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‘Avengers: Age of Ultron’ Report Card: How the Comics’ Heroes Have Fared on the Screen

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The Avengers are very famous indeed. After the success of their second movie as a team — and the tenth movie to feature any of the members — the Marvel heroes have a presence and profile in our culture like never before. It's a strange new reality to adjust to for those of us who remembers when co-workers, cousins and schoolmates had no knowledge of Iron Man or Black Widow, and perhaps only the vaguest idea about Captain America, and they thought of the Hulk as a sad man named David with flared trousers and a haunting piano theme.

Now millions know these characters and could probably pick them out of a line-up. But the non-comics audience knows slightly different versions of the characters than the ones we might be used to. Sometimes the changes made from page to screen are for the better, sometimes for the worse, and sometimes they're... just different. In the best cases, the movies offer brilliant new takes on the characters that inform and refresh their comic book counterparts. So with that in mind, where does Avengers: Age of Ultron leave the best-known versions of these heroes?

This article contains extensive spoilers for Avengers: Age of Ultron. It's been out for almost two weeks; you should have seen it by now.

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The Transformed Man, Act 5: Interference Patterns

Transformers: Robots In Disguise vol. 2

I’ve never liked the Transformers. The franchise never really got its hooks into me when I was a kid, and while I’ve tried to give it a shot as an adult, it’s never really clicked. But now, with the recommendations of almost everyone I know and a well-timed Humble Bundle sale, I’ve found myself in possession of three years worth (and counting) of IDW’s More Than Meets The Eye and Robots In Disguise comics. I’m working my way through a story arc every week, and if I have to read about these robots, you’re coming with me.

This week, the Decepticons have a time machine. So, you know. That's not good.

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‘Arrow’ Season 3 Recap, Episode 23: ‘My Name Is Oliver Queen’

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The CW’s superhero series Arrow re-imagines Green Arrow for a TV audience as a tough, often ruthless vigilante bent on setting things right in his home of Starling City by punishing the wicked. ComicsAlliance’s Matt Wilson is here to wrap up the third season of the popular series in our recap feature we’re dubbing Pointed Commentary.

This week: Everything comes to a head in the big finale! Viruses unleashed! Feelings laid bare! Decisions made! Lives ended! Alcoholism pep talked away! Explosions exploded!

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‘Convergence: The Atom’ Is The Weirdest Superhero Comic Of The Year, And One Of The Best

Convergence: The Atom #1, DC Comics

If DC's Convergence event has given us anything, it's an opportunity for creators go back to characters and continuities that we thought we were done, and set a few things right. You can see it in books like The Question or Nightwing/Oracle, where characters and relationships are finally getting the closure that they never really got while they were part of the ongoing DC Universe. It's that idea of going back and correcting something that forms the core of what Tom Peyer, Steve Yeowell and Andy Owens have done in the pages of Convergence: The Atom, dealing with the death of Ryan Choi at the hands of Deathstroke the Terminator.

The thing is, with The Atom, they're doing that with the most completely ludicrous comic of the 21st Century, and it's amazing.

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Toy Review: Hot Toys Guardians of the Galaxy Little Groot

Hot Toys Guardians of the Galaxy Little Groot

Little, potted Groot dancing his branches off was arguably the most memorable moment from the 2014 surprise superhero hit Guardians of the Galaxy. Many companies sought to capture the moment with a figure or collectible, but none of them were as movie-accurate as Hot Toys' 1/4 scale Little Groot.

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‘Arrow’ Season 3 Recap, Episode 22: ‘This Is Your Sword’

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The CW’s superhero series Arrow re-imagines Green Arrow for a TV audience as a tough, often ruthless vigilante bent on setting things right in his home of Starling City by punishing the wicked. ComicsAlliance’s Matt Wilson is back for the third season of the popular series in our recap feature we’re officially dubbing Pointed Commentary.

This week: A wedding! A weird one with a lot of violent imagery, sure, but a wedding nonetheless. Also, a ruse is revealed and a mechanic says goodbye.

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The Transformed Man, Act 4: Life After The Big Bang

Transformers: More Than Meets The Eye v.2

I’ve never liked the Transformers. The franchise never really got its hooks into me when I was a kid, and while I’ve tried to give it a shot as an adult, it’s never really clicked. But now, with the recommendations of almost everyone I know and a well-timed Humble Bundle sale, I’ve found myself in possession of three years worth (and counting) of IDW’s More Than Meets The Eye and Robots In Disguise comics. I’m working my way through a story arc every week, and if I have to read about these robots, you’re coming with me.

This week, my favorite Autobot gets his head blown clean off, because of course he does. Uh... spoiler warning?

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‘Battle Lines’ Immerses Readers in the World of the Civil War

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Jonathan Fetter-Vorm and Ari Kelman's Battle Lines: A Graphic History of the Civil War is a fascinating look at one of the biggest events in United States history, with particular focus on the war's impact on individuals. The book is released today, May 5, on the 150th anniversary of the start of the Civil War, and it's an interesting comic in which the creators tell a compelling story. The vignette format the creators chose can be a difficult one to get readers invested in characters, but they pull it off. They also pull off some great commentary on the treatment of African-Americans before, during, and after the war, which of course affects our society even to this day.

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Tom Scioli And John Barber’s Two-Page ‘Transformers vs. GI Joe’ Strip Is The Best Thing About Free Comic Book Day

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If you were just going by what was on the covers when you grabbed your Free Comic Book Day titles on Saturday, you might have missed one of the best comics on the stands. I almost did --- as much as I've been enjoying IDW's Transformers comics now that I'm finally reading them, I haven't had much of a chance to watch the new cartoon, and as a result, I skipped over the FCBD tie-in comic when I picked mine up.

It wasn't until I flipped through it later that I realized there was a short story from Tom Scioli and John Barber in there, tying into their GI Joe vs. Transformers ongoing series. And it's amazing.

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Advance Review: ‘Fight Club 2′ #1 Is Clever And Beautiful, But It’s Not All-Singing, All-Dancing

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I have weird feelings about Fight Club, both the 1996 novel and 1999 movie adaptation. On the one hand, they're clever. Exceedingly clever, and I love clever. They have great dialogue and a twist that can really get you. The movie is visually stunning. And yet, there's the big question: "What exactly is this trying to say?" Is it a satire and indictment of macho behavior, or a (perhaps unwilling) endorsement of it?

The first issue of author Chuck Palahniuk's comics sequel to his book with artist Cameron Stewart (though in some ways, it seems to be more of a sequel to the movie) is in every way a continuation of that. It's clever, it's gorgeous, and it isn't entirely clear what it's trying to get across.

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