Posts tagged #maos

Coming in October: The Ghostbusters Ectomobile Owner's Workshop Manual and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season Four Declassified

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It's a busy October for Troy Benjamin-penned book releases! Coming up in a little more than a month, Ghostbusters and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. fans can look forward to two new exhaustive volumes to read on those crisp fall evenings with the Ghostbusters Ectomobile Owner's Workshop Manual and Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season Four Declassified.

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Ghostbusters Ectomobile

Owner's Workshop Manual

Go under the hood of the Ghostbusters’ iconic car and discover the secrets of the team’s ghoul-trapping gadgets with this comprehensive users manual for Ecto-1 and the equipment it carries.

Discover the secrets of the Ghostbusters’ iconic specter-smashing automobile, Ecto-1, with this comprehensive owner’s workshop manual. Along with a detailed breakdown of Ecto-1’s capabilities and exclusive cutaway images that show the car’s souped-up engine and onboard ghost-tracking equipment, the book also focuses on the Ghostbusters’ portable tools of the trade, including proton packs, ghost traps, and PKE meters. The book also looks at various models of Ecto-1, including the Ecto-1A from Ghostbusters II and the version of Ecto-1 seen in 2016’s Ghostbusters: Answer the Call. Featuring commentary from familiar characters, including Ray Stantz, Peter Venkman, and Jillian Holtzmann, Ghostbusters: Ectomobile: Owner’s Workshop Manual is the ultimate guide to the Ghostbusters’ legendary vehicles and the ghost-catching equipment the cars haul from one job to the next.


Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Season Four Declassified

New top-secret details on Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season Four await in this keepsake volume! While ex-agent Daisy Johnson tracks down threats to her fellow Inhumans, former S.H.I.E.L.D. Director Phil Coulson is tracking her - and new player Ghost Rider is hot on both their trails. And the intrigue only heats up: With Life Model Decoys infiltrating S.H.I.E.L.D.'s ranks, who can Coulson trust? The world of S.H.I.E.L.D. continues to evolve, hurtling toward an astonishing Season Four conclusion that will leave our team's lives barely recognizable. This incredible new volume showcases never-before-seen photography, production-design details and exclusive behind-the-scenes information and interviews with cast and crew. The events of Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s fourth season will rock the characters you know and love to their core. Don't miss a single detail!

A Conversation with Author Troy Benjamin at The Marvel Report!

Ming-Na Wen (and Arthur) showing of the first season Declassified book! (Photo Courtesy Ming-Na Wen's Twitter)

Ming-Na Wen (and Arthur) showing of the first season Declassified book! (Photo Courtesy Ming-Na Wen's Twitter)

With great thanks to Lauren at The Marvel Report, I recently engaged in a fun conversation about the process behind writing the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Declassified books, specifically Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season Three Declassified (on shelves and in stores now, go buy it - it's fun)!

Here's a small sample of the interview along with a link to check out the full article!

Walk us through your writing process: are you on set during filming? Do you have to wait to see what happens when the episodes air? Do you get to visit the set and conduct interviews during filming season?
Step one: procrastinate. Step two: panic. Just kidding to my amazing editors Jeff and Sarah, I promise I’m working hard! The first step is getting the scripts and reading them over with a fine-tooth comb, then looking at the schedule and seeing when key moments or set pieces are being filmed. Then I’ll go on set and observe as much as I can. I like to be a fly on the wall and just see how things are done, while also taking notes as I discover things happening. I’ll be writing both the episode synopses and the behind the scenes entries as we go and occasionally getting some one on one interviews to capture some thoughts in the moment. Because of the nature of filmmaking, things change and are constantly fluid so I definitely watch the network aired episodes multiple times and make changes as necessary. Depending on the schedule of everyone involved, I like to do several waves of interviews so that I get thoughts in the moment, then with a little bit of distance, then at the end of the season looking back on everything as a whole.

Give the full article a read at The Marvel Report here!

JoBlo Review of "MAOS: Season One Declassified"

(Awesome image with Lola cameo by the good folks at

At risk of patting myself on the back, during a regular visit to, I caught a review of the Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season One Declassified book that made me so damn happy that I had to share.


While the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season One Declassified is equally beautiful in design and execution, it is not a mere art book. With Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. delivering over 20 hours of Marvel goodness, this book serves more as an episode guide for the freshman season. The opening chapters give a background on the origin of the series with comic book history for the organization. There is also a nice section on the return of Phil Coulson and how Clark Gregg's portrayal has permeated the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Each chapter covers an episode of the season, giving a synopsis of the plot, key easter eggs you may have missed, and even the running behavioral themes from each character that you may have missed on first viewing. The biggest perk of this book is learning all of the Marvel Comics references that were peppered through each episode. We may have seen the character references and appearances from Deathlok and Graviton, but there were numerous other ones you may have missed.

In addition, almost every episode comes with a schematic, map, or diagram of a key scene from that episode. These are very cool treats for fans of the show as they can both see how the show developed these intricate scenes as well as a nice way to delve deeper into the series. The layout fo the book acts as if it is a S.H.I.E.L.D. computer, so everything appears encoded and gives the impression that the reader is accessing this top secret database of information.

