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The Female Perspective: In Defense of “Superman v. Batman”

Welcome! This is a weekly blog* by Author J.L. Metcalf where I discuss anything and everything that strikes my fancy. If you have ideas on what you think I should write about, please send me an email via my website!

For now, sit back, relax and enjoy the blog!

*All views expressed in “The Female Perspective” are those of J.L. Metcalf, not Great Stories, Inc.


I’m not going to pull any punches here, I really, really enjoyed Superman v. Batman: Dawn of Justice and I am going to tell you why. If you haven’t seen the movie yet and want no spoilers I’d say stop reading, I’ll try to keep the important stuff out of here, but if you’re like me and want to know NOTHING about a movie before watching it, then stop reading. You’ve been warned!

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I, like so many people, have been looking forward to Superman v. Batman for awhile. I am a big fan of Man of Steel as well so yeah, there’s that. I will also say that when I heard that Ben Affleck was going to play Batman, I was a bit … disappointed.

I’m over that now.

Here’s what I think is good about Superman v. Batman: Dawn of Justice and why the haters really do need to shut up.

The Casting 

Yep, Affleck at the older, more world-weary Batman is perfect (and huge). As much as I loved Christian Bale’s portrayal, Affleck does the Caped Crusader justice. Having read The Dark Knight and other comics that feature this older, grumpier Batman, I feel like Affleck really managed to capture that essence. This is a man who has been through a lot of crap, has watched a lot of people he love die and who isn’t about to let some dude in a cape take over the world. Affleck is at times so earnest in his hatred toward Superman that you feel uncomfortable, not because the acting is bad but because the acting is so good. You want to shake him and make him see reason, Superman is not going to turn on the humans, he wants to help for goodness sake, just like you do Bats. Just like you do.

I find Henry Cavill as Superman a continued great choice. He’s got the gravitas, the looks and the persona to pull off the titular character. He was great in Man of Steel and I look forward to seeing more of him in the future permutations of Superman. In this film he did not disappoint, this was a different Superman than in Man of Steel, he’s conflicted. He wants to do the right thing but the more he tries, the more crap he seems to get. He also seems to revel in the love and adoration of the people he saves, a dangerous combination for a mortal, but as an alien, is Superman immune to an inflated ego? Only time will tell.

"Don't worry fellas, I'll protect you." - Wonder Woman

Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman … Oh man did she rock this big time. Not only is she beautiful, but she is also tough as all get out. She’s as tall as the fellas and very easily stands with them in the final battle. When verbally sparring with Bruce Wayne, Diana Prince doesn’t flinch from his steely gaze, nor does she cow-tow in anyway. She stands tall and walks off without a care in the world. Unimpressed by the billionaire. When she finally shows up in her full costume, it’s wonderful because she saves Batman. SHE SAVES BATMAN! I love it. It made me VERY excited about her upcoming feature film, I have ZERO doubts that Gadot can pull it off. She’s going to be amazing.

Can you see it? The madness underneath?
Can you see it? The madness underneath?

Jessie Eisenberg as Lex Luthor. Oh man, this kid. This kid rocked Luthor. The overall tone of the movie is much darker than a lot of  the other comic book films and Luthor is the ultimate epitome of that. He is nuts. Totally batsh*t crazy nuts. Eisenberg plays it perfectly. At times being an adorable jokester before finally revealing the massive smarts and diabolical brain behind that boyish exterior (when he feeds another man a Jolly Rancher, I laughed out loud. It was amazing). I cannot wait to see what else he does as Luthor.

The Story Is Dark and Wonderful

What I loved most about Superman v. Batman is the fact that they don’t shy away form what happened in Man of Steel, instead it’s the focus for everything happens in SvB. We are pushed 18 months after Superman battles General Zod and we see how Bruce Wayne was  part of the action, watching one of his buildings crumble to the ground with people in it that he cared about still inside. We see the anger, the fury building in Wayne’s eyes and we know, oh yes, we KNOW that he is not going to let Superman pass by unscathed after the massive destruction.

Superman himself is being both lauded and lambasted by the government and the people. They see him as a God, and that fills people with both joy and terrible fear. What if he decides to kill everyone? Could he destroy the world? Should someone have that kind of power and be allowed to run loose around the world? When Superman finally shows up at the capitol to answer for his “crimes”, all Hell breaks loose and the anguish on his face, when he is witness to death on a massive scale, is clear. He doesn’t know who he is, he doesn’t know what he’s doing … Superman is having an existential crises on the Superhero level.

It’s a dark movie. It’s not for kids and it’s not a Marvel movie. This doesn’t make it bad, in fact, I loved that it was “real world” (and I know people hate that term) because you know what? If Superman showed up one day, this is what would happen to the world. We would be split in half, those who see Superman as a God-like figure here to save humanity and there would be those who see him as the Devil, here to destroy humanity. It’s good and smart film making and writing.

Batman-v-Superman-Poster

The Battles!

The battles are awesome. That’s all I can really say about that. Not too much CGI to make it annoying and enough chaos and excitement to make you hover on the edge of your seat, not sure what’s going to happen. Though Lois Lane needs to get a brain in her head! Her throwing away Batman’s spear made me nuts! I know it had a plot reason behind it but for pete’s sake woman, hold on to that! You KNOW they’re going to need it later.

Besides that, watching costumed superhero’s duke it out always fills me with geek-ish glee. I LOVE IT. Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman, together at last.

The Haters

There have been a lot of bad reviews of Superman v. Batman and I get it, some people are just Hell-bent on hating on the movie, just like they did with Man of Steel and that is totally their prerogative. In my (humble) opinion, they’re wrong. This is a good movie. It’s a lot of fun in it’s own dark way, but it’s a great addition to the superhero genre of films. Is it for everybody? No. Some people are going to really hate it (as we’ve seen) and some people are going to really love it. It’s that kind of movie I think, you either really love it or you really hate it. But don’t let the critics make that decision for you, go, see for yourself if you’re so inclined and decide for yourself.

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Did you see Superman v. Batman: Dawn of Justice? What did you think??? 

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The Crank File: What I’m Reading This Week 3/30/2016

Hey there comic fans and welcome to another episode of the Crank File, where we crank so hard it oughta be a crime. It was a crazy busy weekend and I have not seen Batman vs Superman yet. While there are a ton of negative reviews floating around the internet thrashing the movie, my friends who saw it, and whose opinion I actually respect, pretty much unanimously said that it kicked ass. That’s good enough for me, so hopefully this weekend.

 

Here’s what I’m reading this week.

The Top of the Pile: Saga #35

 

S35

Words: Brian K. Vaughan

Art: Fiona Staples

What it is: Hard time.

Why we love it: My favorite line from issue #34, “anyone who thinks that one book has all the answers hasn’t read enough books”. If you aren’t reading Saga yet, you have no idea what you are missing. Hands down the best book out right now.

