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Bullet Sunday 845

Posted on March 3rd, 2024

Dave!Wah! My weekend is already half over and I'm not ready for it to be Sunday! But Sunday it must be... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• Goonies Never Die! I watched this video reflecting on the career of Josh Brolin solely in the hopes that he would talk about Men In Black 3. That movie is so incredibly underrated. It's an amazing film. And a large part of that is Josh Brolin doing a Tommy Lee Jones impression... perfectly... for most of the runtime. And obviously GQ knew that's the thing everybody wanted to hear, so they saved it for last...

I sure wish that we could have heard more about his experience working on that movie.

• Otin! Oh man. The new Disney+ series, Iwájú, is Afrofuturism done very well... but it's so much more than that because there's like a lot going on. And it's very much steeped in Nigerian culture, which is to say that it's something wonderfully different than the same old shit we usually get. Bravo to Disney for giving us something fresh and new for a change. And for using amazing voice actors who breath life into these characters...

The characters of Iwájú.

The frickin' FOOD in this show is unreal. They put a lot of focus on it as a part of entrenching you into Nigerian culture. And, I tell you what, the emotion they pack into these 20 minute episodes is substantial. Tola is the main character of the show... but it's her best friend Kole who will break your heart. Dang they put a lot of hardship on this poor kid. The villain in this series is a very, very bad man! AND GOOD LORD THIS SHOW IS BEAUTIFUL. They use color to illustrate the class divide in this future Nigeria, and it's very, very hard not to see it because it's the visual language they paint with. And, as if all that wasn't enough, the sound design is equally wonderful. Great surround effects to envelope you in the environment. If you have Disney+, it's very much worth checking out. The episodes are short, so it's a quick watch.

• Ramona! Ramona Fradon is a legendary artist whose gorgeous illustration style has been seen on a vast number of comic book characters. I think I first saw her work on Aquaman reprints or the Super Friends comic. But over the years the thing I most remember her for is the "special event" Wonder Woman stories they'd get her to draw. She had a more "cartoony old-style" that wasn't my favorite for the comics I was into, but that didn't mean I couldn't appreciate it from an artistic standpoint. Far from it, her minimalist style is beautiful because she could get some very expressive line-work that stood very well on its own. I remember reading about her retirement (which was January 5th) and she passed four weeks later on February 24th at the age of 97. Her final work was a trio of covers for Women's History Month...

Though one of her more brilliant works was a private commission piece that she did a few years ago...

Rest In Peace. You were a trailblazer and true artist from the start.

• Help Me, Todd! Okay... let's do the math. Paramount+ wants $60 a year to subscribe with ads. Without ads is $120 a year. BECAUSE IT COMES WITH SHOWTIME, WHICH I DO NOT WANT! No option to get CBS shows without ads and without Showtime. I would pay $90 to get a year of ad-free, but Paramount is a joke of a company who wants me to subsidize their Showtime programs which I have no interest in watching. And so... do I pay $60 so I can watch So Help Me Todd with ads... or do I just subscribe to the show on iTunes for $30 without ads and I can watch it as much as I want? Well, because I don't believe in paying for stuff I don't want AND I detest ads, I'll just buy the show on iTunes. It is, after all, my favorite network show on television...

I just purchased So Help Me Todd on iTunes!

It's not like CBS has any other shows I can't live without. I'll just watch episodes of NCIS Hawaii once Paramount runs out of money from trying to force crap on people they don't want and they're forced to sell episodes of the show to Netflix because the person in charge of the company is a fucking moron. Can't wait for the spin from the Paramount PR office when profits drop to record lows and they have to convince shareholders that the people running the company aren't fucking idiots who just lost $60 from me. Of course, this is the network who canceled Magnum P.I., so it's not like I expect rational thought to come out of their leadership. But hey, maybe they'll renew So Help Me Todd and get another $30 out of me next year? Stranger things have happened!

• Keep Your Fucking Bullshit Politics Out of People's Lives! The insane... FUCKING INSANE... crusade against IVF is usually seen as something that affects only women. That's not true. It affects women, men, and those identifying as neither... it affects families. And I am disgusted to my core that dumbfuck politicians who don't give a shit about facts... or ANYTHING or ANYONE except MONEY and POWER... put these dipshit laws on the books. Fuck them and all the people who vote them into office. A man wrote an article for GQ Magazine talking about what he and his family went through, and it's worth a read.

• NEWSFLASH: Republican senator blocks bill to protect IVF. Cindy Hyde-Smith is a literal ghoul. She's a shell of a woman who has been filled with a hatred for other women that's shockingly brutal and cruel. Nothing quite like watching a woman embrace the patriarchy to dismantle an option for women who want to be mothers. I get why regressive men vote for toxic, misogynistic pieces of shit to represent them in government. But I will never in a million years understand how women vote for... whatever the fuck this horrific excuse of a human being is... who works overtime to endanger their lives and strip away their rights...

