Tag Archives: marvel

Warum ziehen Superheld*innen sich immer so komisch an?

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Gestern habe ich euch ja von dem Begriff „Capes“ für Superheld*innen erzählt, heute nimmt sich Diandra Linnemann die Kleidung der Superheld*innen an sich an, denn es geht um:

KEINE CAPES – oder: Vor- und Nachteil der Superheldenaufmachung

Spätestens, seit sie es mal wieder in die Kinos geschafft haben, kommt keiner an ihnen vorbei: Superhelden. Und eigentlich kennen und lieben wir sie doch alle: Iron Man, Batman und Robin, The Flash, Captain America, …
Stellen wir uns jetzt einmal vor, jemand von einem anderen Stern kommt für ein Praktikum auf der Erde vorbei und schlägt nichtsahnend einen Superheldencomic auf. Wahrscheinlich erkennt er die Helden auch komplett ohne Vorkenntnisse auf den ersten Blick.

Und woran liegt das?

An ihren Kostümen. Nicht alle tragen dabei natürlich explizit heroische Maßanfertigungen –der Hulk ist einfach nur grün – aber in den meisten Fällen sind sie allein schon an ihrer Kleidung hervorragend zu identifizieren. In den Anfängen der Comiczeit hatte das vielleicht noch praktische Gründe, denn die Qualität der Druckerzeugnisse war nicht so hoch wie heute, es gab nur eine begrenzte Menge Farben und Kosten sparen wollte man natürlich auch. Also verwendete man für Superhelden die immer gleichen, möglichst auffällig und eindeutig gefärbten Kleidungsstücke. Wer außer Wonder Woman trug denn schon Sternchen-Shorts? Außerdem konnte man durch wehende Capes Dynamik in die Bilder bringen und Bewegung andeuten. Später wurden dann verschiedene Erklärungen dafür herangezogen, warum Superhelden besondere Kleidung tragen mussten – Doctor Stranges Umhang ist magisch, Batman trägt ein hochtechnisiertes Batcape, mit dem man fliegen und Leute fesseln kann und Superman – tja, das ist eben Superman. Der braucht keine Erklärung.

Bereits im sechzehnten Jahrhundert galten Schwert und Umhang in Italien übrigens als Standardausstattung eines Kämpfers – der Umhang sah nicht nur cool aus, sondern konnte auch zur Verteidigung oder sogar im Angriff verwendet werden. Wer Beispiele dafür sehen möchte, ist bestimmt mit Filmen über die drei Musketiere oder, nur ein paar hundert Jahre später, Zorro gut bedient. (Zorro war übrigens einigen Quellen zufolge die Inspiration für Batman. Andere Quellen nennen Zirkus-Performer als Vorlage für den Cape-und-Spandex-Look. Wer weiß?)

Captain America wiederum hat zwar kein Cape, aber dafür seine Uniform mit Stern, wenigstens in den Comicheften (die ersten Bilder von „Infinity War“ lassen ja etwas anderes erwarten), als Symbol für Patriotismus und Mut, und bei Iron Man bin ich mir nicht einmal sicher, ob Tony Stark der Held ist oder nicht doch seine Hightech-Sardinenbüchse, die man natürlich auch überall und jederzeit erkennt.

Wer sich allerdings schonmal in Cosplay probiert hat, stößt schnell an die Grenzen seines Verständnisses für den heroischen Look. Die wahre Superheldenkraft scheint nämlich zu sein, dass der Spandex einem nicht konstant in die Pofalte kriecht und man sich nicht mit dem Cape versehentlich stranguliert. Aus rein praktischen Gesichtspunkte sind gerade Capes und Umhänge mal so ziemlich das Dämmlichste, was man sich einfallen lassen kann. Daran ändern auch das römische Paludamentum der Kriegsherren und der Königspurpur nichts – nicht alles, was früher gemacht wurde, war wirklich klug.

Warum trägt die typische Superheld*in eigentlich eine Verkleidung?

Ein Argument, das häufig bemüht wird, ist die Anonymität. Die könnte man zwar auch ohne Cape haben, aber abgesehen davon finde ich diese Idee gar nicht so blöd. Schließlich brechen Superhelden oft geltendes Recht, um schlimmeres Unheil zu verhindern. Und spätestens beim Phänomen des Internet-Trolls wird schnell klar, dass Anonymität tatsächlich den Mut steigern kann – für gute wie für schlechte Zwecke. (Das erklärt dann übrigens auch die absurd verkleideten Bösewichte aus den Comics.) Wenn man erst anonym, quasi „gesichtslos“ ist, entfallen die Erwartungen, mit denen das soziale Umfeld einen für gewöhnlich fesselt. Stattdessen wird das Superhelden-Outfit zur selbsterfüllenden Prophezeiung, denn wer mutig genug ist, in einem grünen Strampler herumzulaufen, dem ist alles zuzutrauen.

Für die Abschlussprüfung oder den nächsten Vortrag vor Publikum kann man aus diesem Umstand übrigens tatsächlich Nutzen ziehen, auch wenn man aus individuellen Gründen vielleicht vom Ganzkörper-Lederkondom à la „Black Widow“ absehen möchte. Politikerinnen machen das schon vor, mit dem roten „Powerblazer“, und auch andere berühmte Persönlichkeiten treten bevorzugt im gleichen (oder gleichartigen) Outfit auf, das direkt ihre Rolle definiert und entsprechende Erwartungen beim Publikum weckt – Steve Jobs‘ Rollkragenpulli oder Amanda Palmer mit ihren Corsagen und künstlerisch ambitioniert gestalteten Augenbrauen sind nur zwei gute Beispiele. Die Künstlerin Robyn Rosenberger gestaltet sogar Superhelden-Capes für kranke oder behinderte Kinder, um zu zeigen, wie stark sie eigentlich sind. Das ist natürlich keine magische Kur, aber es muntert die Kinder auf und gibt ihnen Hoffnung.

Ich persönlich bevorzuge übrigens für öffentliche Auftritte keine Capes, sondern Stiefel mit flachen Absätzen und praktisch geschnittene Röcke oder Kleider in wilden Farbmixen – so kann man mich weder aufhalten noch übersehen. Und gerade für eine eher introvertierte Person wie mich sind das ziemlich geniale Superkräfte. ^^

Die Autorin

Die meisten von Diandras Texten entstehen aus Missverständnissen, Wetten oder wirren Träumen. Wenn sie nicht gerade literarische Abenteuer im Rheinland erlebt, übersetzt sie medizinische Texte für schnödes Geld. Sie mag Katzen, Laufschuhe und Pizza. Ihren Blog mag sie theoretisch auch, aber das sieht man immer nur sporadisch.

Blog: Diandras Geschichtenquelle
Twitter: @maerchenquelle
Facebook: Diandras Geschichtenquelle – Diandra Linnemann

Wer Diandra mal live erleben möchte kann das an diesem Sonntag auf der RPC machen, wo sie aus ihrem neusten Roman „Andrea die Lüsterne und die lustigen Tentakel des Todes“ liest: Lesung auf der RPC.

Im morgigen Beitrag stellt euch Ariane von Nerd mit Nadel eine Superheldin aus einem Comic vor, den ihr am Samstag auf dem Gratis Comic Tag erhalten oder mit etwas Glück hier gewinnen könnt.

Anne
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Yesterday I told you about the term „capes“ for superhero*ines, today Diandra Linnemann talks about their clothes , because it’s about:

NO CAPES – or: Advantages and disadvantages of the superhero outfit

At the latest, since they made it back into the theaters, no one can get past them: superheroes. And in a way we all know and love them: Iron Man, Batman and Robin, The Flash, Captain America, …
Now let’s imagine someone from another planet coming over to Earth for an internship and unsuspectingly opening a superhero comic. Probably he also recognizes the heroes completely without previous knowledge at first sight.

And why is that?

By their costumes. Of course, not everyone wears explicitly heroic custom-made clothes – the Hulk is just green – but in most cases they can be easily identified by their clothes alone. In the early days of the comic strip era there were perhaps practical reasons for this, because the quality of the printed products was not as high as it is today, there were only a limited number of colours and costs to save, of course. So they always used the same, as conspicuously and clearly coloured clothes as possible for superheroes. Who else besides Wonder Woman wore star shorts? Furthermore, with billowing capes one could bring dynamics into the pictures and hint at movement. Later, various explanations were used to explain why superheroes had to wear special clothes – Doctor Stranges cape is magical, Batman wears a high-tech batcape to fly and tie people up and Superman – well, that’s Superman. He doesn’t need an explanation.

By the way, already in the sixteenth century sword and cape were considered as standard equipment of a fighter in Italy – the cape did not only look cool, but could also be used for defense or even in an attack. Those who want to see examples of this are certainly well served with films about the three musketeers or, only a few hundred years later, Zorro. (Zorro was the inspiration for Batman, according to some sources. Other sources cite circus performers as models for the cape-and-spandex look. Who knows?)

Captain America, on the other hand, doesn’t have a cape, but his uniform with a star, at least in the comic books (the first pictures of „Infinity War“ suggest something else), as a symbol of patriotism and courage, and with Iron Man I’m not even sure if Tony Stark is the hero or not his high-tech sardine tin, which you can of course recognize everywhere and at any time.

But if you’ve ever tried Cosplay, you’ll soon reach the limits of your understanding of the heroic look. The real superhero power seems to be that the spandex doesn’t creep constantly into your bottom crease and you don’t accidentally strangle yourself with the cape. From a purely practical point of view, capes and cloaks are just about the dumbest thing you can come up with. The Roman paludamentum of the warlords and the royal purple did nothing to change this – not everything that was done before was really clever.

Why does the typical superhero*ine wear a disguise?

An argument that is often used is anonymity. You could have that without a cape, but apart from that I don’t think this idea is so stupid. After all, superheroes often break the law to prevent worse things from happening. And at the very least with the phenomenon of the Internet troll it quickly becomes clear that anonymity can actually increase the courage – for good as for bad purposes. (This also explains the absurdly disguised villains from the comics.) Once you are anonymous, quasi „faceless“, the expectations with which the social environment usually binds you, are lost. Instead, the superhero outfit becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy, because anyone brave enough to walk around in a green romper can do anything.

For the final exams or the next presentation in front of an audience, one can actually benefit from these circumstance, even if, for individual reasons, one would perhaps like to disregard the full-body leather condom à la „Black Widow“. Politicians are already demonstrating this with the red „Powerblazer“, and other famous personalities also prefer the same (or similar) outfit that directly defines their role and arouses corresponding expectations in the audience – Steve Jobs‘ turtleneck sweater or Amanda Palmer with her corsages and artistically ambitiously designed eyebrows are just two good examples. The artist Robyn Rosenberger even designs superhero capes for sick or handicapped children to show how strong they actually are. This is not a magic cure, of course, but it cheers up the children and gives them hope.

Personally, I don’t prefer capes for public appearances, but boots with flat heels and practically cut skirts or dresses in wild colour mixes – so you can neither stop me nor overlook me. And especially for a more introverted person like me, these are pretty ingenious superpowers. ^^

Die Autorin

Most of Diandras texts arise from misunderstandings, bets or confusing dreams. When she is not experiencing literary adventures in the Rhineland, she translates medical texts for disdainful money. She likes cats, running shoes and pizza. She also likes her blog in theory, but you only see that sporadically.

Blog: Diandras Geschichtenquelle
Twitter: @maerchenquelle
Facebook: Diandras Geschichtenquelle – Diandra Linnemann

In tomorrow’s post Ariane von Nerd mit Nadel introduces you to a superheroine from a comic that you can get on Saturday during the Gratis Comic Tag.

Anne

Superheldinnen Teams

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Im heutigen Beitrag zeigt uns Guddy Hoffmann-Schoenborn von Fried Phoenix das es gar nicht so leicht ist Superhelden Teams zu finden, die nur aus Frauen bestehen …

Superheldinnen Teams

Superhelden gibt es derer viele und dass sie sich gerne in Teams zusammenschließen, scheint nur logisch. Dort, wo es gegen übermächtige Antagonisten geht, muss man die Kräfte bündeln, um erfolgreich zu sein! Auffallend dabei ist jedoch, dass der Anteil weiblicher Teammitglieder äußerst gering ist.

Die Teams sind entweder ausschließlich männlich oder enthalten nur wenige Frauen. Und wenn, dann oftmals nur die berüchtigte „Quotenfrau“. Besonders in den Verfilmungen fällt es auf: Justice League und die ersten Avengers-Verfilmungen etwa bestehen zu einem massiven Teil aus Männern. Immerhin: Auch das scheint sich zu wandeln. Nicht nur tauchen in letzter Zeit immer mehr Frauen in den Teams auf, auch werden nun ganze Filme einer Heldin gewidmet.

Doch eine Frage bleibt natürlich: Gibt es rein weibliche Teams? Hierbei möchte ich mich auf die westlichen Comics beschränken, womit etwa Sailor Moon rausfällt. Auch sollen es Superheldinnen bleiben – großartige Comics wie Rat Queens werden also ebenfalls außen vor gelassen. Zurück blieben da leider nur wenige Teams. Fünf derer möchte ich euch hier nun vorstellen:

Lady Liberators

Interessanterweise als Karikatur auf den Feminismus ersonnen, hat dieses Team nicht allzu viele gemeinsame Abenteuer bestritten. Immerhin wurzelt es auch auf einer Lüge: Von der hinterlistigen, als Valkyrie verkleidete Enchantress manipuliert, wurden sie damals auf die Avengers gehetzt. Mit dabei: The WaspBlack Widow, Scarlet Witch und Medusa.

Nach dieser Farce würfelten sich die Liberators erst viel später, nämlich 2008, wieder zusammen. She-Hulk trommelte Invisible WomanStorm, ValkyrieThundraSpider-WomanTigra, Black Widow und Hellcat zusammen, um die Identität des Red Hulks zu entblößen und ihn zu jagen. Obwohl erfolgreich, verkrümelten sie sich nach getaner Arbeit wieder und das Thema ist bis heute gegessen. Allerdings wünscht  sich „Valkyrie“-Darstellerin (Thor 3: Ragnarök) vehement eine Verfilmung des Stoffs. Man darf gespannt sein, ob es sich realisieren lässt!

Publisher: Marvel | Erster Auftritt: The Avengers #83 (December 1970)

A-Force

Auch hier hatte wieder She-Hulk die Finger im Spiel. Im Zuge der „Secret Wars„-Storyline scharte sie unter anderem  Dazzler, Medusa, Nico Minoru und Singularity um sich, um die Battleworld zu schützen. Dafür wurde extra ein Team aus weiblichen Autorinnen rekrutiert. Marvel war und ist sich seiner weiblichen Leserschaft durchaus bewusst und wollte durch diese Serie bewusst die Diversität fördern.

Allzu lang währte die A-Force allerdings leider nicht. Nach nur insgesamt 15 Issues und zwei Alben wurde die Serie Dank schlechter Verkaufszahlen und trotz guter Kritiken eingestellt.

Publisher: Marvel | Erster Auftritt: A-Force #1 (May 2015)

Femforce

Die Truppe Femforce (Abk. für „Federal Emergency Missions Force„) formte sich in ihrer fiktiven Historie während des zweiten Weltkriegs, um geschlossen gegen die Nazis vorzugehen. In den kommenden Jahrzehnten blieb es nicht beim ursprünglichen Team – die Besetzung wechselte stets. Doch der Zusammenhalt bleibt!

Und so hat sich Femforce zu einer langlebigen und für einen Indie-Publisher höchst erfolgreichen Serie gemausert. Aktuell zählt die Reihe 182 Issues. Eine Zahl, die sich sehen lassen kann!

Publisher: A.C. Comics | Erster Auftritt: Femforce (1985)

Birds of Prey

Ursprünglich nur ein aus Barbara Gordon alias  Batgirl und Black Canary bestehendes Zweiergespann, scharten sie bald auch Huntress, Lady Blackhawk und mehr Heldinnen um sich. Obwohl sich ab und an auch Männer anschlossen, blieb das Team im Kern weiblich. Gemeinsam wurden Abenteuer erlebt und obligatorischerweise Schurken gejagt – und das überaus erfolgreich!

Nicht nur in den Comics, auch in einer eigenen Serie brillierten sie und überstanden auch Tiefen und Reboots. Aktuell befinden sie sich in der Comicserie „Batgirl and the Birds of Prey„, die gerade mit dem 23. Issue zu Ende geht. Es bleibt allerdings zu erwarten, dass es nicht das absolute Ende sein wird …

Publisher: D.C. Comics | Erster Auftritt: Black Canary/Oracle: Birds of Prey (1995)

The Fearless Defenders

The Fearless Defenders sind eigentlich die Valkyrior, die auf der nordischen Mythologie basieren. Bereits 1966 in Thor #133 aufgetaucht, erhielten sie allerdings erst 2013 eine eigene Serie.

Dort scharen Valkyrie und Misty Knight Superheldinnen um sich, um sich nicht nur mit asgardianischen Belangen auseinanderzusetzen. Obwohl auch diese Serie von den Kritikern größtenteils geliebt wurde, schaffte sie es nur auf 13 Issues und wurde innerhalb weniger Monate aufgrund schlechter Verkaufszahlen wieder abgesetzt.

Publisher: Marvel Comics | Erster Auftritt: The Fearless Defenders #1 (2013)

Es scheint fast, als würden die rein weiblichen Teams entweder böse floppen, oder sich einer regen und langen Beliebtheit erfreuen. Zwischentöne scheint es kaum zu geben. Woran mag das liegen?

In The Fearless Defenders dreht sich viel – zu viel um ein Baby und ein Liebesdreieck: Zwei Frauen streiten um einen Mann. Dass nebenbei die Welt gerettet werden muss, verblasst daneben zu schnödem Beiwerk. Wollen Frauen etwa nur Comics über niedlichen Nachwuchs und Liebeszwists lesen? Wohl kaum. Vielleicht brauchen manche Autoren schlichtweg noch Nachhilfe in Sachen weibliche Teams und deren Motivationen und Ziele.

Auch schade ist, dass die rein weiblich besetzten Teams allzu oft von den Lesern in die feministische Ecke gedrängt werden. Dabei muss die Intention eines solchen Teams gar keine feministische sein, sondern kann durchaus auch der Liebe zu den Figuren entsprossen sein. Es sind Heldinnen, die gegen das Böse kämpfen – das können sie gerne mit feministischem Hintergrund, doch ist dieser absolut nicht zwingend. Genau wie rein männliche Teams keiner männlichen Bewegung folgen müssen – und es meistens auch nicht tun.

Ich persönlich brauche allerdings auch keine Frauenteams. Mir würde es reichen, wenn das Geschlechterverhältnis in den Teams ganz einfach ausgeglichen wäre. Wenn das zu Freundschaften zwischen den Figuren und zu interessanten Interaktionen führen würde – die gerne auch ohne romantischer Liebe auskommen dürfen.

Wie seht ihr das? Wünscht ihr euch mehr Frauenteams? Welches Frauenteam mögt ihr besonders?

Die Autorin

Guddy ist eine eierlegende Wollmilchsau und schreibt nicht nur Texte für Magazine, ihren eigenen Blog Fried Phoenix und ihren Roman, sondern zeichnet auch mit Vorliebe Rollenspielcharaktere anderer Leute, erstellt Videos für Youtube, musiziert in der Dusche und mit Luftgitarren und ist im Internet als Crazy Catlady, Diversitäts-Enthusiastin und Bahn-Nörglerin unterwegs. Aktuell arbeitet sie für Ubisoft und haust mit Mann und Katze an der schönen Küste Newcastles.

Blog: Fried Phoenix
Twitter: @Zeitzeugin42
Facebook: friedphoenix.de
Instagram: zeitzeuginguddy
YouTube: Fried Phoenix
Deviantart: Zeitzeugin

Morgen wird Ann-Kathrin Karschnik von der Erschaffung eines anderen Superheldinnen Teams erzählen.

Anne
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In today’s post Guddy Hoffmann-Schoenborn of Fried Phoenix shows us that it is not that easy to find superhero teams consisting only of women…

Superheroine teams

There are many superheroes and it seems only logical that they like to team up. Where you have to fight overpowering antagonists, you have to join forces to be successful! However, it is striking that the proportion of female team members is extremely low.

The teams are either exclusively male or contain only a few women. And if it does, then often only the notorious „quota woman“. It’s especially noticeable in the film versions: Justice League and the first Avengers films, for example, consist to a massive extent of men. At least, that too seems to be changing. Not only have more and more women been appearing in the teams lately, whole films are now also being dedicated to one heroine.

But one question remains of course: Are there all-female teams? Here I would like to limit myself to western comics, meaning that Sailor Moon is not included. They’re also supposed to remain superheroes – so great comics like Rat Queens are also left out of the picture. Unfortunately, that only leaves a few teams. Five of them I would like to introduce to you here:

Lady Liberators

Interestingly conceived as a caricature of feminism, this team has not embarked on too many common adventures. After all, it is also rooted in a lie: manipulated by the cunning Enchantress disguised as Valkyrie, they were incited onto the Avengers back then. Included: The WaspBlack Widow, Scarlet Witch and Medusa.

After this farce, the Liberators threw themselves together again much later, in 2008. She-Hulk rounded up Invisible Woman, Storm, Valkyrie, Thundra, Spider-Woman, Tigra, Black Widow and Hellcat to expose the identity of the Red Hulk and hunt him down. Although successful, they bunked off after the work was done and the topic has remained moot to this day. However, „Valkyrie“ actress (Thor 3: Ragnarök) vehemently wishes for a film adaptation of the material. It will be interesting to see if it can be realized!

Publisher: Marvel | First appearance: The Avengers #83 (December 1970)

A-Force

Again She-Hulk had a hand in this. In the course of the „Secret Wars“ storyline, she gathered Dazzler, Medusa, Nico Minoru, Singularity and others around her to protect Battleworld. A team of female authors was recruited especially for this purpose. Marvel was and is well aware of his female readership and wanted to consciously promote diversity through this series.

Unfortunately, the A-Force didn’t last too long. After only 15 issues and two albums the series was discontinued thanks to poor sales and despite good reviews.

Publisher: Marvel | First appearance: A-Force #1 (May 2015)

Femforce

The Femforce (abbreviation for „Federal Emergency Missions Force„) formed in its fictitious history during the Second World War to take a united stand against the Nazis. In the following decades it did not stay with the original team – the line-up always changed. But the bond remains!

And so Femforce has evolved into a long-lived and highly successful series for an indie publisher. Currently, there are 182 issues. A number to be proud of!

Publisher: A.C. Comics | First appearance: Femforce (1985)

Birds of Prey

Originally just a pair of Barbara Gordon alias Batgirl and Black Canary, they soon gathered together Huntress, Lady Blackhawk and more heroines. Although men joined in from time to time, the core of the team remained female. Together they had adventures and were compulsorily chasing villains – and with great success!
Not only in the comics, but also in their own series, they excelled and also survived depths and reboots. They are currently in the comic series „Batgirl and the Birds of Prey„, which is just ending with the 23rd issue. However, it remains to be expected that it will not be the absolute end…
Publisher: D.C. Comics | First appearance: Black Canary/Oracle: Birds of Prey (1995)

The Fearless Defenders

The Fearless Defenders are actually the Valkyrior based on Nordic mythology. They appeared in Thor #133 as early as 1966, but did not receive their own series until 2013.

There Valkyrie and Misty Knight gather superheroines around them to deal not only with Asgardian concerns. Although this series was also largely loved by the critics, it only made it to 13 issues and was sold again within a few months due to poor sales figures.

Publisher: Marvel Comics | First appearance: The Fearless Defenders #1 (2013)

It almost seems as if the all-female teams either flop badly or enjoy a busy and long popularity. There hardly seem to be any nuances. What may be the reason?

The Fearless Defenders is all about a baby and a love triangle: two women fighting over a man. The fact that the world has to be saved on the side is fading into mere frill. Do women just want to read comics about cute kids and love clashes? I don’t think so. Maybe some authors simply need tutoring in the matter of female teams and their motivations and goals.

It’s also a pity that the purely female teams are all too often pushed into the feminist corner by the readers. The intention of such a team does not have to be feministic at all, but can also have its roots in the love for the characters. They are heroines fighting against evil – they can do that with a feminist background, but this is absolutely not obligatory. Just as purely male teams do not have to – and usually do not – follow a male movement.

Personally, I don’t need teams of women either. It would be enough for me if the gender balance in the teams were simply levelled out. If this would lead to friendships between the characters and to interesting interactions – which are also allowed to get along without romantic love.

How do you see it? Do you want more women’s teams? Which women’s team do you particularly like?

The Authoress

Guddy is an egg-laying woolly milksow* and not only writes texts for magazines, her own blog Fried Phoenix and her novel, but also likes to draw roleplaying characters of other people, creates videos for YouTube, makes music in the shower and with air guitars and is on the Internet as Crazy Catlady, diversity enthusiast and railway nagger. Currently she works for Ubisoft and lives with her man and cat on the beautiful coast of Newcastle.

Blog: Fried Phoenix
Twitter: @Zeitzeugin42
Facebook: friedphoenix.de
Instagram: zeitzeuginguddy
YouTube: Fried Phoenix
Deviantart: Zeitzeugin

Tomorrow Ann-Kathrin Karschnik will talk about the creation of another superheroine team.

Anne

* This is a literal translation of the German term „eierlegende Wollmilchsau“ which essentially means to be a jack of all trades or a swiss-army knife.

Nerdwoche: Warum eigentlich Superheldinnen?

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Ursprünglich sollte diese Nerdwoche nur vom 5. bis zum 12. gehen, als aber eine Teilnehmerin ausfiel und sich dann drei Leute mit interessanten Themenideen fanden, habe ich sie dann doch spontan noch verlängert.

Heute dann der erste Beitrag von Michelle Janßen, der wie ich finde sehr passend in die Thematik einleitet.

Warum brauchen wir Heldinnen und was ist das Problem mit denen, die wir schon haben?

Superhelden – DC und Marvel machten sie von der heimlichen Obsession zum weltweiten Kinohit. Alle paar Monate erreicht uns die Nachricht über einen neuen Film. Batman, Superman, die Avengers und die X-Men begeistern dabei Groß und Klein gleichermaßen. Wir befinden uns in einer Zeit, in der die Fans mehr Inhalte und Specials bekommen, als sie verarbeiten können.

Erst kürzlich wurden dabei zwei wichtige Meilensteine erreicht. Mit einer fast ausschließlich afro-amerikanischen Besetzung machte Black Panther Schlagzeilen. Einige Wochen davor wurde Wonder Woman in den Kinos gezeigt – eine Superheldin alleine auf der Leinwand. Endlich.

Doch warum ist es so ein großer Schritt für uns, einen Film über eine Frau zu machen, die genauso stark ist wie ihre männlichen Kollegen? Heldinnen an sich gibt es ja. Pro Universum zwar nur ein-zwei Stück, aber sie existieren. Wonder Woman, Supergirl und Catwoman, Black Widow, Gamora, Scarlet Witch, Storm, Jean Grey und Mystique – um nur die großen Namen zu nennen.

Mit Frauen in dem stark männlich (und weiß) dominierten Genre hat man(n) sich schon länger abfinden müssen. Wieso also ist Wonder Woman so eine Sensation

Weil es kaum Filme gibt, in denen die Frauen im Zentrum stehen. Bis auf die Catwoman-Filme und die Serie Supergirl fallen mir persönlich gerade keine ein. Und selbst da sind Männer oft in großen Rollen vertreten. Größer, als die der Heldinnen in den „regulären“ Filmen. Denn wenn sie nicht gerade in ihren viel zu engen Kostümchen durch die Gegend rennen, um 30 Sekunden lang badass zu sein (Black Widow/Gamora/Storm) oder für Streit zwischen Männern sorgen (Mystique/Jean Grey) stehen die Heldinnen einfach im Hintergrund herum oder tauchen gar nicht erst auf.

Ein gutes Beispiel hierfür bieten die Avengersfilme – und das sage ich schweren Herzens, mit meiner Captain-America-Cap auf dem Kopf und den vorbestellten Kinokarten für Infinity War an der Wand.

Black Widow ist so unfassbar großartig – aber wann macht sie eigentlich was anderes, als Cap zu helfen, schnelle Autos zu fahren oder in der Gegend herumzustehen? Wird gekämpft zoomt die Kamera kurz auf ihren, von hautengem, glänzendem Stoff bedeckten, Körper, während sie ein paar Leute ziemlich cool ausschaltet und dann taucht sie erst 10 Minuten später wieder auf, wenn alles vorbei ist. Die wenige Hintergrundgeschichte, die wir von ihr haben, ist düster und wird andauernd nur angedeutet, während die Männer ganze Bücher über ihre Armee-Vergangenheit und Vater-Probleme verfassen könnten. Die anderen Frauen sind eigentlich nur dabei, damit es genug Liebesdrama geben kann – siehe Sharon. Wieso hat man ‚Ladyhelden‘ denn, wenn nicht für die Lovestory und die Brüste?

Dabei sind richtige Heldinnen so wichtig!

Denn sie geben jungen Frauen und Mädchen das Gefühl, dass sie auch stark sein können. Wir brauchen sie, um nicht nur Mädchen zu zeigen, wie stark Frauen sind, sondern auch Jungs und Männern. Sie geben uns Hoffnung und andere Kostümoptionen für Halloween als sexy Katze oder Krankenschwester.

Doch genau da geht es weiter. Nicht nur, dass die Superheldinnen entweder hauteng und schwarz tragen oder weniger Klamotten am Körper haben, als der Durchschnittsteenager auf einem Musikfestival – wenn es denn mal ein annehmbares Kostüm gibt, welches man wiedererkennt und seiner 11 Jahre-alten Nichte anziehen kann, ohne Angst zu haben, sie auf den Strich zu schicken, gibt es dies nicht zu kaufen. Zwischen 10-fachen Ausgaben von Iron Mans Maske, Captain Americas Schild und Spider-Mans Anzug findet sich absolut nichts von Black Widow und Co.

Die Gesichter der Frauen fehlen auch auf anderem Merchandise, wie dieser Artikel von Todd Kashan zeigt. Wir brauchen dringend mehr Heldinnen, aber was bringt das, wenn wir nicht mal Merchandise für die paar bekommen, die wir schon haben.

Und wenn es dann mal ein richtiges Kostüm gibt, sieht es genauso aus, wie eines der Männerkostüme – nur mit BH statt Brustplatte – weil die paar Heldinnen, die ein richtiges Kostüm haben Abklatschversionen von Männern sind.

Rezept für eine Superheldin

  • Man kopiert einen Helden in die Zwischenablage,
  • Zieht ihn komplett aus bis auf einen stylischen BH und viel zu enge Hosen,
  • Nimmt ihm die Muskeln weg,
  • Gibt ihm dafür gigantische Brüste und
  • Erfindet einen Namen, der genau wie der originale Name ist aber Lady, Girl oder She beinhaltet.

Wenn einem das zu anstrengend ist, kann man auch einfach eine Modepuppe vom H&M mitgehen lassen, den BH ein bisschen ausstopfen, sie in schwarzes Leder einkleiden und jedem erzählen, dass sie MEGA BADASS ist, wenn alle gerade nicht hinschauen.

Sharon Carters offizielle Biografie schreibt, dass sie dazu erzogen wurde Cap zu idealisieren, sich zu einer Mini-Version von ihm machte und so in die Avengers aufgenommen wurde. Und das sollen wir uns dann als Vorbild nehmen? Nein danke.

Wir brauchen starke, differenzierte Frauenrollen in diesen Filmen! Frauen, die stark sind und eigene Kräfte haben, statt einfach eine weibliche Version von Superman (Supergirl), Hulk (She-Hulk), Thor (Thor Girl) oder einem anderen Superhelden zu sein.

Gerade bei den Aliens (Superman/Thor) frage ich mich ja, wieso sie nicht nur alle weiß und männlich und super sexy sein müssen, sondern auch warum alle Frauen weibliche Versionen der Männer sind. Ich meine… what?

Bonus: Und wenn es eine Frau gibt, die einigermaßen Original ist, wird sie grün angemalt, statt sie schwarz wie ihre Schauspielerin zu lassen (Gamora). Yay Marvel!

Frauen sind mehr als Modepuppen und potenzielle Partnerinnen für die starken Helden!

Wir befinden uns in einer Zeit, in der Superheldenfilme für alle sein sollten. Trotzdem bringen wir Filme wie Batman vs. Superman, in denen ein weißer, reicher, gutaussehender Typ gegen ein Alien kämpft, welches (warum auch immer) ebenfalls weiß und männlich und gutaussehend ist, weil ein WEITERER weißer, gutaussehender Typ im Hintergrund die Strippen zieht. Es ist 2018 und die einzige Frau im Film, die wirklich was macht ist Wonder Woman und die hat weniger als 5 Minuten Screenzeit.

Die Filmproduzenten nehmen gerne das Geld von uns Frauen, in dem sie Black Widow in der typischen Arsch-zuerst-Pose auf das Plakat packen – aber uns richtige Frauenrollen, richtigen Merchandise und eigene Filme zu geben, denken sie sich lieber weibliche Versionen ihrer Männer aus, die sie nach 3 Sätzen direkt wieder ignorieren.

Wir sind mehr als nur weibliche Versionen von etwas. Wir sind für mehr gut als nur unsere Brüste und Liebeskonflikte.

Wir brauchen so dringend mehr Heldinnen aus aller Welt (nicht nur weiße Frauen, das ist kontraproduktiv, liebe X-Men-Produzenten), die tolle Talente haben und diese auch zeigen. Frauen die Hintergrundgeschichte haben, tatsächlich eine wichtige Rolle für den Plot spielen und uns ‚normalen‘ Frauen und Mädchen zeigen, dass wir genauso großartig sein können wie sie.

Mit anderen Worten: Wir brauchen Superheldinnen, die auch tatsächlich für Frauen erschaffen wurden.

Weitere Artikel

Die Autorin

Michelle Janßen ist eine süddeutsche Schriftstellerin, Jungjournalistin, Essayistin und Studentin der Germanistik und Geschichte an der Uni Freiburg. Mit 14 beendete sie ihr erstes Drama und widmet sich seit dem vornehmlich Kurzgeschichten (der erste Band erschien 2012), Kinderbüchern, Fantasy- und Geschichtsromanen und Dramen (‚Das Mädchen und der Tod‘, ‚Namenlos‘).

Neben ihrem belletristischen Schreiben ist sie im Rahmen ihrer Universität außerdem ein Teil des Freiburger Stadtmagazins Chilli und veröffentlichte bereits mehrere Artikel den Feminismus betreffend in kleineren britischen Zeitschriften und Sonderausgaben.

Blog: Büchnerwald
Twitter: mianjanssen

Morgen geht es dann weiter mit meiner Rezension zu Tina Skupins „Die Supermamas“
Anne
____________________________
Lies auf Deutsch

Originally this nerd week was only supposed to go from the 5th to the 12th, but when one participant dropped out and then three people with interesting topic ideas popped up, I spontaneously extended it.

Today is the first article by Michelle Janßen, who I think introduces the topic very appropriately,

Why do we need heroines and what’s the problem with those we already have?

Superheroes – DC and Marvel turned them from a secret obsession into worldwide blockbusters. Every few months we receive news about a new film. Batman, Superman, the Avengers and the X-Men inspire young and old alike. We are at a time when fans are getting more content and specials than they can handle.

Only recently, two important milestones were reached. With an almost exclusively Afro-American cast, Black Panther made headlines. A few weeks before, Wonder Woman was shown in cinemas – a superheroine alone on the screen. Finally.

But why is it such a big step for us to make a film about a woman as strong as her male colleagues? Heroines in themselves exist. Only one or two pieces per universe, but they exist. Wonder Woman, Supergirl and Catwoman, Black Widow, Gamora, Scarlet Witch, Storm, Jean Grey and Mystique – just to mention the big names.

People (men) had to already come to terms with women in the strongly masculine (and white) dominated genre. So why is Wonder Woman such a sensation

Because there are hardly any films that focus on women. Except for the Catwoman movies and the series Supergirl I can’t think of any. And even there, men are often represented in large roles. Bigger than the heroines in the „regular“ movies. Because when they’re not running around in their much too tight costumes to be badass for 30 seconds (Black Widow/Gamora/Storm) or cause arguments between men (Mystique/Jean Grey) the heroines just stand around in the background or don’t even show up.

A good example of this are the Avenger films – and I say this with a heavy heart, with my Captain America cap on my head and the pre-ordered cinema tickets for Infinity War on the wall.

Black Widow is so amazing – but when does she do anything but help Cap drive fast cars or stand around? Fighting, the camera briefly zooms onto her body, covered in skinny, shiny fabric, while she eliminates a few people quity amazingly and then reappears 10 minutes later when it’s all over. The little background story we have of her is dark and is constantly hinted at, while the men could write whole books about their army past and father issues. The other women are actually only there so that there can be enough love drama – see Sharon. Why do you have ‚lady heroes‘ if not for the love story and the breasts?

But real heroines are so important!

Because they give young women and girls the feeling that they can also be strong. We need them not only to show girls how strong women are, but also boys and men. They give us hope and other costume options for Halloween than a sexy cat or nurse.

But this is exactly where it continues. Not only that the superheroines either wear skintight and black or have less clothes on their bodies than the average teenager at a music festival – if there is a decent costume that you can recognize and put on your 11-year-old niece without being afraid to send her on the street, you can’t buy it. Between 10 issues of Iron Man’s mask, Captain America’s shield and Spider-Man’s suit there is absolutely nothing of Black Widow and Co.

The women’s faces are also missing on other merchandise, as this article by Todd Kashan shows. We desperately need more heroines, but what’s the point if we don’t even get merchandise for the few we already have.

And when there is a real costume, it looks exactly like one of the men’s costumes – only with a bra instead of a breastplate – because the few heroines who have a real costume are copies of men.

Recipe for a Superheroine

 

  • You copy a hero to the clipboard,
  • Take off his clothes entirely except for a stylish bra and much too tight trousers,
  • Take his muscles away,
  • Gives him gigantic breasts and
  • Invent a name that is exactly like the original name but includes Lady, Girl or She.

If that’s too exhausting, you can just take a fashion doll from H&M, stuff the bra a little, dress her in black leather and tell everyone that she’s MEGA BADASS when everyone’s not looking.

Sharon Carter’s official biography writes that she was educated to idealize Cap, made herself a mini version of him and was this way added to the Avengers. And that’s what we’re supposed to take as our role model? No, thanks.
We need strong, differentiated women’s roles in these films! Women who are strong and have their own powers instead of just being a female version of Superman (Supergirl), Hulk (She-Hulk), Thor (Thor Girl) or another superhero.

Especially with the aliens (Superman/Thor) I wonder why they not only have to be white and male and super sexy, but also why all women are female versions of men. I mean… what?

Bonus: And if there is a woman who is reasonably original, she is painted green instead of leaving her black like her actress (Gamora). Yay Marvel!

Women are more than fashion dolls and potential partners for the strong heroes!

We are in a time when superhero movies should be for everyone. Nevertheless, we feature films like Batman vs. Superman, in which a white, rich, handsome guy fights an alien who is (for whatever reason) white and manly and handsome as well, because another white, handsome guy pulls the strings in the background. It’s 2018 and the only woman in the movie who really does anything is Wonder Woman and she has less than 5 minutes screen time.

The film producers like to take the money from us women by putting Black Widow on the poster in the typical ass-first pose – but to give us real women’s roles, real merchandise and their own films, they prefer to think of female versions of their men, which they directly ignore again after 3 sentences.

We’re more than just female versions of something. We are good for more than just our breasts and love conflicts.
We so urgently need more heroines from all over the world (not only white women, this is counterproductive, dear X-Men producers), who have great talents and show them. Women who have a background story actually play an important role in the plot and show us ’normal‘ women and girls that we can be as great as they are.

In other words: We need superheroines that were actually created for women.

More articles

The authoress

Michelle Janßen is a South German writer, young journalist, essayist and student of German and history at the University of Freiburg. At 14 she finished her first drama and since then has devoted herself mainly to short stories (the first volume was published in 2012), children’s books, fantasy and history novels and dramas (‚Das Mädchen und der Tod‘, ‚Namenlos‘).

In addition to her fiction writing, she is also part of the Freiburg city magazine Chilli and has already published several articles on feminism in smaller British magazines and special editions.

Blog: Büchnerwald
Twitter: mianjanssen

Tomorrow I will continue with my review of Tina Skupins „Die Supermamas – Windeln wechseln und Welt retten“ (The Supermamas – Changing diapers and saving the world)

Anne

What’cha Watching Wednesday #13

As I’ve been putting up finishing this for quite a while now, I think, it’s about time to face the truth:
I’m bored by this segment.

I don’t really want to get rid of it entirely, but I do think I prefer doing it similar to what I did with the The Gamer’s saga and Attacking the Darkness.
In this one I’ll give you a brief overview of the backlog and starting with the next one the „Specials“ will be the normal version – hence the change of numbering, even if this one would have been #11. You will still get the occasional movie review, but I think I’ll use this segment more for talking about several things at once and not focusing on one thing alone as I do in those.

WWWWhat is this about?

Every other Wednesday I will publish a post in which I talk about (the latest or any episode of) a series or a (series of) movie(s).

In most cases this will be a collection of thoughts that cross through the different media.
You’re warned: There will be Spoilers.

Let’s start

JourneyQuest

A while after the successful Kickstarter for Season 3 I just had to re-watch the first two Seasons of JourneyQuest and with that link included I’ll leave you to read what I already wrote about this incredible show with many female leads, incredible characters and a hilarious and interesting story line.
By the way: In this campaign you had the chance to coin a new Orcish Word, which I didn’t do, I went for the „Bardic Immunity“ Badge instead. 😉

As I’ve already helped with the subtitles on Attacking the Darkness, it was a no-brainer that I’d also apply for Season 3. Let me tell you: It’s an epic (pun intended) Season and I’m proud to be a part of it, even if it’s only through contributing to the subtitles (Episode 5 and 8 are completely translated by me, Episode 9 until ~3/4 minutes and there are edits by me all over the place 😉 ). 🙂

Glitch

Another gaming related web series that was partly created by ZOE, featuring at least four of their returning cast members (Jesse Lee Keeter, Conner Marx, Brian S. Lewis and Trin Miller). The series is about a young Game Tester (Glitch) who’s bored with his life and wishes that it would become more like a video game – which of course becomes true, but different then he expected, as now he occasionally gets stuck in Glitches. The idea is fun and it has some funny moments, but also some really strange and weird ones. It is especially strange to see Keeter, the Glitch actor, out of his Rilk costume (though I have to admit, it took me a while to recognize him in The Gamers: Hands of Fate too…).

And now for the other stuff I watched in bulk, but was too lazy to discuss:

When you start a series, you have to catch up with new stuff, so of course I watched Orange is the New Black Season 4, started with Lucifer Season 2, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D Season 4 (even if I forgot to talk about Season 3 – Episode 10-17 somehow) and Elementary Season 4 and continued with Marvel’s Netflix adventures and Luke Cage Season 1.

I think, I don’t need to discuss the horrible twist we saw in OITNB, it’s been discussed enough and I still think that losing Poussey (especially that way) was a bold, yet somehow necessary, move to stir up some things that are rarely talked about. She’ll be missed in the coming Seasons… (Did anyone read the book and knows if this really happened?)

Just as bold was the whole story telling of Luke Cage. I loved it. A cast true to the demographics of Harlem (even if that meant I had to watch it with subtitles, as I did not always understand people, but that’s a small price to pay), strong female leads that aren’t just there for the eye candy, important topics, no focus on unnecessary sex- (the one that we saw was an interesting contrast to the ones on Jessica Jones) or fight-scenes, everything that was said/done got straight to the point, interesting, multifaceted characters and all in all just an incredible narration (If your German is good enough, check out Joseph’s great review here: Luke Cage). The only thing I missed were comments regarding the Hulk who „broke Harlem“ during his last visit, though that was probably already water under the bridge.
As I summarized on Twitter, I’d quite like a show with this premise:

Daredevil’s theme song, Jessica Jonesdiversity & Luke Cage’s storytelling. Anyone knows something like that? 😀

S.H.I.E.L.D. and Lucifer had some nice turns this Season (Ward finally gone, Ghostrider, Uriel & Mom, telling Linda the truth), but haven’t gotten much different to what they showed last Season(s). Elementary is basically the same old story, but a nice diversion.

In addition to that did I also complete Dead Like Me (including the Movie), Lost Girl and got up to date with The Librarians. Where the first two had interesting premises the result was soon boring and weird (never entirely got over „Der Waffelhaus“, that grammar mistake just makes my skin crawl…). Both shows could have been something great the Grim Reapers and the Succubus? Yeah, that made for interesting story material, but it focused too much on trivialities and too little on actual character development. After Rube was gone Dead Like Me went downhill, probably even before that. Just like Lost Girl made a dive down with the whole Hades-thing and love-triangles/rectangle-thing and Bo’s horrible case of Main-Character-Syndrome, it got annoying after the second iteration of her saving the day because of … reasons … Other than that was it a great show, with a relatively diverse cast and an interesting premise. Even if again all the characters I liked either ended up dead or leaving the show…

The Librarians on the other hand still needs to find its footing. It’s fun and I really liked the movies preceding it, but there isn’t much in terms of character development. What little they had was either retconed or undermined by other actions. And the Point of Salvation was one of the better time-loop episodes I’ve seen so far and a prime example of what I just said. Both Season finales (And the Loom of Fate and And the Final Curtain) had me on edge and it’s generally great story telling, if I would get some deeper connection to the characters (and Agent Baird – I always want to hear/read Bard somehow – wouldn’t turn into a lovesick puppy whenever Flint is around…)…well, we’ll see what Season 3 brings.

I also tried Alphas for two episodes (two-parter unfortunately), but it didn’t quite catch me. My venture into Hemlock Grove lasted for Season 1 and the first Episode of Season 2, but I haven’t continued yet. Maybe it’s partly due to the fact that I want to know how it’s written after Season 1, as I’d like to see if the twist is as well written, as it is portrayed and partly because that ending was kind of good and I’m not sure I like the turns made in that first Episode of the second Season. Maybe I’ll try continuing one day, who knows.

When I’m not catching up with up-to-date shows I started watching Castle. Before I’ve only seen a few Episodes here and there when I was at my Dads at the right time, but now I’ve seen Season 1-4 and a couple of Episodes of Season 5, but I’m currently taking a break as a part of me is afraid to see what will become of Castle and Beckett and how it’s handled, while the other one wants to finally finish the Advent Calendar I have planned for this year. >_<

Hence my Tweet:

Is it weird that I started watching a show about a writer doing research, while I should be writing myself?

Different movies

Most of the movies in this list came through Netflix. I just scrolled through different categories and decided to watch them on a whim. This way I watched No Filter – I believe – my first Spanish movie (with subtitles) and I was highly surprised and amazed by the concept of a timid woman just blurring out everything that was on her mind. Some people need to do that more often. 😉 It was refreshing and well made, a recommendation for everyone who wants to try something different. 🙂

I also discovered Ellen Page’s Roller Girl and Tallulah through this. Roller Girl was great and it just shows that sometimes being yourself means becoming someone entirely different and that’s absolutely okay. More people should watch it. 😀 The pretty much only thing I got from Tallulah was an earworm of Sonata Arctica’s song by the same name. It was strange, jumpy, yet still well played, but not really my kind of movie.

Neither was The Fundamentals of Caring which felt like it wanted to capture the success of Intouchables, but failed pretty horribly. I did not want to see a five minute scenery shot of a boy peeing into a beautiful lake … Most of it felt forced and meh, not even close to the French stories‘ atmosphere.

Aside from new discoveries did I also re-watch some „old“ favourites. Namely Alfie and Avengers. Honestly I have to say that I did not remember Alfie as dark as it was and with a look into the Behind the Scenes stuff regarding the original version, I now know that it could have been worse. It’s a fascinating character study and known far too little. Unlike the other that is part of a high grossing franchise. I just felt like re-watching it.

It was a tiny bit a preparation for Doctor Strange that I saw in cinema earlier this month, but not really. The movie is visually amazing. The story is nothing new, Doctor Strange reminded me a lot of Cumberbatch’s other roles (mostly Sherlock though), but was still filled with some funny jokes and stunning visual effects (though – unlike Ghostbusters – they didn’t use the coming-out-of-the-screen 3D effect, at least not that I noticed… 🙁 ). My favourite was certainly the Cloak of Levitation. 😀
Only downside for me was, that you couldn’t really grasp the time line. Some say the initial accident takes place during Iron Man 2, potentially making the „man with the twisted spine from experimental battle armour“ the one from Hammer Industries – which is denied by Marvel – otherwise this could be Rhodey after Civil War, yet he is seemingly too old and it’s also denied or unconfirmed. We also see the Avenger’s tower which wasn’t really like that during the time – it wasn’t even Stark Tower back then if I remember correctly. If it all takes place after Civil War then the training sequence is far too short. Sure Strange might be skilled and desperate to learn, but mastering something in a couple of months, when he isn’t really mastering his own hands after weeks/months of surgeries and mistrials? Sound unreasonable to me – and I know we’re talking about magic, but come on…have at least SOME realism here….
(Again, if your German is well enough, check out Joseph’s review: Doctor Strange).

On an unrelated note do I now own an official movie poster after participating in a selfie-competition by Marvel and the KaDeWe (Kaufhaus des Westens, Mall of the West) Berlin. >_<

What were you watching?

What episodes (or movies) did you enjoy/dislike throughout the week/month(s)?
Anything you’d recommend checking out?
Let me know in the comments below!

Final Words

I hope you enjoyed this little look into the different stuff I watched throughout the last months.
Which version of the WWW do you prefer? The one were I split everything or were I focus on something?

No idea when I’ll even make one of these again, but make sure to keep an eye out for more information on my Advent Calendar. 😉

And I’m off now to attend the advanced showing of Fantastic Beasts and where to find them with Unmei and one of her friends as a birthday present for her. 😉

PoiSonPaiNter

What’cha Watching Wednesday #10.1

As I told you, am I trying to get a proper schedule for this thing.
Lately I was more into watching then writing so a lot of stuff has piled up since the last time I did this, but as it is quite a lot I’ve decided to make this the update #10.1 and put some of the stuff – mostly the movies I’ve seen – into the separate post that might or might not be published next week.

WWWWhat is this about?

Every fourth Wednesday evening I will publish a post in which I collected the thoughts I had throughout the month while watching the latest or any episode of a series or maybe even a movie.

Depending on how my time allows it, the comment will also be for those that I watched that day.
You’re warned: There will be Spoilers.

Let’s start

Supernatural – different episodes

As Unmei was catching up with the series in German, I simply couldn’t help myself to invite her over to watch Changing Channels and The Real Ghost Busters together – from the amount of times I mentioned these episodes it’s pretty clear that I quite like them.
Supernatural is a series that goes to a lot of dark places, so the humour in it makes it even more worthwhile and these two episodes are some of the prime examples for this.

As I wanted to find out something about the table in the Bunker I also re-watched Slumber Party a while back. I never quite understood why they had to include Oz as another dimension and then basically drop the whole concept again afterwards (with exception of a brief mentioning in There’s No Place Like Home) and the story felt a bit filler-ish, but it was interesting enough on it’s own to learn a bit more about the Bunker and it’s history.

Heroes Reborn

When they announced that there would be another dive into the world of Heroes I was both thrilled and suspicious. The latter was heightened when it was clearer and clearer that a lot of the old cast would not return. Still, I wanted to give it a try and checked it out after missing the initial air date…

Let’s say I kind of understand why it was already cancelled after this one Season. It was interesting, but also really confusing at times. If you saw the initial show you’re used to jumping between characters and story lines, but the connections here seemed way more implausible than there.
The characters weren’t as thought through as the initial cast, I missed a lot of actual character background or development and smother bridges between them, not to mention proper motivation.
It felt rushed and without heart.

It didn’t help that the old characters were either never mentioned again (Sylar? Peter?), killed off off screen or turned into side characters and plot devises (Noah, Hero), with Matt’s turn being one of the biggest WTF-moments.

Everything simply felt like: We want to give this one last try, but we aren’t actually trying.
I do believe they tried to catch new audiences with the exclusion of the old stuff, but as a continuation it just felt too distanced from it.

Still, not everything was bad. The whole premise with the solar flare, the time travel aspect and the way the special people were treated after Claire’s declaration felt natural in a very frightening way. The camera shots and the new abilities were interesting and quite impressive – even if they felt a bit too powerful at times.

If you want to visit this world one last time: Check it out.
If you’ve never ventured into it: Stick to the old stuff until you get there.

Agent Carter – Season 2*

Where the first Season of this show was incredible, this one had a few very frustrating additions.
The last few episodes of the previous Season dealt with Peggy’s feelings for Steve Rogers and how she finally let go of him, but that is no excuse to plunge her into a love triangle … though she doesn’t really notice this herself until it’s pointed out to her towards the end of the Season.
But the audiences sees it all, the flirting, the awkwardness, the mere focus on something that should get way less screen time (I do believe I’m not romantic enough to enjoy such things).
The Geekmom’s put it into interesting words in their article: What’s killing Marvels Agent Carter – go have a look at it!
Yet, it redeemed itself when Jarvis and Peggy discussed this matter, with Peggy clearly stating that she didn’t want this.

This Season also had a few more comedic elements in addition to the quite grave story line. My highlights certainly were the interactions between Mr. and Mrs. Jarvis, such lovely and incredible people to have/protect ones back – or deal with your Flamingo. 😉

Apart from the focus on Peggy’s love life was the whole premise of this Season quite interesting. A lethal substance, another hidden organisation and incredible characters doing their best to fulfil their respective plans. Peggy is as charming and amazing as ever and I wouldn’t mind seeing her journey until the foundation of S.H.I.E.L.D. and even then I wouldn’t mind seeing more.
I just hope they don’t let it drift further away from the initial awesomeness of the first Season.

Galavant – Season 2*

As I happened to finish Season 1, when Season 2 was just waiting around the corner it was easy for me to continue with this glorious piece of entertainment. It’s just so much fun…

The narration this time around was a bit weird though. It dragged on until the last few episodes where then suddenly everything happened at once.
Still, it offered a chance for some much needed character development, even though the focus was turned away from the actual titular character onto the former „villain“ King Richard, which I don’t mind, as he is way more fun than Galavant anyway. 😀

I’m not quite sure about the the inclusion of Roberta though, as that part of the story felt rushed and was quite frustrating in regards to her attitude, which basically translated to:
„I don’t want to see you die“, so I’m going to the island of crazy cat ladies instead of fighting alongside you to help you prevent your death…
She was a capable fighter after all, at least that’s what I understood from her introduction.
That’s really a wasted opportunity for a another kick-ass female warrior like Isabella – though that doesn’t mean that I felt more connected with her this time around.

Another down point was also that they changed the actor who played Galavant’s father and it was no longer Anthony Steward Head, but Greg Wise. 🙁
Not that that made the episode any worse, it’s just always weird to exchange an actor like that.

My highlights of this Season were Richard’s displays of his naivety/ridiculousness. I really loved the scenes with the Pony with Horn and the dragon Tad Cooper is an awesome addition to the team! 😀
But there were a lot more great and fun scenes, even if a few were a tat bit too weird and/or weirdly transitioned. And you still shouldn’t think too much about the story itself, as that is basically run of the mill fairytale story telling.

Still, I really hope they’ll continue making Seasons for this one, as it’s simply feel good television at it’s best.
If you feel down, go watch Galavant, it’ll cheer you up! 😀

* I wrote the text for Agent Carter and Galavant before it was clear that both shows would get cancelled, but I didn’t want to edit them.
Let me just say: It’s the first time I was up to date with a show that got cancelled and it feels really strange knowing that you like a show some supervisors in a TV channel don’t like enough to continue investing in. Both shows are amazing in their own regard and it’s a pity we won’t see more of them unless they get picked up by a private channel-thing like Netflix or Hulu.
I certainly wouldn’t mind that. 🙂

Elementary – Season 4

This Season was a bit strange.
After the quite spectacular – for Elementary – finale it seemed like this one dragged on quite a bit.
The  addition of Morland Holmes felt strange last Season already, but now we saw way more of him. Not just because he stayed „because of the relapse“ and doesn’t even mention Mycroft until episode 9, but his story line gets stranger and stranger.
I get that he has a lot of influence and is willing to go to great lengths to get what he wants, but did they need to take up a whole Season to show that and subsequently make him Moriarty’s successor?
They pretty much just wanted Sherlock to have a proper adversary again, but that this would turn out to be Daddy Holmes is quite a far stretch – even if his son is a genius.
I understood why Tony Currans character got jealous and wanted to eliminate his competition.
But the whole thing still felt forced…
Equally forced felt the inclusion of Mittens – Sherlocks new girlfriend.
It’s great that they address a lot of mental problems within the show, but they pretty much want to stir the viewers away from the typical JohnLock that comes with the story – even if in the case of Elementary they turned John Watson into Joan Watson.

All in all a quite strange Season with not really any memorable cases.

Undateable – Season 3, Episode 10-13

For some reason did I think that Undateable was already over in December, but apparently it wasn’t and still had some episodes left, even if SaJaehwa had to tell me that. 😉

I stand by my earlier claim that this is simply is a fun concept show and I wouldn’t mind it being picked up for another Season.

Sense 8/Orange is the new Black – different episodes

Since we decided to now get a proper Netflix account I re-watched a couple of episodes of these two shows that I previously had only seen with missing subtitles. It’s great to now have the possibility to do so. 😉

Daredevil – Season 2

Speaking of Netflix: Of course did I also watch the new Season of Daredevil…

Like Agent Carter this Season wasn’t as good as its predecessor, but it was still well made.

The inclusion of The Punisher made for an interesting addition to the cast and storyline, while Electra seemed a bit out of place, to top that off with all the other stuff going on it just felt like too many topics mashed into too few episodes.

Matt’s character development was all over the place, yes he had to deal with stuff from his past, but did he have to turn ever which way the wind was blowing?
Some of the decisions he made were reasonable – saving people for their own sake – some weren’t – neglecting his duties as a lawyer and bailing during important meetings, regardless of his initial promises.
So this was quite a frustrating turn for a formerly interesting character.

Karen stayed pretty much the same, even if it felt a bit weird that she’d get accepted into Ben Urich’s old job so easily. And the weirdly hinted affection towards the Punisher was strange too.

Speaking of which: He was amazingly portrayed. You could grasp the inner conflict, but also see the blood lust and skill behind his killings. I’d even go so far as to say that his fights were more fascinating than Daredevils, especially, as he so nicely put it: When he knocks people down, they stay down.
The fights of Daredevil are interesting, but it does get quite annoying that his opponents always get up again for another round…

As for other annoyances: The whole hand-thread felt too rushed, too overly complicated and weird. Just as Electra and Stick themselves. I think within the first few minutes of her appearance I was already done with the former. She’s just not the kind of person I’d get along with, so watching her is difficult for me.

The one that surprised me the most this Season was Foggy, but here I’m simply quoting my comment from Geekritique’s Review:

To me it seemed like he was one of the most reasonable people this and the previous Season.
He made his choices – even if they hurt him – to stay away from Matt, but still protect his secret; to choose the law above the vigilantes; to stand up to his best friend and tell him what he thinks of his actions.

Of course he gets back to him or is afraid something happened to him, but you can’t completely erase a bond of friendship like they had in a matter of hours or days.

Yes, he’s the happy-go-lucky comic relief, but he is also a compassionate and caring person that uses his jokes to cheer up other people intentionally.
Yes, he’s afraid to go to court without Matt, but they’ve always been a team and he is used to being the man in the background, so stepping up to the front row was a huge and terrifying step for him – that he mastered incredibly.

And I really liked the “twist” with his meeting with Hogarth.
Maybe through working with Jessica he’ll understand Matt better, who knows?

Eastwick/The Class – Season 1

As I said did I enjoy The Punisher’s portrayal quite a bit, so I looked up Jon Bernthals other acting jobs. Which in turn brought me to the two one Season-series Eastwick (based on the novel The Witches of Eastwick) and The Class (basically a prolonged class reunion sitcom). In both series he was not at all like Frank Castle, he was pretty much the jock that didn’t want to grow up from High School.

The series themselves were (more or less) interesting, especially Eastwick.
Pretty much everyone knows the movie version with Jack Nicholson, Cher, Susan Sarandon and Michelle Pfeiffer, but this was still a refreshing new take on things.
It was also fun to see so many different actors from other series/movies in so different roles. Only now writing this part, did I realize why Rebecca Rominjin’s artistic Roxie looked so familiar, but of course she’s Mystique from the early X-Men movies. Then there is also Kat who is a timid turned confident housewife here and a ruthless Blutbad in Grimm and so forth.
I wouldn’t have minded the series to continue, but it did drag on quite a bit, especially when it came to the women discovering their powers and then rushed into things towards the end without much explanation. A lot of things were quite stereotypical and over the top, but the charm of the atmosphere and chemistry between the characters made up for it quite a bit.

The Class was one stereotype after the other as well and while it had a few good jokes and a few nice characters the overall story line was quite obvious and boring at times. Still, as the episodes were only ~20 minutes long it’s one of those easy watches no one really cares about. Plus-side: Sean Maguire was incredible as Kyle.

Moone Boy – Season 1-3

I’m not sure how I discovered this one, but it’s really funny.
I knew (and liked) Chris O’Dowd from(/in) the IT-Crowd, so I couldn’t help myself checking it out as the series sounded fun.
The story is set in the 80s/90s and follows young Martin Moone throughout is everyday adventures in a small town (Boyle) in Ireland which aren’t as normal as this sounds. Quite the contrary. Martin is the youngest sibling in an otherwise all female household (except his father, whose opinion doesn’t matter as much as he’d like to think), with three older sisters that couldn’t be more different (the Goth, the church-goer, the chubby one) and has a lively imagination and view on things. So it doesn’t come with a surprise that he has an imaginary friend called Seán Murphy (portrayed by O’Dowd) that does not always manage to stop him from doing extraordinarily stupid things.

It’s strange, it’s weird, it’s funny and you’re pretty much grinning throughout the whole episode. It doesn’t always take itself seriously, but that it is capable of doing that is brilliantly shown in the Season 3 finale.
It’s a lot of fun even if it is sometimes quite hard to understand the Irish accents of the actors – at least it is for me.

Many of the adventures are supposedly based on O’Dowds own experiences growing up in Boyle, so I’m not entirely sure what to think of that. 😀

Lucifer – Season 1

Somehow I got my hands on the trailer for this series and as soon as the Pilot aired I couldn’t help myself but to watch it three times.
It was just that good.
Unfortunately could the Season not uphold the standard they set up with this episode and it tuned down from „wow“ to „okay“ quite soon.
The characters were interesting and Lucifer himself fits easily into the line of characters I prefer watching (see here), but their actions soon became repetitive and it dabbled on like that until three quarters into the Season.
Then finally came the twist and the story picked itself up again, pushed the cop-show aside and gave us something interesting that makes you want to see how the story will continue with the next Season.

Even with the sometimes rigmarole story the actors played their parts quite well. I tried to remember what Tom Ellis was like as Robin Hood in Once Upon A Time (the first one, before Sean Maguire took over the role), but I failed because I was pretty much taken in with his charisma, snark and darkness that brought the childish, but devilish character to life. He did a fantastic job at that, even if some of Lucifers antics were quite annoying, but I don’t blame such things on the actors portraying them. Just as I wouldn’t blame Lauren German’s (I’m still not over her surname) for Chloes antics and wide-eyed reactions, but with a character like Lucifer you hardly can do anything else but stare in disbelieve.
The other characters didn’t really get that much screen time, but used what little they had quite well (I still can’t believe Amenadiel is played by the same guy that played Robin Wood in Buffy – I remember him looking different o.O ).

The highlights certainly were the moments Chloe and Dan’s daughter Trixie appeared, but Mazikeen and Dr. Linda were quite great too.
And not to forget: This show has an interesting sound track (devil-themed) and a really cool opening, even if it is quite short.

Some things were easy to see through (Lucifer’s only vulnerable while Chloe is around), others were a bit more complex (Dan was behind the shooting), but the strangest turn of events was that the angels have a mother that is/was locked up in hell. >_<
I don’t know the DC/Sandman-lore enough to know what that is about so that at least leaves me curious (and confused).

But it did make me do two things:

#1 I started reading the Sandman comics (currently at Chapter 41, which means I’m done with Fables and Reflections and A Game of You)

#2 I watched

Constantine

I do consider myself a Marvel-person and don’t really have that much connection to DC except an occasional watch of a movie or episode, so I was quite surprised to find a character like John Constantine amongst their roster.
It’s been years since I watched the Constantine-movie with Keanu Reeves, so I had pretty much a clean slate again in regards to the character.
Not that Matt Ryans portrayal of the character had anything in common of what little I remembered from the movie.

His Constantine was dark, witty and didn’t give a damn about most of the things he had to face and it was fascinating to follow. Though I do admit that some of the stuff didn’t really sit well with me.

It was weird that the character introduced in the pilot wasn’t seen afterwards, her replacement Zed felt like a mix between wannabe doe-eyed love-interest, damsel-in-distress and something that could have become an incredible psychic force. Could have been, as this was again a series only lasting one Season, though I wouldn’t have minded a couple more as it was a nice, darker alternative to other series.

Even in this short amount of time her male counterparts were better formed, had deeper backgrounds and were easier to connect to – especially Chaz (who falls again into the category „Oh, I like him“ – „And he’s dead“, but luckily with a twist 😀 ). I don’t know if this would have changed with the story lines they wanted to tell with upcoming Seasons, but well, we’ll probably never know…

I’ll probably also never know why I expect the character to be pronounced „Constantin“ (tin as in teen) and not „Constantine“, but that might have to do with my own language background – and possibly the movie where they used the German pronunciation…

As I quite enjoyed Matt Ryan in the role I looked a bit into his IMDB and Constantine’s Wikipedia page and soon found that there was a Constatine/Arrow Cross-Over episode (Haunted) which of course I then watched. He felt different – more tired – in it but it was nice to see that they bothered to bring him back instead of giving someone else the role. Maybe through this we’ll actually see more of him (even if it was said that it was a one-time-thing)?

I also watched the Torchwood episode Meat again, as I couldn’t remember seeing Ryan there, but of course, if you’re used to seeing someone with dyed blond hair and only saw them with their natural dark hair colour briefly that’s to be expected, I guess. It felt that his accent was even thicker in Torchwood than it was in Constantine, but Welsh is still a bit more understandable than Irish…

Criminal Minds: Red Team/Criminal Minds (The Fight)

Another thing I watched was the Criminal Minds spin-off Red Team, with Ryan as one of the major side characters. It was an interesting twist to the cases and procedures I knew from the „mother show“, but at the same time a bit more repetitive.

A lot of either series is done through talking, but I never noticed this much re-talking through a case in the other series. I never really connected to any of the characters, they didn’t only distance themselves from each other, but also from the audience and that’s not really a good premise to keep going (which they didn’t as the series was done after one Season as well).

I liked that they added Garcia from the original series to the mix, yet it felt a bit strange that there was otherwise no connection to them – though it was also weird that she was the only one suitable for their needs and had the time to help them anyway.

All in all: Interesting concept, mediocre realization.

Misfits – Season 1-5

As I said did we get a proper Netflix account so I had the chance to watch the five Seasons of Misfits. I had heard good things about it from Black Kat, but never got around to watch it.

It started off as a quite interesting twist on the whole „accidental superpowers“ thing and I really liked that the powers reflected the different personalities of the characters, but it drifted off into banality and who-is-shagging-whom, climaxing with a guy that could literally fuck away other peoples powers (and yes, that pun was necessary…).

The initial cast was entirely switched out by the fourth Season (similar to what happened with Being Human), but they never really build up the new ones and just added one after the other in addition to many new side characters.

They made a few strange choices (the time-travel-love-thing between Simon and Alisha), had lot’s of dirty humour (especially when they switched from Nathan to Rudy in the role of the annoying side-kick), but still managed to get a few interesting story lines (The Guy in the Mask, the Lactomancer, Rudy’s third personality).
And of course the „running gag“: The killing of probation workers.
Though by the time they got to the fourth one it was weird to see how cold and apathetic they handled the whole killing and burying bodies thing … It was also strange that they buried their own loses amongst the other people and didn’t give them a proper funeral.

Lot’s of stuff was left unexplained (Were Jess‘ and Finn’s powers still their original ones and what character trade made them get those? What did they and Rudy actually do to get into community service? Most of all: What the hell was that storm? … ) and there was only one time where they had to actually face consequences, but still got away with it.

As time travel is involved it also had the obligatory „I’m going to kill Hitler“-episode and while it was interestingly executed, I do have to say that I do not believe the British Isles would be allowed to keep speaking English … (and lay off on the Hails). But that’s a topic for another day.

The acting was incredible. Simons change from creepy kid to decent hero felt a bit rushed at times, but still natural, as if he had had it always in him. Rudy’s split personalities were also easily to distinguish by mere body language and way of talking and that’s just the best of them.
What was funny for me was my first encounter with Kelly.
My first thought when I heard her was „Heh, she sounds like Tom“ (Tom being Michael Socha’s Werwolf character from Being Human), followed by „wait a minute – did that just say Socha?“ when the amazing intro played. That made me look her up to see if they were related (as she also looks a lot like him) and yeah, now I know they’re siblings. 😀

Long story short: The first Season is good, two and three are okay, the rest is meh.
You can watch it, as it still has a few interesting things (and Rudy Two is frankly adorable), but the overall story is boring.

Different movies

The different movies I’ve seen will be covered in a separate post.

What were you watching?

What episodes (or movies) did you enjoy/dislike throughout the week/month?
Anything you’d recommend checking out?
Let me know in the comments below!

Final Words

I hope you enjoyed this little look into the different stuff I watched throughout the last months.
Fingers crossed I’ll manage to put this out more regularly, it’ll be much easier that way.

See you around,

PoiSonPaiNter

What'cha Watching Wednesday #9

As part of the Nerd-Week I present to you the ninth instalment of the What’cha Watching Wednesday, which again obviously covers more than one week.

WWWWhat is this about?

Every other Wednesday evening I will publish a post in which I collected the thoughts I had throughout the week(s) while watching the latest or any episode of a series or maybe even a movie.
Depending on how my time allows it, the comment will also be for those that I watched that day.
You’re warned: There will be Spoilers.

Let’s start

Supernatural – different episodes

Since the last time I guess I watched a few episodes, but I can’t really find them in my chronic…what I do remember is watching Tall Tales and The Monster at the end of this Book in German with Unmei. Both episodes are amongst my favourites, but it’s still weird to hear Sam and Deans German voices…(Chuck’s, Gabriel’s and Cas‘ aren’t that strange, but those two definitely are…)
A couple of weeks ago, Wren and I discussed me watching a couple of episodes in German and to pay closer attention to the translation. I didn’t manage to do much in that regard, as I was far too busy with my Advent Calendar, but I did find a few interesting changes in those two episodes above, but I’m nowhere near completing anything. When I do, it’ll probably be part of the Lost in Translation-series.

Doctor Who – Season 9, Episode 4-13 + Christmas Special

I don’t really want to go into too much details regarding the different episodes. In a way they were all incredible and I partly discussed this over at Geekritique, so to quote myself:

[T]hroughout the whole series I was torn between enjoying the episode and wondering what was going on, so the final[e] was both satisfying and utterly frustrating. 😀

Why was I frustrated by the finale?
Well…I for one enjoyed Clara’s death in Face the Raven. It was great closure. She finally overdid it, all her yearning for adventure and not caring for the consequence had finally brought her into a situation that was out of her hands.
And then The Doctor had to go spoiled child on the whole thing, go back and save her. As that was one of the topics of this Season, we more than once learned that that too has consequences. E.g. saving Caecilius – the one that frowned him his face – caused mayhem in Torchwood, saving Ashildr created another immortal (seemingly even a more powerful one than Jack Harkness) and now, through saving Clara he nearly caused the end of the universe.
So in a way I’m frustrated that he was so obsessed with her to even go down that road, but relieved that he now shares Donna’s fate regarding his memories.
Personally I do not want to see a Spin-Off with Clara and Ashildr.
The Husbands of River Song on the other hand was quite a great Christmas Special. It had a lot of laughs, a lot of emotions and was a great closure to Rivers storyline (like Last Christmas and Face the Raven could have been for Clara). The interaction between River and The Doctor was great and I wouldn’t have minded to see more of it, but that is probably quite unlikely.
All in all did I enjoy the Season. The topics were darker (and there was quite a high death-count) and it was a bit annoying that pretty much every episode had a life-or-death-situation, but it was still interesting. Now I’m curious what the next Season will bring.

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. – Season 3, Episodes 2-10

I’m not entirely sure what to think of the Season so far. It was thrilling, exciting and a lot more, but it still left a bitter taste.
Why? Because after finally killing off Ward he is brought back as new vessel for Hive (if I read that correctly). I really hope that thing didn’t take up his attitude, as that would be really frustrating…
It was great to see some character development for Coulson, though it is a drastic change, but a welcome one. Every character – except Ward, who simply walks in circles – has had some development this Season and that’s great. I’m just afraid that the story line with the Inhumans and everything goes too fast before the actual MCU movie will air in 2019(?)…

Deadbeat – Season 2, Episode 7-13

Sooo…I’m caught up with this show now and I have to say the ending was kind of surprising. Though it seems that he will have a new ghost that will be following – tormenting – him next Season…
I’m still not sure what to make of it, but I liked how there at least was a bit of character development in the last few episodes.

Undateable – Season 3

A Season full of Live-Shows, there is only one thing I can say about this: Justin credible, I mean just incredible – sorry couldn’t resist the pun. 😉
But seriously a bunch of comedians and actors performing live in front of an audience is just a lot of fun to watch. The jokes and the story might not be the best, but the whole package is what makes this show enjoyable.
And there are a few gems in the jokes, especially when they mock each others projects. Or when they mess up and try to work their way out of a fiasko of sentence. 😀
One of my favourites from A Box of Puppies walks into a bar is definitely:

Summer, Fall, Winter, Spring. I just hope we get to do this for a few more Seasons.

From what I know they get the storyline and a few additions the others don’t know, but everything else is improvised. I think that is a great concept that very well should go on for another few Seasons. 😉
Though it does remind me a little of the Schillerstraße a German comedy-show that put different comedians into a situation before a live audience and while they played out the rough plot (there was no script and they all had to improvise) a game-master gave them instructions that they had to include into their play like „hug that person without warning“, „imagine there is something in your shoe“ and lot of way more ridiculous stuff. Ah, I miss that show… had to watch an episode after writing this back in December, but I wont go into more detail.

Reaper – Season 1/2

For quite some time now I wanted to finally watch this show that I enjoyed watching when it first aired in Germany. Well, after finishing Deadbead, I just went for it.
It has a lot of ups and downs, open story lines (whatever happened to Cady? Did she really just went to New Mexico and never returned?) and quite misogynistic plot lines, even if a lot of it was used as obvious clichés that was disappointing.
The show walks on the thin line of being utterly ridiculous – over the top acting and plots – and being incredibly dark, while dabbling more into the former than the later, but those dark moments are what make this show special. I can’t really describe it, but the characters grow on you, even the minor ones like Gladys and Tony – who are pretty cool.
In the two Seasons Sam had the most character development and part of that was quite, well, scary the more the Devil tried to pursue him and drive him towards the dark side. Though I really didn’t like the Sam is the son of Satan storyline – see Cady – and am glad to read that the producers had something else in mind. Check out this interview from 2010 if you don’t know yet: How Reaper would have ended.
I certainly wouldn’t have minded a continuation.

Jessica Jones – Season 1

Describing what it was like watching Jessica Jones seems difficult. I do get why people call it feminist or even go as far as to claim that it’s sexist towards men, but it’s so much more than those labels put onto it. It deals with many important topics in incredible ways, has many great characters and their interactions are natural and understandable, though for me personally a few things went too fast, but I guess that’s life. I also couldn’t care less about the different sex-scenes, but I always consider those to be annoying as they don’t really get the story forward, even if they – as they do in this case – advance the characterization.
(VERY) Unusual for me is that I like the main character, especially because she reacts so understandable and normal. She’s not over the top, she’s not able to solve stuff because she’s the main character, no, it’s because she’s determined and willing to do whatever is necessary so other people don’t have to suffer like she did. And that is awesome.
If more series and movies followed the example of the storytelling done in this Season we’d have an incredible change in the industry, though I guess that’s more or less wishful thinking.
I enjoyed the nods towards the larger MCU and Daredevil and I’m curious how it all will continue.

Galavant – Season 1

As you know have I joined Twitter recently and there I saw stuff regarding this show that I hadn’t even heard about before. So I watched the trailer, couldn’t stop grinning and had to check it out. What can I say? Who could resist Timothy Omundson as singing King Richard in a ridiculous „comedy extravaganza“? 😀
No seriously, about half of an ~20 minute episode is taken up by musical numbers, but they’re not always light-hearted numbers. Oh, no, no, no… I think my personal highlights were two peasants (Chef Vincenzo and handmaiden Gwynne) singing about their horrible lives and short life expectancy and deciding to spent the rest of it together and squires singing about their masters, but the guest-songs by Ricky Gervais‘ and Anthony Stuart Head’s characters were also quite fun. Or other really fun numbers where the characters tell each other what they actually think.
I guess the weirdest thing is that everyone is so okay with people randomly starting into songs – though some complains are made. 😀
The characters might not be the most creative ones, but they’re fun and not always entirely what they seem to be and that’s enough for a serial like this.  They’re enjoyable and dorky and fun, so what else do you want? So far the Chef, Gareth and of course Richard (it’s in the name, really) are pretty much my favourites and Galavant himself and especially Madalena quite on the other side, though I’m not so sure where to put Sid and Isabella… We’ll see if that’ll change with the new Season….

Once Upon a Time – Season 5, Episode 1: Dark Swan

At some point I tried catching up with OUAT again, but I kind of didn’t get past the first episode. I liked the twist that the Dark Ones dagger is the tip of Excalibur, but it is also a bit disappointing that they included yet another connection. Just as they re-used the whole „we get back to Storybrook and don’t know what happened“ – though I enjoyed that even the characters commented on that. Still, I’m curious how Dark-Emma actually came to be and stuff, but I still haven’t gotten around to watch it.

Psych – different episodes

I really felt like watching Psych again, especially after watching Galavant and reading about the connection from one of the movies I’ve watched.
Psych is simply one of those shows that you can watch time and again and it remains funny. The characters and the interaction between them, the stories, basically everything. It’s a pity the show is over, but it was an incredible ending. Besides not many shows can pull of a Musical Episode like that (even though that was a Season prior to the series finale). 😀

Sherlock – The Abominable Bride

This was an incredible special, especially as from all the promos you’re made to think that it solely takes place in 19th century London, but no, we get titbits that actually move along the current day story line and that is just amazing.
I enjoyed it greatly – even though I should probably re-watch it due to the lags in the stream – and it was great seeing all those characters again and this time in a new, but still similar setting and way.
I really liked the underlying storyline with the women of the show and Molly Hooper posing as man was a really interesting addition that nearly had me fooled as I wasn’t sure if it was her or not. And of course Moriarty and the whole explanation of how he survived ingrained into the old case.
I just really liked this special…

Different movies

I’m not sure I’ve watched that many movies these past few months. If at all.
I know I re-watched Mara, but I’ve told you about that one on Monday.
After the last HGWAnime we watched About a Boy and were quite fascinated by the fact that Nicholas Hoult’s face didn’t really change that much during the last 10+ years. 😀 It’s a fun movie, a bit weird at times, but still quite fun, but that’s British humour for you I guess.
Well there also were the Christmas movies – I tried finally watching The Grinch in English, after only knowing the German version, but simply didn’t feel like it -, but I don’t really want to got into details here, as there were too many. When I’m at my Dad’s place I watch WAY more TV then when I’m in my own flat (like 90% more, as I rarely even turn it on).
Aside from that did I check out Lars and the Real Girl after reading that the titles of Supernatural’s LARP and the Real Girl and Psych’s Shawn and the Real Girl derived from it. It’s quite an interesting piece, calm and slow, but a good pace for the topic. After Coming Down the Mountain it’s another piece that deals with mental illness in a sensitive way. It’s well-played and one can only hope that in real life people would react like the family and friends of the titular character in helping him overcome his delusion instead of condemning him.
For some reason I also decided to watch Revenge of the Nerds Quadrology with Curtis Armstrong, but I guess that was mostly due to the title, this is Nerd-Week after all…
The whole thing kind of left me with mixed feelings. Though that might be due to the fact that being a Nerd has changed over the decades since those four were created. The portrayed characters were awful (embarrassing) stereotypes and each movie followed the same pattern and frustratingly one of the main characters (Lewis) always goes back to his mindset from the beginning of part 1 – except for the last movie – and denies what he actually is. Some of the character concepts were quite advanced for that time, but still not fully fledged and that’s quite unfortunate.
Somehow I believe that you couldn’t make movies like that these days, but I guess that’s what makes them so unmistakably retro – or whatever you want to call it.
Still, I’m not entirely sure, but I might have seen one of the movies before – especially the second one seemed familiar at times – as I’m not entirely sure if they aired in German television. Though from the titles you wouldn’t even be able to recognize them as sequels (<translated> German titles: Die Rache der Eierköpfe/<The Revenge of the Eggheads>; Die Supertrottel/<The Supermorons (?)>; Operation Kleinhirn/<Operation Cerebellum>; Chaos Kings). From what imdb tells me they went straight to VHS and the first was released in 1986 in Western Germany – which means I didn’t have a chance to watch that one back then, because even if I had been born, I would have lived in the GDR. But one can never be sure what some channels dig up…

What were you watching?

What episodes (or movies) did you enjoy/dislike throughout the week/month?
Anything you’d recommend checking out?
Let me know in the comments below!

Final Words

I hope you enjoyed this little look into the different stuff I watched throughout the last months. Maybe I’ll get around doing this more frequently this year, who knows.
See you tomorrow,
PoiSonPaiNter

What'cha Watching Wednesday #8

I actually wanted to write a review for Felicia Day’s „You’re never weird on the internet (almost)„, but then I noticed it’s Wednesday and I haven’t done this thing in a while. So I present to you the eighth instalment of the What’cha Watching Wednesday, which again obviously covers more than one week.

WWWWhat is this about?

Every other Wednesday evening I will publish a post in which I collected the thoughts I had throughout the week(s) while watching the latest or any episode of a series or maybe even a movie.
Depending on how my time allows it, the comment will also be for those that I watched that day.
You’re warned: There will be Spoilers.

Let’s start

Supernatural – different episodes (Watch Date: 24./31.08. – earlier last week?)

Wren again inspired me to watch at least one of the following episodes. So thanks, I guess? >_<
I started these random re-watchs with It’s a terrible life. It’s an interesting what-if episode, but as  someone working in IT and fan of the IT Crowd my personal highlight was Sam sitting in IT support and asking the caller: „Have you tried turning it off and on again?“ I grinned like an idiot at that. This episode was also the introduction of Zachariah whom I had previously – knowingly – only seen as coroner Woody in Psych. I have to say: He does a great job at playing the creepy angel. 😀 I also liked that they turned their names from „Winchester“ to „Smith“ and „Wesson“ and of course the inclusion of the Ghostfacers. Another episode that I watched after I’ve noticed that I messed up their appearances in my Season 3 summary. Through this I finally remembered to check out why Ed (AJ Buckley) looked so freaking familiar to me: He played a minor role in one of the movies that influenced me quite a lot in my teens (see movie part). Oh, and it was quite confusing to find out what he looks like by now, though I’m still trying to figure out what the movie is called where he looks/dresses like the singer from Korpiklaani
Anyway, in another sitting I checked out As Time Goes By as a reminder for the whole Henry Winchester/Men of Letters story line. I kind of enjoyed this episode and I really like the Bunker. So as they hadn’t opened it I had to watch Everybody Hates Hitler again as well. The general story line of the episode is interesting and it is generally quite fun. I like the rabbi and the golem and would have liked more information on them, but I’m just generally quite tired of movies/series restoring to use Nazi-themes for their narration… (We had an off topic discussion about this on wren’s side; starting about here)
Well, as I already watched a time-travel episode, I decided to take another look at The Song remains the same and even though my earlier question about this episode cleared up by now (it was revealed that Cain had offspring) there is now a new one. At one point Michael discusses Lucifer and mentions that he „practically raised him„. Soo… were (Arch)angeles created as babies or is he talking about the time after they imprisoned The Darkness and were starting to form their own personalities after simply following orders? I hope its the latter, as otherwise this would be another case of forgotten continuity…
I actually wanted to watch a different episode but ended up watching Pac-Man Fever. It was a Charlie episode and I liked it, except the ending, I’m not that good with mums currently… So, I needed something good and positive to cheer me up and took another look at Hibbing 911. I just really like Donna and Jody and I’d be more than thrilled if the Fandom plans to make a spin-off with them would become a reality.
For some reason did I want to check out the Metatron and Kevin episodes so The Great Escapist and Reading is Fundamental were next on my list. With them the tablets were introduced as well and I think those are quite an interesting concept. In a twisted kind of way do I like Metatron’s appearances, I can’t really explain it…maybe I just enjoy his conflict of – I don’t want to get involved in this – I want everyone to do as I say or maybe his snark, I don’t know. I liked Kevin, too, though I felt sorry for him a lot of times. And I think it’s a pity that they didn’t explore on the whole prophet thing more…
At some point I wanted to watch one of the Benny-episodes again, so I picked Citizen Fang. A very mean episode, with a quite creepy Jon Gries as Martin. I like Benny…
The last one on this list was a very strange watch for me, as Unmei and I watched Changing Channels in German the other day (It’s by the way called „Wie im Himmel, so auf Erden“, a shortened quote of Gabriel’s line: „As it is in Heaven, so it must be on Earth“).
It was really weird… I mean, I started watching the show in German back when it first aired, but I did not remember it like that…
I especially did not remember that Sam was voiced by the voice actor of Dragonball Z’s Krillin – which caused me to randomly exclaim „Krillin!“ at some point during the episode, yes, I do stuff like that, when I remember from where I know an actor or voice… – and Dean by Tenshinhan (or Tien Shinhan in the English dub), that I suspected before checking out. Castiel had too few lines to let me recognize, that his voice usually is heard with Jude Law, though it did sound extremely familiar. Interestingly his voice actor also voiced Curtis Armstrong (Metatron) in a different role, just like Gabriel’s voice actor, who also happens to be the father of Germany’s (possibly) most used, all-round voice actor David Nathan (Armstrong was also voiced by Spongebob Squarepants‚ for two roles). Okay, I’ll stop now… It might be apparent that I enjoy talking about voice actors… (Charlie’s does a lot of Anime stuff, by the way)
Aside from that is this episode one of my most-watched ones. I just really like the humour and the big reveal and stuff. Simply one of my favourites. 😀
Though Gabriel probably didn’t get that good of a face-change if Cas still recognized him…maybe it’s the soul he can’t change or something like that…
Oh, and one more thing: To get the quote right I looked at the transcript and discovered this funny comment from the transcriber:

The fire goes out; apparently in this world water extinguishes grease fires instead of spreading them. – 5.08. Changing Channels Transcript

Grimm – Season 4, Episode 15 -20 (Watch Date: 16./17.09.)

After quite some time did I take another try at watching Double Date to catch up with Grimm. I still don’t like the sub-plot with Adalind, with the episodes so far the one with Juliet looked better, but I unfortunately knew about the final outcome of that one. 🙁
So knowing the remaining episodes now there are a few things that bugged me about their strange narration.
Juliet’s turn from good to bad is way too fast and too weird. The characters that are usually so open to new things, that accepted supposedly bad Wesen into their group (Blutbad/Fuchsbau), now, when Juliet needs them most, despise her and want to change her. They don’t even give her a chance to adapt or help her in any way. All they want to do is make her go back to the way she was. I can totally understand why that frustrates her, still don’t get much of her choices, but still. It could have been good. It could have been so much more than that. Instead they turn Adalind into a semi-human again, she is still pregnant and for some reason everyone jumps on the bandwagon to help HER. I really don’t get it…
They also could have done more with the new royal – instead of letting him kill Kelly and then killing him off. He was fun…
With Juliet and Kelly dead, I kind of feel bad for Nick, though part of me wants to tell him that the whole thing is his fault, for not helping the woman he said he loved…
And what was up with the Jack the Ripper-Ghost hijacking and the devilish arms? That didn’t make a lick of sense. Why did he kill Wesen? Why did he kill Henrietta? Why was this story involved anyway? o.O

Doctor Who – Season 9, Episode 1-3 – (Watch Date: 19./30.09./3.10.)

Season Nine has started!
I was curious what this Season would bring as it would mostly consist of two-parters, but I kind of like the pacing. It reminds me of the few old episodes that I’ve seen by now. It’s really something different and takes a little getting used to, but still enjoyable.
In The Magician’s Apprentice The Doctor has one of his most epic entries: Riding a tank into a medieval axe-fight, while playing an electric guitar. That really reminded me of the guys from Sabaton and their stage decoration. 😀
I also enjoyed the Davros-dilemma of the episode – Note to self: Finally watch the one with the Fourth – and of course Missy was quite fun again. The first part had an interesting cliff hanger, but I didn’t fear for Missy and Clara. The Witch’s Familiar then finally explained how Missy escaped, which is quite a neat trick she has there. For a short moment I really pitied Davros and wanted to believe him, while something in the back of my mind screamed: They wont kill him like that! Well, that voice was right and I enjoyed the solution to the dilemma that seemingly created the Daleks ability to beg for mercy. Still, a lot seems to be left unexplained and that’s just unfortunate… (How did Davros survive? Is he even the Davros from Stolen Earth/Journey’s End? How did all these different Daleks come together? And why do they just dump the old ones into the sewers? What’s with the other planet from Asylum of the Daleks? What’s Missy’s plan with the Daleks? What did Missy want to gain by making the Doctor kill Clara?)
Under the Lake had a weird start, as I really didn’t understand Clara’s enthusiasm and was right there with the Doctor when he asked her to get a new boyfriend. She’s using these trips to distract herself from mourning and in the long run that’s not a good thing…
I liked that they included a deaf character/actress in the cast and the story so far seems interesting, even though I hope the theme of everything being a life and death situation will cease soon. It’s kind of annoying as you know there are still a couple of more episodes to go and they won’t kill of the main character before that – besides there aren’t any news on Capaldi already being replaced – so the shock factor is way off in those episodes.
Oh, and I kind of like the Sonic Sunglasses, miss the Screwdriver a bit, but they look cool. 😀 And I really like the Doctors new dressing style, I like the hoodie/jacket…

The Musketeers – Season 2, Episode 8: The Accused (Watch Date: 22.09.)

I’m confused…the break was too long.
Mark Warren is creepy…no comparison to his role in Doctor Who.
I liked Porthos and was annoyed by Aramis.
And why did I expect Rochefort to still be in the room and make a snarky comment when Athos and Milady left the hidden cupboard? o.O

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. – Season 3, Episode 1: Laws of Nature (Watch Date: 30.09.)

Confusing yet somehow satisfying start into the new Season. They showed Jemma! And Fitz was amazing. And I’m really curious how this Season will continue…

Deadbeat – Season 1/2, Episode 1-6 (Watch Date: 4.-6.10.)

Like Undateable I am not entirely sure what to make of this show. I saw the add for the German version, checked out the English one – as it stars Tyler Labin from Reaper – and half into the second Season, I still think this is a very weird series. It’s still fun, though. And Lucy DeVito is soo cute… Still, twenty minutes an episode are far too short to get some actual grip on the characters and the world. It got better by now, but it’s still quite lacking and very random…

Different movies

I felt in the mood to watch Midnight in Paris again. The first time I saw it, I went to the cinema in Uetersen with Janzy for special English screening, I gave her as a birthday gift. We both like movies and with Tom Hiddleston as one of the side roles and the story sounding interesting and the whole setting in Paris with all the old writers, we quite enjoyed it. Though watching it again I realized that I seemed to have known Woody/Zachariah (Kurt Fuller) before I saw him in his TV roles. 😀 I really like the atmosphere and narration of the movie. It’s not just some story that focuses on one thing only, no it takes you on a ride through Paris, it introduces you all these talented people (I probably would enjoy this part even more, if I actually recognized them), it shows the struggle of an aspiring artist, the downsides of a relationship with someone very different from yourself and it gives you something to think about, regarding everyone’s „Golden Age“. Just a wonderful movie.
As I’ve seen a lot of positive comments regarding Jensen Ackles in Ten Inch Hero I thought I might as well check it out. It was a fun watch and explored some unusual topics. Half way into the movie I recognized Adair Tishler (Molly from Heroes) and she was just as cute a kid, as she is in the series. Still, there were a few weird choices: Last time I briefly discussed the whole changing yourself for someone else thing. In this movie it wasn’t the girl who got the change, but the boy. All throughout the movie he ran around confident in his appearance with mowhawks in different colours (I’m not entirely sure what the pace of the movie was, so it seemed, like he changed them daily…) and styles, piercings and everything. But to get his love interest he cut his hair short and took out the piercings and put on some „proper“ clothes. It’s just so frustrating. If she loves him, she loves him with the hairdo and piercings and everything, not because he somehow discovers to dress „decently“. He looks so uncomfortable…
They also had a sex-scene that let to a brutal boyfriend-theme, but I think it would have been enough to show less of that part and still get the story across.
And what’s up with the naked wedding?
As I wrote earlier did I discover in which movie I saw AJ Buckley before: The Forsaken (the German title also includes „Die Nacht ist gierig“/“The Night is Voracious“). It’s an old vampire hunter road movie thing, that isn’t even well done, but it’s still special to me. I do believe this is one of the first movies I’ve ever watched in the „horror“ genre and I think I was still about fourteen when watching this PG 16 movie late at night, hoping that my parents/my mum wouldn’t come in and ask me what I’m watching. In a way it shaped my interests quite a bit. Besides Buffy it took part in creating my interest in vampires (and other creatures) and their different backgrounds. The characters I liked most can somehow be found again in later favourite characters (Pen and Nick if anyone is interested >_<) and the title even became a reference for the family name of a branch of characters from Michael’s story. When I watched it again, I feared I wouldn’t like it as much as I did back then, but I still did. It’s fun in a weird kind of way. Pretty trashy, with lots of weird camera movements, but still great in a way.
Towards the end I had this memory that one of the characters would start singing „Enter Sandman“ by Metallica any moment now and put it aside, but then he ascended the stairs and the scene actually happened and I was happy that I remembered that correctly. So the soundtrack is also part of why I like this one so much. 😀

What were you watching?

What episodes (or movies) did you enjoy/dislike throughout the week/month?
Anything you’d recommend checking out?
Let me know in the comments below!

Final Words

As I also found out that the actress of Becky from Supernatural played Brigitte in the Ginger Snaps-franchise I decided to re-watch those movies again – or finally watch the third part, that’s been lying around for ages…
Well, we’ll see when I’ll get around to do that and write another one of these…
PoiSonPaiNter

What’cha Watching Wednesday #7

I didn’t really feel like watching any series and focused more on old movies in the past months, but I still want to present you the seventh instalment of the What’cha Watching Wednesday, which again obviously covers more than one week.

WWWWhat is this about?

Every other Wednesday evening I will publish a post in which I collected the thoughts I had throughout the week(s) while watching the latest or any episode of a series or maybe even a movie.

Depending on how my time allows it, the comment will also be for those that I watched that day.
You’re warned: There will be Spoilers.

Let’s start

Supernatural – Season 2, Episode 15: Tall Tales (Watch Date: 11.06.) and others

While writing my Season summary for Season Three, I came across the Trickster again and decided to re-watch his episodes(, but I didn’t feel like changing the title much more than adding „and others“ as I had included a date on the other episode). I really enjoyed this character and his episodes were quite fun in a weird way. He really had had potential, but then again, so did many characters on the show…
I just really like the struggle the Trickster/Gabriel portrays, he claims to not want anything to do with Lucifers and Michaels fight, yet he does everything in his powers that Sam and Dean accept their roles in it and shows them time and again that some things just need to happen. He’s great and as I’ve discovered recently a lot of fun to write, which might explain that my simple One Shot idea kind of turned into two Multi-Chapter stories…

Incidentally I couldn’t get myself to watch The Hammer of the Gods, I just couldn’t…apart from the fact that there is so much wrong with that episode, did I just not want to see the outcome of it again…

I also watched several other episodes, though I can’t remember which ones, Season Four/Five stuff with Lucifer, Chuck and the Horsemen I believe. I also took some suggestions from wrencollins in this matter and just watched whatever I felt like.

Outlander – Season 1, Episodes 1-7 (Watch Date 6./7.6.)

As it was about to air in German television I felt like checking this one out. We’ll it is an interesting concept, the characters aren’t bad and somewhat interesting, but as you can see from the watch date, have I not gotten myself to continue since June…

My dad has probably seen more episodes in German than I have in English…

Sense8 – Season 1

I let myself be goaded into watching another series again. And I do not feel bad about it.
This show is incredible.
Actors from the actual countries the story plays in, with the actual accents, filmed in the actual locations. Really great.
And the switch between the Sensates, when they changed the perspective in a conversation or one took over and handled the situation of the other, was quite interesting, especially in the finale. I really liked the finale, though I’m afraid it’s hard to top.

I can’t even say who my favourite character is, I kind of liked all of them…Riley and Capheus are just incredibly adorable and cute, Lito and Will have quite hilarious moments, whereas Sun and Wolfgang show their badassery and Nomi and Kala, just show off their smarts, not to mention Freema Agyeman and Naveen Andrews, who made for interesting side characters.
I like the whole pretext of the show, its realization, the characters, pretty much everything…I can’t wait for Season 2 to be completed.

I am fairly certain that I might have a separate post for my Lost in Translation-series about Wolfgang – even though I have to say that they picked one of the most horrible sounding names here…
In German Wolfgang is fine, but in English? Just no. This is one of those names that, as a German, you don’t want to hear pronounced in an English way…

Speaking of translations…well…let’s say: I didn’t watch it directly on Netflix, therefore a lot of stuff is lost to me, as it did not have the translations with it, especially the Sun-focused episode, which was a pity.

Orange is the New Black – Season 3

Same problem as above, a lot of it was lost, as I didn’t have any subtitles. This was quite frustrating in the background episodes for Gloria, Chang and Leanne.

The overall storyline of this Season was a bit disappointing and boring – especially everything that concerned Piper. I just can’t stand her.
I really enjoyed the looks at the different inmates pasts again, I feel like this is always the most interesting part of the show. It was also fun to find out that another character spoke German, even if it was an Amish variation of it, that I didn’t really understand – though I believe it was the bad quality of the stream and my head still being stuck in English-mode…
The thing that bugged me most was probably Red. She was one of my favourites in the previous Seasons, but now, I’m not so sure any more. I also didn’t really understand the whole thing with Norma

So in conclusion: This Season wasn’t as good as the others, but it was still fun.

Merlin – different episodes

I felt like watching a bit Merlin again and I think Gwayne and Servant of two Masters are my most watched episodes of the series by now. Another one is The Once and Future Queen that I this time even watched in German with Fairy during my recent stay at her place. I just love Merlin’s rant in that episode and wanted to see how it was done in German. This show is just always fun to watch.

Lasko – different episodes

For every non-German: Lasko – Die Faust Gottes (The Fist of God) is a German show from 2009/10 about a secret organisation of fighting monks (Pugnus Dei – hence the title) that fight another secret organisation Ares and other people who want to do nasty things to those who can’t defend themselves. As this show was produced by a station known for its love of scripted reality and casting shows, you might imagine the seriousness of the production. Lasko is a totally ridiculous show, with the titular character constantly loosing his Habit to fight the foes showing off his muscular chest. He has a chubby side-kick that is good for quips and wordplays and there are so many tropes and what not, that it gets fun to watch because of its terribleness.

The show started shortly after we started writing Warlords and Fairy and I made it a tradition to watch each new episode together and discuss it directly via ICQ. We had a lot of fun doing that and we still have fun watching the show now and giving off the same comments we used to make. We just love Gladius. 😀

Buffy – different episodes

Just as the ones above: I just felt like watching some episodes of Buffy and I do believe I even caught some I haven’t seen back when it was still on television. Well, it’s also interesting to re-watch it in its original language and not in the translated version I grew up with. Does anyone else consider Tabula Rasa one of the shows most hilarious episodes? 😀

Different movies

As I said in the beginning did I feel more like watching movies than series in the past few months and I came across several quite interesting pieces and some really weird choices…
As I don’t want to go into that much detail I’ll simply make a name-dropping description here and say a few things about them.
One last comment before I start: When I consider actors to be interesting, I like to check out their other work, so some of the choices came from that perspective and I probably forgot to add some of them.

Lucifer (Mark Pellegrino) and Castiel (Misha Collins) in the same movie? Of course I had to check out Moving Alan, though I’m not entirely sure, what exactly I watched there… It is a weird mixture of Weekend at Bernies and other things I cannot name, just with two girls, a dead-turned-paralysed husband and an insane actor in the middle of the desert… it’s just weird…

Not much better is Par 6, another of Collins‘ older movies about a family obsessed with golf, though it has some more fun scenes than the other one. Downside for me: Their accents were hard to understand sometimes.

As it was in his imdb list as well I took a look at Girl, Interrupted, his role here was only a minor five seconds part and the focus was on the main characters played by Winona Rider and Angelina Jolie. I don’t really like Jolie as an actress, but in this role she was quite creepy, well, the whole film is strange and creepy, but still interesting.

What I, however, noticed is that Collins‘ minor or side character roles seemingly often include being the love interest or some kind of random hook-up for one of the main character. Which is kind of best shown in Over Her Dead Body, were he really is just that – same in Girl, Interrupted. Makes you wonder about his role in Supernatural… 😀
Anyway, that movie was quite fun, the idea wasn’t new – ghost fiancé stalks her ex and tries to convince him to not fall in love with another girl -, but doing the whole thing through a medium made for some quite funny scenes. And Paul Rudd did a good job at playing the confused and torn ex, but I think I have yet to see him in a role that I didn’t enjoy watching, which is in stark contrast to Jason Biggs, whose role choices I do often question, guess someone just has to do those things as well…

One of my, if not the, highlight/s of this watching streak was 3 Blind Saints, with Richard Speight Jr. as main character. This movie is hilarious and if you haven’t seen it, you should totally check it out – if you did, you should watch it again. It has a lot of slapstick and situation humor, but here are some of my favourites:

  • Several people try to get an out of jail free card, by claiming that they were saved by God – one of them is an atheist
  • The main characters end up having to pretend to be ministers in the local community with the atheist having to fill the role of the pastor.
  • Some very strange argumentations and utterly ridiculous prayers and sermons.
  • A very strange meeting with God
  • A couple of guys in drag – one of them unwilling to shave off his beard – trying to get a confession out of a bad guy, with a kink for girls in short skirts, who knows its them in drag and plays along.

I watched it for a second time on Sunday and I could watch it again, it’s just so much fun. It’s far from being perfect and has a lot of flaws (e.g. a missing and re-appearing beard/stubble), but it’s just one of those funny feel-good movies.

I grew up with the Harry Potter movies, so when I got the chance to pick up Driving Lessons
with Rupert Grint, I didn’t hesitate long. This movie has an interesting take on different things: The protected life of an only child, the downsides of growing old alone, growing up and being an artist. It’s a nice watch. Emma Watson’s The Secret Life of a Wallflower on the other hand took a more depressing turn. It shown some light on different usually left out problems (depression, suicide, homophobia, …), but it felt like they still left out things that would have made it more clear and more rounded. That’s a bit disappointing for an otherwise good movie. Though I somehow can’t remember the ending or I am at least not sure that what I remember is the ending…

On a similar depressing note was Coming Down the Mountain with Nicholas Hoult, but here I really liked the conclusion, even though some of the things that happened throughout the movie were quite creepy. It’s an interesting take on the struggles to live with someone who suffers from the Down Syndrome.
For some reason I decided to watch What’s Your Number? with Chris Evans and I’m still not entirely sure why I did. The movie isn’t totally bad, but it has some quite strange moments. Though not as bad as Totally Blonde, where my memory kind of betrayed me… I remembered it as a fun movie with singer Michael Bublé, but it turned out to be something entirely different and I’m not sure how I made it through the movie, as some decisions by the main character were utterly frustrating to say the least. Speaking of frustrating main characters: The Devil Wears Prada. I really don’t get the appeal of these kinds of movies where a woman with a totally okay style and personality changes everything in order to become the „better“ person for someone else (here: her boss) and loses herself in the process. Not my type of movie, but I like Anne Hathaway and Glen Close and felt like watching this again…

Tumblr is a great what-to-watch source when it comes to their favourite actors. So I checked out The Losers, with Chris Evans, Zoe Saldana, Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Idris Elba in main roles. It turned out to be one of the DC-adaptations that I actually enjoyed. It was fun, had some good action and a lot of logical flaws, but still a nice watch.

Before we went to Fairys place we stayed at her parents place and watched a French/German version of Beauty and the Beast from 2014 with her boyfriend and Fissel (her sister) that just aired on television, though we kind of missed the beginning of the movie, twice. We still had a lot of fun watching it and commenting on different things, but the whole experience could be summed up in this quote from Fairy, that we put on our Facebook-Page:

The movie is fun, but I don’t think it was planned to be a comedy.

More quotes (including stuff about beagles and rose tendrils) can be found there, though they are in German, if you’d like a translation, let me know.
We did consider, however, if we should record ourselves watching movies, so that other people can be part of our ridiculous conversations. 😀 Would anyone be interested in such a thing?

I also re-watched the Underworld movies with Unmei. We are three movies in and the fourth, The Awakening, would then be new for me as well. In the first three films it is nice to follow the different connections among them, but we kind of had large pauses between watching them, so some things weren’t that easy to recognize. It doesn’t matter how often I see these movies Lucien is still my favourite character of the four parts. Still, I don’t get how Michael Sheen could agree to betray the Lycans and become a sparkling vampire. o.O

Also on Speights list I found Noobz a movie about a Gaming Tournament and it’s participants. It took me a while to recognize Jon Gries beneath that god awful mullet, but it was indeed him who had a very strange and short conversation with Speights character and later on a tiny bit larger role in the overall storyline…
The movie is a very strange look on gamers and they used a lot of stereotypes and weird characters, but it still was somewhat fun. The effort in showing this kind of subgenre reminded me a bit of Knights of Badassdom, which is way more fun as it has a quite awesome soundtrack, that Noobz can’t compete with by having only two rock numbers. Still, when it comes to movies/series depicting gamers and nerds do I prefer Felicia Day’s The Guild and Zombie Orpheus‘ The Gamers– series. They feel way more accurate and genuine than the other stuff out there, which is kind of obvious as they are made by and for gamers…

Well, I didn’t only watch old stuff, I was also in the cinema a couple of times.
At first I thought I wouldn’t manage to see Mara und der Feuerbringer (Mara and the Firebringer), due to some scheduling issues in the marketing, but then I found out that it was screened in Greifswald and I took Schmusi and Anna from the HGWAnime with me to see it and we had a lot of fun. Finally a German Fantasy movie that isn’t as stoic and flat as German movies tend to be, has interesting characters, an interesting plot and funny dialogues. With songs like Echter wahrer Held/True Genuine Hero by Schandmaul it also has a nice soundtrack. Schmusi first thought it was Jan Josef Liefers doing the singing until I told her it was the singer of one of the bands that first got me hooked on Metal. 😀
Anyway, if you get the chance: Definitely check this one out!

I also saw Melissa McCarthy’s latest flick Spy and laughed a lot, though we were wondering if the age level was appropriate for that movie, as it did have some nasty sequences. I went to check out Mad Max: Fury Road after all the praise it got on Tumblr and I wasn’t disappointed. The strange and staccato like cut of the movie was a bit confusing, but it was still fun to watch. More fun, however, was Ant-Man that I originally didn’t even want to see, but went along when Fairy and her boyfriend asked if we’d go and see it. After the changed tone in Age of Ultron this one was more focused on the humour than the seriousness of it all. I don’t regret seeing this one after all.

What were you watching?

What episodes (or movies) did you enjoy/dislike throughout the week/month?
Anything you’d recommend checking out?
Let me know in the comments below!

Final Words

We’ll see when I’ll write another one of these…

PoiSonPaiNter

What'cha Watching Wednesday #5

Without warning I skipped two weeks of this thing, but not because I didn’t watch anything, but because of my Dad’s and, well, my Mum’s birthday. I just didn’t feel like writing this. So, with some delay I present to you the fifth instalment of the What’cha Watching Wednesday which again covers more than one week.

WWWWhat is this about?

Each Wednesday evening I will publish a post in which I collected the thoughts I had throughout the week while watching the latest or any episode of a series or maybe even a movie.
Depending on how my time allows it, the comment will also be for those that I watched that day.
You’re warned: There will be Spoilers.

Let’s start

Supernatural – Season 10, Episodes 19-21 (Watch Date: 23.04./01./07.05.)

The Werther Project was a strange episode. On the one hand did it give us another look at the Men of Letters and of course the return of Benny, but on the other hand did it just re-iterate things we already knew. We know Dean has pretty much given up on getting rid of the Mark and Sam shows more and more ruthlessness in his pursuit to still try. Still, nice to see Benny again – even though he wasn’t the real Benny – and his discussion with Dean was well handled and interestingly put back in Purgatory.
When I read the title for Angel Heart I expected something different. In a way did it concern Castiel’s heart, but not like I thought it would. Just some episodes ago in The Hunter’s Game we saw the return of Claire Novak, the daughter of his vessel and now she is back and searching for her mother. Well, they find her, but it’s not a happy re-union… Just let me say that it was nice to get some closure on this part of Castiel’s background, even though I’m not entirely sure it was necessary to get rid of Claire’s Mum like that, but I’m probably just a bid touchy right now when it comes to Mum’s.
Additionally, it again showed that not all angels are alike and that there are bad kinds that would rather harm humans than help them.
As for Dark Dynasty, apart from the ridiculous fact that they turned the already useless addition of the Styne family into the FRANKENstein family and that it was already obvious that keeping stuff from Dean would turn out bad – because it always does, is there only one thing I have to say about this episode and especially about its end:

NOPE.

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D – Season Two, Episode 14-22 (Watch Date: April/May)

As I expected last time did I catch up with this show to be prepared for Avengers: Age of Ultron, though as the release in Germany was before the one in the States (again) the last piece of the puzzle was still missing when I went to the cinema.
Anyway, the episodes were again a roller-coaster. We finally found out, why May is called the Cavalry, we learned more about Skye and the Inhumans and many more.
Skye’s story was interestingly handled and even though there was a different kind of Mum-problem as in Supernatural, I really enjoyed Skye’s last interaction with her dad.
They also finally made good on the relationship between Fitz and Simmons, but in a weird way. While they finally interacted and talked again, was there still not the same spark that made them special in Season One. I really liked them back then, but now that Simmons has changed to a more cold-hearted and calculating person this is all really strange. It’s not like I want them to be together – that would ruin the beauty of their relationship, though that is already ruined – but I just want them to be normal around each other again and the little nods with the sandwich in Afterlife or their general interaction these last few episodes. Though, seemingly the love-bug has latched on Simmons from seeing Hunter nearly lose Bobbi and she seemingly had a change of heart regarding Fitz’s confession from the last Season finale and though I’m inclined to refer to my earlier assessment of Dark Dynasty to how they coped with it in this finale…
Apart from that do I still not get why anyone would even want to be around Ward. I just can’t stand that guy and his misguided, manipulative ways… It’s also beyond me why they kill off interesting characters and keep the awful ones… He is just such a shallow and boring character… [Edit: Forgot to add, that I already discussed this character in length over at Pop goes the Culture and I just don’t feel like adding more to it right now…]
And why does everybody have an agenda? This is just getting ridiculous…
Well, I guess we’ll see how the next Season will turn out, as it just has been renewed. (Like Agent Carter, YAY! :D)

Daredevil – Season One (Watch Date: 25./26.04.)

So, apparently I couldn’t help myself but to sign in on Netflix and watch the entire Season in two days…
I never really cared about Daredevil as a character, I’ve seen some stuff, watched that movie back in the day, but barely knew anything about him and I probably confused him with other heroes more than once. But with all the good Marvel did in their movies and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Agent Carter and all the stuff I’ve seen over at tumblr I got more and more curious.

And I wasn’t disappointed.
It’s a really great and interesting show and very different from all that Marvel has offered us so far. Where usually there is black and white the characters here are ambiguous to say the least, everyone could be seen as hero or villain, depending on the point of view. They have interesting characters on either side. Fisk and his right hand man were just as interesting as Matt and Foggy. Though I was surprised at how likeable the supposed bad guy was, how utterly annoying a wannabe journalist (Karen) and how fascinating a mere nurse (Claire) can be.

Most incredible is, however, the acting. It’s always hard for an actor to get into a role of a disabled person, but pretending to be a blind character that can see through his other senses, but pretends to see nothing, sounds like a pretty difficult job to me. And it was well done by Charlie Cox, whom I only knew through his role in Stardust.
The only thing I found strange was his American-English accent, it sounded so weird and when I re-watched Stardust – for the first time in English – the difference to his more British-English accent was clearly, well, visible would be a very bad pun, but I can’t think of any better word.
Though pretty much everyone did a great job.
I’m really looking forward to seeing more of this show, though I’m also curious what they will deal with story-wise as they already killed off one major character and interesting side characters and put the main villain in jail – though Marvel villains rarely stay in prison for long…
(P.S. In my first part of the post I accidentally wrote Datedevil, which sounds like a weird comedy show about dating…)

Undateable – Season Two, Episode 04-06 (Watch Date: End of April)

Speaking of really weird dating show: Some time during my break I discovered this show.
It’s weird, not always funny, weird and has a bunch of ridiculous characters and did I say weird?
They play a lot with stereotypes and prejudices, but there are also moments of utter ridiculousness. It’s fun to watch and you don’t really have to think much while doing so.
It’s a nice alternative to the other shows.

Elementary – Season Three, Episode 18-23 (Watch Date 04.05./11.05.)

Two shows about Sherlock Holmes pop up close to each other: One keeps close to the books, the other only takes the names and some basics. Well, and one has way more episodes than the other. But I won’t go into more detail as I want to make a comparison post between the two series one day.
Anyway, Elementary is an interesting crime show, with eccentric characters and weird puzzles. But this show falls in the footsteps of many other crime shows and repeats the same pattern over and over again. There is little development in the overall storyline and character development, there is just the crime solving. The only things that happened were the change in relationship between Holmes and his sober companion and the possible promotion for the police captain.
It’s just getting a tad bit boring.

Escape Artist- Season One, Episode 1 (Watch Date 30.04.)

In a recent rush of buying some DVDs I got my hands on this one. Unmei and I watched the first episode in German, but we didn’t get around to continue. British crime shows are very different to what we are used to here in Germany, but it is always interesting to watch.
The bad guy in this one seems utterly creepy and there was again a mother who didn’t make it to the end of the episode. The story deals with some quite interesting aspects of the works in court, so I’m curious how this will turn out.

The Pretender – Season One, Episode 13/14: Bazooka Jarod/Ranger Jarod (Watch Date: 23./27. 04.)

We also didn’t manage to continue with (re-)watching this one in German.
But we discussed that it would be highly unlikely that what Jarod does in the series in general wouldn’t be possible in a current day setting and it would also be quite hard to replace the actor. Michael T. Weiss just does a really great job at portraying the childish genius of this character.

Doctor Who – Season Three, Episode 11: Utopia (Watch Date 03.05.)

As I already got the Netflix account for Daredevil I used the chance to find out how they translated the phrase uttered by The Face of Boe to The Doctor that played a role again in this episode:

„You Are Not Alone“

Turns out they didn’t, at least not completely. They used the English phrase and gave the translation afterwards, but you still could make the connection to Professor Yana (aka The Master). I think this is a good choice as renaming the character would have been silly…
Translated the phrase reads: Du bist nicht allein, Therefore the name would be: DBNA and I doubt anyone would go by such a name… (The formal version Sie sind nicht allein would make even less sense: SSNA).
Anyway, please don’t ask me, why I started thinking about this, things like that just happen.

What were you watching?

What episodes (or movies) did you enjoy/dislike throughout the week?
Anything you’d recommend checking out?
Let me know in the comments below!

Final Words

As you can see did I catch up with with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, as I went to see Avengers: Age of Ultron on the 26th of April. The cinema here actually played the original version once, beside the German dub. Thanks to them sending me into the wrong room when I wanted to watch Guardians of the Galaxy in English I now got to see AoU for free. 🙂
PoiSonPaiNter

Lost in Translation

For a couple of years now I watch series primarily in English. At first it was Anime with English subtitles, later there were many different shows that I wanted to check out.
Though I do believe I decided that I should watch more in English because I utterly failed at understanding Sherlock in A Study in Pink. He just talked way too fast for me.
Now several series later, I can understand him quite well and my next goal is Vicky Pollard from Little Britain. >_<
Anyway, what I discovered is that some shows like to include German elements into their plots – be it names, characters or other things – and as a German native that really likes the German language I consider these moments to be quite interesting.
Though in most cases they are also quite frustrating.

Let’s add some German things!

We Germans are fully aware of our past and as I mentioned in the post linked above, is it often still shoved into our faces, even though we are three or four generations after those who fought in the war. So it is not surprising that the most characters with German backgrounds that are included in shows and movies are Nazis or somehow involved with them.
Personally I think this is really annoying and whenever a show had this plot point I considered turning it off and lost a little respect for the show. I mean in shows that cover historic elements it is good – and necessary – that they also deal with that part of the worlds history as it should not be forgotten, but in shows that focus more on entertainment than on, well, teaching, it just subtracts from its credibility if they have to use Nazis to fill episodes.
If that wasn’t enough are the actors portraying the supposed German people rarely even natives.
Whenever I notice that the language spoken isn’t English and sounds remotely like German, I listen again to understand it better. On the one hand is it difficult to switch between the languages, on the other hand is the pronunciation often really weird and hard to understand. Especially if they simply choose English native actors, give them some German words to learn and let them play a German character.
So far – if I remember correctly – I only came across three (!) German natives that portrayed characters with German background (all Nazis, but, well, I can’t be that picky…): Thomas Kretschmann  in Dracula (the series) and Avengers: Age of Ultron and Ludger Pistor and Wilfried Hochholdinger in X-Men: First Class. With Daniel Brühl there will be a forth when Captain America: Civil War airs (Basically: Marvel does a good job at casting the right people).
Still, not all English natives are bad at portraying a German accent.
Reed Diamond’s German accent as Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s Daniel Whitehall, for example, was so well done that I had to look him up, to check if he was German and I’m still highly impressed by it – and I don’t give this complement often.
But even if they do it well, what is said does not always need to be correct…

They don’t talk like we do?

Apparently beside not wanting to cast actual German natives are those responsible for the dialogues fans of literal translations and don’t really care about using actual German grammar for the things the characters have to say.
Though you don’t really hear complains about this from the actors or people involved.
But after having to order someone to

Schieß dem Fenster! (grammatically totally wrong: Shoot the window)

in Die Hard and being informed about its wrongness afterwards, Alan Rickman, for example, decided to never again take up a role of someone speaking German.
It is way easier to translate things word by word and not use the actual meaning of it – and we German’s aren’t spared from that as most people’s English is not the yellow from the egg – but I believe that in a show/movie viewed by thousands of people there would be time and effort put into properly translating phrases in a different language.
Besides German; Spanish and Russian – just as Japanese and Chinese – are used as foreign languages, but my Russian has become too bad for me to notice mistakes and my Japanese was never that good to begin with and I never learned the other two, so I can not say how well/bad they are doing with those languages.
(If anyone is interested: Mr. Rickman should have ordered the other guy to „Schieß auf’s Fenster“ to make it understandable)
It is also interesting how English natives seem to think German’s talk. I for one can’t watch a certain scene in Sherlock’s The Blind Banker without getting utterly annoyed and being really disappointed in the show…
Still, this gives me stuff to rant about.

Lost in Translation

For a long time I have contemplated how and if I should do this, but I have decided that I just want to get this out of my mind. I really like the German language, so it pains me if it is used poorly.
Starting with this one I will publish posts about the portrayal of the German language or culture in series and movies. I’m not sure how entertaining this will be for English natives, but I do believe those of you that want to learn a bit German (culture) might find this an interesting view on what writers actually throw at their audiences.
Definitely covered in this post-series will be:

  • The Wesen of Grimm and other words that are barely German
  • The infuriating tourist from The Blind Banker
  • The court scene from Sherlock’s Many Happy Returns
  • The repeated appearance of a certain historic figure (e.g. Doctor Who – Let’s kill Hitler; Grimm – The Three Coins)
  • The polite Daleks in Doctor Who’s Stolen Earth (thanks to hexenadia for reminding me of this one!)

If you watch/ed a series or movie where German was/is involved, let me know and I will check out if they have done it justice.
PoiSonPaiNter