On February 15th, Marvel released the highly anticipated Black Panther movie, directed by Creed's Ryan Coogler and featuring a star-studded cast including Angela Bassett, Michael B. Jordan, Chadwick Boseman, Lupita Nyong'o . . . the list goes on. Did the movie live up to the hype? Mary and Emily are here to provide their spoiler-filled opinions.
Emily: Let me turn on the Black Panther soundtrack for this. I advise our readers do the same.
Mary: So, like the rest of the world, Black Panther has been on our radar for a while now. The new Marvel film features an all star cast, high budget special effects, and a look at something we haven’t seen before from Marvel: world building (on earth).
The movie follows Prince T’Challa, the successor to the throne of Wakanda, as he takes his place as the Black Panther, the mystical, powerful protector of the nation. However, as he journeys to take down the noted thief and all around crazy person Ulysses Klaue, T’Challa discovers that there’s an even bigger threat to Wakanda’s way of life. Michael B. Jordan.
It's January again, which means it's time to reimagine our lives and expect more from ourselves.
For me, that means considering tidying up my apartment. For real this time. And while I made this resolution on January 1st, it's taken me half the month to move on from thinking about it to developing a plan of attack. Maybe my next move, after fifteen more days of planning my strategy, will be to actually start tidying up. But we'll see. According to Marie Kondo's manga version of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, aptly titled The Life Changing Manga of Tidying Up, I'm right on schedule. So if you're thinking two weeks into the new year is a great time for you to drop your New Years resolutions, think again, because it's time to get into the Konmari method, manga style.
As anyone who has ever heard me talk about my childhood of my favorite books knows, I LOVE science fiction and fantasy. I was raised on superheroes, I run a biweekly Dungeons and Dragons game, and I audited a science fiction graduate seminar. I’ve forced people to read The Southern Reach Trilogy. I’m invested in promoting the work of Octavia Butler. Considering my love of sci fi, I’m always disappointed when stores have lackluster “genre fiction” sections that only cater to pulpy paperback readers and Game of Thrones fans (not that there’s anything wrong with that, but like Ariel, sometimes I want more).
Today Mary and guest blogger Todd Osborne talk about one of their new favorite shows, Runaways, a Hulu original based on the Marvel comic series of the same name.
The show follows a group of friends--Alex, Chase, Karolina, Gert, Molly, and Nico--as they discover that their parents are not what they seem.
As always, this post will be full of spoilers (though lighter ones than usual). Read more under the cut!
If you’re a DC fan like me, then you probably had veiled and desperate hopes for this month’s Justice League—anything to replace last year’s Batman v Superman. And if you’re like me, then you were perhaps pleasantly surprised by the latest film. It maintained the seriousness of the DC comics, as well as the darkness of the threat its main villain carried. And since the threat is darker, the team assembled to fight it is darker. But thanks to Joss Whedon’s influence, we got more comedy in the balance. The overall disappointment with this film was the blatant male gaze that uplifted the macho and the overbearing, and belittled the feminine and the powerful. I will point out things the film did well, but unfortunately, that aspect tainted the majority of the storyline, so much so that it wrote the title of this article itself. Nevertheless, let’s take a look at areas where this film succeeded and failed, starting with the team itself.
Watch out for spoilers after the cut!
I’ve been thinking about teen heroes often this summer.
In addition to the summer blockbuster Spider-Man: Homecoming, I’ve also been playing Masks, a tabletop RPG following a group of teenage superheroes. I would officially declare this the summer of the teen superhero, but really, teen heroes have never gone out of style.
Spider-Man, though always beloved, has a troubling history in film. Let’s reflect back, back on the early 2000s, when Toby Maguire wore the red and blue spandex and James Franco wasn’t really James Franco yet. Lots of people love these movies—my dad included—but to me they lack what makes Spider-Man one of the best heroes: his age.
Part of what makes Spider-Man so enjoyable for all ages is his special brand of teen bravado, his quick wit and lack of respect for the older, often more competent villains he fights. Peter Parker lacks the single focus life many older heroes have. Yes, Batman has to be Bruce Wayne sometimes—and plenty of heroes have secret identities to juggle—but Spider-Man is something different.
This week Mary and guest blogger Bryana Fern share their thoughts on Wonder Woman. Mary tackles her prejudices against the character in general (and boy did she have a few prejudices), while Bryana tackles why the film is so important for women, but also for the superhero genre in general.
We want to hear your thoughts about Wonder Woman, too! Shoot us an email or tweet or find us on Facebook to let us know what you thought of the film and how Wonder Woman has been important to you.
Archie comics have always been an ubiquitous part of every grocery store checkout line, right beside the magazines and newspapers. As a kid, I read these tiny digests voraciously without thinking much of them, but looking back, I think these comics were doing something impressive. They sent kids (the presumed audience) a message that despite class differences, teens of different backgrounds could be friends.* The 2017 CW drama Riverdale takes the world of Archie and dumps a lot of great details from the comics. Yet ultimately, it keeps the spirit of the comics alive, promoting narratives on class and friendship.
Riverdale is a drama that follows Archie Andrews, a small town football star, as he struggles to balance his social life, football practice, and his blossoming music career. Sigh. He’s just so busy. Meanwhile, his best friend Jughead is literally homeless, his childhood sweetheart Betty is dealing with her institutionalized sister, and newcomer Veronica must sort through her feelings about her recently incarcerated father.
Oh, and there’s also a murder.
The show revolves around the murder of Jason Blossom, another local football star, but as the series progresses his murder seems to be less important than the simmering drama surrounding the other Riverdale teens. And oh is there drama. In the first episode, Archie’s love affair with his teacher comes to light, which may be surprising for fans of the more wholesome comic book. The rollercoaster of plot twists skyrocketed from there, but where can they go from here?
Spoilers to follow, after the cut.
About the Blog
The authors of this blog are four women with opinions about pop culture. That's all you really need to know.