 

The Mainstream One: Aquaman #50

 

AM50

Words: Dan Abnett

Art: Brett Booth

What it is: Dead Water is a killer and a monster. No matter where you go, he can reach you if there’s even one drop of water present. Pray that Aquaman finds you first! And the most famous oceanic hero on Earth is Aquaman, right? In our gala 50th issue, make way for Aquawoman!

Why we like it: Not counting a couple of multiverse appearances, this will be the first appearance of Aquawoman in DCU continuity. Could be an important first appearance, but then again the phrase “DCU continuity” sounds like an oxymoron these days.

 

The Indie One: Black Science #21

 

BS21

Words: Rick Remender

Art: Matteo Scalera

What it is: Conclusion Grant comes to rescue his daughter but she’s not daddy’s little girl anymore. All hail the Godqueen!

Why we like it: This will probably the last single issue of Black Science that I will buy before dropping it from my pull list and trade waiting. Not for lack of quality though. Black Science has been an awesome read and ranks among my favorites of Remender’s creator owned series, but each arc is so densely packed with call-backs and symbolism that I think the story will read better as complete volumes.

The #1 One: X-Men ’92 #1

 

XM1

Words: Chris Sims

Art: Alti Firmansyah

What it is: The X-Men of the 90s are back! Continuing from the hit Secret Wars series starring the X-Men of a more EXTREME decade. With Cassandra Nova defeated, the X-Men have taken in all the young mutants she had rounded up and are officially reopening the Xavier School for Gifted Children…but being responsible won’t stop them from having crazy adventures! Especially when Omega Red shows up with the (Formerly) Soviet Super Soldiers!

Why we like it: Jim Lee’s run on X-Men and the Fox animated cartoon series were huge influences in my young life, and both directly responsible for my current love/borderline obsession with comics. I learned how to draw in grade school by sketching epic fights between Gambit and Wolverine on my vocab homework. To me, this represents the X-Men in their prime and some of my fondest childhood memories.

 

The One I’m Buying for the Cover: Captain America Sam Wilson #7 (Ross variant)

 

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Words: Nick Spencer

Art: Daniel Acuna

What it is: ENORMOUS 75th ANNIVERSARY ISSUE! AN AVENGERS STANDOFF tie-in! Since World War II, Steve Rogers has wielded his red, white and blue shield against unspeakable odds. When he fell, his brother in arms, Bucky Barnes, picked it up. When it was time to rest, he handed it to his good friend, Sam Wilson. But now Steve will be asked to wield it one last time, against a foe so deadly he knows it could very well be his final stand. Commemorating the 75th Anniversary of Marvel’s Sentinel of Liberty with a story of Captain Americas present and former — with this explosive, world-changing chapter in the blockbuster spring Avengers event, STANDOFF. Plus, stories celebrating the legacy and legend of Captain America throughout history, by Greg Rucka & Mike Perkins; Tim Sale; & John Cassaday

Why we like it: Although I’ve been enjoying the heck out of Sam Wilson’s Captain America, we all knew that Steve Rogers would eventually return to the role. Well that time has come because this Wednesday, O.G. Cap is back! Alex Ross does an incredible swipe of the cover to 1941’s Captain America #1 by comic legends Joe Simon and Jack Kirby. It’s Cap punching out Hitler, ’nuff said.

 

That’s all I got this week. Until next time, carpe comics!

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Trailer Snark (March 25th, 2016 Theatrical Trailers)

Welcome to Trailer Snark, a weekly column covering trailers for movies that will be released this week with thoughts from our roster of bloggers (Jessica from The Female Perspective, Ken from The Crank File, Jim from The Front Row View, Rob from Spector for Hire, and Great Stories founder Chris).  Thanks for reading, and enjoy the previews!

Last Week: Zootopia topped the box office for the third straight week with $38M and putting its overall domestic haul to over $200M.  The latest Divergent series entry, Allegiant, came in second place with a $29M opening.  Miracles from Heaven debuted at number three with $18.5M.  10 Cloverfield Lane was in fourth ($12.5M/$45.1M).  In fifth was Deadpool still doing good biz ($8M/$340.9M).  The rest of the top ten was as follows:  London Has Fallen ($6.8M/$50M), Whiskey Tango Foxtrot ($2.8M/$19.2M), The Perfect Match ($1.9M/$7.3M), The Brothers Grimsby ($1.4M/$5.9M), and The Revanant ($1.2M/$181.1M).  It’s a short list of new releases this week as most studios made way for a certain superhero battle royal movie.  Let’s see what is on tap!

Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice (Warner Bros) – Action/Adventure
Rated PG – 13 for intense sequences of violence and action throughout, and some sensuality
Tag Line: None
Starring:  Ben Affleck, Henry Cavill, Gal Gadot, Amy Adams, Jesse Eisenberg
Plot: Fearing the actions of Superman are left unchecked, Batman takes on the man of steel, while the world wrestles with what kind of a hero it really needs. With Batman and Superman fighting each other, a new threat, Doomsday, is created by Lex Luthor. It’s up to Superman and Batman to set aside their differences along with Wonder Woman to stop Lex Luthor and Doomsday from destroying Metropolis.
Running Time: 151 minutes

Ken: I don’t care how bad the latest slew of reviews have been, I’m still pretty excited to see Dawn of Justice this weekend. Please be good…
Jessica: I remember a time were advance info and reviews weren’t as easily available and I miss those days. I don’t care what anyone else says, i want to see this bad boy and I have high hopes for it.
Jim: I’m reaching my saturation point with superhero movies, but have to admit this looks like a good one. Hopefully, it’s not just the trailer that’s good. Jesse Eisenberg as Luthor has me hopeful…but then again, so did Kevin Spacey. Ugh.
Chris: I have scoffed at the premise of any scenario where Batman could take on Superman, but comic movies are all about suspending reality anyway, so what the heck.  I am in.
Rob:  Make mine Marvel!

My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 (Universal) – Comedy/Romance
Rated PG-13 for some suggestive material
Tag Line:  Every day of my life is Greek Club.
Starring: Nia Vardalos, John Corbett
Plot: A Portokalos family secret brings the beloved characters back together for an even bigger and Greeker wedding.
Running Time: 94 minutes

Rob:  I will probably be forced to watch this with my wife at some point, but will try to resist.
Chris:  I formally renew my vow to not see this film.
Ken: Didn’t see the first, no interest in the sequel.
Jessica: Where’s the caped crusader? The man of steel? Wonder Woman? No superhero’s means I don’t care.
Jim: Jaded Moviegoer is showing up a lot this week—I’ve had it with ethnic family comedies as well—they peaked with Moonstruck.

