Archives For Whedon

spiderman thinks about cash

As I’m sure you’ve heard, Sony finally decided to split custody of Spider-Man, and it looks like he’ll be visiting mom on some very important weekends in the future. After a few personal conversations, I’ve come to the conclusion that most people are pretty excited. I feel that.

A few people are worried, though. Or maybe tired is a better word. News of another “Spider-Man reboot” induces cringing for these peeps, and this is my response to them. There are certain detractors that I’m not going to convince, and to those people I say that perhaps the next decade of big-budget movies should be something that they avoid, because franchising and multi-part plots aren’t going away. That’s great news, though!

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Feminism and Avengers

Ashley Walton —  May 16, 2012 — 1 Comment

I’ve now seen Avengers a couple of times, but I hadn’t written a post because I didn’t know what I could say that hadn’t already been said. It was awesome, everything I hoped it would be. Whedon stood tall and rose to all my expectations. The arrangement of strong characters was well-balanced and well-written, each contributing a unique personality to the whole. Roger Ebert is an idiot. Moviefone is sexist. The end.

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At this point, it’s no secret that I’m a sucker for horror movies, but this one takes the cake. This is one of the funnest horror movies I’ve ever seen (yes, I might even like it more than Jennifer’s Body, which is a statement I haven’t yet uttered about a horror film until now). Not only was The Cabin in the Woods a celebration of all things horror, it was clever, shocking, and different. It gushed (pun intended?) with originality, a rarity in contemporary horror.

In the era of the postmodern smarty-pants viewer, well versed in genre constructions, we are in the age of meta-horror. It seems that every film since Scream has tried to point out its own constructedness, paying homage to the horror genre and referencing the horror conventions that have come before. The Cabin in the Woods (we’re talking the 2012 version here, of course) forces this agenda to a new level, pushing the purpose, commentary, and conversation of contemporary horror. This isn’t self-referentiality for the sake of street cred– this is self-referentiality that propels itself and the genre to something new, one of the markers of a great work.

And in case you were wondering, yes Joss Whedon is an incredibly talented writer who has grown a lot since Buffy and Angel. Moments of serious horror and gore are undercut with witty and thought-provoking humor that fits into a story that pushes its premise to its limits. I can’t wait to see what this guy does with The Avengers. To all you nervous, Whedon nay-sayers who worried if he’d be able to shine on the silver screen, I just want to give you an inelegant and irritating (but well deserved) “I told ya so.”

Comic-Con Sunday

Ashley Walton —  July 26, 2010 — 3 Comments

My last day at geek mecca. However, this isn’t the end of my Comic-Con blog posts, because I have lots of stuff to fill in.

The cast of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia unveiled their premiere for next season. It’s entitled, “Who got Dee pregnant?” and needless to say, it’s hilarious. Kaitlin Olson, the actress who plays Sweet Dee, actually showed up to Comic-Con with a bun in the oven. The main characters also had Cricket on stage with them and assured us that the gang is not through torturing poor Cricket.
This was one of the highlights of my day– these two girls “dressed up” like Hall H victims. In case you haven’t heard, on Saturday, two guys got into a scuffle over a seat in Hall H and one guy stabbed the other in the eye with a pen. I was there, and I can tell you, the seat wasn’t even good.
The final hurrah of Comic-Con was the screening of the Buffy episode “Once More With Feeling,” which is a sing-along with a Rocky Horror vibe to it. I yelled “Shut up, Dawn!” so many times that I lost my voice. We also yelled, “Bite me!” whenever Spike appeared on screen and “Liar!” when Buffy tells Spike she’s never going to be with him and when Xander tells Anya he’ll never leave her. If that wasn’t enough fun, we were given clever traffic tickets (which I’ll post later) and little monster finger puppets (so we could say, “Grrr! Arrrgh!” during the closing credits).

So I’ve been a bad girl, and I didn’t update my blog yesterday, which means I’m bursting to get tons of cool stuff off my chest. The last two days have been insane. Let’s start with what blew my mind the most.

