Posts Tagged ‘superheroes’

h1

Not a Twinkie

October 1, 2013

Man of Steel screenwriter Davis S. Goyer took advantage of the lull before a new Bat-trilogy Blu-ray (new packaging or something) to remind us all that Superman kills now.   The notion that he wouldn’t is “a rule that exists outside of the narrative.”

Let’s cross the street where they’re not quite so confused, shall we?  A couple weeks ago, a friend sent me this great trailer for Lego Marvel Superheroes.  I’m not a Marvel, I’ve never particularly clicked with their characters, but watching this just makes me feel good:

I think it’s the same reason I enjoy the Marvel movies.  It’s so unabashedly enthusiastic about being a superhero vehicle.

DR. DOOM:
Dr. Doom’s Doom-Ray of Doom

ORCHESTRAL HORNS:
BWOMG-BWOMMBWOMMM

This clip is fearless about standing center stage and bellowing out what it is.  Superheroes in Legos, the bad guys versus the good guys.  Nobody here is running away from it.  Nobody is ashamed of it or afraid of being silly.  Nobody is pretending this is serious fucking business.

Isn’t that refreshing?  I don’t think anything with Batman that I’ve seen in a decade has made me feel as good as this 2:05 of characters I don’t give a crap about.

As I was sitting there, fingers poised over my keyboard trying to find a way to express that succinctly in order to share the video on Facebook, I found myself looking at a Twinkie.

not-at-twinkie

Facebook being Facebook, I found myself looking at a Twinkie

Maybe it was the history of those old time Hostess ads in comic books, when the heroes distracted the villains with delicious cakes and fruit pies.  Maybe it’s the fact that Twinkies were out of production for a while there and their return was announced right after Man of Steel, prompting more than a few comments that if they’d only come back sooner, Zod could have been handled the old-fashioned way and all that destruction porn could have been avoided.

Whatever the chain of associations, it led to an analogy that can explain the divide in superhero comics and movies.  I find food analogies cut through so much faux intellectual B.S.  You can convince otherwise intelligent people of a lot of absolute nonsense using phrases like “a rule that exists outside of the narrative,” until you apply the principles to something they understand on such a basic level as food.  Maybe you don’t know why the Miller apologist is wrong, maybe you don’t know how to construct the counterargument, but once you get that applying those principles amounts to serving bleu cheese and chopped liver on a Triscuit for Christmas dinner, you do know that is a really bad idea.  Whether you can articulate the reason or not, you’re gagging.  You know there has to be something very, very wrong in any chain of the logic that ends in this being a tolerable plan.  You know you’re not going to serve it to your kids, no matter what argument it makes or how big its advertising budget.  It’s a part of our make-up they haven’t broken: if it makes you wretch, don’t eat it.

So, back to the Twinkie.  Is there anybody reading this who doesn’t know what they are?  Sweet yellow cake with a white, sweet cream filling that may or may not be vanilla-ish flavored.  It’s a kid’s food, most of us ate them and remember them fondly.  There were knock-offs and generics.  There are also some very prestigious restaurants that have made a gourmet version.  (Think champagne cake with a filling of blancmange infused with vanilla and cognac) and less prestigious ones serving up the traditional twink deep-fried, a substance so orgasmically sweet and rich it became an analogy for… well never mind. They’re good.

Now here’s the thing, if none of that sounds good to you, then you don’t like Twinkies.  It’s okay, none of us are judging you.  For most humans, sweet is the first set of taste buds to develop.  We go for it and it’s nature’s way of telling us: eat the berry not the bark.  But if for whatever reason you don’t like sweets, then you don’t like Twinkies.

Superheroes, like Twinkies, are certain things.  They’re fun.  There is humor and color and life in their stories.  Even when there’s angst and horror, it gets broken up with a little f-ing fun.  Burton knew it.  Schumacher absolutely knew it.  He made the worst goddamn Twinkie any of us have ever seen, but it WAS a Twinkie.

Print comics have succeeded in convincing what politicians call “the base” that Twinkies don’t have to be sweet, they don’t have to be made of cake or have cream filling, and it is just so silly and childish and stunted to imagine they do.   And, as in politics, ideas that go beyond ‘completely wrong’ into the land of 2+2 = cream cheese nonsensical can be accepted inside these little bubbles of true believers, but they run into trouble when they come out here into the real world where reality is in play.   That’s why they have those names.

Is this just math that you do as a Republican to make yourself feel better or is this real?

Is this just math that you do as a Republican to make yourself feel better or is this real?

The DC movies have been serving up pickled coffee beans and calling them Twinkies.  They’re not, and those of you who cannot let an un-Nolan thought (or an un-Miller thought or an un-gogglewhore thought) pass without comment are not going to argue it into being one.  You like the pickled coffee beans, we get that.  Some of us do too on occasion.   I like bitter and I like sour from time to time.  But not in a Twinkie.  Those things are not Twinkies, no matter what it says on the box or how big a name the director is, how big the advertising budget is, or how you choose to belittle those who refuse to validate your delusion.

Originally published as Not a Twinkie on Blogger

Advertisements
h1

Like I Haven’t Looked at All That

September 28, 2013

Like I haven’t looked at all that, marriages and all that-and what do you get for it? What do you get?

