Two superhero movies were released last weekend. Wonder Woman, which I hear was amazing and I will definitely watch later, and Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie, a movie based on the book series that first got me reading as a child. Since you can’t beat nostalgia, my brothers and I decided to watch our first favourite super hero adapted to the big screen, and boy was it a pleasant surprise. Charming animation, surprisingly great voice work (with Kevin Hart in particular giving a great performance), and one key element that actually elevates it above its source material: Empathy. This movie had a big heart, it reminded me of a time during my childhood when I actively tried to not think about other people’s, especially adult’s, feelings and then got confused when I was forced to confront them. This movie isn’t centred on that dynamic (it’s centred on the importance of friendship and creativity), but it addresses it in a way the original books never did.
Mob Psycho 100 is an anime that satirizes shonen stories (action anime/manga aimed at boys), pulls them apart, and actually uses their tropes as tools for didactic story telling. With Mob, those dumb action tropes don’t have to be just that, they could also be used as examples as to how one should or shouldn’t live their lives. Cocky guys with super powers that think they’re better than everyone are depicted as deeply insecure, supervillains who want to take over the world aren’t fearsome killers, but are actually manchildren that failed to grow up, and those musclebound jocks that spend all day working out aren’t mean bullies, but are instead people worth admiring because of their desire to improve themselves. That’s what Mob Psycho is at its core, it cuts through the superficiality that defines the shonen genre, and actually arrives at the morals of hard work and teamwork naturally and in a surprisingly grounded way considering its a show about psychics.
A big change came to one of the main characters in the live action remake to Disney’s breakthrough animated feature, Beauty and the Beast. No, I’m not just talking about making LeFou gay, I’m also talking about making him “good” too. In the remake to the film, LeFou isn’t the soulless sycophant he is in the original, but rather a confused gay man with a crush on the wrong guy. While this is progress in terms of gay representation, I can’t help but feel like something was loss in the rehabilitation of one of Disney’s most subtly despicable bad guys.
Damn this film. I hate everything about it. The marketing, the plot, and yeah, the fact that it’s so damn manipulative. OK, I’m the first person to call out people for constantly whining about how everything is “fake” these days, and how consumerist society has become since those tend to be trite criticisms about things people don’t really examine, but boy does this movie make a damn good case for those people. It’s so god damned calculated and clearly designed to make money that it managed to anger me, and again, I’m not usually the kind of person who’d whine about that kind of thing. Almost every creative achievement ever was partly motivated by the thought of making some cash, but this movie is so freaking transparent about it. Maybe that’s what bothers me about it so much, that it’s so utterly graceless in what it’s trying to do.
I recently saw Moana, and surprise-surprise, it was great. I’m still torn on whether or not it was better than Frozen, but it was definitely a solid film with very little flaws. The thing is though, I’m not here to write a review on this film, I’m more here to discuss its villains. It had two, and only one of them was really a character in the sense that it had a personality and motivations. Right now I wanna talk Tamatoa, who was wonderfully voiced by Jemaine Clements, and what his role in the film was.
I see a lot of movies over my summers, and I want to make it a habit to write down my thoughts on them all when my summer is over. Well, it’s long after summer and I haven’t written anything in a while, the reason for this is simple: That I’m lazy and unmotivated even when it comes to things I enjoy doing. It’s time for me to turn a new leaf! I’ll start by finally writing this post about my thoughts on these movies, something anyone still reading this definitely cares about.
With the release of Warner Bros’ Suicide Squad , and the marketing focus on a huge part of people’s interest in the film, the Joker and Harley Quinn’s relationship, there’s been a wave of the exact same sentiment repeated ad nauseam on social media, that this relationship is toxic and should not be endorsed on any level. Going on any social media platform and searching the words “Joker and Harley” invites an avalanche of people lecturing no one in particular to “Stop shipping these 2! It’s abusive!” or some variation of “When I see a person who ships those 2 I think they are TERRIBLE and get MAD!”. The phrase “shipping” refers to basically anything having to do with wanting two people to be in a romantic relationship with each other, it usually refers more to potential couples rather than established ones, but it has evolved into being more of a nebulous term for fictional couples (and sometimes even celebrity ones). The Joker and Harley Quinn relationship has become a particular point of interest because it is not a healthy relationship, it is an abusive one between two very dangerous people. The knee jerk reaction becomes outright rejection of it among several circles of the internet, to the point of intolerance of anyone who enjoys watching them together. But it’s in that where people are overlooking what so many people liked about the pair in the first place.
BoJack Horseman‘s third season ended with one impression that was painfully clear to me: BoJack can’t believably maintain the relationships he does any longer. It’ll be hard for him to be buddy-buddy with Todd again after Todd unloaded on his entire life the way he did. He can’t be close to Princess Carolyn again after the way he harshly fired her in her moment of need. It’ll be tough to buy that he’s still keeping the same network of people now that he’s convinced he’s poison to everyone he comes in contact with. There’s also the fact that everyone else he knows is going to be occupied with their own all-consuming plots of their own that don’t connect to BoJack’s story in any way.
Today I’m here to levy serious accusations of plagiarism and thievery at Joss Whedon, David Greenwalt, and company. In the midst of taking a shower, I was struck with a horrifying truth, almost as if I were a tree in the middle of a thunderstorm. This truth is burning away at me right now just as this hypothetical tree would be. The truth of Winifred “Fred” Burkle from Angel being a direct rip-off of the Library Kid from Recess. I mean, it’s so obvious once you think about it, and because the team behind Angel was able to get away with this creative theft for so long, I am as frustrated as I am baffled. How dare they try to pass off Disney’s work as their own? I’m getting ahead of myself here, but hear me out.
Rick and Morty is funny. It’s really a show that can be anything, with characters that can go anywhere, and be in any story, but at its core it is really, really funny. It’s science fiction comedy pushed to its very limit, all fueled by the (probably unhinged) mind of Justin Roiland and tempered by the steady hand and experience of Dan Harmon (the man behind Community). The result is a half hour of insanity, hilarity, darkness, and a surprising amount of heart starring a brilliant and amoral scientist and his painfully average grandson. Even though it borrows and pays homage to so many other pieces of pop-culture history, Rick and Morty is a show like no other, and is currently my favourite one airing on TV. Here are 5 hilarious moments from the show that help illustrate the brilliance of its humour.
*Be warned, there are some “joke spoilers” here*