Category Archives: Marvel

Agents of SHIELD and the Rise of Ghost Rider

We’re still playing catch up from the firehose of news known as San Diego Comic Con. We ran through the Superhero Soup of Marvel on Monday. But that wasn’t Marvel’s only major panel. After all, they also have the entire line on Netflix, including Daredevil, and Jessica Jones, plus the upcoming IronFist, Luke Cage and Punisher series.

And then there’s ABC, which at this point is back down to just Agents of SHIELD, despite the MCU and Disney’s push to force the network to be fruitful and multiply their shows. The truth is, Marvel’s Agent Carter, Marvel’s Most Wanted and the disappeared down the memory hole Marvel’s Damage Control were all victims of Disney oversaturating ABC with properties that weren’t getting off the ground, The failure of The Muppets (which never recovered from those first disastrous weeks) was far too close in alignment to the way Agents of SHIELD originally kicked off, with a full six weeks of marketing bombardment, and then a complete fizzle as those first few episodes failed to live up to the hype.

MARVEL'S AGENT CARTER - “Smoke and Mirrors” - Agent Carter and the SSR learn there’s more than just a pretty face behind Hollywood star Whitney Frost, Peggy’s most dangerous foe yet, on “Marvel’s Agent Carter,” TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 2 (9:00-10:00 p.m. EST) on the ABC Television Network. (ABC/Richard Cartwright) HAYLEY ATWELL

To be fair, the only thing Carter had going for it was Hayley Atwell, and once ABC decided to give her a new vehicle, that was it for the rest of it. For some, the idea of Mockingbird and Hunter getting their own spin-off was a joy, but just as many fans I’ve spoken too seemed perplexed that anyone thought they could hold a series aloft by themselves, or that SHIELD was somehow better off without them. As for Damage Control, that it was even suggested that people might want to watch a show about the janitors who clean up after Iron Man might just sum up everything wrong with the shows that wind up on ABC to begin with.

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Superhero Soup II: Marvel Edition

Marvel closed out Hall H on Saturday evening, the last major movie studio to give a panel. People camped out in the Hall all day in order to be there. And why not? Marvel is on a run that is some what unprecedented in this day and age. With the release of Civil War this past spring Marvel has released thirteen–a baker’s dozen!–of films that all tie back to the same saga, in the span of eight years. There is nothing int he movie verse that even begins to come close. Even Star Wars, with the seven live action and one animated Clone Wars movies have been over a span of thirty years (and barely equal half of marvel’s output.) DC may be good at marketing, but Suicide Squad which hasn’t even come out yet, will only put them at a measly three.

With such a run still dominating at the box office–even their middling movies like Thor 2 and Ant-Man have been hits–Marvel walked in with no less that six movies to promote, five of which are releasing in the seventeen month span between November of this year and March of 2018, starting with the trailer they brought with them, and then distributed, Doctor Strange.

Other than my intense need to replace the soundtrack they have here with Game of Thrones‘ “The Light of the Seven,” this is not a bad trailer. I was worried there for a minute, especially after they fumbled the controversy of casting Tilda Swinton as the Ancient One instead of a person of color. (One might consider Swinton a person of anti-color she’s so pale.) But I think the mindbending aspects of the movie might be able to override it. I’m thinking this might not be a smash hit, but as we saw with Ant-Man, the company no longer needs to have smash hits at Civil War levels to maintain their streak.

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Agents of SHIELD First Season 4 Promo

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No, Ghostrider isn’t coming to AoS this year. That’s the fire chains that we saw “Hellfire” as the hapless Australian James called himself last season.

You know, technically we didn’t see him die at the end of the season last year, did we? Perhaps he’ll be returning as next season’s big bad?

Or is this just a cool image that Agents of SHIELD is using to get us hyped for their appearance at SDCC?

Superhero Soup: Marvel and DC Roundup

Marvel released a bit of a barrage of stuff yesterday from their upcoming slate for Phase III. With Captain America: Civil War now passed, Phase III begins in earnest, with Doctor Strange coming in November, Guardians of the Galaxy II in May of next year, and then the Spiderman movie no one really needs in the summer.