If your God didn't want IVF for us, HE WOULD HAVE DESIGNED HUMAN EMBRYOS TO BE DESTROYED WHEN FROZEN! But of course their belief in an all-powerful deity doesn't allow logic to be applied to anything, so here we are. Fucking anti-science dumbshits making a decision for others in the "Land of the Free" over an issue they probably don't even fucking understand. Sadistic fucks.

• Spam! Just when I think I've hit all the keywords to stop spam texts from politicians reaching me, along comes one more to add. Eventually I'll get there! I regret more than just about anything I've ever done sending money to one candidate... ONE... via "ActBlue." And the spam texts and emails have never, ever stopped ever since. No matter how many emails or phone numbers I block. The fuckers just keep making up new ones...

Spam keywords to stop poliician spam.

I love how ActBlue, which is about as skeezy an operation as you'll find just says "It's not our fault you keep getting donation requests from us... we just just provide tools for candidates to fundraise! You can't blame us!" And yet... all the people "using their services" are constantly saying "It's not the criminals! It's the guns that are the problem!" So... which is it? If ActBlue acted responsibly and forbade people from using their donation processing system if they send spam texts, and accepted complaints from people getting spammed with ActBlue requests who never "opted in," then there wouldn't be a problem. But ActBlue doesn't give a fuck. The more people using their service, the more money they make. And so I will never, ever donate to any candidate using ActBlue. I wish others would do the same. Then candidates would have nobody to blame but themselves for getting into bed with these fucking assholes.

• Fishy! The first Aquaman was dopey fun. So long as you didn't think too hard, it wasn't horrifically bad. Kind of a fantastical globe-spanning adventure. But Aquaman 2? Yeah, it's horrifically bad. And though some of the visuals are really great... most of it is so bad that it practically looked animated like a cartoon. And not in a good way. As if all that wasn't enough, the film is obsessed with Aquaman having piss be squirted in his mouth. Baby piss. Octopus piss. I spent the movie pretty sure that his wife is going to be pissing in his mouth any minute now. Or just full-on brick in his mouth. Which is the natural escalation we need. Hilariously, they ended Aquaman 2 the same way that they ended Black Panther... and THEN they ended it AGAIN the same way they ended Iron Man! They copied TWO Marvel Studios movie endings in the same film! Holy shit am I glad that the Zack Snyder reign of terror over the DCU is now officially over.

I guess that's enough trash for one Sunday. See you next week.


Ambush Bug Has Left The Building

Posted on October 16th, 2023

Dave!Keith Giffen has died.

If you're a comic book fan from the 1980's and 1990's, you're undoubtedly familiar with his work. He's created and co-created some of the best stories and characters of the day. His humor drove books like Lobo and Ambush Bug and the hilarious Justice League reboot. But my favorit of his works was with The Legion of Super-Heroes. He co-wrote amazing story arcs like The Great Darkness Saga and the highly underrated Five Years Later Saga. The first twelve issues of the latter were some deeply satisfying stories for long-time Legion fans like me...

Giffen Legion Cover

So many years of entertainment thanks to Mr. Giffen.

Rest in Peace, sir.


Quantumania Quibbles

Posted on April 20th, 2023

Dave!As a huge, huge, massively huge fan of all the Marvel Studios films, I was understandably looking forward to Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania. The first two Ant-Man films were a blast, Scott Lang was fantastic in Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Endgame, and Paul Rudd can literally do no wrong in my eyes.

It was finally released on home video, so I paid my $20 and tonight was the night...

Movie Poster for Ant-Man and The Wasp Quantumania

The movie was good. I was entertained. But it was a huge step down from the previous two movies in every way but one.

First of all... the fun was gone. There were humorous bits, but everything was far more serious than what I was expecting, and not in a good way. I think that Marvel put the setup for their upcoming Avengers: The Kang Dynasty movie ahead of letting Ant-Man be Ant-Man. And I don't understand why. The only thing I can guess is that this was the only way Marvel would agree to make the movie, and they ultimately didn't care about making sure the tone of the film was Ant-Man driven. And that's a shame, because yeah... the movies aren't making a billion dollars at the box-office... but they do make money, so why not let them be who they are?

Second of all, the Quantum Realm is 97% of the film, and Ant-Man (as created for the Marvel Cinematic Universe) works better in the Real World. The wacky, weird, bizarre, large stakes stuff can work when the character is surrounded by heroes able to make it work, but alone? Not so much.

