Who’s Ready For Spider-Man Fatigue?

The trailer for Black Panther is awesome, even if his tweaked costume still isn’t gold-accented. Contrariwise, the more buzz I hear for Spider-Man: Homecoming, the less I’m excited for it.  The final poster is not good. The Vulture’s personality & gear seems more suited to Beetle. (It seems likely Hannah John-Kamen will be the Janice Lincoln version in Ant-Man & the Wasp. Does that mean Tombstone will appear too?) Zendaya is playing an existing character under an alias as if the reveal of her true identity is supposed to be some dramatic surprise? There’s already too much Iron Man in his ugly Ultimates armor. The bastards broke seven LEGO Death Stars just for one gag.

Now Spider-Man’s suit greets him by announcing his secret identity. This is a huge design flaw that could’ve been easily avoided. The new moral is that Spidey must show great responsibility to prove himself worthy of the Stark’s high-tech clothing? (If Sony & Marvel could’ve shared Venom too, this would be a better opportunity to set up that spinoff movie. Tom “No one cared who I was until I put on the symbiote.” Hardy starring as Venom is exciting casting that would’ve been even better if TDKR’s Bane was on Venom, but apparently his solo movie won’t tie-in with the MCU Spidey’s adventures to the detriment of both studios.) I still don’t like either of his costumes that carried over from IMvCA: DoV. The one in the upcoming Playstation video game is more appealing for trying something new instead of being an inferior copy of the classic suit compared to Raimi’s trilogy & Amazing Spider-Man 2.

I have such Spidey fatigue that I don’t know if I even want to see it in cinema. I didn’t even watch the last two in theatres because they lacked J. Jonah Jameson, & this cashgrab is making the same mistake (unless that’s who Zendaya’s secret identity is). On the other paw, I’m sure a review will appeal to more readers than a Sisyphean blog trying to make my toils at writing a difficult second novel sound fascinating. (I just typed up the chapter where a vintage MechaGodzilla model is built! I kinda feel like I should quit while I’m ahead.) Can I run a very timely review of Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark instead? Maybe I’ll watch it but buy another ticket to GOTG 2 or Wonder Woman at the box office. What say you?

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How Wondrous Was Wonder Woman?

It used to be a recurring joke that any comic book character would get a movie before Wonder Woman. At a 2013 NYCC afterparty hosted by The Mary Sue, one of the cocktail specials was called Wonder Woman Movie so guests could demand “Give me a Wonder Woman Movie!” This would’ve been effective more promptly if the bartenders were WB executives. (I slightly preferred the Strong Female Protagonist cocktail because it was green like She-Hulk.) A Wonder Woman movie has even been a recurring part of her comics mythos since the 1940’s, so it’s about time Hollywood caught up. Now it’s finally her turn!  I was concerned by all the positive press the movie was receiving because I feared I’d be the lone weirdo that didn’t love it. Fortunately it lived up to the hype, even incorporating some of my ranty demands!  That’ll teach Marvel Studios to cheap out on bribing me! I’m collaboreviewing Wonder Woman with The Wages of Cinema! (They’ve just done a podcast where they responded to my comments!) It’s a wonderful film!

Although she was still as wooden as the surrounding film, Gal Gadot was the best part of Batman v. Superman: Yawn Dawn of Justice because she was a cedar in a forest of larches. Here Ms. Gadot shows she can actually act! Her expressive face conveys childlike wonder at the world outside of Themyscira. She’s a DC protagonist allowed to smile without being a baddie! She’s violent without being dour! They convey her strength through compassion perfectly!

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Americans offended by the lack of white stars on her skirt should take solace in WB nixing the red star on her tiara to alienate her Communist fans too.

Hereafter come the SPOILERS. If you’ve yet to purchase a ticket to see this film, please stop reading here & watch this Nerdist medley featuring Ciara “Hawkgirl” Renee!

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When All Else Fails, Visit Riverdale

If you’re like me & too poor to afford to watch Twin Peaks’ revival on Showtime, Riverdale may tide you over. At first I scoffed at this show because it’s six years too late for a gritty melodramatic adaptation of Archie Comics, the wholesome teenage love triangle sitcom that has inexplicably been in print for seventy-six years. To my surprise, the show that aired after Powerless is actually good! It should not work nearly as well as it does. Curse you for making so much quality television, CW! (If comic book adaptations aren’t your cup of tea, I suggest The 100 & Crazy Ex-Girlfriend.)

It’s probably a lot easier to enjoy  this if you’re not a die-hard Archie fan (I’ve never met one in person, but I’m sure they exist) since it takes giant liberties with such characters as Chuck Clayton, Dilton Doiley, & Ethel Muggs. Jughead isn’t asexual, although the series was well into development when the latest comics reboot made that canon. It would’ve been easy to write Veronica Lodge in her Middle Earth cape as the rich bitch, but they’ve subverted that so well by making her repentantly compassionate. (The ensemble is so wonderful it’s hard to believe this is Camila Mendes’s first TV role.) Instead of fighting with Betty Cooper for Archie’s affections, they’re an awesome friend duo. Prototypical all-American girl next door (which could mean something very different depending on where you go in the US) Betty Cooper gets layers & family drama from having a mom named Alice Cooper who’s not the shock rocker. It’s spider brooch wearing Cheryl Blossom that gets to be the over the top mean girl, but it’s surprising she turned out as well-adjusted given her Gothic upbringing in Thornhill. Josie & the Pussycats give ridiculously awesome concerts, although they can’t top the superlative Josie & the Pussycats movie.  Archie Andrews is ostensibly the star yet he remains its least interesting character. He’s also gauche enough to wear a varsity jacket to a wake.

