Unofficial Trilogy… Filmic Comic Book Bookends Edition

(OPENING SIDENOTE: I like the title of this post.)

Today’s Unofficial Trilogy is about the nails in the coffin of comic book film series (or as in one case, a stake in the heart). Spider-Man 3 was saved by a summer reboot, otherwise this would have been an Unofficial Quadrilogy.

Oh, so dark these heroes..

Oh, so dark these heroes… except maybe the last one.

This movie was, um, weird.  It barely featured Wesley Snipes as Blade (was he out of the country evading taxes when this was made?), and the scene where John Michael Higgins interrogates him is laughable.  Gay subtext in a James Bond superhero/vampire  film?  Well I never!

Two words: Brett Ratner (wow, I haven’t bashed on him in a long while).  Two more words: cobbled mess.  Four more words: I’m the Juggernaut, bitch!  Two last words on The Last Stand: whiny Wolverine.

I was really upset with the lack of purpose this one seemed to have.  And critic Chris Gore made a good point about it by stating something like this (I’m poorly paraphrasing):

His parents’ death made Bruce Wayne become Batman, but Rachel Dawes death made him not be Batman?

But then I read this article, and something happened… my opinion kinda sorta changed.  I won’t go into too much detail, but the author basically regards the third film as a contradiction to the second film, and that in turn made me realize TDKR was the answer to the TDK problem that nobody asked.  What I always enjoyed about the first film’s ending was that it agreed with my theory:

If someone figures out how to be a superhero/villain, then someone will figure out how become its opposite.

The Dark Knight answered that question perfectly.  But what question did TDK ask?

Is a lie okay if it’s for the greater good?

TDK was all about bending means to certain ends.  TDKR was about the inevitable collapse of those well-intended lies.  Too bad it just felt shoddy and shitty.

(FYI: The above Batman poster was made by this guy.)

Advertisements

Coinkydink Or Coinkydonk? Haven’t You Saved Me / Attacked Me Before?

When I began working on this post, I honestly thought I’d be hard-pressed to find even five Actors! that starred in multiple comic book film adaptations.  What I found was quite a closed-circuit community of future Comic Con mainstays.  I’ve opted to showcase the plethora of Actors! that have played in three (!) or more characters featured in paneled ink.  The double-dippers are all after the jump.

  • Chris Evans

Johnny Storm - Lucas Lee - Jensen - Captain America

Clearly the king, Chris Evans has been in fantastic four comic adaptations: Fantastic Four, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, The Losers, and Captain America: The First Avenger.

  • Ryan Reynolds

Hannibal King - Deadpool - Green Lantern

As Hannibal King, Ryan Reynolds did not belong in Blade: Trinity, even though King was in the Blade comic books.  It’s just that Blade: Trinity didn’t need to be.  Strike two came in the form of Deadpool in X-Men Origins: Wolverine.  Wade Wilson, the merc with the mouth, without a mouth?!  And though the studios were underwhelmed by Green Lantern’s opening weekend box office performance, I didn’t think it was too bad.  I guess you could say that it’s his first superhero film without a colon that didn’t suck ass.

  • Michael Fassbender

Stelios - Burke - Magneto

Surprise, surprise, surprise.  I didn’t realize Michael Fassbender wasn’t a comic book rookie in X-Men: First Class.  He was also in 300 and Jonah Hex.  Also, he was the guy that held up the wrong fingers in that underground bar in Inglourious Basterds.  That scene still beats Magneto facing retired Nazis, but it’s not far off.

  • Scarlett Johansson

Rebecca - Silken Floss - Black Widow

It’s about time to get a lady on the list, and who better than the former Mrs. Reynolds.  Prior to being in Iron Man 2, she was in Ghost World and The Spirit.  Yes, both of those were comics.

  • Bruce Willis

John Hartigan - Tom Greer - Frank Moses

He’s played an aging cop in Sin City, a FBI agent in Surrogates, and a retired CIA agent in RED.  I dare you to call him old.

  • Morgan Freeman

Lucius Fox - Sloan - Joe

Batman Begins and The Dark Knight are fantastic, and he played his part well (everything after God is a cinch).  I probably shouldn’t have included Sloan, his character in Wanted, because he wasn’t in the comic book, but eh.  Oh yeah… he was also in RED.

  • John Malkovich

Professor Sandiford - Quentin Turnbull - Marvin Boggs

You probably didn’t see Art School Confidential (neither did I), but it was a graphic novel.  Actually, you probably didn’t see Jonah Hex either.  RED, you probably seen.  And not only on this list twice before.

  • Tommy Lee Jones

Two-Face - Agent K - Colonel Chester Phillips

I tried to forget Batman Forever, but as the title suggests, it’s forever in my head.  Maybe I need one of those neuralizers, like in Men in Black 1 & 2, or perhaps some super-soldier serum, like in Captain America: The First Avenger.

  • Michael Clarke Duncan

The Kingpin - Manute - Kilowog

Daredevil, Sin City, and Green Mile Lantern comprise Duncan’s resume.  People complained about him playing The Kingpin before Daredevil came out; people complained about Daredevil after it came out.

  • Brandon Routh

Superman - Todd Ingram - Dylan Dog

I thought Routh did a great job filling in Christopher Reeves’ iconic red boots, which sounds weird to say, but he did.  He was a good choice.  Too bad Superman Returns’ director, Bryan Singer, made some other strange decisions like giving Supes a kid and having him throw a Kryptonite island into space.  So there won’t be a sequel to that version, but at least he wasn’t typecast.  He was great as super-vegan Todd Ingram in Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, and even though Dylan Dog: Dead of Night was an Italian comic book, I still count it.

  • Jeffrey Dean Morgan

The Comedian - Clay - Jeb Turnbull

You might not know Morgan by name, but you likely know him by gravelly voice (or when I’ve written about him before).  He played a great psychotic hero in Watchmen, the cool as a cucumber leader in The Losers, and based upon the limited images online, a very small role (yup, he dies) in Jonah Hex, which again, I haven’t seen.

  • Jaime King

Jade - Wendy - Lorelei Rox

The only other lady on the triples list, King could be King Chris Evans’ queen because she technically played two characters in one movie.  She was Jade in Bulletproof Monk, twins Goldie and Wendy in Sin City, and Lorelei Rox in The Spirit.

This concludes this portion of the show, although I should hand out two special awards.

The Un-S.H.I.E.L.D.ed Eye Award goes to:

Colonel Nick Fury

You see this guy everywhere… well, at least in the Marvel Studio produced films.  He’s been in Iron Man 1 & 2, The Incredible Hulk, and Thor.  He’s somehow in Captain America: The First Avenger, and he will definitely be in The Avengers next summer.  He’s signed on to be in at least nine movies, giving him a decent list, but the patch catch is this: he’s always Nick Fury.  But I almost forgot… he was also in The Spirit as this guy that loves eight of everything:

The Octopus

(SIDENOTE: Clark Gregg’s Agent Coulson appears in all the Marvel films too, but alas, he is not in any comic books.)

The Hitchcock Walk-On Award goes to:

  • Stan Lee

(Who else would it have been?)

Twenty-two more double-dippers can be found by clicking here —->

Read More