“One Batch, Two Batch” My Thoughts on Daredevil

*Spoiler Warning! I’m not going to reveal huge plot points but, naturally, I will be talking about certain different characters and their story-arcs so proceed with a little caution*

 

If anyone has paid any attention to my ramblings over the last year then they should know that I absolutely love Daredevil. It’s weird to me because initially it had a lot going against it, such as:

  • It was a previously failed property being given a second chance, which is something that a lot of people would be hesitant about.
  • It’s entering a crowded market of more crime dramas and more superhero shows.
  • It takes a grittier tone than what we’re used to seeing from Marvel.
  • It tackles Punisher and Elektra in the second season which is two more previously failed properties.

Yet, despite the odds being stacked against it Daredevil has become one of my favorite shows out there and I think I finally figured out the main reason why I, and the rest of the world like it so much: It has charm. Much like Matt Murdock himself, Daredevil surprises you with being immensely more enjoyable then what you might be expecting. This show has made me laugh, cry, gasp and scream at my television. It takes risks that need to be taken and it builds upon it’s brilliant story scene after scene.

I’m not going to talk about the plot as a whole because the story is incredibly well done and you should just take my word for it and go watch it.

Setting.

It has to be talked about that this show just breathes life into the city in a way that I really haven’t seen in a long time. It gets some of these perfect camera angles and lighting that makes it seem run-down but then in the very next moment you see a light hit just the right way to where you feel like you do want this city to be saved. I honestly can’t explain it as well their production team conveys it so you just have to watch it.

Cinematography/Choreography

In the same manner as the first season, both of these are outstanding in this show. I’m putting them together because in this show, they go hand in hand. The first season had that exceptional hallway fight scene and the second season is even better. Not only is the Stairwell Fight one of the better fight scenes I’ve seen in a long time but they keep upping the stakes throughout the season by adding The Hand.(A group of Ninja)

This show needs to be nominated for awards just on cinematography alone due to some of the angles they get. What’s really great is that you can tell they have a love for this show and they want it to be good. It’s the same reason I wasn’t worried about the new Star Wars because none of them are doing this just for the paycheck. Which leads me to my next and final point:

Characters/Acting

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The returning cast is even better than they were in the first season. Charlie Cox is still phenomenal as Matt Murdock/Daredevil as I’ve said before he can handle the ruthless aggression of the character as well as the charm and wit of the blind lawyer.

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I fall more in love with Deborah Ann Woll every time I see her as Karen Page. She has that fire that Karen needs but she also has a vulnerability that makes her sympathetic. Karen refuses to back down to Injustice, just like Matt and we need more characters like them today.

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I’ve heard a lot of people give crap to Elden Henson for his portrayal as Foggy Nelson but I think he’s great and he definitely proves that in his multiple trial scenes this season.

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Elodie Yung as Elektra is a definite standout. She steals the scene every time she’s on the screen and when she’s not, you’re just hoping she going to come back soon. Elektra only lets her guard down for one person and that’s Matt. She’s such a great character to learn about and they do a great job with her.

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Season 2 takes on the unenviable task of bringing The Punisher back to the screen. This, being the characters fourth attempt at bring brought to life, was a fairly tall order. Frank Castle isn’t an easy character to adapt because his story is flawed from the beginning. He’s not a hero in the traditional sense and that’s what makes him interesting to me in many ways. There are many reasons I didn’t like the older versions of The Punisher but one of the main ones was that it wasn’t realistic that there would be no consequences to his actions as a vigilante. In this version, no character dies without you noticing it. Every kill of his matters in a way that reminds me more of Sons Of Anarchy than a traditional Superhero show. It’s also helped tremendously by the exceptional job done by Jon Bernthal. Everyone keeps talking about the end of Episode 3 which recreates the famous scene from Punisher #3 by Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon with Daredevil tied up in chains and Punisher telling him that he can only save the other mans life if he can shoot frank in the head. Daredevil screams out: “What kind of Choice is that?” And Castle responds: “The one I make every time I pull the trigger”

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Now, that is one of my all time favorite punisher moments and it was easily my second favorite scene of his but hands down his best scene and possibly the best of the season was his scene at the cemetery. I don’t want to spoil the acting ability of Bernthal here so I won’t but at the end of Episode 4, there’s a ten minute scene between him and Charlie Cox as Daredevil that makes the entire season.

