andraste: The reason half the internet imagines me as Patrick Stewart. (Default)
[personal profile] andraste
Well, that was about nine million times more fun than the comics event of the same name.

They certainly could have billed this as Avengers 3, but in the end I'm glad they didn't, as it puts the focus on Captain America, and that works for the narrative. (It also gives them a reason to leave out Hulk and Thor, and the film already has plenty of characters. Besides, they would have raised the level of unfortunate property damage even further.)

This was always going to be an easier story to do in the MCU, but I still had my doubts, and I'm happy they were unfounded. The history of openly operating super people in this universe is a lot shorter, and very different in some significant ways, and it helps a whole lot that the point at issue is specifically oversight of the Avengers, not registering and controlling everyone with super powers. (The only party of comics-verse Civil War I liked was the incredulous reaction of most of the mutants.)

It also helps that sides have good points. Super people operating without any supervision have caused a lot of damage in the MCU, and all the stated reasons for putting some restrictions on the Avengers all make sense. I'd say that having a bunch of Americans undertake unsupervised combat missions all over the world whenever they feel like it is a disaster waiting to happen, but it's already happened several times. I can certainly see why Tony ended up feeling the way he does, especially since Steve's point of view is so obviously biased by his friendship with Bucky.

But on the other hand ... we're also talking about a universe where SHIELD turned out to be choc full of HYDRA agents. And while they were a shadowy spy organization that could ALSO have used more oversight, Agents of SHIELD has established that several of the richest and most powerful people on the planet were part of HYDRA, too. While HYDRA are gone now, I can't imagine that a similar league of super villains would have much trouble getting control of a United Nations panel. Never mind potential corruption, what about outright mind control? The techniques used to brainwash the Winter Soldier(s) and other HYDRA operatives still exist, and so do people like Johann Fenhoff and Kilgrave (1). (I mean, someone could still mind control the Avengers directly, but that's not a problem that the U.N. can do anything about.)

So I theoretically support the idea that super powered people shouldn't just do whatever the hell they want with no oversight, but in practice, I think the Accords would ultimately lead to someone like Gideon Malick or Norman Osborne pulling the Avengers' strings. That's what always happens in superhero universes. (This is the same reason I don't think Batman should kill the Joker. Sure, it might seem like a better solution than locking him up in Arkham so he can escape again next month, but in a universe where death doesn't stick it wouldn't actually fix anything. He'd probably just come back as a superpowered zombie or something.)

So I guess my position is: I would be on Team Tony, but I don't think there's any way for that approach to work in the universe he exists in. Sorry, Tony, it's a good idea, but the laws of superhero fiction are on Steve's side.

Other things in the movie!

- Speaking of poor timing, oh, poor Steve getting that text message at the worst possible moment. I was sad about Peggy, but she did live an amazing life and die at a ripe old age, so it was Steve that I really hurt for.

- I guessed right away that the car belonged to Howard and Maria, and watching that 'flashback' was painful in the best way. Poor Tony. I can see why Steve and Natasha didn't tell him what happened, but finding out that your parents were murdered while standing next to the murderer is awful. I can't blame him for snapping.

- Heartbreaking details I only connected up later: Tony's mother is probably the reason there's a piano in his house. (At least in the first Iron Man, before he falls through it. Don't recall if he replaced it for the sequels.)

- I'm glad that Bucky was a fully-developed character here. He was understandably not himself all through Winter Soldier, but it was lovely to see shades of the man Steve was best friends with and know there was still a person to defend. (I mean, I think that in an ideal world Bucky would get a fair trial - and then be found innocent on account of brainwashing! - but the authorities were going to summarily execute him.)

- Zemo made a good villain, and I'm glad they left him alive. After all, some day he needs to escape and found the Thunderbolts ...

- The thing I was most excited for in this film was Black Panther, and I was not disappointed. I knew T'Chaka was doomed the instant he appeared, although the specifics were still a surprise, and liked T'Challa's character arc a lot. Looking forward to his solo film so much.

- Speaking of which, I think I was the only person in the theater who squeaked when Everett K. Ross introduced himself. Not because of Martin Freeman (although I think he's great casting) but because I love Christoper Priest's run on Black Panther. Now I really hope he's in the solo film and that it opens in media res with a scene from the climax, then cuts to Ross saying '... but I'm getting ahead of myself.'