THE ENTIRE AVENGERS CAST WAS REVEALED! Not only was the cast revealed, but everyone showed up, along with the film’s writer/director Joss Whedon. I kid you not, I had geek chills. I lost my voice screaming. So the big reveal everyone’s been waiting for: The Hulk will be played by Mark Ruffalo. And surprise! Jeremy Renner will play Hawkeye.
I have the highest hopes for The Avengers movie. It would be difficult for most writers and directors to juggle so many strong characters and actors at one time, but Whedon has experience doing exactly that with Firefly and Serenity. And I can’t wait for him to write some snarky lines for Tony Stark (snarky wit is another of Whedon’s specialties). I think he’s going to blow people away.
The highlight of the Green Lantern panel, believe it or not, was not the film footage (which was short and didn’t show much– it didn’t even show the suit). In fact, the highlight was when a young fan asked Reynolds to recite the Green Lantern oath, which he had refused to do on many other  occasions. You could see the kid brighten up and renew his love for comic book heroes as Reynolds said the lines in his best heroic voice.
Unlike the Green Lantern panel, the Thor panel showed a lot of polished footage. Visually, it looks great. The color palette, set design, and other-world feel was done well. Plus, I’m a sucker for Natalie Portman. What geek isn’t?
The Captain America footage was more like a teaser. It’s definitely going to be his origin story, set during WW II. What we saw, clearly showed what Marvel has already hinted at– that they’re carefully interweaving all their different characters into one universe, which isn’t an easy thing to do. The stories overlap slightly, and all the characters exist on the same plane, culminating in the big movie everyone’s waiting for– the Avengers. Pretty effing cool.
As a side note, there was a stabbing in Hall H today while I was there. It was pretty crazy. I guess a fan got into a scuffle and stabbed someone in the eye over a seat. The whole thing was so unexpected. Nothing like that has ever happened at Comic-Con. Geeks are such a peaceful people.
So don’t hate me, but this post isn’t a movie review. It’s about Joss Whedon and Morgan Spurlock’s upcoming documentary “Comic-Con Episode Four: A Fan’s Hope.” I think the title’s pretty self-explanatory.
They posted several calls to action, asking geeks to write them for a chance to be in the documentary. So I did. And I just got an email from the casting director and we’re supposed to have a phone interview this week, so wish me luck!
Below is my little blurb I submitted, explaining my undying love for Comic-Con.
 A little about myself
Name: Ashley Walton
Age: 23
Location: Spanish Fork, Utah
Occupation: Copywriter
Favorite ComicCon Memory: Dancing with Tim and Eric at the 2008 Adult Swim Party
Hobbies: Going to concerts, reading graphic novels, throwing LAN parties, playing Buffy on Xbox, watching Firefly for the fifth time, playing Star Wars monopoly, collecting DVDs, and watching every horror movie I can get my hands on.
Somewhere around April, I begin to feel giddy anticipation for the end of July. My first time at ComicCon, I was fourteen, and the reasons I loved it then are the same reasons I love it now— and it’s not just the super cool merchandise like zombie teddy bears and obscure T-shirts (although I do love my Fruity Oaty Bar tee). It happens to be the camaraderie, that and the sheer absurdity and whimsicalness of it all.
Every year I make the pilgrimage to geek Mecca with my brother. Together we battle lines snaking all the way to the ocean to enjoy panels featuring the pantheon of geek gods and watch 2-minute peeks of movies that will come out a year later. We accumulate geek points by playing our private game “Name That Obscure Cos-Play Character” and I knock his socks off with my vast knowledge of Hoth and Miyazaki. We wake up at unholy hours to beat the crowds and snag a coveted parking space beneath the convention center. We have long conversations about comic book writing and argue over the merit of The Big Bang Theory. We trek all over the gas lamp district of San Diego and find ourselves in sidewalk cafes or grocery stores inhabited by superheroes and steampunk gents. And there’s something really beautiful about the whole thing.
I run around trying to soak up everything I can. I don’t have just one obsession—I love it all. After deciding which day to wear my Beatrix Kiddo track suit and which day to wear my Jayne Cobb hat, I walk the immense distributer floor several times, yes, even completing vendor scavenger hunts to win Emily the Strange souvenirs and running through the crowds to be the first to snatch tickets to exclusive movie screenings, and of course, collecting the daily Warner Brothers’ bag to hold all my schwag. I test out the video games, peruse the artist’s corner, get snapshots with actors (and people with awesome costumes), have comics signed by writers, and wait in insanely long lines for the good stuff in Hall H (although braving the Twilight fans is the scariest thing at ComicCon).
I love ComicCon. Comic Con is a gathering of 150 thousand of my peeps. It’s amazing to find yourself in this realm where everyone cares about the same things you do, everyone gets your obscure references and jokes, everyone is comfortable with each other. There’s an unspoken code of acceptance. The guy who spends his nights barricaded in comic book stores playing Magic the Gathering fits in here. The insomniac who’s obsessed with beating Mass Effect 2 while buzzed on seven energy drinks fits in here. The fanatic who insists on always wearing their Star Trek turtle neck under their clothes fits in here. The casual blogger who hasn’t read a single comic book, but loves movies fits in here. Everyone has a neat little space. No one is turned away (well, unless you didn’t grab your ticket far enough in advance—then you’re screwed).
ComicCon is time set apart to bond with my fellow man, including my best friend, my brother. It’s a consecrated time of peace and unity, when everything feels right. It’s a time to put the world aside, and connect with your inner-kid. In my case, it’s a time when my entire family (all of us grown with jobs across the nation) takes a vacation and meets up in San Diego, because no one wants to miss out on the fun.