Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.
Welcome back, superhero enthusiasts, comic collectors and fans of 1990s comics culture! We go back to the Ultraverse to witness further events from The Strangers told during the late stage of their 24-issue run as a comic book series. In the previous review, Teknight became more prominent as a member of the team as Candy/Electrocute got heavily damaged which led the Strangers to having her repaired not in just any private facility but rather in the facility of a powerful organization.
And then something happened at the end of The Strangers #21.
With those details laid down, here is a look back at The Strangers #22, published by Malibu Comics in 1995 with a story written by Steve Englehart and drawn by Paul Abrams.
The story begins inside a high-tech facility when the newly repaired Electrocute gets up and attacks her teammates Grenade (her romantic partner) and Teknight. Electrocute is acting under someone’s control. In response to Teknight’s methodical approach on absorbing electric blasts from Electrocute, Grenade warns him about the how capable NuWare is when it comes to control and execution.
Even so, Teknight continues to stand until he gets overwhelmed by the lady’s power and ends up getting paralyzed. An executive walks near Teknight and Electrocute boasting that he loves seeing his designs in action and Grenade comes in to use his power on his romantic partner…
Once again, Steve Englehart crafted another story that keeps this series fresh and fun to read. The story started with a good amount of action involving Grenade, Electrocute and Teknight. As I don’t want to spoil the plot, I can say that what happened after the action-packed opening sheds light on a new yet significant youth who wields a lot of power thanks to his father (clue: a powerful and ruthless executive who was involved not only with the Strangers but also with Mantra and Night Man). The story is very well structured and moves at a nice pace. Also I can say that the spotlight on the Strangers as a whole team was carefully balanced.
When it comes to character development, it is Grenade who clearly got a good dose of it. Apart from the usual display of his feelings towards Electrocute, this comic book dramatizes his effort to understand not only his lady and their new teammate Teknight, but also his realization about the delicate balance between being alive and being linked with technology.
The Strangers #22 (1995) is another fun-filled superhero story which served its purpose in concluding the story that started in the previous issue. It also achieved its goal of emphasizing the role of NuWare (read: corporate intrigue) and the continued relevance of a certain corporate executive that the Strangers could not just get rid of.
If you are seriously planning to buy an existing hard copy of The Strangers #22 (1995), be aware that as of this writing, MileHighComics.com shows that the near-mint copy of the comic book costs $27.
Overall, The Strangers #22 (1995) is recommended.
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Welcome back fellow Christians and music enthusiasts. In this latest edition of my Christian Music Appreciation (CMA) series, we will take a close look at another Hillsong worship song that was greatly performed by pastor Darlene Zschech during her time with them. That song is titled Shout of the King.
Now that the details have been laid down, we can take a close look at Shout of the King starting with its lyrics and followed by an examination of the holiness of the lyrics in connection with the Holy Bible…
I give You praise for You deserve it
I give You praise for what You’ve done
I give You praise for You are able
I give You praise ’til I overcome
I give You praise when the sun is shining
I give You praise in the dark of night
I give You praise when the battle rages
I give You praise ’til it works out right
The shout of the King is among us
God lives here in our praises
The shout of the King is among us
Praise Him in everything
Heaven opens as we sing Your praise
Angels join us as we praise Your name
Praise Him in everything
As you can clearly see, the word praise is often present throughout the lyrics from Verse all the way to the end. There are many expressions of the words praise as the song went on. Praise related to why the Lord deserves it all, praise in times of challenges or good times, praise for the name of the Lord and so on. The Holy Bible itself has lots of scriptures about praising God and here are some I found for you all.
Praise the LORD! Praise God in His sanctuary; Praise Him in His might firmament! Praise Him for His might acts; Praise Him according to His excellent greatness! Praise Him with the sound of the trumpet; Praise Him with the lute and harp! Praise Him with the timbrel and dance; Praise Him with stringed instruments and flutes! Praise Him with loud cymbals; Praise Him with clashing cymbals! Let everything that has breath praise the LORD! Praise the LORD!
Psalm 150:1-6 (NKJV)
Therefore I will give thanks to You, O LORD, among the Gentiles, And sing praises to Your name.
2 Samuel 22:50 (NKJV)
“He is your praise, and He is your God, who has done for you these great and awesome things which your eyes have seen.”
Deuteronomy 10:21 (NKJV)
“God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”
John 4:24 (NKJV)
At this point, we can start examining parts of the lyrics and search for their relevance to the Holy Bible starting with: I give You praise for You deserve it, I give You praise for what You’ve done, I give You praise for You are able, I give You praise ’til I overcome.
