Saturday, April 28, 2018
This is the ten year culmination of what we have been building up to. For some actors this means they have become very comfortable in their roles.With many of the actors contracts running up we knew going into this things were going to change, which translates to characters were going to die. Before we get into the meat of things in that regard, which can't be the elephant in the room because I think it is what gave audiences the strongest reactions, lets address that is what we are going to talk about at some point. So rather than shouting spoilers and being overly sensitive to your needs in that regard the fact of the matter is if you waited ten years for this and still haven't seen the movie by the time you are reading this, then it was much of a priority to you in the first place so who cares what gets spoiled or not.
Here I weigh things heavily against the comics, since this is a comic book blog not a movie blog. They pulled from various incarnations of the Infinity Gauntlet Saga. Obviously since the Black Order is a more recent invention. There were big difference in the story due to the fact people like Sliver Surfer and Adam Warlock are not involved. Mar-vell is coming and being played by Jude Law, but that is not where we are when we get to this film. The first device they use is having Thanos first whip up on Thor , Hulk and Loki to establish what kind of threat he is. This is the only real appearance of the Hulk as Banner is impotent to become him in this regard for the bulk of the movie also meaning they faked us out with fake trailers since the scene with the Hulk running behind them on Wakanda never happens.
The stars of this movie are really Thor, Dr. Strange and Scarlet Witch. Iron - Man has some moments but like Thanos says he does a lot of work for just a drop of blood. Spider -man is out powered holding his own better against the Black Order than Thanos. The Guardians of the Galaxy have some great moments with Thor and Mantis is more fleshed out. What what do Captain America and Black Widow do? Less than Vision thats for sure. Black Panther reaffirms the fact when he is not the sole super hero in the room, he falls back to being next to useless. He did very little in this movie and nothing against Thanos. In fact it was Thor who rescued Wakanda. Wakanda for ever held less weight as it was more "Wakanda for the next twenty minutes" or "Wakanda until we need a Nordic god to save us". Captain America did not do much more , but contributed more when it came time to throw down , being able to hold his own against Proxima Midnight, when both Black Widow and Shuri were getting their butts kicked by her later.
Dr. Strange should have had Thanos on the ropes midway into the movie. Scarlet Witch was able to hold him back with one hand. As a bad guy Thanos was one of the better ones to grace the screen. Not as clever as Loki, but more complex than he was in the comics. The only two complaints that are coming from the movie are the end. Who died and the general ignorance of people going into it not realizing this was only the first half, The Black Panther death got under the skins of some. Mot only did he get killed at the box office by this movie , but he got killed on screen. I think this took the gas out of the hype machine, I would prefer to have lost Scarlet Witch, Spider-man and Dr. Strange, but if that's how things went , it defied my expectations, so I am fine with it if this is a permanent death. I'll lend my theories on how they could work around this in the future in another entry, but right now this is what we got. I think Dr. Strange and Scarlet Witch certainly went out on a high note. Sure I could have used more Hulk. but they are juggling lots of pawns and I am fine with the Hulk not being in it at all as he is more of a loner , but oh well. This is one of the better Marvel movies for sure.
Tuesday, March 20, 2018
It is not only wishful thinking for the Comic Book Resources review to call the second season of Jessica Jones a gift to women , but warped thinking. While there is echoes of the #metoo phenomena in the story line the directors insist this was a coincidence and it had been made way before that. So that leaves us with a heavily female cast who are addicts, alcoholics, whores, backstabbers, murderers and the worst of humanity be it male or female. Jones herself was made less likable. He angst worked well in the first season and alright in the train wreck that was Defenders. The best thing about this season might have been Whizzer or the wink to the Ringleader, though both resembled their comic personas little. Aside from that even Foggy Nelson didn't make it feel that rooted in the Marvel Universe. The reason for this is also the main crux of this season's bad guy.
The first season stood out as it was the first time we had really seen a villain with this kind of power set. Not only was Killgrave charismatic in ways Micheal B Jordan's praised villain failed at , but aside from Loki, we had not seen one this devious. Here they pulled one out of their ass that doesn't even exist rather than pulling from the deep treasure trove of the comics. We got her mom. Whose powers were just amplified version of Jessica's falling back to the mirror image cliche the movies are stuck in. If they wanted to do that they could have at least used Titania. Speaking of a gift to women, having a mom with no qualms about beating the shit out of her daughter is certainly something for women to aspire to. But she was on the top of the worst humans list. This is not a bad place to be for a villain, but , it would have been more interesting if Jessica had gone in to see a court ordered shrink and it turned out to be Moonstone.They could have stuck with the weapon x like we got our powers all the wrong way theme and worked in Jessica Drew. Drew getting her start as a villain could have worked.