- ... I guess this means that we'll get a lot of completely random Everett Ross/Steven Strange slash after November. Which is pretty hilarious, really.

- Having two people called Ross in the film was confusing, though. It took me until more than half way through to realize that when they said 'Secretary Ross' they were talking about Thunderbolt, not Everett.

- Half the cinema (including me) made annoyed noises when Steve kissed Sharon. However, it was worth it for the identical expressions on Sam and Bucky's faces a moment later *g*. I'm not really against the pairing in theory, although I think it's a bit weird for Steve to date Peggy's niece, I just don't think the build-up was adequate. They should have kept it friendly in this movie and introduced any romance further down the line. (And if Steve exits the Marvel Universe in some way during or after Infinity War, and they were worried they wouldn't have time later, what was the point of giving him another love interest anyway?)

- On the bright side, if Marvel are this keen to put a romantic subplot in EVERY SINGLE FILM regardless of whether or not it makes any sense, I guess it means Monica Lynne is a certainty for Black Panther. So that's nice (2).

- Vision and Scarlet Witch's subplot, on the other hand, was both very cute and terribly sad. I hope they sort things out! (I also hope that Vision's head does not get removed by Thanos. He and Wanda need to get together, or where are we going to get half the roster of Young Avengers from? Now that we've met Cassie Lang and know she's about five, the clock is ticking.)

- Spider-Man #3 is delightful, even my Spider-Man hating BFF thought he was adorable! I love that he kept telling everyone how cool they were during the fight. And I love that Tony makes a bunch of speeches about responsible superheroing and then goes and recruits a high school student to come to Germany and fight Captain America. (To his credit, he tells Peter to stay down when he gets concussed.) The flirting with Aunt May was priceless, although I hope that Tony and Pepper can work something out eventually.

- I am so, so happy that Rhodey didn't die. I was terribly worried that he was going to take the Goliath role in the MCU, so the spinal injury was a relief by comparison. The scene at the end with Tony might be my favourite moment in the whole film. I would not fault him for quitting the super hero business now, but I also don't think he needs to retire if he doesn't want to. It's not like he doesn't have a best friend who can modify the War Machine suit appropriately. Or build him a flying chair covered in missile launchers, if he happens to want one.

- Falcon continues to be delightful, and I really liked Natasha here. I saw her turn coming a mile away, but her reasons make sense at every point in the story. I am largely indifferent to Ant-Man, but his brief stint as Giant Man was certainly a good distraction.

- Oh dear, that poor, poor airport. I hope Tony has enough money in that future fund to pay the people of Leipzig for all the stuff that got wrecked. Maybe Black Panther can help out. (At least Ant-Man apologized for throwing a petrol truck that he thought was a water truck, but I don't think it ultimately made much difference to the destruction level.)

- Similarly, I hope all those cars (and that motorcyclist) were insured for Acts Of Superhero.

- I kept wondering if I'd somehow missed Stan Lee, but there he was! I am glad he found Mr. Stank eventually.

- I never thought I would be happily looking forward to Thanos turning up and trying to rip off Vision's head. But he will inspire the Avengers to reunite! Which they had better, because the official team are currently down to Iron Man, Vision and (maybe) War Machine, with Spider-Man as an irregular member who can't hero during school hours. Clearly they need to go on recruiting drive. (I suggest finding Monica Rambeau! They desperately need more women on the team.)

(1) Probably not Fenhoff himself, unless he got cryogenically frozen at some point. And obviously not Kilgrave.

(2) It's not as if they can use Storm. Which, frankly, is just as well.

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-30 05:29 pm (UTC)
selenak: (Bruce and Tony by Corelite)
From: [personal profile] selenak
(The only party of comics-verse Civil War I liked was the incredulous reaction of most of the mutants.)

I also liked the parts written by Brian Bendis, Christos Gage and Daniel Knauf. As for the Mark Millar main storyline: not so much. It wasn't JMS' finest hour with Spider-Man, either. (Likeadeuce used to have this hilarious icon of Peter referring to Tony as Bad Daddy and Steve as Good Daddy, which sums up the JMS part of Civil War pretty well.)

I'd say that having a bunch of Americans undertake unsupervised combat missions all over the world whenever they feel like it is a disaster waiting to happen, but it's already happened several times.

