Sunday, September 22, 2019
This week news broke that possibly Robert Downey, Jr will be making an appearance in the Black Widow movie that is scheduled for early 2020. This movie, which is a flashback movie long before the events of the Avengers, would seem to force Tony Stark into Black Widows movies and it has me wondering why is that?
Black Widow in the MCU movies has more than held her own. From her appearance in Iron Man 2 through Winter Soldier and Civil War, she has always held her own against heroes and villains; even without any "super powers". Thing how awesome she was in the Avengers movies playing such a key role in each movie; even up until her death.
Her solo movies, which probably shoulda been made years ago, seems like a slam dunk. There is a rich back history of her past as an assassin, the teased Red Room, and of course, Budapest which is name checked in 2 different Avengers movies. None of those things are associated with Tony Stark, so why would they be calling RDJ to feature in her debut? I have a theory!!!
As much as people love Black Widow, Scarlett Johannsson has become problematic AF. In doesn't take much Google searching over the past couple of years where she sticks her foot in her mouth and has to moonwalk it back after her PR folks, and probably Disney get to her. In the past two years, she took a role in Ghost in a Shell when knowing damn well that role should be played by an Asian/Japanese actress. She took the role and then tried to play it off like it was not a big deal and its a huge deal. Then, she was set to play a trans actor in a movie role and doubled down again with some any actor can play any role bullshit and again, she was forced to drop that project after public uproar or stealing a role from a marginalized group of people. AND then, she did an interview defending both taking the trans role and the Asian role which further alienated her from certain fans who liked her in the MCU movies. And then this month, she noted that she loved Woody Allen and would act in his pedophile ass movies again. And that is the thing about ScarJo, her whole Hollywood persona is basically white feminism; the ability to do whatever she wants yet not include other marginalized groups in the battle against patriarchy. She takes what she wants and when she wants it to the damnation of those who are struggling.
I can only imagine Disney/Marvel reading this stuff and thinking, " would you please shut the fuck up?" There is much goodwill with Black Widow from the movies, but she keeps talking and pushing away people who would generally support this movie. The idea that we can separate the artist from their bullshit is just that.... bullshit. If I do not care for the actor playing in the movies, I am not seeing that movie; no matter how good it is. Case in point, Hustlers looks like a good movie, but I don't mess with JLo so its a full no for me. And the same is going to be with Black Widow and that really does suck because there is a huge lack of women in superhero starring roles. The genre is totally white male dominated and having a woman star in her own movie... even tho its another white woman, is still something that needs support so we can get more movies and hopefully movies with women of color. But seeing this movie will just embolden her to keep being problematic and I don't think I can do it.
I think Disney is thinking about fans like me. They know she is problematic so what do they do- they call to the bullpen and bring out their number 1 closer, RDJ. People love RDJ and seeing him or even potentially seeing him in another MCU movie will move fans on the fence into the movie theater and make them put their hate of ScarJo to the side for 2 hours. I get it and its fantastic marketing but I am not sure if its gonna work on me.
So what do ya'll think: Just a coincidence RDJ is rumored in this movie or Disney heading off problematic ScarJo?
Word on the social media streets is that the people at Marvel/Disney were looking to cast Hollywood legend, Denzel Washington as Magneto in the upcoming X-Men reboot whenever that happens for Disney. Of course, the Internet being what it is, had thousands of hot takes from people loving the idea and people loathing the idea. Like most things, reality often lies in the middle and no matter which side you fall on, the only certain thing is that Denzel would instantly be the best actor the MCU has seen in whatever role he takes.
Those who oppose Denzel as Magneto cite Magneto's history as a Holocaust survivor and his Judaism. And yes, those are important aspects to the character of Magneto and helped shaped his view on the conflict between humans and mutants. However, you could manipulate that history and make him a survivor of a multitude of atrocities and still have him have that negative view towards humanity. Its often funny that comic book fans only want to stick strictly to the comics when the character is white and is looking to be gender or race bent to fit into a movie. I mean honestly, who could Disney/Marvel find that would be a better actor than Denzel Washington? He would bring instant credibility to a role and character that demands the actor playing have a certain gravitas.
Those who are for the casting cite the correlation between the Civil Rights movement and the differences between Martin Luther King and Malcom X and how their differences often parallel the differences between Erik and Charles. There have been conflicting reports on how Stan Lee based those Magneto and Charles on MLK and Malcom X but regardless of that, having a Black actor play off against a white actor where race is central to the story, would be fascinating.... and this is probably why it wont happen.