I love Michael Douglas and Michelle Pfeiffer but they kinda took over the movie. I like the idea of Stature (Cassie Lang) joining the MCU, but she kinda took over the movie too. There just wasn't enough Ant-Man and The Wasp Ant-Man and The Wasp, and that was a bummer for me.

And now to that one thing that was better than the previous two... the villain.

Jonathan Majors is so incredibly talented. Easily the best thing to come out of the film. His every scene is tangibly menacing... while still still being fairly subdued. That's not easy to achieve. This has me really, really excited for the direction that Phase 5 is taking since he's the new Thanos...

It's Kang!

BUT THEN Major's domestic abuse charges happened. The woman who filed them has recanted... and his lawyer says there is video evidence to clear him... but his talent agency dropped him and he's been evicted from upcoming movies, which leads me to believe that there's something to the charges after all. I guess we'll find out after his trial. Depending on what happens there, Disney may drop him from all the upcoming movies he was set to appear in, at which point I guess he would be recast. Which would be a darn shame for Kang... but it's not like you can't not cancel the actor if there's evidence he's an abuser.

Ultimately, I'm not sure what this movie was supposed to achieve. I guess it was to introduce Kang, but Loki already did that. And the Kang that was introduced here didn't really tell you anything about Kang except he's a power-mad villain whose a very serious threat. And there are a lot of him coming down the pipe. But that could have been done in ten minutes in a more appropriate film. Devoting an entire Ant-Man movie to it was just way off base and a major misstep.

So... it is what it is.

But it could have been so much more.


They killed it. But it’s never their fault.

Posted on January 18th, 2023

Dave!NEWSFLASH: Major Layoffs Reported At Amazon And ComiXology.

I am a big comic book fan. I used to be a huge comic book fan. So much a fan that I have a small storage room devoted to housing my massive collection of books. Then the digital age was upon us... I was running out of room to store my comics... and so I made the painful transition from physical printed comics to the digital version that lives on the internet and takes no space at all.

It was a tough transition to make. There's something about the feel... the smell... the experience of reading a real comic book as opposed to staring at a computer or your iPad.

That being said, ComiXology made the experience as good as it could be. I mostly read my comics on a computer with a large screen so I could experience them as full page spreads as the artist (and God) intended. On an iPad I usually use "GuideView" which presents the comics panel-by-panel. Once I got my 12.9-inch iPad Pro it was a little easier to read full pages, but I often decided not to.

Then Amazon bought ComiXology.

And things were fine at first. You still went to ComiXology, you just signed in with your credentials from Amazon. Everything was fine.

Until it wasn't.

Amazon eventually folded ComiXology into their Kindle app, and it was fucking awful. Horrendous experience from start to finish. Even finding your comics was a shitty experience. I fucking hated it so much that I pretty much stopped buying digital comics. Now I only bother when something I want to read is on sale. Instead I wait for the trade paperback to be released and wither buy a physical copy or check it out from the library.

Amazon fucking destroyed ComiXology.

And though improvements have been made, it still sucks compared to the ComiXology experience that I bought into.

Now, to the surprise of absolutely nobody who has had to suffer through reading comics on Kindle, profits are down so Amazon is laying off a chunk of their "ComiXology" team (though why they call it that when they murdered ComiXology in favor of Kindle I have no idea).

I feel bad for the ComiXology team members losing their job because Amazon management fucked over their product so bad that nobody wants to use it. That's not fair. But that's Amazon for you. Jeff Bezos probably wants another super-yacht, so he's getting rid of a bunch of people so he doesn't have to dip into his $120 billion (or whatever).

And isn't that the way it always goes? People with insane wealth that they could never spend in dozens of lifetimes making life utterly miserable for people scratching out a living? Just look at Twitter.


Namor Forever

Posted on October 5th, 2022

Dave!The trailer for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever landed on Monday. I am still processing.

Because while I am excited to visit that world again (especially to see Okoye and M'Baku)... there is something a whole lot bigger that has me very excited for the movie.

And it's Prince Namor, The Sub-Mariner.

It's one thing to see movie stills where he's standing there looking cool as all getout... it's quite another to see him in action, winged feet and all. I MEAN JUST LOOK AT THIS...

Namor (AKA "The Sub-Mariner") has a long and complex history in the Marvel comic books (created in 1939!). His pink skin is inherited from his father (the Atlanteans are normally blue) but he's unique in one other very important way... he's a mutant. To be more precise... he's Marvel's first mutant. His ability to fly comes from neither his human or Atlantean side, and so this skill (along with his winged feet) are a mutation (which is kinda a huge deal in Marvel's comics, and soon to be a big deal in the Marvel Cinematic Universe)...

Prince Namor Floats into Wakanda.

Prince Namor Floats into Wakanda.

