Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Dr. Fate Art...a look inside the Tower of Fate

Dr. Fate's Tower by Craig Hamilton

Monday, January 30, 2012

Goodbye, Dr. Fate

Did you know that there is not only a song but an entire punk rock record referencing Dr. Fate?  Trusty's 1995 record "Good bye Dr. Fate" is not only the name of their record but also the title track.  I've been searching for the entire lyrics but have not been able to find them online.  But after hearing the song numerous times I heard references to Dr. Fate's helmet and costume.  Very cool!  Also, it appears that Trusty are/were beg DC Comic fans as they also have a song titled "Kal-El" on the same record.  Here is a youtube link to the song:


Friday, January 27, 2012

Dr. Fate Animated GIF's

Happy Friday everyone.  Thought I'd share some cool animated GIF's of Doctor Fate I found searching through the internets.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

More Earth 2/JSA Talk

DC released a short blog with James Robinson speaking a little more on the upcoming Earth 2 title.  Unfortunately, no real news is provided but it's still exciting to hear the buzz about the new book.  Keeping my fingers crossed that Dr. Fate will be among the Earth 2 characters.

Writer James Robinson on Earth-2

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Alex Ross Dr. Fate Poster

Beautiful, realistic artwork of Dr. Fate by renowned artist Alex Ross.  You can pick up a poster of the art work at DC Direct

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Preview: DC Universe Online Legends #22

Preview of  tomorrow's issue of DC Universe Online legends featuring Dr. Fate!

For the entire preview check out DC Comics' The Source Preview

Monday, January 23, 2012

Review: The Golden Age Dr. Fate Archives Vol. 1

This book needs to be reviewed on three separate levels.  First, the presentation (reprinting and binding); second, the first 1/3 of the book which introduces the powerful Dr. Fate with the full helm; and finally the last 2/3 of the book which deals with a constant changing Dr. Fate that seems to trade in his powers for wise cracks. 

In terms of presentation, the reprinting of the stories really does look beautiful  It is done in very high quality paper and the colors pop out at you.  I'm sure it looks even better than it did when the comics first came out.  The hard cover  and binding are very well done.  Overall, it is a very handsome book that boasts almost 400 pages of stories.  

Onto the stories themselves.  I really enjoyed the first 1/3 of the book which introduces Doctor Fate as a solitary being of great mystic power that speaks with a tone of esoteric authority.  He fights otherworldly, and mystic foes.  His very first nemesis is Wotan, a mystic sage of great power.  Throughout his adventures, Dr. Fate travels into the realm of the dead where he meets Nergal, deals with the Three Fates, crosses the River Styx, fights off an alien invasion, and send an entire planet of bad guys into the sun.  That's one thing about the old fate, he had no problem doing away with his enemies.  What's also interesting about the early Fate is his relationship with Inza.  Inza is not only a love interest but also a partner in his adventures.  She travels with him to other realms and is usually the first to warn the good Doctor about pending danger.  About half way through the stories we get Dr. Fate's origin story and we first hear of Nabu and how Kent Nelson received his powers.  In the first telling of the story Nabu is not a Lord of Order but rather an alien who visited Earth and resided in Egypt.  If you're a fan of the Ancient Aliens show like I am, the two may not be mutually exclusive. Nabu could be both a Lord of Order or a god and an alien.  Overall the first part of the book is pretty great.  The stories, although very short, are lots of fun.  Fox manages to put plenty of actual myth into the stories which make them very interesting.  

Now, for the second part of the book.  This is when Doctor Fate appears with the half helm, less than half of his mystic powers, and the stories get less interesting.  From what I've read elsewhere, they attempted to re-imagine Dr. Fate so that he is more human.  Hence the half helm and instead of the arcane tone of speaking, it was traded in for a wisecracks.  The villains become very generic as well, mostly organized crime type thugs, although from time to time he would fight someone with some type of super-power such as Mr. Who, who has the ability to shape shift and change size do to his special formula.  Dr. Fate continues to morph over time and by the end of the book he has lost his cape and shoulder pads.  All he has left of his powers is the ability to fly and invulnerability to bullets.  However, he has a strange weakness in that anything having to do with abstracting his air flow or access to fresh air renders him useless even if it is for short periods of time.  Also, Kent Nelson decides to become a real doctor at some point, since his alter ego is Dr. Fate. Unfortunately, all the changes turned Dr. Fate, who was once a very interesting and unique character, into a generic, wise-cracking superhero.  I'm glad that when he was reintroduced with the JSA more than a decade later, they decided to bring the full helmed mystic being back, rather than the generic version they morphed him into at the end of his first run.  

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Doctor Fate Cake

I am going to hire http://puppip.deviantart.com/ to make me this cake when I celebrate the Tower of Fate 1 year anniversary in November.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Review: JSA 1 Shot Dec.'10 (Dr. Fate story)

This is a review of the Dr. Fate story from the December 2010 JSA One-Shot issue. The issue actually features one shot stories of several JSA members such as Mr. Terrific, Sand, Obsidian, Cyclone, Wildcat and Jesse Quick.  However, since this is a Dr. Fate blog, I will be focusing on the Dr. Fate story from this issue.