I Saw the Light (Sony Picture Classics) – Biography/Drama/Music
Rated R for some language and brief sexuality/nudity
Tag Line: None
Starring: Tom Hiddleston, Elizabeth Olsen
Plot: The story of the country-western singer Hank Williams, who in his brief life created one of the greatest bodies of work in American music. The film chronicles his rise to fame and its tragic effect on his health and personal life.
Running Time: 123 minutes

Jim: Might as well just rent Walk the Line.
Rob:  No interest.  But Hiddleston may be the next Bond, so it may be good to see what he can do.
Chris: Tom Hiddleston seems to take to this role of country legend well.  Color me intrigued.
Ken: Reminds me of Walk the Line, the Johnny Cash movie, but with a much grimmer ending.
Jessica: Nope, nope, nope…No Lex Luthor? All set.

Born to Be Blue (IFC Films) – Biography/Drama/Music
Rated R for drug use, language, some sexuality and brief violence
Tag Line: None
Starring:  Ethan Hawke, Carmen Ejogo
Plot: A re-imagining of jazz legend Chet Baker’s musical comeback in the late ’60s.

Jessica: Music is nice, I bet Batman likes music, moody sad music, oh so jazz is perfect for him!
Jim: I love jazz and Ethan Hawke always surprises me—rental, at the least.
Rob: Looks really good, but rental material.

Chris: Two musical bio-pics in one week.  Country Vs Jazz….FIGHT!
Ken: Another dark, musical biopic. Not familiar with Chet Baker so not very jazzed about this movie.

They’re Watching (Amplify) – Comedy/Horror
Not Rated
Tag Line: None
Starring: Mia Faith, Kris Lemche
Plot: When an American home improvement TV show visits a remote Eastern European village, the young crew thinks the lack of mocha lattés and free wifi will be the worst of their problems. But after their filming interrupts the superstitious villagers’ private religious ritual, the situation takes a turn for the homicidal… and when the blood starts flowing, that’s when things get really weird. With THEY’RE WATCHING, noted graphic novelists and animators Micah Wright and Jay Lender turn a classic horror premise upside down to create a fresh, funny, eye-popping twist on the genre.
Running Time: 95 minutes

Ken: Literally watched the trailer 3 times, still can’t figure out wtf is going on. Who just yells out “witch” at a strange bar?
Jessica: Um what? Superman would blow this film up with his heat vision.
Jim: WHAT are we watching? Sorry, the SpongeBob reference threw me.
Rob:  Stupidly amusing, and would rent it.  I also love the SpongeBob reference.

Chris:  They is certainly not me.

Tickets Purchased:  Four tickets for the DC throw-down (Ken, Chris, Jessica, and Jim).  Rob stays home and watches more Daredevil.

Whose Side Are You On?
Whose Side Are You On?
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The Female Perspective: Ladies Are Taking Care of Business…

Welcome! This is a weekly blog* by Author J.L. Metcalf where I discuss anything and everything that strikes my fancy. If you have ideas on what you think I should write about, please send me an email via my website!

For now, sit back, relax and enjoy the blog!

*All views expressed in “The Female Perspective” are those of J.L. Metcalf, not Great Stories, Inc.


I thought about writing about Daredevil season 2 and how amazing the women are in that show but then I started thinking in a slightly broader sense. As I was binge watching season 2 with my man I realized that in the Marvel film and TV universe, they are writing exceptional women. Women who fight, who love and who do not apologize for being tough and brave, but who are also feminine and have their weak moments as well.

It’s bloody brilliant.

Elektra stands on her own (and apart) from her male counterparts in "Daredevil" season 2.
Elektra stands on her own (and apart) from her male counterparts in “Daredevil” season 2.

I am obviously a huge fan of the Marvel Universe that’s being created but I didn’t stop to really think of why, beyond the flash and fun of course, and now I realize it’s because in pretty much ever movie or TV show I’ve watched the women are bad ass, in the most wonderful way. This is feminism at work, this is equality at work and it’s wonderful to see. Today young girls have the option of so many female role models from Black Widow to Supergirl to Agent May on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D and so many more that’s actually quite staggering. Even on a show like Daredevil the character of Elektra had the potential to be overshadowed by the “big boys” like Punisher and Daredevil himself, but she didn’t, she had her own storyline, her own struggles, her own power. Karen Page, a normal human by all accounts, finds her way in the world, finds her purpose and doesn’t ever become meek or fragile, even when kidnapped and fearful of her life, she manages to use her head and even though she doesn’t technically save the day, she manages to keep herself alive and guess what? She doesn’t fall apart in a sobbing pile in a man’s arms after. She picks herself up and keeps going. Elektra and Karen were essential to this season of Daredevil and that makes my feminist heart flutter with joy.

To me that’s how women should be written for TV or film. As women who can fight for their life when they need to, who can keep their heads in terrifying situations and who can rebound after those situations and keep going, keep fighting. They don’t run to the nearest man for love and/or sex and/or comforting, they comfort themselves and get going. They take care of business.

Frankly, that’s how the women I know in real life act. Of course, none of them have been kidnapped by madmen (thank God), but we have all had stressful situations in our life. We crumble, we fight, we cry, we get back up. That’s how you do it and it’s about damn time that TV and film catch onto that.

It’s been a gradual shift and Marvel is not the only one doing it by any means. If we look at Rey from Star Wars: The Force Awakens or Katniss from The Hunger Games (not a fave of mine but I know a strong lady when I see one) or one of my favorites, Black Widow from The Avengers and Captain America. What I love about Black Widow is that she is evolving, we first see her in Iron Man 2 and she is a sexy lady who turns out can fight circles around the men. Then we start to see her in other Marvel films and she starts to become a person, not just a fighter and a solider, but a person. In Age of Ultron she speaks about feeling like a monster for what she has done, for what has been done to her and when faced with the choice of fighting or running away with Bruce, she chooses to fight, because that’s what has to be done. She sacrifices her happiness for the greater good and hopefully you all know some women like that in your lives, I know I certainly do.

Black Widow doesn't apologize for who she is, it weighs heavily upon her, but she keeps on going, carrying that load.
Black Widow doesn’t apologize for who she is, it weighs heavily upon her, but she keeps on going, carrying that load.

The fact is, women are smart, sexy, tough and wonderful (as are men), and what makes me truly happy is to see that finally reflected in popular fiction on TV and in movies. I have high hopes for this weekends big release Batman v. Superman, not because of Batman or Superman, but because of Wonder Woman. FINALLY we get to see her in action and I for one, am extremely hopeful that WW takes after all the women before her and comes off as tough but feminine in the best ways possible.

What I am really digging is that while the costumes are tight fitting and all that, they aren’t slutty or offensive, they make sense for the character and (unlike what so often happens in comics) they are both sensible and sexy, a wonderful combination because when we see young girls cosplaying their favorites, we don’t have to sensor it because hey, it’s long pants and sleeves with a high neckline, fabulous! It makes me proud to be able to witness a time when characters like Agent Peggy Carter and Daisy from S.H.I.E.L.D move flawlessly from being powerful and brave, to being confused and/or uncertain and back again. These are flawed women, beautifully flawed women that aren’t taken advantage of. They stand toe-to-toe with the male characters and sometimes, they end up saving them.

