The Defenders Season One Review

Defenders

Since 2015, we have been waiting to see the culmination of Marvel’s Netflix Series that started with Daredevil. The Defenders brings together the Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist series in a crossover event with decent success. Serving mainly as a follow-up to Iron Fist, the first season of the crossover series was short in length, but I thought that was a good thing. It would be harder to drag a series like this out over 13 episodes. To start with the positives, I enjoyed the way the camera filters changed between the characters. We get the reds for Matt Murdock/Daredevil, the yellows for Luke Cage, the blues for Jessica Jones, and the greens for Danny Rand/Iron Fist. This also extends to the secondary characters from their respective shows and the clothing that they all wear. There was one scene that we thought would focus on Jessica Jones, but everything around her was red. Then we see Daredevil show up to help her out. This was a cue to let the audience know that she was not going to be the focus of the scene. The show also does a great job integrating the main and supporting characters from the other shows into this one. The first meeting of Danny and Luke is hilarious, but one must wonder why it took Danny so long to activate his Iron Fist ability. The other introductions are more fluid, and it made sense how they would bump into each other. The character growth was good and noticeable. Each of the important characters have learned from their past experiences, but some things that still haunt them. Becoming a team helps them going forward, similar to how forming the Avengers helped Tony Stark/Iron Man. The acting was great, overall, and I was surprised by how well done the fight choreography was. Especially, from Finn Jones, since this was lacking in Iron Fist. Now, to move on to the negatives, the show has a few issues. I mentioned that the shorter season was a good choice. However, I do wish the episodes were longer. An additional 20 minutes each would have been great. This would have allowed for them to get through the set up quicker and get into the action. In addition, the fact that they don’t mention the greater Marvel universe is a mistake, a mistake that has plagued all the Marvel Netflix series from the beginning. The Defenders has the least mentions of any of the other shows before it. There is one mention of the “incident” but nothing else. It is unclear how much time has passed since Avengers. People are shocked to hear about superheroes in a world where aliens attacked New York and an army of robots destroyed Sokovia! My point is that they either need to state that this is an elseworlds universe or start making more firm connections with a better sense of timeline in reference to the greater Marvel Cinematic Universe. Finding out more about The Hand was great. Seeing all the leaders unveiled and learning their backstory was interesting. However, overall, this was a lackluster group of villains for this show. I was very skeptical when Sigourney Weaver was cast as the main villain for the show because I didn’t think she would bring the right amount of evil to the role of Alexandra. Unfortunately, I was right. We see Elektra in the trailers and her parts in the show are fantastic. Élodie Yung brings back the same conflict and viciousness Elektra had in season two of Daredevil. She should have been the main focus of the show, and The Hand should have been left in the background. I give The Defenders season one a Good 4/5. They left many questions open for future exploration. I hope things are better by the time the studio makes season two.

What The DCEU Could Learn From The DC Universe Animated Original Movies

dcanimated-1

The DC Universe Animated Original Movies have, for the most part, been cinematic masterpieces. The DC Extended Universe films, however, have been very divisive amongst fans and critics. You would think it would be easy for the studio to translate the best parts of the comics to their live action films, especially when they have had such success with their animated ones. Warner Bros. recently released their updated DCEU slate at San Diego Comic Con a few weeks ago. So let’s compare these future DCEU films with the DC Universe Animated Original Movies and other animated DC properties to see what they can borrow to improve the films going forward. Be warned, for there are mild SPOILERS ahead.

Why Are DC Universe Animated Original Movies So Good?

The DC Universe Animated Original Movies are not afraid to embrace their comic book roots. These animated features are lifted right from the page with very few changes from the original source material. The films usually have a dark tone that accentuates the characters’ personal conflicts and storylines. The films walk the line of being for children and adults. This is the sweet spot that a studio wants to be in. Since the films are animated, they can get away with showing lots of blood and gore that live action films can not. They also incorporate well-known voice actors, such as Kevin Conroy and Nathan Fillion, who have portrayed DC characters in other media.

