I don’t want to see any occurrence of the phrase "Slam Evil" in the comments.

§ May 15th, 2008 § Filed under Uncategorized Comments Off on I don’t want to see any occurrence of the phrase "Slam Evil" in the comments.

So I finally got around to watching, or at least starting to watch, The Phantom, the 1996 live-action adaptation of the Ghost Who Wears Purple Tights. I’m only an hour in, because my life is so full with activity and responsibility, says the man who writes a daily comics weblog, and I’m gonna try to wrap it up tomorrow or the next day, so don’t post any spoilers in the comments please.

‘Course, I may post a spoiler or two for the first hour, so if you haven’t seen this 12-year-old movie yet, and you think you’re going to soon, you may want to skip down to the horizontal line.

Well, “spoilers” may be overstating it a bit. For example, I like the film well enough so far. It’s lighthearted and jokey without being too campy, Billy Zane as the Phantom is both superheroically muscled and charmingly goofy, and Treat Williams leaves toothmarks in the scenery as our mustachioed villain. I also like that they just kinda go for it with the Phantom’s costume, with its full-on purpleness and its black mask and skull motif, without going into any detail as to why a skin-tight purple outfit, exactly. Because, really, how’re you gonna explain it?

The action sequences are fun, with dangerous bridges and horse chases and the like. But that bit of business of jumping from a plane running low on gas to a horse below…they really didn’t sell me on that, I’m afraid. And for a plane that was nearly out of gas, that was some huge-ass explosion it created when it smacked into the cliff face. I’m sure some residual gas ‘n’ fumes in the tank might have caused some boomage, but this looked like the plane had some dynamite stashed aboard, too. If I have any experts on the topic out there, feel free to chime in.

Like I said, it’s fun, if slight, so far, with dialogue that careens between “light and witty” to “downright clunky” (the latter being pretty much every word uttered by Catherine Zeta-Jones in this film). Hopefully the last forty minutes will be reasonably entertaining as well.

By the way, looking up The Phantom on the Internet Movie Database revealed this bit of business:

No, “box offices flops” don’t play into the plot of The Phantom. But “stabbed in the eye” — a click on that link reveals another hundred-something flicks with the same plot point (including South Park, Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan, and Cube 2: Hypercube). I was going to say “are there people out there actively seeking out movies featuring eye-stabbings” and then I realized of course there are.

Some notes about a couple of comics that came out this week:

  • The Final Crisis Sketchbook: if this were a promotional item, designed to get folks excited about the forthcoming series, then it should have been given away for free (like the Avengers/Invaders giveaway from a few weeks ago). If it’s a “behind the scenes” thing intended for sale, it may have been better served coming out after the series was over so that it could include more content with more spoileriffic detail in regards to character designs, plot points, etc. Perhaps it should even have been extra back-up material in the hardcover/trade.

    Not saying I didn’t think it was neat, and that I didn’t like the preview sketches, but it smacked more of a Wizard preview than something DC is trying to get three bucks for.

  • I think Titans #2 had a production error, with one page missing at least one word balloon, or perhaps even all dialogue and sound effects. The two page splash features Nightwing responding “yes, way,” which implies a “no way!” word balloon prior, but none is to be seen on the page before. This isn’t a title I read, but I was just flipping through a copy at the shop, so if I missed the “no way” balloon in that story, just let me know.
  • Psychic nosebleeds in this week’s Booster Gold (#9): paging Doctor Scott!
  • I haven’t read Un-Men #10 yet, so don’t do this, if you could. Thanks.

I’m probably going to go back and address some comments in the “Lex Luthor/Swamp Thing” thread on Friday, so if you have anything more to say there, let ‘er rip.

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