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"Nero Blackstone" & "Shadow Man" - Character Inspirations

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PINNAZ    478

I found a poster in one of the Shadows of Evil screenshots which might reveal "Nero's" surname - Blackstone.

 

 

 

Nero Blackstone

https://www.callofduty.com/blackops3/zombies

Set in a fictional 1940s city, Shadows of Evil is a film-noir-inspired horror story centered around four particularly troubled individuals – the Femme Fatale, the Magician, the Cop and the Boxer – and spans an entire metropolis swathed in evil… Welcome to Morg City.


Each of the four characters awaken to a nightmarish world overrun by the undead. Each character fights to overcome confusion and amnesia – in the hope that they may piece together the events that brought them to this twisted world.

 

Shadows of Evil introduces players to the Femme Fatal, the Magician, the Cop and the Boxer – and these are not nice people. Every one of them is a lying, conniving, manipulative and selfish individual with a long and sordid history of past misdeeds.

 

The Magician played by Jeff Goldblum

Born into enormous wealth, the magician grew up surrounded by lackeys and sycophants… and a lifetime of constant praise and attention has only fueled his deeply misplaced arrogance.

 

11760108_951088521619539_400489393812314

11403262_951088714952853_141680190881998

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Shadows%20of%20Evil%20Poster_zpswnhcec3h

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And this is the image in which a found this poster ~

Black%20Ops%203%20Zombies_Shadows%20of%2

 

Zoomed in & enhanced so I could read the text ~

Nero%20Blackstone%20enhanced_zpshreoogxy

 

Text on poster ~

Quote

NERO

BLACKSTONE

 

AND HIS

SERPENTS

FROM BEYOND

 

 

Credit to MixMasterNut for this find.

 

The inspiration for Nero Blackstone possibly comes from this man ~

Harry Blackstone, Sr.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harry_Blackstone,_Sr.

Harry Blackstone (September 27, 1885 – November 16, 1965) was a famed stage magician and illusionist of the 20th century. Blackstone was born Harry Bouton in Chicago, Illinois, he began his career as a magician in his teens and was popular through World War II as a USO entertainer. He was often billed as The Great Blackstone. His son Harry Blackstone, Jr. also became a famous magician.

Blackstone was in the model of courtly, elegant predecessor magicians like Howard Thurston and Harry Kellar, and the last of that breed in America. He customarily wore white tie and tails when performing, and he traveled with large illusions and a sizable cast of uniformed male and female assistants. For a number of years he toured in the Midwest, often performing throughout the day between film showings.

Harry%20Blackstone_zpsny0sp4pn.jpg

 

 

His "Sawing a woman in half" involved an electric circular saw some three to four feet in diameter mounted on a swing-down arm. Blackstone demonstrated the efficacy of the device by sawing noisily through a piece of lumber. Then a female assistant was placed on the saw table in full view, as wide metal restraints were clamped upon her midsection. The blade whirred and appeared to pass through her body, as ripping sounds were heard, the woman shrieked, and particles were scattered by the whirring blade. When the blade stopped she, of course, rose unharmed.

Black%20Ops%203%20Zombies_Shadows%20of%2

 

 

 

In a gentler turn was his "Vanishing bird cage," an effect in which a score or more of children were invited to join him on the stage and all "put their hands on" a tiny cage holding a canary. Blackstone lowered the cage and then seemed to toss it into the air: bird and cage "disappearing" in the process to the astonishment and delight of the surprised children.

Black%20Ops%203%20Zombies_Shadows%20of%2

 

Blackstone%20The%20Worlds%20Master%20Mag

 

Preserving History, Harry Blackstone Poster, Part 1

 

Preserving History, Harry Blackstone Poster, Part 2 

 

Preserving History, Harry Blackstone Poster, Part 3 

At 0:55 he tells the story about the "Devil sitting on his shoulder whispering into his ear". 

Which is now seen in so many posters.

