Posts Tagged ‘Marvel’

**Frequent collaborator Brian C. Baer used his influence as a He-Man scholar to score this interview with Jérémie Damoiseau, the world’s foremost expert on all things Dolph Lundgren. Here, Brian gives some insight on Lundgren’s turn as The Punisher and discusses Jérémie’s new book. Enjoy!**
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This television season saw some great strides in comics on TV, but also a bit of stumbling. New series, for the most part, premiered strong while many of the returning shows seemed to have a bit of trouble maintaining their footing. Without going into it too much, here’s my ranking for this year’s comic book television shows: (more…)

grTo a lot of people, this movie is probably the definition of “superfluous sequel”. It sure seems like very few people wanted to see it, or even noticed when it was released. Hell, less than a year after it came out, I was on a radio show discussing comic book movies and the host had never even heard of it. That said, I think it’s actually a surprisingly decent film. The Neveldine/Taylor brand of kinetic action works well for a character like Ghost Rider. It features surprisingly strong performances from the principal actors and a tone that is much more in-line with how a character like this should be portrayed. In fact, it seems like the only major failing of the film is that it wasn’t pushed further into weird Neveldine/Taylor territory (which is a struggle that is well documented in the film’s “making of” feature). Regardless, it’s miles above the original film.
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punI have gone on record, time and again, defending this film. I feel it is the most true representation of The Punisher that we’ve ever had in expanded media. And, when it comes to film, this is likely the as close to the comic as we’re ever going to get. It wisely accepts his origin as read and crafts a narrative around his obsession with punishing evil-doers. Ray Stevenson’s stoicism as Frank Castle is dead-on and is a nice counter-balance to the rambunctious ridiculousness that is Dominic West’s Jigsaw. While I find that each adaptation of the character has some merit, this is the one that I consistently go to when I need a real Punisher fix. Director Lexi Alexander also ensured that the film retained the palette and many characters from the comic. In the past, Baer has been less complimentary of the film, but I think some of my enthusiasm rubbed off on him during this recording.

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As another year draws to a close, we here at Comic Book Media once again recount the best and worst of comic adaptations in film and television. This year, I am joined by Alasdair Stuart and Brian Baer. Big thanks to both of them for indulging me in this (truly, very important) yearly tradition. Alasdair is new to writing for the site, so please give him a big welcome! With that, we’ll get right into the categories. Enjoy!
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Much has been made about the failure and ineptitude of the recent Fantastic Four adaptation. From the public squabbling between the director and studio to the seeming lack of promotion, it sure sounded like the cards were stacked against it from the very beginning. After hearing about its disastrous opening weekend and universally negative reviews, I almost started to believe that there was no way it could be that bad. I mean, even Catwoman was fun to laugh at, right? Then I sat down in the theatre, the movie started and all hope vanished.

Coming soon: FantFourStic

Coming soon: FantFourStic

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**Once, a loooong time ago, the Marvel brand was not the cinematic behemoth that it is now. Yes, youngsters, there was a time before X-Men, Iron Man and Blade. Novelist Brian Baer took a 90-minute look into that dark time recently and came back with this dispatch of what he witnessed.**

The 90’s was a weird period for Marvel. Between the chromium covers and bankruptcies, the company had found success in animated series, namely with X-Men and Spider-Man. They attempted to spin that momentum into live-action properties in 1996 with a made-for-TV movie/pilot for a Generation X TV series. That show wasn’t picked up, but in 1998, they gave it another try with an adaptation of their long-running super-spy, Nick Fury: Agent of SHIELD.

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Blade is the first new CommentaryCasts to be posted in this new format. Starring Wesley Snipes, this 1998 film is the first to kick-off the modern “Golden Age” of comic book films. That’s especially interesting since the studio that released it, New Line, didn’t promote it as such. It’s not too odd considering the cinematic pedigree of movies based on comics at the time (and let’s not forget that this was only a year after the Great Bat-Implosion…also called Batman and Robin). But it’s cool to see the cinematic juggernaut that comic book movies (and Marvel especially) have become, with much thanks going to the strong foundation that Blade laid. Brian and I discovered that even with dated cgi, it’s still an incredibly entertaining action flick. (more…)

The 2014/15 television season has become well known as the season of the comic book television series. While we used to be content with the occasional Smallville or Birds of Prey (ok, no one was content with Birds of Prey), it’s now possible to watch comic book programming 5 nights a week (or more thanks to DVR). While most of these shows have been ratings successes, I’ve been looking at them on my own scale of general artistry and adaptation. To me, not all of them have been stellar, but it’s certainly been interesting to watch them grow, regardless.

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Guest Writer Extraordinaire Brian Baer provided this look at a Marvel character who has had a whopping zeroo appearances in expanded media. Where’s the Kung Fu love, Marvel?

Writing about Marvel, especially characters who haven’t been adapted yet, isn’t easy. Pre-Iron Man, movies and other media based on Marvel’s characters were as hit-or-miss as DC’s. Since then it’s become a different story. Not only are audiences being treated to high quality films, the Cinematic Universe’s scope is almost too comprehensive to allow Monday Morning Quarterbacking. But this is the internet, after all. So, I’ll give it a shot.
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