The auteur of Black Widow is Scarlett Johansson
May 6, 2015 12:20 PM   Subscribe

The Black Widow Conundrum - how Black Widow being the most popular female superhero of the decade is both exciting and disappointing. Also Ike Perlmutter thinks female-led films bomb, The Mary Sue discusses Joss Whedon leaving Twitter.
posted by Artw (132 comments total) 15 users marked this as a favorite
 
(Links and the following discussion likely include some mild spoilers for Avengers: Age of Ultron, but let's face it you've probably run into everyone's Internet Hot Take on it already. )
posted by Artw at 12:24 PM on May 6, 2015


I've been reading through these myself and think it's an interesting story. I also really enjoyed the article from io9 on the topic.
posted by Carillon at 12:28 PM on May 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


That Ike Perlmutter guy can eat a .... duck. Give me my Black Widow movie !!!!
posted by Pendragon at 12:29 PM on May 6, 2015


Yeah, I would still go with Katniss despite the definition the article uses. No reason a superhero has to come from a comic.
posted by Drinky Die at 12:32 PM on May 6, 2015 [4 favorites]


Perlmutter always sounded like a jackass before, this was just reinforcement.

(Also, somebody tell Jeremy Renner to just... stop talking. Please. For everybody's sake.)
posted by kmz at 12:32 PM on May 6, 2015 [30 favorites]


Black Widow in the first Avengers movie is the distilled end product of decades of comics continuity, most of which you can never show in the movies anymore tied as it is with the Cold War and dreary femme fatale spy cliches, but which ultimately let to Natasha as the ultimate professional. Not quite a superheroine, but somebody who was forced into that game due to circumstances and determined to play her role as best as she can.

But really, she's the person SHIELD calls when they have a serious problem that needs to be solved quickly and discretely. That was what you saw in the first movie too, even in that cliched "female spy pretends to be helpless to get info" scene at the start: of all the heroes, she was the one with a game plan from the start, having it together even more than Cap (who of course is slightly less experienced than in the real Marvel Universe).

And Black Widow is on a par with Captain America, with the Black Panther, as the greatest human level athlete/fighter in the world; everybody who can beat her has to have some sort of superpowers other than being at peak human condition.

You could do so many great Widow movies, especially if you have Hawkeye there to play second banana or perhaps the Falcon. Such a pity she doesn't get the chance.
posted by MartinWisse at 12:36 PM on May 6, 2015 [16 favorites]


But what I really want is my Colleen Wing/Misty Knight Daughters of the Dragon 'xploitation television series. With cameos by a certain Luke Cage and Danny Rand, natch.
posted by MartinWisse at 12:38 PM on May 6, 2015 [7 favorites]


Has it been confirmed that MCU Black Widow has red room treatment (which is the Soviet version of the Super Soldier serum). It seems like the Red Room agent that Agent Carter fought was an enhanced metahuman so it would make sense if MCU Widow is metahuman.

I'm going to go out on a limb and suggest that Erskine's super soldier formula borrows an origin from Wakanda's Black Panther serum so BP is quite likely to be superhuman as well.
posted by vuron at 12:41 PM on May 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


Has it been confirmed that MCU Black Widow has red room treatment

Yes, in Avengers: AoU.
posted by axiom at 12:42 PM on May 6, 2015 [3 favorites]


There really isn't a Black Widow conundrum. Scarlett Johansson is great in the role and could totally carry a solo BW movie. It'll probably do just ok domestically, but rake in the dollars overseas. Whatever, the money will still spend.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:44 PM on May 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


I'm not convinced it would only do OK domestically. It may not do Iron Man level box office but then again nothing does.
posted by Justinian at 12:48 PM on May 6, 2015


Honestly a Black Widow movie has always seemed like such a no-duh kinda thing. I really thought that even old sexist jackasses like Perlmutter would see the profit potential overriding their biases. But no, they really are just that damn stubborn.
posted by kmz at 12:48 PM on May 6, 2015




I don't even want to get into whether AoU Black Widow was somehow bad feminism or an inconsistent take on the character or what. I've read so many words about it since watching the movie that it's only serving to try to tell me I shouldn't have enjoyed the movie, or something.

I want a Black Widow movie where we find out what happened in Budapest, see how she got that red ink in her ledger, and see the turning point where she became an Avenger. (Not as much as I want to see a Captain Marvel movie... but far more than I want to see Ant-Man, or Civil War, or the potential Planet Hulk.)
posted by Foosnark at 12:51 PM on May 6, 2015 [7 favorites]


James Gunn on Whedon
posted by cjorgensen at 12:52 PM on May 6, 2015 [4 favorites]


I'm not convinced it would only do OK domestically.

I was looking at the returns for Salt and Lucy, where most of their profit came from outside of America. It's nutty that Marvel isn't begging SJ to do a solo movie after Lucy. 40M production budget and 450M total worldwide is just mad profit.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:52 PM on May 6, 2015 [7 favorites]


I'd call Buffy a comic-book superhero...

I heard a line, and I apologize for the terrible paraphrasing and inability to remember the source (google is failing me). But it was one of the Greek guys (Plato?) who said something like "women can't be tragic figures because the aren't high enough to fall." Which I feel like is still the underlying bias against female superheroes. Interesting superheroes need to be flawed and so many creators seem to be unable (unwilling?) to create women who are strong and rounded enough to be flawed. Which is one of the things I liked about Buffy. She was flawed and sometimes those flaws got her in to trouble. And sometimes she sacrificed herself for the greater good.

And why couldn't we have Black Widow doing those same things? Purely because of a lack of imagination.

On aside, Electra and Catwoman shouldn't be used to prop up the argument that female led superhero movies can't sell. Those movies where never given a CHANCE to succeed... they were just all-the-way-through terrible.
posted by ghostiger at 12:54 PM on May 6, 2015 [5 favorites]


At this moment, I am starting to think Patton Oswald is closer to a GamerGate troll than a stand up comic.
posted by maxsparber at 12:55 PM on May 6, 2015 [10 favorites]


It's nutty that Marvel isn't begging SJ to do a solo movie after Lucy. 40M production budget and 450M total worldwide is just mad profit.

Took the words out of my mouth. The movie was dumb as hell, but it proved that there is indeed a hearty appetite out there for ScarJo doing superheroic things.
posted by Strange Interlude at 12:58 PM on May 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


A friend linked me to a great article about Black Widow's recent "slut-shaming" from Playboy, of all places (Link NSFW, obviously). I really did read it for the article!
posted by PearlRose at 1:00 PM on May 6, 2015


40M production budget and 450M total worldwide is just mad profit.

That's not Hollywood accounting though. They don't really focus on return on investment. They focus on the return.

