ScreenCrush’s Comic Strip is a weekly roundup of the hottest superhero movie/TV news items. From Marvel to DC and points in between, if it pertains to costumed comic book heroes, we’re covering it here, bringing you our expert analysis. This week, we tear apart the new Avengers 2 poster, get really grumpy about Daredevil’s costume, and take a look at what Suicide Squad director David Ayer has to say about the new Joker.

What Does the New Avengers 2 Poster Tell Us?

Last week, a new poster for Avengers 2 arrived and it looks like most Marvel Studios one-sheets: busy, cluttered, and photoshopped to death, the result of marketing more than art. The poster is really more about “Look at all of the characters who are in this movie!” instead of actually being something that actually looks nice on a wall. Here it is:

Yeah, it’s pretty bad, huh? But do yourself a favor and click on it. And then zoom in. Scroll down past the line-up of poorly sized superheroes and random debris and focus on the credits block at the bottom. This is where all of the interesting things about this poster lie.

After the long list of the usual names (and note that Robert Downey Jr. is the only person whose agent secured him placement before the title of the movie), we come to a few supporting characters. There’s Cobie Smulders, AKA, Maria Hill, who was seen applying for a job with Tony Stark at the end of Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Everyone knew she was in the movie, but how big is her role in the finished film? Big enough to secure placement here at the very least, something that Don Cheadle didn’t get (and we actually see Rhodey hanging out with the Avengers in the trailer).

That brings us to the next name, Anthony Mackie, AKA, the Falcon. After being one of the many highlights of Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Mackie made it very clear to anyone who asked him that he wanted a part in the next Avengers film ... and it looks like he got his wish. But once again, we have to ask: how big is his part? He hasn’t been present in any of the marketing materials so far, but he apparently has a part big enough to get on the poster. Considering that both Joss Wedon and Chris Hemworth spoke up about the film’s truly crazy climax in recent interviews, could he be part of the calvary that shows up to help save the day in the final fight? And if Falcon shows up, does that imply that other heroes may put in an appearance? It’s easy to imagine every established Marvel hero rushing in to help in the final fight against Ultron, but you’d think we would have heard something about it. The mere presence of Mackie suggests that we probably know less about this movie than we thought we did.

And then there’s Stellan Skarsgaard, who will reprise the role of Eric Selvig in the film. We have two questions and one comment. First: when he took a job as a supporting character in Thor, did Skarsgaard realize he’d be playing that character three more times? Second: what is his role in the story this time around and how the heck did Joss Whedon find any space to squeeze him in there? Finally: we think he’s going to die. Someone has to die in this movie to establish dramatic stakes (think Agent Coulson in the first Avengers). Plus, it’s the Joss Whedon way. He wants his stories to hurt. Selvig is established enough to get a big response when he bites the dust, but his demise won’t remove a potentially valuable character from Marvel’s roster. Honestly, we think Hawkeye may be safe. Maybe.

But let’s scroll down just a little more. We knew that Brian Tyler was providing the musical score for the film and he’s credited appropriately. So what is Danny Elfman’s name doing there? And why is the acclaimed composer credited with “additional material by”? This credit may imply that Elfman has contributed something new to the score, but it’s far more likely that the film repurposes something he has previously written.

Option one. There is a chance that a piece of his music was used as a temp track and everyone fell in love with it and they paid to keep it.

Option two. Maybe (maaaybe!) the film reprises a bit of the music he wrote for 2003’s Hulk ... which is unlikely, since that film has no connection to the current iteration of the character. If the film was going to borrow any existing Hulk themes, it would probably take them from the Marvel-produced The Incredible Hulk.

Option three. That brings us to the Wacky Idea of the Week. What if the sample is from the music Elfman recorded for Sam Raimi’s original Spider-Man movies? And what if Avengers 2 will feature an appearance not just from Spider-Man, but from the original Spider-Man, played by Tobey Maguire? What if Marvel Studios is planning to ignore The Amazing Spider-Man completely so it could bring the first three Spider-Man movies into continuity with the MCU?

And then they can dramatically kill off Maguire in a future movie to give his version of the character a proper ending before they introduce Miles Morales as the new young Spidey. This is not our original idea, but it’s waaay too good to ignore. It’s never going to happen, but how great would that be?

Suicide Squad and a “Majestic” Joker

Director David Ayer has spent the past few weeks teasing the upcoming Suicide Squad through his Twitter account, offering tiny behind-the-scenes glimpses of the set and props as everything comes together. But now, he’s really diving into a subject that’s going to get the fans on their toes: the Joker.