Overall

If you’re not watching the Marvel netflix shows then you are definitely missing out. Episode after Episode they only get better. The stakes keep getting higher and the stories only get better.

Change In Comics: A Need Or A Want?

The Year is 1973. Gerry Conway has been writing Spider-Man since August of the previous year. His run is, in my opinion, one of the mose underrated runs in comic history. He writes some great stories, creates new characters like The Punisher, has to follow stories by Stan Lee and Roy Thomas and he does all of this at just 19 years old. Conway’s run does have one story that everyone knows about and it’s the most important turning point in comic history: The Death Of Gwen Stacy. This was the first major status quo change in comics and It’s honestly one og my favorite comic book moments. Many people will ask why that’s my favorite turning point in comics and the answer is that everything else pales in comparison. We don’t get the masterpiece of Spider-Man : Blue if this doesn’t happen. This was really the first time the hero truly lost in comics and it changed everything. Peter hasn’t been the same since and honestly it’s made him an even better hero in many ways.

You can go back through the history of comics and find multiple changes to different characters. Like when Batman stopped using guns, when Superman started Flying, Captain America’s shield changing and switching up the entire team of X-Men. But should change be such a constant? In my opinion: Yes. Sure, certain constants have to happen in a story that are integral to a character. Krypton has to explode, Thomas and Martha Wayne have to die, Uncle Ben has to die, Abin Sur has to give the ring to Hal Jordan, Nightcrawler has to look like a demon and hundreds more. Every time there is change, there will always be people for it and people against it but I don’t think that there needs to be such an anger and hatred towards the writers for it.

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This article began from my discovery that people are still upset about The New 52. Yes, people are still upset about it and now they’re even angrier about “Rebirth” I can see where they’re coming from for Rebirth but I was talking to a good friend of mine last night and he hadn’t read a DC comic for a while so I explained Rebirth to him that the entire point is less of a cash grab. I know I probably just sound the eternal optimist but I truly believe that what they want to do is just bring about a true rebirth that fans can get behind. Every interview makes it sound like what they’re doing with it is learning from the good and the bad of the New 52 and building a new lineup of great titles that are accessible to people but also  true to what fans want. I understand that some people are probably tired of the reboot effect but I think we’re approaching a renaissance of comics because Marvel is giving us some of the best books they’ve put out in the last five years and if DC does what I’m hoping for then both companies are going to at an area that they haven’t been at together since the 80’s.

So we’ve discussed company wide changes well what about when singular creators make changes? Blasphemy! How dare they change a single in hopes of making an interesting story!

Let’s go over a list of these writers

  • Grant Morrison
  • Geoff Johns
  • Dan Slott
  • Ed Brubaker
  • Matt Fraction
  • Brian Michael Bendis
  • Scott Snyder
  • Joe Quesada
  • Brian Azzarello
  • Tim Seeley
  • Tom King
  • Jason Aaron
  • Jeff Lemire
  • James Tynion IV
  • Mark Waid

Yes I know : “But those are all new creators, they’re not as good as the classics” Yeah? Well let’s go over classical writers who changed things up.

  • Chris Claremont
  • Walt Simonson
  • Marv Wolfman
  • Denny O’Neil
  • Gerry Conway
  • David Michelline
  • Roy Thomas
  • Jim Shooter
  • Frank Miller
  • John Byrne
  • Len Wein
  • And my personal favorites for anyone who complains…STAN LEE and JACK KIRBY

The very epitome of Marvel is that it was the company that changed everything. They love to say that they’ve been around since the 30’s but they haven’t. Timely/Atlas was around in the 30’s and 40’s but Marvel didn’t really exist until 1961 when two young creators decided to do a comic exactly how they wanted to do one and it worked out incredibly well. Their stories had real world peoblems that were dealt in realistic ways…or as realistic as a man with the powers of a spider can. Comics are Change and sometimes it becomes something amazing and sometime it becomes something a bit less than amazing. What’s that? You want a list of changes that didn’t work? Oh why not.