Then there is still no Hell-Cat when this season would have made the most sense. Walker also became less likable this season. The story much like that of Luke Cage felt like it was stretched thin over the course of the 13 episodes and that they ran out of things to say midway into it. The ghost of Killgrave was a neat touch that disappeared . I think the fact Jessica Jones was never meant to be a headliner shows in this season as they milked the character for everything she is worth when not in the Avengers or with Luke Cage. Black Panther's directors should take not of this going into a sequel as they blew their wad on the first movie as well. This season was still a little better than the first season of Luke Cage or Iron Fist, but then you are saying of all the rotten fruit this one is drawing the least flies.
I has taken me some time to get this done as comics have been less than inspiring except for the return of the Hulk in No Surrender and the news that Sentry is getting his own book again. So here is a look at some of the books from the first quarter. Marvel is beginning to do a lot better in 2018, here is a look at some titles of not mostly for better the worst one was ...Black Panther 169
Complaints about the legacy numbering systems is it shows white character like Captain America are at 697 issues where Black Panther is at 169, well when you are a supporting character in your own book it probably means you are a better supporting character than a lead, which is why his movie doesn't bode well. He started as a supporting character in Fantastic Four. The 169th issue finds the focus on his two lesbian body guards. He gets one panel and yet another comic where the cover has nothing to do with what is inside. If you were to spend 3.00 on this in a comic book store you should be pissed.
Captain Marvel 168
This was almost as bad as Black Panther, space opera that was a jumble, we had Sasquatch shooting guns like Chewbacca. The Alpha Flight is getting butchered as her side kicks. Carol is lost and this book lacks direction.
All New Wolverine 30
The common theme is too many guest stars are crammed into each issue. I hate the way Laura is being drawn.Hopefully this arc is over and the book will get better, as long as they switch artists.
Forced to choose between this and the Jean Grey book I chose this one as two books re out of hand. She says good by to the Phoenix force, guess we will see where this goes for better or worse.
Amazing Spider Man - 794
It wasn't the worst issue but Scorpio from the Zodiac is kind of a lame villain. I know Bobbi is Peter's girl friend , but tired of her tagging along all the time. It looks like Norman Osborn is going to become Carnage, well they have had worse ideas and he has already worn an Iron-man suit so we know he likes to play dress up.
the Incredible Hulk 712
The worst Thor vs Hulk ever. The way it was drawn sucked. They were throwing punches behind one another, it was framed in a way that did not make sense. Who ever drew this had never seen a fight before in real life. Story wise well Cho proves he is a pussy by not letting go and letting a Hulk be a Hulk.
This whole No Surrender story seems like a variation of the original Secret Wars, but on Earth with the Grandmaster taking the Beyonder's role. This issue mainly focuses on Quick Sliver with, Living Lighting, Scarlet Witch and Human Torch as support though the others are in the mix. They throw down with the Black Order which is clearly getting you more familiar with them for the movies to come.
Marvel Two In One 2
I like the fact this book is continuing the story of the Fantastic Four who despite the terrible movies that have been made you feel like you don't realize how much you will miss them til they are gone. With Mole Man and Doom in tow all that is missing is Reed and Sue.
The Falcon 4
The 4th issue of Falcon was better than expected, but he is another hero about to be crowded out by his supporting cast, I love Son of Satan, but if you already had Brother Voodoo then it's getting crowded, Marvel in trying to be PC, inadvertently is racist by assuming if a character is black he knows all other black people and has them on speed dial, just because Brother Voodoo works with one sect of Avengers doesn't mean he is tight with Sam. In fact this was more up Hellstorm's alley so why is Jericho in it at all?
Was not as bad as Black Panther, but wasn't good. The art was better than Black Panther's though. It is basically Marvel trying to undo messes they have made.
Captain America 697
I didn't care for the art , but damn it was well written. Throws in Kraven a the Spider-man villain, which is always a nice touch to see one hero fight another hero's villain. It was done in a way that makes sense in the context of the larger story they are trying to tell here and puts Captain America back where he needs to be.
X-men Blue 20 / X-men Blue Annual 1
Issue 20 finds the stuck in the mess that is time colliding with different dimensions and is a mess. The annual find them trying to rescue the Starjammers from a symbiotic planet but first they fight Venom, Jean takes care of him, though Angel, Ice-man and Beast don't do as well.
