Sunday, August 7, 2011

the golden age of sci-fi, a dimension of sight and sound.

Who's seen the Twilight zone? *raises hand*

It's one of my favorite shows, and since It's now on netflix, Ive been able to enjoy it much more easily. Something I've noticed is just how much modern science fiction owes to that show. Since I'm a geek ideas like parallel universes, time loops, and intangible 5th dimensions cross my mind fairly often. Still, I can watch an episode of that show and feel intrigued by the story being told, while the effects are dated, a lot of the concepts hold up quite well. The show ran from 1959-1963 and helped usher in a major Sci-fi boom, mainly due to it's most prominent contributors; Rod Serling, and Richard Matheson. If you poll people on the street, 90% of them well know what the twilight zone is, and most of them will be able to describe an episode of two. It's had a lasting effect on popular culture. From gremlins on the wing of a plane, to little boys who can literally DO ANYTHING with their mind, With shows like lost and fringe exploring time travel and alternate dimensions, it's clear to see the impact it's had.
Art has to get it's inspiration from something, and I'm sure all of the advancement made in the 1940's and 1950's help ignite the minds of future twilight writers. Television, nuclear energy, space travel, how can you not help but continue to think "what if" under those circumstances?

and for the record, my favorite episose is season one's long live Walter jameson!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

oh the things I apprciate in my life.

Being Thanksgiving and all, I thought I would compile a list of a few things that I have going for me.

*my job. I enjoy it a lot more then some, and in the current economy, that's a lot to ask for.

*my family, particularly my parents and siblings. I'm not always the easiest to be around, but they tolerant me.

*my friends, especially the ones I've met and re-met over the last year. I feel welcome in their presence and they are always entertaining.

*The entertainers who's books I've read, film's I've watched and games I've played. It made sound trite, but they've helped me stay sane.

*my boss. Shocker I know, but I have one of the few who offer assistance whenever i need it and positive feedback when I ask.

*Above all else, My best friend. She is a role model, a muse, and a inspiration all in one. I'm lucky to have her in my life.

Why I have hope in the Green Lantern film.

I'll freely admit i'm a fan of Ryan Reynolds. I'm not in a hissy fit over his being cast as Hal Jordon. here are a few reason why I have a positive outlook on 2011's Green Lantern film.

1. Remember this picture?

The costume from the teaser looks a little different. does the CGI look a little off? Yea, but they have six months to hammer it out. and I can think of a few films that have had less then stellar effect in the trailers.

2. Ryan Reynolds can do dramatic roles. Look at his characters in the Amityville Horror, Buried and Smoking Aces. Not a whole lot of funny in them. sure the teaser showed us the hilarious Ryan all the women love. You know why? To get those same women to go see the film. It's marketing.

3. All that has been shown is a teaser trailer which was more then likely churned out in time for the holiday season. it was released to generate buzz, not to get people in the theaters right now.

4.Martin Campbell isn't Uwe Boll. the guy makes pretty decent movies. He made a reboot of 007 fly, that's pretty good to me.

5.Marvel has been owning DC in the theaters for the last ten years. how is this a good thing? competition breeds better products. DC wants their own Iron Man and I doubt their going to put all of their egg in a basket that will turn out like Steel.....

Of course, I could be completely wrong. The movie could suck monkey balls, but I this point I'm optimistic.

Marvel's heroic age

Marvel's "Heroic age" has been going strong for a little while, and while I'm more or less digging it so far, I have to ask are they trying to go home again?
Starting with Avengers disassembled in 2004, Brian Micheal Bendis kicked off a dark, depressing ride. following with House of M, Civil War, Planet Hulk, Secret Invasion, Dark Reign and Siege the Marvel U. went from a relatively idealistic setting, to a dark and oppressive playground for the bad guys.
With the end of Norman Osborn's reign on the MU, we've been promised a return to the old status quo(more or less) and, honestly, I don't think it's possible. For starters, naming the banner above all of your books "the heroic age" is a tad pretensions. The golden age of comics wasn't a marking ploy, it was given in hindsight in reverence. Telling us we're reading the heroic age of marvel comics(all while insisting it isn't a crossover) is akin to telling us how the books should make us feel, and not letting the work speak for itself. If you want to move the line in a new direction, announce it and let the writers and artist do their thing, don't force feed us the premise and write the same despressing books you've been writing for the past six years. it shows a lack of confidence on marvel's part.