Choosing Interesting Stories

Sup:Shaz

The current slate for the DCEU is as follows:
  • Justice League (2017)
  • Aquaman (2018)
  • Shazam! (2019)
  • Wonder Woman 2 (2019)
  • Green Lantern Corps (2020)
  • Flashpoint (2020)
  • Suicide Squad 2 (TBA)
  • The Batman (TBA)
  • Justice League Dark (TBA)
  • Batgirl (TBA)
Justice League is currently in post-production, and Aquaman has recently started filming. The rest of the films, however, are in the beginning stages of pre-production. Looking to the DC Universe Animated Original Movies and other DC animated shows, there are ripe stories for the picking that just need to be translated into live action. For example, Shazam! can easily be based off of Superman/Shazam!: The Return of Black Adam. Warner Bros. has decided to save Black Adam for his own film, which could easily work as a prequel to Shazam!. So, all they would need to do is change out the villain that Shazam!/Captain Marvel battles in the film. This would also incorporate Superman into another DCEU film while they figure out a Man of Steel sequel.

Continue reading

Eight Films In Development That No One Wants To See

twqdwhbs1dlkxw4od56f

Building franchises and shared universes have become a big staple in Hollywood. Every studio is looking for the next big thing that could make them a billion dollars. It seems as if the days of original films are coming to an end. One would think some studios would see the signs and stop trying to push films that just capitalize on existing brands. Below, I have a few examples of such films that have no business being in any form of production.

Transformers Universe: Bumblebee

Screen Shot 2017-08-10 at 10.18.43 PM

It’s sad that this film has already started filming. I love Hailee Steinfeld and think she is a terrific young actress, but this film may tarnish her career. The plot of the film revolves around a teenage girl who finds Bumblebee in the 1980s. No other details are known at this time, but the little bit we do know further confuses the timeline of the Transformers films. We know that the Transformers have been on Earth for a long time, but Bumblebee and the other Autobots did not arrive until the early 2000s. With Megatron frozen during this time period, who could the villain even be? This film may have worked if other films in this franchise had not screwed up the history of the Transformers on Earth. Everything about this film screams, “cash grab!”

Gotham City Sirens

Gotham-City-Sirens-DC-Movie

This is a great example of how reactionary Warner Bros. is with the DCEU. Just because people loved Harley Quinn in Suicide Squad does not mean she should get her own full length feature. Villains getting their own film worked for Suicide Squad because they were being forced by the government to fight a greater evil. What would the plot of this film be? Who would this trio of villainesses even fight and why? There are only two ways this could work well for Warner Bros. The first one being that if the film was Suicide Squad: Gotham City Sirens, then it would make sense. I could imagine that Amanda Waller could need an all-female team to go on a specific mission. Toss in Katana and a few more DC characters and you could have a great film. The second way this could work is if it was similar to a Marvel One-Shot. This would be a great bonus feature to add to a Blu Ray while also expanding the DCEU.

Venom

Tom-Hardy-Venom

It makes no sense for Sony to make a Spider-Man film universe without Spider-Man. Venom is a classic Spider-Man villain. Sure, sometimes he can be seen as an anti-hero when battling Carnage, but that does not make a great franchise. The casting of Tom Hardy as Eddie Brock/Venom is a phenomenal choice. However, we live in an age where great actors no longer sell movie tickets. Sony should work with Marvel and incorporate this film into the untitled Spider-Man: Homecoming sequel. The possibility of Peter battling both Venom and Scorpion would be great. He’s already going to space in Avengers: Infinity War. That would be a great time for him to become bonded with the symbiote and bring it back to Earth.

Batgirl

batman-arkham-knight-batgirl

Joss Whedon is a great writer, director, and producer. However, just because he is taking over pick-ups on Justice League, does not mean that Warner Bros. should beckon to his every whim. We all love Batgirl and want to see her on the silver screen, but a solo film is not what we want. Batgirl is a sidekick of Batman and her villains are Batman’s villains. Starring in a live action film on her own would not translate well for the audience. However, I think having her as a main character in Matt Reeves’ The Batman is a stellar idea.

