Welcome to the First Episode of the all-new MightyVille Chatcast! With each episode, we'll tackle a different subject related to the comic book and pop culture industry, and hopefully bring you some new insight along the way.
Today, MightyVille's Sam Moyerman and Joe Kach took a look at all the trailers for this year's swath of comic book films and then got together to discuss all the goods, the bads, and, yes, the uglies. Take it away, Gentlemen...
Sam Moyerman: I must've only caught the second one. Which I liked, as it was mostly action. I'll be more upset about the amount of villains when I have to watch them for more than 60 seconds.
Joe: I only caught the second also. I had to watch the first online. How do you feel about that ... three villains in Movie #2?
Sam: And going well out of their way to tease even more for the franchise. It's too many. Has there ever been a successful attempt at three movie villains?
Joe: It's definitely my biggest concern...
Sam: Unless they are somehow staggered to not overlap. Say, Rhino is in a secondary plotline.
Joe: I was hoping Rhino would be a throwaway villain for the opening scene, a lot like they do in the James Bond films (which I don't understand why they don't do more of in these movies). But that doesn't seem to be the case.
Sam: I think it could work then. It would be a lot to get Paul Giammatti and only use him for a small amount. Like the Scarecrow cameo in the second and third Batman movies.
Joe: Yeah ... I wonder if producers feel that a villain needs to be fully explained when put into a movie. But, yes, going back to what you said, the action looks pretty boss. And, I may be in the minority, but I enjoyed Amazing Spider-Man more than any of Sam Raimi's Spider-Films, the action being a big reason for that. And Spidey's humor, which was sorely lacking in the original trilogy.
Sam: I preferred the first two Raimi movies (won't accept the third), but I can see what you are saying. I did think Raimi's Peter Parker was more childlike with humor. He's got more of a wise-ass to him now. My favorite part of the Raimi ones, though, was that you could tell his Peter really enjoyed being Spider-Man. I didn't get that in the new ones.
Joe: Yeah, for the most part. It seems like they are leaning more towards that in the second. Did you see the footage here: www.enemiesunite.com? It was a hidden URL in the Super Bowl spots...
Sam: OK, yeah, that was cool. Curious to use that for "Villains Unite" since it really only focuses on one of them.
Joe: Did you notice anything about Gwen Stacy in the trailer?
Sam: She wasn't in it as much. She was working at Oscorp still.
Joe: Right, but there's that iconic bit where she's falling and Spidey has to save her. Shows her hanging from the webbing, i.e., no neck snap.
Sam: Well, she's alive in the Ultimate Marvel universe still. I think, she was at my most recent check...
Joe: But, then there's that shot of a mask-less Peter crying over a body...
Sam: So you think she dies another way? It might be a good idea, he saves a lot of people with webbing. The neck snap, as iconic an image it is, might not work here.
Joe: Yep, that's what I think: Gwen dies, but falling from webbing is a fake out.
Sam: I wouldn't be opposed to just letting her live either. They cut Mary Jane Watson from the movie, so why not run with this? I'm open to her staying alive. Why not make it a love ... square?
Joe: I'm good with that. Adds some extra dynamic. Okay ... moving on to Captain America 2: The Winter Soldier. Woo Hoo! This looks like the movie of 2014 to me.
Sam: I agree. At first I had reservations that they were using the Winter Soldier storyline too soon. But then I figured, "what would you save it for?"
Joe: That was my first thought too. "Kinda fast to get to a plotline from 2005". But, that is one of the best Cap stories of all time and it looks like they are blending in elements of the classic "Man Without A Country" story to tie it all together. Would be awesome if we got a Nomad at the end of it, but I am not holding my breath...
Sam: Maybe his ending getting shot in the car. That was how Ed Brubaker killed him off, right?
Joe: Yeah, shot in the back and unceremoniously dumped into a trunk. So, thoughts on Winter Soldier himself? Will viewers give enough of a shit about Bucky to care that he is a major villain now?
Sam: I think so. I think they can do it right, even if it doesn't have a 30 year buildup. It doesn't need it. They've kept it a decent enough mystery, too. This was the first trailer where they mentioned him in the audio. They've only ever shown him so far.
Joe: Right. I feel that was a good move, builds up his mystery before you even go into the movie.
