The second season of Daredevil dropped today. I’m not one for binge watching, personally, so I have no idea how long it will take me to watch the show, but as of this typing I’ve watched the first episode and liked what I saw.
But the promised appearance of the Punisher had me reflecting that, no matter how popular a character he is, he is a weird anomaly in the Marvel pantheon of a character with little discernible personality and few memorable appearances.
There once was a time when various comics companies would just toss random characters out there and see what stuck. While the Silver Age version of characters like the Flash and Green Lantern first appeared in DC Comics’ Showcase, that particular comic was initially intended as an anthology to introduce new characters. In point of fact, the first character to be featured in Showcase was a firefighter named Fireman Farrell. He got three short stories in that issue and as near as I can make out was never seen again.
As a digression, Farrell’s last story featured a national news TV crew following Farrell and his company around as they fought a fire, but that was to cover a story about a local (and apparently unpopular) ballot initiative to give the firemen a raise so they could do stuff like send their kids to camp (that was treated as a tragedy). One woman interviewed said the teachers deserved a raise first, and a home viewer decried that woman as “stupid”. I sure would like to know why wanting a raise for a nation’s educators is stupid. Or why a local ballot initiative was national news. I guess the point is I don’t miss Fireman Farrell.
But that “let’s see what works” approach is my best explanation for the Sea Devils.
Yes, we’re already three weeks into 2016 but I finally managed to put together my movie rankings for 2015. Because life. I only managed to see 51 films this year, a paltry sum compared to Watson when he isn’t even trying. And eight of those were on a plane to or from China, making the theater total even lower. Definitely a busy year, but overall a great one for movies. Head after the jump to see how I ranked all 51!
Everything was going along just fine until disco came along. I’m probably not the first person to write that sentence. For our purposes I refer to the fact that even with 3 monthly books and various guest appearances, the wall-crawlers adventures had been pretty straight forward to put in order. But then came a couple of issues where Peter went to the disco (and then teamed up with the cast of Saturday Night Live) where everything just went all to hell.
Much, much more on this after the break as I try to put this update to rest, not because I’m happy with it…but to save my sanity. I can’t imagine what this is going to be like when I get to the 90’s…
As usual, spoilers follow from here on out if you’ve missed out on the last 50 years of Spider-Man and are just getting started.
Look, no one logging in here today is looking for a Fantastic Four movie review. You want Star Wars. But I’m prepping for an unexpected but totally expected journey. I couldn’t go today. Instead, I went for this…whatever it was…on pay per view.
Fantastic Four is currently at 10% fresh on Rotten Tomatoes. Which is not good, but actually up a little I think. This movie has had disaster written all over it for a long time. So it was surprising when both Jenny and Watson give it halfway decent reviews.
I never caught it in theatres but watched it recently and surprisingly it wasn’t half bad. Only one-third bad. I thought it had a great sci-fi/horror vibe going for it and was ruined when it, ironically, turned into a super hero movie. I’d be curious to see Trank’s original vision for the film as the last third of the movie felt like the studio got cold feet and stepped in to “fix” it and only made things worse.
Thanksgiving is the official start of the holiday season for you folks in the US isn’t it? So it’s only fitting that we start this collection of Spider-Man cameos with a Marvel holiday special. After the break, more from this issue and other cameos that don’t quite make the cut to be included in the Spider-Man Complete Chronology.
The deconstruction of the superhero genre is something that has been going on for a few decades now, and is often rather repetitive. Generally, it is an excuse to show classic or recognizable characters doing things that normally they wouldn’t, often of a more R-rated variety.
That said, when the deconstruction is done right, such as in Watchmen, the work says something about the genre’s conventions and tropes in a way that can be highly entertaining for the reader, while also giving the reader a chance to think over the sorts of things that are taken for granted.
But one of the best deconstructions out there doesn’t just cover superheroes, but pulp literature and genre storytelling in general. That would be the comics series Planetary, written by Warren Ellis and illustrated by John Cassaday.