Harley Quinn vs The Joker

Screen Shot 2017-08-10 at 10.30.18 PM

This is just a big solid NO. I don’t know why this idea was ever taken seriously. Once again, maybe a one-shot of them having a friendly or deadly competition, but no feature film. Otherwise, save the next Joker appearance for The Batman.

Nightwing

Dick-Grayson-as-Nightwing-from-DC-Comics

Just like Batgirl, Nightwing does not need his own film. Seeing Dick Grayson on-screen would be fantastic, but only if it is in a supporting role. It would be great if he appeared in The Batman as Bruce’s original Robin. I would enjoy seeing their on-screen dynamic. It would be good to see how he was affected by the murder of Jason Todd. We know that this incident led Bruce to become a more mean and grizzled vigilante who started branding criminals. Also, it would be nice to see him interact with Barbara/Batgirl since she dated Dick and Bruce in the comics.

Silver & Black

Black-Cat-and-Silver-Sable-movie

Again, it makes no sense for Sony to make a Spider-Man film universe without Spider-Man. However, unlike Venom Silver Sable and Black Cat can work without Spider-Man. The issue is that we would rather see them in a universe where they can interact with the web-slinger and other Marvel characters. I could actually see this working well as a Netflix series more so than a feature film. This would allow the writers to establish more backstory for both leading ladies. Then, they could possibly cameo in future Marvel films and other Marvel Netflix series.

4 Reasons Why Thanos Is A Terrible Villain For The Avengers

Infinity War

We all know Thanos is gearing up to take out the Avengers and the Guardians of the Galaxy in the upcoming Avengers: Infinity War film, but should we be that excited to see him? Thanos has been set up as the “Big Bad” since the end of the first Avengers film. Since then he has only appeared twice in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. He had a small part in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 1 and appeared in a post credits scene of Avengers: Age of Ultron. In my opinion, Thanos has proven himself to be a terrible villain for the MCU, and I can list four reasons why. Beware: there will be SPOILERS for the MCU listed below.

4. He Gave Away The Mind Stone

Scepter

After Loki disappeared at the end of Thor we see him appear as the main villain in the The Avengers. In between the two films he came into contact with Thanos who provided him with a powerful scepter capable of controlling and opening people’s minds. Loki was sent to Earth to take over the planet and retrieve the Tesseract for his new master. Of course, he fails and is imprisoned back on Asgard. We later find out in Avengers: Age of Ultron that the scepter housed the Mind Stone. This would mean that Thanos gave an Infinity Stone to someone he barely knew so that he could retrieve another Infinity Stone, the Space Stone. This makes no sense because if Thanos is as powerful as we have been led to believe, then he should have retrieved the stone himself. Even if he felt that task was beneath him, why not send a member of his Black Order to retrieve it? Surely, he trusts them more than he trusts Loki.

3. He Did Not Go After The Power Stone Himself

Ronan_the_Accuser

Here is another example of Thanos sending someone else to do his dirty work for him. In Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 1, we find out that Thanos made a deal with Ronan the Accuser for the Power Stone. If Ronan retrieves the Power Stone for Thanos, then Thanos will destroy Xandar for Ronan. Star-Lord ends up finding the stone first, leading into the plot of the film. Two things are wrong with this situation. Once again, why doesn’t Thanos go retrieve the stone himself, or send a member of his Black Order? As a matter of fact, two members of his Black Order, Gamora and Nebula, were loaned to Ronan as additional muscle. Ignoring this fact, Ronan actually sent his ally, Korath, along with some Sakaarans, to retrieve the stone. If I were performing a task for the intergalactic tyrant, then I would make sure to handle it personally, lest I face the consequences of failure. Yet, as we learn later in the film, Thanos is all bark and no bite.

