Unsolicited Advice is the column where I tell you to check something out, although though you didn’t ask for recommendations and who am I to give you advice? This week, I’m strongly advising you check out the first season of Ash vs Evil Dead, even though who asked me, anyway? This is a spoiler-free review.
Medium almost certainly qualifies as one of the more overlooked aspects of storytelling. When it comes to pop culture, stories are regularly told once on paper and, should they prove popular enough through that medium, they are told again on screen; those that prove exceptionally profitable on screen might even be retold again. When it comes to extended universes, however, different chapters of the same story might be told through several different mediums. In some cases, this may lead to one branch of the story controlling the rest; in other instances, the variety of mediums only serves to strengthen the story as a whole. We’ll look into the many mediums of Star Wars and Harry Potter to see how their multiple methods of storytelling affect their respective extended universes.
When attempting to create a cohesive extended universe, what qualifies as part of the story is often just as important as what is excluded. Enter the notion of canon: the portion of the narrative that is considered official and definitive. By properly employing canon, a storyteller can provide parameters for what will be included within the narrative – an essential element of extended universe building. Let’s look at Miguel de Cervantes’ Don Quixote and George Lucas’ Star Wars to see how delineating what qualifies as canon creates the boundaries of an extended universe. Continue reading “Other Worlds Than These: Extended Universes 201”
Deadpool has arrived on the big screen amid much fanfare, and its success guarantees we haven’t seen the last of either the Merc with the Mouth or R-rated superhero fare. While the quality of the latter will vary from movie to movie, the quality of the former seems guaranteed by the near-religious zealotry actor Ryan Reynolds brings to the role. Rumored to be at least in part responsible for the leaked footage which momentarily distracted nerds across America from the MCU-dominated 2014 Comicon and lead to the movie being green-lit, Reynolds was extremely outspoken in his belief that proper treatment of the Deadpool character would lead to a successful flick. Now that the movie has earned more than five times its budget at the box office, all that remains to argued is whether or not Reynoldspool qualifies as the proper treatment of the character.
He’s known by many names – the Regenerating Degenerate, the Merc with a Mouth, Ninja Spider-Man – but thanks to a hard R-rated movie that’s exceeded even the most miserly Fox executive’s expectations, you’re about to see a lot more of him. At least if you are going to suffer a DP OD, it’ll be on the good stuff – Ryan Reynolds has brought a version of the character to the screen that remains faithful to the best incarnations of his comic-bound counterpart. But before assessing how well Reynoldspool fills the blood-splattered spandex, let’s take a look back at the elements that made Wade Wilson into the superhero we know and sometimes tolerate today.
Hollywood’s fascination with sequels has never been questioned: when a movie is successful, the studio may order another installment. The studio will generally expect that audience recognition of the brand will boost ticket sales higher than they would climb on a new and untested property. However, the current onslaughts of “revivals” don’t exactly follow the traditional blueprint for a standard sequel. By examining three of the most popular franchises to be revitalized – Jurassic World, The X-Files: Season 10, and Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens – certain trends unique to these restarted franchises become evident.