Blair Witch cost 13M to 30M million to make and returned like another 100M back. (I forget the actual numbers). Where a 200M blockbuster might only return the same as was put in. So you would think they would make more of the first, but they don't. Everyone wants the big score and they are willing to put the money in to get it. That's how you get Avengers in the first place.

I want a Black Widow movie where we find out what happened in Budapest...

Don't we get to find out what happened in Budapest on Agents of SHIELD?

Personally, I would love a TV series revolving around BW. Do it on Netflix like Daredevil or ABC like Agent Carter. Movies are great for ensemble casts, but I like how a series lets you develop the character.
posted by cjorgensen at 1:01 PM on May 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


patton oswalt did tweet that he was wrong (before making sure to get another dig in. he keeps tripping over this same sort of thing though and i hope some of his self reflection he gives us a front row seat for can one day keep him from repeating it anew.
posted by nadawi at 1:02 PM on May 6, 2015 [3 favorites]


The Catwoman movie was so perfectly done! And the only reason people didn't go see it was because it had a woman star. (Or, maybe the problem is that Hollywood writes shitty movies for women).
Tomb Raider did well, by the way.
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 1:02 PM on May 6, 2015


I think it's kind of funny that male comic-book and movie fans can get very upset and disappointed by a movie, and can lash out online, and are responded to with amusement and condescension (or outright agreement - is there anyone here who will stand up for George Lucas?). But if women fans get disappointed and lash out, suddenly everyone wants to make a federal case about it. The "progressive tea party" FFS? Why is politics getting dragged in to this?
posted by muddgirl at 1:03 PM on May 6, 2015 [23 favorites]


So I'm not really a comic-book super-nerd but did Black Widow get all that much ink pre-MCU or was she one of a seemingly innumerable also-rans in The Avengers? Johansson is great and seems like she can do no wrong but I really have no idea if the character has much going for her, compared to Iron Man and Thor both of which got tons and tons of comics and spin-offs back in the day.

(although, yes, that probably proves nothing because it's not like commercial comic book sales are proof of the merits of the character because comic buyers are a pretty biased bunch)
posted by GuyZero at 1:06 PM on May 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


He has to go all the way back to Supergirl to find enough examples of female led movies that bombed?
posted by octothorpe at 1:09 PM on May 6, 2015 [3 favorites]


a weird thing is the leap from upset fans who skew female to militant feminists. i've gone through a few of the lists of OMG THREATS against joss and if you take out the "fuck you!"s (in all their colorful language), there is one or two "i hope you die" types (always wrong and gross no matter who does it) and a small group of "you're gonna catch these hands!" - the latter two groups, for every single one i clicked on, it seemed to be a jr. high or high school student who cared a lot more about pop culture/mass media entertainment than any sort of politics. i didn't see any that i would describe as strong feminist.

and yet - the entire (come to find out entirely made up) kerfuffle had a foundation of "angry feminists are dangerous!" which - i mean, it's just not what happened at any step.
posted by nadawi at 1:10 PM on May 6, 2015 [18 favorites]


I've generally enjoyed Patton Oswald's comedy, but dude, every MRA on my Facebook friends list was re-sharing how "radical feminists" forced Whedon to quit Twitter. Even when I've replied today with the Buzzfeed article where he says he did not quit Twitter for that reason, they've double down with "WELL THAT'S WHAT HE HAS TO SAY." Maddening.
posted by Joey Michaels at 1:11 PM on May 6, 2015 [10 favorites]


yeah, KiA dudes have explicitly linked joss's comments about why he quit twitter with battered women's statements about doorknobs. it's really gross.
posted by nadawi at 1:13 PM on May 6, 2015 [7 favorites]


So I'm not really a comic-book super-nerd but did Black Widow get all that much ink pre-MCU or was she one of a seemingly innumerable also-rans in The Avengers? Johansson is great and seems like she can do no wrong but I really have no idea if the character has much going for her, compared to Iron Man and Thor both of which got tons and tons of comics and spin-offs back in the day.
GuyZero

Yeah, she's always been something of a B-lister. She was originally an Iron Man villain, palled around with Daredevil, was in the Champions with some other B-listers, worked with SHIELD, etc. As MartinWisse says above, the version you see in the movie is a distillation of how the character has evolved in the comics over decades, including retcons of her origin.

But as you say, this doesn't preclude interesting plots with her, she just doesn't have as strong a well of source material to draw from as Spider-man or Thor.
posted by Sangermaine at 1:23 PM on May 6, 2015


she just doesn't have as strong a well of source material to draw from as Spider-man or Thor.

And we have some limited commercial proof that people just don't care enough about Black Widow as a leading character. Of course, the same thing is true for Ant-Man so we'll have to see how that goes.

But if Ant-Man manages to do good box office receipts then honestly it's just silly not to give Johansson her own top billing in a Black Widow movie.

called Lucy
posted by GuyZero at 1:30 PM on May 6, 2015


That e-mail is pretty meh... I mean it doesn't really say anything and there is zero context so I have no idea why anyone is even talking about it.

I'm sad we're not getting a Black Widow movie but very much psyched for Captain Marvel. I guess in the end the powers that be just weren't prepared to have two Woman lead movies.... Though I guess there is some argument that she makes an amazing secondary character and a fear that she might not be the best lead character (BW that is... Scarlet has clearly proven that she can do anything she damn well wants to)
posted by cirhosis at 1:31 PM on May 6, 2015


she just doesn't have as strong a well of source material to draw from as Spider-man or Thor.

Pretty sure someone in Hollywood could create a story.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:36 PM on May 6, 2015 [4 favorites]


Hell, I could create a story. Of course, it would be about her retiring to Los Angeles to open an artisanal pirogi food truck, but I think there is an audience for it.
posted by maxsparber at 1:43 PM on May 6, 2015 [16 favorites]


I believe there is now a comic of some kind.
posted by Artw at 1:44 PM on May 6, 2015


Pretty sure someone in Hollywood could create a story.

My point is that if no one cared enough to write for the character in the last 30+ years of print comics, why are people going to start liking the character so much more on screen?

And, to a separate point, the whole thing about failed female superhero movies is so silly. The Punisher was super-popular on paper but as a movie brought in mediocre box office.
posted by GuyZero at 1:47 PM on May 6, 2015


It is frustrating that Marvel has been so reluctant to move forward with a female-led film, especially in the wake of last year's massive Guardians of the Galaxy. It has to be pretty embarrassing for those fans who made a huge deal out of how DC couldn't figure out how to do a Wonder Woman movie when Marvel was raking in cash with a film starring a snarky raccoon and his pal, a tree that walks around. I think overall Marvel's "cinematic universe" approach has been really interesting and done pretty well, but they've done a lot lately to squander much of the good will the first Phase of films and tie-ins built up.