2. He Already Lost Two Members Of His Black Order

gamora-nebula

During Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 1, we learn from Nebula that she and Gamora have other adopted siblings. As we recently found out, the Black Order is made up of Thanos’ forcibly-adopted children. This would mean that Nebula and Gamora are also members of this group. They have both shown great fighting ability and tremendous strength in the two Guardians films and are truly forces to be reckoned with. We do not yet know their strength compared to their other siblings, nor if their siblings have the same hatred for Thanos as they do. That being said, these sisters have since rebelled against their father and they plan to kill him. Gamora joined the Guardians of the Galaxy, and Nebula is off doing her own thing. Why would Thanos even allow his children to leave his employ? Why hasn’t he hunted them down and punished them, or at least sent his other children to perform the task for him? It’s evident that Nebula and Gamora both still fear Thanos and know that taking him out is no easy task. Still, you would think they would want to get as far away as possible, if he is as bad as they say.

1. His Infinity Gauntlet May Be A Fake

thanos

After Avengers: Age of Ultron we know that Thanos will now be taking a more active role in gathering the Infinity Stones. He dawns an Infinity Gauntlet and states, “Fine — I’ll do it myself”. This is weird because we previously saw an Infinity gauntlet in Odin’s vault in Thor. Kevin Feige himself has admitted that there are two Infinity Gauntlets in the MCU when speaking with Cinema Blend.

“There are two different gloves…That was not Odin’s vault that you see at the end.”

Why would there need to be two Infinity Gantlets when there are only six Infinity Stones? Either there are six additional infinity stones that we don’t know about, or one of them is a forgery. In the comics, the Infinity Gauntlet is normally right handed. The more regal looking gauntlet we see in Odin’s treasure vault is right handed, and the more basic gauntlet that Thanos wields is left handed. If we follow the comics, this leads me to believe that Thanos has the fake gauntlet and will not be able to use the true power of the Infinity Stones in Avengers: Infinity War. I was luckily able to see the San Diego Comic-Con Avengers: Infinity War trailer and know what Thanos is bringing to the table. However, we do also have the fourth untitled Avengers film to look forward to, so maybe Thanos bites the dust early, or he is like Mandarin in Iron Man 3, and he is just a puppet.

Avengers: Infinity War is due to hit theaters on May 4, 2018.

What are your thoughts on Thanos’ involvement in the MCU? Leave your comments below.

 

Ten Characters Likely To Show Up In Captain Marvel

Captain-Marvel-Movie-New-Logo

Considering that Marvel just had their panel at San Diego Comic Con yesterday it is time to go over who may be in their upcoming Captain Marvel film. They revealed that the film will be a prequel to the current MCU taking place in the 1990s. With that information we can deduce who will probably pop up in the film. We know that the Carol Danvers version of Captain Marvel will appear in the film, Nick Fury will appear pre eye injury, and the villains will be the Skrulls, and alien race of shapeshifters. Considering the timeline the following people would make sense.

Richard and Mary Parker

parkers

In the comics Richard and May Parker were agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. who tragically died on a mission. Considering that this film will take place in the ’90s it would be years before Peter is born, so we could explore a little about his parents. Nick Fury would be their connection to this film as they could be his “go to” agents during this time period such as Phil Coulson and Maria Hill have been in the current period.

Ben and May Parker

Screen Shot 2017-07-23 at 12.29.27 PM

If Richard Parker shows up it would make sense for his older brother Ben and his wife May to make a quick cameo. This could be a small role in the film just to add some familiarity. Considering Tom Holland has showed interest in Tobey Maguire portraying the character of Uncle Ben, it would be great if they cast him. Giving a nod to fans of the original Sam Raimi Spider-Man trilogy.

Peggy Carter

Agent-Carter-Ant-Man

Considering she is one of the founders of S.H.I.E.L.D., it would make sense for her to appear as one of Nick Fury’s superiors. She has made a cameo during the beginning of Ant-Man which took place in 1989, meaning she could still be active within the organization during the ’90s.