  • Spider-Man : The Clone Saga.
  • Spider-Man : The Other.
  • Heroes Reborn.
  • Anything that Rob Liefeld touched that wasn’t Deadpool.
  • Superman being split into two beings.
  • Major Force as a villain in Green Lantern.
  • Identity Crisis
  • Ultimatum
  • Convergence
  • Arguably, Age Of Ultron by Brian Michael Bendis and Bryan Hitch but I want to reread it soon just to make sure.
  • Spider-Man : One More Day.
  • Final Crisis but only if you weren’t paying attention…I still love Grant Morrison.
  • Rick Remender on Captain America and Axis(this one’s mainly just me not liking his writing so you can take this one with a grain of salt if you’d like)
  • And the one that’s most difficult for me to admit : Fear Itself. Good Concept, but too many Tie-Ins killed it.

When movement isn’t consistent then stagnation is inevitable. Without change we don’t get the the Sinestro Corps or the Return of Hal Jordan.

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we don’t get Giant Size X-Men #1,

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Without Change, we don’t get Batman as a Dark Crudader for Gotham.

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and worst of all : We don’t get the Death Of Gwen Stacy.

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My final point is on the different creators and what makes the good ones as good as they are. A good creator knows what has come before and what they need to do with their stories. Geoff Johns is my favorite writer and he’s also my favorite example for this because his entire career has been based on the concept of taking older characters that haven’t been used for a while and making them amazing. His Green Lantern run is the best example. Creating Parallax as the embodiment of fear made Hal Jordan as a more sympathetic character because we can all be attacked by fear. He brought Hal back and made him this champion of Will that had made the return to the land of the living and the return to the corps.

Creators deserve the freedom to try out new things and I’m willing to keep an open mind to them. I think that All-New, All-Different Marvel has been great and I think that Rebirth has the chance to be one of the best comic events in recent history.

-Vance

It’s the most wonderful time of the year.

What? Christmas Already? No!

It’s time for the Lexington Comic and Toy-Con! Every year around the second or third week in march, I go to Lexington with my family (and most of the other Correspondents) and we have an absolute blast! If you’re in Kentucky and you’re looking for a great show then you gotta check this one out. It’s ran by some great people who want nothing more than to give us a great show. Also, Lexington has some of the nicest people, I’ve met numerous friends there and hope to meet some more this year.

Here’s the website where you can also check all the celebrities that are going to be there:

http://www.lexingtoncomiccon.com

As for what I’m looking for, I’m hoping to finish out my comics runs on Ed Brubaker’s Captain America, Walt Simonson’s Thor and Jonathan Hickman’s Avengers, New Avengers and Fantastic Four. Anything written by Greg Rucka is another, he’s quickly becoming one of my favorite writers. Hopefully I can find the right prices for these.

You can check out my adventures on here, on the Facebook page: “The Fandom Correspondents” or on my snapchat “vancemccarty94” Hope to see you this weekend in Lexington!

Why Kylo Ren is a Great Character: My Force Awakens Analysis

Wait, Kylo Ren? The whiny kid from the new movie? Well read on and find out.

 

Star Wars

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The franchise had been in something of a flux since ’83. The original three films are universally loved but it’s the expanded universe which split the fandom itself in a few ways. Some people love the books, some people hate them. Some people love the prequels, a lot of people hate them. Some people prefer “Clone Wars”, a much smaller audience prefer “Rebels”.(I love both) No matter what your preference is, Star Wars most likely means something to you.

The newest film “The Force Awakens” came out on December 18th so it’s been out a little over 2 months. This article will be full of the movie’s biggest spoilers and that’s why I’ve waited this long to write it.

If you’re still here…then let’s return to a galaxy far, far away.

Opening Line

 

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This will begin to make things right

7 words start off one of the best movies of 2015 and it’s one of the best opening lines of any film. Max Von Sydow plays Lor San Tekka who is the elder who says this line. He’s a classical actor and by all definition should have more screen time then just the first ten minutes, but I think the fact that he doesn’t is telling us something. How did he get this map? How do he and Kylo Ren know each other? Better yet, how does he know who he really is? His untimely death might not be the last we’ve seen of Lor San Tekka. I think he’s going to be a big character in flashbacks in Episode VIII.

This line works on so many different levels. It’s great for the characters to know that Luke is coming back and it’s a great line for those of us who knew that Star Wars could be good again. I like that Luke is basically a myth in this film, it’s such a cool dynamic to add to it. Farm-boy to Legendary Jedi Master.
Let’s go over the new characters.