The problem is from outside it seems like slapping the Marvel Studios name on something is obviously a license to make money doing virtually anything. But from the inside, they're just another corporation with shareholders they have to answer to, which requires them to make more and more and more and more money every time they produce and release a movie. Getting into this whole "cinematic universe" thing was a huge gamble for the company, which was in dire financial straits and willing to try something hugely ambitious and crazy. But there was a tipping point past which their success became the exact reason they're less likely to take what they perceive as risks, because that could put their bottom line in danger.

For whatever reason, they don't think that making a Black Widow standalone movie would make them enough money to justify the cost of its production and marketing, although again to outside observers that seems totally counter to the evidence at hand (Black Widow is a familiar character from a hugely successful franchise, Lucy proved that Scarlett Johannson can draw in huge box office on her own, etc.). I'm sure there's some spreadsheet on some dude's desk at Marvel Studios that shows a Black Widow movie would only bring in x hundred million dollars, and whatever x equals is "not good enough." It really sucks, but that's how those decisions get made.

Only sorta related:
Blair Witch cost 13M to 30M million to make and returned like another 100M back. (I forget the actual numbers).

Production costs on that movie were nowhere near even 6 digits. The filmmakers produced the movie for very little money--depending on who you ask and what time of day it is, something more than $2,000 but less than $25,000--and even counting the cost of purchasing distribution rights and marketing, the studio probably didn't spend more than $1-$2 million at most to acquire, strike prints, and market The Blair Witch Project. Then it went on to make over $200 million. That's a lot, but it's hardly "tentpole blockbuster" level. Plus major studios have mostly seemed to have absolutely no idea how to do horror movies, especially post-Blair Witch, so it's not surprising that franchise was so colossally bungled.
posted by rabbitroom at 1:48 PM on May 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


The reality is that Marvel is going to invest 100m in movies that are all but guaranteed of having 500m+ box office which means that they'll go for ensembles like Avengers of GotG instead of pushing a Widow movie because they feel like the risk is lower.

Captain Marvel will be the big test because it will be a female lead but they could still ensemble the fuck out of it by making it Cosmic or having the GotG show up.

It's kinda a shame because I'd love a Widow movie or a Shulkie Movie or an Ant-Man/Wasp movie with Pym and Janet but Marvel has gotten very conservative all of a sudden.
posted by vuron at 1:49 PM on May 6, 2015


She-Hulk shouldn't be in a movie. She should have a legal comedy television series where she has hilarious courtroom adventures defending the great and obscure of the Marvel universe. It would be a perfect vehicle to introduce all sorts of characters who would never make it into a movie.
posted by Sangermaine at 1:52 PM on May 6, 2015 [49 favorites]


A Black Widow comic series began in 2014. The few issues I've read through Marvel Unlimited were fairly entertaining.

Captain Marvel will be the big test because it will be a female lead but they could still ensemble the fuck out of it by making it Cosmic or having the GotG show up.

Given the direction of Phase 3 I'd be surprised if it weren't cosmic. (The two things I ask for for that movie: success, and a cameo of Kamala fangirling over Carol as a setup for a later Ms. Marvel movie or at least a significant role in Inhumans.)
posted by Foosnark at 1:54 PM on May 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


Shulkie legal drama on netflix would honestly be the best thing ever.

Plus she'd be a great addition to a Defenders movie as I'm honestly not sure Daredevil + Alias + Luke Cage + Iron Fist will be enough to really anchor an ensemble movie.
posted by vuron at 1:55 PM on May 6, 2015 [6 favorites]


I'd be frankly shocked if Captain Marvel didn't have Kree, Supreme Intelligence, GotG, Inhumans and Thanos show up in it.

They've got a ton of source material to tie in by that point in order to setup the Infinity War and Captain Marvel being Kree powered is an obvious way to go cosmic and tie in the Inhumans.
posted by vuron at 1:58 PM on May 6, 2015


My point is that if no one cared enough to write for the character in the last 30+ years of print comics, why are people going to start liking the character so much more on screen?

i don't read comic books but i watch movies and i like scarjo and action movies and i watched lucy and i will never not want to see her beating the shit out of people. i don't care if that makes sense to you just someone TAKE MY FUCKING MONEY
posted by twist my arm at 2:01 PM on May 6, 2015 [13 favorites]


There's a rumor that ABC is working on a Ms. Marvel show, though it was just one since-deleted post on Reddit so it's hard to put any stock in that. But how amazing would that be?
posted by kmz at 2:02 PM on May 6, 2015


I thought I agreed with twist my arm and then I also watched Lucy and it was so inane that I'm rethinking my conviction.
posted by Justinian at 2:02 PM on May 6, 2015


I'm not convinced it would only do OK domestically. It may not do Iron Man level box office but then again nothing does.

Hunger Games has done very well against superhero movies.

2015
Insurgent $120 M

2014
Mockingjay, Pt. 1: $337 M
Captain America: Winter Soldier: $260M
Guardians of the Galaxy: $333 M
Malificent: $241 M
Spider Man 2: $ 202 M
X-Men: Days of Future Past: $214 M


2013
Iron Man 3: $409 M
Catching Fire: $424 M
Wolverine: $132 M

2012
Hunger Games: $408 M
Dark Knight Rises $448 M
Avengers $623 M
Spider Man: $262 M
Divergent: $151 M

2011
X-Men: First Class: $ 146 M
Captain America $ 176 M

2010
Iron Man 2: $312 M

2008
Iron Man: $308 M

I threw Insurgent and Malificent on there because they were explicitly female-led SF&F movies that had reasonably good box office performance. Malificent appeared to have excellent support in marketing the movie and Jolie, and lack of promotion dollars has been one factor why female-led movies have struggled.

I see a lot of the criticism of Age of Ultron and agree with many of them. But, it's a big, stupid, superhero movie that spent more time thinking about the particle effects for the Scarlet Witch and why Vision's uniform has visible abs than any of the thematic issues dropped between explosions, punches, or breaking glass. So I'm not particularly interested in getting into a fan debate about the deep meaning of a flashback scene.
posted by CBrachyrhynchos at 2:05 PM on May 6, 2015 [4 favorites]


Considering how awful AoS is I'd hate to see ABC get another shot at a Marvel series.

Agent Carter was very good but it was always a miniseries. I'd hate to see a solo hero try to get stretched out to 22 episodes.
posted by vuron at 2:05 PM on May 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


I don't think a character's popularity in the comics is the best indication of what will make a lot of money as a movie, given how many more people are going to see the movies than buy the comics. GotG wasn't exactly Marvel's biggest seller.
posted by skycrashesdown at 2:08 PM on May 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


Gritty Netflix series grounded in real world spycraft but also featuring the Red Ghost...
posted by Artw at 2:09 PM on May 6, 2015


Isn't Red Ghost covered by the FF IP?

Of course the best thing ever would be a 1961 Netflix period piece with Reed doing SCIENCE alongside the rest of the FF.