James “Rhodey” Rhodes

Don_Cheadle_as_James_Rhodes

This would be a great addition to the film even if it’s only in a small role. Colonel James Rhodes is a military officer and pilot in the United States Air Force. Carol Danvers was also a member of the United States Air Force, so it would make sense if they knew each other during their youth. Maybe it was her disappearance that made him so dead set on finding Tony during the events of the first Iron Man, as he couldn’t lose another friend.

Hank Pym

Hank Pym

Having quit S.H.I.E.L.D. in 1989 it would be cool if Nick Fury had to contact Hank Pym to get some information from him during the film. Possibly calling in a favor that needs someone who can shrink. This could allow us to see more of him in the  suit and his interaction with other S.H.I.E.L.D. personnel aside from Howard Stark and Peggy Carter.

Alexander Pierce

Robert-Redford

Alexander Pierce and Nick Fury were once good friends. Maybe, this film could show fans the infamous Bogata mission that convinced Pierce to promote Fury to head of S.H.I.E.L.D. Also it would be great if we see him manipulating and recruiting other S.H.I.E.L.D. agents to join Hydra. Perhaps he tries to convert Richard and Mary Parker only for them to reject him. Leading him to have the Winter Soldier murder them sometime in the early 2000s. That would give Peter and Tony even more in common.

Reed Richards

Reed Richards

Now we’re delving into more wishful territory. With the realization that the Skrulls are going to be the main villains of the film it would be great to get a clip of a young Reed Richards to let fans know that Marvel and Fox have reached a deal. I’m pretty sure the Skrulls belong to Fox and those characters are major villains for the Fantastic Four. It just seems like the possibility is there.

Victor Von Doom

Victor Von Doom

This is even more wishful thinking as I doubt it would happen. Reed and Victor used to be friends during their college days. It would be nice if they were shown as fellow students at M.I.T. with a young Tony Stark. Or at least we could get a mention of Latveria in the MCU.

What are your thoughts on the Captain Marvel news from San Diego Comic Con? Is there anyone you would like to appear in the film? Leave your thoughts below.

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets Review

Valerian_and_the_City_of_a_Thousand_PlanetsI am not a fan of 3D films. Whether it’s converted in post production or filmed with 3D cameras, I would rather not see it. For my early screening of Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, I was forced to see it in 3D. However, I will not let that hamper my review of the film, for it was not terrible. Now, take that with a grain of salt because this was not a fantastic film either. Based on the very  popular French science fiction comics series, Valérian and Laureline, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets tells the story of Major Valerian and Sergeant Laureline as they try to complete a mission for the World State Federation. The opening of the film was great. It showed how Alpha, the titular “City of a Thousand Planets”, came together while the late David Bowie’s “Space Oddity” played in the background. Next, we are treated to the beautiful scene of an alien world before we are introduced to the main characters: Valerian and Laureline. While I think Dane DeHaan is a fantastic actor, I’m not sure that this was the right role for him. I didn’t buy him as the ladies’ man that Valerian is supposed to be, nor did I buy his apparent affection for his partner, Laureline. Their romance seemed to be forced throughout the entire film. It would have been better if they played the characters as platonic partners. Cara Delevingne was fine as Laureline, but she wasn’t given much to do. She is a much more impressive actress than her last few roles have shown. Much of the dialogue in the film was stiff and almost comical. There are even a few lines lifted straight out of Taken, but I’ll let you wait to see when that happens in the film. Other parts of the plot did not make sense and there was almost a rush at the end to explain everything. I do have to admit that Luc Besson knows how to make both a beautiful looking and great sounding film. The creatures and worlds you see on-screen are great, and somewhat believable. With a little better writing this could have been another The Fifth Element. The best way to describe this film is that it is a good “background film.” Those are basically films that you have playing in the background while you are doing other things. It is something that you want to watch, but don’t care if you miss a few seconds here and there. Apparently, Luc is now writing a Valerian trilogy of films, so I would be interested to see where he takes these characters. However, I would not be upset if it never came to fruition. Overall, I give Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets a Normal 6.5/10. I feel Luc Besson works better when given smaller budgets, so studios should remember that when he pitches them his next film.

