Unsurprisingly, Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice was not very good. (It also wasn’t that awful.) To compensate, I’ll talk about plenty of geeky adaptations that are more worth your time. That could be a really expansive list, so I’ll narrow it down to what I’ve recently seen.
The “Worlds Finest” crossover episode of Supergirl really should have an apostrophe after the first ‘s.’ F-Lash getting everyone ice cream cones is the best use of superspeed since Zoom handing out posters of Harrison Wells in Earth-2. Winn absorbed Barry’s affability just by being near him. Barry also somehow managed offscreen to make it so metahumans no longer need to be imprisoned in military black sites. Extraterrestrials still aren’t entitled to due process in the Lucy-ocracy though.
It was great how they matter-of-factly established Silver Banshee was a kind of magic. (See, it’s that simple, Marvel Studios!) I loved how Siobahn just did her face up like comic Silver Banshee without needing an over-explained justification. She just decided to become full Goth (unlike that poseur, Pixie). All that facepaint shows commitment & showmanship. Too bad Livewire didn’t get a costume upgrade to match. Why couldn’t she have received an offscreen makeover too? She looked especially bad next to her new bestie. You can’t dress in ratty civvies like a radio face anymore if you want to be respected as a supervillainess, Leslie!
This episode was the anti-BVSDOJ. The set-up, tone, colors, & characterization were wonderful whereas the climax was lacking. I really don’t like it when regular people save superheroes, especially when it makes F-Lash superfluous. After all her build-up, Silver Banshee is accidentally defeated when Livewire is once again vanquished by municipal water. Rushing through the finale to get to Non’s Myriad cliffhanger was not cool.
The F-Lash’s solo show last week, which seems to be set before the crossover, was also great & confirmed its time travel rules are as random as Doctor Who’s. The STAR Labs crew really need “Pied Piper was right” shirts. Meanwhile BVSDOJ F-Lash’s armor is so ugly even Google’s too ashamed to link it.
Bee-con Beacon of Hope” was everything I wanted from (Green) Arrow in a post The F-Lash world. It’s much easier to give it a pass on its typical plot holes when the show is having goofy fun. They remembered trick arrows were an important part of Green Arrow’s shtick & Black Canary saved his life by screaming at him!
I wonder why Bug-Eyed Bandit hasn’t upgraded herself to Queen Bee since nobody else is using that moniker on TV & her gender-swapped inspiration rarely used bees. She doesn’t even wear multi-faceted goggles, so her current codename just seems like a diss on Emily Kinney. I love that not only was Iron Heights dumb enough to grant her Internet access, they also released her as soon as she changed a date in her file. Then she made evolving cyber-bees & neural implants to control them in a day. Her bees even coalesced into budget Yellowjacket. Give Brie Larvan all the Nobel Prizes!
“Trans-Dimensional Turtles” was a remake of Turtles Forever with the current animated turtles filling in for their 2003 counterparts. Since I liked the original & didn’t have to buy a ticket to see it, I didn’t mind. This one is more respectful to 1987 turtles & even got all their voice actors back unlike Forever. Thanks to the magic of time travel, they even linked its conclusion to that of “Wormquake!” So it was slightly more fun than the average shelltastic episode.
The two biggest missing pieces of the remake were Rocksteady & Bebop. They are best in life! Of course I’ll finally be able to see them on the big screen in TMNT: Out of the Shadows. I still haven’t seen the last one, but how can anyone say no to Rocksteady & Bebop? It’s pointless to put pants on the turtles, but hopefully Stephen Amell won’t fall too short of Elias Koteas’s Casey Jones. Even if this sequel manages to be less awesome than BVSDOJ, fellow R&B fans will still have the Rocksteady & Bebop Destroy Everything mini-series (featuring the IDW debuts of Savanti Romero, Wingnut, & Screwloose) to look forward to!