Finn

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First up is Finn. Finn adds an incredible new part of the mythos to the film from his very first scene. We come to find out that Stormtroopers were taken from their families when they were young and raised to be killing machines. The only problem : They couldn’t remove that pesky soul and moral conscience which is really what moves the film forward. When Finn is involved in his first battle, his best friend dies in his arms and he loses it. He questions everything and doesn’t even fire his weapon at all throughout the battle. Afterwards he helps Poe escape and he turns his back on the First Order forever while joining up with Rey and BB-8 and finding the Resistance.

It’s a great story of redemption for Finn, he’s always viewed as the traitor or the deserter but that doesn’t matter because he’s meant for more and he does what’s right. Also he’s the first person to wield Luke’s old lightsaber and he’s not terrible with it…just not yet great either.

John Boyega plays him incredibly well and I look forward to seeing him in more things.

Poe Dameron

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Poe is probably my favorite new character from the film. He’s just a cool character because he’s one of the best pilots in the galaxy, he’s loyal to Leia and the Resistance and he believes in the force and Luke. He never backs down from the enemy, even when he’s been beaten. He’s just all around a great character. He’s also the new X-Wing pilot so I might be just a little bit biased. Oscar Isaac does a great job with this character and I’d love to get some more backstory for him in the next few films.

Rey

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Ah Rey, the new champion of the force. Rey is absolutely one of the best and most interesting characters in recent years. She’s our hero and it is well deserved. When we first meet Rey, she’s living on her own on Jakku and is providing for herself and is just being pretty awesome overall. She meets BB-8 and saves him from Teedo, the scavenger. She learns that BB-8 has very important information for the resistance and is focused on getting him to them and also going to the stars herself. They run into Finn and he says he’s with the Resistance which leads the two of them to run from the stormtroopers that are chasing Finn and leave Jakku. They run into Han and Chewbacca and go to ground someplace where they can hide for a while. This leads to a great scene that I will talk about a bit later in the article.

Rey gets captured and later on she has accepted her force powers and uses them to break free after learning who Kylo Ren is. She meets up with Finn and they have to stand there and watch as Kylo Ren/Ben Solo kills his father. It’s after this that Finn and Rey take Kylo on in a lightsaber duel. Finn gets knocked out but it’s when Rey uses the force to bring the lightsaber to her that is one of my favorite scenes of the film. Rey is very strong in the force and a lot of people have said “Well either Kylo sucks because he can be beaten by someone who just learned about the force or the screenwriters suck because we don’t understand enough about Rey” well let me explain : I’ve always looked at the force as something very spiritual and/or mental, physical prowess alone doesn’t do much for you. Rey has spent her entire life believing that she was left behind and forgotten, that she had to fend for herself and that she was basically a nobody, three things that can make you very strong in a mental state because she doesn’t use it as a crutch. Instead, now she has people that she cares about and she has something to fight for. Kylo Ren has been given everything his entire life. The son of Leia and Han would never want for anything and that led him to become arrogant and occasionally weak. He doesn’t have anyone to fight for but himself. This is where Rey can best him, she’s been raised to be strong and he’s been raised to be anything besides what he is at that point. It’s a great scene and a great finale to the film.

Rey is overall a very strong character which is what we need to see more of. I’m tired of boring weak characters that can’t make a good decision. We need more like Rey.

 

Phasma

 

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Captain Phasma is honestly the only part about this movie I was disappointed with. She’s hardly in it and you never get to see her in action. Hopefully we’ll get more in the sequel.

General Hux

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General Hux was great. He’s not in it a lot but he’s a great militaristic villain. He has a speech that basically makes him sound like a Nazi and if it wasn’t so intense it could’ve come off as a satire. Domhnall Gleeson does a great job with the role and I look forward to seeing more of him.

Snoke

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I thought Supreme Leader Snoke was handled well. He’s shrouded in mystery throughout the film but you get the sense from both Kylo Ren amd Hux that this is someone worth fearing. I’m looking forward to seeing more about him in the next two films.

Classic Characters

I thought that all of the classics were handled very well. No one was really hurting for Screen Time except for R2-D2 and Luke but both of those kind of made sense for the film.

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Obviously Han Solo gets the most screen time but seeing as it was his last outing, he deserved a good send off. I thought his death scene was handled very well particularly due to the lighting and the tension that Adam Driver and Harrison Ford bring to the screen. It was a good but heartbreaking finale for him.

Chewbacca will always be one of my favorite characters. He’s just a great character and yes, I teared up a bit when he screamed for Han. His rampage after that was rather terrifying to watch.

