Identity was a major theme in the Nov. 30 episode of Titans, Donna Troy. Kory (Anna Diop) was trying to recover her memory, Gar (Ryan Potter) was reconciling what it means to become a tiger, Rachel (Teagan Croft) was finally getting some time to know her mother, Angela (Rachel Nichols), and Dick Grayson (Brenton Thwaites) was facing his own shattered identity after a recent run-in with the new Robin (Curran Walters) and the terror he experienced at the Organization’s asylum. Who better to talk to about these issues than the former Wonder Girl and Dick s oldest friend, Donna Troy, a comic book character defined as much by the constant revisions made to her identity as her constant presence in the Teen Titans line of comic books?On the show, Donna seems to be a rock-solid ex-superhero sidekick, but her history in the comics is not exactly set in stone. Rotten Tomatoes spoke with Conor Leslie, the world’s first live-action Donna Troy, about her comic book counterpart s crazy past and just who the character is in the world of Titans.Who Is Wonder Girl?(Photo by DC Universe)The concept of Wonder Girl predates Donna Troy. In 1958’s Wonder Woman #105, Wonder Girl was introduced as a younger version of Diana for a flashback tale. By 1961, Wonder Woman comics featured stories in which the grown up Diana, Wonder Girl, and even a Wonder Tot appeared simultaneously in an attempt to give Wonder Woman more of a domestic home life — even if her family was composed of these younger versions of herself and her mother Hippolyta.This original intention changed as writer Bob Haney began to treat Wonder Girl as a separate character and included her as a founding member of the Teen Titans in 1965’s The Brave and the Bold #60. The Diana version of Wonder Girl made one last appearance that same year in Wonder Woman #158, where she and Wonder Tot were seemingly “killed” by Wonder Woman editor Robert Kanigher.Wonder Girl transferred into the Teen Titans cast, but her name and new origin remained a mystery until 1969’s Teen Titans #22, when writer Marv Wolfman gave Wonder Girl the name “Donna Troy” and a backstory: She was an orphan Diana rescued from a burning building and took to Themyscira to be raised as an Amazon. The group of warrior women later gave her abilities similar to Wonder Woman via a fanciful bit of science-fiction convenience.But because the Wonder Girl character is older than Donna Troy, the character’s origins, powers, and motivations have always been malleable. Those changes are a major point Leslie noted while researching her new TV character.“As soon as I [started reading], I got overwhelmed because her backstory changes so dramatically,” she told Rotten Tomatoes. “I paused early on and talked to [producer and showrunner] Greg Walker to see where he and Geoff Johns wanted to go with all of this. If I had continued to fill my head with more information, it would’ve made my mind implode.”The 1987 revision of Wonder Woman s origin turned Donna into an active character that existed before Wonder Woman debuted in the new history, ushering in a revolving door of concepts to explain how there was a Wonder Girl before a Wonder Woman. For a time, she was a duplicate of Diana created as a playmate who was later kidnapped and placed in suspended animation, an incomplete fusion of other Donna
After saving the City from the reign of The Terror last season, Tick (Peter Serafinowicz) and Arthur (Griffin Newman) are now free to kick some new villain butt. That tail, in this case, belongs to a dastardly crustacean named Lobstercules. The do-gooding duo encounter the crusty fiend during a bank deposit gone very, very wrong in season 2 of The Tick.About the new season:Tick and Arthur must now defend the City from new villains and old enemies —that is, if they can convince AEGIS, the government agency in charge of superhero regulation, that they deserve the job. But now that the City is safe enough to protect, Tick and Arthur begin to see they’ve got competition.Meanwhile, vigilante Overkill (Scott Speiser) is struggling to adjust to the “no killing” policy Tick ordered, and Arthur’s sister Dot (Valorie Curry) begins to embrace the realities of the world around her. Ms. Lint (Yara Martinez) returns with an eye on creating a new image for herself, and Superian (Brendan Hines) learns what happens when a superhero is not always perfect. And, through it all, Dangerboat (voiced by Alan Tudyk) tries to keep the team safe — while continuing to harbor strong feelings for someone special.The Tick season 2 premieres Friday, April 5 on Amazon Prime Video
Adjusted Score: 100481% Critics Consensus: In his feature directorial debut, Steven Soderbergh demonstrates a mastery of his craft well beyond his years, pulling together an outstanding cast and an intelligent script for a nuanced, mature film about neurosis and human sexuality. Synopsis: Ann (Andie MacDowell) is trapped in a sexually and emotionally unfulfilled relationship with her husband, John (Peter Gallagher), a successful... [More] Starring: James Spader, Andie MacDowell, Peter Gallagher, Laura San Giacomo Directed By: Steven Soderbergh