In the comics Namor bounces back and forth between being villain and hero (which I think has been explained by some kind of oxygen imbalance due to his Atlantean/human physiology). And it sure looks like that's the path he will be taking in Wakanda Forever as well. It is heavily implied that Namor is going to kill Ramonda (Black Panther's mom, amazingly portrayed by Angela Bassett), and this is what drives Shuri to become the new Black Panther (as seen at the end of the trailer).

Though, to be honest, I really hope that Shuri isn't the new Black Panther... I hope that honor goes to girlfriend (and perhaps widow) Nakia. Her fighting skills make her a far more suitable choice, and I think that Lupita Nyong'o would absolutely kill it in the role.

But anyway... Namor. I want to see him everywhere. I want him to guest-appear in other movies. I want him in his own movies. I want him in a Disney+ series. Just one more piece of my childhood slamming home, and I want to have a steady stream of appearances.

Because I'm greedy like that.


Enter The Sandmanses

Posted on August 5th, 2022

Dave!Sandman (on Netflix) is a fantastic adaptation of one of my favorite comic book series. And something I never thought I'd see happen despite numerous attempts to turn it into movies.

The 10-episode series is loyal to the source material... almost to a fault. There are segments which blew by in the comic at a brisk pace which have been dragged out to tedium to fill a one-hour runtime, and it hurt the series a bit. As an example, I wish I could have watched the fifth episode in 3X speed instead of the Netflix max of 1.5X because it was so slow and so tedious... attempting to fill 50 minutes with material that would have been a stretch at 20.

Much ado has been made about the "gender-swapping" and "race-swapping" of various characters. This is a bunch of rubbish, because these are not real-life people being portrayed, but fictional characters. "Death" being Black doesn't change a thing, and the actor they got to play her is fantastic, which is all that really matters...

Probably the biggest "controversy" (if you can call it that) was casting Gwendoline Christie as Lucifer. Now, in the comic book, it was never a secret that Neil Gaiman based his Lucifer on David Bowie at his most androgynous. So casting a woman... especially one as incredibly talented and nuanced as Gwendoline Christie... is not a stretch at all. I mean just look at this...

The casting of this series is impeccable... with one minor exception. I thought Patton Oswalt was distracting as Matthew (much as I love him in other stuff). But otherwise even small roles were cast with such care, and it enriched the series in every way.

So... yeah... worth the wait.

If you're a fan of the comic, you've likely already watched it. If not? Worth a look for sure.


Bullet Sunday 767

Posted on June 26th, 2022

Dave!The heat is on and my air conditioning is struggling to keep up... and so am I! But never fear... because an all new Bullet Sunday starts... now...

• SPACE LEGO! LEGO is re-releasing a couple of their most popular sets from days past, but updating them with modern pieces so that they appeal to modern LEGO consumers. The one I am sorely tempted to get is the "Galaxy Explorer"... one of my favorite sets of all time...

It looks so good. Similar to what made the old set so great... but with some very cool changes. But, alas, that's a wad of cash I don't have burning a hole in my pocket!

• Day-Old Goodness! Why is it that baked spaghetti always tastes better the next day? Yesterday I made garlic bread from scratch and put together a nice baked spaghetti to go with it. The stuff was amazing. But today's lunch? Even better!

Delicious baked spaghetti!

I cook spaghetti as usual... but make my own sauce so I can use tomato paste instead of thinner tomato purée. Mix it together with the noodles and cheese. Put into an oven-proof container with lid (I use a large skillet), then bake at 325º for a half-hour. That way you get a lovely dry "sauce" that's really concentrated and sticking to the noodles instead of making a wet, sloppy mess everywhere. I top with toasted almond slices, parmesan, diced chives and Italian parsley. Food of the gods!

• A Legend Passes. I forgot to mention last Bullet Sunday how sad I was to learn that legendary comic book artist Tim Sale passed away. The guy was only 66, so this is a tough loss to take. Tim Sale was highly gifted, and worked on some characters and titles that cemented his upper-echelon status with fans. Rest in peace, sir.

• ALEXA, STOP!!! Alexa used to be so good. But then Amazon Alexa added a bunch of shitty bloat that nobody gives a crap about to fuck over the service. She regularly gets simple requests wrong now EVEN WHEN SHE UNDERSTANDS WHAT YOU SAID, whereas Google Assistant ACTUALLY WORKS. Embarrassing as fuck for Amazon to just toss it all away like this. Also? Alexa acknowledged the command in my bedroom (where I’m at)... but then played the song in the bathroom down the hall? WTF?!?

Alexa heard 'Play Dance by Fly by Midnight'

At first I thought... "Well, maybe Amazon Music doesn't have the song?" But nope. There it is...

Dance by Fly by Midnight exists in the Alexa catalog for Amazon Music

I never had problems like this even two years ago. Now it's almost every day.