Guardians of the Galaxy 150
Adam Warlock is back, the way he is handled makes me think the writer read to much Sand-man , but we shall see, otherwise it's a pretty decent lead in to the next Infinity Event, I am still not totally sold on Ant-man being on board, but this is better than most of I have read from this book recently so I called call it an improvement.
I don't hate Miles. This was not one of his best stories he is in the 616 universe and trying to bolster him by giving him variations of Spider-Man villains with a few real ones thrown in is not doing him any favors. Why can't he have his own bad guys? The whole dad thing, seems a little tired and super -retconned.
Sunday, February 18, 2018
When Marvel started making movies we were just glad to see these characters on the screen. Now it's a billion dollar hype machine. People need to attach things to these character that just isn't there. Fuck the politics of what Hollywood wants them to promote on any given day and lets look at how these movies stack up against one another. Ranked on a scale of 1 to 10 in terms of faithfulness to the comics , acting , cinematography these qualities put them where they sit on this list. Since after all those are the most important elements of a movie about super-heroes, story wise they already have it laid out for them.
Act-10- The best cast yet
29...the best of the bunch.
2-Captain America Winter Solider
This movie had the most heart Marvel has committed to film so far
Kicked off the concept of a shared universe. Rober Downey jr, became Stark.
5- Captain America Civil War
Faith - 7
The most heroes they have had on screen up until this point, Spider-man and Ant-man stole the show.
25...Black Panther might have been created by some white men in 62 making him the first black Marvel hero, but Blade was the first black hero to hit the big screen. If he is not a hero then neither is Bat-man. Some classic scenes in the movie that was really well done considering when it came out.
Faith - 8
Act- 9... thanks to Ed Norton
Norton is probably the best Banner yet.
8-Guardians of the Galaxy
25... Groot and Rocket stole the show.
24...Rated r super hero movies became a thing, tone was better than their faithfulness or lack of to the books
Act - 8
24...Gritty in all the right ways even though it never touches the Old Man Logan Story.
11-Punisher War Zone
Faith - 9
24...as violent as it should be.
10- Spider-Man 2
Faith - 8
24- Molina's Dr. Octopus was great and Mcguire got comfortable with the role.
11- the Avengers
Faith - 6
23- Their chemistry worked despite the cgi vomited ending that became an unfortunate super-hero staple.
Thankfully spared another origin story, Holland is the best of the three Spider-men
13- X-men First Class
22...guess they didn't know who was actually in the first class, it was the most fun I had in an X-men movie up to this point.
Faith - 5
Act-9...thanks to Robert Downey jr
22...the movies villains were a little weak, but Downey pulled it together.
15-Amazing Spider Man
Faith - 8
22...too soon for a reboot, the mask came off way too much.
Faith - 8
Cine - 7
22...still fun, they should have ended it here and not made the third movie
17-Guardians of the Galaxy 2
Faith - 5
21...Mantis was a Pokemon and it was way too goofy.
17- Avengers Age of Ultron
Faith - 4
20...at least we got Vision and Scarlet Witch though way too far from the source material.
20...This should have been Pym,
19-Iron - Man 2
Faith - 4
20...not sure what didn't work about this movie, maybe it way when Whip Lash got armor.
20...why was the Green Goblin a Power Ranger?
21-Thor the Dark World
Faith - 3
Cine - 8
19...why were elves in space ships?
Faith - 4
18...He didn't have his powers half the movie and they were too apologetic about him being a god not an alien.
24- Amazing Spider man 2
18...Electro was terrible
Cine - 6
17...the acting was terrible with accents that came and went scene to scene, supporting cast was either wooden or acted like teenagers, we are too far into this to have cgi of this low quality.
26- Fantastic four 2 rise of Sliver Surfer
Faith - 4
16...might have been better if Galactus was not a purple cloud.
16-acting was as stiff as Affleck looked in that suit.
Cine - 4
15...I tried really hard to like it when it came out.
14...Venom was horrible
Worse than the second Swamp Thing , but we did get titties for this b-horror movies right from the jump.
Saturday, February 17, 2018
This movie has a lot of hype around it. Marvel wants to break into a demographic with what you would be led to believe is their first black led film...if you have forgotten about Blade. They want you to this is as important as "Roots" and "Chaka Zulu" combined but it is more like "the Lion King" meets "James Bond". It is not as terrible as I feared, but it's not great either. Social media might even try to tell you it's racist to not kiss this movie's ass, so if you are into below average cgi, accents that come and go at random and every action movie plot cliche then believe the reviews the studios have paid for.Before you shout conspiracy, I personally been paid to write positive reviews for albums by record labels, and movie studios have much more money than record labels.