(Photo by New Line Cinema)During the casting for A Nightmare on Elm Street, director Wes Craven thought he needed a “big man.” After all, it was going to be a horror movie about an evil, dream-haunting psychopath who slaughters kids with a glove fitted with knives. In his mind, Craven was following the precedent set by Tobe Hooper in 1974 and John Carpenter in 1978 – The Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Halloween both featured hulking, unstoppable man-monsters. Craven even interviewed Kane Hodder – the man who would wear the hockey mask once Jason Voorhees took center stage in the Friday the 13th series – for the part.But a skinny, young actor named Robert Englund thought that most child abusers were weasels and creeps, not hulks. So he offered a different take on the lecherous Freddy Krueger, and not only would Nightmare take off because of it, but horror movies themselves would be changed forever.Released 35 years ago this week, A Nightmare on Elm Street took the concept of the bad guy as the marquee character – the one people not only came to see, but to actively cheer on – to whole new levels. The faceless, voiceless, mask-obscured killing machines that preceded Nightmare had to make way for a mugging, self-referential, hammy villain-hero.The Diva Who Shunned the MaskIn the end credits of Halloween, the character of Michael Myers isn’t even listed by name. He’s called “The Shape.” This is significant because Michael isn’t meant to be anyone. The whole point is that he just is, a silent menace in the periphery as the movie focuses on the guilt-ridden Dr. Loomis (Donald Pleasence) and high school good girl Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis). With his slow movement, white, expressionless face, and complete silence, Michael is a terrifying blank slate.A few years later, Friday the 13th would completely obscure its main villain until the very end – revealing at last that the murders were committed by a revenge-obsessed woman scarred by the apparent death of her son, Jason, many years before. When Jason himself took the spotlight in the next few installments, he, too, was a silent, expressionless entity who at first wears a nondescript bag over his head before he even gets his signature goalie mask (in Part III).And yet, by 1986’s Friday the 13th Part 6: Jason Lives, we saw the movie literally opening with a tongue-in-cheek James Bond parody:What happened? Freddy happened.A Nightmare on Elm Street had the same bland, suburban setting as Halloween and a similar gang of horny teens as the Friday films, but there was a key difference. Freddy wasn t just scary, he was darkly witty. He was creative. He was, well, a thousand times more interesting than anyone he killed.Sure, people went to horror movies for the killer or the monster – this had been true since the 1950s. You went to see The Blob because you wanted to see the blob. But this was different. Audiences liked Freddy. He was the star, not just the threat, and things only got hammier as the franchise went along. It was because, rather than going with yet another “big man” monster, Craven and Englund delivered a performance. Freddy was a theatrical diva.Would any other slasher work so well in a Fresh Prince video?The other competitors had no choice but to follow suit. Although somewhat hamstrung by their lack of personality, Jason and Michael still went through increasingly bizarre and laughable incarnations in an effort to keep up with Freddy. This is why we eventually got cyborg space-Jason and Busta Rhymes electrocuting Michael Myers in the crotch after he shouts, “Trick or treat, motherf er!”Post-Nightmare, movie slashers had to be more than just killers. They needed to be in the spotlight, not the shadows. One-liners, theatricality, and insane death scenarios all became requirements. We’d never have IT’s Pennywise or Scream’s Ghostface without Freddy.So to celebrate the mugging, one-liner-spewing dream-weaver on his 35th anniversary, let’s run down his greatest hits.The Five Best Freddy Kills1) A Nightmare on Elm Street: “Watch this.”Freddy’s first outing really sets the tone, and this scene has it all. Rather than simply stalking and killing Tina (Amanda Wyss), he toys with her, throwing out one-liners and a few party tricks as he leads her to an overly elaborate demise. Freddy is playing to the crowd.2) Nightmare On Elm Street 4: The Dream Master: “Wanna suck face?”Freddy kills an asthmatic girl by dropping this one-liner before literally sucking the air out of her lungs and leaving her a deflated corpse.3) Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare: “Let’s trip out.”Freddy s satirical take on the “This is your brain…” PSAs from the 80s and 90s – complete with a cameo from former Freddy victim Johnny Depp – and an extended Super Mario Bros.-inspired kill is all the proof you need that he was a frustrated comedian.4) A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child: “Bon Appétit!”Dressing up as a chef and strapping a girl with an eating disorder into a high chair for the sole purpose of force-feeding her to death in front of her overbearing mother? Can you imagine Leatherface putting in this kind of multi-layered effort?5) A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors: “Welcome to prime time, b h!”A scene that begins with former talk show host Dick Cavett turning into Freddy before killing Zsa Zsa Gabor can’t possibly get any more insane, can it? Oh, yes. Freddy literally pops out of the TV and pulls Jennifer (Penelope Sudrow) face-first into the set with his mechanical TV arms. With an applause-baiting one-liner, of course.A Nightmare on Elm Street went into wide release on November 16, 1984.