The Evolution Of The DCEU Batman Film

Matt-Reeves-Batman
We just got word that Matt Reeves has decided to scrap the Ben Affleck script for The Batman and write a new one from scratch. What does this mean for this film’s future? The film has undergone so many changes and shifts and Warner Bros. has not even started filming. Reeves co-wrote his most recent film, War for the Planet of the Apes. Considering the current early reviews of that film, maybe that is why Warner Bros. gave him the go ahead on a new script. Let us go back and check to see how this film has developed over the past few years.
suit
The film was originally Ben Affleck’s baby! He was going to write, direct, and star in The Batman, and we were all excited. But, after the terrible opening of his film Live By Night, coupled with his addiction and marital issues, Ben eventually decided to step down as the director of the film. This was understandable as he is just a man. Sometimes, the world can just pack too much on our shoulders, and we have to let up. Still, we knew that he would be starring in the film. We also expected Warner Bros. to continue using Affleck’s script that he co-wrote with Chris Terrio and Geoff Jahns. However, Reeves recently revealed on MTV’s Happy Sad Confused podcast that this plan has changed. He scrapped the earlier script that Affleck, Chris Terrio and DC’s Geoff Johns had worked on.
We know that Joe Manganiello was all set to play the film’s main villain, Deathstroke, but how will that change now? When Matt Reeves was first hired to direct, Manganiello was not to sure his character would be kept in the loop. When he was a guest on Pittsburgh Today Live, a few months ago, the topic of The Batman came up. When asked if he was playing Deathstroke, Manganiello paused and said, “Umm. Maybe. We’ll see.” I think it would be tragic to remove Manganiello from the script because he is a great actor. He definitely has the build and ferocity to play a villain of Deathstroke’s caliber.
What we don’t know is how much of Ben Affleck’s script Matt Reeves will incorporate into his own draft. While Ben did say Deathstroke was the main villain in his script, it was reported that many other Batman villains would also appear in minor roles. With Reeves now re-writing the script, we don’t know if he will use a brand new villain, never before seen on screen, or one that we all know and love. There is a possibility that we will get to see Jared Leto’s Joker make a return to the DCEU. Most fans enjoyed his presence in Suicide Squad, but didn’t think he was in the film enough. Bringing him back as the main villain in The Batman could quench the thirst of the fans who desire to see a lot more of this character very soon. Jared, himself, has even mentioned the possibility of teaming up with Batman in a movie. Maybe this was foreshadowing for something we did not know was happening.
BTAS
We know that Matt Reeves is planning to write a noir driven version of Batman, focusing more on his detective skills. This would be similar to the way Batman: The Animated Series portrayed the character. In that series we got to see the Joker and Harley Quinn a lot. Fun fact: Harley Quinn was actually invented specifically for that series. I think it would be great to get a film that emphasizes Batman’s detective skills along with his brutality, which would possibly provide more depth into the psyche of Bruce Wayne as his backstory is explored. We know that he has been active as Batman in the DCEU for 15 years. We know that at least one Robin was murdered by the Joker and Harley Quinn. We know that Batman has become a lot meaner and grizzled over the years. Seeing this take on Batman in the world Warner Bros. has created with the DCEU could possibly even trump what Christopher Nolan did with the series.
JLU
How will these changes to the film affect the Justice League? I doubt that whatever happens with the Batman script will affect the Justice League at all. The only real question is: will The Batman be mostly a prequel told through a flashback like Wonder Woman or a follow up taking place after the events of Justice League? More than likely it will be a follow up, but Wonder Woman’s continued success may make the studios want to duplicate the structure of that film.