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Leia’s still awesome as she always has been. One of the few complaints I have about the movie is not knowing a lot about The First Order and The Resistance besides that one is the remnants of the Empire and the other is what was built by the New Republic to stop them. Presumably when they were building their new military they could only think of one person who could lead it. Leia’s strong and not willing to back down. Losing her son and her husband will definitely affect her in the next film, I’m just interested to see how.

My Favorite Scene/Flashbacks

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One of the shining parts of the entire film is basically everything that happens on Takodona(The Forest Planet) from Maz’s castle basically being the new cantina to the epic war featuring my personal favorite part : The X-Wings! In the middle of all of that though, we see Rey’s calling to the force for the first time. She goes down to this room in the castle and finds this chest, inside is the lightsaber that was wielded by Luke and Anakin Skywalker. When she touches it, she is flooded with visuals. We see young Rey being left on Jakku. We see the Cloud City corridor and hear Vader’s breathing. We see a robotic hand -that we assume is Luke’s- touching R2-D2. We hear voiceovers from Yoda and both of the actors who played Obi-Wan Kenobi. We see the Knights of Ren slaughter a group of people and then we see a vision of Rey and Kylo’s final fight in the snow. This is something new. Something that hasn’t really been seen in Star Wars as a full on dream sequence. That’s what makes it so cool.

Maz finds Rey after she drops the Lightsaber and Rey is obviously terrified. Maz tells her that the force and the saber is calling to her. She also tells her that whoever she is waiting for on Jakku isn’t coming back. Rey runs off but she later accepts the call and she definitely doesn’t run when she gets the lightsaber and goes up against Kylo Ren. It’s just an overall great sequence that builds on a lot and lays a lot of groundwork for the rest of the trilogy.

Kylo Ren

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Now, The final part of this analysis. What do we know about Kylo Ren? Honestly not as much as we’d like but more than you might think. Let’s look at it like this:

  • Son of Han and Leia.
  • Trained with a lightsaber.
  • Strong in the force.
  • Built his own powerful lightsaber.
  • Wants to follow in Darth Vader’s footsteps.

Now, when we first see Kylo Ren he is a menacing force to be reckoned with. He kills Lor San Tekka and then uses a force power that we’ve never actually seen by stopping a blaster bolt in mid-air. Later we see him use the force to interrogate Poe and it looks like he’s using a power that is very similar to Telepathy. So within 20 minutes of the film he’s already used two abilities that we haven’t seen before so clearly he’s very powerful.

He’s devoted to the idea of hunting down Luke and ending the Jedi and The Resistance. The only thing is that we see at multiple different points that he is tempted by the Light side of the force.

He takes orders from Supreme Leader Snoke, who we know next to nothing about but he has clearly heavily influenced Kylo.

Now, here is what I don’t understand : This is a world that loves complex characters.(Check out my first article if you don’t believe that) But for some reason Kylo Ren gets a lot of hate. They think he’s just whiny and that he isn’t that powerful but let’s really take a look here.

Everything about him is ruled by someone else. Everything. As ScreenRant has already pointed out(#5 on Marc N. Kleinhenz’ List of 10 best Force Awakens Scenes) he doesn’t get to reveal his own origin. Instead it is taken from him by Lor San Tekka, Snoke, Rey, Leia and Han.

  • Tekka hints at his lineage,
  • Snoke reveals his father,
  • Leia reveals a small part of his origin,
  • Rey gets him to take off his mask and Han reveals his name.

What’s the first comparison that everyone has for Kylo? Darth Vader. Who tells you anything consequential about Darth Vader in the original trilogy? No one. Obi-Wan talks a little bit about him and Yoda just admits that he was telling the truth in Cloud City. Vader is the one who reveals his connection to Luke and Vader is the one who tells Luke to take his mask off. You might be thinking that I consider this a problem with Episode VII’s script, quite the contrary though, I think it’s brilliant. Through these reveals we get more of Kylo Ren but there’s also a subtext that he is never in control of his own fate…except for one scene. Yes, The infamous bridge scene. No one tells Kylo to go looking for Han, in fact no one even knows that Han and the Others are there yet he just knows that they are and he goes to find them. It’s all been leading to this one moment of Father and Son. Ben Solo/Kylo Ren is split right down the middle in this story, so much so that if his story had been told in any other series than Star Wars then the bridge scene could’ve had a 50/50 chance on the way it played out. Everyone in the film roots against him and the one time we see him take an action of his own merit then we root against him.