"Don't worry fellas, I'll protect you." - Wonder Woman
“Don’t worry fellas, I’ll protect you.” – Wonder Woman

It’s a wonderful thing to witness, and with so much going on today that is stressful, sad or troubling, it’s truly heartening to be able to see women gaining so much ground, even if it is in a fictional sense. Here’s hoping that one day soon, it will start to really, truly happen in the “real” world.

How about YOU? What female character do you love that’s on TV or in film nowadays? Sound off in the comments and tell me why you love her!

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The Crank File: What I’m Reading This Week 3/23/2016

Hey there comic book fans and welcome back for another episode of the Crank File, where we hand crank our files fresh, every morning. It’s looking like a slow Wednesday for books, but all is not lost friends because the Dawn of Justice movie comes out this week. There were some early concerns when the first trailers were released to a deafening shrug, but the advance-screening reviews have been practically gushing. The buzz surrounding Batman v Superman is already reaching critical mass and I cannot wait to see it this weekend (and that’s a spoiler for you Trailer Snarks readers).

Here’s what I’m reading this week:

 

The Top of the Pile: Batman #50

 

BM50

Publisher: DC

Words: Scott Snyder

Art: Greg Capullo

What it is: Batman has returned to Gotham City! In this extra-sized conclusion to Snyder and Capullo’s epic story ‘Superheavy,’ Bruce Wayne returns to the cape and cowl to battle Mr. Bloom alongside Jim Gordon for the fate of the city they both love.

Why we love it: For the past five years Batman has been the cream of the New 52 crop. Later this year the best book from the Big 2 will be getting renumbered as a new creative team takes over as part of DC’s line-wide Reboot, er, I mean Rebirth. Next month Snyder and Capullo tie a bow around their legendary run with a standalone issue #51. This week, it’s war. It’s the final battle, as issue #50 brings Superheavy to an explosive conclusion. It’s Batman and Gordon versus Mr. Bloom, his minion horde and an army of hijacked Batbots. It’s so ridiculous but it’s also so damn good.

 

The Mainstream One: We Are Robins #10

 

WAR10

Publisher: DC

Words: Lee Bermejo

Art: Jorge Corona

What it is: The Jokers have taken over Middleton High! Duke and Riko are trapped inside as average students-can Dax and Izzy get to them in time? And could Dre really have joined the side of the Jokers? In a final showdown between the Robins and the Jokers, Duke and his team will be put to the ultimate test of loyalty.

Why we like it: Rumors are going around that the leader of the rag tag Robins gang is in line for a major promotion this week. Want to learn more about Duke Thompson? His first appearance in Batman #21 and We Are Robins are good places to start.

 

The Indie One: Outcast #17

 

OC17

Publisher: Image

Words: Robert Kirkman

Art: Paul Azaceta

What it is: ‘The Damage Done’ Megan has to come to grips with the horror of what she did while possessed by a demon.

Why we like it: Every few months I’ve felt like Outcast was on the verge of a breakout, only to see the story stall and sink back into a murky tangle of questions. The most recent issues have been delivering thrills and more importantly, answers. Kirkman has always insisted that he was playing the long game with this series and I smell payoff coming.

 

The #1 One:  Circuit Breaker #1

 

CB1

Publisher: Image

Words: Kevin McCarthy

Art: Kyle Baker

What it is: When the heroic robots that saved Japan during World War IV are outlawed, they turn against mankind, waging a campaign of terror across the last city on Earth. Their creator builds one more soldier-disguised as his teenaged granddaughter-and tasks her with dismantling the marauding mechanical militia. But as she begins to question her programming, will she be the last hope for humanity, or the final nail in our coffin?

Why we like it: Sounds like Astro Boy, except you know, a girl. Could be cool, could be a hack job. Either way I’ll at least give it a flip through because I like Japanese robots. But if you’re not into manga then maybe try out Hyperion #1 from Marvel. I hear he uses a tractor trailer like a bat.

 

Last Week’s Leftovers: Secret Wars: Guardians of Knowhere #1 (Rob Guillory variant)

 

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Publisher: Marvel

Words: Brian Michael Bendis

Art: Mike Deodato

What it is: A single moon orbits Battleworld. But no, that’s no moon. It’s a space station. It’s Knowhere. The head of a dead Celestial, somehow saved in the universal collapse, a colony brimming with convicts and criminals. The Galaxy may be gone, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t places that still need heroes. Places that need champions. That need GUARDIANS.

Why we like it: The unexpected and immediate popularity of Spider-Gwen led to her own solo series. Set in an alternate universe, Spider-Gwen’s story is a warped reflection of 616 Peter Parker’s so it seemed inevitable that Gwenom would eventually happen and now it has been confirmed. Spider-Gwen writer and co-creator Robbie Rodriquez announced that before retiring from Marvel next year, he plans to bring the iconic black alien symbiote costume into Spider-Gwen’s world. Gwenom only appears on the variant cover of Gaurdians of Knowhere #1 and not in the actual story. This is the same deal as Deadpool’s Secret Secret Wars #2 Gwenpool variant which is currently fetching over $20 a copy.

 

That’s all I got this week. Until next time, carpe comics!

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Trailer Snark (March 18, 2016 Theatrical Trailers)

Welcome to Trailer Snark, a weekly column covering trailers for movies that will be released this week with thoughts from our roster of bloggers (Jessica from The Female Perspective, Ken from The Crank File, Jim from The Front Row View, Rob from Spector for Hire, and Great Stories founder Chris).  Thanks for reading, and enjoy the previews!

Last Week:  Zootopia makes it two weeks in a row in the top slot, fending off a challenge from 10 Cloverfield Lane and others with ease.  The animated Disney hit took in another $50M to bring its total to $142.6M.  The aforementioned Cloverfield sequel managed a $25.2M opening in second.  Deadpool held fast in third with another $10.8M to add to its $328M total and just ahead of fourth place London Has Fallen ($10.6M/$38.8M).  Whiskey Tango Foxtrot rounded out the top five ($4.6M/$14.5M).  Three other debuts occupied the sixth through eighth, but failing to make much of an impact as follows:  The Perfect Match ($4.1M), The Young Messiah ($3.4M), and The Brothers Grimsby ($3.1M).  Gods of Egypt placed ninth ($2.5M/$27.3M) and Risen in tenth ($2.2M/$32.3M).  And now lets look at this week’s new releases.

