The Avengers?

I’m about three days behind on this one, but it bears relevant mention anyway. USA Today on 12/27 had a press piece from Marvel Comics about their upcoming most-recent line-wide revamp, “The Heroic Age,” largely touted as a return to “old fashioned optimistic” superhero stories following the close of the current “Dark Reign” line-wide arc; which involved most of the company’s “Avengers”-related heroes being replaced by rechristened supervillains under the direction of Spider-Man nemesis Norman Osborne. This is, of course, a cousin to DC’s “Brightest Dawn” followup to their current “Darkest Night” crossover event, though both companies are spinning their respective shifts as being in some way inspired by the “Age of Obama.”

Whatever. These “cycles” are how these things go. USA Today article is HERE:

The point of more immediate interest is an official “teaser” image that accompanied the piece, showing nine Marvel characters standing at attention. As the (evidently soon to be no-longer-pissed-at-eachother) “core” Avengers members Captain America, Thor and Iron Man are side-by-side, most are jumping to the conclusion that the teaser represents the new Avengers lineup, though no one has confirmed that. The other six are Hawkeye, Thing, Beast, Black Widow, Spider-Man and Gorilla Man – which casts some doubt on that notion since Thing, Beast and Gorilla Man are currently associated with other Marvel Teams (Beast is even depicted in his X-Men gear.) However, it’s also notable that ALL of these characters have been Avengers members at one time or another.

Of more immediate interest to me: Major comic shakeups made in-advance of a related film production are usually connected in some way (see: Spider-Man wearing black again prior to SM3) and as such what immediately leaps out at me is Clint Barton (presumably) being back in his old-school Hawkeye identity/outfit. It’s been heavily hinted that Hawkeye might be turning up in the planned “Avengers” team-up movie and possibly in one of the still-to-release lead-in films (Iron Man 2, Thor and Captain America) and this would certainly be in-line with setting the stage for that (Black Widow is ALREADY known to be in IM2.)

Also noteworthy: The Captain America pictured seems to be the original Steve Rogers (blue eyes) but wearing a variation on the uniform of fill-in Cap Bucky Barnes (black pants, no mail-armor) which gives a certain amount of weight to the speculation that that’s close to what Cap will be wearing in HIS movie. (FWIW, I like the design okay even if it IS just the standard-issue 2000s revamp cliche of mostly-black witha triangle-shaped suggestion of the original outfit draped over the shoulders.)

Wall Street 2

Gotta say, this “Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps” trailer is about 90% perfect:

I’m speaking, of course, of all the stuff that involves treating Gordon Gekko’s return like that of some iconic movie hero/villain to power, shades of the “Hannibal” trailer, etc. The question mark, naturally, is the focus on Shia LeBeouf – who’s batting zip for 80s revamp movies so far and who’s presence seems to have moved into the “automatic eyeroll” territory in trailers.


Computer fuckups kept me out of posting-ness for a week or so, hopefully no longer.

Just a quick notation for now: J.D. Salinger and Howard Zinn both passed away today (so did Zelda Rubenstein); authors of “Catcher in The Rye” and “A People’s History of The United States” respectively. So, if you know any college students – particularly here on the East Coast where Zinn mainly did his thing – give them a hug if you see them.

Salinger’s passing will ultimately prove the more fascinating, as it may afford the world a glimpse into just what he’s been up to ever since retreating into self-imposed exile.

Cindy McCain "No H8" ad

Hey, look. Some political news NOT related

to my homestate’s momentary brain-fart:

That’s Sen. John McCain’s wife Cindy posing for the pro-gay-marriage “No H8” campaign, which has previously run similar ads featuring the McCains’ daughter Megan.

According to the McCain campaign-proper, the senator – previously known as a regular for of the “values-voter’ crowd prior to his (apparent) turnaround during the 2008 election – “respects disagreements” within his own family, but still claims to be against gay marriage. Then again, so does President Obama. In fact, at this point just about the ONLY high-grade presidential-level player in American politics who OPENLY supports equal-marriage is still… Dick Cheney.