Game of Thrones season five was better than the last two books. (Part of me wishes the series ended with A Storm of Swords because it was almost perfect.) Main characters actually converged instead of spilling out into pointless meandering sidequests! Thanks for spoiling all the changes from the books, geek website headlines! Unfortunately they kept Daenerys being a bad mommy to her adorable dragon babies. While the content may be even grimmer than BVSDOJ, at least that’s appropriate given the source material. (Alright, enough DC characters lose hands that it’s okay for Wonder Woman to give Doomsday’s the Jaime Lannister treatment.) They don’t desaturate the colors either! It’s a shame Jon Snow won’t be staying dead in either medium. Alexander Siddig as Prince Doran Martell makes me sad that he wasn’t cast as R’as al Ghul in Batman Begins or (Green) Arrow. Hopefully Brienne really killed Stannis despite the ambiguously frustrating way they filmed that bit. I also hope we finally get Asha/Yara Greyjoy’s Queensmoot next season & plenty more Ser Pounce!
I wasn’t planning on discussing Gotham this week until I came across this GIF. It’s better than a sad trombone because it features Melinda “I was awesome in Spawn!” Clarke & a certified sane Oswald Cobblepot. Gotham City does have some wonderful headlines.
In his too brief return as Penguin’s dad, Paul Reubens proved that he hasn’t lost his knack for death scenes since Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It’s always nice to have your father be supportive of your unorthodox career.
I finally saw Jessica Jones, & it was great! Krysten Ritter was perfect as the eponymous lead. Her arc could’ve been more dynamic had she enthusiastically worn the Jewel costume before running afoul of Kilgrave. There’s an episode where Jessica is attacked by humans using her as a scapegoat & she gives them a fantastic speech that Superman should’ve given to Batman & Lex Luthor. It’s frustrating that her she’s still vulnerable to conventional attacks despite being superstrong. Why does she really awkwardly call Captain America “the flag waver” when Disney has the full media rights to him?
Equally brilliant is David Tennant as Kilgrave (with a completely different origin from the comics). He plays such an insouciant sophiopathic hedonist. It’s refreshreshing to get a supervillain with more intimate goals. The best parts are when he tries to play house with Jessica & when he’s in the bio-hazard cell. The escalation of his powers didn’t come through well because he already seems mega-powerful. It doesn’t build to the spectacular climax you’d expect either. The excuse for Jessica’s immunity to him fell flat.
The worst part was Kilgrave still wasn’t purple! This is unforgivable! He’s THE PURPLE MAN! He would’ve been an even better character with that iconic pigmentation since comic book adaptations should be as visually interesting as possible. Argyria is a real medical condition that they could’ve linked it to. I was looking forward to him telling strangers “You don’t think I’m purple” or putting on makeup like Nicholson’s Joker to go out in public. They only teased him turning purple in the finale. Violet hair dye, makeup, & contacts can’t be that expensive.
Jessica Jones debuted in Alias, which was a MAX title for mature readers so it was sexually explicit. There is plenty of sex here yet it’s still PG-13 bowdlerized so it feels artificial & tonally inconsistent. I was both pleasantly surprised there’s cunnilingus & dismayed that the woman had to be fully covered by a sheet during it for Netflix propriety. At least they handle the rape & PTSD elements very well.
They made me like Patsy “Hellcat” Walker for once. As her theme song says, I really want to be her friend. Too bad she wasn’t a real ginger because I kept getting her confused with Pam. Her ex-boyfriend turned out to be Nuke, except he was named Will Simpson instead of Frank. He didn’t have the American flag tattooed to his face either, but I suppose there’s time for that next season if they don’t chicken out on memorable visuals again. He should team up with Mad Dog & Daimon Hellstrom to form Patsy’s League of Evil Exes.
I wish there was a scene of Luke Cage hugging attack dogs. It would’ve made for less confusing comic relief than the neighbor siblings. For some reason this show convinced me Brutal Sandwiches would be a spectacular band name.
Since I skipped a prime opportunity to plug my book last post, here’s your weekly reminder to read The Dolorous Adventure of Banenose if you’ve not yet done so. It doesn’t have an adaptation yet, but I insist that it’s a better use of your funds than a BVSDOJ ticket. So now I will leave you with another quote that would look good as a bumper sticker.
I apologize for not finding a more appropriate baboon photo to desecrate.