5 Reasons Why Logan Is The Worst Of All The Wolverine Films

logan

SPOILERS

If you have not seen Logan and do not wish to have most of the film spoiled for you then please do not read the rest of this article. Unless, of course, you don’t care… then feel free to proceed.

The Plot

Logan cruisin’ with X-23

If you are reading this, then clearly, you have either seen Logan or you don’t care if the film is spoiled for you. This is your last — I repeat, last — time to leave the article.
The plot of Logan is very basic. Five years after the end of X-Men: Days of Future Past Logan is finally getting old. With his advanced age, his healing factor is starting to diminish. Mutants are supposedly on the brink of extinction, with no mutant births since 2004. An elderly Charles Xavier is suffering from a degenerative brain disease that causes him to momentarily lose control of his powers. This caused him to kill most of the X-Men and injure several citizens of Westchester, New York, a few years back. He and Logan have been on the run ever since, with Logan keeping Charles hidden in the Mexican desert while he works to save up enough money to buy a boat for them to go out to sea. In the midst of this, Logan meets a woman who offers him more than enough money if he will escort her and her daughter to Canada. He reluctantly agrees, and from there we get into the bulk of the film.
First off, this plot makes no sense, and I have several reasons as to why. One: why would Logan and Charles be on the run and saving money? Charles was very wealthy, and if he had some degenerative brain disease, then he has more than enough money to get the intensive care needed to aid him. Two: Logan has a healing factor. Even with it being on the fritz, he could have easily robbed a bank to get the funds he needed. Moreover, if he was confronted by any cops, it is unlikely that they could have stopped him. Three: they live in a world where we have serums and special containment units that inhibit a mutant’s powers! This should have been the first resource Logan looked into for helping the professor.

Lack Of Other Mutants

Logan reads X-Men

Where are the rest of the mutants? This is a question I kept asking myself during the entire film. I understand that the film reveals that Transigen developed a formula to suppress the mutant x-genome 25 years ago, but where are all the other mutants? If a mutant hasn’t been born in 25 years, then where are all the mutants that were born 26 years ago and before? The earth should still be full of mutants, powerful mutants, who should be all over the news. This is a timeline where, due to the events of X-Men: Days of Future Past, mutants are a normal aspect of life. We saw Mystique save President Nixon from assassination in the ’60s. We saw in X-Men: Apocalypse that they are learning about mutants in schools. Even in Deadpool, we saw that they have a formula to activate the mutant x-genome in normal humans. Transigen should have been able to develop a mutant army without going through the trouble of raising them from birth or cloning them from DNA samples.

The Big Bad

Logan meets Logan?

This was the most disappointing part of the film. The Big Bad was a clone of Wolverine. I understand the message of Logan having to battle his inner demons therefore battling himself, but why a clone? Why would a company clone Logan? He is a Beta level mutant. If you want an unstoppable mutant killing machine, then clone Professor X, or Magneto, or Jean Grey, etc. The list could go on. There are so many other, better choices that they could have made. Technically, they did a better job with the Big Bad in X-Men Origins: Wolverine! That version of Deadpool had multiple powers. Why didn’t Transigen create an X-24 with multiple powers? It’s 2029, and they clearly have the technology.

The Ending

Logan’s grave

So, Logan dies in the end. That’s understandable since Hugh Jackman wanted a definitive ending for his character. But did he really get one? Logan was killed by X-24 and X-24 was killed by X-23. Logan had a diminished healing factor so enough damage to his body could easily kill him if he didn’t get help. X-24, however, was shot in the head with an adamantium bullet. His healing factor was working perfectly. His bullet wound, while quite large, would eventually heal and he would awaken with no memories of what happened. Maybe this was intentional, for it would allow Hugh Jackman to return in another Wolverine film if Fox ever decided to make one. In addition, burying Logan before they crossed the border seemed wrong. He should have at least made it to Canada, his homeland, to be buried. Speaking of Canada, we never actually get to see who was waiting for the children over the border. It would have been great if it was an older Rogue, bringing everything full circle for Logan. Alas, that is not what we got.

