Unlike Uatu, I have vowed to interfere with your viewing enjoyment of assorted Marvel adaptations! Disney’s first official MCU cartoon, “What If…?”, is simultaneously canon & irrelevant to the MCU because of they’ve officially admitted there’s a multiverse. Every Marvel adaptation is now retroactively part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, completionists!
The series premiere is the most boring, yet I spent the most words discussing it. It acclimates viewers to the concept as subsequent episodes become more experimental. It doesn’t do anything as provocative as Steve Rogers professing blind patriotism is bad. These brisk episodes expect you to conversant with the MCU, which shouldn’t be an issue if you’re streaming on Disney+. “What if … Phil Coulson lived?” is available to stream now too. Some of the minute has been fudged in these altverses, but it’s not like the movieverse continuity is airtight. At times like those it makes me wish the series wasn’t beholden to the MCU at all. What if … you read below for SPOLIERS for the speculative fiction that Uatu & I watched? What if … this phrase wasn’t at all overused in this post?
Disney caught up to comics in killing death. Here be SPOILERS for Disney+’s Loki series, the direct sequel to this Hydundai commercial. (I thought Marvel Studios shilled for Audi?) This is not a trick. Oddly I don’t have too much to say about it? (Don’t get your hopes up about it being short though.) So stay for the mini-rants about alternate timelines vs. alternate realities & identity changes in adaptations!
After last week’s commissioned deep dive into Stormfront the proverbial milkshake duck, I figured it’s time to clear out some of the Marvel content cluttering my drafts. I won’t be finished editing my X Of Swords review until nobody cares, so this is light on X-Men content. It does have a surfeit of pre-Christmas action figure photos if that’s your bag. (I will regret this if Santa only delivers coal this year.) After the MCU news musings not involving She-Hulk, my comic book thoughts are separated by superfluous tildes!
“Now I have The Phoenix Force! Ho ho ho!”
It took me four Marvel toys to make one DC! Can you identify them? This project was a big May Kennedy mood. This blog says Firefly frequently, so hopefully it’ll pick up some bonus traffic from diehard Browncoats.
“Your future’s so bright, I have to wear shades. Because you’ll be aflame.”
I was kind of looking forward to finally seeing The New Mutants this weekend…. Now would be an opportunity to get back to writing my second novel, but the crisis has put a damper on my enthusiasm that. So I continue to squander my time. “FAILED NOVELIST” should be inscribed on my tombstone. I have a newfound respect for sequels now that I realized I otherwise have to do characterization & worldbuilding from scratch. After a really crummy run of things, however, my ex-Booktrope buddy Cain S. Latrani has a new novel published, Wonder Land: Black Ice. It even has a t-shirt!
I already freelance from home, so weirdly self-quarantine doesn’t feel much different to me than most people. This is probably to my benefit, but I still have great existential dread about the pestilence & a new fear of going to the grocery store. (Delivery is booked solid where I live.) Like many self-isolating, I’ve been watching copious amounts of television at home. I was already doing that, so it doesn’t feel like a treat or respite. Now they’re saying this behavior is “heroic,” but where was this encouragement before the pandemic? We may be cursed to live in interesting times, yet my life continues to be uninteresting to describe. I blog, therefore I am not.
So here’s a random smattering of television I’ve been watching. Get your cold takes! Maybe I ought to have saved some of these short reviews for later?
Marvel prominently celebrated it eightieth anniversary last year. I recall when Marvel only marked milestones counting back to 1961’s Fantastic Four #1 (with the pre-Marvel debut of Captain America being an asterisk). It seems when DC Comics was celebrating its eightieth anniversary of Batman, Marvel suddenly decided to start counting birthdays back to its Golden Age progenitors, Timely Publications & Atlas Comics. Is this revisionist history correcting an oversight or just a company refusing to let its top competitor have any promotional advantage? You decide, True Believers!
So what does this have to do with this week’s article meat? I just wanted a tangential segue to show off my Jubilee action figure. There’s also a new miscellany of unrelated Marvel musings. Let’s begin with the mootest points. Excelsior!
Once I start writing X-Men, Jubes is officially stealing this catchphrase.
HUZAH! It’s the fiftieth anniversary of San Diego Comic Convention! I didn’t attend, thanks for asking. (I took last week off anyway after reviewing Stranger Things 3.) Did you? Here is my armchair event coverage (loosely arranged by DC, Marvel, & miscellaneous mess) that’s rapidly losing topicality! Wait, shouldn’t it be celebrating it golden anniversary next year?
Now that Gotham is gone (sniff), I guess we’re in the Avengers: Endgame now. (It’s pronounced End-gah-may much like SHAZAM! rhymes with chasm.) I was not impressed by Avengers: Infinity War, so I went into its continuation with disgruntled resignation. Even though I wasn’t excited for the movie, I didn’t want want little enjoyment I might have sapped by spoilers.
This is like a Dagwood sandwich of Marvel Studios movies. Having five mini-films compressed together justifies its three hour length. (Despite the mass hysteria, my bladder made it all way through even as I ate an Alamo Drafthouse dinner.) The pacing glides by. The Russo brothers hold everything together despite ever-shifting tones. Their ability to juggle dozens of characters remains impeccable.
Here comes another SPOILERY collaboreview with The Wages of Cinema! The marketing for this movie shrewd enough to reveal so little that talking about practically anything is a spoiler. So you have nobody to blame but yourself if you keep reading/listening without having seen it. (There’s plenty to critique, so who knows whether anything is presented in coherent order.) Since it made $1.2 billion worldwide in its opening weekend, however, I wager you’ve already been inoculated.
Last time I did a collaboreview with The Wages of Cinema, it was just Jack & I on Pacific Rim: Uprising. This time we’ve got the whole kooky quartet back together! Forsooth this is the most ambitious crossover event in history! Alas, they can’t all be odes to dirigible crime! Infinite Spoilers for Avengers: Infinity War would be a lie because I eventually run out of them. I did throw in some for Agents of SHIELD because everything is tenuously connected.
You ever go to a barbecue joint you haven’t been to in a while & decide you might as well splurge on a full rack of baby back ribs? Then when they bring out your food, it looks like almost too much food? But then you start on the first rib & it’s even more delicious than you remembered. So you quickly strip the flesh from a second rib. Then a haze sweeps over you. Once it passes you see your glass of sangria is empty, your plate of ribs contains naught but a heap of bones, the other patrons have expired with large chunks missing, & your hands are covered in red goo of assorted viscosity. Then you declare that it was really yummy! Luckily the kitchen staff appears intact so you may return. That’s what Thor Ragnarok is like!
The Wages of Cinema invited me back to collaboreview it with them. I agreed since they had nice things to say about me in their retrospective podcast of favorite episodes. Verily doth SPOILERS roam free onward!