Allegiant Pt 1 (Lionsgate) – Action/Drama
Rated PG-13 for intense violence and action, thematic elements, and some partial nudity
Tag Line: What makes us different ties us together.
Starring:  Shailene Woodley, Naomi Watts, Jeff Daniels, Theo James
Plot: After the earth-shattering revelations of Insurgent, Tris must escape with Four beyond the wall that encircles Chicago to finally discover the shocking truth of what lies behind it.
Running Time: 121 minutes

Chris: Sadly, I will probably see this one in theaters due to a teen kid, but it won’t be by choice.
Jessica: Never made it through the 1st one, couldn’t possibly care less about this one.
Jim: Or The Slumber Games Part 12. The first one didn’t impress me.  I’m beginning to get tired of CGI stunts with mere mortals doing things that their bodies couldn’t possibly do in real life. No thanks.
Rob: Pass.  On the series.

Miracles from Heaven (TriStar) – Drama
Rated PG for thematic material, including accident and medical images
Tag Line: How do you explain the impossible?
Starring: Jennifer Garner, Kylie Rogers, Queen Latifah
Plot: A young girl suffering from a rare digestive disorder finds herself miraculously cured after surviving a terrible accident.
Running Time: 109 minutes

Rob: Pass.  On the “miracle”.
Chris: Another emotional roller coaster type true story.  Bad things happening to kids is always tough to watch on screen, but at least this one shows a victory in the end.
Jessica: This one did nothing for me, a typical story about kids getting hurt and a “miracle”, not really something that makes me run to the theater.
Jim: Life is scary enough without having to sit through sick kid movies, even if there’s a happy ending. Pass.

Midnight Special (Warner Bros) – Adventure/Drama/Sci-Fi
Rated PG-13 for some violence and action
Tag Line: He’s not like us.
Starring: Michael Shannon, Joel Edgerton, Kirsten Dunst, Adam Driver
Plot: A father and son go on the run after the dad learns his child possesses special powers.
Running Time: 111 minutes

Jim: Interesting-looking rental.
Rob: This looks like a possible rental down the road, but not big screen caliber for me.
Chris: OK, I just had to watch that trailer twice.  I don’t know what is going on, but I want to find out!
Jessica: Oh yes! Great actors, looks like an interesting story. If this is done right it could be really good.

The Bronze (Sony Picture Classics) – Comedy
Rated R for strong sexual content, graphic nudity, language throughout and some drug use
Tag Line:  There’s no place like third.
Starring: Melissa Rauch, Gary Cole, Sebastian Stan
Plot: A foul-mouthed former gymnastics bronze medalist must fight for her local celebrity status when a new young athlete’s star rises in town.
Running Time: 108 minutes

Jessica: Well, huh, this looks either really funny or really bad, not quite sure which it is yet.
Jim: This looks funny, although there’s the possibility that it could wear pretty thin after about 20 minutes.
Rob: Pass.  Wow, rough week.
Chris: Melissa Rauch steps out of Big Bang Theory for a different kind of laugh.  The trailer didn’t exactly have me in stitches, but I’ll check it out on Netflix down the road.

The Program (Entertainment One) – Bio/Drama/Sports
Rated R for language
Tag Line: Winning was in his blood.
Starring: Ben Foster, Chris O’Dowd
Plot: An Irish sports journalist becomes convinced that Lance Armstrong’s performances during the Tour de France victories are fueled by banned substances. With this conviction, he starts hunting for evidence that will expose Armstrong.
Running Time: 103 minutes

Chris: Like so many others, I was crushed to find out that Lance Armstrong doped his way to legend.  Ben Foster seems perfectly cast here.  I am in.
Jessica: I LOVE Ben Foster (310 To Yuma, brilliance) but i really have no interest in Lance Armstrong’s story. Possibly at-home viewer for me.
Jim: I know that Lance has his followers, but I’m not interested, despite the great cast. OK, so kill me, I’m more interested in an embittered gymnast!
Rob: I’d rent this down the road, but again another film that really doesn’t need a theatrical release.

Krisha (A24) – Comedy/Drama
Rated R for language, substance abuse and some sexual content
Tag Line: None
Starring: Krisha Fairchild, Olivia Grace Applegate
Plot: Krisha returns for Thanksgiving dinner after ten years away from her family, but past demons threaten to ruin the festivities.
Running Time: 83 minutes

Rob: Zero interest.  Pass.
Chris:  I was a bit disturbed by the trailer on some level.  Family dysfunction is on full display here.
Jessica: Meh. Seen movies like this many times before, it might be good but I might just not care enough to watch it. We get enough dysfunction in reality.
Jim: Predictable-looking dysfunctional family saga.

Tickets Purchased:  One for Midnight Special (Chris) and One for The Bronze (Jim).  Rob and Jessica at home watching the new season of Daredevil.

Word is Thirst, or was it Third is Worst?
Word is Thirst, or was it Third is Worst?
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The Female Perspective: Superhero Toys For Girls Are Here!

Welcome! This is a weekly blog* by Author J.L. Metcalf where I discuss anything and everything that strikes my fancy. If you have ideas on what you think I should write about, please send me an email via my website!

For now, sit back, relax and enjoy the blog!

*All views expressed in “The Female Perspective” are those of J.L. Metcalf, not Great Stories, Inc.


I’ve written before about the lack of superhero toys for girls. The almost complete absence of Black Widow merchandise for the last few Captain America and Avengers movies has been insulting to say the least. That seems to be changing for the better, thank goodness!

After a fairly big backlash against Hasbro for not having Rey toys from the newest Star Wars film (which they rectified asap after giving us all the lame excuse that it would give away plot secrets, puh-leese) we have recently been made aware that they will FINALLY have Black Widow toys to align with the Captain America: Civil War and I am pleased as punch.

One of the few Rey toys released prior to the film. (Courtesy of Erik Kain from Forbes.com/http://www.forbes.com/sites/erikkain/2016/01/25/excluding-rey-from-star-wars-the-force-awakens-toys-is-really-dumb/#37119cb55c1a)
One of the few Rey toys released prior to the film. (Courtesy of Erik Kain from Forbes.com/http://www.forbes.com/sites/erikkain/2016/01/25/excluding-rey-from-star-wars-the-force-awakens-toys-is-really-dumb/#37119cb55c1a)

I remember when I was a kid being sorely disappointed in the lack of superhero toys for girls. I had every single Princess Leia figure there was (wish I still had them!) and one lone Boba Fett, but my brother had all the other characters so we managed to make it work (when we were getting along), but I struggle to remember any other toys that I could have played with as a child, sure there was She-Ra, female Thundercats characters and the like, but I spent a lot of time playing with My Little Pony and Barbie toys, I just made them into superheroes. They rocked some pretty awesome ensembles, except for JEM because darn her, she was twice the size of Barbie so they couldn’t share their clothes! Ahh the trials and tribulations of a small child…

Anyway, the point I’m trying to make here is that I am REALLY happy to see the growing hoard of positive superhero toys for girls, but more than that, Black Widow is finally getting her due. Is this because of the upcoming appearance of Wonder Woman in the Batman/Superman movie? Does Marvel finally see that DC might have the beat in terms of movie merchandise? Because DC hasn’t had much of an issue with making sure WW makes her presence known in toy aisles. Of course, WW is a much more well-known and established character in the minds of young girls/grown woman. Hard to say, but regardless, accordion to Movieweb.com Black Widow will be “dominating” the toy markets with the release of the newest Marvel movie monster.