• Mr. Bats! I've shared this video before. But this morning I ran across it again and was compelled to share it again because it's one of the most adorable things I've ever seen...

That bat really likes bananas! I've always loved bats, and it's just crazy to me that there are people who don't... especially considering how incredible they are for the environment and controlling pests!

• How Stupid Are We?! Apparently very stupid. We keep ignoring the serious problems facing us. And it's not like there aren't actual solutions out there, it's just that we're not looking into them. Take our disappearing water supply, for example...

God forbid we don't stop building golf courses out in the middle of a dessert and adopt water-saving solutions instead of creating more water-consuming problems.

Enjoy your Summertime Sunday heat without me! I'm stying indoors.


Thank You, George Pérez

Posted on May 7th, 2022

Dave!It was announced that George Pérez, one of my favorite comic book writers and artists of all time, has died at 67 years old. The guy had been battling for a while now, so it shouldn't have been unexpected... but it still felt that way. Before I started seeing his work in comics, I didn't really think about the art on the books I read. Some of it was better than others, but I just didn't take much note of it. What I most definitely did take note of was when George started penciling The Avengers at Marvel. His hyper-detailed pages were imaginative, brilliant, and thrilling to look at. I was in love with his work from the moment I first saw it.

Then he was on The New Teen Titans and suddenly the entirety of comic book fandom was taking note. Then he ended up on Justice League and it was comic book heaven for me.

Then came Crisis on Infinite Earths, after which he rebooted Wonder Woman, which I remember thinking was a total waste of his talents at the time. Then the book was actually released, of course I bought it because I bought everything George did, and it ended up being my favorite thing that he ever worked on...

Rest in Peace, sir. You and your work will be very much missed.

To all of George’s fans and friends,
Constance here, with the update no one wants to read. George passed away yesterday, peacefully at home with his wife of 490 months and family by his side. He was not in pain and knew he was very, very loved.
We are all very much grieving but, at the same time, we are so incredibly grateful for the joy he brought to our lives. To know George was to love him; and he loved back. Fiercely and with his whole heart. The world is a lot less vibrant today without him in it.
He loved all of you. He loved hearing your posts and seeing the drawings you sent and the tributes you made. He was deeply proud to have brought so much joy to so many.
Everyone knows George’s legacy as a creator. His art, characters and stories will be revered for years to come. But, as towering as that legacy is, it pales in comparison to the legacy of the man George was. George’s true legacy is his kindness. It’s the love he had for bringing others joy - and I hope you all carry that with you always.
Today is Free Comic Book Day. A day George absolutely loved and a fitting day to remember his contributions to comics and to our lives. I hope you’ll enjoy your day today with him in mind. He would have loved that.
Please keep his wife Carol in your thoughts and again, I thank you for respecting her privacy. I remain available through the contact on the page.
George's memorial service will take place at MEGACON Orlando at 6pm on Sunday, May 22nd. It will be open to all. Details to follow.
We will miss him always.

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Comic Book News Day

Posted on December 7th, 2021

Dave!My comic book news day started with good news... Shang-Chi 2 is a go with Marvel Studios. But then I read the gut-wrenching news that brilliant comic book artist George Pérez has inoperable pancreatic cancer with months to live and there was no amount of good news that could compensate.

So many comic books I bought simply because George Pérez was drawing them. I bought every magazine I could find where he discussed his art and career. Every book, every special, every interview, every everything. His revival of Wonder Woman remains my favorite version of the character. His interpretation of The Scarlet Witch remains one of the best super-hero costumes ever created (and the sexiest). And nobody draws a team book like George. Absolutely nobody. There are many comic book artists whom I enjoy... but there's only one George Pérez. And while I am sad to hear of his latest setback, I temper my sadness with the knowledge that his work will live on. He has left us a legacy so amazing that it cannot help but endure.

In other comic book news, The AV Club ranked all the Marvel TV shows. It's kind of hard to take any list seriously that doesn't have The Inhumans in dead-last place... but a lot of their reasoning is sound (except with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., which I can never understand how people actually enjoyed). Just for kicks, here's my ranking...

