Khan Noonien Singh, commonly shortened to Khan, is a villain in the fictional Star Trek universe. According to backstory given in the character's first appearance, the Star Trek original series episode "Space Seed" (1967), Khan is a genetically engineered superhuman tyrant who once controlled more than a quarter of the Earth during the Eugenics Wars of the 1990s. After being revived in 2267 by the crew of the Enterprise, Khan attempts to capture the starship, but is thwarted by James T. Kirk and exiled on Ceti Alpha V to create a new civilization with his people. The character returns in the 1982 film Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, set fifteen years after "Space Seed", in which Khan escapes his imprisonment and sets out to seek revenge upon Kirk. The character was portrayed by Ricardo Montalbán in both the television episode and in the film.
Initially conceived as a brutal man of Nordic ancestry, Khan first appears as an Indian, who is both admired and reviled by the Enterprise crew. Harve Bennett, executive producer for Star Trek II, chose Khan as the villain for the film. To reflect the time spent marooned on an inhospitable world, Khan was given a costume which looked as though it was scavenged from different items and showed off Montalbán's physique. The character has been positively received by critics and fans; Khan was voted as one of the top ten greatest film villains of all time by the Online Film Critics Society. (read more...)
Unlike Lost's ensemble of characters who, according to the writers, each have good and bad intentions, the writers have said that Keamy is evil and knows it. Durand was contacted for the role after one of Lost's show runners saw him in the 2007 film 3:10 to Yuma. Like other Lost actors, Durand was not informed of his character's arc when he won the role. Throughout Durand's nine-episode stint as a guest star in the fourth season, little was revealed regarding Keamy's life prior to his arrival on the island and Durand cited this as a reason why the audience "loved to hate" his villainous character. Critics praised the writers for breaking Lost tradition and creating a seemingly heartless character, while Durand's performance and appearance were also reviewed positively. Keamy returned in the final season for a tenth appearance. (read more...)
Over the decades the character has evolved in response to changes in American culture and tastes. The books were extensively revised, beginning in 1959, largely to eliminate racist stereotypes, with arguable success. Many scholars agree that in the revision process, the heroine's original, outspoken character was toned down and made more docile, conventional, and demure. In the 1980s a new series was created, the Nancy Drew Files, which featured an older and more professional Nancy as well as romantic plots. In 2004 the original Nancy Drew Mystery Stories series, begun in 1930, was ended and a new series, Girl Detective, was launched, with an updated version of the character who drives a hybrid electric vehicle and uses a cell phone. Illustrations of the character have also evolved over time, from portrayals of a fearless, active young woman to a fearful or passive one.
Through all these changes, the character has proved continuously popular worldwide: at least 80 million copies of the books have been sold, and the books have been translated into over 45 languages. Nancy Drew has featured in five films, two television shows, and a number of popular computer games; she also appears in a variety of merchandise sold over the world.
Arbiter is a fictional ceremonial, religious, and political rank bestowed upon alien Covenant Elites in the Halo science fiction universe. In the 2004 video game Halo 2, the rank is given to a disgraced commander as a way to atone for his failures. Although the Arbiter is intended to die serving the Covenant leadership, the High Prophets, he survives his missions and the Prophets' subsequent betrayal of his kind. When he learns that the Prophets' plans would doom all sentient life in the galaxy to extinction, the Arbiter allies with the Covenant's enemies—humanity—and stops the ringworld Halo from being activated. The Arbiter is a playable character in Halo 2 and its 2007 sequel Halo 3; a different Arbiter appears in the 2009 real-time strategy game Halo Wars, which takes place 20 years before the events of the main trilogy.
The appearance of the Arbiter in Halo 2 and the change in perspective from the main human protagonist Master Chief to a former enemy was a plot twist Halo developer Bungie kept highly secret. The character's name was changed from "Dervish" after concerns that the name reinforced a perceived United States versus Islam allegory in the game's plot. Award-winning actor Keith David lends his voice to the character in Halo 2 and 3, while David Sobolov voices the Arbiter of Halo Wars.
The Arbiter has appeared in three series of action figures and other collectibles and marketing in addition to appearances in the games. Bungie intended the sudden point of view switch to a member of the Covenant as a plot twist that no one would have seen coming, but the character in particular and the humanization of the Covenant in general was not evenly received by critics and fans. Computer and Video Games derided the Arbiter's missions as "crap bits" in Halo 2. Conversely, IGN lamented the loss of the Arbiter's story in Halo 3 and missed the added dimension the character provided to the story. (read more...)