Now don’t get this twisted, I’m not saying I sympathize with Kylo Ren and if you’re just angry at him for killing Han then I totally understand. The only thing I want to clear up is that he is actually one of the best written, new characters in the last few years. He’s conflicted, he makes terrible choices that he can’t come back from and most importantly : J.J. Abrams wrote him to be an analogy for annoying fanboys, the people who pick apart a film and say what’s wrong instead of just enjoying it. My Brother worded it the best when he said “A great Villain is someone who reflects what is wrong with our society.”

So yeah, you might be complaining about Kylo Ren because he reminds you of someone…

But what about that final scene? That final fight where he gets owned by Rey. Well I have an answer there too.

Forgive me because I can’t remember who first wrote/posted about the Bowcaster damage but If they are reading this then I happily give you credit for this.

The entire film has shown us that the Bowcaster can do a lot of damage, it’s sent multiple people flying and when Kylo Ren gets hit with it he just takes a knee. Just like “Oh you know, another day, another third degree blaster burn” Seriously, did no one notice that he was limping the entire fight? That he’s hitting his chest to keep his blood flowing so that he won’t freeze to death with an open wound? He’s incredibly physically wounded when he takes on Finn and Rey but then we have the Mental and Emotional state as well.

He’s just killed his father and has made the final action that he can’t come back from. Have you ever made a major life changing decision? You’re not really yourself afterwards. Kylo Ren is no different. So Emotionally, he’s done.

Then we have the mental state. You ever worked at a place for a long time and you know it inside and out and then someone new comes in and they complain about something and you realize that you’ve moved past that? That’s the entire point of that fight at the end. Kylo Ren has been given everything, the son of Han and Leia has wanted for nothing and because of it he feels entitled. Rey has fought for everything and that makes her stronger. She understands the value of everything, instead of the other one who just destroys countless computers and interrogation chairs. Maintenance crews for the The First Order have to have their work cut out for them. So mentally, he’s done again.

So Kylo Ren has three major things working against him in that fight and people are still wondering how he could lose? I guess we just watched a different film. They go out of their way to make sure you know that he isn’t Darth Vader, cause that’s the whole point. Kylo’s a bit of a weaker character when we leave him but he’ll be fully trained before the end of the next film. Speaking of which…

Overall/The Future.

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Look, I’m incredibly biased in my love of Star Wars but I also know a good script and and a bad script. Force Awakens was phenomenal and they cared so much about doing a good job that their love for it pours out in every scene. Star Wars can be fun, emotional and intelligent and that’s what this film does.

On one hand, I’m upset that we’re losing Abrams and Kasdan but Rian Johnson and Colin Trevorrow are going to do a great job on VIII and IX. The next film is going to do something that we’ve never seen. Show us the trainings of the dark side. We’ve read in the books and comics but we’ve never seen it in the films or the shows. Kylo Ren is returning to snoke to finish his training and Rey has gone to Luke to receive her training. We’re gonna see two of these characters become full fledged warriors of the force in the next one and I can’t wait for it cause the rematch is going to be insane.

I know you’re probably wondering who I think Rey’s parents are. My personal hope is that they are literally no one. It’d make her much more interesting to be someone who is no one and doesn’t come from any certain bloodline. The only problem is that they point heavily towards two possibilities in this film. I subscribe to the Obi-Wan Kenobi’s granddaughter theory personally but that’s only because I think Luke might be too obvious. There’s always a possibility of either but as long as they handle the reveal well, then I’m perfectly fine with whoever it is.

Overall, I absolutely loved this film. It was my favorite film of 2015 and it definitely deserves a second viewing from you.

-Vance

Speeding Bullets #1

“Speeding Bullets” is the new segment where I write a quick article on something that’s going on in the world of entertainment and fandom. Here’s my first one…

Rating Versus Writing by Vance McCarty

 

As of this writing, Deadpool has made 300 million dollars. Deadpool is rated R and for many good reasons. It’s violent, sexual, vulgar and just downright offensive to multiple different people but it is incredibly successful and now there is word of Fox making the next Wolverine movie R as well. This is where I get a little upset.

Now whether this was going to be the plan before or after Deadpool had a great first week is up for debate but that’s honestly not the point. The point is that you shouldn’t write to do anything other than tell a great story and try to get your point across. That’s it. End of story. The reason that many R rated films fail or aren’t as good as some others is because they focus too much on pushing that rating as far as they can and forget common story elements like pacing, character development and subtlety.

