Showing posts with label comics. Show all posts
Showing posts with label comics. Show all posts

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Marvel mania

Immediately after the rousing success and huge weekend opening of Iron Man, Marvel Comics' first fully self-financed movie, the comic book giant announced the release date for its sequel (30 April 2010), as well as a few other titles including Thor (4 June 2010), The Avengers (July 2011) and most interesting of all, Captain America (6 May 2011).

When I was barely out of my tod years, I was already a Captain America fan. I was too young then to understand the nationalistic inclinations of the character, but I was very much mesmerised by the superhero's cool, colourful costume and indestructible throwing shield. There was also something cool about him battling the Nazis during World War 2, who were led by a memorable villain called The Red Skull (who literally had a red skeleton for a head like Skeletor).

In restrospect, my little infatuation with the Cap seems a little embarrassing. Not just because he's a blatantly patriotic figure of another country, but because the whole concept of Captain America is as corny as the idea of a Sargeant Singapore or Major Malaysia. Today's movie audiences are more matured and cynical, and you can see it in their taste for flawed, complicated heroes (e.g. Iron Man, Spider-man, Blade, The Crow, Batman, etc.) Superman is probably the closest in terms of colour scheme and American ideals, but although Superman Returns' box office draw wasn't too bad, it got mixed reactions from critics and fans. Perhaps some people aren't very receptive to the traditional, wholesome, good-natured superheroes anymore. (My problems with Superman Returns had more to do with the handling of the story than Supes' outdated goody-two-shoes-ness, which I think could still work.)

Thus, an update to the concept seems inevitable. What would they need to change then? Make the character black, as one movie journalist had suggested? Update the costume to a trendier, darker colour like they did in X-men? Or maybe even change his name entirely? The First Avenger, anyone? How about giving him an Uncle Ben-like backstory to brood and sulk about and plot a revenge with?

I say a resounding "no" to all of these. You take away the stuff that makes this character unique - his name, his costume and what he stands for - and make him modern, darker and edgier, you might as well call the movie Blade 4. There is only one era where the Cap would not look entirely out of place, and it's in the early 1940s, on European soil, battling Nazi supermen. Think Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow, or Indiana Jones or the opening sequence of Hellboy. If there's one thing the silver screen lacks today, it's superhero movies set in World War Two.

Of course, in The Avengers movie, Captain America would have to be transported into modern times to head a team of superheroes consisting of him, Iron Man, Thor and others (via WWII-era cryogenics technology; a la Demolition Man). I wouldn't know how the character's going to work then, but that's for the writers to fret about in these coming weeks.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

More Sin City-style fun?

Frank Miller, the comic book auteur who created Sin City, 300 and the ultimate Batman story, The Dark Knight Returns, is adapting Will Eisner's comic series The Spirit, and will also be directing the movie. He said that he'll be using the same bluescreen techniques from Sin City and 300, but judging from the posters it looks like he might be using the same black-and-white aesthetics as well. The movie stars Gabriel Macht as The Spirit, and Samuel L. Jackson as his nemesis, The Octopus. Scarlett Johansson and Eva Mendes play The Spirit's love interests. Movie's due 16 January 2009. More info here.

Friday, February 29, 2008

BMF on Flick Filosopher's site!

Revered internet movie critic MaryAnn Johanson, a.k.a. The Flick Filosopher has posted a link to one of my cartoons on her site! See the post here!

Saturday, November 24, 2007

A videogame that finally makes you cry

I came across this comic strip from a link on's site. See it here first before continuing. Though it could all be exploitatively made up, but even if it is, it's still a stroke of dramatic genius, giving example of how videogames can transcend its role as being merely a brainless button-mashing apparatus, and also how it's not always all about f***ing killfests Halo or Grand Theft Auto. And as games become more social and open-ended in nature, it creates avenues for completely unique, personal and sometimes even heartfelt experiences for each gamer, like the one purportedly experienced by the comic artist.
To those not familiar with the game pictured above, yes, the game does allow you to do all the stuff shown in the comic, so they're not made-up story devices to lure out the eye juices.
Check out Penny Arcade's funny response to this comic here.
See other people's comments here.