One of the best things about having an iPad is that it helps to mitigate the latent shame a grown-ass man feels when he purchases and reads a comic book. For instance, one can buy Hawkeye #1, the awesome Marvel relaunch featuring the world’s greatest marksman Clint Barton doing what he does when he’s not Avengering, told in a style reminiscent of a 70s cop film and drawn like an old-school comic from the 30s, and read it discretely, away from the judgmental eyes of friends and spouses. So I’m told. Hawkeye was one of my favorite characters in the film version of The Avengers, given a fairly unexpected story arc and moments of pure badassery by writer-director Joss Whedon. The Avengers was, of course, terrific, and everyone can now relax and breathe a sigh of relief as the folks at Marvel Studios announced that Whedon will be returning to direct the sequel.
And speaking of wanking, fan wankery will no doubt begin in earnest once we learn a little more about the Marvel TV series that Whedon will also be helping to develop. The only thing we know about this is that it’s set in “the Avengers universe”, and may or may not feature actual superheroes. (My money says it’s a show about SHIELD, which I would totally watch. Hell, I’d watch a show about New York City sanitation workers if it was run by Whedon and set in the Marvel Universe.)
Not to be outdone, Warner Bros recently announced that there will be a Justice League movie. Historians will note that years ago, George Miller (director of the Mad Max movies) was attached to do a Justice League film, and production had actually started before Warner Bros. pulled the plug. Now that The Avengers has made a gazillion dollars, Warner decided that hmm, maybe there IS an audience of these sorts of movies. And so they’ve asked Ben Affleck if he’d like to have a go at directing it.
Affleck’s skills as a director surprised a whole lot of folks: Gone Baby Gone and The Town were both really, really good movies and his forthcoming Argo (about a CIA mission to rescue a group of Americans caught up in the Iranian Hostage Crisis) looks like it will good. But this seems like an odd choice, even though Ben has done two stints in a superhero costume. Most people remember that he was Daredevil in the terrible movie of the same name; a few diehard Affleckians will recall that he played the guy who played the original TV Superman, George Reeves, in Hollywoodland. As a director, Affleck goes for gritty realism, which makes one wonder if Warner wants to bring a Nolanesque quality to their Justice League flick. Which makes one wonder: if this does happen, who would play Somber Aquaman? Let the Ryan Gosling Talks To Fishes Memes begin.