Superheroes Suck Pt 1 (Salon) & pt 2 (The Atlantic)— Not content to just enjoy the relative success of last week’s Iron Man movie, Matt Zoller Seitz (a self professed super hero fan) and Lynda Obst (a film producer) have taken superhero movies to task. For as much as I want to disagree with Seitz, I can understand his basic theme– superhero films are made up of great moments– and basically agree with it. I was kind of high on The Dark Knight when it came out a couple of years ago but after repeated viewings of it, I don’t think the movie holds up as well. The opening bank robbery is still fantastic and the sequence about the capture and escape of the Joker is one I can watch all the time but the movie just doesn’t know how to end and how to get there. And that’s the basic problem with a lot of these superhero movies which is odd because they already have the blueprint of how and why the story works.
Obst’s article is just more befuddling and comes off as the rantings of a frustrated producer who can’t get the movies she wants made. Again, I can understand that frustration but, at the same time, the article is almost comical because it’s the same argument that so many people have about Marvel and DC. See, everyone, comics aren’t that different than the rest of mass entertainment. None of them are willing to take any chances and risk giving their audience something that they don’t want. And if you’re going to complain about Hollywood’s (or Marvel’s or DC’s) choices, you probably aren’t their audience.
Superheroes suck bonus: The cover the the upcoming Incognito: Bad Influence via Sean Phillips. I don’t think Ms. Obst is going to be making the film adaptation of this one.
A Kieron Gillen twofer: Kieron Gillen has been busy this week. First up is a Youtube playlist of songs to go along with the excellent Phonogram: The Singles Club. As someone who’s modern musical knowledge ends somewhere around the grunge era, I heartily thank you, Mr. Gillen. I’m listening to Pull Shapes right now as I type.
And if that wasn’t enough, Kieron Gillen has an interesting look at the craft of Garth Ennis and Jacen Burrows Crossed over at his blog. I haven’t read that much Crossed but it’s fascinating to see one writer looking and picking over another’s work like this. I like to see how other people read comics and texts and Gillen gives a fascinating insight into the Ennis/Burrows book and a bit into the way he looks and absorbs stuff as well.
Joe Casey airs his dirty laundry at CBR: So the interview over at CBR this week with Joe Casey a creator’s view of the difference between Marvel and DC, with Casey not sounding too happy with the DC side of things right now. I can think of a number of writers particularly that have left DC under different circumstances– Mark Waid, Greg Rucka, Sean McKeever, Warren Ellis, Casey– but, if nothing else, Marvel has done a pretty good job of holding onto their writing talent pool.
Joe Casey/Comics Reporter bonus: A long Joe Casey interview and a shorter one or two with the Comic Reporter’s Tom Spurgeon.
Wolk and Morrison sitting in a tree: I don’t remember any other interviews between Grant Morrison and Douglas Wolk (who’s done some great writing about Morrison’s work in the past.) This interview at Time’s Techland amounts to little more than a promo piece for this week’s The Return of Batman but it’s still interesting. I would love to see Wolk be able to do an in-depth career spanning interview with Morrison someday.
The art of reviewing by Katherine Dacey and Tom Crippen: I always find critics talking about the art of criticism interesting. Katherine’s article is a something everyone online should print out and just keep sitting beside their keyboard as they type (including probably your’s truly) and Tom’s is a more esoteric piece. “So I start out pretending to know nothing, then I pull in what I know or think I know,” Tom writes. That’s an interesting take on his approach (and he stresses that it’s just his) to writing. Now I’ve got to go and dig out some Comic Journals to take a better look at his writing.
- Warren Ellis’s victory lap? A few thoughts on Avengers: Endless Wartime
- Now Playing @ Sound on Sight–a look at Kieron Gillen’s Journey Into Mystery
- Now @ Panel Patter: Joe Casey and Piotr Kowalski dare you to look away in SEX: THE SUMMER OF HARD
- I know I’ll adore you ‘til eternity- a review of Young Avengers #1
- You meet the funniest people in San Francisco– review of Exiled #1