  1. Agent Carter
    This series was sublime. Haley Atwell made every scene worth watching. And while it took a nosedive in the second season, that didn’t diminish my hope that we’d get a third. I still want it.
  2. Loki
    While a bit more esoteric than I was hoping for, I did like that they found a way to make the character interesting. It would have been so much easier to make him trade on his one-note villainy, but they took him in an entirely different direction while still letting him be Loki. Since we’re getting a second season I hope that they figure out how to avoid a sophomore slump that would be all too easy after the way the first season ended.
  3. Daredevil
    This one had a rocky start, but ultimately managed to do the character justice. The casting of Charlie Cox as Matt Murdock was flawless, and has me really hoping that the character crosses over into the MCU proper. And then there’s Vincent D’Onofrio who nailed his performance as The Kingpin so thoroughly that it seems impossible that they can’t pull him into the MCU somehow.
  4. Luke Cage
    This series might have taken my top spot if the second season was better. I didn’t like the storyline they had going and it was weirdly paced. But that first season? The guy WAS Luke Cage. Another series that should come to the MCU, Mike Colter and all.
  5. Falcon & Winter Soldier
    This series had a lot to love, starting with the undeniable chemistry that comes out of Anthony Mackie and Sebastian Stan. But it was a lot of setup for stuff that may or may not ever pay off. I wish they would have concentrated on a good show for The Falcon and The Winter Soldier first and MCU-building second.
  6. WandaVision
    A critical darling that never quite landed with me. The whole TV gimmick was clever, but I would have rather seen them actually have a story that focused on the super-heroes that are Scarlet Witch and The Vision. Yes, there were some clever, emotional, and smart moments that made me take notice... but I wanted something else.
  7. Jessica Jones
    Another bit of flawless casting... this time married to some really good, thought-provoking stories. Kristen Ritter’s Jones is another character that should just walk across to the MCU and give us another couple seasons on Disney+.
  8. What If
    While they tried to tie it all together at the end, it was frustrating seeing so many of these episodes not really end. And when you think about the finale, they don’t really actually ever have an ending. Still, I am looking forward to more.
  9. Legion
    I think if I were watching this now I might enjoy it more. But I watched with the full knowledge of who the character is in the comics and what ties he has to the X-Men and couldn’t escape the idea that we were being short-changed.
  10. The Punisher
    I enjoyed the series and thought that Jon Bernthal did a great job with the material he was given. Unfortunately what he was given was kinda weak. Sure there were bright spots to be had, but not enough of them to really get me invested in the series.
  11. MODOK
    Funnier than it had a right to be, I did start to get bored as the series progressed. They had their idea, they stuck to that idea, then rode it right to the end. Sometimes that works, but in this case it felt like they could have done more. Still... darn funny in spots.
  12. The Defenders
    It is inconceivable that they managed to get Sigourney Weaver for this series... which wasa everything that four other Netflix series were leading up to... and they kind of shoved her aside. I mean, come on. Sigourney can do loads with the smallest of parts (look at her amazing albeit small contribution to the movie classic Paul) so even if your time was limited you could have still given her a compelling villain to play. Instead we were left a bit disappointed.
  13. Cloak & Dagger
    Two good actors... New Orleans as a location... based on an interesting comic book concept... how could you go wrong? Well, you could go seriously wrong if you were to drag things out and make the show more about Tandy and Tyrone than Cloak and Dagger. When their powers were going on and being used creatively, this show sang. But most of the time I was bored, bored, bored.
  14. Iron Fist
    Where to start? The show was always going to be problematic by having a white guy be a martial arts master trading on an ancient power that comes out of Asia. But then they just made the stories so bad. SO bad. And Finn Jones really never embodied the character (especially in the first season). What really sucks is that by the end of the second season we were finally getting to an interesting place... just before it was canceled. Where they ended is where they should have started, because the character CAN be interesting.
  15. Agents of SHIELD
    Despite loving Agent Phil Coulson, I detested this series. It was comically bad. And every time people would tell me “No! It’s getting good now!” I would tune in only to find that it was just as bad as when I had left it. Then it went all "Agents in Space" and built weak-ass ties to The Inhumans for something I didn’t like even a little bit from start to finish.
  16. Runaways
    I could NOT get into this show, even though the concept in the comics was pretty great. In the end I think they skimped too much on what could have happened with a bigger budget and interesting stories.
  17. The Gifted
    Yeah, this was pretty much a disaster from the first episode. Trying to do the X-Men without the actual X-Men is a recipe for disappointment and I never made it past episode three.
  18. Helstrom
    The show never really had a chance and I cannot fathom why Hulu bothered to make it in the first place. A Marvel series that’s not a Marvel series with no ties to Marvel shows? WTF? It could have been different if they at least made it interesting. But they watered down an already watered down concept which left a bland show that didn’t know what to do with itself.
  19. Inhumans
    Lord. Not only the worst Marvel show ever made... one of the worst television shows ever made. Period. Just like Odo the shape-changing alien than never changed shape on Deep Space Nine, here’s a TV show with super-powered characters that never really did anything super. And they made it clear that’s what they were going for from the jump when they cut off Medusa’s hair... her only power. Awful stories with awful performances and laughable special effects that sold absolutely nothing. Every frame of the show was shoddy and cheap, and it makes zero sense how it ever came out of Marvel Studios. They should have just buried it rather than let it tarnish Marvel’s hard-earned reputation.