Like it or not, this will continue to be the “difficult” issue for both parties, because they’re both on the defensive. Lots of inside-baseball stuff indicates that a solid majority of Democrats support it but are terrified of saying so, that’s no surprise… but it’s also becoming clear that plenty of Republicans are either for it or “don’t care one way or the other” but feel they have to be “against it” publically in order to appease – for lack of a better word – the Palin-wing of the party. I have a feeling that what the leadership of both parties would like more than anything else would be for the Supreme Court to bang the gavel and say “It’s legal now!” Then they’d still be able to agree or disagree but also tell the Palin-wing “look, it’s kinda done, out of our hands now” etc.

Hey, look! Spider-Man reboot news!

Ah, Sony Pictures… having you and this godforsaken project to beat up on has gotten me over A LOT of personal and professional humps these last few weeks 😉

Anyway, The Hollywood Reporter’s “Heat Vision” blog is reporting on “the details” of the “Spider-Man” reboot, more or less confirming what the web snoops have been saying all along:

As expected: A dramatically lower-budget, no “big names” in the main cast (so look for lots of stunt-casting in the villain seats), a high-school setting beginning with at least three installments with heavy, openly-acknowledged influence from Brian Michael Bendis’ deplorably-overrated “Ultimate Spider-Man” run. In other words, it’s a Buffy/Smallville approach but without the sole saving grace of room-to-grow afforded by television. (How long has it taken “Smallville” to go all the way from complete-shit to kinda-almost-passable, again?) Oh, and Marc Webb IS directing – possible all of the first three – so you may as well get used to how HYSTERICAL the mainstream entertainment press thinks it is that a guy named WEBB is making a Spider-Man movie.

Elsewhere, Chud’s Devin Faraci is intimating additional information, namely that the main overrarching plot thread is a chaotic romantic entanglement involving Peter, Gwen Stacy, Mary Jane and Flash Thompson. Yegh. Why not just relocate the whole thing to coastal Washington State and get it over with?

Elsewhere in geek-world, the Fox Network is developing a (presumably Dr. Who-unrelated) “Torchwood” remake for the U.S. Gee… I wonder what the first thing NOT carried-over will be? 😉

Golden Globes

Yes, I watched the Golden Globes.

Yes, the Golden Globes are an utterly worthless institution.

Yes, Sandra Bullock winning ANYTHING for “Blind Side” is preposterous, but it’s not worth being outraged over because it’s just a Globe and as mentioned before the Globes are worthless – position I will maintain up until if and when I’m nominated for one, at which point they will become a tremendous honor I’ve been dreaming of recieving since I was a small boy.

Yes, once Us/InTouch/etc “catch up” to the whole “and he’s her ex-husband” thing, Kathryn Bigelow is going to be the most-sympathized-with woman in America – primary by women who’ve never seen one of her movies and had no idea what “The Hurt Locker” was before last night.

Yes, James Cameron actually delivered a portion of his acceptance speech in his own made-up space-alien language. I’m still trying to decide whether that’s the most awesomely nerdy thing anyone has ever done at an awards show or just kinda lame. It would not surprise me at all to learn that he speaks Na’vi more fluently than I speak English.

Yes, I’d like to find out how much sound and/or light would be completely shut out if one tried to check Christina Hendricks’ heartbeat. Failing that, I’d like to see the same experiment performed by Elizabeth Banks.

Yes, I’m starting to come-around on the “Avatar is very-possibly going to win Best Picture” train. It’s not in my top-ten, it won’t be my favorite of the nominees… but unless District 9 is also nominated I’m compelled to root for it. “Best Picture” going to an action-epic about blue kitty-people fighting soldiers piloting mecha-suits is a HUGE step forward for getting “genre film” out of the ghetto once and for all.