Thursday, February 26, 2015

The Spider-Verse Saga Has Come To An End

In some ways this is a hard post to write as I am very much conflicted over my feelings about the Spider-Verse saga that recently wrapped up in the Spider-man comics. Spidey is my favorite hero and so I wish for the best from his comics and am thrown off when it just doesn't all come together.

I am going to start with the bad on this so I can finish with a positive note.

Spider-Verse suffered from going no where real fast. The main six part story really was lacking. Each part did little to move the story and often felt like it repeated itself. Most of the real interesting stuff happen in the tie-in comics. The main story just couldn't handle it all. To some level it really felt like trying to get all the various versions of Spider-Man/woman/girl/pig/ape working together was too much to ask and regretfully it showed.

Now there were some good scenes in the main story, but nothing that really stood out. The conclusion itself just happened. There was nothing in it that was as grand as it needed to be. It also ended in a way that did not feel final. There is little doubt that the problems could start up again with nothing having been done to prevent the Inheritors from coming back.

There were also a whole lot of loose ends that did not get dealt with. The fate of so many of the Spider totems was left unresolved. The main one that sticks out to me is the Uncle Ben Spider-man, who really cannot go back to his world. Where does he go now? Is he going to be forgotten? It wouldn't work to bring him to Earth 616 (Main Marvel universe). Maybe he will just wonder the multi-verse now.

There were also many threads introduced in the storyline that felt forgotten and over looked as the battle reached its conclusion. As the amount of Spider totems grew it seemed the use of each one got less important. Ideas that were hinted at early on just had no where to go with the overwhelming cast. What was to me a very obviously important character called the Master Weaver, who I had no doubt was a pinnacle character that was going to have one impressive back story given to us when his secrets were revealed, ended up with a truly weak, uninspired fate. There was so much they could have done there that they didn't.

So now for the good.

The side stories were where all the real stuff seemed to happen. You got small groups of the characters working together and being able to actually have real stories. This is what saved Spider-Verse from being a full disappointment.

The side stories were also where they did most of the work of living up to the promise of 'every Spider-man ever'. They found some great ways to make sure they at least included references to all of them. Even when they could not use the likenesses, they still made comments about one of them looking like that actor from Seabiscuit and another that would not stop singing show-tunes. So there was a lot of fun little pokes at all the forms Spider-man has taken over the decades that I enjoyed.

In the aftermath we have two new comic titles that are directly out of the story line. Both of them are female lead titles. Silk and Spider-Gwen have a huge following with the series just being announced. There is a lot of potential there for some strong story telling.

And now with Spider-Verse over with, the regular series can fix itself and get back on track. Unless the big Marvel event for this year, Secret Wars, interferes. That is a huge possibility. We do know that Secret Wars is going to introduce a reality where Peter Parker is stilled married to Mary Jane and they have a daughter (Most likely named May). Now this is an alternate continuity that has been shown before, but some of the hints given about Secret Wars suggest that some of these alternate realities will end up resetting various continuities of the main Marvel titles. Not sure how I feel about that idea.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

I'm Not A Power Ranger Fan, But This Was Awesome And NSFW

So a group of Hollywood Power Ranger fans went and made a really dark short Power Ranger fan film. And this is some dark, dark stuff.

I remember being very unimpressed when Power Ranger first came out and thinking it would be so much better if it went dark and ah so intensity to it. So here we are twenty years later with someone doing just that for fun and it is undeniably better than the legitimate show.

I would watch an actual series based off of this idea. In less than 15 minutes it has more suspense, drama and twist and turns as well as actual characters and character development. All of those are thing fully lacking from the actual show.

Now I know one of the main arguments for Power Ranger is that the show is for kids. Now the short it self is clearly for adults, kid shows do not need to be that simple, that lacking of character and plot.

I also love to see movie makers go and make these kind of well made pieces that they put out there for free, just because they had something they wanted to make and get out there. We are at a point where fan films can have incredible production values and often be of a higher quality than much of the legitimate junk coming out of Hollywood.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

The Rebooting of the Star Wars Expanded Universe

For those of you who do not keep up with such things, the Star Wars expanded universe has returned to Marvel Comics after over twenty-five years. There is logic to this, as both Marvel and Star Wars are now extensions of Disney.

Soon after Disney took over Lucasfilm they went and announced that basically all the Expended Universe (EU) that had been put out there (Nearly three decades of comics, novels, video games and more) is non-canon. That means that all the good and bad that had come out of the EU is meaningless as far as Disney is concerned.  All that matters is the six movies and two Lucasfilm cartoon shows, Clone Wars and Rebels.

With that being done everything was in place to start it all up again with a 100% fresh start.

Last month we got Star Wars issue 1 from Marvel comics. It sold over a million copies. Issue two sold out. Today Issue one of the first spin off series, Darth Vader, came out and is in high demand. Originally Darth Vader was to be a limited series, yet due to the high demand it had already been switched over to an on going series before the first issue came out.

Since these comics are being produced by the company that owns the rights, it would seem that these are to be canon now. I am unable to say if this will be good or not. There is potential there and it should be interesting to see where they go with these new EU storylines.

There was a lot of really good concepts put out there in the past EU that will from here on out be fully ignored. And it is going to feel weird when the new EU covers areas that the old EU already dealt with and we are given a fully new continuity on it all.

So the new Star Wars EU is off to big start. All we can do now is wait and see where it takes us.