NERDS AROUND TOWN

Nerds Around Town: Next Iron Man, Jason Bourne TV show and big Batman news

ART BY JESUS RODRIGUEZ

Born with a comic book in one hand and a remote control in the other, Cory DLG is the talent of Conroe's very own Nerd Thug Radio and Sports. Check out the podcast replay of the FM radio show at www.nerdthugradio.com!

Hey Nerds!

Welcome to Wednesday, I hope things are going great for everybody and today's the day you crush your week.

GOOD DEED OF THE DAY

AICF and Mark Clayton Scholarship Golf Tournament, it's one part golf tournament and one part scholarship fund. I mean, it feels self explanatory. #NerdsUnite

TREADSTONE

USA Network occasionally has some great television projects so I usually pay attention when they announce or roll out something. Well this one fell under my radar somehow but it sounds fascinating. It's in development and it's called Treadstone. If that sounds familiar, it's the name of the program that created Jason Bourne in that movie franchise. So this sounds great, the idea of a show about the program making super soldiers/assassins is fascinating, there's so much you could do with a show like this. Everything from government intrigue to amnesic soldiers, to rogue agents and regulatory agencies, the stories and the drama write themselves. I'm very hopeful for the show and I'd love to see where it goes and when it comes out. This one is now officially on the watch list.

THE BIG CHANGE

All indications is that Tom King, the current writer of Batman who has been on an epic run telling a massive Batman arc for what was originally going to be around 100 issues. Allegedly, his big finale has had to be pre-approved by Warner Bros and not just the typical DC comics editorial approvals. They moved it to it's own mini series, presumably to give it more pomp and opportunity but we'll see I suppose. I'm curious what the change actually will be. I think it's going to be Batman and The Catwoman actually getting married and becoming a permanent duo. Part of the whole story has been about who is Bruce Wayne and who is Batman, and I think Bruce finding happiness at one time meant the death of Batman. Now Tom King has put Batman in a place where it doesn't. We'll see if I'm crazy or not.

THE ENDORSEMENT OF IRON MAN

Robert Downey Jr did something interesting the other day, he was at a media event of some kind and he expressed interest in having Riri Williams introduced into the Marvel Universe to fill the boots of the now deceased Tony Stark. This is the kind of endorsement and support a character like Ironheart needs to make it into the MCU, having the proud film papa (RDJ) of Marvel films saying that what the world needs in the empty shoes of Tony Stark is Riri Williams. I would love this so much. She's a great character in her own right, and she has such opportunity in the films for growth and is a solid young character that could really grow into her own franchise.

NOT THAT YOU ASKED

Marvel's been making these great little docu-minis about the big important moments in the history of the X Men and I am freaking stoked for these things. They are awesome and they sort of tell these stories perfectly and set up this big X Men story that is starting next month. I think it's going to be huge, Hickman has been telling these massive crazy stories for a little while and I am so pumped to see where it all goes next. This thing feels MASSIVE, I can't wait for next month!

I'm going to jump out and wish you guys a great Wednesday and remind everyone to be kind to each other and try a little harder to have a great day! I'm coming back Thursday and we'll be bringing more good times your way.

Feel free to check out my digital short story The Wilson House or buy a shirt from Side Hustle Ts where some proceeds help people struggling with cancer or listen to Nerd Thug Radio. Thoughts, complaints, events and comments can be sent to corydlg@gmail.com.

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Watt shocked fans with a surprise Twitter announcement. Composite image by Jack Brame.

We're not sure when Houston will erect its own Mt. Rushmore for sports legends, but we're quite certain that J.J. Watt, who announced his retirement on Tuesday, December 27, and his chiseled countenance will one day jut from the rocky sculpture.

A no-brainer for the NFL Hall of Fame and arguably the greatest player to ever don a Houston Texans uniform (the other being the quiet great Andre Johnson), Watt broke the news on social media, where he posted heartwarming photos of he, wife Kealia, son Koa, and his family.

He stunned the football world — and fans — with this simple message and those family photos taken after his current team the Arizona Cardinals lost to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers:

Koa’s first ever NFL game. My last ever NFL home game. My heart is filled with nothing but love and gratitude. It’s been an absolute honor and a pleasure.

For many in Houston, it's still a bit surreal to see Justin James Watt — the NFL superstar drafted in the first round in 2011 by the Texans — in Arizona. (A pick that put this publication on the national map for all the wrong reasons with an embarrassing hot take).

After an understandable but still bittersweet release in February 2021, Watt made headlines by signing with the Cardinals, a move many applauded, given the Texans' downward trajectory.

Renowned for his relentless motor, Navy SEAL-type work ethic, team-first approach, and straight-up bulldozing and game wrecking, Watt quickly became a one-man nightmare for opposing coaches and players. Even Hollywood jumped on the WattWagon, with Arnold Schwarzenegger calling Watt a future action star and offering some motivation after a big playoff loss.

His Pick 6 play during the Texans' first-ever playoff game, where he batted down a pass from Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton and rumbled in for a touchdown, not only served as a terrifying calling card for the rookie, but would later inspire one his many nicknames: "J.J. Swat."

He would soon become one of only three players in NFL history to win at least three AP NFL Defensive Player of the Year Awards, in 2012, 2014, and 2015. In 2014, he made such a splash that he came in second overall for NFL MVP, a rare feat for even the best defensive players.

His stats are nothing short of Hall of Fame-ready. He leads the NFL in tackles for loss (172), quarterback hits (281), multi-sack games (26) and sack yards (713.5), while ranking second in sacks (101.0). In 2020, Watt, who led the NFL in sacks twice (2012 and 2015), became the fourth-fastest player in NFL history to total 100.0 sacks, doing so in just his 120th career game, per team stats.

As the NFL Network notes, Watt will retire as only of three players in NFL history to win Defensive Player of the Year three times. Add to that his five first-team All-Pro honors, five Pro Bowl trips, and his status as a two-time NFL sack leader (his 74.5 sacks over that span of time are the second-most since 1982.)

But for all his numbers, perhaps the most significant for No. 99 is $41.6 million: the amount he raised in 2017 for Hurricane Harvey relief — the largest crowd-sourced fundraiser in history. What started as a simple ask for help after the storm became a runaway, feel-good charitable moment across the country — a testament to Watt's superstar power and his ability to influence the public and raise awareness.

One part single-man football army, one part Captain America, Watt evolved into the epitome of the athlete doing it right — on the field and off (even his "Dream Big. Work Hard." Twitter bio is a simple lesson for young athletes everywhere), deftly navigating the intersection of sports and pop culture. Flashing his boyish grin and monstrous biceps, he was a natural fixture on local and national TV commercials, and a viral sensation with ominous warnings to opponents, like this scary "ya mess with me..." declaration in 2014.

Not since Earl Campbell has Houston seen an NFL player put his team and city on his broad shoulders. At six-foot-four and 280 pounds, Watt is a literal and figurative Houston giant, one who cemented all-time hero status with deeds over words, giving over taking, and always being gracious to those across the world who adored him.

The 33-year-old husband, father, and sports powerhouse may be calling it a career in Arizona, but he'll always be a Houstonian — and one of the greatest pro athletes to ever call the city home. Here's hoping if baby Koa Watt elects a career in pro football, he gets a call from Houston on draft night.

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