Black Panther got his start as part of the supporting cast of the Fantastic Four. He was a Bat-man of the jungle. His book has been cancelled more often than not due to the fact he works better as part of a team than on his own, and even this movie conveys that. When he appeared in Civil War, I thought Boseman was a little small to be Black Panther and when he appears shirtless on screen this fact is further hammered home. Boseman looks like he did yoga to prepare for the role rather than hit the gym. He seems unsure of himself as king, and the biggest disservice it does to the character is having him rely on his supporting cast for his tech rather than have him at the level of intelligence he possesses in the comics. Seems racist to me, but this is just one of the movies many flaws.
Klaw is well acted by Serkis, but nothing like the character in the comics, who most importantly doesn't die. He is not a pink energy monster, which might have been more interesting. I think he is also a better bad guy than Jordan who appears to be just another black guy with a chip on his shoulder a stereotype Hollywood has already gotten enough mileage out of. They are trying to tell you that he has a slant other Marvel villains have not had. A bastard who is shut out from his birth right and wants to claim the throne? Loki did that better. Man-Ape is also a villain who is wishy washy in his motives and I can't see giving in to help Wakanda.
The strong females are just as two dimensional as the Amazons in Wonder Woman. Most get confusing because it becomes hard to tell who is who if not for their hairdos, most act like teenagers and it seemed like T'Challa was kissing his sister at the end , until she pops back up when they go to California. Also the end scene with Bucky was meh and overall the movie did not feel connected to the larger Marvel universe. Why didn't it come up in Killmonger's big plant to take over the world with black power that he would have to get through the Avengers to do so and judging by the fire power in the big fight at the end of the movie Wakanda would't stand a chance against them. The Hulk vs Man-ape and the kissing rhinos...no contest. Iron-man vs Wakanda tech...no contest. Thor could have put an end to all that real quick.
They pretty much blew their wad with this one unless Nekra is the bad guy for the next film or they bring in the Fantastic Four and Dr.Doom, because Black Panther's rouges gallery is pretty limited. Just like the character himself. The depth of the rogues gallery should bring out different sides of the character... Spider-man is a good example here. Black Panther was more fleshed out in the comics than here. The last 30 minute began to put me to sleep which was the supposed climax, the fight vs Killmonger in the mine seemed like it was retread from any sci-fi action movie you might name and the space ships were pitiful. The big sweeping shots and afro-heritage scenes came across the most Lion King, I am glad I did not pay to see this and while it was not as bad as I feared, it feel short of Ant-man by a few degrees. It was better than Cat-woman or Steel, so there is that. Sure more racial issues are touched on than other Marvel films, unless you count the Hulk being discriminated against for being angry while green, I looked at it in terms of here does it stack against the comics and here does it stack against other Marvel films.
Thursday, December 28, 2017
This has been floating around for a while so forcing myself to finish it. The comics have been so uninspiring it is hard to get inspired enough to write about them. So Kevin Feige announced that the Marvel movies are done at 22. So Dr. Strange will get a sequel , but not a 3rd movie? Or the tie-ins will stop and everyone has to stand on their own two feet. If the Spider-man sequel does well I have a hard time imagining that they wont make a third. In cases it would be clearly going to the well too many times. Is the focus going to shift on tv? With In-humans proved to be a bust. This is too becomes a gamble. The actors are dropping from the contracts so re-booting is imminent. Though they have learned their lesson from the comics and Legacy finds them returning to the status quo. Jane Foster will die. Iron-heart could never get off the ground. I was going to write separate reviews for The Punisher and Runaways shows , but I can sum them up in a few sentences. The Punisher, had it's moments and ended strong. Too many extra story lines, and Jigsaw should have been a thing and not just an old Army buddy. More ties into organized crime would have been nice. My major complaint is no costume, having a costume is an establishing an identity which is like the crest of his shield that symbolizes what he is fighting for. Without this he is not a super-hero or anything but another character in a crime drama. The Runaways gets a good feel of the characters. It wastes too much time with origins and gets mired down into a soap opera with their parents that eclipses the kids. I keep telling myself if this doesn't change I am giving up on the show.
