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Trey Bankhead


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From late spring through the fall, the Buffalo Niagara and southern Ontario regions are home to many fan conventions, commonly known as cons. These events draw fans from across the continent, lured by the prospect of all the loot they could want, being surrounded by people who share their interests, getting pictures of and with the best cosplayers and, of course, the ch…

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It's 2008 and I'm watching "Iron Man" with a packed house in the Regal Elmwood. After the end credits, Robert Downey Jr.'s Tony Stark steps back into his home. A figure stirs in the shadows. "You think you're the only superhero in the world?," he says. "Mr. Stark, you've become part of a bigger universe. You just don't know it yet." The audience sucks in a breath. …

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You want dark, grim and gritty adventure? Better, you want smart and realistic action tales? Binge-watch Marvel’s “The Punisher.” A compelling protagonist, tightly written plots, what more could you want? It fits perfectly into the Marvel Netflix Universe. And the best part? Season 2 has already been approved. Title: “The Punisher” Year it began: 2017 Where it can…

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I’ve been a fan of T’Challa, the Black Panther, since I was around 10 years old. Growing up, there weren’t many Black superheroes for me to identify with. Indeed, most of the characters heavily marketed by the big comic companies were white and male. Even though T’Challa was African, rather than African-American, he still provided a powerful role model. In T’Challa, I s…

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Want to see how a comic book company can organically build an entire universe on the small screen while keeping all of the genre’s best elements? “Arrow” is the show for you! Title: “Arrow” Year it began: 2012 Where it can be seen: The CW, Netflix Who’s in it: Stephen Amell, David Ramsey, Emily Bett Rickards, Paul Blackthorne, Willa Holland, Echo Kellum, Rick G…

In this multicultural world, white people are now deathly afraid of being labeled as racist.During the so-called civil rights era, America's ruling mighty looked upon its works, and despaired at the images the media were broadcasting: black activists being set upon by dogs, arrested during peaceful protests, or killed while "resisting arrest."This, Shelby Steele argues in …

You have five days to live. And there's nothing you can do but face it.That is the central issue that motivates "Orbit: A Novel," a science fiction work by John J. Nance. "Orbit" is a refreshing change from the normal sci-fi fare, as it's not so laden down with tech-terms as to make it unreadable.Instead, it approaches things from the position of Everyman. Kip Dawson is a …

How do you document the suffering of a people, the deliberate ignorance of a nation, the unfeeling ineptitude of those sworn to help?In "Come Hell or High Water: Hurricane Katrina and the Color of Disaster," author Michael Eric Dyson answers that question in his usual blunt, take-no-prisoners style.Dyson thoughtfully -- but with obvious glee -- takes the U.S. government to…

Looking around a day care center and seeing the children engaged in games of all sorts, it is easy to understand why some parents assume that playing is all children do there.But, in fact, playing is only part of the program."A day care center helps to raise and rear the child, often spending more time with the child than the parent does," says Jennifer Vrooman, office man…

You slept through your alarm. You accidentally spilled hot coffee in your lap. The kid on the bus behind you flicked gum in your hair. The computer crashed. As you stood up to speak at the big meeting, you noticed toothpaste on your blouse.Yes, it's Friday the 13th, once again.What is it with this day? Why do so many seemingly rational people treat this day with caution, b…