 

Harry Kellar

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harry_Kellar

Kellar_zpscigjx6ep.jpeg

Thurston%20Imps_zpslppcrkzp.jpg

Blackstone%20Master%20Magician_zpszjucv8

Behind%20the%20Scenes%20Comic%20Con%20Sn

 

 

 

Blackstone, the Magic Detective

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blackstone,_the_Magic_Detective

Books carrying Harry Blackstone's byline were ghostwritten for him by his friend, Walter B. Gibson, who also created, in 1941, the comic book Blackstone the Magician Detective and the 1948-49 radio series, Blackstone, the Magic Detective.

Blackstone, the Magic Detective was a 15-minute radio series which had a tie-in with several comic books. The program aired Sunday afternoons at 2:45pm on the Mutual Broadcasting System from October 3, 1948, until March 26, 1950.

Gibson also created EC Comics' Blackstone the Magician Detective Fights Crime in 1947. The comic book series continued as Timely Comics' Blackstone the Magician (#2) and Blackstone the Magician Detective (#3, #4). The character of Rhoda Brent, Blackstone's assistant in the comics, was carried over into the radio series.

Blackstone47_zps4qi6ol1d.jpg

 

 

Walter B. Gibson

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walter_B._Gibson

Walter Brown Gibson (September 12, 1897 – December 6, 1985) was an American author and professional magician, best known for his work on the pulp fiction character The Shadow. Gibson, under the pen-name Maxwell Grant, wrote "more than 300 novel-length" Shadow stories, writing up to "10,000 words a day" to satisfy public demand during the character's golden age in the 1930s and 1940s.

Gibson wrote more than a hundred books on magic, psychic phenomena, true crime, mysteries, rope knots, yoga, hypnotism, and games. He served as a ghost writer for books on magic and spiritualism by Harry Houdini, Howard Thurston, Harry Blackstone, Sr., and Joseph Dunninger. Gibson wrote the comic books and radio drama Blackstone, the Magic Detective. starring a fictionalized version of Harry Blackstone.

 

The Shadow

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Shadow

The Shadow is a collection of serialized dramas, originally in 1930s pulp novels, and then in a wide variety of media. Details of the title character have varied across various media, but he is generally depicted as a crime-fighting vigilante with psychic powers posing as a "wealthy, young man about town". One of the most famous adventure heroes of the twentieth century, The Shadow has been featured on the radio, in a long-running pulp magazine series, in comic books, comic strips, television, serials, video games, and at least five motion pictures.

Gibson initially fashioned the character as a man with villainous characteristics, who used them to battle crime, and in this was archetypal of the superhero, complete with a stylized imagery, a stylized name, sidekicks, supervillains, and a secret identity. Clad in black, The Shadow operated mainly after dark, burglarizing in the name of justice, and terrifying criminals into vulnerability before he or someone else gunned them down. The character was a film noir antihero in every sense; Gibson himself claimed the literary inspirations were Bram Stoker's Dracula and Edward Bulwer-Lytton's "The House and the Brain".

Shadow_Death_From_Nowhere_zpspvkf3vmy.jp

1973_11_shadow_01_kaluta_zpsrm4y2wp2.jpg

The%20Shadow%20-%20Mighty%20Master%20of%

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the-shadow-knows-1920x1080-full-hd_zps3x

 

Harry Dresden

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harry_Dresden

Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden is a fictional detective and wizard. He was created by Jim Butcher and is the protagonist of the contemporary fantasy series The Dresden Files. The series blends magic and hardboiled detective fiction. In addition to the fifteen The Dresden Files novels, he has appeared in fifteen short stories, as well as a limited series comic and an unlimited series comic. He was also adapted into a character by the same name for the TV series version of the novel series, also called The Dresden Files.

Harry Dresden is a wizard who works as a supernatural private investigator in Chicago, dealing with paranormal crimes and consulting for the Chicago Police Department. He is named after three different stage magicians — Harry Houdini, Harry Blackstone, Sr., and David Copperfield.

Deviantart

dresden_and_the_denarian_by_dsillustrati

tumblr_nqlnq8e3cG1tme3dco7_1280_zpscdnio

Black%20Ops%203%20Zombies_Shadows%20of%2

 

 

So I went completely down a rabbit hole here and it's kind of off-topic from what I imagine the game will be about. But I'm pretty confident all of these spun off characters are the inspiration for NERO BLACKSTONE!