Look, Disney knows that fans are chomping at the bit to get a solid X-Men movie. No matter how you feel about the Fox movies, even the good ones are a bit lacking in certain areas. Its probably why Marvel/Disney has taken their time with rolling out any information about the mutants and X-Men because they know if they do this correctly, they are looking at making Avengers money. And that is the reason they wont take this huge leap and cast Denzel as Magneto. Its not because hes not a great actor or they couldn't craft a story around him playing Magneto, its that they do not want to court the controversy of doing it. Call them scared or call them bold, Disney is not going to mess with this money train as they look to recoup all the money they paid for these Fox properties.
So, no Denzel Washington as Magneto in my humble opinion. I hope I am wrong because it would set social media on fire when they announced and I love watching the world burn.
If not Magneto, who would you like to see Denzel play in the MCU... and don't say Blue Marvel!!!
Tuesday, August 20, 2019
21 of Sonji Wortham's Favorite Things
The other members of Brothascomics did a tribute to The Female Perspective a month ago. It was heartfelt and genuine and appreciated, However she was much, much more to me. Today, August 20th, 2019 is her 51st Birthday and my gift is for you to know more about the person and not just the moniker.
1. Her favorite Male Solo Musical Artist was David Bowie. Sting and Jimi Hendrix are close. There is a traveling David Bowie Archive going around the World. If it made it to Atlanta, we were going
2. Her favorite Female Solo Artist was the Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin. She also liked Chaka Khan and Gladys Knight. She wanted to go to Aretha's Funeral last year. We should have...
3. Her Favorite Rock Group was The Police. We saw them after they were elected to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. I bought two tickets for 270. 00. She bought her own ticket and we watched the concert 20 rows apart.... FUCK
4.Her Favorite R&B group was Earth,Wind and Fire. Their music is timeless. She would ask to hear Fantasy and magically Phillip Bailey would appear.....
5. Her Favorite 1980's Video group was Duran Duran. Simon Le Bon and the Taylors …
6. Her favorite 1980's Solo artist male was George Michael. Play Freedom 90 and ....
7. Jazz was David Sanborn. She loved Saxophone players.
8. Rap solo is Tupac of course. I don't know when the change happened. She hated rap music until Tupac came along.
9. She loved En Vogue , Jodeci , and Boyz2Men.
10. Donny Hathaway's A Song to You , would make her emotional. Me too
11. She was team Marvel.
12 Her Favorite Super Hero Movie was Black Panther
13. Favorite Netflix Marvel show was Daredevil
14. Favorite Group was X-Men
15. Did not like Thor as A CHARACTER
16. Favorite actor not named Keanu Reeves-- tie Al Pacino and Robert Dinero
17. Favorite Musical Movie -West Side Story ... ugh.
18. Favorite 1990's Movie - The Matrix
19. Favorite Movie - The Godfather
20. Favorite Play - Hamilton
21. Drove to Savannah, GA on Valentine's Day weekend 2000 with no Reservations, no plans and no Money. slept in the parking lot of a hotel She wanted to locate Keanu Reeve's in the streets after shooting the movie the Gift. We never saw him. Peanuts creator Charles Schultz died that day
Sunday, July 21, 2019
I am going to lead with something that would become apparent later.... I did not like this movie. Like at all. Even tho I am the host of a show called the Marvel Hacks, DC animation has been a huge part of my life since I had kids. When my kids were younger, they gravitated more to DC than Marvel and because their animation studio was pumping out solid comic book adaptations, it was easy for them to watch and for me to read and compare the movies to the comics.
As they got older, the shift to Marvel began and its pretty much stomped out any DC love they had. The MCU movies > DC Animation and the awfulness of the DC cinematic movies kicked DC out of my house completely. And I missed that because I was enjoying watching and reading DC books for the first time in my life and when they dipped, I kinda forgot about the DC animation movies.
Twitter and social media help when fans get excited about a movie coming out, but I have missed so many of the movies over the last five or so years. I caught the Batman: The Killing Joke and that was pretty terrible, but when I heard they were doing Hush, I got really excited. In the comics, Batman Hush was a 12 issues series by Jim Lee and Jeph Loeb. It told the story of a new villain to Gotham and how he was manipulating Batman rogues into doing his dirty work and mind fuckin' Batman all at the same time. The books had great art, action, dialogue, fight scenes and a surprise ending... several surprise endings that made the book and absolute must read( and I am not a Batman guy). Plus a love story with Batman and Catwoman! This is on part they actually get right!
