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Marvel with the Phase 3 Knockout Punch

So back in 2008 Marvel and DC really started swinging. DC took a few jabs and hooks in the early rounds, with the Dark Knight trilogy, but nothing devastating. Marvel really started to wear them down with the beginning of Phase II. Yea DC got a knock down with Man of Steel, but Marvel was up by 4 count. It was late in the fight when Marvel hit DC hard with uppercut called Guardians of The Galaxy. They seemed content to with the points in the bag and they’d just wait out the fight, win by decision. DC started swinging for the fences, boom, Justice League and an entire slate of films. DC was going for the knock out. Until to day, when we all realized Marvel was just rocking the rope-a-dope, and kaboom. Knockout punch. Marvel is the reigning champ.

So when DC released their slate of films in their shareholders meeting it was pretty cool. Named off their upcoming properties, got everyone excited, but in true Marvel fashion they upped the game at completely out of nowhere press event. Disney sent out invitations on Monday inviting media outlets and film pundits to come to a special Marvel Event at the El Capitan Theater. They spent the day dropping their Phase III plans that will cumulate in a 2 part Avengers Infinity War film extravaganza.

The upcoming Phase III reads like this:

  • Captain America 3: Civil War on May 6 2016
  • Doctor Strange on November 4 2016
  • Guardians of the Galaxy 2 on May 5 2017
  • Thor 3: Ragnarok on July 28 2017
  • Black Panther(Starring Chadwick Bosewick) on November 3 2017
  • Avengers: Infinity War part 1 in May 2018
  • Captain Marvel on July 6 2018
  • Inhumans on November 2 2018
  • Avengers: Infinity War Part 2 on May 3 2019

So that’s what we have to look forward too. Before we get into what this all means let’s first look at what is missing. Iron Man 4. Not that it is needed. But it’s odd that it’s not there. And I do not know what the new picture deal is the Robert Downey Jr. and Marvel have come too, but I’d assume it includes both Avengers, Captain America, and either Black Panther, or Guardians 2. I think Black Panther makes more sense, but I’d love to see him Guardians.

Also missing is your solo Hulk film. No personally I don’t think we need a solo Hulk film. Yes the Ed Norton film The Incredible Hulk was good, but not as good as Hulk was in Avengers. However when asked about another solo film for the big ball of rage, Kevin Fiege replied:

“I wouldn’t say Hulk is absent from the timeline. I’d say Hulk is going to appear in many of those movies, particularly all the Avengers movies leading up to the Infinity War. Mark Ruffalo is on board for all those films and we’re excited for all those films. What happens with a standalone Hulk film? I’m going to say what I would have said about Black Panther last week or Captain Marvel before that, or Guardians of the Galaxy two years ago or Ant-Man ten years ago: We’ll see. We’d love to do it, we’d love to find a place to put it, but right now Hulk will be appearing with his friends in the other films.

So looks like we won’t be getting the big guy by himself, but that’s not to say we won’t be getting him. Where he will show up is anybody’s guess.

Well that leaves us with an exciting couple of years ahead of us. With as much as they gave us, they Marvel has also created more questions. Like when we will see Hulk. As well we will be looking for casting, who is Captain Marvel? Katee Sackoff? Is Benedict Cumberbatch Dr. Strange? Who will the Inhumans line up, will Black Bolt be a part of it? Is Vin Diesel going to be Black Bolt? Where will Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. play in all of this? How about the Netflix characters? Will they be a part of this? Dare Devil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Iron Fist? So many questions, so much to come!

Let’s look at Civil War first. The rumor says that after the events of Age of Ultron the government will be coming down on our heroes. And rightfully so. Looks like Iron Man has created the world’s biggest threat, based on something Ant Man began! So who should the Heroes of the world answer too? Welt he government obviously. And I would assume Stark is going to agree do to the creation of Ultron. You know who won’t agree? The worlds number 1 Boy Scout Captain America. This will further the rift between the leading heads of the Avengers and set them on a path that ends shield to flight stabilizer. With Black Panther caught right in the middle. But that’s not all. I predict, rightfully so, that Black Widow, Falcon, and Hawkeye will play crucial parts. But that’s not all. I bet War Machine/Iron Patriot makes his presence felt, as well as, wait for it, The Winter Soldier. That’s right. I’m where else does he fit in? He has to be involved in some potential.