 

 

Edit ~

Going to add this Mob of the Dead quote from Al 'Weasel' Arlington -

 

Quote

"I toured the dustbowl with the Circus for 6 Months, the Great Magnifico had a Magic Cabinet alot like this Box"

 

 

The quote is titled - vox_plr_3_wpck_snipe_d_3

(This refers to getting a sniper rifle from the mystery box)

 

And we know what happens when you get a Sniper Rifle & look through the scope on the roof -

zm_al_wth_zombie_c.thumb.jpg.c8e4fb16622

 

 

==============================

 

 

In-Game poster & Magician's Weekly Magazine Cover

 

To my surprise, it is not there and the room has been slightly changed since that promo pic. I was very disappointed as I thought they had completely removed Nero's surname due to copyright or defamation reasons and this poster would not exist at all.

 

But, It is found within the Subway rift, still, the surname has been removed. But it is the same poster.

 

 

Also found in the Footlight District around the Newspaper stand are copies of "Magician's Weekly", which have the name "Nero Blackstone" on the cover. (FINALLY - CONFIRMED!!!) This magazine cover is in the Prologue video but again, the cover is different & it just says "Nero's career up in smoke".

 

Here are the Screenshots taken from in-game.

 

 

 

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Nero Blackstone? Oren Whitegem? Thats a really cool name, blackstone, I wonder if it means anything.

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GRILL    258

I'm guessing the "serpents from beyond" will maybe be that odd power we caught a glimpse of in the reveal trailer - the one with the snakes coming from you?

 

213c530d1f5a21ab759f2b3cb274b0d5.gif

 

Then again at the point in trailer, there is a different voice then Jeff Goldblum's talking - however it could easily be just a soundclip to go over the footage.

 

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I'm guessing the "serpents from beyond" will maybe be that odd power we caught a glimpse of in the reveal trailer - the one with the snakes coming from you?

 

213c530d1f5a21ab759f2b3cb274b0d5.gif

 

Then again at the point in trailer, there is a different voice then Jeff Goldblum's talking - however it could easily be just a soundclip to go over the footage.

 

The Cop is that monster or rampage mode in the trailer, its just something like a power up or something of that nature. The serpents could relate to all this tentacle stuff they have been showing like in the poster and in map.

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MixMasterNut    131

I believe Nero Blackstone may be historically connected to the famous magician, Harry Blackstone Sr., who was famous for "sawing a woman in half" illusions.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harry_Blackstone,_Sr.


220px-Harry_Blackstone.jpg

Just compare that one with the Nero poster.  The resemblance is uncanny...

11403262_951088714952853_141680190881998

- Mix

Knows All!  ;)

Edited by MixMasterNut
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PINNAZ    478

You're a Legend Mix!

 

OP Updated

 

So I've found 3 or 4 characters that are a spin-off from Harry Blackstone. Incredible when you combine them all you pretty much get the BO3 Zombies character NERO!

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What a fascinating read, it seems like there truly is a connection between  Nero and Harry Blackstone. Once again loving the comic book influence on Treyarch's part in zombies, too. Though I do find it funny to see The Shadow yet again as pretty much having some sort of influence over just about everything nowadays.

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The posters with the devils talking to him on the shoulder? Theres no way its a coincidence, this is actually mind blowing. I wonder if it means anything like if the other characters relate to real people?

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NaBrZHunter    491

Wow, the expansion of that post...the part about The Shadow is right on. Wow.

Just found this tagline for The Shadow:

"Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men?"

 

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Wow, the expansion of that post...the part about The Shadow is right on. Wow.

Just found this tagline for The Shadow:

"Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men?"

 

Interesting. But who is it talking about?

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NaBrZHunter    491

Wow, the expansion of that post...the part about The Shadow is right on. Wow.

Just found this tagline for The Shadow:

"Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men?"

 

 

Interesting. But who is it talking about?

Based on what I'm reading, he uses his psychic powers against criminals, even muddying their thoughts so that he can be around them and they won't notice him, like the Fr. Brown Mystery 'The Invisible Man'. Perhaps this will be a part of the EE-overcoming his psychosis. 