When I heard the movie was coming out, I went out and read the books again to get myself familiarized with the story again. That was mistake number one. While the movie sticks with the basic principals of the comics, it falls flat in many areas. One, the animation. At this point, DC animation is still giving us a slight better version of their tv animation. One of the reasons Hush the comic is so good is the art by Jim Lee. Now recreating that is not possible, but something closer than Batman the Animated series. Two, the movie takes broad, unnecessary strokes from the comic book. They coulda did an almost panel for panel remake like they did with Batman: The Killing Joke but they skipped over so much... especially the stuff with Bruce's friend, Tommy Elliot, which I will come back to later. Three, the fight scenes come about every 5 minutes like labor pains. Any emotion that the story should carry is wiped away by the BAM, BIFF, WHOP of fight scenes. And even tho they stick closer to the comic than the rest of the movie, it still is overkill; especially the final Boss scene between Batman and Hush. Lastly, and this is me being petty, there was NO reason to stick Damian Wayne in this movie. NONE. I hate the character and this cameo made me hate him even more.
Overall, and I am not sure what the plan is because Hush is really a two part story. I do not want to spoil anything but they really only told the first half and they kinda fumbled the ball with it. Tommy Elliot's role in Hush is vital to the story and they gloss over it pretty quickly. It did not seem they were setting up the second part and the reveal of who Hush actually is and that would be a shame because the true reveal is better than the reveal in this movie.
Batman: Hush shoulda been called Batman: Rush because this felt like a rush to the finish of a classic story. It deserved better and DC needs to do a better job of making sure these classic stories match up with classic animation and story telling. They really missed a chance right here. Read the book and skip this.
Man you would have to know me very well to know how much I enjoy Lifetime movies. Before there was a whole ass movie network, the movies generally premiered on Saturday nights and then ran for large blocks on Sunday afternoon. I really cannot count how many times I have seen women get cheated on, stalked, and roughed up with domestic violence. On top of that, unruly teens always out having sex or getting caught up on the drugs. Its formulatic AF and I love every minute of it. Still do really as I binge the hell out of the movies on Sunday afternoon as I am doing work in the house or finishing a work project.
So when I turned on Netflix the other day and saw the preview trailer for Secret Obsession, my curiosity peaked a bit. I first noticed Brenda Song and then the trailer played all the way out life a Lifetime Movie. Woman in danger, women being stalked, women with amnesia, and obsessed man. This is almost a full Lifetime movie Bingo.
The problem is this is a BAD Lifetime movie. Netflix does such a good job with their original programming so for them to actually be pumping this up like its any good is a tragedy. Brenda Song stars as Jennifer Russell and in the opening scene, she is on the run from a mystery man in the shadows. She's doing her best to escape and every horror movie trope is used from locked doors failing and cars stalling when trying to escape. When she does look to have an opening to get away from the slow walking stalker, she gets run down by a car and sent to the hospital.
This is when the movie really gets bad. Breaking all sorts of hospital protocol, a man who claims to be her husband shows up and is giving access to Jennifer and stays( stalks) her through her recovery but.... Jennifer has amnesia and cannot remember why she was on the run and even if this man, Russell played by Mike Vogel is actually her husband.
Jennifer recovers enough to be released even with the amnesia and given to this man who takes her and moves her out to this remote area with no internet access and she is really just left alone with this kidnapper as she tries to recover her memory and life. Meanwhile, a detective, played by Dennis Haysbert is investigating a missing persons report and the accident as a part of a much larger case that. Plus a new man shows up.... the real Russell Williams and his confrontation with his imposter leads him to being killed.
The rest of the movie is just Jennifer uncovering that this man is a full on psycho who became obsessed with her and her life after a brief encounter previously. The reveal is long and boring and the final escape fight scene and mystery ending are quite a bore.
Look, I don't watch Lifetime Movies for psychological thrillers. I watch it for cheesy acting and dialogue and pretty women who overcome all kids of shit to put shitty men in jail. So you would think since this movie covers all that I would be happy. WRONG. This movie is a bad Lifetime movie with terrible acting, writing, and plot and no matter how much Jennifer recovered, it was not enough to cover the plot holes and general awfulness Secret Obsession served.
So hard pass. Do not watch. Netflix out here charging $18 a month for a movie you could watch for free on Lifetime Movie Network.
