation, and Julia was soon recruited to help the Avengers capture unregistered heroes, however, she helped unregistered heroes avoid capture, and became a fugitive again. She was eventually arrested by Carol Danvers and Wonder Man. A pardon was offered, and she was required to join up with Omega Flight, a Canadian Government superhero team.

A dangerous plot by the Kravinoff family resulted not only in the death of Cassandra / Madame Web, but Madame Web’s psychic powers transferred to Julia, making her clairvoyant and able to astral project herself. This enabled her to see into the future and another hero at a later stage. Can you guess who?

The above stories about Julia Carpenter née Cornwall / Arachne have been shortened and enough detail has been left out to leave you hungry for more. I highly encourage subscribing to Marvel Unlimited to read up about Arachne or any of your favorite Marvel characters.

Madame Web Movie Coming Soon!

In a switch from the typical genre, Madame Web tells the standalone origin story of one of Marvel publishing’s most enigmatic heroines. The suspense-driven thriller stars Dakota Johnson as Cassandra Webb, a paramedic in Manhattan who develops the power to see the future… and realizes she can use that insight to change it. Forced to confront revelations about her past, she forges a relationship with three young women bound for powerful destinies…if they can all survive a deadly present.

Genre: Action / Sci-Fi / Superhero

Release Date: 14 February 2024

Directors: SJ Clarkson

Based on: Marvel Comics

Cast: Dakota Johnson, Sydney Sweeney, Celeste O’Connor, Isabela Merced, Tahar Rahim, Mike Epps, Emma Roberts & Adam Scott

Madame Web Movie Poster (Sony Pictures Entertainment)

Sydney Sweeney plays the role of Julia Cornwall in Madame Web.

Watch Madame Web on the big screen on 14 February 2024.

Madame Web Official Trailer (Sony Pictures Entertainment)

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Comic Book Movies

Madame Web: Character Profile

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Cassandra Webb / Madame Web (Marvel)

Paramedic, Psychic, Heroic! Meet Madame Web before getting caught in her web this month.

Abilities

Cassandra Webb is born in Salem, Oregon, and struggling with both sight and a serious neurological condition known as myasthenia gravis. She discovers she has psychic powers. She masters abilities such as clairvoyance, which is the ability to see things in the future; prescience, the ability to predict things; and telepathy. Through the use of astral projection she can appear to others. At one stage she is even connected to a spider web-like supportive system, but will allow you, the reader to find out more about it in the comics.

Friends and Foes

Madame Web’s web of allies include none other than Peter Parker / Spider-Man as well as many variations of Spider-Women such as Julia Carpenter and Mattie Franklin to list a few. She often helps Spider-Man protect other people, and this brings her in the crosshairs of notorious villains such as Doctor Otto Octavius, Electro and the Kravinoff family. The Juggernaut was sent once to kidnap her and this resulted in her falling in a coma and with short-term memory loss. Fearing death, she reached out to none other than the Green Goblin to learn about an arcane ritual that could grant possible immortality. Madame Web joins up with Spider-Man to stop the Dinosaur Man from turning New York into a prehistoric paradise using a special artifact.

Prior to dying, she managed to transfer her powers to one of the Spider-Women. Can you guess who?

The above stories about Cassandra Webb / Madame Web have been shortened and enough detail has been left out to leave you hungry for more. I highly encourage subscribing to Marvel Unlimited to read up about Madame Web or any of your favorite Marvel characters.

Cassandra Webb / Madame Web (Marvel)

Madame Web Movie Coming Soon!

In a switch from the typical genre, Madame Web tells the standalone origin story of one of Marvel publishing’s most enigmatic heroines. The suspense-driven thriller stars Dakota Johnson as Cassandra Webb, a paramedic in Manhattan who develops the power to see the future… and realizes she can use that insight to change it. Forced to confront revelations about her past, she forges a relationship with three young women bound for powerful destinies…if they can all survive a deadly present.

Genre: Action / Sci-Fi / Superhero

Release Date: 14 February 2024

Directors: SJ Clarkson

Based on: Marvel Comics

Cast: Dakota Johnson, Sydney Sweeney, Celeste O’Connor, Isabela Merced, Tahar Rahim, Mike Epps, Emma Roberts & Adam Scott

Madame Web Movie Poster (Sony Pictures Entertainment)

Dakota Johnson plays the titular role in Madame Web.

Watch Madame Web on the big screen on 14 February 2024.

Madame Web Official Trailer (Sony Pictures Entertainment)

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