Showing posts with label The Avengers. Show all posts
Showing posts with label The Avengers. Show all posts

Friday, June 15, 2007

The Earth's Mightiest Heroes Coming to Big Screen

When one imagines the reaction of a comic book fan to the news that The Avengers (totally different than The Avengers) were finally coming to the Big Screen, one imagines images of geeky childhood delight. Well, according to Borys Kit of the Hollywood Reporter, the first part of that equation has arrived. The Avengers will be coming to the big screen, with a screenplay by Zak Penn.

But the second par of that imagining, isn't happening on my part. Instead, I worry. I worry an unreasonable amount. I am getting hives from worry. I am very precious about my dear Avengers. You see, they are my favorite superhero team. I own every issue of their comics, no small feat, and have stuck with them through thick and thin. Sure, I don't think that The Avengers have ever been as entertaining as the Giffen/Maguire/Dematteis era of The Justice League, but their lows haven't been as low and their "average" level of writing has kept me entertained for over thirty years. So, in my preciousness I am worried that any Avengers movie will lack the heart of what I enjoy about the franchise.

But my preciousness is really the least of my worries. I am more concerned with the fact that The Avengers are a TEAM, a very large team, as this picture demonstrates.

That picture was drawn in the 90s. Since then the list of heroes who have been a part of The Avengers has only grown. No, I don't expect any movie about The Avengers to try to include every Avenger, but I do expect the movie to be a team movie and that means team movie problems.

What team movie problems?

Well, there's the whole, "how do you introduce the team members to an audience who might not know them" problem. This problem was key in the weaknesses of the Fantastic Four film. Too much time covering the back story and you end up with no narrative.

Then there's the "too many heroes" problem. What heroes do you choose and how many? How many are too many? Which heroes get personal narratives? Do any? Is this just a "group" story, in which case it isn't very Marvelesque, or does it have the requisite Marvel soap opera qualities?

Finally, there's the "satisfying the fanboy" problem. How obscure do you get with the members of the team? Do you do the "original Avengers," Iron Man, Hulk, Ant-Man, and Thor (with Captain America coming quickly, but the Hulk leaving as rapidly)? Do you go with the "classic Avengers," Iron Man, Ant-Man (in one of his multiple forms), Vision, Captain America, Thor, Scarlet Witch, Hawkeye, and Wasp? Is that even really the "classic Avengers?" What about Black Panther and Beast? They both rule and spent a lot of time hanging out with the team.

I don't want to think about it. I'll just think about the animated movies they did recently. They were okay. They lacked the Marvel essence, but they were a good team adventure.

I don't even want to think of who the villain might be in an Avengers movie.

Zak, I don't envy you the attempt.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

AMC to Bring New Version of The Prisoner to the Black Box

While the movie catalogue of American Movie Classics has shrunk since the arrival of Turner Classic Movies, the catalogue of quality television shows on the channel has increased. Last year, I was obsessed with watching each new episode of Hustle. The show lifted narratives from some of my favorite grifter based movies, everything from "The Sting" to the highly under-rated "Traveller" served as inspiration for the series. As I watched each new episode, I felt the joy I felt when I first read Walter Gibson's (the creator of The Shadow) The Bunco Book with its tales of cons and conmen.

Now AMC is partnering with Granada and Sky One to bring to our mind-numbing black boxes a remake of the classic television series The Prisoner. Those who have read this blog for some time know that I used to go by the nom d'cyber Number One, a direct reference to this television show. For those who thought it was a Star Trek reference, let me quote Robert in the wonderful Gen-X film Free Enterprise "I would never live in the 24th century! I fucking HATE "The Next Generation". Only classic!" Needless to say, I am very jazzed about the possibility of a new Prisoner series.

But before some member of Six of One wanders into this website wondering at my Prisoner street cred, let me just set the record straight. I like the show, I don't obsess about it like I do about Avengers comic books (the one with Thor). In fact, I am one of those controversial and strange animals that thinks of The Prisoner as a sequel to Danger Man (aka Secret Agent) and was introduced to both The Prisoner and Danger Man by the Danger Mouse cartoon (though it also borrowed liberally from Holmes and 007).

As a bonus, AMC will run the original series at the same time they debut the new one.