Still trying to wrap my head around The AV Club thinking that Helstrom was somehow worse than The Inhumans.


Worst of the Worst

Posted on November 24th, 2021

Dave!Last night when I turned on the television so I had background noise running while I work, a movie recommendation popped up. X-Men: Dark Phoenix. I was floored. Why in the hell would they be recommending the worst super-hero comic book movie ever made? And then I was like... wait... second worst. Because first on that list is Wonder Woman '84, and no other movie will likely dethrone it from the top spot.

At least I sure as hell hope not.

It got me to thinking about all the horrible super-hero comic book films that got made, so I thought I'd run through those I remembered.

  • Wonder Woman '84
    What makes this horrifically shitty film so painful is that the first Wonder Woman film was so amazing. But this time we get plot holes so inexplicably huge and a story so embarrassingly stupid that it's impossible to believe that everybody who was involved has anything to do with the original. And yet... they were. In addition to one of the stupidest fucking villains with one of the the stupidest fucking powers doing the stupidest fucking things, we also got Wonder Woman pulling powers out of her ass left and right in a way that made you think she can do whatever the hell she wants to do. Plus a bizarre take on The Cheetah which is disappointing enough to put this film on the list all by itself. As if all that weren't enough, there was no internal logic or consistency. Patty Jenkins and the writers didn't give a shit about making anything make sense. So we end up with functional planes being gassed up and ready to go at a museum and scores of other idiotic dumbassery that makes this not even the worst comic book movie ever made... but one of the worst films ever made period.
  • ALL X-Men Films (except First Class)
    Anything that Bryan Singer touches goes to shit, and nowhere is that more blatantly apparent than his grotesque take on the X-Men. At first, I was willing to cut them some slack because technological limitations of the time made depicting all their various powers difficult and expensive. BUT THEY COULD STILL COME UP WILL STORIES THAT WEREN'T SHIT! My God. They just kept getting progressively worse... then there was the bright spot we got with the prequel X-Men: First Class... only to have Bryan Singer come back and take a massive steaming dump all over everything. To add insult to injury, they wrapped everything up with Dark Phoenix, which is about the worst take of them all. Thank God Marvel Studios have the licensing back. I am praying that they manage to come up with something actually good for a concept that has never made great movies.
  • Superman Returns
    Not content to let Bryan Singer fuck up the X-Men, DC Comics wanted to let him ruin Superman as well, allowing him to effectively kill the franchise for a second time. And it was really too bad, because I thought Brandon Routh made a fantastic Superman. But even a group of talented actors couldn't save the shitty story... which was essentially a bad retread of the original Superman. That being said, there is one solitary moment in this film that I thought was incredibly well done. It's after Superman has been taken to the hospital and is dying. Out side is a throng of people waiting for news to see whether he's alive or dead. In the crowd is Martha Kent. Even though she's Superman's mom, she has to wait outside with everybody else because nobody knows that Clark Kent is Superman. It's absolutely heartbreaking, and made you realize that there was probably a good film in this mess somewhere... it's just that Bryan Singer was incapable of finding it.
  • Superman III and Superman IV: Quest for Peace
    The reason these hit so hard for me is that Superman: The Movie and Superman II were so sublimely good. And that was after the Salkinds ripped the movie away from Richard Donner and tried their best to fuck them up. Christopher Reeve was Superman. But, even more important, he was Clark Kent. Then you drop in a flawless Gene Hackman as Lex Luthor... plus some incredibly ambitious stories... and it was absolute magic (then they brought back the Donner cut of Superman II and it was as if every fanboy's prayers had been answered). But then they made two sequels that went beyond bad, and the only thing left was Christopher Reeve. Good as he is, even he can't make something out of nothing.
  • Man of Steel and Batman vs. Superman and Justice League
    Zack Snyder had one good movie (300) and one okay movie (Watchmen) and apparently that was enough for DC Comics to hand over the keys to the entire DC Comics Cinematic Universe. The result was an absolute disaster that, in some ways, is even worse than the Bryan Singer movies because at least Snyder had cutting-edge special effects to make his movies work. Unfortunately, he decided that enduring characters which people had been loving for decades needed "improving upon" and put his own spin on things. And apparently his whole plan was to come up with shitty, convoluted stories which revolve around deadly-serious, dreary, boring, films that are utterly devoid of joy... or common sense. And while the casting is mostly good, there were some bone-headed decisions for critical characters (see: Lex Luthor) that were so horribly off the mark that the films would have been sabotaged even if they were actually good. Which they were definitely not.
