The first trailer for “The Defenders” is here and it looks LIT.
Superhero fans, rejoice! Netflix has just dropped the first trailer for the new “The Defenders” series and it is as action packed as it is funny. There are a couple things that we learn from the two-and-a-half-minute-long trailer and one of them is how the team first got together. The Defenders, a team made up of Luke Cage, Jessica Jones, Iron Fist, and Daredevil, are tasked with keeping New York City from literally falling apart after threats from evil forces. One unlikely hero is Claire Temple, who is played by Rosario Dawson. Temple might only be a doctor but she plays a pivotal role in getting the team together. Specifically, we get to see how Temple brings together Iron Fist and Luke Cage after they fight each other in an alley. Apart from Dawson’s brief cameos in the trailer, “The Defenders” promises lots of action, including those hallway fights Marvel’s Netflix series appear to love.
Colombian actor John Leguizamo is raising money to crowdsource an all-Latino produced comic book series featuring all Latino and Latina superheroes. Leguizamo says he “grew up loving comic books,” but he “knew that there was no white guy in tights like Superman coming to save my ass in my neighborhood,” so he’s creating a Latino superhero of his own. Leguizamo is partnering with Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez, the artist who brought us bestselling superhero series “La Borinqueña” and is looking for more Latino artists, illustrators, producers and editors to join the team.
So far, the crowdsourcing project has raised $2k of the necessary $75k to get the project off the ground.
According to the crowdsourcing website, Seed and Spark, the premise of PhenomX’s story is that “Sometimes, when the powers that be knock you down, you have to transform and bring the system down with you.” Set in present-day New York City, PhenomX’s story begins with an illegal government project to “rehabilitate criminals” in an experimental drug trial that turns them into superpowers. Then, we meet Max Gomez who “is finally about to be released from prison with a second chance at life and fatherhood. But with growing concerns about re-entering the outside world as an ex-con, Max doesn’t know where to turn.” An FBI agent offers Max an opportunity to capture the “failed experiments,” by giving him superpowers.
Still, Max “feels like a prisoner. Secrets are still being kept from him, and his target grows stronger every moment. Watch Max as he learns that he’s more than just a statistic… he’s more than just an ex-convict… he’s more than a phenomenon… he’s PhenomX.”
Leguizamo doesn’t want to wait for Hollywood. “Holly-wouldn’t,” he says.
“I want to share with you this new proposal. We’re going to be entrepreneurs together,” Leguizamo tells a camera stationed outside a Chicago theater just before Leguizamo’s “Latin History for Morons” performance. He’s incognito, “hence the glasses and the hoodie.” Leguizamo is asking us to invite our tías and tíos to contribute to the worthy cause. “I grew up loving comic books, Spiderman, Superman, The X-Men, Sub-Mariner, Thor, but there were no Latin people. What happened? We existed! Being Latin IS a superpower, y’all!” Leguizamo says. The entire project is going to be Latin-fueled. “It’s going to be written by me, a Latin guy, and colored and drawn and penciled by all Latin folks,” Leguizamo continued. “We’re going to have Latinas with superpowers. We’re not gonna wait for Hollywood. Holly wouldn’t. Hollywhite. Forget that. We’re doing it ourselves.”
Leguizamo hopes that PhenomX inspires young Latinos to see themselves as superheroes, too.
“In today’s world, it’s incredibly important to support Latin artists,” Leguizamo writes on Seed and Spark. “I hope to use this project to not only inspire the Latin youth community but also celebrate the contributions of Latin artists to the comic book world. There is a lack of Latin representation in Hollywood, and it’s important to showcase Latin superheroes. Now, you can help me by supporting this comic book series to inspire Latinx teens.”
Every single person who makes a contribution will score swag ranging from stickers to becoming a character in the story.
For $25, you automatically receive a digital copy of the first PhenomX comic book. A $75 donation earns you an autographed copy of one of the first PhenomX comic books. Donations of $1,000 or more earn you a slice of John’s favorite New York-style pizza with John Leguizamo himself (travel not included). “If you give super money, then, I’m going to draw a character that looks like you and name a character after you,” Leguizamo says of the highest $10k donation tier listed.
Leguizamo is the Renaissance Man we need right now.