From the moment is was announced, Jared Leto’s casting as the Crown Prince of Crime ws divisive. Some fans are just concerned that we won’t live up to the high bar set by Heath Ledger. Others just think he’s a poor choice. In any case, we expect that Ayer and Leto’s take on the iconic villain will be completely and totally different from what we have seen onscreen before. In fact, when asked to describe the Joker in one word, Ayer replied thusly:

Huh. After Christopher Nolan’s more realistic take on the character in The Dark Knight, we would certainly be down for a dapper, dashing and theatrical take on Batman’s number one adversary. If that’s what he means by “majestic,” then we are all for it.


chatted about taking on the role of  Amanda Waller, the woman who has the Joker on a leash during 
Suicide Squad. Although she claims to be a comic book fan, her whole statement seems to be more “Of course I wasn’t going to turn down a role in a major blockbuster like this!” than “It’s a dream come true!” Still, there mere presence of Davis is going to class this joint up:

As a comic book and Wonder Woman fan, I love the whole DC Comics universe. I traded comics as a kid so all of that appeals to me. When you dream about being an actor as a kid, that's what you dream about. It's like play acting: being the superhero, getting the gun; it plays into that fantasy. How to Get Away with Murder changed my exposure. I don't know if it changed the quality of roles as much as it the exposure. I mean certainly Amanda Waller is a fabulous character.

Speaking of the women in Suicide Squad, Margot Robbie, the new Harley Quinn, spoke about the tone of the film, saying that it will be more The Dark Knight than Avengers.

Let’s Complain About That Daredevil Costume

First, take a look at this gallery of images from Marvel’s upcoming Daredevil series. The supporting cast, from Kingpin to Foggy Nelson, looks just about right. Now, check out this motion poster, where star Charlie Cox looks so much like the ideal Matt Murdock that it makes our heads spin. The only thing more iconic than Daredevil’s red horned costume is him in lawyer mode, still showing of his wounds from a night of crime-fighting.

So all of that makes each and every look at his actual superhero costume all the more depressing. C’mon! Look at this thing!

Film Ink

If the goal was to make Daredevil look like a pirate, they certainly succeeded. Sure, it’s a recreation of how Frank Miller depicted the character’s earliest attempts at a costume, but that doesn’t mean it’s good. We can only cross our fingers and hope that he gets his real costume by the second or third episode, because this is a hugely uninspiring look.

Marvel

We do know this, though: Daredevil will get his classic red outfit at point in the series. We just hope it won’t be in the final shot of the season.

We know this because shorunner Steven S. DeKnight said so in a new interview, explaining that the show will actually explain, step-by-step, how a blind superhero assembles a costume:

Without giving too much away, this show is Matt learning to be a hero. He starts in that first iteration of the Daredevil outfit which is taken very much from Frank Miller and The Man Without Fear. But I always questioned [the main costume]. I mean, one, he's blind. Did he stitch it together himself? How did he manage all that? So, actually getting him to that point I thought was really interesting.

Costume designer Stephanie Maslansky also spoke about the outfit, explaining that this iteration is made entirely from stuff Matt could find for himself:

In the end, somebody else [in the story] makes his Daredevil costume. What's really exciting is the evolution of it, and how he comes to have it made.

Ah, so there’s a mystery here! Someone else in Matt Murdock’s life is going to make his classic costume for him. Hopefully they work fast.

No, They Haven’t Cast the New Spider-Man Yet

Last week, we heard rumors that Sony and Marvel were considering casting a black or latino actor as the new Spider-Man, which is certainly cool news. More importantly, it’s not news that directly contradicts our wacky theory about a Spidey appearance in Avengers 2 (see above). But let’s be honest with ourselves here: there will probably be a brand new Spider-Man from the start, he will probably be Peter Parker, and he will probably be played by a white guy.

And when it comes to white guys, you don’t get much whiter than Hunger Games star Josh Hutcherson, who was up for the part when they were originally casting The Amazing Spider-Man. And yes, he’s still interested in the role:

Yeah, of course I’d think about doing it: It’s Spider-Man, that’d be really cool. There’s not been any conversations about that, but who knows what would happen?

Meanwhile, other old contender reared his head. Remember when everyone really wanted Donald Glover to play Spider-Man and a social media campaign was launched to get him cast? Well, that’s still a thing and in a new interview, Glover didn’t deny being in contention for the part:

I can’t say that either. I mean, it’s not out yet. There’s been talkings about it. I’d be honored to play it, but it’s really not up to me. I just want Spider-Man to be good. I think Spider-Man’s one of my favorite characters.

Then again, he also doesn’t confirm anything. So, in other words, no one knows anything. They haven’t cast Spider-Man yet and if there is a frontrunner, we certainly don’t know who it is.

But consider this: how cool would it be if Marvel has cast their new Spider-Man, have kept it a secret, and plan to reveal him in a tiny cameo in Avengers 2? Unlikely, we know, but audiences would lose their freakin’ minds.