Logan – Elegy to an Era

After three viewings and two weeks, I’m finally ready to talk about Logan.  I had high expectations.  I tried to manage them but it was impossible!  Hugh Jackman has been playing Wolverine for seventeen years.  He ushered in the modern era of cinematic superheroes.  I couldn’t keep my expectations for his swansong from growing.  The film was absolutely nothing like I expected but it was brilliantly executed.  Hugh Jackman and James Mangold delivered a finale that deeply moved me.  Fair warning, this post will be filled with spoilers.  It will also be filled with emotions! Continue reading

Hugh Jackman and the Modern Cinematic Superhero

It was the summer of 2000.  I was just eighteen years old and on a two week trip with my high school Youth Group.  We piled into the church van and drove across country to Yellowstone, hiking every day and camping every night.  I saw some majestic sights.  I bought a literal sword (a rapier) in the “bargain cave” at a Cabella’s.  It was awesome!  As this adventure was unfolding, Bryan Singer’s X-Men was opening at movie theatres across the country.  With it, Hugh Jackman would usher in the age of the modern cinematic superhero with his iconic turn as Wolverine (it killed me that I couldn’t see it opening night, regardless of an awesome trip).  With Logan coming out this weekend I felt I had to offer my humble tribute to Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine.  Continue reading

A New Hulk for A New Age

Greg Pak’s work with Amadeus Cho in The Totally Awesome Hulk  is important to my own personal Hulk journey.  As a kid, I loved the Hulk.  I read a lot of his comic books too – and every single Hulk comic I read (save a back issue or two) was written by Peter David.  He shaped my entire understanding of the Hulk.  As my (first) comic collecting run was coming to an end, Mr. David’s final issue of The Incredible Hulk was mine as well.  Now, twenty years later, I’ve met a new Hulk and a new Hulk author.  In Greg Pak’s The Totally Awesome Hulk, I’ve found a brilliant mix of the old and the new as well as a Hulk that’s fun, relevant, and even teaches me a little something along the way. Continue reading

Patsy Walker, A.K.A., Friendship Goals!

Patsy Walker (a.k.a. Hellcat) has rarely been one of the Marvel Universe’s central stars.  She’s died and, unlike many of her comic contemporaries, stayed dead (narratively and/or culturally) for a pretty long time.  However, her character (at least, a version of her) returned to the spotlight in Netflix’s thoughtful, dark, and moving Jessica Jones.  As a result, we’ve all been given a fantastic treat in the form of Kate Leth and Brittney Williams’ regular monthly series Patsy Walker, A.K.A., Hellcat.  With all the struggles and emotional heaviness in the air around us, I wanted needed something fun today.  Well that led me right to Patsy Walker, the best best friend anyone could hope for! Continue reading

Captain America and the Defense of the American Dream

What do we make of today?  With the inauguration of our 45th president we, the American people, are facing an unprecedented age.  It was a difficult, divisive election to be sure.  We looked deeply into our own darkness, leaving many wounds in need of healing.  Hostile foreign powers played with our politics and we, by and large, let them.  Republicans didn’t care because it helped them claim the power they so desperately coveted.  Democrats didn’t say much either, afraid that they’d appear to be using foreign affairs to play dirty partisan politics like their rivals.  Now we have a carnival huckster, a reality TV showman ascending to the highest elected office in our land – a man who seems to know little of, and care even less for, our Constitution.  It all feels unreal, like a dystopian novel.  What will the presidency of Donald Trump herald?  I have no idea.  What do we do?  For that, I have a clearer picture.  For that, we have Captain America to guide us. Continue reading

Spidey and Me

I’ve happily written a lot on this blog about my love of Spider-Man.  Of alllll the fictional characters out there, he’s always been my favorite.  I’ve loved Spidey consistently for thirty years (wow…I’m getting old).  Sure, I met He-Man first but I can’t tell you the last time I watched Masters Of The Universe and I really dig Luke Skywalker but I didn’t see Star Wars until years after meeting the web-head.  And I’ve never stopped loving Spidey.  Yet for all my Spider-Gushing I’ve been remiss.  I’ve never talked directly about how impressed I’ve been since I’ve met Miles Morales! Continue reading

The Vision, The Other, and a Way to Communion

Okay, so obviously I’m late to the game with Tom King and Gabriel Hernandez Walta’s The Vision.  I started it when it came out but (honestly) it made me heart hurt a bit too much to read monthly.  But thankfully Kalie got me both trade paperbacks for Christmas!  Yay!!!  I’m happy I read this in one sitting as a complete, beautiful, tragic novel.  You know those novels that, once read, you can’t get out of your head?  Well that’s The Vision.  This story will haunt me, yes, but it also moved me – as we all need to be moved – by making me feel the experience of the other. Continue reading