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Another rejected pitch was Roverdale starring Arfie Andrews, Sheltie Cooper, Furronica Lodge, Pughead Jones, Chien Keller, Dilton Doggy, Reggie Mastiff, & Feral Blossom.

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Guardians Of The Galaxy 2: Cosmic Boogaloo!

After my off-brand (?) foray into limited edition food, & Zack Snyder’s reclusive axes, I’m back with a much more mainstream collaboreview of Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 2! The Wages of Cinema had me back to remember names & tell me I’ve been pronouncing esoteric wrong my whole life!

The first Guardians of the Galaxy may be my favorite MCU movie. This may be because it felt like a Farscape relaunch, the clearest parallel being Star-Lord retooled to be more like John Crichton. (Ben Browder has a cameo in this one!) It’s one of the rare adaptations that change almost everything from the source material while managing to be wonderful. (Meanwhile the 2017 Free Comic Book Day issue of GOTG has Marvel rejigger the team to be even closer to the movie.) It even works as a stand alone space opera without needing to worry about the other Marvel movies. Fortunately this sequel maintains the magic of the first installment without falling into the trap of just rehashing it. Even the credits are fun! The trailers did a great job not spoiling the movie so I would have something to do here!

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Limited Edition Food v. Zack’s Axes

What  I am about to tell you may shock delicate sensibilities: I find pizza to be overrated. What’s wore is that both vegetarians & omnivores have found common ground in not shutting up about how great pizza is. As someone that generally avoids the stuff, I found myself improbably intrigued by the commercials for Little Caesar’s smokehouse pizza. It reminded me of the barbacoa pizza I had at Telepizza. The problem was the nearest Little Caesar’s is over an owl hour away.

Eventually, I did find an excuse to be in the neighborhood. Do all Little Caesar’s resemble fortified bank lobbies without tables on the inside? Due to the lack of seating & scenery, I had to drive to the nearest comic book shop & eat it in my car like some kind of criminal! (Do criminals often eat pizza in cars? I only ask because what I don’t know about crime could fit in a phone book. Meanwhile what I don’t know about cars could fit in two.) It was delicious! The three barbecued meats (brisket, bacon, & pulled pork) were savory & high quality for the price. I was forced to eat the entire thing by myself! I didn’t know Big Moe Cason was a person before, but now I have reason to implicitly trust him.

A few weeks later, I had another opportunity  to pass by a Little Caesar’s. They told me they don’t make the smokehouse pizza anymore. WHAT? Not only did the commercial fail to mention this concoction was a limited time offer, it wasn’t even available for a full two months? This comes on the heels of Blimpie’s & Wendy’s not reviving their explicitly limited offer BBQ pork items. Why is it so difficult for fast food restaurants to keep pulled pork on the menu? There aren’t any chains that specialize in it, so you’d think one of these trial runs would be a grand slam.

Of course the most agonizing of limited edition edibles remains the McDonald’s shamrock shake. This year was even worse because they added an array of mint-chocolate drinks with it & didn’t haven enough STRAWs to go around. (Will they have enough Frorks for Cinco de Mayo?) McDonald’s knows there’s an insane demand for these, so why only make them available around St. Patrick’s Day? They’ve got over forty years worth of market research to show it’s popular enough to keep around. Why does McDonald’s only want my patronage in the spring? I WANT TO DRINK MINTY THINGS ALL YEAR!

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Step one: Create demand for your exclusive product. Step two: Abruptly cut off this popular product’s supply. Step three: Profit?

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Triple Toy Threat!

This week, I was invited to two advance movie screenings. One starred Scarlet Witch, Shadow King, & Mantis. The other starred Scarlet Witch, Hawkeye, & Punisher. So I went to the first. Not only did I enjoy it very much, it’s tangentially in the nerdy wheelhouse. Unfortunately I’m not supposed to tell you about it because of a stupid NDA which prevents me from building advance buzz for the movie without being subject to legal action.  Unless the point of that clause is reverse psychology. Even with the astronomical odds of the studio reading my blog, I’ll err on the side of paranoia & talk toys today.

The Bradford Exchange of Canada is producing a talking 12″ Justin Trudeau doll! Several articles are reporting that this is a bizarre product, seemingly oblivious to the fact that replicas of prominent political leaders are quite common in the high end 1/6 scale doll world. What’s actually bizarre is that the Bradford Exchange & its international affiliate websites refuse to sell this Prime Minister effigy outside of Canada!

Speaking of dreamy world leaders, here’s T’Challa!

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Includes authentic Wakandan jungle diorama!

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Sara Lance & The Raiders Of The Legendary Spear!

Legends of Tomorrow is the most improved DC TV show, but I don’t know if I’d go so far as to say it’s the best. It’s still too inconsistent. But when it’s fun, like the last few season two episodes I’m about to SPOIL, it’s very fun!

After being naively sporting with the fate of reality at stake, I really appreciated the Legends taking the initiative to steal the rest of the Holy Lance Spear of Destiny from the misnomered Legion of Doom’s lair. Firestorm transmuting its obelisk safe into jellybeans was keen! Too bad Reverse-Flash didn’t do a full table flip!

When it was revealed that Christ’s blood could nullify its powers, the show got very close to breaking the fourth wall. Sara Lance: “So we can just go back to the Crucifixion to end this threat to all reality with some fresh Jesus blood?” Rip Hunter: “Wow, the writers didn’t think this Biblical plot device through. We absolutely cannot go back to an established historical event to depower this touched relic lickety-split! Can you imagine how many angry letters we’d get? We’re already borderline sacrilegious enough as it is!”

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“My new codename will take you to the bank , Mr. Thawne. To THE BLOOD BANK!”

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