While I believe comic's should be enjoyed by all ages, I don't believe you can have supervillians eating their young and going on rape-fests all while insisted on a new, lighter, era. That's the problem I see with the heroic age. there has been too much done under the direction of a 14 year old's idea of "mature" I'm all for a book implying adult situations. but to out right show and state everything? that's bad judgment on marvel's part. it's like sex jokes being abundant in Disney movies, they fly over the heads of children, but the adults recognize them right away.
Having physical abuse of a male character by a female character being shown as comical (Amazing Spider-Man) and having a character literally being ripped in two by another(Siege) is going too far. these are not things you can just sweep under the rug and forget about, once you introduce concepts such as these, you can't go back to a more ambitious, all age appropriate type of story, the water is already tainted. the long time fans know this and new readers will either be turned off by the new ,lighter approach, or turned off by the the offensiveness of older books the first time they pick up a back issue.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

a quick recap of spider-man in the last few months.

So a lot has happened in the spider-man books since I last posted. unfortunately, not a lot of it is good.

+Michelle has shown slight improvement, that is no longer trying to kill peter.
+Kaine has returned, and has been given good development.
-Kaine also got his ass handed to him by a 12 year old.
-Charlie has gotten no character development
BIG - the lizard story sucked balls. while I commend them for trying something different(as I wanted) they had him eat his own son. and the art hurt my eyes.
probably a -, but may work out: Kraven the hunter is coming back. I've loved the arc so far, but I just hope they can follow through with it, and make his resurrection worth while. but, really, was anyone clamoring for Kraven to return? give us Ben already.....

and unless O.M.I.T. retcons the hell out of OMD it is probably going to suck also.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Character appreciation: Dr. Curt Connors, the Lizard.

Dr. Curt Connors First appeared in the Amazing Spider-Man issue #6, and has more or less been around in one form or another ever since. Connors, a gifted surgeon, was enlisted into the Army and lost his right arm during the war(Originally Korea, perhaps.) Upon returning to civilian life he began experimenting with reptile DNA in hopes to harness the ability to regrow limbs. He regrew his arm.....and this happened:
....not quite the desired effect.

Since his introduction the Lizard has battled Spider-man numerous times. While in his human form Connors has become a close ally to the web head. The character hasn't gotten a lot of love lately, and he's been called out dated and two-dimensional. I beg to differ. While the sympathetic scientist turned evil plot is one of the most well told, at the time of his creation it wasn't. It wasn't common for superheros to have villains they cared about. It was something new and fresh.

I believe with a creator that can give the Lizard motivation and direction, he can become an A list villain again. I'm tired of stories where Doc Connors gets turned and attacks spider-man, and that's the extent of of his appearance. No one knows what to do with him, and it's wasted potential. Give him more of a Jekyll/Hyde persona, rather then the Hulk syndrome. Have the Lizard consciously plot against Connors, He doesn't lose his intellect when he transforms, only becomes evil. A lot could be done with that. and please keep him out of purple pants......

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Mini-Rant time!

So one of the problems I feel is plaguing comics is the fact that the medium as a whole is simultaneously being marketed as both a more adult AND a more childish outlet then the books I grew up on. You have sex and violence in damn near every splash page, coupled with shallow writing and poor characterization.
Comics are a illustrative medium, equal parts visual and literature. One can't be crap or the book is going to be flawed. You have creators trying to shove two dimensional characters down our throats, or rehashes of old story lines, when they cannot bring anything new to the table. If you can't tell a story better, or at least from a fresh perspective do not re-tell us a plot line that has already been done to death, and please stop resurrecting characters without bringing anything fresh to that character.

case in point: The Amazing Spider-man.
I enjoy a lot more of the post brand new day Spider-man then most fans.........that being said, there is still a lot that I don't enjoy. Like Michelle Gonzales, and Black Cat, and Peter being a photographer, again.
Michelle Gonzales's one character trait is that she is a bitch. I'm sorry but that's all I've gotten out of her since she appeared. I'm assuming she is supposed to thought of as "independent" and "tough" but essentially taking advantage of a guy, getting pissed off because he regrets a one night stand, and punching him in the face are not ways to develop a character.
I like black Cat, I don't like how she's lost all of the character development she had from the past twenty years. She is being shown as someone who does not give a shit about Spider-man. selling his blood to the black market? how is that a smart move for anyone. And the "relationship" between her and Peter? I didn't mind it happening......but Peter should have realized his mistake and ended it....instead of bitching and whining after every roll in the spider sack.
That's my biggest complaint with his character: he's moving backwards. he's not learning anything, and he seems to have lost of lot of the lessons he's learned over the years. I understand that being a super hero is very taxing, but part of growing up is being able to manage more responsibilities, like a full time job, or paying your rent on time. Peter Parker being a teacher was believable and it fit the character. Making a character less mature is not how to relate to your readers. Give them something to look up to. I guess I just don't like a spider-man that's younger then I am.