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. got a lot of criticism for having an unbalanced debut season. While it didn't quite find its legs until the final half dozen episodes, this book supports that the showrunners and producers had a definite idea of where they wanted the show to go. There are few hints at where the upcoming second season my go, but if they plan to put one of these books out every season, it would be well worth the investment for fans.

In Stores Now: Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season One Declassified

Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season One Declassified - published by Marvel - in all its glory.

I was sitting having lunch during a break on the set of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. with three of the amazing Marvel folks that work on the show, Megan Thomas Bradner, Samantha Thomas and Emma Fleischer. As often happens on a film set, the conversation turned existential and we started talking about things that we've always wanted to do in our lives.

As a kid growing up in Franktown, Colorado my only exposure to the behind the scenes of films and TV were the short segments on Entertainment Tonight, Scott Patrick's occasional Hollywood One-on-One show that aired at one in the morning on KUSA, and the amazing "Making Of" books that were readily available at the library. Lengthy love letters to films that poured over every detail, gave you glimpses at concept art, behind the scenes photos, deleted scenes, and storyboards that gave you a slice of what it was like to be a part of the production. I probably still hold the record for most times Alan Arnold's Once Upon a Galaxy: A Journal of the Making of Empire Strikes Back was checked out from the Parker Public Library. Don Shay and Jody Duncan's Making of Jurassic Park was a volume that read cover to cover more times than I could count on family road trips. I still guard a copy of Making Ghostbusters as if it were my birth certificate. And J.W. Rinzler's amazing Making Of books for the Star Wars trilogy as of late have been absolutely outstanding.

So, in that moment at lunch, I mentioned that I'd always wanted to write making of books like those I had grown up reading. I don't know where it came from. Like Ray Stantz says, "it just popped in there." But apparently those three amazing Marvel execs took note, and several weeks later they had vouched for me and helped me embark on my first adventure as a Making Of book author.

My wife was kind enough to photograph me like Christmas morning when the final copy arrived via FedEx on 7/11/14.

In the introduction of the book, you'll read that I had the pleasure of chronicling one of the most welcoming and familial sets on which I've ever had the pleasure of working. One of the absolutely enduring things about some film sets is that a bond is created with those that work on the show and no matter what the challenges are, that warm kindness never fades. Long days and late nights didn't stop many from always greeting me with a smile and a handshake or a chuck on the shoulder. You often hear people speak of their sets feeling like a family, but this is one that it's the absolute truth.

What resulted with the book is a cool hybrid between an episode guide and analysis, behind the scenes, and a reference book that makes me immensely proud. My hope is that it gives fans old and new a background on the series' origins, some insight that helps them see the series through the writers room's eyes, and that it's something that can be read and re-read as many times as I tore through that Making of Jurassic Park book. Marvel always does such an incredible job with their Art Of books, that I can only hope this is a fitting companion to those awesome compilations.

In the Acknowledgements, there were far too many people to thank to list. The amazing editors that were patient and kind probably would have flogged me for trying. Those that championed for me, that helped me out by sending me photos and information, who spent huge chunks of time in the middle of trying to finish out the tail end of a whirlwind first season's worth of episodes to sit down and conduct interviews for the book with me. Here's just a handful of those names of people who I owe an enormous debt to for so many reasons, and whose book this truly is regardless of who it says wrote it (and apologies to any that I've left out still):

Sabrina Arnold, Scott Bauer, Jeffrey Bell, John Bernstein, Thomas Boucher, Megan Thomas Bradner, Garry A. Brown, Sarah Brunstad, Katie Carroll, "Chewie", Marc Christie, Gary D'Amico, D.J. Doyle, Allen Easton, Sarah Halley Finn, Emma Fleischer, Brent Fletcher, Ann Foley, Blair Foord, Shalisha Francis, Kenn Fuller, Tanner Gill, Tamara Hunter, Kyle Jewell, Rafe Judkins, George Kitson, Mark Kolpack, Harmony Kummer, Brian Kwan, Lauren LeFranc, Jeph Loeb, Lee Malin, Geoffrey Mandel, Bear McCreary, Gregory Melton, Monica Owusu-Breen, Denise Anderson Poore, Corey Reeser, Greg Rementer, Nelson Ribeiro, Erin Shade, Arune Singh, Daniel Spilatro, Sonya Strich, Samantha Thomas, Aiyana Trotter, Joe Quesada, John Vertrees, Jed Whedon, Joss Whedon, Maurissa Tancharoen Whedon, Maileen Williams, Jeff Youngquist, Paul Zbyszewski and so many others including the amazing cast who was so patient with me, that it's not even funny.

The truth is, I had the time of my life working on this book. For me, having that volume on my shelf will remind me of the amazing time that I had and the incredible people that I met in the process. I'm so tremendously grateful to have been a small part of everything, and can't wait to take all that I've learned from them into whatever the next adventure may bring.