Rumor for Strange says that Benedict Cumberbatch is close to signing. Well so was Phoenix. So I won’t put all my eggs in that basket just yet. I’m ok with the casting, but just okay. Seems like Cumberbatch is up for any and every role, and while I like him, and he’s obvious, I’d love something out of left field. Someone no one is expecting. The introduction of Strange will be significant. Especially if we want an eventual Planet Hulk. Maybe a phase 4 set on World War Hulk?

Black Panther is the one we as fans have been clambering for the most. And finally we will be getting it! And with Chadwick Bozeman no less! I think this is inspiring casting! I loved him in 42, I loved him Glory Road, he played Boobie Miles! And he was The Funk! He is one of the best! His inclusion in this universe really adds another level of talent! Looks like we will be getting hiom first in Civil War, probably without much character development, and we will probably get the real look at him when Black Panther hits us! The concept art is bad ass! BlackPanther If that doesn’t scream awesome, I don’t know what does!

Not much else is known about the other projects. Guardians 2 will look to recapture the magic, while Thor 3 will set us on the path to the Infinity War. Infinity War will be really interesting. Especially with the comments on how the Avenger line up will be forever changed after Age of Ultron. I expect the original line up, and the Guardians not to really make their presence felt until Part 2 in 2019.

However, all though Marvel has knocked out DC with this one, you best believe, DC is prepping for the rematch. We are looking at 30ish superhero films and shows in the next 6 years. The fight will continue, and no matter what happens, I think it is us fans who are the true winners.

Hooked on a feeling! A review of Guardians of the Galaxy

For a pretty long time now, my most anticipated film of the year has been Guardians of the Galaxy. Marvel’s final film in Phase II before we head into The Avengers Age of Ultron. This film looks to be Marvel’s biggest gamble to date. The characters are by far the most obscure, well until the post credit scene, but for the most part, some of the most obscure in all of the Marvel library. The hope was that now that we are 12 films in, that Marvel has gained a track record that gives the viewer a trust that’ll send them out to take a chance on the film. I for one hope that you all do take the leap of faith, you will not be disappointed.

Guardians of the Galaxy! The next big Marvel adventure. The film stars an amazing cast that includes Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Bautista, Lee Pace, Michael Rooker, Karen Gillan, and the voices of Bradley Cooper and Vin Diesel. Directed James Gunn, the film tells the story of 5 unlikely heroes that find themselves in the middle of a galaxy threatening crises and must come together to save the lives of billions upon billions of people.

The film is a lot of fun to watch. Chris Pratt who plays the main character Peter Quill, AKA Star Lord, is a thief who becomes the de facto leader of the group. He is joined by the assassin adopted daughter of the war lord Thanos, Gamora (Saldana). Along with two bounty hunters, Rocket Raccoon (Cooper) and Groot (Diesel) and a maniac named Drax the Destroyer (Bautista) who is on the hunt for Ronin the Accuser (Pace) for murdering his family. Ronin is joined by Gamora’s adopted sister Nebula (Gillan) in his quest to destroy the planet Xandar and the Nova Corps.

Guardians gets the blockbuster fun done right. You are entertained the entire film. There’s not really a moment in the film that it drags or gets boring. The graphics are also epic. As I watched the movie I kept get the feeling I was watching Star Wars, until I’d get a feeling that it was a Star Trek film. Finally I came to a conclusion that’s really the perfect mix between Star Wars, Star Trek, and a Marvel Film. The soundtrack was awesome as well. Every song takes you back, and flows within the film perfectly. They each give a sense of who Peter Quill is and where he comes from

While the movie is Peter Quill’s story, the show is definitely stolen by a trio of characters. Yes the superstar is obviously Bradley Cooper as Rocket. He brings such personality to the character that you don’t even hear Cooper’s voice. You believe this is the talking Raccoon Marvel has given us. Groot was special case. How was Vin Diesel going to give us substance with only 3 words, “I am Groot”? Well he does it. Not just as comedy relief, but he emotionally connects with us as well. And Bautista as Drax is amazingly a break out star. He’s not a world class thespian be any means, but he is still able to steal the scenes when on camera.