As it is already made clear in the Holy Bible, we would never have existed without God. He is the definitive creator of all life, the worlds, the universe and all the universes we have yet to discover. We Christians are mandated to praise Him, give thanks to Him and help Him spread His Word in this divided world we live in surrounded by many souls that are lost and unsaved. This is the truth that Satan does not want you to realize which explains why he uses tools to separate people from God like Communism, Marxism, political correctness, terrorism, anarchy, homosexuality, sexual immorality, feminism, idolatry, wokeness, covetousness, traditions, rituals, liberalism, abortion, social division, social justice (distorted justice), secularism, religion, atheism, socialism, racism, immorality and more. In other words, the enemy will do anything to prevent people from realizing their relationship with the Lord and stop them from praising Him. Satan does not want you to know that God is deserving, God’s creations and achievements can never be matched, God is able for He is omnipotent, and we His children who know the truth will keep praising Him not only while living in the flesh but eternally when we join Him in Heaven. By being faithful and edified under the Lord, we the children of God can easily resist Satan and make him walk away from us completely rejected and defeated Learn from the following scriptures below…
You are worthy, O Lord, To receive glory and honor and power; For You created all things, And by Your will they exist and were created.
Revelation 4:11 (NKJV)
In Him, we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace which He made to abound toward us in all wisdom and prudence, having made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His pleasure which He purposed in Himself, that in the dispensation of the fullness of the times He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both of which are in heaven and which are on earth—in Him. In Him, we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will, that we who first trusted in Christ should be to the praise of His glory.
Ephesians 1:7-12 (NKJV)
Then Jesus said to him, “Away with you, Satan! For it is written, You shall worship the LORD your God, and Him only shall you serve.”
Then the devil left Him, and behold, angels came and ministered to Him.
Matthew 4:10-11 (NKJV)
As seen in the above scriptures, God’s authority is unquestionable and untainted. In fact, His authority stands very tall permanently for He is just, loving, caring and fully moral as our source and creator. God is the Heavenly Father and Satan knows that when we are with the Lord, he will never be able to bring us down. Satan hates it when we know the truth of God’s Word and are edified under Him. Satan hates it when we follow Lord Jesus who Himself defeated the enemy more than once, and each victory proved to be significant forever. Lord Jesus redeemed humanity which sealed Satan’s permanent status as a loser and reversed the fall of humanity that Adam caused. The Lord is worthy of all our praise. Satan deserves nothing at all.
Next lines from the lyrics to analyze are as follows: The shout of the King is among us, God lives here in our praises. When the Lord talks to us, we should really listen. When He shouts, we definitely should focus on Him and respond accordingly. Learn from the holy scriptures below…
God has gone up with a shout, The Lord with the sound of a trumpet. Sing praises to God, sing praises! Sing praises to our King, sing praises!
Psalm 47:5-6 (NKJV)
For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.
1 Thessalonians 4:16 (NKJV)
Then I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, “Now salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down.”
Revelation 12:10 (NKJV)
The LORD shall go forth like a mighty man; He shall stir up His zeal like a man of war. He shall cry out, yes, shout aloud; He shall prevail against His enemies.
Isaiah 42:13 (NKJV)
So there you have it! Shout of the King is indeed a very holy song with an uncompromising focus on praising our Lord. Its lyrics really connect with the Holy Bible a lot. Musically, Shout of the King is one of the more energetic songs I saw Darlene Zschech led when she was still with Hillsong’s musicians. The drums, the electric guitars and the trumpets used combined with the great vocals by Hillsong in performances led by Zschech really made the song very upbeat from start to finish. So energetic and holy it is, Shout of the Lord is ideal to play to really stir up Christians attending Sunday worship services or a special worship event. This song is highly recommended!
Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. Sharing this Christian piece means spreading the good news of the Lord to others. It can help you save the unsaved and the lost souls out there.
Wow! It’s as if doing business is an evil thing and being a socialist and a hater of business are good things. Talk about being delusional and impulsive as a result of being brainwashed with socialism and anti-capitalism views. The truth of the matter is that socialism sucks and will continue to suck. To understand the business side of things before talking more about Wonder Woman 1984, let’s examine the state of movie theaters.
As of this writing, the movie theater operators are slowly reopening their locations and already they have spent time and money on implementing a variety of measures such as sanitation, constant cleaning, practicing social distancing, requiring moviegoers to wear facemasks and the like. At the same time, seating capacity per screen has been reduced to minimize the risk of viral infection. The reopening of cinemas not only means the resumption of their business but also the retention of the employees they still have.
Even with less than 100% of movie theaters in operation, Warner Bros. took the big risk of releasing their $200 million production Tenet which went on to gross more than $20 million in its first four days in the United States and Canada. Elsewhere, the movie raked in more than $100,000,000 in ticket sales and it has surpassed the $150,000,000 mark globally. The more movie theaters open – including the drive-in locations – the better it will be for Wonder Woman 1984 and this obviously requires time.
To have the theatrical opening of Wonder Woman 1984 moved all the way to Christmas Day is, in my honest opinion, a sensible move. Like other forms of businesses negatively affected by the pandemic, movie theaters are struggling to reshape themselves (and retain their employees somehow in order to avoid adding them to the unemployed) and get back to business. Movie studios on the other hand are struggling with what to do with their finished productions, especially the ones that cost $200,000,000+ to make (complete with the hard work of the technical crew, the creative team and the talents who worked).