Leguizamo was born July 22, 1964, in Bogotá, Colombia. He moved to Queens, New York when he was just four years old. He is known for his roles in Hangin’ with the Homeboys (1991), Romeo + Juliet (1996) and the voice of Sid in Ice Age (2002). Most recently, Leguizamo has introduced a Broadway play, “Latin History for Morons,” and now he’s dabbling in comic books. We don’t know what you can’t do, Leguizamo. His campaign has drawn in 37 donations totaling $2,033, averaging $55 per donation. Join in on the cause by donating here.
It’s a sad reality of the world we live in that trans men and women are put in danger every day just by existing as their true selves. Besides the disproportional amounts of violence they face, many are murdered purely for being trans. In 2018 alone, advocates tracked at least 28 reported deaths of trans people due to violence. Black trans women especially are victims of this brutality but any trans person is statistically more likely to be a target of harassment than cis-gendered people.
Anew lawsuit being brought against actress Rosario Dawson and her family alleges this sort of severity against a trans person.
Twitter / @outmagazine
Dedrek Finey is a trans man who claims to have known Dawson’s family for decades. According to Finey, he was convinced back in 2017 by Dawson’s family to move to Los Angeles from New York in order to do renovations on their family’s house. At the time, he had yet to transition but opened up about being trans after the move.
Finey has filed a lawsuit against Rosario and her family claiming that the “Sin City” star repeatedly harassed him and helped to assault him. He’s suing on the grounds of assault, battery, trespass, discrimination, civil rights, and labor violation. According to the claimant, Dawson herself constantly misgendered him; referring to him with the wrong pronouns, even after being corrected. Allegedly, when Finey complained to Dawson about the misgendering, the actress replied, “Whatever. You’re a grown woman.” The actress also supposedly deadnamed Finey — meaning she called him by the name he used pre-transition.
According to the lawsuit, the hostility escalated from there into full-blown violence.
Twitter / @NBCOUT
Finey says he was living in a separate house upon Dawson’s property in 2018. In April of that year, he reports that his work hours were reduced and he was told he had to move out of the home. One day, Dawson’s mother, Isabel Celeste, allegedly knocked on his door. The visit reportedly turned violent when Celeste ripped the screen door and pulled him through it in order to punch Finey.
The lawsuit reports that Celeste stated, “You’re not so much of a man now,” while assaulting the claimant. At this point in the assault, Finey claims Dawson participated. According to the man, instead of helping, the actress walked up and pinned him to the ground so her mother could continue to punch him.
The lawsuit also claims that Finey had a video recording of Celeste threatening him but she took his phone during the assault.
Twitter / @WayneDupreeShow
He also planned on calling the police for assistance but was allegedly assaulted before he was able to make the call. The lawsuit states that Finey was able to escape into the house and call 911. Police arrived on the scene and he had to be taken to the hospital for treatment following the assault. According to Finey, he got a restraining order against Celeste. He continued to live in the house until September of 2018 when the family supposedly shut off the home’s utilities.
While neither Dawson nor her boyfriend, Senator Corey Booker, have responded to requests for comment on the lawsuit, Twitter had plenty to say about the alleged attack.
Twitter / @pankarazorel
This Twitter user reacted with frustration upon learning of the trans-phobic report. “Can I NEVER have peace,” the tweet rhetorically asked. For members and supporters of the LGBTQ community, news like this is always hard to stomach. The community receives more than it’s fair share of hostility from non-famous people so hearing that a favorite celebrity allegedly acted trans-phobic is especially upsetting.
This tweet pointed out the hypocrisy surrounding one presidential candidate’s significant other and not another’s.
Twitter / @Sker4Lyfe
In this tweet, Twitter user @Sker4Lyfe brought up an incident from earlier this year somewhat involving Kamala Harris and her husband. In October, a report about sexual assault came out of DLA Piper, a law firm that Harris’ husband is a partner at. Though the report didn’t involve her husband, Harris was asked about accusations as if she had involvement with it. Since this is the case then why, the tweet asks, hasn’t anyone in the media asked Booker about these accusations that Dawson is being directly accused of?
This tweet pointed out that even liberal people and people who are members of the LGBTQ community can be trans-phobic.
As this person suggests, those who support queer rights might not necessarily support trans people. They might not even see things like misgendering and deadnaming as an act of aggression towards trans people. Whether they are liberal or claim a queer identity themselves, people can still be hostile, violent and harmful to members of the trans community. Obviously, the statistics show that there is no storage of violence against trans men and women and we as allies and LGBTQ members must call it out when it shows itself.
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