Fight all sorts of 60s era villains (Wizard and the rest of the Frightful 4) including Doom and then at the end of the miniseries have the FF get into an epic fight with Doom that somehow uses Doom's timesled and somehow the FF are erased from the MCU until suddenly at the end of Infinity War II they pop back into the universe and suddenly everyone remembers the lost history of the MCU.
posted by vuron at 2:16 PM on May 6, 2015 [5 favorites]


Considering how awful AoS is

Not trying to be snarky vuron... but how do you come to that conclusion? I've been thoroughly enjoying it to be honest. And checking out Rotten Tomatoes the overall consensus seems to be that it's pretty good, the second season even more so than the first.

That said I think we can lay to rest the whole Ms. Marvel ABC tv series given that they've confirmed that Carol Danvers is going to get the movie treatment.

So Marvel studios isn't afraid of making a movie with a woman as a lead character... they are either afraid of making more than one and ended up choosing to introduce a new character (And I think bringing out Captain Marvel is a great idea) or they just didn't like the idea of a Black Widow centric movie...
posted by cirhosis at 2:20 PM on May 6, 2015 [4 favorites]


how Black Widow being the most popular female superhero of the decade is both exciting and disappointing.

Confession: I don't even know who the competition is. Who's the competition?
posted by kenko at 2:20 PM on May 6, 2015


My point is that if no one cared enough to write for the character in the last 30+ years of print comics, why are people going to start liking the character so much more on screen?

Well I'm not sure if I'm a good example or not, but I've bought all of 3 comics in the last 25 years (a few volumes of Sandman) and I'm still interested in these Marvel movies and have enjoyed the ones I've seen. I think Black Widow could potentially make for a pretty cool Bourne-esque movie that I'd be down to go see.
posted by Hoopo at 2:20 PM on May 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


Sorry, no, AoS is garbage and only managed to upgrade itself from unwatchable to barely watchable with season 2. We've seen better Marvel shows now, we can stop pretending otherwise.
posted by Artw at 2:22 PM on May 6, 2015 [5 favorites]


Blair Witch cost 13M to 30M million to make and returned like another 100M back. (I forget the actual numbers). Where a 200M blockbuster might only return the same as was put in. So you would think they would make more of the first, but they don't.

As rabbitroom pointed out, your estimates of the costs of that movie are high by several orders of magnitude.

And they did make a lot more of Blair Witch. That movie gave birth to an entire sub-genre of found footage horror movies. There have been, what, 12 Paranormal Activities?
posted by mr_roboto at 2:24 PM on May 6, 2015


I gave up on AoS after the first season. Agent Carter was okay but not anything that really blew me away and Daredevil really puts both of them to shame.
posted by octothorpe at 2:26 PM on May 6, 2015


My point is that if no one cared enough to write for the character in the last 30+ years of print comics, why are people going to start liking the character so much more on screen?

Well, everyone loves Rocket Racoon and Groot these days. Rocket Racoon was a joke. Groot came from one of the deliberately pulpy horror anthologies as a monster-of-the-month. Both had a handful of appearances in print before 2007.

And the movies reach a broader audience, and are not complete pieces of crap, unlike 90% of the comics.
posted by CBrachyrhynchos at 2:31 PM on May 6, 2015


Agent Carter could've been much better but it kinda gave us the possibility of having Howard Stark run around the decades between WWII and Iron Man doing all sorts of clandestine activities.

Basically Planetary in the MCU.
posted by vuron at 2:31 PM on May 6, 2015 [3 favorites]


We are getting a Black Widow movie, it's just gonna be titled, Ghost in the Shell.
posted by Atreides at 2:31 PM on May 6, 2015 [4 favorites]


Don't we get to find out what happened in Budapest on Agents of SHIELD?

I don't think so. Maybe you mean Agent May and Coulson encountering that inhuman in Bahrain?
posted by axiom at 2:33 PM on May 6, 2015 [3 favorites]


And the movies reach a broader audience, and are not complete pieces of crap, unlike 90% of the comics.

I think you've reversed cause-and-effect for GotG here.

There are lots of shitty superhero films that bomb regardless of the popularity of the source material (again, Punisher).

When you make a high-budget film with broad-appeal writing (humour, snarky quips, mass battle scenes) it usually succeeds. And an all-star cast. They had Vin Diesel grunting out "I am Groot" for heaven's sake. Give the same cast and budget to a remake of Are You Being Served? and it would be a huge success.

Besides, there's something to be said for going way over the top not only in terms of galactic scale but in terms of redonkulous character design.
posted by GuyZero at 2:40 PM on May 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


Punisher: War Zone was not shitty.

(Bombed, yes.)
posted by Artw at 2:42 PM on May 6, 2015 [3 favorites]


Ok I'm definitely in the minority... I totally can't understand the hate for AoS. It's not perfect but I'd say it's better then 90% of the stuff that's on TV and definitely far more enjoyable than hateworthy.

I enjoyed Agent Carter, but felt that it really missed it's mark. It really should have been better and I was quite disappointed with the ending.

Daredevil was great. I really enjoyed that it was a very tight and concentrated storyline without succumbing to the temptation to meander around.
posted by cirhosis at 2:45 PM on May 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


I dunno, Artw. From Wikipedia:

"Punisher: War Zone received generally negative reviews from film critics. The film has a rating of 27% based on 101 reviews on Rotten Tomatoes with an average rating of 4.3 out of 10 with the consensus "War Zone recalls the excessively violent, dialogue-challenged actioners of the 1980s, and coincidentally feels two decades out of date."[46] Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times awarded the film 2 out of 4 stars, writing, "You used to be able to depend on a terrible film being poorly made. No longer. The Punisher: War Zone is one of the best-made bad movies I've seen." And that the film's only flaw is "that it's disgusting.""
posted by GuyZero at 2:46 PM on May 6, 2015


My biggest complaint about this whole thing is that since I wasn't in the know that when i googled Jos Whedon quit Twitter news the first real link sent me to Breitbart.com and I was forced to watch a horrible advertisement for his book about the Clintons because he hides the damn X to close it down and move on to the site. But, it was good to read some print that makes Fox News look sane and restores my regular use of the face palm. Much like that whole Weev thing the other day, there's a certain amount of Conservative showboating that reminds me of performance art. Who can one up being an asshole to another group of people?
posted by Nanukthedog at 2:54 PM on May 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


My point is that if no one cared enough to write for the character in the last 30+ years of print comics, why are people going to start liking the character so much more on screen?

It doesn't matter one single fuck how popular a comic book character is among actually comics readers: whether a bestseller or something cancelled after six issues is all so much noise when compared to actual mass media.

And there have been plenty of Black Widow stories published: she was one of the first female superheroes at Marvel to get her own series, in 1970, together with Madame Medusa off off the Inhumans, got various graphic novel and mini series over the years, often a key player in the Avengers not to mention costarring in Daredevil for a long time.