Sam: I wish they would have the balls to pull out the Cosmic Cube (Tesseract) and use it since it was in the comics.
Joe: I had that same thought! I will say that I was watching the Super Bowl with a lady who mentioned she was intrigued by the whole "Bucky goes bad" aspect of Cap 2 and she has never read a Cap comic in her life.
Sam: How did the lady know it was Bucky?
Joe: I have no idea! She does work for Google ... maybe got wind of it through that.
Sam: They haven't hidden him on the cast list and a simple google search will give it away. But I've only seen his face for an extended time in one of the trailers. Are they also going to play up Natasha's history with him? Play up a love triangle (since it looks like they're playing up Cap with her, like the animated movie)?
Joe: There was that one bit of Cap in a "wife-beater" talking to Natasha sitting on his bed, so I assume we're going further than the love triangle. She's with Bucky still in the comics, yeah?
Sam: I thought so. It's been awhile since I've kept up with Bucky. And since Sharon Carter is in the movie, does she come back in the comics?
Joe: Sharon is in it, but not in a flashback?
Sam: No, that was Peggy Carter in flashbacks. The blonde he walks past and looks at was presumably Sharon Carter.
Joe: Oh! I get those two mixed up all the time ... such a bizarre love triangle. But, that was Natasha on his bed, yes?
Sam: Yes, Natasha on the bed.
Joe: How do you feel about the inclusion of Falcon? Cool or dilutes things to much?
Sam: If it were someone else I'd care. But I like Falcon. Working him in as a S.H.I.E.L.D. guy makes it work, too.
Joe: He's a great fit to buddy up with Cap, and makes me wish they just went with him over Black Widow and Nick Fury ... but Widow and Fury are integral to the Winter Soldier story.
Sam: The good news with those two though is they're already established.
Joe: Good Point
Sam: So, you don't have to do too much background. Their motivations are simple enough, too. And I think Falcon can fall in with that since they are all soldiers.
Joe: So yeah, in regards to Cap, I don't think having too many characters in there messes things up. As long as they tie them in to S.H.I.E.L.D. Speaking of, Robert Redford as Alexander Pierce?
Sam: Redford as anyone?
Joe: Ha, my thoughts exactly. Pierce is enough of a throwaway character that it's like "who cares?"
Sam: And now they found a way to give him gravitas.
Joe: And the addition of Redford to the cast ... I feel like people will take it more seriously.
Sam: They will. His inclusion makes this the first Marvel Studios movie my mother will suggest to my father to go see.
Joe: Word! Also, best line in the Cap trailer, by the way, is "If they're shooting at us, they're bad guys!" Who do you think is on the death bed that Black Widow is standing over in tears? Before she lifts the sheet? Nomad? A fake out?
Sam: I'd think so.
Joe: Me too. Okay, so, which will be the Marvel film of the year? Cap, Spidey, X-Men: Days of Future Past, or Guardians of the Galaxy?
Sam: As of right now Cap is clearly the one. That Quicksilver image knocks X-Men down a bit, but as more footage comes out, it might overtake it. I don't want to be, but I am terrified of Guardians. [Editor's Note: As of this Chatcast, the Guardians of the Galaxy trailer had not yet been released.]
Joe: Yeah, getting the "too much" feel from X-Men, and that is a valid Guardians concern. Gonna be a "wait and see" on that.
Sam: Guardians has a real "How did we not see failure with this group?" kind of feel. The tie-in at the end of Thor 2 was the first thing that gave me confidence.
Joe: But, I mean, Rocket Raccoon, that is bound to be awesome, no?
Sam: Bradley Cooper. They took People's Sexiest Man and made him a cartoon raccoon.
Joe: Ha! Another Oscar nomination, to be sure!
Sam: I love the character though. Done right, he could be a lot of fun. Done wrong and... ooof.
Joe: Two good things right off the bat ... that was one! The second is NO Shia!
Sam: I'll be honest, I'm gonna miss him.
Joe: Oh? You a Shia fan? Plagiarism and all?
Sam: Not in general, but I thought he worked in those movies. But part of that was his youthfulness, and he doesn't have that anymore.
Joe: Fair point ... that was my defense of him in the films initially. He screamed like a girl very well!
