Agents of SHIELD comes to ABC this fall

14-May-13 4:38 PM by
Filed under Television; 1 comment.

It's not enough that Marvel will, by the end of this year, have produced three Iron Man movies, two Incredible Hulks, two Thors, a Captain America, and The Avengers. Having dominated the silver screen, they're now moving to master the smaller screen with this fall's debut of the television series Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.. The show, which has been in production since 2012, officially passed the pilot stage on May 10 and is scheduled to air Tuesdays at 8 PM this fall on ABC, made official by the trailer:

(There's also a 30-second teaser trailer that's rather uninspiring.)

After watching the above, I'm curious what previous shows S.H.I.E.L.D. will draw upon. The trailer makes the agency sound like hunters of the superpowered, which is too reminiscent of Heroes, a show that started with great promise but quickly crashed and burned. Or will Marvel's show eschew a serial nature in favor of a phenomenon of the week, in the style of The X-Files?

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Application to SHIELD

26-Sep-12 3:12 PM by
Filed under Humor, Television; Comments Off on Application to SHIELD

In 2012, four Marvel superheroes combined their franchises into one summer blockbuster: The Avengers. This team consisting of Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, and The Incredible Hulk was assembled by agents of the secret military agency known as Strategic Homeland Intervention, Enforcement and Logistics Division — SHIELD for short.

ABC wants to know more about this agency and has ordered a television pilot. Best of all, they're tapping Avengers director Joss Whedon — creator of Buffy, Dollhouse, and Dr. Horrible — to co-write and possibly direct.

Just as SHIELD did, Whedon is assembling an all-star team, and graphic designer Adam Levermore wants in. He has worked on the Battlestar Galactica, Serenity, and The Guild franchises, which he feels make him the perfect candidate to work in the super nerdy world of superheroes. Although I'm not familiar with his name and only vaguely familiar with his work, I have to admit that he makes a convincing case for his application to the SHIELD series:

I'd hire him. Wouldn't you?

And if you don't get the closing joke to Adam, you need to see "Once More, With Feeling"!

(Hat tip to Cheezburger)

Avengers Assemble

11-Oct-11 10:08 PM by
Filed under Trailers; 2 comments.

Ladies and gentlemen… boys and girls… I present to you: the summer blockbuster of 2012.

Marvel superheroes Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk, Captain America, and Thor join forces as the Avengers, under the direction of Joss Whedon of Buffy and Firefly fame. The team's individual films have, on the whole, been good to great, so even I, only an occasional fan of Marvel Comics, find myself with high hopes and expectations for this collaboration.

This raises the question: Why can't DC Comics do this with their stable of legendary heroes? Their Batman franchise is going gangbusters, but they've so far failed to gain traction with Superman (though a reboot is coming in 2013) or Green Lantern. The IMDb lists a Wonder Woman TV show coming later this year, with a movie in 2015. By contrast, Marvel assembled their team in just four years.

We'll likely not have an answer until well after The Avengers' May 4, 2012, debut.

UPDATE: Do not be fooled by cheap imitations!

Or wanna-bes!

A Prescription for Horrible

04-Aug-08 12:00 PM by
Filed under Television; 5 comments.

Though actors enjoy the fame that comes with being in front of the camera, a cineaste has no trouble picking out the talent that raised those actors to stardom. Writers and directors like Carl Reiner, Sidney Sheldon, Gene Roddenberry, and Charles-Burrows-Charles brought us some of our favorite shows. Joss Whedon is no different, having created both Buffy the Vampire Slayer, which was a unique combination of comedy, fantasy, sci-fi; and Firefly, a space-western.

Though it may be old news to us hardcore geeks, I'm surprised that Mr. Whedon's latest project continues to fly under the radar of the Internet in general. Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog debuted last month and somewhat defies description, thanks in part to its misleading name. It's not a blog so much as a vlog, and not so much that as self-commentary interspersed with action sequences and musical numbers — which, without lyrics and a bouncing ball, are no more sing-along than any other musical. The cast credits include Neil Patrick Harris of Doogie Howser, M.D., Cabaret, and RiffTrax; Felicia Day of The Guild; and Nathan Fillion of Buffy and Firefly. Watch as Dr. Horrible (Harris), an up-and-coming villain who does the wrong things for the right reasons, learns to overcome his own shyness and ineptitude while pursuing his master plan to defeat nemesis Captain Hammer (Fillion), win the girl (Day), and take over the WORLD!

The quirky humor and unusual juxtaposition of genre and music make Dr. Horrible worth checking out, though the means to do so varies day to day, as the producers have seemingly waffled over the property's commercial direction. As each episode was released, it was available as streaming, non-embeddable video — but if you read the fine print (which I didn't), you'd know they would disappear on July 20th, to be sold exclusively at iTunes at $1.99/episode or $3.99 for an all-inclusive season pass. The three "acts" that compose Season 1 recently popped back up on the Dr. Horrible Web site, again as streaming video, but with embedded commercials. Since this format is how broadcast television shows are often archived online, it seems a fair deal to me. Regardless, we bloggers are left with only this trailer to redistribute:

You don't have to be a Firefly fanatic and kiss the ground Joss Whedon walks on to appreciate Dr. Horrible. I've bought all three episodes but haven't watched the second two yet, and I don't suspect I'll be memorizing the lyrics anytime soon (unless a separate soundtrack CD becomes available). It's just a fun show with broad appeal across geek culture, and a nifty demonstration of a series made for the Internet instead of just repurposed for it.

(Hat tip to The Standard)

Light Up the Sky

03-Apr-07 2:40 PM by
Filed under Films, Television; 7 comments.

As a fan of Joss Whedon's Buffy the Vampire Slayer, but not a fan of television in general, I was aware of but unexposed to his "space western" series, Firefly, which was cancelled in December 2002 after 14 episodes. Easier to consume was the 2005 feature film adaptation, Serenity, which I enjoyed last year, prompting me to recently, finally, watch the original show.

Holy cow. How was this ever cancelled?? I've been enjoying Star Trek for 20 years now, but I've never seen anything like Firefly. What a breath of fresh air!

To understand the show's uniqueness, you should know its background:
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