Compared to Antman, especially the Scott Lang Antman? She's a superstar.

But of course none of that really matters other than as story fodder for television or cinema. What all y'all forgot was that until motherfucking Blade proved it was possible to actually make a hit series of superhero movies starring somebody else than either Batman or Superman, all superhero movies were failures and the idea that Iron Man frex is of course a natural character for a tentpole summer spectactular would've been laughable until about seven years ago.

After all, they only got Robert Downey, Jr. because his career was in the pits and this seemed like easy money.

What the Marvel movie team has done and understood better than anybody else is that a) there is a huge, untapped audience for decent superhero stories as long as b) they actually learn from what comics have done with them and don't try and reinvent the wheel. That was actually the real problem with Supergirl frex: all you needed to make it a decent movie was to look at how the comics had handled her for decades, not invent all that crap with Faye Duneway around it. Supergirl loses her world, gets to Earth, Superman finds her, sets her up as an orphan, trains her as his secret weapon, introduce the bad guy/gal for the second act, job done. End the movie with her revealed and DC could've had a movie franchise ala Marvel's three decades early.

Instead they killed her off in Crisis.
posted by MartinWisse at 3:02 PM on May 6, 2015 [4 favorites]


Punisher: War Zone is one of the greatest films ever made.
posted by maxsparber at 3:03 PM on May 6, 2015 [3 favorites]


That said I think we can lay to rest the whole Ms. Marvel ABC tv series given that they've confirmed that Carol Danvers is going to get the movie treatment.

Carol Danvers is the current Captain Marvel. Ms. Marvel is a Danvers fangirl named Kamala Khan who is a total nerd that writes superhero fanfic and loves doggies because she is awesome.
posted by zombieflanders at 3:04 PM on May 6, 2015 [6 favorites]


From the Marvel-Industrial Complex:
Jen Yamato of The Daily Beast summed up the new film’s approach to Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow: “The result is an overdue character exploration for Black Widow that still manages to reduce the baddest bitch in the MCU to a shell of a superheroine who’s sad she can never be a complete woman.” The “sterilization” Yamato alludes to is a totally head-scratching addition to her story on Whedon’s part, one that’s desperately out of place in a PG-13 film aimed at kids.
posted by nubs at 3:10 PM on May 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


zombieflanders... Carol Danvers is the current Captain Marvel yes... but she was also Ms. Marvel up until 2012 when they decided to change the direction of the character/series (for the better I think).

So yeah they reuse the character names a bunch... but I still stand by my statement... that we won't have a tv show about a fangirl before we have an actual movie about the hero herself...
posted by cirhosis at 3:11 PM on May 6, 2015


I think a BW movie could be great, and for a precedent of a female-led movie kicking ass and making bank, look no further than Kill Bill.
posted by emd3737 at 3:18 PM on May 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


Whedon seems to want to use Widow as a proxy for Buffy/River/Echo which is kinda unfortunate because I feel like he's trying to resolve issues with his own creations via a character that could easily be used to do something much more interesting.

Oh well I'm kinda hoping that Krysten Ritter in AKA Jessica Jones is handled better because thus far I've kinda liked the TV series with female leads.
posted by vuron at 3:19 PM on May 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


Ok I'm definitely in the minority... I totally can't understand the hate for AoS. It's not perfect but I'd say it's better then 90% of the stuff that's on TV and definitely far more enjoyable than hateworthy.

I didn't say I hated it, just that it wasn't worth keeping up with. I'll probably catch up with it once the whole season shows up on Hulu but I didn't find it "must watch TV".
posted by octothorpe at 3:19 PM on May 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


I think you've reversed cause-and-effect for GotG here.

I wasn't aware that I posed a cause-and-effect. I've suggested that movie franchises exist independently of the comics source material. Unless you're talking about a limited run, 90% of the print comics character development is going to be shit. That number drops to 75% for limited-run arcs. I agree that GotG succeeded by virtue of a script that didn't suck given to a strong ensemble cast. That has nothing to do with the print history of the characters.
posted by CBrachyrhynchos at 3:27 PM on May 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


It's my understanding that this was Whedon's last foray into the MCU. The Russo brothers are taking over starting with CA:CW and then Infinity War.

Unless he is still around as a executive producer or whatever.
posted by M Edward at 3:30 PM on May 6, 2015


And I hated the way they portrayed BW in CA:TWS so if those writers are in charge now I am not at all eager to see what they might have planned for a feature.

BW in Avengers and Iron Man felt like a completely different (better) character than in TWS.
posted by M Edward at 3:36 PM on May 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


Punisher: War Zone is very well made. It's still a bad movie. I wish Lexi Alexander would get a shot at something more substantial and with a bigger budget, she seems extremely competent (but kind of bad at picking projects).
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 3:55 PM on May 6, 2015


Well you guys have done it. I'm gonna watch Punisher: War Zone.

Incidentally I didn't mind the Thomas Jane one, and The Punisher was my fave comic back in grade 7.
posted by Hoopo at 3:56 PM on May 6, 2015


Basically expect a Gart Ennis story from the Punisher: Marvel Knights era with a McNulty from The Wire chewing epic amounts of scenery as Jigsaw.

Also keep an eye out for the Urban Freestyle Running Crew.
posted by Artw at 4:11 PM on May 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


from: "I am starting to think Patton Oswald is closer to a GamerGate troll than a stand up comic."
Yep. There is a "Tea Party" equivalent of progressivism/liberalism. And they just chased Joss Whedon off Twitter. Good job, guys. Ugh.

Anyone else see a mob of Bugs bunnies chasing a screaming Yosimite Sam? No? Just me?

*checks meds*

Pretty sure someone in Hollywood could create a story.

you'd think so, but here we are

BW worked in the first film. Age of Ultron, not so much.
Comics, she works for the same reason the Punisher works outside his Mack Bolan/Man on Fire milieu. "You can't beat ME! I've got superpowBOOM! *100 grams of high explosives goes off in their face*
It's the reality ensues/I'm smarter thing. Black Widow is a bit more James Bond tho.

Punisher: War Zone is bits of a great movie. For that reason. Other bits of it, not so much.

I'd kill to see a She-Hulk legal drama where no one mentions she's a 7 foot tall green giant and it's an up-beat Ally McBeal parody comedy-drama (especially with Robert Downey Jr. as a love interest)

And any Wonder Woman movie should have some hard core Pankration. Black Widow might be all about the sacrifice throw, but Diana would be straight up brutal.
posted by Smedleyman at 4:13 PM on May 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


One of the things that I love about some visions of Wonder Woman is that she isn't just female Superman. That's Supergirl.