Sam: I feel like part of the reason Transformers were always cool was because they interacted with children. And that's when I watched them. Now, "our" part is to identify with the father (in this case Marky Mark Wahlberg).
Joe: You know, you bring up a good point ... you are 100% correct about the kids thing. But, that has been my biggest annoyance with the franchise, both on television and in film: Why do we need to relate to anyone? Why can't we just have a movie about robots beating on each other without the kids getting thrown in? I think, over-all and to date, Beast Wars has been my favorite incarnation of the property due to the lack of human interference. My ideal Transformers movie would actually be set on Cybertron. Imagine something like Lord of the Rings, but with warring factions of robots that turn into things.
Sam: The only thing then is "why do they turn into things?"
Joe: That's a slippery slope, Sam. "Why are they metallic robots?"
Sam: Because they are awesome.
Joe: So that would be my answer to why they turn into things: because they are awesome.
Sam: I think you can do a Cybertron film in this movie universe, though.
Joe: Yeah, maybe Transformers 6 can be set on Cybertron. Call it Transformers 6: Civil War.
Sam: I think an animated prequel movie could be quite fun. As long as they didn't "make it for kids". That one I'd want to allow a little more mature.
Joe: That would be perfect. They could use the same style as the current Transformers: Prime show, that would be a great fit. That would be pretty sick, a straight-to-DVD animated film about the rise of Optimus Prime and Megatron and the Fall of Cybertron. Or, fuck it, just make a film based on those games.
Sam: Those games are awesome.
Joe: DC Entertainment is doing that with the Arkham video game series. So, I am looking forward to TF4, but I actually have no clue which 'bots are being featured or where they are going with the story, and I am a pretty huge Transformers fan ... Transfan?
Sam: I know Optimus Prime and Grimlock. And, I guess Swoop ... if that was Swoop with two heads. They really only needed to show us the Dinobots though. We've seen everything else really - cars, planes, even connecting ones.
Joe: My understanding is that he is Swoop, yes. And the green 'bot with the machine guns is Crosshairs, which makes sense, too. I was hoping fro Springer, because Springer is bad-ass. But, anyone named Crosshairs should be a bad-ass, too.
Sam: A Triplechanger would be cool ... I use the line "I got better things to do tonight than die" all the time.
Joe: HA! Best. Line. Ever. Theoretically, all the film Transformers could be Triplechangers. They just scan whatever is closest and turn into it.
Sam: Good point.
Joe: Crosshiars was a Targetmaster ... I wonder if we'll see any of that stuff: transforming weapons.
Sam: I guess if there's no stigma against making them a weapon anymore, then they could do them.
Joe: That one 'bot in the beginning of the trailer shot bullets from his FACE: Ultimate Targetmaster!
Sam: Again, why does he shoot bullets from his face? Because it's cool!
Joe: I am okay with that being the reason for anything in comics or films: "Because it's cool." "Why did you like Man of Steel?" Because it's cool!
Sam: One could say that's mostly how Zack Snyder and Michael Bay make movies, too.
Joe: Which leads nicely to the next topic: Superman vs. Batman! Some interesting news coming out of that camp the last few weeks. Before we touch on the big ones, how do you feel about the 10-month delay?
Sam: I'm good with it. I thought the first release date was very aggressive.
Joe: Agreed. When I first sniffed that they were announcing Superman vs Batman at San Diego Comic-Con, my response to the image I saw was "Nice Photoshop". Less than 24 hours later, I took my foot out of my mouth. But the reason why I thought that was I felt like they weren't giving Superman enough time to breathe. I still feel that way. I would have liked a Man of Steel 2 before Superman vs Batman.
Sam: Well, the first one was 2.5 hours long. He's breathed enough.
Joe: Maybe ... a lot of it still felt rushed...
Sam: And the Winter Soldier argument holds here. Why wait?
Joe: Right, I guess that's neither here nor there. I just have more vested in Kal El than Bucky, I guess
Sam: I can see that.
Joe: So, my thoughts are: While I was really excited to see the film, and am a major proponent of Ben Affleck as Batman, I think a delay can only make the film better.
Sam: I can agree with that.
Joe: My concern is they are going to make it a Justice League film rather than Superman vs Batman ... but still call it Superman vs Batman. We know Wonder Woman is in it, played by Gal Gadot, which, I have no strong feelings about either way.