Which is why I wonder how differently this movie plays outside the US versus inside...

I see your point re: the superhero narrative and supervising organisations always ending up controlled by Evildoers. (And suddenly I wonder how many comic book writers vote Republican?) Before this happens in the MCU, though, I hope Tony gets around to founding the Order, because I need Henry Hellrung to exist in the MCU as well.

I see your Everett Ross/Stephen Strange slash and raise you a Middleearth crossover with Everett Ross/Thorin Oakenshield!

Such a relief about Rhodey! And Tony and T'Challa better pool their resources for the Leipzig airport. As I said in my review, it would have been far, far better if they had trashed the already empty (so no evacuation necessary) eternally unfinished new Berlin airport instead. This immediately would have made the Avengers heroes in Germany again since the whole thing is a national joke. Whereas the Leipzig airport is direly needed.

Poor Tony. I can see why Steve and Natasha didn't tell him what happened, but finding out that your parents were murdered while standing next to the murderer is awful. I can't blame him for snapping.

Same here. I've seen grumblings about Tony should have understood that Bucky was brainwashed and would never have done it in his right mind etc., and while he'll probably get there (we don't see him still in VENGEANCE mode at the end of the movie, after all), it's a bit much to demand that understanding at this specific moment.

I fear for the beetle. And the beetle owner. Those things are antiques by now. And it's not like he/they can sue Steve and expect money at this point. Otoh, Loki's stint in Stuttgart some years ago might have inspired German insurances to include a "act by superhero or supervillain" clause.

Re: Avengers needing to reunite and possible new female members, isn't a Captain Marvel (Carol Danvers, that is) movie rumored to be in the works? Surely she could join.

Re: Spidey 3, I want more of this relationship with Tony before it inevitably crashes. (Law of youthful superhero and mentor with shadier colors.) With Bruce missing, Peter is the ideal person to be a science nephew.

(no subject)

Date: 2016-05-01 12:33 pm (UTC)
selenak: (Henry Hellrung by Imaginary Alice)
From: [personal profile] selenak
I facepalmed at Steve's 'but what if we can't go somewhere that we're needed?!' because I'm pretty sure the people of Nigeria would rather that the Avengers had fought Crossbones somewhere other than downtown Lagos.

In all fairness, I just rewatched Age of Ultron, and the Avengers really go out of their way to evacuate civilians in all the fight sequences (that's one thing I've always liked about the Marvel movies, looking at you, DC), so Steve probably thought: what could a comittee have told us to do that would have made a difference? And usually the fighting ground is chosen by the villain. But the thing is, there's still a big difference if, say, an elected representative of Nigeria has okayed the Avengers operating in Lagos in an emergency or whether they do it without bothering with input from the people actually living there first.

Speaking of AoU, the Whedonian audio commentary has reminded me he actually sneakily made the Marvelverse and the Buffyverse one. (By giving the Wolf, the Ram and the Hart a cameo in Thor's vision.) I like your Board of Directors idea and would therefore suggest Rupert Giles as another candidate, for all the obvious reasons. (He may or may not come with Andrew Wells promoting himself to Giles' personal assistant, once he hears about the new gig.)

Honestly, I doubt Bucky will get defrosted for Infinity War, because frosting him in the first place looked to me like a move to slim down the cast. Considering Infinity War has a) to establish Thanos as the main antagonist as a character (not one talked about, but one actually on screen), and b) add at least some of the Guardians of the Galaxy crowd, and c) ast least some of the Asgardians from Thor in addition to Thor himself, I'm not sure how many Avengers can even be there. Wanda and Vision, obviously. Steve and Tony because they need to make up on screen. Bruce because he's been sitting out this one, and a Thor cameo isn't going to cut it. But I wouldn't be surprised if Clint, Sam and Rhodey (for obvious reasons) are all not included, and not sure whether Natasha will be. Carol with her abilities might be better suited? (If they are the same in the MCU.)

And hey, at least he's a less shady Science Uncle than Norman Osborne ...

Not a high standard, granted (reminds me of Roslin going "at least I'm still better than Gaius Baltar" in her vision talk with Elosha), but there it is. Also, Tony, even currently burdened with angst, is more fun to hang out with than Norman in any incarnation. And less likely to kill/impregnate Peter's first love.


andraste: The reason half the internet imagines me as Patrick Stewart. (Default)

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