Leading up to the release of last summer’s Avengers: Age of Ultron, a controversy started brewing when none of Marvel’s merchandise for the movie featured Scarlett Johansson’s popular character Black Widow. The studioseems to have learned from its past mistakes, with Entertainment Weekly unveiling a slew of new products for the upcoming Captain America: Civil War, which prominently feature this beloved character. These items even correct a few mistakes from the Avengers: Age of Ultron merchandise. –Movieweb.com

YAY! The first time I saw Black Widow I was impressed with her general bad-assery and I was totally confused by her lack of presence for toys. Newsflash world, little girls like to play with toys based on their role models! Sure, I enjoyed playing with the “boy” toys all the time, Han Solo was one of my fave’s from Star Wars and I preferred some He-Man characters over my She-Ra dolls (but She-Ra toys really did rock, again, where did those go???? I’d almost kill to have them back!). I don’t believe that toys need to be segregated into boy and girl toys, I think they should just be TOYS. Some girls like to play with cars and swords, some boys like to play with Barbie, nothing should be taboo and it would be great to see all stores adopt the toy aisle idea, rather than splitting them between the sexes.

Black Widow will feature prominently in the toy marketing of "Captain America: Civil War", a big change after Marvel received a lot of complaints for her lack of presence in previous movies toy marketing campaigns.
Black Widow will feature prominently in the toy marketing of “Captain America: Civil War”, a big change after Marvel received a lot of complaints for her lack of presence in previous movies toy marketing campaigns.

Regardless, I am also impressed with Target’s newest line of toys, from DC Comics we have a pretty awesome line of female superhero toys. They range from Batgirl to Harley Quinn but I have ONE issue with them, in every description it says, “DC Hero Girls Action Figure” – leave off the girls and it would be perfection I say, but even that’s nit-picking. These toys are kind of amazing and I would totally want these if I was a kid (I kind of want them as an “adult)!

Target's newest line of Superhero toys is pretty awesome and girl-centric!
Target’s newest line of Superhero toys is pretty awesome and girl-centric!

I am happy to see that even in the short time I’ve been writing this blog, that positive changes like this are happening in the toy world. Those marketing people are starting to see that woman/girls/ladies do in fact like toys, they buy them, they collect them and it is more then appropriate that they become a part of the marketing machine of the big comic blockbusters coming up this year.

Change is slow but it IS happening.

Now, if you don’t mind, I’m going to go play with my toys.

Did you have a favorite toy as a child? What do you think of Target’s new line of Superhero toys? Sound off about toys in the comments section!

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The Crank File: What I’m Reading This Week 3/14/2016

Greetings and welcome to the Crank File, the only place on the internet where the file cranks you. Marvel teased us with a little Spider-man cameo at the end of the latest Civil War trailer, and it definitely made my web shooters go off. I haven’t been excited about a Spider-man movie in a long time, but that’s as close to a true-to-comics Spidey costume as you’ll get in a movie. And it looks amazing. Spider-man.

Here’s what I’m reading this week:

 

The Top of the Pile: Low #12

 

l12

Publisher: Image

Words: Rick Remender

Art: Greg Tocchini

What it is: ‘Shore of the Dying Light’ Part 2 At last Stel Caine reaches the surface, but what she finds there isn’t what she imagined.

Why we love it:  Low is set in a world where centuries ago mankind retreated into the sea to escape the inhospitable conditions on land. But as resources and air start to run thin, humanity is faced with the choice of a slow, under water extinction or reclaiming the land from where it came. After spending eleven issues navigating the dark depths of the ocean, Stel Cain is finally emerging topside and who know’s what our heroine will find there. Greg Tocchini’s use of water-colors throughout this series has been marvelous and I can’t wait to see how it looks when we transition from ocean to land. We’re big Rick Remender fans over here at the Crank File, and Low is probably our favorite of his creator owned work.

 

The Mainstream One: Extraordinary X-Men #8

 

XM8

Publisher: Marvel

Words: Jeff Lemire

Art: Ken Lashley

What it is: ‘APOCALYPSE WARS’ STARTS NOW! Mutantkind is an endangered species once more. But what better way to ensure your people see the future?than to skip ahead right to it? As the mutant race’s last hope is jettisoned into the time stream, the Extraordinary X-Men make a startling discovery: the fate of their kind is about to fall into the hands of one of their most formidable adversaries – the immortal APOCALYPSE. Now, the X-Men race into a perilous future, desperate to reclaim what was taken from them?and completely unaware of the horrors that await them.

Why we like it: The buzz surrounding this week’s issue is coming from a panel floating around the internet, showing a new team of horsemen consisting of Colossus, Venom, Moonknight and Deadpool. Anything Deadpool is hot these days, and this book could be in short supply on Wednesday making it a potential short term flip. But honestly, Extraordinary has been a wonderfully written X-Men book and you should be picking it up just for the story.

 

The Indie One: Clandestino #2

Clan2

Publisher: Black Mask

Words and Art: Amancay Nahuelpan

What it is: Things heat up for Clandestino as he attacks the military prison where Leena is held before hurtling on a high-octane, action-packed chase. Meanwhile, General Kapala continues laying waste to rebels who threaten his regime. Guns shoot in all directions and no one is safe in this revolutionary thrill-ride by the artist of Young Terrorists.

Why we like it: Clandestino #2 makes the list is because it also marks the return of Black Mask. Last year Black Mask was the little label that could. The darling of indie comics scored big with some of the best titles from 2015, like We Can Never Go Home, Space Riders and Young Terrorists. However the company lost a lot of momentum as long delays in their release schedules resulted in backlash from their fan base. In a recent post, Black Mask announced that they had settled their legal issues which were causing delays and that they would be back putting out kick-ass comics in 2016. With a new series ‘4 Kids Walk into a Bank’ kicking off in April and new issues of Young Terrorists solicited for April and May, I’m hoping for a spectacular come back.

 

The #1 One: Roche Limit Monadic #1

 

RLM1

Publisher: Image

Words: Michael Moreci

Art: Kyle Charles

What it is: Earth is in ruins after the Black Sun’s annihilation of the planet. Now, in the last remaining human city, its inhabitants fight for survival while a chosen few realize that their world may not be what it seems.

Why we like it: The first Roche Limit volume was an unexpected gem. It was dark and philosophical, an intelligent sci-fi comic that made its social commentary without beating you over the head with it. I had planned on trade waiting volume 2 but flipping through the first issue of Roche Limit Clandestiny, I was hooked and immediately added it to my pull list. There’s no apprehension this time around. I’m fully on board for Monadic, the final arc in Roche Limit’s brilliant run.

 

The One I’m Buying for the Cover: International Iron Man #1 (Dell Otto variant)

 

IIM1

Publisher: Marvel

Words: Brian Michael Bendis

Art: Alex Maleev

What it is: Who is Tony Stark, really? Since learning that he was adopted as a baby, this question has cast a shadow over Stark’s life. Now, it is time to uncover what his legacy truly is, a journey that will carry Tony into new directions as a man and as a super hero. Alongside his strange new quasi-ally Doctor Doom, Iron Man will discover new things about the Marvel Universe he didn’t know existed before! A character deconstruction from Bendis and Maleev along the lines of their award-winning DAREDEVIL run!

Why we like it: Dell Otto is probably the hottest cover artist at the moment, and while his work hasn’t quite reached the popularity of Adam Hughes or Alex Ross, it won’t be long before he will be among their ranks. I love the classical realism of Dell Otto’s painted art-style and I am happy that this kind of artwork is being recognized and gaining appreciation within the collecting community.

 

That’s all for this week. Like something that I missed? Leave it in the comments below. Until next time, carpe comics!

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Trailer Snark (March 11, 2016 Theatrical Trailers)

Welcome to Trailer Snark, a weekly column covering trailers for movies that will be released this week with thoughts from our roster of bloggers (Jessica from The Female Perspective, Ken from The Crank File, Jim from The Front Row View, Rob from Spector for Hire, and Great Stories founder Chris).  Thanks for reading, and enjoy the previews!

Last Week:  Let’s hear it for Disney folks!  Zootopia ruled the box office, and it wasn’t even close.  $73.7M in receipts for their latest animated film.  Meanwhile, it’s closest competitor London Has Fallen managed to do more business than Deadpool with $21.7M and good for second place.  The aforementioned merc with a mouth came in third and still doing brisk business with $16.4M to add to its $311.1M domestic haul.  Unreal.  Whiskey Tango Foxtrot debuted at number four with $7.6M and in fifth was Gods of Egypt with $5M/$$22.8M.  The rest of the top ten went as follows:  Risen ($3.8M/$28.6M), Kung Fu Panda 3 ($3.5M/$133.8M), The Revenant ($3.3M/$175.9M), Eddie the Eagle ($3.1M/$10.8M), and The Witch ($2.5M/$20.9M).  What does this weekend have in store…well, lets see.

10 Cloverfield Lane (Paramount) – Drama/Mystery/Sci-Fi
Rated PG-13 for thematic material including frightening sequences of threat with some violence, and brief language
Tag Line: Monsters come in many forms.
Starring:  John Goodman, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Bradley Cooper
Plot: After getting in a car accident, a woman is held in a shelter by two men, who claim the outside world is affected by a widespread chemical attack.
Running Time: 103 minutes

Jessica: I’m curious, but not curious enough to pay for it. I thought the first Cloverfield was only okay, it actually gave me wicked motion sickness so I had to close my eyes for a lot of it, perhaps I need to revisit that one. Anyway, I’m curious about this and I simply adore John Goodman!
Chris: Looks riveting, and I pretty much will watch anything that JJ Abrams is attached to.  Too fanboy, no?
Ken: I passed on the first one because I was already burnt out on shaky cam, found footage movies, but fortunately the sequel doesn’t look or feel anything like the original. The tension and feeling of dread was palpable.
Jim: Loved the first movie, shaky cam and all. I’m there.

The Young Messiah (Focus Features) – Drama
Rated PG – 13 for some violence and thematic elements
Tag Line: Discover the savior when He was a child.
Starring:  Sean Bean, Adam Greaves-Neal
Plot: Tells the story of Jesus Christ at age seven as he and his family depart Egypt to return home to Nazareth. Told from his childhood perspective, it follows young Jesus as he grows into his religious identity.
Running Time: 111 minutes

Jim: Not as deathly solemn as some of the other trailers for recent Biblical flicks. A smidgen of interest.
Jessica: No thanks.
Chris: My Lord and Savior plus Sean Bean?  I must have died and gone to heaven.
Ken: This movie would sell more tickets if they had gone with the original working title, Jesus: The Force Awakens.

The Perfect Match (Lionsgate) – Comedy/Romance
Rated R for sexuality, some nudity, and language throughout
Tag Line: It’s what everyone is looking for.
Starring: Terrence Jenkins, Paula Patton
Plot: A playboy named Charlie, convinced that all his relationships are dead, meets the beautiful and mysterious Eva. Agreeing to a casual affair, Charlie then wants a bit more from their relationship.
Running Time: 96 minutes

Ken: I felt like I watched the entire movie in the trailer. And it was still way too long.
Jim: One of those movies where only hot-looking women are allowed to be in. Conventional trailer, but lively.
Jessica: Yawn. I’d rather watch the grass grow.
Chris: OK….maybe I will think about it…no.

The Brothers Grimsby (Columbia) – Comedy
Rated R for strong crude sexual content, graphic nudity, violence, language, and some drug use
Tag Line: MI6 has a brand new tool.
Starring: Sacha Baron Cohen, Isla Fisher, Rebel Wilson
Plot: A new assignment forces a top spy to team up with his football hooligan brother.
Running Time: 83 minutes

Jessica: I only thought Cohen was moderately funny in Borat, he has gotten a lot less funnier as time has gone on. I’ll pass on this one.
Chris: I am with Jessica on this one.  One hit wonder!
Ken: Looks so juvenile, but should be good for a few senseless laughs. Streamer.
Jim: No.

Creative Control (Amazon Studios) – Drama
Rated R for strong sexual content, nudity, language and drug use.
Tag Line: A story about virtually everything.
Starring: Nora Zeheter, Benjamin Dickson
Plot: In near future Brooklyn, an ad executive uses a new Augmented Reality technology to conduct an affair with his best friend’s girlfriend…sort of.
Running Time: 97 minutes

Chris: Where is the color dammit?  Actually, color won’t make it interesting, so pass.
Ken: I actually really liked the visuals in this movie. I think there is potential here to explore the already blurring lines between reality and digital reality.
Jim: Have to admit, looks interesting. Some good buzz on this.
Jessica: Oh good lord no. Not a hipster movie about technology!

Eye in the Sky (Bleecker Street Media) – Drama/War
Rated R for some violent images and language
Tag Line: The commander is in England. The drone pilot is in America. The terrorist is in Kenya. And the authority to strike is up in the air.
Starring: Helen Mirren, Aaron Paul, Alan Rickman
Plot: Col. Katherine Powell, a military officer in command of an operation to capture terrorists in Kenya, sees her mission escalate when a girl enters the kill zone triggering an international dispute over the implications of modern warfare.
Running Time: 102 minutes

Jim: Nice cast including the late, great Alan Rickman, although too similar to other trailers for this type of story.
Jessica: Oh thank god, finally, a GOOD movie. Fantastic talent (RIP Prof Snape) and an interesting and timely story. I don’t know that I would pay for it but I will eventually definitely see this one (how’s that for being weirdly noncommital?)
Chris: Can’t say that I am envious of those people who make these life and death decisions, and that makes the subject matter all the more interesting to me.
Ken: Wasn’t feeling it.


Hello, My Name is Doris (Roadside Attractions) – Comedy/Drama/Romance
Rated R for language
Tag Line: She’s not ready to act her age.
Starring:  Sally Field, Max Greenfield, Beth Behrs
Plot: A self-help seminar inspires a sixty-something woman to romantically pursue her younger co-worker.
Running Time: 95 minutes

Ken: Ha, ok I was going into this trailer thinking it was going to be a waste of two and a half minutes, but that looked pretty darn charming.
Jim: From the director of one of my favorite dumb films of all time, Wet Hot American Summer—looks funny, good to see Sally Field in a comedy.
Jessica: OH! This looks wonderfully funny and touching. Would totally see this if I weren’t saving my movie passes for Superman versus Batman 😉
Chris: Would I have to trade in my man card in saying that this one looks charming?  Small screen charming to be sure.

Tickets Purchased:  3 for 10 Cloverfield Lane (Ken, Jim, and Chris) and 1 for Hello, My Name is Doris (Jessica).

The real secret of 10 Cloverfield Lane?
The real secret of 10 Cloverfield Lane?
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The Female Perspective: You Should Be Watching…

Welcome! This is a weekly blog* by Author J.L. Metcalf where I discuss anything and everything that strikes my fancy. If you have ideas on what you think I should write about, please send me an email via my website!

For now, sit back, relax and enjoy the blog!

*All views expressed in “The Female Perspective” are those of J.L. Metcalf, not Great Stories, Inc.


Are you looking for a new TV show to enjoy? Do you enjoy dystopian fiction? Post-apocalyptic craziness with teens and adults? Romance? Double crossing? Swordplay? Then I’ve got the perfect show for you! The 100 is seriously one of the best shows that I finally just caught up with recently. My boyfriend has been telling me to watch it for awhile now and I just didn’t have the time. Fortunately, a cold laid me up for a few days and it was the perfect time to binge watch The 100 on Netflix until I caught up to the current Season 3.

Download-The-100-Tv-Series-Full-Episodes

The 100 is based on a trilogy of books by author Kass Morgan released in 2013. According to Wikipedia, TV execs were interested in the stories before the books were officially published and the show premiered in 2014 on the CW. (Authors note: That is one extremely lucky author. I’ve never heard of a book being optioned before it’s even published! I’m super jealous now.) The show itself has a fairly simple, if depressing premise, 97 years after the world is (supposedly) destroyed by nuclear bombs we find that humanity has managed to survive by living on space stations, called The Arc, but their time is running out, their air is running out. To help save air and to also see if the Earth is habitable (though science and logic say it takes about 200 years for the world to clear after nuclear war but hey, it’s TV!), the powers that be on The Arc decide to send the juvenile delinquents/offenders down to Earth, and guess how many of them there are? You guessed it! 100 teenagers go down to Earth and find that Earth is actually livable, sort of.

What the kids quickly come to discover is that Earth is not all it’s cracked up to be, yeah sure there are trees and fresh air and flowers and radioactive butterfly’s, but there are also people throwing spears and running through the woods in pretty fearsome ensembles. Which can mean only one thing, Earth harbors survivors.

These kids seriously never get a break, from the moment they land on Earth things go sideways crazy. Grounders (the habitants of the Earth post-war) run rampant and we soon learn about the Mountain Men as well. There’s lots to fear on this new Earth, not the least of which is a 2-headed deer that roams majestically through the forest and acid fog that kills in bloodthirsty fashion.

The-100-Lexa

Things aren’t looking up for the grownups on the Arc either, they are running out of air faster than expected and everyone is angry and looking for a way out of their space Hell. It’s a compelling story in many ways, not the least of which is that what turns out happening is that women end up being pretty much in charge. The main character, Clarke Griffin (played by Eliza Taylor) is quickly shown to be strong, smart and more than capable of wrangling these kids who have become a hipster-esque post-apocalyptic version of Lord Of The Flies. Her mother (the main doctor on The Arc) is equally in control up in space. Then, when we meet the Grounder’s leader, we see that it is also a woman.

It’s freakin’ fantastic.

I cannot stress enough how surprised and pleased I was to discover that women seem to be the ones running things in this new world. Sure, it’s not perfect, but what is? What I really dig about The 100 is the fact that characters are constantly changing. Someone I think is a really dink turns out to be smart and savvy. A love triangle that could have bogged the show down for season after season instead resolves itself in an episode or two and it’s dang refreshing, it’s adult but yet, it’s about teenagers. It’s a paradox of themes and ideas and yet, they all work astoundingly well.

Take one of my favorite characters, Octavia, not only does she have a fabulous name, but she also becomes this total bad-ass warrior woman by the current season 3. She starts out kind of devil may care, party girl but quickly, once confronted with death of someone she loves and her own injuries and more, she becomes stronger and more capable than you would have expected when you first meet her. It’s smart writing. It’s a smart show. It reminds me that writing smart young women is actually something that can happen (and something that the writers on Supergirl should take note of). I used to think that TV shows on the CW were silly and boring tales of soap opera romance but with such hits like The Arrow and The Flash and now The 100, I have definitely rethought my stance on the CW. It’s a network that isn’t afraid to take chances with it’s shows and it makes them better, smarter and infinitely more enjoyable to watch.

The Arc
The Arc

Currently The 100 is in the middle of its 3rd season and has been getting some heat lately due to the death of a prominent character who was also a lesbian. Many are saying that killing off a lesbian character is unfair and “too fast” but the fact is, it made sense for the timeline of the show, it had to happen to keep things moving forward. This season is ripe with political intrigue that mirrors our own current political quagmire as well as raising issues of what’s right and what’s wrong in a world at war and complex themes of love and honor. It’s what makes the show as smart and interesting as it is. Is the 3rd season as good as seasons 1 and 2? The jury is still out on that one, I for one was kind of glad the character died last week because I thought she weakened the story a bit and it was getting a bit tired. It’s a brutal world they live in now and death happens a lot, it makes sense on this Earth.

Regardless of any controversy, The 100 is a show worth checking out. If you are a fan of strong women who know how to fight for what’s right (hopefully) then you’ll enjoy the holy heck out of The 100!

Have you seen The 100? Do you love it/hate it? Tell me why in the comments! Do you have any show recommendations? Tell me!