Sam: They're likening her part as akin to Black Widow in Iron Man 2. Around enough to establish.
Joe: And there's a rumor about Aquaman...
Sam: Aquaman would be stretching it. As would Flash, or Green Arrow, or Green Lantern, etc. It has enough as is.
Joe: Another rumor I heard was Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson appearing as John Stewart. I am more concerned about Stewart actually being in the film than I am who's playing him!
Sam: I heard that too. I also heard him as Lobo. Introduce Stewart maybe a side role as a military man.
Joe: That could work, but would The Rock do that?
Sam: Hell no!
Joe: Alright, so moving away from rumors: Jesse Eisenberg as Lex Luthor and Jeremy Irons as Alfred Pennyworth: Go!
Sam: I really like Eisenberg. I always like Luthor when he's a contemporary (in age) of Supes.
Joe: Me too, a la the Golden Age ... and Smallville in some ways...
Sam: Exactly like those 2 examples. And Eisenberg already played a smarmy genius. Add a little more charm and charisma to that character and he nails it. I'll be honest, I'm much more worried about Irons as Alfred. Mostly because it means we might get more Bruce Wayne in this one instead of Batman. That was why I was more receptive to the Nightwing rumors. It means more of Batman.
Joe: I agree about Eisenberg. At first I thought, "Really??" But as I pondered it, I started to think he was a pretty brilliant choice. Like you mentioned, The Social Network, that was a young Lex Luthor. If he can go to more of an extroverted arrogance rather than an introverted arrogance, he could really pull it off.
Sam: Jeremy Irons plays creepy real well, but I don't know about "proper British butler".
Joe: As for Irons, your concerns are warranted. But, I am hoping they take a cue from the Batman: Earth One graphic novel and the Beware The Batman cartoon (R.I.P.) and make Alfred more of a bad-ass aid to Batman, rather than a farther figure to Bruce, which I think Irons can do if given the chance.
Sam: It's the only chance to make it work.
Joe: Michael Gough (Tim Burton's Alfred) or Michael Caine ... I don't think could have played Alfred in that way ... Alright, last topic: Ant Man casting has been announced: Paul Rudd is Scott Lang and freaking Michael Douglas will play his adversary, Hank Pym... Go:
Sam: The word that keeps me baffled is "adversary"... Pym ... a bad guy?
Joe: That's how it was presented by Variety.
Sam: Neither of these guys was always the truest of heroes, so I wonder if Rudd isn't necessarily a good guy, either.
Joe: But just because Douglas is the antagonist, doesn't mean he's a bad guy necessarily. If you look at the comic books, Lang stole the Ant Man gear from Pym to save his daughter. Mess with that a bit, and you've got the "lovable" thief being put in a position he does not want to be in, now pitting him against a former hero who is looking to get his stuff back. So, that sets Pym as the antagonist, trying to get his stuff back, and Lang as the protagonist, doing wrong in order to do right. I can see that working.
Sam: I think a more important question then is, "Who is the actual bad guy?"
Joe: The guy from Robert Kirkman's Irredeemable Ant Man series, Eric O'Grady? Ha ha ... I have no idea ... Ultron would work and fit in nicely with things, but I doubt that's where they're going. They cast someone as Janet Van Dyne's father, I'm guessing he could be the villain.
Sam: Did they really? That is interesting.
Joe: Though, that implies Wasp is with Lang, not Pym.
Sam: I hope Douglas still gets to punch her, though...
Joe: Oh geez ... I guess that would fit in well with him being a villain. You know, according to Jim Shooter, that scene was drawn incorrectly, Hank was not meant to be hitting her. Doesn't matter now, Jim, doesn't matter now. I am hoping to see some "flashbacks" with Michael Douglas in full Ant Man gear being a "groovy" hero in the 60s.
Sam: That could be a lot of fun, I think [director] Edgar Wright wouldn't make the movie without those.
Joe: And with his CGI skills, that should be fairly easy to do. Alright, Sam, I think that's good for today. Next time, we'll actually talk about comics!
Sam: Sounds like a plan, man!
Thanks guys! Okay readers, what are your thoughts on this summer's crop of genre films? Agree with the Chatcasters assessments? Let us know!
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