Marvel came back to Hall H for a huge presentation after taking last year off to present at D23. MCU fans had been skeptical and confused about what direction MCU was headed in post Endgame. There had been the Eternals and Black Widow movies announced but outside of that, everything was speculation. What about Black Panther 2 and Captain Marvel 2? What about Fantastic Four and X-Men? Well Marvel came out swinging! Lets look at the major announcements and you might want to get your credit card ready to order Disney Plus because you gonna need it!! In no particular order...
The movie comes out in 2020 and takes place in the time between Captain America: Civil War. The often referenced Budapest scene will be addressed so I am sure Hawkeye is in the movie and we have Taskmaster as our villain. For me, I am not that excited about this. One Scarlett Johanssen has been problematic AF and this movie shoulda already been made. Why are we going backwards in the Avengers Saga?
Verdict: I will not be seeing this in the movie theater. I cannot with ScarJo
In my years of reading comics, I have never gotten much traction with the Eternals. Their function and purpose in comics and now in the MCU does nothing for me. The movie has a great cast and I am sure their movie is a set up for bigger things to come in a post-Thanos world. This has an Inhumans feel to it tho.
Verdict: Will probably see it. Too soon to tell.
Thor: Love and Thunder
The Thor MCU movies are probably the most debated in terms of quality of all the movies. Many people like the first one and hate the second one. Ragnarock almost started fights with the folks at Brothascomics. This 4th movie is bringing back Thor and Valkerie and the huge announcement that Natalie Portman is coming back as Jane Foster AND she will be Thor- a straight up storyline from the comics. I am sure this pisses off white fan boys who had found their spirit animal in Fat Thor which makes me delight even more in their pain.
Verdict: Not a huge Portman fan, but a huge fan of Lady Thor comics and if they can bring that energy, this movie will be awesome. Definitely gonna see this in the theater.
Speaking of hotly debated.... Jeremy Renner. Personally, I like the actor, even tho they have never come close to capturing how awesome Hawkeye is in the comics. He is basically Captain America in the comics. Now, on Disney Plus, he gets his own series and it looks like a hand-off to Kate Bishop to be the new Hawkeye and I am all for that. If you did not read the Matt Faction run of Hawkeye, go read it now. Should be fun and interesting and possibly a lead up to the Young Avengers
Verdict: Definitely gonna watch!
An animated series for Disney Plus based on the comics of the same name which deals in What if situations from established stories. It appears all MCU actors are lending their voice talents to this project which give it instant credibility. Hopefully the animation matches up as Marvel is leagues behind DC animation.
Verdict: Definitely Gonna Watch!!
The Falcon and Winter Soldier
I should not even have to tell you this is a definite watch. Black Captain America. Period. I know some people hate on Anthony Mackie but I'm here for him with this. Sebastian Stan in back as Winter Soldier and masked Baron Zemo is coming as well. The chemistry that Sam and Bucky have is great and I have high hopes for this series. Its the one announcement I am most excited about and you know damn well Steve Rogers is gonna show up!
Verdict: Nuff said
Man I love Tom Hiddleston but I have no real use for this series. Loki's fate after Endgame is for sure interesting and I am sure he winds up in the 4th Thor movie somehow. I just don't have a real interest in seeing it. I am sure someone will tell me about it tho.
Verdict: Ima pass until told otherwise
Title aside, this seems to be interesting as we get to explore the relationship between Wanda and Vision. How they gonna put some life back into his caved out husk of a body will be interesting as well. But the biggest news coming out of this show was that actress Teyonh Parris will be playing Monica Ranbeau AKA Photo. That puts us ever so closer to the Ultimates! All we need is Blue Marvel and America Chavez and I am beyond excited about this!!!
Verdict: Bitch yaaasssss!!!!!!
Shang Chi and The Legend of the 10 Rings
My knowledge of Shang Chi could fit in the Monopoly thimble. For real! But I am open to the idea of reading more about him and the actor cast as Shang Chi is Simu Lui, from Kim's Convenience and I like him a lot. Plus we get the real Mandarin and not the bullshit they tried to pass off in Iron Man 3. You have to wonder is this movie a one-off or the set up of a series of movies to a larger event like Phase one!
Verdict: I will probably see it!
Dr Strange and the Multiverse of Madness
I was not a huge fan of the first Dr Strange movie. His incarnations in Thor 3 and the two Avengers movies tho really showed how powerful he is. This movie is also gonna star Scarlett Witch and you gotta think we maybe get a No More Mutants situation but in reverse. Word is this might be a horror movie, too. If that's the case, if you know me, I wont be seeing this movie ever because I don't mess with horror.