"The introduction from The Shadow radio program "Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? The Shadow knows!", spoken by actor Frank Readick Jr., has earned a place in the American idiom. These words were accompanied by an ominous laugh and a musical theme,"

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I had too I am sorry. Maybe there is gonna be some plot twist where Nero has actually manipulated the lives of all the other characters in the map and that is why they are evil.

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NaBrZHunter    491

Holy crap, guys...it was here all along. 

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=sDTquiIB3vU

 

 

The thumbnail even looks like the Shadow Man. What in the hell is this and how did you find it?

It IS the Shadow Man! I'm a little confused as to whether @MixMasterNut or @PINNAZ is responsible for pointing out The Shadow, but after I saw him in Pinnaz' post, I started research this and found it almost instantly. 

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I'm not entirely sure how much of a connection there is between The Shadow and the Shadow Man, other than in name and seemingly appearance. The Shadow is most notable for actually inspiring Batman more so than anything else, and is generally considered as the first of the anti-heroes. I already had previous knowledge of The Shadow but never thought it too relevant. I could be wrong once the map comes out or we get more information, but still.

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I'm not entirely sure how much of a connection there is between The Shadow and the Shadow Man, other than in name and seemingly appearance. The Shadow is most notable for actually inspiring Batman more so than anything else, and is generally considered as the first of the anti-heroes. I already had previous knowledge of The Shadow but never thought it too relevant. I could be wrong once the map comes out or we get more information, but still.

Read the video description too, I am gonna judge it when I listen to it tomorrow though.

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I'm not entirely sure how much of a connection there is between The Shadow and the Shadow Man, other than in name and seemingly appearance. The Shadow is most notable for actually inspiring Batman more so than anything else, and is generally considered as the first of the anti-heroes. I already had previous knowledge of The Shadow but never thought it too relevant. I could be wrong once the map comes out or we get more information, but still.

 

Read the video description too, I am gonna judge it when I listen to it tomorrow though.

I've heard and read some Shadow already, I don't know a whole lot about his history in the comics and such, which if there was any connection it would more than likely lie in the comics instead of the radio broadcasts, but I still don't see much connection beyond the name and silhouette.

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NaBrZHunter    491

I'm not entirely sure how much of a connection there is between The Shadow and the Shadow Man, other than in name and seemingly appearance. The Shadow is most notable for actually inspiring Batman more so than anything else, and is generally considered as the first of the anti-heroes. I already had previous knowledge of The Shadow but never thought it too relevant. I could be wrong once the map comes out or we get more information, but still.

 

Read the video description too, I am gonna judge it when I listen to it tomorrow though.

I've heard and read some Shadow already, I don't know a whole lot about his history in the comics and such, which if there was any connection it would more than likely lie in the comics instead of the radio broadcasts, but I still don't see much connection beyond the name and silhouette.

Give it a full listen. I think it will blow your mind. I think we have made a monumental discovery. 

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It certainly seems like the design of the Shadow Man was definitely influenced by The Shadow, that much is for certain. I guess I will have to listen to find out more, it's just that old timey radio broadcasts like that have always kind of annoyed me for some reason. I never really liked the over-exaggeration of everything and, well so much more. That's why I looked more into his comics than radio broadcasts before.

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Can anyone find a transcript for some of the Shadows dramas? Like this is so close to how the Shadow Man is, there is so many correlations.

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PINNAZ    478

@Nightmare Voyager & @NaBrZHunter

 

The connection between Harry Blackstone & "The Shadow" is Walter Gibson. 

He was the Author who wrote both the Blackstone & The Shadow Comic Books. He was a "writaholic". 

 

Check the link to him in the OP

 

1973_11_shadow_01_kaluta.thumb.jpg.61a2a95264_20131206162743_large.thumb.jpg.df9

 

This is all I can find ATM regarding The Shadow radio transcripts

 

Shadow Radio Episodes - MP3 Streams

https://archive.org/details/RkoOrsonWelles-TheShadow-RadioRecodings

 

Episode List

http://library.syr.edu/digital/guides/s/StreetAndSmith/shadow.htm

 

Some Radio Transcripts

http://www.simplyscripts.com/radio_gz.html#S

 

The Shadow - A Short Radio History

http://www.old-time.com/sights/shadow.html

 

the-shadow-knows-1920x1080-full-hd.thumb

Edited by PINNAZ
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