I understand that Wolverine is a more adult character in some of the comics but but he’s been used well in the past without having to glorify the harsher aspects of his character. I’m not saying we make him a G rated film but write the script and then focus on how it’s gong to be viewed by the critics and rating board.

The real reason this upsets me is that if the movie is good then everyone’s going to say that it was because it was rated R and that’s not the reason. The film “The Wolverine” had it’s fair share of problems but a PG-13 rating was not one of them. It’s actually a pretty good movie until about 30 minutes before the ending. I understand that there’s not buckets of blood like there logically should be but that’s not really what makes Wolverine who he is.

What makes a good film isn’t it’s rating, it’s the heart of the characters that shine through it. When Wolverine is written well it doesn’t matter if we have or haven’t seen him naked, heard him drop 40 F-Bombs or seen him commit gratuitously realistic violence, it matters that he is the honorable, fallen warrior with the heart of gold.

-Vance

Deadpool Review(Spoiler Free)

First and foremost, I’d be a terrible person if I didn’t say : “Do not take your kids to this movie.” This is not Avengers and you guys will have to walk out, have a very awkward conversation and most likely not go see anymore comic movies and that would be really sad because Civil War is gonna be great.

The Bad :

I walked out of this movie a little perplexed, my initial thoughts were “It was really funny,” “Ryan Reynolds does a fantastic job” and “They did really well with the fight scenes” but it constantly felt like there was something missing but I couldn’t figure out what it was. My brother and sister had very differing opinions on the film (My Sister loved it, My brother…not so much) and through their conversations I think I finally realized what it is : Deadpool is a concept piece that will most likely be amazing in the sequel.

Now let me explain, Deadpool starts off with one of the best action sequences I’ve ever seen in a film. It sets the tone for the movie and gets you right in the action. A little bit after that we get the first of a three part origin story for Deadpool. We learn about his connections with the people around him and we learn about why he wants revenge. It’s a very basic plot which is really my main problem with this movie. It takes so many risks otherwise with pushing the jokes to deserve the R rating but then it never really delivers with anything beyond watching Deadpool be Deadpool which is why I think I initially really enjoyed this movie in the theater but the more I think about it, it just wasn’t what it could’ve been.
The comedy does have it’s moments where it’s really funny. There are some moments that are just there to add to the R rating and that just shows me that they were just trying to get that rating. It occasionally feels like Instead of just writing to be funny, they were writing to be edgy.

The other thing is that Deapool is really the only fully formed character in this movie. I can’t tell you anything about the two villains, I can’t tell you anything about Vanessa beyond her promiscuity and I only know about one of the two X-Men who show up and that’s only because of my love of the character. Colossus being one of my favorite X-Men I have to say that although I liked how he was very innocent and kind like he is in the comics, he was made to be a gag character the entire movie.

So Plot and Characters (besides Deadpool) are lacking a bit. That’s my primary problem with this movie and although it’s a big one there is still some good from this movie.
The Good :

Ryan Reynolds is great in this role. I honestly can’t say anything against him. In fact, you can tell that the funniest parts are the ones where they let him just do whatever he wanted to do. He also handles the serious side as well as the comedy in a way that makes me want for him to have a better script to work with. He really feels like Deadpool throughout the entirety of this movie. Any bad that this movie does is counteracted by the greatness of Ryan Reynolds and I definitely want to be clear on that fact.

Now even though Colossus had moments where he was made a gag character, His and Deadpool’s confrontation on the bridge was probably my favorite part of the movie because it was hilarious and was 100% Deadpool.

The action is handled very well, particularly the opening scene on the bridge and the final sword fight.

Also right before the final fight is one of my favorite comic easter eggs of all time and I’m hoping that this character has a bigger role in future films.

Overall : This film tries to do a lot. It does the origin story, it tries to build the characters, it brings in the X-Men and it turns into a revenge story. There’s a lot riding on it but besides the origin and Deadpool himself, it falls kinda flat for me. Now my Sister brought up an interesting point that the first Captain America did the same thing but it also led to the Avengers and an even better movie in Winter Soldier. So sticking with that thought Deadpool will most likely have a phenomenal Sequel just as long as they focus on character development and story and less on what they can get away with in the rating system.

-Vance