It’s not all perfect though. While the story remains as Peter Quill’s story, he is the most developed character in the film. These characters all have such rich back stories. Most of which we as fans wouldn’t know off the top of our heads. I for one had to look them all up when I heard of the movie. After doing my research I became very excited, yet the film doesn’t give us much on most them. You get some dialog about where they come from, but no real sense of who they are. Gamora especially I would love to see more about. Speaking of, I was amped up all film for the eventual fight between her sister Nebula and her, yet when you finally get it, it’s not all that great. And as for the fights, and action sequences, while the space battles all look phenomenal and are awesome, a lot of fights felt a little too choreographed.

I’m going to give this film a Jeebus score of 4.9 with a bonus of .3 for Rocket, Groot, and Drax. Rounding us out to 5.2, Multiple Viewings Required! Now I’m not going to spoil it, but I am going to go into a little bit about how I felt about the post credit scene. So if you don’t want any information, or anything that could be considered a SPOILER, please skip the rest of this article.

POSSIBLE SPOILER ZONE: Ok, in 2008 Samuel L. Jackson walked out of the shadows after the credits of Iron Man and spoke about the Avengers Initiative. This changed the landscape of the Superhero Genre. Hell the landscape of the all of cinema. The Shared Universe concept was born. After The Incredible Hulk Tony Stark walked into a bar and spoke to General Ross. In 2010 Agent Coulson found a Hammer after the credits. In 2011 Loki controlled Erik Selvig. And at the end of Captain America, Sam Jackson once again walked out of the shadows and told Steve Rogers he needed him to save the world. Then we got a montage of scenes for The Avengers. But then something changed. After the Avengers we got 2 scenes. One including Shawarma. While funny, it was the Thanos one we wanted. We loved it and were ok with Shawarma. But then, Tony Stark had a conversation with Bruce Banner, and we got nothing. And now, we again, get a cheap nothing scene! We know there is Age of Ultron Footage out there, you couldn’t give us anything? No you give us one post credit scene that gives us nothing to look forward to for the next 273 days leading up to Age of Ultron! Nothing to further this amazing universe you have created!? For this, while I originally gave a .5 for a bonus, I am taking away .2! DAMN YOU JAMES GUNN AND KEVIN FIEGE! DAMN YOU!

 

Still hooked on a feeling. Marvel releases the 2nd Guardians of the Galaxy trailer.

Marvel is firing on all cylinders these days. What started in 2008 with Samuel L Jackson telling Robert Downey Jr he wanted to talk about “the Avengers initiative” in a post credits scene of Iron Man, has grown into an entire universe. A universe that has now spread for  films, and now a 10 with Marvel’s upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy. Today Marvel has released their 2nd trailer for the upcoming superhero film. The fun thing about the Guardians is, we don’t really know what to expect. Remember back when superhero were limited to Batman and Superman. Then came the X-Men and Spider-Man, both well known so accepted. But then, then Jon Favreau, Kevin Fiege, and Marvel took a chance on Iron Man. No one really knew what to expect, but it blew up the superhero genre and introduced us to a whole new future of for the superhero film. But since then the films have been expected. Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, Hulk, Avengers. All a little more known. But the Guardians of the Galaxy? The general public doesn’t know them. Hell half the comic book world doesn’t know. So watching this trailer, you get the same feelings you got early on with Iron Man, its exciting to see where this goes.

Guardians of the Galaxy tells the story of Peter Quill as he is forced to team up a band of misfit criminals to save the galaxy from the forces of evil. The film stars Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper, Michael Rooker, John C Reilly, Glen Close, and Benicia del Toro. It will be directed James Gunn, and is set to be released August 1 2014.