The GOL feeds have been pretty silent this week. There has been a lot going on in the lives of the various hosts. From Elvis week to back to school to just good ole family time with baby neices and nephews.
One thing that no show yet has allowed me is the opportunity to process what I saw over the weekend – Fantastic Four…or Fant4stic.
It’s an odd thing to walk in to a movie that has such venom being spewed at it by the masses online. In fact, the director even came out with his defenses up claiming that a year ago he had a great movie that we’ll never get to see. This, of course, points to a studio who butchered his original vision to make the movie “better.” While I’m sure that’s partially true, this movie tells a much deeper tale of what can go wrong when trying to make a super hero film.
Over the past few days I’ve come to a couple of conclusions:
1. This movie is getting treated worse than it deserves. (Elektra was much worse than this movie.)
2. We’ve come a long way as movie-goers and geeks as it pertains to what we will accept from our superhero movies.
When I consider where we’ve come since the days of Batman and Robin and even Bryan Singer’s first X-Men, I realize we are in a completely different age of superhero movies than ever…and it all started in 2008. IRON MAN ushered in an era that caused us all to think differently about how these characters can be handled on the silver screen. For geeks like me, we came to expect studios to realize that the look and feel of the character on screen doesn’t have to be that far removed from what we had on the page. It’s taken other studios a little while longer to understand that the success of the Marvel Cinematic Universe lay not in the connected universe but in the rule set forth in IRON MAN – be true to the source material rather than attempting to be smarter than it. This followed through the other MCU movies even if fans didn’t get what we THOUGHT we wanted.
For example, the one villain that fans thought we should get to see in an Iron Man movie, The Mandarin, never really came to pass. Instead we got Iron Monger, a Whiplash character that wasn’t quite what we were given in the pages of the comics, and A.I.M. In holding back, Marvel created demand for an arch nemesis that we may never see in the cinemas while simultaneously introducing the possibility of taking second tier villains and making them matter to a degree.
On the next Geek Out Loud I plan on expounding on these thoughts and the merits of holding back Doctor Doom if another Fantastic Four movie is ever attempted. Currently, the buzz is that Fox wants to move forward with the property jumping off what has been set up in the first film. I doubt we’ll ever see the cooperation between Fox and Marvel Studios that we are currently seeing with Sony and Marvel, and I find that sad, because my imagination only gets fired up thinking about what having The Silver Surfer and Galactus could mean in the MCU as we know it. I would love to see The Thing and The Hulk slug it out for an hour on the movie screen. So, if for no other reason than being convinced Marvel Studios could get it right, I’m disappointed that Fox still has the cinematic rights to the Fantastic Four franchise and I hope I get to see the day the rights revert back to Marvel or Fox learns to work with Marvel. Until then, I will continue to feed the addiction and make my way to the cinemas to see these heroes I loved as a kid come to life…even if I walk out feeling…I’m still not sure what I’m feeling.