The story is written by Brandon Jerwa, and the art is provided by Mateus Santolouco.  This is a really touching story that features the last incarnation of Dr. Fate, Kent V. Nelson.  Dr. Nelson learns about a former patient of his taking his own life in the local paper.  His patient, Michael Cohn, takes his life after his wife loses her battle with cancer.  Dr. Nelson was seeing Michael as he was going through the ordeal of having to deal with his wife's decease.  After their last session, Dr. Nelson felt that Michael had the tools and confidence to deal with the pending death of his wife and felt that Michael was a "success story."  When he learns of Michael taking his life, Dr. Nelson feels that that he let Michael down and as Dr. Fate decides to go into the real of the dead to try and bring him back.  Unbeknownst to Dr. Fate, he is being watched and followed by a demon of chaos who follows him into the realm of the dead.

Once in the realm of the dead, Dr. Fate finds Michael and tries to tell him that his wife would like him to live in happiness rather than taking his life. At this point, the demon shows up with Michael's wife and offers Michael a chance to be with his wife forever if he enters into the bargain of serving the demon as his master.  Dr. Fate explains that he knew all along that the demon was following him, and allowed him to do so because he knew the demon would bring Michael's wife to them.  Dr. Fate then cast a spell setting Michael's wife free and another banishing the demon from the realm.  Dr. Fate then reveals his identity to both Michael and his wife and asks for forgiveness for failing them.  The couple explain that Dr. Nelson indeed did not fail them, but provided Michael with the strength he needed to go through the ordeal of watching the cancer take his wife from him.  They further explain that the are now somehow happier.  Kent and Inza Nelson also make a cameo as they will be showing the newly dead couple around their new surroundings.

The story, although not action packed, was very well written. As I've said in the past, I really like Kent V. Nelson as a character.  It's too bad that he (more than likely) will not be returning as Dr. Fate in the upcoming Earth-2 books.  The art is also excellent.  I liked the use of the coloring once Dr. Fate enters the dead realm, it gives you the feeling that they are indeed in not just another world, but an entire other realm.  Overall, this an excellent one shot story that I like to go back and re-read every so often.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Doctor Fate Art on Deviant Art

Here is some great Dr. Fate artwork I found on www.deviantart.com

                                                       art by : http://thuddleston.deviantart.com/

                                                     art by: http://ultimeciaffb.deviantart.com/

                                                      art by: http://cenkgungor.deviantart.com/

                                                   art by: http://vadlor.deviantart.com/

                                                       art by: http://gammaknight.deviantart.com/

                                          art by: http://jvollmer.deviantart.com/

                                                          art by: http://bluebird0020.deviantart.com/

Thursday, January 12, 2012

JSA/Earth-2 News Announced!

DC announces "second wave" of comics adding to their new 52 universe.  One of the additions is the Earth-2 book which will feature the Justice Society of America.

This is from the DC Comics website:

DC COMICS-THE NEW 52 “Second Wave” includes:
  • EARTH 2 – Writer: James Robinson. Artist: Nicola Scott. The greatest heroes on a parallel Earth, the Justice Society combats threats that will set them on a collision course with other worlds.
Let's hope that Dr. Fate is included in the initial cast of characters of the new JSA.  For the full story check out the DC Blog:  http://dcu.blog.dccomics.com/2012/01/12/dc-comics-in-2012-%E2%80%93-introducing-the-%E2%80%9Csecond-wave%E2%80%9D-of-dc-comics-the-new-52/

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

History of Dr. Fate Pt. 4

I debated on whether or not including Jared Stevens in the history of Dr. Fates as he was technically not a "Dr. Fate" and in fact rejected the role when Nabu asked him to be the next Doctor.  He does not wear the Helm of Nabu but instead wielded weapons that were formed by melting down the helm.  Although he was not really in the line of Dr. Fate's he did use the helm (albeit in a different manner) and wielded magic powers.  So I decided to include him in the list.  So with no further adieu, here is the history of Jared Stevens or Fate as he was known (taken from dc.wikia.com):