Wonder Woman is someone almost as strong as Superman, almost as fast as Flash, almost as skilled in martial arts as Lady Shiva, etc. She is utterly terrifying to most of the JLA because she has no weaknesses to exploit. Basically if she ever goes bad she stands a good chance of defeating the rest of the league solo unless the author pulls out an asspull like speed force Or batgod preptime shenanigans.

She should always be one of the coolest heroes in DC but unfortunately the fan boys seem to largely loathe her and she goes long periods with awful creative teams. She also has a desperately awful rogues gallery
posted by vuron at 4:31 PM on May 6, 2015 [3 favorites]



I'd kill to see a She-Hulk legal drama where no one mentions she's a 7 foot tall green giant and it's an up-beat Ally McBeal parody comedy-drama (especially with Robert Downey Jr. as a love interest)


Like Harvey Birdman?
posted by kenko at 4:42 PM on May 6, 2015 [9 favorites]


I blame the Bush presidency, not simply for the wars in the Mideast or for even any specific policies undertaken by the administration, but for the fact that everything has to be politicized and polarized.
posted by Apocryphon at 4:49 PM on May 6, 2015


I would like to see a Black Widow movie with ScarJo as BW but not set in the current Marvel superhero movie universe or style please as that is ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ
posted by Bwithh at 4:54 PM on May 6, 2015


My teenage daughters seem pretty uninterested in Black Widow in the Marvel movies and were much more excited by the idea of a movie about Captain Marvel, a female hero with real superpowers who is more in Thor and Iron Man's league.

I wish Whedon had included the Wasp in the first Avengers movie.
posted by straight at 4:58 PM on May 6, 2015


Wait, wasn't The WASP the supervillan who kept trying to gentrify low-income neighbourhoods and turn kids' baseball diamonds into members-only golf clubs?

I wish Whedon had included the Wasp in the first Avengers movie.

Seriously though, there are waaaaaayyyy too many Avengers as is. Like, everyone has been an Avenger. If you thought AoU was over-stuffed, getting all the Avengers in there would have turned it into a Peter Jackson-esque multi-part 9-hour epic just to film what fit into a single comic.
posted by GuyZero at 5:16 PM on May 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


Blame Wright for the failure to do Hank and Janet. Apparently between him not wanting to do Pym and his general slowness in finalizing a screenplay the ability to integrate Ant-Man and Wasp into the Avengers initiative basically vanished.

Which is a shame because frankly I think Pym is more interesting as a mad scientist than Banner or Stark and I've always like Janet especially when she's been Avengers chairwoman.

Considering that Steve is a man out of time, Stark is a massive egotist, and none of the other Avengers are particularly stellar leaders having someone who is completely media saavy like Janet being the public face of the Avengers initiative would've been awesome.

But instead we are getting Lang Ant-Man and dead Janet...
posted by vuron at 5:19 PM on May 6, 2015


The whole "feminists drove Whedon off twitter" thing left me bewildered. When I first heard about it, the impression I had was that Whedon quit because somebody (Marvel execs?) didn't like what he was saying about some other movie and he quit because he was tired of taking spankings for his uncensored thoughts.

Meanwhile, I want my Black Widow movie and I want the Russos doing it, not Whedon. I enjoyed the Marvel films all right, but given the choice between Winter Soldier!Widow and Age of Ultron!Widow, the Whedon brand doesn't even come close. At least the way they're doing these movies seems to mean that you don't have to follow up on stupid plot ideas like Bruce/Natasha in subsequent films.
posted by immlass at 5:59 PM on May 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


Eh. Dogpiles happen. Someone fucking off because they want nothing to do with it is entirely plausible.
posted by Artw at 6:07 PM on May 6, 2015




I'm on twitter a lot in the evening, and I hear as much about Joss Whedon leaving twitter this week as I did the Baltimore riots last week. I like a lot of Whedon's stuff, so it's totally without rancor that I say I cannot begin to imagine why anyone gives a shit about this, at all.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 6:16 PM on May 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


Re: AoU’s Black Widow Problem is a Marvel Problem, Not a Whedon One

Exhibit A: Widow as the Damsel in Distress

She wasn't in distress, she radioed where Ultron was located and then continued hanging out to get info. After all, Ultron needed someone to talk to.

Exhibit B: Bruce as the Noble Hero

Eh, the writer makes a mistake I've seen a lot in thinking of Bruce and the Hulk as a single person. They're not. Bruce didn't get to be noble, he got rejected by BW after finally agreeing to take the chance on having a relationship with her. The Hulk got used by her. She doesn't want a relationship with HIM, she wants Banner. But at that particular moment the Hulk was needed, so she pushed the right button to bring him.

It's a love triangle, complicated by the fact of the guys having to share the same physical space (not body) which prevents them from being fully available to BW.

Exhibit C: Widow’s Big Moment

Her big moment was chasing down the Ultron truck, saving Cap's ass and then getting the casket to Hawkeye in a very risky move. She bought the team its second wind and probably contributed to the eventual defeat of YOU KNOW WHO in the next Avenger's movie by ensuring Vision gets made.

Reading these various posts about what BW really did or what happened to her in AoE always come off as odd, like did we watch the same movie?

But there certainly seems to be some aspect of the population who got different messages, so it's worth considering for the future.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:30 PM on May 6, 2015 [6 favorites]


Even when I've replied today with the Buzzfeed article where he says he did not quit Twitter for that reason, they've double down with "WELL THAT'S WHAT HE HAS TO SAY."
Did they manage to read even halfway through the article? I don't see how. Somewhere in between when Whedon says "I have been attacked by militant feminists since I got on Twitter", "Every breed of feminism is attacking every other breed, and every subsection of liberalism is always busy attacking another subsection of liberalism", and "If you don’t live up to the litmus test of feminism in this one instance, then you’re a misogynist", anyone's credence in the Whedon-is-just-sucking-up-to-left-wing-extremists hypothesis should essentially vanish.
posted by roystgnr at 7:33 PM on May 6, 2015 [2 favorites]


The whole "feminists drove Whedon off twitter" thing left me bewildered. When I first heard about it, the impression I had was that Whedon quit because somebody (Marvel execs?) didn't like what he was saying about some other movie and he quit because he was tired of taking spankings for his uncensored thoughts.

They fairly transparently did, though I'd say it's because he's a smart chap and realised there was no possible win-state from where he was, rather than that his damaged fee-fees demanded a quiet bedroom and a pillow to soak with tears.

Activism and art don't play well together, because an activist viewpoint necessarily requires rigidity so it can bash against the dominant culture and produce change, and that kind of rigidity is anathema to any non-polemical art.
posted by Sebmojo at 7:58 PM on May 6, 2015 [3 favorites]


The Black Widow film should be a zany rom-com like Bridesmaids but with CGI. Maybe cameo that talking Raccoon from Guardians of the Galaxy.
posted by Renoroc at 8:20 PM on May 6, 2015


Bah! The Black Widow film should stick to what works. Think of the best charismatic & ruthless character parts of Craig!Bond & Green!Lynd from Casino Royale with the kickass fighting and the couple tender moments from the Damon!Bourne films. She holds her own in the Avengers, but she'd be nearly peerless in her natural element of espionage. Show us why S.H.I.E.L.D. values her so highly.