  • Fantastic Four, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, Fantastic Four
    How you can fuck up a Fantastic Four movie is a real head-scratcher. But Fox managed to do it three times over. I'm just going to ignore the first two and focus on the attempted reboot in 2015, because it's the one which is really driving this. It was awful. Beyond awful. Not a damn thing made any sense and the casting was inexplicably bad (ironically the casting that was the most controversial, Michael B. Jordan as Human Torch, was the only thing that worked for me). And then there's the fact that the Fantastic Four never even show up until the very end. Lord, what a waste.
  • Catwoman
    Yet another case of flawless casting being utterly destroyed by a horrible story. Halle Berry deserved far better. As did we all.
  • The New Mutants
    Why? Just... why? The idea of a super-hero comic book movie being given a horror slant is not a bad one. On the contrary, it seemed like a good idea for something new. The problem is that they fucked it up from start to finish and it failed all genres that it stepped in. Wasn't scary. Wasn't exciting. Wasn't a comic book movie. Wasn't much of a film. In all honesty, Disney should have just stuck this 20th Century Fox mess in a vault and never let it seen the light of day. Not that it matters. Anybody who ever saw it likely forgot about it within 24 hours. Or wish they had.
  • Green Lantern
    They wise enough to make the decision to cast Ryan Reynolds as Hal Jordan and Mark Strong as Sinestro... so what the hell went so terribly wrong? EVERY. OTHER. DECISION. Where's the fucking story? Green Lantern could have been a story of cosmic scope that defied belief. But instead they just utterly trashed the character for no good reason. Everything from his hideously bad CGI costume to the gawdawful take of both Parallax and Hector Hammond as "villains" just made this so very, very disappointing.
  • Batman Forever and Batman and Robin
    The first two Batman films were Tim Burton weirdness that didn't 100% work... but they were at least entertaining. And they gave us Michelle Pfeiffer Catwoman, so there's that. But then Joel Schumacher took over and gave us these stupid, campy films which had so many poor decisions piled up that there was no room for actual Batman stories in them. It was made doubly bizarre, because the casting wasn't exactly terrible... Jim Carrey as The Riddler? Perfect. Tommy Lee Jones as Two-Face? Great. Uma Thurman as Poison Ivy? Nice! Alicia Silverstone as Batgirl? Flawless. Arnold Schwarzenegger as Doctor Freeze? Weird, but okay. Chris O'Donnell as Robin? Too old, but I get it. And even Val Kilmer and George Clooney weren't terrible choices for Batman. Which means it all comes down to the writing and direction, which was embarrassing in a way that even the 1960's television show couldn't beat.
  • Elektra
    I think had they invested the money so the script could have revolved around an actual story, an Elektra spin-off was a great idea. But instead they cheaped out, leaving us with something that was bizarrely detached from the character that Jennifer Garner created in Daredevil.
  • Spider-Man 3
    The first two Toby Maguire films were darn good. Better than they had a right to be, actually. But then things went completely off the rails. Sam Raimi crammed in too many villains in too many ways with too many bizarre turns for this movie to have any hope at all. But the thing that just dropped this one in the gutter was the way they completely trashed all the characters. Mary Jane was written horribly. Peter Parker (under the influence of the symbiote) became devoid of everything that makes Peter Parker be Peter Parker. And then there's Venom... a villain which was made a laughable shadow of the character that was established in the comics. So many bad choices. They say that the studio interfered with what Sam Raimi wanted to do, which makes a lot of sense. But is inexplicable given the success he had with the first two films.
  • Amazing Spider-Man and Amazing Spider-Man 2
    After screwing up the Toby Maquire franchise, Sony decided to take another shot at the character and rebooted Spidey with Andrew Garfield. Ultimately you have to wonder why they bothered, because they didn't really do anything new. On the contrary, they went back to arcs that were already explored with the first trilogy, then made things so horribly complicated with Peter's dead parents being spies (or whatever) that it was as if they didn't feel Spider-Man could carry a movie. Which is understandable... Sony had a Spider-Verse to build. Alas, those plans were scrapped when Amazing Spider-Man 2 bombed.
  • Hulk
    Ang Lee taking on The Hulk seems like a dream come true. But the movie was just not very entertaining. There were some ideas that were cool enough... but there just wasn't much going on past that. It was seriously troubling that the script's many problems weren't worked out before filming ever started. The fact that they weren't is really difficult to understand. I guess they just trusted Ang Lee to figure it out, but ultimately he didn't want it to be the super-hero movie that it needed to be and we got this. In truth, the follow-up film wasn't a heck of a lot better, but at least they tried to make Hulk be Hulk.

Yikes. More than I thought I'd remember. It's almost as though I should rewatch all the Marvel Studios movies for the hundredth time so I can have good super-hero comic book movies back in my head.


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