Verdict: If not a horror movie, yes. If a horror movie, hell to the no!
Look, Blade started it all and Marvel and the MCU need to give Wesley a big ass check to help pay off his taxes to the IRS. And I know people wanted him to come back and have a role in the MCU now but Wesley approaching 60 and even tho Black don't Crack and he is in great shape, its time to pass the mantle. I was thinking they was gonna do a show on Hulu with Blade's daughter but Marvel said, "bump that shit" and went out and got 2x Academy Award winner
Verdict: Bring it all on!!!!!
So Phase 4 is in full effect even without the Fantastic Four or the X-Men. Marvel goes to Hall H and steals the con again as DC didn't even bother to try. Gonna be a hype next 3 years and I am all for it!!
Going in, let me just say that I am not a huge fan of all the reboots of comics. Its not a continuity thing. Its a, " these books need direction and you hamper creative when they know the book could be done in two years" thing.
Regardless of that, I love the X-Men. I have been here for the reboots and bought several new #1 issues against the wishes of my wife and my wallet. At San Diego Comic Con this weekend, new X-Men savior, Jonathan Hickman unveiled the new slate of books so I am gonna give you my initial impressions with the limited information that we have about each book.
By Gerry Duggan and Mateo Lolli
The team is interesting but the concept of mutants on the high seas searching for other mutants seems kinda far fetched. I mean in a world with cerebero, high tech planes, and the internet, why are mutants being pirates. Kitty is front and center which makes me think she is the leader of the team which I hate. Storm is on the team and not the leader, deferring to Kitty again like she did in X-Men Gold and I think that is BS. And this push of having Emma be a "hero" needs to end. Let her be the villain she is and stop the charade; especially since it appears her relationship with Scott is over. And a pirate book without Nightcrawler? Cmon son?!
By Jonathan Hickman and Lenil Francis Yu
Its a Summer's Family Reunion ya'll…. Its interesting that the mainline X-Men book is the Summer's family and Wolverine. Its an odd group to say the least and it appears this may be space based with Corsair being on the team. Rachel Summers/Prestige is back which I am not a fan of. Jean is back to Marvel Girl and in that old school costume which seems a bit dated. This book probably interest me the least of the bunch of them. Why bring Scott back to then ship him off into space. Plus Scott and Alex on the same team? Basura!
By Tini Howard and Marcus To
I would be so much happier with this is Apocalypse was not standing back there. New Captain Britain..awesome. Mr and Mrs. X back on an X-Team.... perfect. I never liked Jubilee but whatever. But Apocolype…. really? So no more culling the weak? No more being a bad guy? Now he is the muscle on a team of mutants that need a big guy? Kinda weird. I will read it but I definitely don't understand the purpose.
By Benjamin Percy and Joshua Cassara
This book was probably the one I was most excited about because the teams seems the most interesting. Jean Grey makes her second team call but with Domino co-leading. You get your muscle with Colossus and Wolverine makes his second team appearance as well. Black Tom? Kinda an odd choice but this team looks very interesting.
Fallen Angels #1
By Bryan Edward Hill and Syzmon Kudrasnki
I don't got much here..... I see that Psylocke is back and we get rid of Kwannon. But young Cable is here even tho old Cable is on the Summer's Family Reunion team. X-23 is here and its very surprising that she is not on one of the X-team books. Gotta wonder if Honey Badger will also be a part of this. Not feeling this one. Feels very much like a mini-series, not a monthly book.
New Mutants #1
By Jonathan Hickman and Ed Brisson
Historically, I have never been a fan of the New Mutants. Over time, even tho these kids are old as hell and should be the Old Mutants, they have grown on me. Its funny that most of the team was killed by Rosenberg in his Uncanny run which kinda weakens the impact of his run from an emotional and continuity point but whatever. I like this team and adding Chamber gives it more of an edge. Will definitely cop this one.
Overall, I am still a bit skeptical. This is a lot of books and a lot of mutants in a comic book economy that cannot support all these comic books. I have argued for years on our podcast( find it here https://soundcloud.com/brothas-hutchinson) that less books is a better look for the X-Men; much like the Avengers with a set team and rotating heroes in and out as the story fits. Every mutant does not need a team and is waters down the overall product. But Marvel keeps cranking them out.
I see a lot of people are "In Hickman We Trust". I think dude is great too but this is a lot of moving pieces and I hope he can keep it all together. Regardless, I know what will happen if it does not work and I'll be blogging about the next reboot in 3 years.