The bottom line is numbers talk and bull-shit walks so the cancellations this year now include The Un-believable Gwen-pool gets cancelled, Luke Cage ( a good character not meant to support a book of his own), Hawkeye, Gen X, and America Chavez. Can Squirrel-girl be far behind one wonders. Amazing Spider-Man, Avengers and X-men Blue are said to be Marvel's biggest selling books. As of Amazing Spider-Man 793, it's been reduced to haphazard mess, this time is one with Venom symbiotes taking over people and the new Flash Thompson Anti-Venom is the only hope, as Spider-Man himself is possessed by a symbiote. Black Cat who is taking a much larger role as a villain seems to be stepping up to orchestrate this. X-men has some focus and now they have become a cluster fuck of mindless stories that feel like the kind of plot chaos that goes on in your average issue of Justice League. Avengers is not much better they are going into "No Surrender" so far it seems murky something with Kang, or High Evolutionary and building into another Infinity War in time for Infinity War to go to the big screen.
Planet Hulk is Greg Pak trying to recreate what they had with Banner using Cho-Hulk and it falls flat, though the last page of issue 711 shows Cho and Thor about to go at it. This trend continues as the go into a "World War Hulk" coming out of Planet Hulk, as this point Banner Hulk will be back so Cho-Hulk will be a mute point. Maybe he will get killed off, we can only hope, but not likely since Pak is writing it. The comics trying to cash in one the movies. Speaking of movies cashing in Black Panther continues to prove that Black Panther is a great supporting character who works in the context of the Avengers or Fantastic Four, but can't support his own book. They throw in other black characters from the Marvel Universe to try to offer support in the comic and it seems forced. The movie looks like a video and while it will be rallied behind since it is the politically correct thing to do, the story will suck, because there are no memorable Black Panther solo adventures to pull from, unless you are talking about his feud with Dr. Doom, which isn't happening in this movie. Iron Man is taking to long to bring Tony back and in the process things could not be more convoluted than they already are.
The best news of the year is Dr. Strange bringing back THE SENTRY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!. Loki is stealing Strange's thunder and we know Sentry has ripped one god in half, and Are's is tougher than Loki. When he actually gets into action by making a triumphant return to Asgard. Moon Knight is showing some promise. The art looks like it is drawn by the same due who does Crossed, which is a good thing.
Tuesday, December 26, 2017
Watched this a week ago , but hadn't felt inspired to write about it. Most of the die-hards have seen it by now. What's left are the people with a passing interest who might see it over the course of their vacation as it winds down around new years, god knows kids don't go back until the 5th. I am not a Star Wars fanatic. I respect the first three films , enjoy the mythology they created, and I like Rogue One for re-capturing that. So I am not clouded by that and can watch these movies with a neutral view.You have probably read a bunch of fan-boy gushing over it and might be a little confused. It really depends on if you are old enough to have see any of the first three in theaters when they came out. If you are then you are clearly not the audience they have in mind, It is written for Millennials and stick a lot of the issues they Tweet about in your face. Their is even a politically correct character, who almost gets killed, not a spoiler since every one almost gets killed. It's the tone of the movie that is the main problem. This is not a get off my lawn moment. I won't hold it up against the first three movies. I'll just hold it up against "Rogue One".
Rogue One took itself seriously. This movie did not. You will then bring up the first three movies when you rush to defend this one by saying"There was humor in the first three movies". True, but it was delivered by Harrison Ford in such a dead pan straight faced manner than it did not take away from the dynamic dramatic gravitas of those movies.Those movies were in many ways a homage to the classic sci-fi serials, so they had class to them. Rogue One followed this blueprint. The problem could be Disney as it felt like I could have been watching Mulan the way they used the force to force the humor in. It was entertaining until these cringe worthy moments pulled me out of the movie.
There is no menace. With Darth Vader dead there has been a void left in these films. Kylo Ren doesn't fill that void and still is in league with Anakin from the Jar Jar era. He still throws temper tantrums. He can still be rather tedious. I still seem him as a petulant child and lets face it Darth Vader did more bad ass shit in the few minutes he was in "Rogue One' than Kylo Ren has done in two fucking movies, so there is no defense for that. You want a villain to be bad ass you write him that way, Hollywood as more than enough examples of this happening in one movie so don't say shit about character development that is bullshit weak writing end of story. While we are on bad writing , how did we get get to Hoth? Granted by that point in the movie is was getting harder for it to keep my attention, but I should have picked up on that. Another is issue is unless it was Luke and Chewie interacting or Leia and C3p0 then the chemistry between characters was just not there. Is it a terrible movie because of these things, no it's more watchable than the Jar Jar era films, I do think without Lucas having a hand in these films they are off the beam. Glad I saw it on-line and did not pay 15 dollars to see it as it worth watching just not worth Mega-plex pricing.