Like anyone else, I love Wonder Woman (she is my favorite of all superheroes) and I also love 2017 Wonder Woman movie which I still replay on Blu-ray. Unlike other fans who lost patience, I myself am willing to wait for the new Wonder Woman movie to open in the local cinemas, especially in the IMAX cinema. I certainly do not agree with the idea that Warner Bros. should just skip all the movie theaters in favor of releasing Wonder Woman 1984 on VOD streaming services, and I have reasons.
Firstly, Wonder Woman 1984 was made with the movie theater viewing experience first and foremost. The creative team led by director Patty Jenkinseven used IMAX cameras for some scenes. While the filming of scenes for IMAX is limited in total, it is clear that Wonder Woman 1984 will look and play its very best on the gigantic screen in the IMAX theater! It is also likely that the most spectacular (or the most important) scenes filmed with IMAX captured Gal Gadot as the cinematic Wonder Woman. That being said, the visual splendor and the magnificence of big screen viewing will NEVER be matched on VOD streaming nor on the HDTV at home. I should add that the enhanced visuals that come with scenes being filmed with IMAX cameras can only be seen on the large IMAX screen, and this cannot be achieved on HDTV or on the best smartphones via streaming.
Secondly, releasing Wonder Woman 1984 directly to VOD streaming services is harmful not just to the struggling theater operators and their employees but also the economy itself. I do understand that going outside the home during the pandemic has its risks but the fact remains is that businesses around you have suffered a lot and there is a need for commerce and industry to be revived, and you can help the local and the national economy move forward again. Be mindful that many people who lost their jobs and their income are also suffering, and there is a need for businesses to be supported so that new job opportunities can be made…jobs that the unemployed badly need! Let’s face it, you can enjoy watching movies on the VOD streaming service you subscribed to and binge watch at the comfort of your home all you want but still the best place to watch is in the cinema. I can never forget the very day in 2017 I went to the local IMAX cinema to watch Wonder Woman by buying a premium movie ticket, buying popcorn and a drink, sat comfortably and watched the movie in its full greatness. I paid a lot and got tremendous value in return for the premium cinematic experience with Wonder Woman. Right now, movie theaters are struggling to recover and they badly need you to buy their tickets, snacks and drinks and enjoy the movie. It is also clear that both Warner Bros. and the movie theaters need each other, and Wonder Woman 1984 is too expensive a production to be released only on VOD streaming services.
Thirdly, still on the business side, video-on-demand streaming services are not exactly effective in helping movie producers recover the massive amounts of money spent on producing and marketing their major projects. Wonder Woman 1984 is a more expensive production than its predecessor and it is still the movie theater business model that will help it recover all the negative cost and break even (if not profit). The following are my questions to the loudmouths who ranted that Wonder Woman 1984 should be released directly to VOD streaming services only because of their impatience and other reasons: Do you seriously believe that video-on-demand will help Wonder Woman 1984’s producers and investors recover their money? If you are willing to pay a premium rate for digitally availaing Wonder Woman 1984 at all, how much are you really willing to pay? Do you seriously believe that movie theater operators and their employees should suffer only because you are so self-centered with wanting the new Wonder Woman film only on video-on-demand streaming?
Finally, this one is aimed at those who got indoctrinated with socialism and Leftist beliefs …who do you think you are to condemn Warner Bros. for corporate greed only because the studio is focused on releasing Wonder Woman 1984 first in cinemas? We are Wonder Woman fans here, right? It is the movie studio, its investors and other capitalists who pooled the financial resources together to hire Patty Jenkins, Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, Kristen Wiig, Hans Zimmer and a whole lot of other people to make Wonder Woman 1984! They did that, not your socialist partners nor your socialist idols! The least we fans can do is be thankful to the filmmakers and their capitalism partners for making the movie. As for Warner Bros., we should keep in mind that the pandemic has made it very hard for them to decide when to release the movie we have been waiting for, and for sure their top executives and strategists have struggled in ways that you cannot imagine. You seriously believe that Warner Bros. and the other movie studios did not lose any money from the months-long shutdown of the cinemas during the pandemic? What is your basis for condemning Warner Bros. for corporate greed over Wonder Woman 1984?
Oh, one more thing, do you still go to a coffee shop, availed of their coffee and WiFi and used your branded smartphone to condemn capitalism and promote socialism? Capitalists made the things that you socialists enjoyed, not to mention all the other Wonder Woman-related products like comic books, toys, action figures, clothes, souvenirs, accessories and much more!
That being said, what we Wonder Woman fans can all do right now is wait for Wonder Woman 1984 to open in cinemas this Christmas Day. I believe that the delayed movie itself will turn out great and prove to be worth the long wait…and then prove that the movie theater is still the best place to watch it.
Who knows? Wonder Woman 1984 could spark a strong revival of the movie theater business around the world and we fans can be part of that!