I’ve had my fun with DC Comics tripping over themselves all month.  They’re an entertainment company and it’s the first time in over a decade they’ve actually been entertaining.  But c’mon, do you really think if I cared what some nimrod from Team Readers-Be-Gone had to say about marriage, you wouldn’t have heard at least ONE song from Company by now?

h1

Dear Santa, All I Want for Christmas is… Wait, does Barbie come with a latex catsuit?

September 1, 2011

catwoman-selina-kyle-anne-hathaway-princess-little-girls-castles-when-i-grow-up-i-want-to-be-2Goggles aside, Catwoman fans and Cat-Tales fans in particular have three very good reasons to be excited about Anne Hathaway playing Selina Kyle in The Dark Knight Rises. We can’t know what’s in the script, naturally, but there were two recent episodes that lead me to believe that, as far as the actress is concerned, this is a Catwoman we can get behind.

Most of us made the acquaintance of the beautiful 28-year-old actress waaay back in 2001 when she starred opposite Julie Andrews in The Princess Diaries. At the time, Anne told Access Hollywood, “a lot of questions that I used to get asked were, ‘So, every girl when she grows up wants to be a princess, did you want to be a princess when you grew you?’ And I so wish I’d said what I felt back then, because the truth was, ‘No, I wanted to be Catwoman!’ And now I am… That dream came true, for sure.”

That’s it. Game. Set. Match.

She wanted to be Catwoman. The way some little girls dream of fairy tale castles, handsome princes, white weddings and My Little Pony (not necessarily in that order), some of us dreamed of being Catwoman. When modern comics have gone off the rails, it’s because they forgot that core truth: we want to be these characters. Look, up in the sky, it’s Superman! You’re a kid, you’re small, you’re weak. Imagine being able to fly! Imagine being strong enough to pick up a train and hurl it like a javelin! We grow up wanting to be these characters.

Ms. Hathaway has clearly not forgotten. “That dream came true, for sure.” So far, so good.

Now obviously there is only so much an actress can do if the material misses the mark. Back when Tim Burton was making Batman Returns, Sean Young was clearly in touch with her childhood dream to be Catwoman. Her stunts to get Burton’s attention got her a ‘crazy actress’ label and no role, but there is perhaps a better insight into the desire we girls have to become that powerful and sexy feline fatale than there is in what actually hit the screen. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed Burton’s movies at the time, but his Gotham is, by his own admission “a freak show” and his Batman and Catwoman are the very much product of that era’s comics: damaged freaks that no sane person would want to be. His Catwoman’s power, like so much what comes out of the comics origins, is not a natural part of the woman animal. Selina isn’t simply beautiful and sexy and smart and strong because she is born that way. As if beautiful, witty and savvy women don’t occur in nature, her amazing power to make the Dark Knight… rise must be explained with an origin. It is, invariably, a reaction against oppression, exploitation, or abuse.

We’re getting back to Anne in a minute, I promise.

How exactly does a smart, sexy, witty and talented woman react when she’s been misrepresented in the press? When she is not a damaged psycho that can only snarl and hiss, when she has a sense of humor and a playful instinct for mischief? In Cat-Tales, Selina uses her celebrity as Catwoman to mount an off-Broadway show and uses that spotlight to call out the tabloids about the lies they tell about Batman, about Catwoman, and what really goes on in Gotham after dark.

It’s not exactly the same, but Anne Hathaway recently appeared on Conan and vented her frustrations with the paparazzi – seriously – in a rap in the style of Lil’ Wayne.

anne-hathaway-catwoman-selina-kyle-rapping-paparazzi-on-conanThat’s… Selina!

That’s my Selina. I don’t know what Messers Nolan, Nolan, and Goyer have written for her, but that woman could play the Selina Kyle of Cat-Tales without bothering to act.

Back when the casting was first announced, Christopher Nolan said when we see the movie in 2112, we will understand why Anne Hathaway and Tom Hardy are perf…

Oh wait, I said three reasons, didn’t I?

Sexy. DC Comics is relaunching their universe today and the writer of their new Catwoman comic apparently used the word “sexy” 40 times in an interview. That shouldn’t surprise anyone outside of the comics world. Catwoman = sexy. Everybody knows that. And let’s face it, what we’ve seen of the zip-up biker chick outfit isn’t. But everything we have seen of Ms Hathaway exudes that confidence and good humor, that energy and vivacity that is the essence of sex appeal. I don’t know about still photos, but seeing her interviews of the past few weeks, I think the lady can be sexy wearing sack cloth.

So, Christopher Nolan said when we see the movie in 2112, we will understand why Anne Hathaway and Tom Hardy are perfect casting as Catwoman and Bane. In the former case, he is 11 months ahead of schedule.

Chris Dee
www.catwoman-cattales.com
cattales.yuku.com
cattales.wikispaces.com

catwoman-selina-kyle-anne-hathaway-princess-little-girls-castles-when-i-grow-up-i-want-to-be

Article first published as Santa, All I Want for Christmas is… Wait, does Barbie come with a latex catsuit? on Blogcritics.

%d bloggers like this: