Vaughan & Chiang's "Paper Girls" Builds a Familiar Yet Disconcerting World
If Captain America: The Winter Soldier taught us one thing, it’s that stars Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson and Anthony Mackie are terrific together on screen. If it taught us a second, it’s that nothing — not a decades-old global conspiracy, not would-be assassins, not even Robert Redford — can keep Nick Fury down.
Hot Toys is celebrating the S.H.I.E.L.D. director with a 1/6th-scale collectible figure, based on the likeness of Samuel L. Jackson from the Marvel Studios film. Standing nearly 12 inches tall, the figure boasts more than 30 points of articulation, six interchangeable hands, a removable eye patch, a removable arm sling, a pistol, a mobile phone, a data-storage device and a display stand.
As fun as it is to watch 8-Bit Cinema’s reimagining of Captain America: The Winter Soldier as a classic side-scrolling action game, it’s probably for the best that it’s not really. Because, seriously, if there were an actual old-school adventure-spy game like this, in which you could play as Captain America, Black Widow, Nick Fury or the Falcon, we’d never get anything else done.
Hydra knows I fed enough quarters into Elevator Action when I was a kid …
In between uncovering Hydra plots and facing homicidal robots, Captain America took time to surprise a 9-year-old fan who’s embroiled in a battle of his own.
Kenny Botting, who underwent surgery in September for a brain tumor, has spent the past three weeks at Christopher’s Haven in Boston, which provides a home away from home for young cancer patients and their families while they undergo treatment at nearby hospitals (Massachusetts General Hospital is just next door).
Anyone who’s seen Captain America: The Winter Soldier or Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. knows that in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Hydra has secretly operated within the espionage and law-enforcement agency for decades, plotting global conquest. Now it’s time for the organization to come out of the shadows … with shirts that give new meaning to the term “sleeper agent.”
Think Geek reveals true allegiances with this glow-in-the-dark T-shirt and tank top that boast the S.H.I.E.L.D. logo when the lights are on, and the Hydra emblem when they go off. I imagine The Winter Soldier would’ve gone differently had these been standard issue at the Triskelion,
Considering the influence 1970s conspiracy thrillers had on Captain America: The Winter Soldier, it’s not too much of a stretch for someone to reimagine the Marvel sequel as an ’80s action movie. However, Frank Ireland goes a step or two further, recutting the film as a grainy trailer for the home-video release of a B-movie from Cannon, known for such gems as Invasion U.S.A., Missing in Action and Cyborg.
The folks at How It Should Have Ended produce a lot of videos suggesting “fixes” for blockbusters ranging from Iron Man 3 to Frozen to Captain America: The Winter Soldier. But all of the scenes don’t necessarily make it into the final product, which brings us to this newly released “Bonus Bundle.”
“Often we write too many sketches when creating a HISHE and some scenes get left out,” they explain. “Sometimes they are cut because it didn’t fit the flow of the main video. Sometimes they are cut because they aren’t finished in time. Well rather than let them collect dust we bundled them all together in one collection so you can see those extra scenes that might have been.”
This fall has been particularly exceptional television adaptations: The Walking Dead season premiere pulled in more than 17 million viewers, while more than 8 million watched the first episode Gotham, making it Fox’s best fall drama debut in 14 years. More than 6 million raced to see The Flash pilot, giving The CW its highest ratings ever. About 5 million are regularly tuning in for Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., and nearly 3 million for the third season of Arrow.
It’s not limited to live-action series, either: 2 million people watch Teen Titans Go!, and more than 1 million tune in to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles on Nickelodeon.
On the big screen, all four feature films starring Marvel characters — X-Men: Days of Future Past, Guardians of the Galaxy, Captain America: The Winter Soldier and The Amazing Spider-Man 2 — each grossed more than $700 million each worldwide. So far, comic book movies have generated more than $3.8 billion dollars this year. While it’s unknown how many of those dollars are from repeat viewings, that’s still a lot of people.
The folks at How It Should Have Ended have turned their attention to Marvel’s Captain America: The Winter Soldier, pointing out a couple of plot holes — or at least plot oversights — while delivering its good-natured tweaks. Y’know, their usual shtick. So if you haven’t seen the film, you may want to avoid the video.
Shirow Miwa, the artist best known for his action manga Dogs, recently tweeted a series of sketches inspired by Captain America: The Winter Soldier that could spur an editor to lobby for another take on Marvel Mangaverse. Seldom has Steve Rogers or Bucky Barnes looked so pouty …
Sophie Caldecott is a hero and what she accomplished this past week is more inspiring than saving the world or defeating Ultron. I love a feel good story as much as the next person, and this one is a doozy.
In October 2011, her father Stratford Caldecott was diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer. He and his family have persevered through every treatment and now, three years later, the cancer has advanced to the final stages of the disease. Her father is a huge comic fan and often joked that he’d hang on just to see the next Marvel movie release; sadly, he wasn’t well enough to make it to the theaters to catch Captain America: The Winter Soldier. So starting last Monday, Sophie launched a simple campaign to get a copy of the movie to her father in his convalescence at home and to bring him some cheer in a difficult time.
Much like Hydra, the subversive organization set on world domination, Stephen Colbert is a master deception, and of the long game.
For the past eight and a half years, we’ve been fooled by the talk-show host, who’s so adept at the art of subterfuge that, in the wake of Steve Rogers’ “death” in 2007, he was bequeathed Captain America’s shield, which to this day is displayed — like a trophy! — on the set of The Colbert Report. Heck, he was so bold, so self-assured, that he even made a run for the White House in the Marvel Universe (a bid that was unsuccessful, thankfully).
“When I first got this role I just cried like a baby because I was like, ‘Wow, next Halloween, I’m gonna open the door and there’s gonna be a little kid dressed as the Falcon.’ That’s the thing that always gets me. I feel like everybody deserves that. I feel like there should be a Latino superhero. Scarlett does great representation for all the other girls, but there should be a Wonder Woman movie. I don’t care if they make 20 bucks, if there’s a movie you’re gonna lose money on, make it Wonder Woman. You know what I mean, ’cause little girls deserve that. There’s so many of these little people out here doing awful things for money in the world of being famous. And little girls see that. They should have the opposite spectrum of that to look up to.”
– Captain America: The Winter Soldier star Anthony Mackie, discussing playing the Falcon, and the need for more representation of women and minorities in superhero movies
What did you do last weekend? Nothing much, probably; no real reason to get excited. After all, it was just another awesome Marvel movie opening. Granted, “awesome” isn’t an objective description, and surely some people had a pretty miserable time. But judging from reviews, user ratings and my own anecdotal observations, odds are a significant majority of the approximately 11 million people who watched Captain America: The Winter Soldier enjoyed it.
The film has been thoroughly reviewed — you can read CBR’s take here — so I won’t get into a big assessment. (Suffice it to say, I liked it.) Instead ,what I want to talk about is the larger Marvel Cinematic Universe, and how it hasn’t just successfully adapted stories and characters, but the very experience of the Marvel Comics Universe.
It is now well-documented that Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige is a big comics fan. The difference, however, is that he didn’t grow up with them, but schooled himself on Marvel’s stories while working under producer Lauren Shuler Donner on the first X-Men movie. That distinction might have given him the ability to view the characters and concepts without being hindered by nostalgia, and helped him to dissect how Marvel’s framework could be used for future movies. Hollywood is an even more collaborative business than comics, so it’s unlikely that credit rests solely with Feige. But he certainly was an advocate for leaning more faithfully into the source material.
Let’s get this out of the way first: so many spoilers ahead, you guys. So very many spoilers.
I saw Captain America: The Winter Soldier last night, and I haven’t stopped thinking about it since. So please bear with the incredible amount of spoilers ahead in this week’s Fifth Color, not to mention the rampant speculation about what’s ahead of us yet. This one is big, perhaps the biggest Marvel movie since the first Iron Man.
The short and spoiler-free version is this: Go see the movie. It’s brilliant, very well thought out, and if you’re a fan of the Ed Brubaker years on Captain America, you’ll not only enjoy the tone of the film, but you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the twists they throw in. #itsallconnected is the simplest way to put it.
This isn’t traditional cinema any more, not with Marvel Studios. Each of its films have been both sequential and separate, with a slowly rising degree of success. By all rights, you should be able to watch The Avengers without watching all of the solo movies that came before it, but you get a grander enjoyment if you’ve seen more. Iron Man was a fun movie, but now it’s even more fun in the context of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Trilogies come close to this kind of storytelling, but even then there’s a commitment to seeing at least the first one to get the idea of what’s ahead. With Marvel, audiences already knows the theory behind superheroes to enable them to jump in when one catches their eye. The Marvel Cinematic Universe, at its best, should be able to be viewed as separate movies and as parts of a whole. However, after Captain America: The Winter Solider, there’s not much of that whole left.
WARNING: Not joking on the spoiler thing. If you are spoiler-fearless, already saw Captain America: The Winter Soldier or just want to jump into the speculation pit with me and float around in a very well constructed cinematic universe, read on!
Captain America: The Winter Soldier stars Chris Evans and Sebastian Stan appeared this morning at the New York Stock Exchange, where they joined Marvel Entertainment executives to ring the opening bell, and to promote the Friday premiere of their film.
The actors also posed for photos with a costumed Sentinel of Liberty whom we can only presume is that Captain America from the 1950s — or else a trader who lost a bet.