Iron Fist Revealed!

I understand that Marvel Television in its ‘street-level’ heroes tends to seek a more grounded, realistic esthetic than those typically employed by Marvel Studios.

That probably has a lot to do with why of all the Defenders only one, Daredevil, has a costume (which is more in the vein of tactical armor than a costume, per se).

Jessica Jones and Luke Cage wear civilian clothes, as does Iron Fist (at least in the first season of his series).

And for awhile I thought that the latter in his civvies that might be a good decision, till I saw this image from the series.

 That’s Johnny Yang as an ‘Iron Fist’–which is less an individual than an honorific, though only one seems to exist in any given period of time–and he looks pretty awesome.

The way they muted the colors and gave the costume a very real-world feel works really well, and I would have been glad to see it in more detail.  It was technically in the series, though the footage of it was so (deliberately) blurry you couldn’t make heads or tails of it.

Maybe they kept it under wraps because Danny Rand (Finn Jones) in–hopefully The Defenders–tries to capture some of his lost history, and dons the costume as a result.

 

There’s No Anti-Venom For Dumb

According to The Wrap Sony is releasing a movie based on Venom–last seen in Sam Raimi’s 2007’s Spider-Man 3, which I will return to shortly–October 5th of 2018.

The ‘dumb’ is that this version of Venom will apparently  exist independently of Marvel Studios’ upcoming Spider-Man: Homecoming which is a bit odd since Venom was introduced in Spider-Man’s comic, so to not have these two characters interact with each other is a bit odd.

Now, let’s go back to Sam Raimi and Spider-Man 3.

Supposedly, he was so pissed with Avi Arad–a producer of the upcoming Venom movie with Matt Tolmack–for forcing him to put Venom in Spider-Man 3 that he hired Topher Grace to play the symbiont’s host (the implication being that that was the opposite of what Arad wanted).

And it leaked out, if I recall during the hack that put all of Sony’s business out for everyone to see, that Marvel Studios taking the reigns of the Spider-Man franchise was conditional on Avi Arad NOT being involved (it wasn’t the only condition, but it was an important one).

So now Sony is putting Venom–a character that exists in the Spider-Man universe–in the hands of Avi Arad; the guy responsible for overstuffing Spider-Man 3, and whom irritated  Kevin Feige (who appears to be a very easy-going guy) so much that Marvel Studios riding in and essentially saving Sony’s bacon was conditional on him not being involved.

Yeah, this is going to work out just fine.

Clothes Make The Inhu(Man)

Over the weekend Comicbook.com posted some images from Marvel Television’s upcoming The Inhumans and while I’m glad that their teleporting dog Lockjaw will be making an appearance the costumes might be just a little bit subdued.

By which I mean, here’s a picture of Black Bolt, the head of the Inhuman Royal Family.

He’s a pretty distinctive-looking character, to be sure.  And I get that Marvel Television might not want to go with something so ‘cartoony,’ especially considering this is likely their highest profile production thus far.

But could they be going too conservative? Below is actor Anson Mount  (who’s playing Black Bolt) and while there’s no way of knowing based upon one picture if this is his final costume, if it is it harkens back to the what the X-Men wore fourteen years ago.

Which is frankly, a little bit odd and potentially presents a problem because the acceptance of the Marvel Cinematic Universe among the general public has show us that as long as you treat these characters faithfully (also shown by the reception of movies like Man Of Steel and Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice, though in not a good way) people will pay to see them.
Which is important when you take into account that the first two episodes will appear in theaters, which is intended as a hook to draw  viewers into watching the television series.

Though as I mentioned earlier, at least apparently they’re not skimping on the awesomeness that is Lockjaw, which gives me hope that perhaps this is not Black Bolt’s final costume.

Raising Hell(boy)

When I read yesterday that the kibosh had been put on Hellboy III by none other than Guillermo Del Toro himself, I have to admit that I was a bit put out.

And what his account lacks in detail, it more than made up for in finality. 

As I said, I was a bit bothered, till I gave it some thought. The first Hellboy premiered in 2004, and like most projects Del Toro tackled, the love he felt for the subject matter saturated every frame.

The sequel, Hellboy II: The Golden Army came four years later, and managed to build on what was introduced in the first movie, while at the same time expanding on the world of the  B.P.R.D (the Bureau of Paranormal Research and Defense).

And as usual, it was a beautiful movie.  Del Toro was one of the first directors I can recall who used color to saturate a scene and I am confident in saying no one does so with more  assurance than he (the Underworld movies attempted a similar technique, but appeared heavy-handed compared to Del Toro’s use of the technique). 

So would I like to see another Hellboy movie?  Sure, especially since they managed to be unlike anything else produced at the time though as far as I am concerned, Del Toro (in movies) was Hellboy’s heart and soul and if he’s ready to turn the last page of this particular comic, then I am too.   

