Tag Archives: Superheroes

What is Sacred for Comic Book Adaptations?

With the marked increase in movies and TV shows that are based off of comic books there is the equal increase of the outcry around how the comics are adapted for the screen. At the same time I feel like you will hear one person yelling about how an adaptation handled a certain character and then only a short while later someone will point out how this one comic run fits perfectly with this adaptation of the character. It’s just that there’s decades worth of comics to draw from.

Not the image I first saw like this on Facebook... the one I liked had different TV and movie jokers over time, and the comics that they looked like.

Not the image I first saw like this on Facebook… the one I liked had different TV and movie jokers over time, and the comics that they looked like.

A prime example being the new Joker as portrayed by Jared Leto. When images were initially shown of the new Joker people got up in arms saying it was not really the Joker, but then others started showing that actually there are comics that fit with this new look for the Joker. Then the question is raised about what from comic books are sacred when considering an adaptation if there can be so many differences between the comics?

Now I have only been reading comics in the last few years really, but even so it is easy to find places where there are inconsistencies between stories. Now in comics this can be explained either through the use of alternate universes or from just continual reboots of the stories themselves. So what are the things that usually don’t change?

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Which side will Spider-Man end up on in Civil War?

Happy Tax Day in the US! I figure that makes it a good day to talk about somebody with money problems, right?

From https://www.facebook.com/thegeekstrikesback/ Also, the "We have money" page is from Hickman's Avengers!

From https://www.facebook.com/thegeekstrikesback/
Also, the “We have money” page is from Hickman’s Avengers!

Spider-Man! On one hand, it’s exciting that Marvel worked out a deal with Sony to be able to include him in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. On the other hand, there are so many characters already in Captain America: Civil War that I don’t know that too many people’s opinions went from “not-seeing” to “seeing” this movie just because of Spider-Man…

However, in terms of the comic storyline of Civil War, having Spider-Man appear gives them a lot of storytelling ground to walk. In the comics, Spider-Man switched sides and it made some sense… will they pull off the same thing in the movie? Let’s talk that through, and then end in a prediction poll!

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Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice Review

Guys, it’s not as bad as everyone says. However, I have a few contributing factors to why I might think that:

  • I haven’t seen Man of Steel, so I have no comparison to that movie.
  • I love Zack Snyder, and his partnership with Hans Zimmer made me really excited for the movie. Definitely worth it.
  • I’m Team Wonder Woman. I wanted to see a female superhero in DC who was a total badass. The whole Batman and Superman thing was a bit secondary to me.
  • I had very, very low expectations of the movie. Honestly, I was hoping it was at least a 5/10. Low expectations helped.
  • I’m currently on vacation back home and saw this at an Alamo Drafthouse, drinking beer after a couple of margaritas. Alcohol definitely helped.

Instead of doing a huge analytical review, I’m going to focus on a few points that stood out to me. There’s enough reviews out there tearing this movie apart or trying to defend it. This review is coming from someone with a film degree who isn’t a huge Superman fan, had low expectations of the film, and was mildly… okay, definitely, buzzed the whole movie.

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Science Fiction Today – Terrorism

Well, today’s another awful day. I’ve seen plenty of people posting their support of the people of Brussels and Belgium and who were there, and our hearts and  prayers go out as well.

Pray for Brussels

But as Holly mentioned yesterday, we take the awful stuff in the world today, and step back. Step forward. We look at them through the lens of Science Fiction stories.

And I’m sad to say, Science Fiction stories still see a lot of terrorism in the future. It seems it will remain a way for a smaller force to deal with a larger one, for an occupied force to deal with an occupier. For one dissatisfied person to take out all their frustration and send a message.

For instance, I think that Science Fiction was probably the original home of cyber terrorism. Sure, it became more mainstream, but it was originally near-future nerd stuff. And it still shows up in TV shows and such as far more interesting and useful and powerful than it is in real life… far more Science Fiction.

And if you count some of superhero fiction as Science Fiction, then we certainly see it there too, often in a world somewhat like our own today. Really, a lot of what happens in those stories – especially when you step away from the incredibly super-powered folks – is a story of organized crime and domestic terrorists versus vigilantes. Maybe wider terror groups, working on recruiting, like the League of Assassins or the Hand. We’ve been watching Daredevil season 2 – lots of things you could call terrorism there.

In Science Fiction, you see Utopias. One of the best is Star Trek. And even there, we definitely see terrorism. Khan is the perfect example. However, the Bajorans – fighting a Cardassian occupation – absolutely also are an example, and that’s pretty much the setting for Deep Space Nine. So it’s not like it’s something that’s just a one-shot in an episode, it comes up many times. From re-watching Next Generation, I remember Ro Laren having to infiltrate a terrorist resistance group. It wasn’t easy for her, because you get close to them, and you find out they might be human…

And Science Fiction also tells us a lot about Dystopias… generally the result of a cataclysmic event that leads to a response towards security, and terrorism seems a part. Sometimes before, sometimes after. Like V for Vendetta, where one man’s terrorism exposes a dictatorship and pulls it down.

But the dictatorship, the Dystopia, can form because of terrorism too, it’s not solely an answer. After these sorts of things, we want vengeance. We want justice. We want it to stop. And things happen that, in hindsight or over time, we see to be a bridge too far. And often, this is what Science Fiction writers are warning us about, when they write about Dystopias. Beware those impulses to sacrifice our liberties, to strike out too broadly or too blindly.

In many ways, I hope they’re all wrong. I hope that we find ourselves in a future with peace.

How we got to Civil War

One of the more highly anticipated movies of the year (now that Deadpool is out…) is the next Marvel movie, and the beginning of their Phase 3: Captain America: Civil War.

And there’s a lot of reasons to be excited: not only a bunch of returning characters from throughout the Marvel Cinematic Universe (like most of the newly-expanded roster of Avengers), but also the first appearances of Black Panther, Spider-Man (who hasn’t shown up in any trailers yet!), and maybe more.

Add to that the fact that Civil War was a big deal in the comics, showing up regularly as a top storyline for Marvel. It ran as a massive crossover (hitting pretty much every title) from 2006-2007. So, before I got back into comics – not one that I got into when it was first out. Indeed, I only got to it for the LitFlix for Winter Soldier – and after seeing that movie, and reading the comics, I knew that Civil War was coming next.

But Marvel’s Civil War was by no means the first time that this storyline was seen – the decision that superheroes had gone too far, that they had too much free reign. Indeed, not the second time. Not the third. I would say at least the fourth – so let’s look through these titles before we get back to Civil War!

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