Monthly Archives: August 2016

The Killing Joke

killingcoverThere a few Batman comics as iconic as Alan Moore and Brian Bollands’ Killing Joke. This is the comic where the Joker got a real story.  One that would stick out from the many others that he got, and that somehow always had some of its elements borrowed for those other origin stories. Killing Joke shows the Clown Prince of crime at his most brutal and his most cunning.  It shows us the end of Batgirl and the origin of Oracle.  It shows us Batman laughing out loud.  Needless to say, this is my favourite Batman comic.
Scratch that: it’s my favourite comic. Period.

So when Warner Animation announced its intent to translate the comic into an animated movie, my feelings were mixed.  I was excited at seeing the comic come alive, yet wary of them screwing up a classic.  Turns out, both feelings were right.

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Let’s first get my gripes off my chest.  The one major thing that struck a wrong chord was the quality of the animation. Or lack thereof.  Sure, it was okay, but just okay doesn’t really do Bolland’s art justice.  The comic is a masterpiece. Its translation to the big screen is stuck on mediocre. Watchable and enjoyable, but nowhere near as nice as Bolland.killing3

Then there’s the first part of the movie.  A prologue, as told from Batgirl’s perspective. While it’s a nice little short story on its own, it feels forced and tacked on to the big story, leading away attention from the main theme: the Joker.

 

And boy, what a Joker we get!  Mark Hamill reprises the role beautifully.  As does Kevin Conroy. Batman never sounded as grim opposite Joker’s maniacal cackling.

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So should you get The Killing Joke?  I think you should.  But get the graphic novel first, and watch the movie afterwards.  Because,while not as great as the original, it’s still pretty awesome.

Jan

Tusken Tuesday : Baby Steps

Having a kid brings about some big changes in one’s life. This is true, no matter how clichéd it might sound.  When our son was born, everything changed.

“You’ll have to drop all your hobbies!” people said. “You’ll stop collecting that Star Wars junk!” others claimed.  This is not true.  Since our son has been born, I’ve been adding babythemed stuff to the collection. Baby Star Wars tshirts he has grown out of. And, more recently, this little gem:FB_IMG_1469184690279

Having a kid doesn’t mean you’ll automatically cease collecting. It’ll just alter your focus.

Jan

Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice

bvscRemember this?

Yeah, me too.  At first I was appaled by Affleck donning the batsuit, but when I saw that picture I thought: “hey, maybe this won’t be so bad after all.”

I eagerly awaited the movie’s release.  I ate up every little tidbit of information that leaked from that set. I read reviews. Bad ones. People calling this a crapfest. People calling for Zack Snyder’s head, or at the very least, his removal from any and all DC licenses, ever. So I went in fearing the worst…

Turns out people on the internet like to make a big deal out of their favourite things.  Who knew? I actually enjoyed the movie. Sure, it took a while to get where it was going, and sure, there are some minor gripes, but a crapfest?  Surely sir, you have watched a different movie than I just did.

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For this one was filled with spectacular fights, cool effects, and general awesomeness. I just watched a moving comic book and by golly, I sat wide-eyed in front of the TVscreen. How cool was Affleck as Batman? That voice modulation, that batmobile, that suit, those moves!  Wow!  And Cavill as Superman?  I was never a huge fan of the redcape, but I might just have to adjust my view of the man of Krypton after this. And all those cameo’s!  Aquaman, Cyborg, the Flash, Wonder Woman…  I love how their snippets set up the stage for the future Justice League movie.

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And let’s not forget Eisenberg as Lex Luthor.  What a performance! Eisenberg plays the part brilliantly.  Never have I seen such a believeable comic book villain. Never over the top, with just the right amount of camp.

I get why people were angry, I really do.  Batman using guns? Luthor with long hair? Snyder dared change their rusted-shut view of their heroes, and he deserved to pay. I get that sentiment. But these are new times, and new times need a new Batman.  Remember the nineties?  Batfans back then were miffed about Burton’s Batman blowing up a clown too. And look were those movies are now: classics.

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After three hours of absolute geek-heaven (I watched the extended cut), I’m already planning to watch the theatrical version next. See what got cut and amp myself up for the Suicide Squad flick.  Times have never been more exciting for Batfans!