Anarky is a fictionalcharacter appearing in books published by DC Comics. Co-created by Alan Grant and Norm Breyfogle, he first appeared in Detective Comics #608 (November 1989), as an adversary of Batman. Introduced as Lonnie Machin, a child prodigy with knowledge of radical philosophy and driven to overthrow governments to improve social conditions, stories revolving around Anarky often focus on political and philosophical themes. The character, who is named after the philosophy of anarchism, primarily espouses anti-statism. Multiple social issues have been addressed whenever the character has appeared in print, including environmentalism, antimilitarism, economic exploitation, and political corruption. Inspired by multiple sources, early stories featuring the character often included homages to political and philosophical books, and referenced anarchist philosophers and theorists. The inspiration for the creation of the character and its early development was based in Grant's personal interest in anti-authoritarian philosophy and politics. However, when Grant himself transitioned to the philosophy of Neo-Tech, he shifted the focus of Anarky from a vehicle for socialist and populist philosophy, to rationalist, atheist, and free market-based thought.
Originally intended to only be used in the debut story in which he appeared, Grant decided to continue using Anarky as a sporadically recurring character throughout the early 90s, following positive reception by readers and Dennis O'Neil. The character experienced a brief surge in media exposure during the late '90s, beginning when Norm Breyfogle convinced Grant to produce a limited series based on the character. The 1997 spin-off series, Anarky, was received with positive reviews and sales, and later declared by Grant to be among his "career highlights". Batman: Anarky, a trade paperback collection of stories featuring the character, soon followed. This popular acclaim culminated, however, in a financially and critically unsuccessful ongoing solo series. The 1999 Anarky series, in which even Grant has expressed his distaste, was quickly canceled after eight issues, but not before sparking a minor controversy by suggesting Anarky was the biological son of the Joker.
Following the cancellation of the Anarky series, and Grant's departure from DC Comics, Anarky experienced a prolonged period of absence from DC publications, despite professional and fan interest in his return. This period of obscurity lasted approximately ten years, with three brief interruptions for minor cameo appearances in 2000, 2001, and 2005. In December 2008, Anarky reappeared in an issue of Robin authored by Fabian Nicieza, with the intention of ending this period of obscurity. The storyline drastically altered the character's presentation, prompting a series of responses by Nicieza to concerned readers. The character has since become a recurring character in issues of Red Robin, authored by Nicieza. (read more...)
The Tokyo Mew Mewmanga and anime series features a cast of characters designed by Mia Ikumi. The series takes place in a fictional version of Tokyo, Japan, where five adolescent girls, called Mew Mews, are infused with the DNA of endangered species to combat aliens attempting to take over the Earth. The manga series is followed by a short sequel series, Tokyo Mew Mew a la Mode, which introduces a new Mew Mew and a new threat.
The Mew Mews are led by the main character, Ichigo Momomiya, whose first task is to gather the other four Mew Mews: Mint Aizawa, Lettuce Midorikawa, Pudding Fong, and Zakuro Fujiwara. As the series progresses, Ichigo goes from having a crush on Masaya Aoyama to becoming his girlfriend while trying to hide her secret double life from him. The series antagonists include three aliens, Kish, Pie, and Tart, and their leader, Deep Blue. Originally from Earth, the aliens were forced to leave long ago due to deadly environmental changes. They have returned to kill the humans, who they feel are destroying their planet, and reclaim the planet. In a la Mode, middle school student Berry Shirayuki is introduced as the sixth Mew Mew and, in the absence of Ichigo, the temporary leader of the Mew Mews. A la Mode also introduces new set of antagonists, the Saint Rose Crusaders, a group of human teenagers with various psychic abilities with a desire to create their own utopia. Led by Duke, they make several attempts to kill Berry, eventually turning the local populace against the Mew Mews.
Ikumi's initial vision for Tokyo Mew Mew was a story called Tokyo Black Cat Girl that featured a cat-girl battling alien invaders. After the story was transitioned to a more upbeat story of five female superheroes, the character designs were redone to have a lighter, more colorful feel. The main series characters were praised for being a perfect fit for the overall story, as well as for their cute appearances. The characters introduced in a la Mode were also praised for their visual appearances, but criticized as being repeats of the original series. The character Duke was also criticized for having a design reminiscent of the white supremacy group, the Ku Klux Klan. (read more...)