Jared Stevens was hired to retrieve the cloak, amulet and helmet of Dr. Fate from Egypt, and was subsequently summoned by the aged Kent and Inza Nelson, who had both previously been Doctor Fate, to their home in Salem so that they could reclaim their power. The artifacts rejected the Nelsons however, and they were then killed by agents of a demon called Kingdom who wanted the artifacts for himself. Jared tried to use the amulet against the demons but it exploded, and somehow bestowed various mystical abilities on Jared (as well as an Ankh tattoo over his eye) while also damaging his right arm. Jared tore up the cloak and used it to bandage the arm; the arm was immediately restored to normal, though Jared later discovered that if he removed the bandage, it was effectively dead. He went on to melt the helmet down and fashion the mystic metal into a dagger and Ankh shaped throwing stars. Having fought off Kingdom's demons, Jared was contacted by Nabu the Wise, the Lord of Order who had empowered the Nelsons and who now wanted to make Jared the new Doctor Fate. Jared refused, but was reluctantly drawn into his unwanted new role as one of earth's mystical defenders, operating under the name 'Fate'. He made allies of several of Earth's other heroes, including Kent Nelson's former Justice Society of America teammate Sentinel.
Jared was eventually murdered by the wizard Mordru, warning the Justice Society of the 'Dark Lord' and his plans with his dying breath at the funeral of Mordru's other victim, Wesley Dodds, the Sandman. The artifacts of Fate reconstituted themselves into their original forms at Kent Nelson's Tower and were later claimed by the next Doctor Fate, Hector Halll while Jared's spirit was for a time seen to exist inside Fate's amulet.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Dr. Fate Smackdown vs Raw Intro

This is a great fan made video by Youtube user WestCoastCaws of Dr. Fate entering the wrestling ring for a match.  The intro was made with Smackdown vs Raw 2009 on Xbox 360.

Doctor Fate Smackdown vs Raw intro by WestCoastCaws

Thursday, January 5, 2012

A Comparison of the Babylonian Mythology of Negal (Nergal) and the DC Mythology of Negal

One of the more fascinating aspects of the Dr. Fate character is how his comic mythology is intertwined with that of actual Egyptian/Mesopotamian/Babylonian mythology.  Much how like Marvel's Thor mythos is intertwined with that of the actual Norse mythology.  In one of my previous posts I examined the relationship between the actual Assyrian mythos of Nabu and the DC comics mythos of Nabu.  This time I would like to examine both mythologies of one of Dr. Fate's villains Negal. 

Starting with Negal's (or Nergal) historical myth, he is said to be a god of war and pestilence.  He presides over the Netherworld and is the head of a special pantheon assigned to the government of the dead.  He is often depicted with the top half of a man and bottom half of a lion, like a centaur except the body of a lion instead of a horse.  Negal is also mention in the bible as the deity of the city of Cuth.  In demonology, he is seen as a deity of the desert, god of the underworld,  and is at times identified with Satan.  According to Collin de Plancy and Johann Weyer, Negal was said to be the chief of Hell's "secret police", and said to be "an honorary spy in the service of Beelzebub".

Negal first appears as a villian in Dr. Fate stories in More Fun Comics #67.  In the story Negal is ruler of the Charnel Regions, which Dr. Fate refers to as the Dead World.  Dr. Fate descends into the Charnel Regions to confront Negal about sending dead spirits into the living world.  When Dr. Fate finds him, Negal is sitted in a throne-like chair holding a club and a skull.  Dr. Fate defeats Negal by intimidation, making the skull that Negal is holding disappear and threatening to do the same to Negal.

Negal does not face Dr. Fate until the recent Count Down to Mystery mini-series in which Negal is looking for the next bearer of the Helm of Nabu.  This happens to be the grandnephew of Kent Nelson, the original Dr. Fate, who is named after his predecessor.  In the story, Negal is depicted like much more of a demon and ruler of the underworld.  He is a Lord of Chaos, but is also referred to as the lord of pestilence.  In the story he also refers to his initial meeting with the original Dr. Fate when the doctor descended in to the Charn Regions and threatened to destroy Negal.

Neither of the DC depictions of Negal are similar to that of the ancient Babylonians who (as stated before) depicted him as a half human-half lion being.  In the early DC depiction, Negal is a giant with pale blue skin and not much muscle mass.  In the later DC depiction, Negal has the look of a powerful warrior-king with dark blue skin.  Much of the original Negal mythos is kept in tact by DC comics which makes Dr. Fate that much more of an interesting character and that much more fun to read.

Ancient Babylonian depiction of Negal (Nergal)

DC Comics' depiction of Negal

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

DC New 52 JSA Rumor Mill

Looks like we are getting closer and closer to getting our beloved JSA back! 

James Robinson tweeted the following today:

"@  JSA character designs are taking shape nicely. Feeling really good about them."
Can't wait to see Dr. Fate's new character design!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

You can own the Helm of Fate

Here's something neat I found while searching for Doctor Fate memorabilia on ebay: The Helm of Nabu and Amulet of Anubis!  Well, not the actual artifacts of fate but a great replica from Pit Viper Studios.  According to their ebay listing, the helmet is made out of fiberglass and is ready to wear (up to size 9 hat).

Although the price of $275 (plus shipping) for the helm and amulet are a bit out of my price range for me at the moment in order to do a full review, I don't think it's astronomically priced for such a great item(s).  Below is a picture of the Helm along with links to their ebay auction and main webpage.

Link to ebay auction for Dr. Fate Helm & Amulet of Anubis

Pit Viper Studios Home Page