One could argue that Spiderman actually is required, since Doctor Strange at this point is still a nebulous concept surrounded by foolish white washing casting controversy (not to mention Marvel’s tone-deaf answers when questioned on it.) And Guardians, though popular in its own right (perhaps slightly more so than some of the established Avengers), does not as yet seem to connect back to whatever it is that’s happening on earth. So Spiderman functions as a grounding agent in the chaos–albeit one from a franchise that needed less movies and longer breaks, bot yet another stand alone reboot.

Still, even if it is the safety tentpole to soothe the fears of those convinced that only conventional white male superheros sell tickets, it’s not the one with a synopsis yesterday, Those went to Guardians and Strange. Meanwhile, DC is still racing to catch up and perform damage control. More below.

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Agents of SHIELD: Absolution/Ascension

Well begun is half done, and this two-part finale certainly started off with a bang, dropping us into the middle of the SHIELD team stopping Hive and his minions from firing a nuke. And by the first half an hour it looked like SHIELD might have gained the upperhand, capturing Hive and stopping the nuclear launch. But we knew it wouldn’t be that easy. And it starts as a game of pass the cross.

YoYo: This is not about superspeed. This is about your turtle speed.

We knew Hive wouldn’t stay in the gel matrix, and that bringing him to SHIELD HQ was basically beginning a horror movie set on the base. And by the end of the hour that’s exactly where we were. With Daisy on her knees begging to be let back into the Hive collective and everything. It was ugly.

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What wasn’t ugly was the Daisy-Hive fight that followed. Once again, Chloe Bennet’s fighting abilities have matured to greater heights, and her one on one with Brett Dalton, who has also improved by leaps and bounds over the three seasons, which was partly powered and partly hand to hand combat was a highlight of the evening. But with Elena’s cross being passed from character to character, the question was which one would the roulette wheel land on?

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Agent Carter Cancelled, Marvels Most Wanted Passed On

Ok, we all saw this part coming–Agent Carter is no more. The ratings were flat, Atwell was tapped to move to a new ABC show Conviction (which has been picked up for the 2016-17 season.) After all, how many Disney franchise shows with no ratings can ABC be expected to carry? After all, with Hunter and Bobbi off to the Marvel’s Most Wanted spin off…

Oh. Yeah. ABOUT THAT.

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Apparently, ABC’s not doing that either.

March and April, there were reports of casting being picked up, including Fernanda Andrade and Delroy Lindo as Christina Santos and Dominic Fortune respectively. Logos were leaked, pilots were being shot, and everyone acted like this was a great idea. Until it wasn’t.

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Agents of SHIELD: Emancipation

Captain America: Civil War has come, and this week, Agents of SHIELD found themselves dealing with the fall out from the movie’s main plot point of registering “powered people.” Perhaps unsurprisingly, despite being the head of the bureaucratic agency that technically is part of enforcing the new laws, Coulson, who is the biggest Captain America stan there is, sided with Team Cap that the government shouldn’t be registering his “Secret Warriors.”

Talbot: “The president sent me. The Sokovia Accords are the law of the land now. He’s concerned you may have some Undocumented Enhanced Assets working for you.”

it was a nice touch to start out with Coulson mourning Caps’ new fugitive status and reading Peggy Carter’s obit. (And despite the movie series continued refusals to acknowledge the TV shows, it makes a lot of sense that the trickle down from the accords would cover the Inhumans.) But much like the plot of the Captain America movie was a side show distraction from the main event–that is, pitting the superheroes against each other in a fight, General Talbot’s arrival at the base for an inspection and “taking inventory” of Coulson’s powered peeps was a distraction from the main plot, which featured Daisy tricking Lincoln into breaking out and flying to come see her (and be captured by Hive)–only to reveal that it was Daisy who was being tricked. Lincoln didn’t get off that jet to meet Hive. Lash did. (“Rasta Hulk is your husband?” may have been one of the best lines of the evening.)

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Raise you hand if you thought Lash v Hive was endgame for this season? When the fight came a week early, it was a sign that no, the mess would not be so easily cleaned up. A massive disappointment, especially when it became obvious that Lash not only was impervious to Hive’s parasites, but was also a living antidote, curing Daisy by sucking them all out of her. It was all too easy an answer, so the show killed him off, James taking him out with his fire infused chainwhip just as he got Daisy on the QuinJet and they were about to fly back to safety. May’s grieving over his body was a heartbreaker.

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