Lack Of Connection To Other X-Men Films

Logan realizing that Jean Grey and Scott are still alive

As I have made evident in my entire article, Logan was pretty much excluded from the rest of the X-Men film series in both time period and story. Charles killing several of the X-Men makes sense with his powers, but there’s no way he killed all of them. Of all the X-Men, Jean Grey should definitely be alive. She had a mind more powerful than Charles, so his seizures should not have affected her like the others. Sure, we got to see Caliban, who also appeared in X-Men: Apocalypse, but no one else. No Rogue. No Magneto. No Deadpool. I read that Sabretooth was in an early draft of the script, but didn’t make the final cut. It does not make sense to me why they would cut him. We know from previous films that he and Logan are half-brothers. That part of the timeline has not changed. He would have been a perfect tertiary character for the film. Heck, making X-24 a Sabretooth clone would have even been acceptable. To quote John Campea, “Fox cleary has a sign in their offices that says CONTINUITY SCHMONTINUITY”. Hopefully, Hugh Jackman decides he wants to come back so that we can get a proper final Wolverine film.

How Disney Made Me Fall In Love With Superhero Movies

I know you’re probably thinking this is going to be an article about the , but it’s not. As a Black man growing up I didn’t have many superheroes that I related to. My first introduction to a Black superhero was Blade in when I was eight years old. He was the first superhero that I ever saw on the big screen yet he was different from your normal hero. He wasn’t well-known to the public, he didn’t wear a cape, and he murdered anyone who got in his way! I thought he was pretty awesome, but not many of my friends knew who he was. Blade remains my favorite hero to this day, but Blade wasn’t the reason I fell in love with superhero movies. The blame for that lies with a little known DCOM called Up, Up and Away.

A Family Of Superheroes

Warrior Woman (left), Silver Charge (middle), Bronze Eagle (right), Warrior Eagle (front)

The 2000 Disney Channel Original Movie is a comedy/adventure about a boy from a family of superheroes who, despite not having any superpowers of his own, is called on to save the world. What was great about this film to me was that all of the main heroes were Black. Not only were they Black, but they were your typical nuclear family. Somewhat like if the Huxtables were secretly superheroes. I could connect with the main character Scott Marshall/Warrior Eagle as I also had an older brother who was better at things than I and a younger sister who was annoying. He just wanted to impress his parents, which is something every kid wants to do, no matter how old they get. Seeing this film normalized the idea for me that Black people could be great superheroes and that superheroes aren’t always out saving the world. Sometimes they just want to spend time with their family.

The Director

Robert Townsend

Robert Townsend, who plays Jim Marshall/Bronze Eagle in the film, was also the director. He showed us that superheroes can have normal problems, normal families, and yet still be loved by the public even though they’re Black. Basically letting young kids know that being Black was not abnormal. Townsend is not shy to making superhero films. In the early 1990s he wrote, directed, and starred in another Black superhero film called The Meteor Man. He brought some of the same love and fun he had with that movie into directing Up, Up and Away. It almost feels as if they could take place within the same shared universe. In actuality it makes sense that they could because on the Earth of Up, Up and Away both Superman and Spider-Man exist within the same reality. A movie of this caliber could not be made today with different studios owning the rights to different characters. The last time we heard a #DC and #Marvel character mentioned in the same film was Sam Raimi’s first Spider-Man movie back in 2002. And I’m pretty sure in that film Superman was being described as a comic book character and not a real person.

Final Thoughts

tumblr_m9dpg8HqHQ1qka4t0o3_250

Looking back, without seeing Up, Up and Away I would have never fallen in love with superheroes in general, let alone any movies made about them. After seeing this film is when I especially started reading comics and trying to write a few of my own. My love of putting my ideas on paper and writing stories was sparked at that moment. It has since evolved to my love of writing movie reviews and stories about the movie business. If you have not had the chance to see this film I recommend that you look it up online and try to find a copy. Its well worth a watch.