Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Geek Talk

Hey, hope everyone had a good holiday weekend. Mine was light and breezy, filled with culinary delights. But I want to talk about one thing I did over the weekend. Lisa had some free movie passes and we had some free time, so before going shopping we decided to see Revenge of the Sith.

I'll surprise very few people by informing you that it was a bad film. The dialogue was atrocious, the acting unbelievable (in a bad way), the story convoluted, and deficient in all respects other than as a showreel for ILM.

I thought about doing my Geek Duty and doing a full-scale review of the movie and why I think it was even worse than Episode 2, but it occurred to me that my main problems with it mirrored my problems with a lot of the mainstream superhero work going on these days. The movie fails because, like these comics, it takes a concept inherently meant to be fun and silly and takes it SERIOUSLY with all capitals. Revenge of the Sith was a summer blockbuster action film that dealt a whole lot with back-room dealings and political machinations.

Jesus Christ, are you kidding me? Is there someone out there that watches big dumb space opera films to get insight into politics? Is there someone wanting to see Star Wars just to find out how exactly the Republic became The Empire? Fuck, no! People watch these things to see guys have space-ship battles and fight with fucking laser swords! OK, Anakin became Darth Vader because he fell in love and worried too much about her. That's worth a scene, I'll give you that. But where are the awesome things happening? Episodes 1 and 2, though still awful movies, each had at least one moment where a nerd could go "YEAH!" and just enjoy the silly awesomeness of it. But by Episode 3, the laser sword fight wad had been blown, so there was nothiing exciting there. The space dogfights were short and almost non-existent. And, aside from an occasional "witticism" from poor, lost Ewan as Obi-Wan, the only character with any charm was the almost-naked-blue chick, and her charm rests solely in the fact that she's hot!

Meanwhile, most of the big superhero books focus on similarly boring things. Politics, grand machinations and manipulations . . .it's the stuff of soap operas. Superhero comics have always had an element of soap to them, but they also had guys in costumes going out and doing crazy shit like discovering new worlds or battling living poems or something. Now all they do is talk about their goddam feelings like a bunch of pussies.

The point is, when your foundation is inherently silly, don't take yourself too seriously. Otherwise you get Hal Jordan and Batman having a bitch-off-not-talking-to-each-other tiff and scene upon scene of Jedis talking about doing stuff. When you work in a genre, find your strength first. Play around with it, take it seriously when you need to, but remember the limits. Unless you're Alan Moore or Dan Clowes, you're probably not writer enough to go contrary to the basic concept you're working with.

4 Love Letters:

Blogger Christopher Burton said...

Aw, c'mon. You had to at least like Artoo setting those droids on fire. That was brilliant.

9:50 PM

Blogger Joe Rice said...

That part wasn't awful, Chris.

The end.

9:37 PM

Anonymous red_ricky said...

The point is, when your foundation is inherently silly, don't take yourself too seriously.

That's what I've been saying all along!!!

FINALLY!!! I'm not alone! Somebody with some common sense!

Now wave your arms in the air like you don't care! And repeat after me...

Yeah baby! We are bringing this baby back to the Top 40!

You know the lyrics!

Here we go, here we go...

Celebrate the Love! And...

"Yub nub, eee chop yub nub,

toe meet toe pee chee keene,

g'noop dock fling oh ah.

Yah wah, eee chop yah wah..."

All the Exoks on the East Side say: Hey Yoooo!!!

9:22 AM

Blogger nope said...


I'm sorry for being intrusive in to your blog. But I am Melissa and I am a mother of two that is just trying to get out of an incredible financial debt. See my hubby is away in Iraq trying to protect this great country that we live in, and I am at home with our two kids telling bill collectors please be patiant. When my husband returns from war we will beable to catch up on our payments. We have already had are 2001 Ford repossessed from the bank, and are now down to a 83 buick that is rusted from front to back and the heater don't work, and tire tax is due in November.

I'm not asking for your pitty because we got our ownselfs into this mess but we would love you and thank you in our prayers if you would just keep this link on your blog for others to view.

God Bless You.

Melissa K. W.
To see my family view this page. My Family

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2:07 AM


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