3 Reasons We Need to Stop Speculating Peter Dinklage Will Play M.O.D.O.K in Avengers: Infinity War

Some fan sites have speculated that Peter Dinklage (Game of Thrones, X-Men: Days of Future Past) would appear as M.O.D.O.K,  which stands for Mental Organism Designed Only for Killing in Marvel Studios’ upcoming Avengers: Infinity War (though I get the feeling the people who are making this suggestion are not only unaware who M.O.D.O.K is, but how ultimately insulting an idea that actually is

And speaking of ‘insulting,’ that’s also my first reason.

  • It’s Really Insulting Toward Dinklage

Here is an image of M.O.D.O.K.

He has such tiny arms and legs because he was created to lead AIM (Advanced Idea Mechanics) so all their efforts went toward developing his mental abilities, which are pretty impressive.

Now keep in mind that some characters don’t make the transition from comics to movies visually intact–this was the case for the Falcon, Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver, Zemo and many others so it’s entirely possible that M.O.D.O.K could be played by Dinklage and translate to the screen in such a way that is reminiscent of the character from the comics, yet reinterpreted, like with the case of Arnim Zola from Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

 

The problem is that M.O.D.O.K’s massive cabeza IS his most distinctive feature, and I am unsure how they could reinterpret that and capture how bizarre and unusual the character actually is.

Which is strangely enough where our problems start.

Here is a picture of Dinklage from the after party of The Station Agent.   He’s a person of short-stature, and while he’s played a whole gamut of roles I am not sure how playing a giant head doesn’t become more than a little offensive.

And while some people may call that PC, that’s just a cross I’ll have to bear.

  • AIM Has Barely Been Introduced Into the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe)

The organization known as AIM (Advanced Idea Mechanics) was introduced into the MCU in Iron Man 3 (in the movies it was a company started by Aldrich Killian, who developed Extremis) though it was one of those ‘blink and you’ll miss it‘ sort of moments.

With Hydra on the decline it would be nice for the movies to introduce another villainous organization to take up the slack, and AIM could serve that purpose admirably (plus we’d get a chance to see people wearing those cool yellow ‘beekeeper’ helmets, so there’s always that).

Though to introduce MODOK as a main villain means reintroducing AIM, something not likely to happen if Avengers: Infinity War has half the characters it’s supposed to have.

  • Most Importantly, M.O.D.O.K Has No Connection to the Infinty Gauntlet or Infinity Watch Storylines 

I am aware that Marvel Studios movies don’t adapt any storyline verbatim from the comics, though introducing  M.O.D.O.K would be worse than clutter because it would be adding a character and a supporting organization the film would hardly need.

So those are the reasons why Dinklage will not be M.O.D.O.K but instead be playing…

Pip the Troll!  It’s not exactly rocket science, and actually makes a lot of sense when you think about it.  Dinklage already looks like Pip, all that’s required to complete the look would be a shave and a loincloth (which isn’t necessarily to say that that’s the direction they’re going with visually, though if it is, it would be really work).

Marvel Television & Netflix: Sound & Vision In Harmony

While Marvel Studios is doing some amazing things in the movie space, we sometimes forget that Marvel Television is making waves of their own on the small screen.

And while they have been doing solid work with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Agent Carter arguably their strongest work so far has been the series that have have done with Netflix, Daredevil, Jessica Jones and Luke Cage.

Along with a distinctive visual palate, each series is aurally unique was well, each evocative of different places and/or eras.   

Daredevil opening sequence

Jessica Jones opening sequence

Luke Cage opening sequence

Daredevil’s theme was composed by John Paesano, Jessica Jones’ by Sean Callery and Luke Cage’s by Ali Shaeed Muhammad and Adrian Younge.

At this point I can’t wait to see and hear what Iron Fist and The Punisher bring!

The Hornet’s Sting Returns!

I have been a fan of comics since I learned to read–and in fact they contributed significantly to that happening–though eventually my love for the medium branched off into other adjacent areas fairly quickly.

One of my favorite offshoots was old-time radio.  I was an avid listener of the CBS Radio Mystery Theater in the  80’s and 90’s, though I also enjoyed shows from earlier, such as The Shadow and The Green Hornet

There was something fascinating about the Green Hornet.  Maybe it was for me he was Batman before there was a Batman with an added bonus of having an uber-competent assistant, Kato (played by Bruce Lee!). 

Though admittedly part of my admiration grew from watching him kick the stuffing out of Robin on the fun and campy Batman television series from the 1960’s.

The 2011 Seth Rogan and Jay Chou version of the Green Hornet and Kato were okay, but they moved away from the grittier elements of the radio shows, to a more comedic take. 

Though there’s talk of a reboot to be directed by Gavin O’Connor (Warrior, The Accountant), who’s known for his visceral, kinetic fare.  

He’s a prefect choice to bring the physicality and a brutalness to the project, which the 2011 movie lacked.