And ScarJo is a good enough actress to do plenty with a raised eyebrow, a "simple" look, or the inflection of her voice to show us her pain and self-disgust better than any clunky overwrought mini-speech on her sterilization.
posted by Fiberoptic Zebroid and The Hypnagogic Jerks at 9:43 PM on May 6, 2015 [1 favorite]


If the chances for a Black Widow movie are so slim, how will Squirrel Girl ever get her movie ?
posted by Pendragon at 2:46 AM on May 7, 2015 [5 favorites]


It's odd to hear people complaining about the Hulk/BW romance, because there were hints of it there in the first Avengers and it makes sense to me. There's some very deep connections and mind games going on between those two across both movies.

In the first, Bruce Banner manages to do something to the Black Widow that rarely happens. He gets physically close to her and then gets the drop on her, scaring the shit out of her.

When they're talking in that hut in India, Banner is very mild and meek as they verbally joust about whether Banner will be visiting Shield. But then suddenly he raises his voice and gets angry, smashing his fists on the table, prompting her to pull one of her hidden guns on him (how awesome was it that she had a hidden gun and presumably more at the party in AoE? FREAKING awesome. This is one prepared spy). She was afraid he was about to Hulk out and was going to kill him if it looked he was. To her credit, she doesn't pull the trigger, as she's skilled enough to see that it's not happening. But she was ready to. Sure, we find out later that it wouldn't have mattered, Banner had already tried to kill himself, only to have the Hulk save him. But Natasha was ready to try to do the deed, if need be.

But that encounter also leaves her shaken and scared, with good reason. She thought she was about to go up against the Hulk and that's not a good position for anyone to be in. Bruce literally has to talk her down from being so scared.

What Bruce did there wasn't a mean task, meant to hurt her, but it's a smart move on Banner's part in terms of testing her about whether she's telling the truth on bringing him in peacefully. I think BW recognized the intelligence there and had some admiration for Banner being able to pull off getting the drop on the master spy/assassin. Not even Loki managed to do that.

In AoE, Widow manages to do the reverse, not just to be Banner, but the Hulk also, by getting striking at that in a very personal manner. For Banner, she manages to get him to trust her, to have a belief that he could have a normal life. But it's at that moment that she pushes him off the ledge and "calls" in the Hulk to save the day. Which he does.

After the battle, when Hulk is on the Quinjet in stealth mode, Black Widow calls on the radio to get to Hulk, to bring him back into the fold. But he refuses and instead turns the radio off, so Shield can't find him (which is an odd thing. You'd think there would be some master override which would allow the spy agency to find its planes. But whatever). I think Black Widow managed to do something particularly rare to the Hulk: she hurt him. Not physically of course, but emotionally, by rejecting him relationship wise in favor of Banner and just seeing the Hulk as this tool to be used. The Hulk is just a big baby in a lot of ways, an outgrowth of Banner's traumatic childhood, who is probably just does want to loved. But it's puny Banner she kisses and wants to run away with, not Hulk.

So all three have managed to hurt each other, leading to Bruce and the Hulk wanting to keep their distance and Black Widow finding herself hurt and emotionally vulnerable, which is probably a new feeling for her. Lotta complex relationship dynamics going on there and it all works for me.

Except for one thing, which I've always been surprised hasn't been a bigger issue when criticizing either of them separately or their new relationship. Back in Avengers, Hulk hit Black Widow. When he hulked out on the carrier and was running around breaking stuff, he chased Black Widow and wound up smacking her so hard she flew up against a wall. He was about to hit her again, but Thor came along and distracted him. Odd that was never brought up again on screen.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:41 AM on May 7, 2015 [2 favorites]


If the chances for a Black Widow movie are so slim, how will Squirrel Girl ever get her movie ?

Well, after her TV show runs for six seasons and becomes a juggernaut, execs will start to believe in her box office success.
posted by dinty_moore at 5:45 AM on May 7, 2015 [5 favorites]


Yeah, the main thing that really bothered me about the Bruce/Natasha romance was Natasha's line about how he couldn't hurt her - that was a filthy, filthy lie. We've seen the Hulk hurt Natasha before. Most of the rest of it could just be tweaked slightly to avoid the grosser interpretations.
posted by dinty_moore at 5:49 AM on May 7, 2015


Activism and art don't play well together, because an activist viewpoint necessarily requires rigidity so it can bash against the dominant culture and produce change, and that kind of rigidity is anathema to any non-polemical art.

As a fairly widely produced playwright, published author, and art critic for two decades: nonsense. I have seen an awful lot of great art informed by activism, and the fact is without activist critics, art has a tendency to settle into unconsciously reenforcing and repeating the dominant culture.
posted by maxsparber at 5:51 AM on May 7, 2015 [4 favorites]


My point is that if no one cared enough to write for the character in the last 30+ years of print comics, why are people going to start liking the character so much more on screen?

Well, a lot of the last thirty years of print comics (closer to fifty for Black Widow, really), were hella sexist. I don't see that as a reason for them to continue to be sexist. We can move the fuck on.

Also: guys, I hate to tell you this, but the Iron Man comics are pretty bad. He's had like, two - maybe three? - good storylines. And demon in a bottle is probably not what Disney is going for in the MCU. He didn't exactly have brand recognition in 2007, either.
posted by dinty_moore at 5:59 AM on May 7, 2015


Exactly, when I heard they were doing an Iron Man movie, it was very "WTF, that makes zero sense, nobody gives a shit about that character." So much THAT.

A Black Widow movie could totally work. But Marvel, despite all the entertaining movies they've made, is being really conservative about this. Never mind that the sequel to the movie with the talk raccoon and giant tree is already in the works, a Black Widow film is just impossible at the moment.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:08 AM on May 7, 2015 [2 favorites]


You'd think there would be some master override which would allow the spy agency to find its planes.

The current Quinjet is mentioned in that scene, and elsewhere in AoU, as being Stark's creation, not a SHIELD design -- Nat even says they can't track Stark's stealth tech, just before Hulk cuts the comms.

Back in Avengers, Hulk hit Black Widow. [...] Odd that was never brought up again on screen.

Nat would later literally beat sense into Clint in the same movie, and that clearly didn't leave a rift in their close friendship. Given her job, and what she's clearly used to from Red Room forward, what the Hulk did is simply part of the career she's more-or-less chosen -- as well as dealing with the fear that comes from it.

