Nov 22 2011

Superheroes in brown

Superheroes and superheroines can wear a lot of colors: red, blue, yellow, and to a lesser extent, green. Sometimes black* or white or silver or gold.

Villains corner the market on most of the black, as well as green, orange, and purple. Funny that heroes use largely primary colors, while villains largely use secondary. But there are some colors you never see superheroes in: gray, pink, brown, tan, aqua. And if they do have these second-rate colors, they probably have second-rate powers and no-one’s ever heard of them.

There are exceptions, of course; Green Lantern is certainly a second-rater (or a mid-carder, for you wrasslin’ fans), and he’s got all kinds of green, and thanks to the movie this year, non-nerds have now heard of him.

But back to the issue: superheroes, as a rule, don’t wear gray or brown or aqua. But there is one notable exception. Not only does he wear brown, he actually does it well. And he’s huge.

True, he’s largely depicted now in black, yellow, and sometimes blue. But for a large part of his existence, this was Wolverine’s normal outfit. How does he get away with it? I guess by simply being such an awesome character. Pretty much all of Marvel’s heroes have flaws, but Logan really has problems–yet he is so real and so likable.

And when you’re the best you are at what you do, you can wear brown as a superhero.


*No, I’m not going to dignify any of those idiotic ‘black’s not a color’ arguments you might have.

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Sep 15 2009

Onomatopoeias and ulterior motives

Someone pointed out to me that I hadn’t disclosed the entire story in my previous post.

The truth is, my friend’s real name isn’t Logan; we just call him that because he looks like Wolverine. To that end, he is the recipient of lots of Weapon X-related teasing. Like the day I looked at his hand and asked him, “Does it hurt?” He of course blew his line (“Every time.”).

So when I asked him his favorite onomatopoeia, it wasn’t an interrogative question: it was a setup. No matter what he answered, my reply was pre-planned:

“I would have thought it was snikt!”

He didn’t really find it that humorous. But I guess I wouldn’t either if I had an adamantium-encased skeleton.

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Aug 7 2009

Review: G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra

Fifteen minutes into the midnight showing of G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra the film burned and broke.

That was my favorite part of the movie.

No, I’m not kidding.

If I hadn’t been there with my children and students I would have walked out shortly after they got it back up and running.

I can say without exaggeration that I hated every minute of this movie.

To call it a steaming pile of poo would be to besmirch the good name of steaming piles of poo.

I know I’ve given some movies some bad reviews on this site. Some angry, scathing reviews. All of those movies were better than this. Even The Happening. Even Jumper. Even Paul Blart: Mall Cop.

My friend Clavis was there, and he said that he has been bored enough to rent several of  the cheezy movies at Redbox, and this was worse than all of them.

I went into this movie with low expectations. After all, it’s directed by Stephen Sommers, the guy who gave us Van Helsing back in 2004. I don’t think it’s humanly possible to set expectations low enough.

There are words to describe exactly how I feel about this movie. Those words are called profanity. Speaking of profanity, G.I. Joe has lots of it, so you might not wanna take your kids. I haven’t yet gotten an up-close look at the Hasbro toys based on the movie, but hopefully for the sake of accuracy they have one with a voice chip that takes God’s name in vain.

There are also several graphic scenes that aren’t suitable for children, including one guy who gets giant needles stabbed in his neck, has a seizure, and gets his face eaten off by nanobots, which resemble a flesh-eating green mist.

That’s it for the spoiler-free portion of the review. Now that I have given you how I felt, the following details why:

Duke and Ripcord are a couple of Army guys. They get thrown into G.I. Joe, a secret classified elite fighting force, a group so big on secrecy they bring these two noobs to their secret base.

It’s a good thing, too. Apparently this ultra-elite fighting force consists of people who, unlike Wolverine, aren’t the best they are at what they do. Duke and Ripcord are pretty much better than this entire team, with the exception of Snake Eyes.

That’s OK though–shortly after joining the team the two noobs get special effects accelerator suits that make them almost as good as Snake Eyes. They don’t need special suits to be smarter than alleged smart-girl heroine Scarlett.

For you needless flashback fans out there, this is your Holy Grail.

If you aren’t tired of CGI special effects yet, then maybe this movie will cure that for you. This movie has so many explosions and fireballs it makes the complete Michael Bay anthology tepid and quaint.

Destro and his team use holographs to communicate to each other. Of course the point of a hologram is to be able to communicate with another human, and vice versa. In quite possibly the stupidest point in the movie, three holograms ride on a submarine together with no other humans in the craft. And no, I am not making this up or even exaggerating one quanta.

Also, ice sinks in water. Make a note of it.

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May 13 2009

The best there is at what I do, but what I do isn’t very nice

X-Men Origins: Wolverine isn’t really that great of a movie. It doesn’t stink like X-Men 3, but it doesn’t rock like X-Men 1 & 2.

The movie has a number of completely superfluous characters who, if you removed them from the movie, wouldn’t change the plot one bit, Gambit and The Blob being the most notable. The movie has a lot of profanity, I guess in an attempt to make it gritty, but it’s still just a mediocre movie. The big fight scene in the middle of the movie is virtually bulging with some of the lamest movie cliches ever, and some simply ridiculous things like riding a Harley through a dense forest. In terms of SFX, there are several scenes that are so obvious they were filmed against a bluescreen and had digital backgrounds inserted that it was distracting.

I don’t mean to imply that the movie was completely terrible, but I think a good editor could make a pretty kick-butt 45 minute movie out of it.

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