I think that's part of where this "you can't hurt me" comes from. My theory: She's obviously wrong, yet thinks that her years of emotional suppression/management, and her skills with dealing with physical pain, and the fact that The Big Guy is usually OK....it's a pretty safe bet from her POV that Hulk would never hurt her again.

Mind you, it clearly turns out to be a wrong bet, but that happens; Nat's not infalliable.
posted by Asim at 6:11 AM on May 7, 2015


I'm really iffy on seeing AoU but that being said, her current solo comic does the former assassin with some serious "red in her ledger" seeking redemption to the point of personal recklessness really really well, and it could totally translate to a movie.
posted by KernalM at 6:13 AM on May 7, 2015 [1 favorite]


I'm a little behind on the new comic, but taking something from the first TPB would work really well - the feel is very 70's spy action thriller. Name of the Rose would also work as a story template if people really want something that's also an origin story.

I mean, I don't think it's going to happen at this point, but the reason why there's no Black Widow movie is definitely not because there are no possible good stories to tell with that character.
posted by dinty_moore at 6:23 AM on May 7, 2015


(which is an odd thing. You'd think there would be some master override which would allow the spy agency to find its planes. But whatever)

Very little of the movie makes sense when you think about it, which isn't necessarily a bad thing.
posted by CBrachyrhynchos at 6:32 AM on May 7, 2015


Well, Ultron was insane, so it doesn't have to make a whole lot of sense, other than "Stop the bad guy"
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:39 AM on May 7, 2015


Particularly Ultron's theatrically complex Rube Goldberg plans for mass extinction when an ageless artificial intelligence could just play the long game in the current mass extinction event. But that's more Peter Watts than Marvel's ultra-human apocalypse. (As opposed to the mutant, Apocalypse, although Apocalypse's apocalypse may or may not be canon depending on which turd in that rhino dung pile they're sniffing this month.)

But more on topic, the criticism that Whedon isn't the feminist he claims or is claimed by fans has been running for over 15 years now. So the theory that he's getting chased off by that criticism now when he can laugh his way to the bank as a billion-dollar movie director doesn't make a lot of sense to me.
posted by CBrachyrhynchos at 6:50 AM on May 7, 2015


Particularly Ultron's theatrically complex Rube Goldberg plans for mass extinction when an ageless artificial intelligence could just play the long game in the current mass extinction event.

He was trying to get nuclear launch codes to do things quickly, but Jarvis was preventing him from getting them. Onward to plan B!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:52 AM on May 7, 2015


Ultron was really a (nearly ) omnipotent child with a daddy complex. I think he wouldn't have had to foresight to play a long game, because "I want it now". Highly intelligent, but lacking common sense.

Or in DnD terms. High Intelligence, low Wisdom.
posted by Twain Device at 6:59 AM on May 7, 2015 [2 favorites]


(spoilers, obviously)

Natasha’s backstory and her relationship with Bruce is supposed to be ironic, I thought. I think she thought she was a monster because under that Soviet programming, she was willing to do anything to win. To achieve her mission: be the best assassin/spy. The test given to her was to kill someone and then, after, to be sterilized. That's very ironic - she was made into a weapon that can only take lives and not give them. That’s what made her a monster.

We also see this with Natasha’s relationship with Bruce. It’s Natasha who turns the Hulk back into Bruce, as he trusts her alone to bring his humanity back. That’s why the betrayal at the end with Natasha being the one to push Bruce into the hole in order to make Bruce change is so ironic. She was ultimately the one who made Bruce bring out the monster. I also think that's partly why Bruce left, realizing that if he stayed with the Avengers, he might be forced to give up his humanity altogether and be turned into a weapon. A running theme of the movie for me is that all the characters were willing to do whatever it took to win. And this is Natasha's version of that.
posted by Windigo at 7:25 AM on May 7, 2015 [2 favorites]


Traditionally Ultron is shit and his plans stupid, so it sounds like they are sticking to the comics.
posted by Artw at 7:31 AM on May 7, 2015


His brother Penultron is even worse.
posted by GuyZero at 9:00 AM on May 7, 2015 [3 favorites]


Yeah, Ultron-5 was still kind of a joke. It wasn't until Ultron-6 (Hexultron?) that he got really scary by making a body composed entirely of adamantium.
posted by straight at 11:39 AM on May 7, 2015




YESSSSSS, more Peggy is always a good thing. Plus, the 8 episode format while AoS is on break was great, no reruns!

The only bad part is that Peggy can't be the on the Avengers.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:30 AM on May 8, 2015


Why does a superintelligent nigh-omnipotent AI need a body at all?
posted by kenko at 9:13 AM on May 8, 2015


Imposing presence to impress the other AIs.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:19 AM on May 8, 2015


Two hours of software Ultron and Jarvis playing Core Wars would be pretty dull.

Unless they basically did it as Tron 3.
posted by GuyZero at 9:21 AM on May 8, 2015


Why does a superintelligent nigh-omnipotent AI need a body at all?

Well, why does God need a starship?
posted by maxsparber at 9:29 AM on May 8, 2015 [2 favorites]


The only bad part is that Peggy can't be the on the Avengers.

If you're under the impression that the Marvel Universe doesn't have time travel, you have been drastically misinformed. What are the two Infinity Gems we haven't seen yet?
posted by straight at 9:31 AM on May 8, 2015 [1 favorite]


The Marvel Cinematic Universe doesn't have and I hope they never get it.

However, if Peggy gets injected with serum based off the biology of Jaiying from AoS, that could work.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:06 AM on May 8, 2015


My boyfriend and I were talking about that - he thought it would be sweet to have the time gem with Cap, I thought it would be the most depressing thing ever.
posted by dinty_moore at 10:06 AM on May 8, 2015


Unless they basically did it as Tron 3.

Add in Stormtroopers, and you'd have the full Disney/Marvel/Lucasfilm loop.
posted by CBrachyrhynchos at 11:36 AM on May 8, 2015


How To Make Black Widow Truly Awesome, According To Richard K. Morgan - creator of the Red Room backstory, etc...
posted by Artw at 12:22 PM on May 8, 2015 [1 favorite]


Holy crap, that was a great summation of the character. Can we send this guy money to do a Black Widow flick?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:08 PM on May 8, 2015


Two hours of software Ultron and Jarvis playing Core Wars would be pretty dull.

What is the internal reason, though?
posted by kenko at 2:47 PM on May 8, 2015


Tony copied the pattern from the sceptre into an Iron Legion body, thus Ultron was born with a body which he then copied into the bodies that had been built by Hydra. Wasn't that the reason?
posted by GuyZero at 4:36 PM on May 8, 2015


Beats me! That's why I'm asking.
posted by kenko at 9:54 PM on May 8, 2015




The lego toy is the same, which seems an odd coincidence.
posted by Artw at 12:25 PM on May 11, 2015


« Older Put a Rang on it.   |   Elton John: Prisoner of New York Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments