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  1. #21
    Senior Member Survive & Stay Free's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    Yeah. That must be it.

    Give it another 20 years and what will happen is that things will swing back the other way. What you constantly seem to read as politicized message is most likely the typical back-and-forth swing of the pendulum used by writers to keep things interesting. For much of the first few decades of the comic industry, heroes were bland, foppy, good-natured boy scouts; now for about 20-30 years, things have gotten dark starting with the most likely candidates (of which Batman was one); when people get bored with that, it'll swing back. Heroes reflect what people need at the time; that's actually a line in The Dark Knight, ironically.

    ...Don't worry yourself too much, the world will be okay.
    Why do you suppose that I'm worried, the reality is that literary and social criticism has become the home of a lot of dispossessed marxists or "critical" theorists and they've had a real trip taking apart a lot of the Golden Age of Comics, Batman is one of their absolute favourites, a millionaire play boy whose unresolved trauma has led to him dressing up to inspire terror and beating on the urban poor, ignoring structural causes for crime and by his efforts generating or attracting even more bizarre psychopaths to his home town.

    I'm not making that up, Neil Gaimen even reflected it in his graphic novel Whatever Happened To The Dark Knight? Which was kind of a response or reflection of Alan Moore's Whatever Happened To The Man of Tommorrow? A more sensitive treatment of Superman but each book dealing with a Last Issue or The End of The Series Issue.

    Some commentators see this as the comics or their readership or writers "growing up" or "progress" but I reject that completely, I dont see how trashing something in the course of a supposed "critical evaluation" is producing anything of any worth, another example is Judge Dredd, he started out as an authoritarian but sympathetic character, perhaps like Dirty Harry or John Cobra or movie cops of the eighties, but with publication of story lines like Amerika became just a fascist who it was only possible to incidentially or involuntarily sympathise when they faced off against greater, meaner, eviler odds, like Death, demons or mutants.

    The Punisher is one of my personal favourite characters and he evolved rapidly from a character who it was possible to sympathise with to one it was only really possible to appreciate as a real anti-hero (although I think something similar happened with the Death Wish franchise) and much of the time not even as that. He's often contrasted with Dare Devil, there was more than one storyline comparing the characters, as the evil conterposed to the good. His first incarnation was a veteran war hero who was avenging his family's murder. Writers and artists even went back to his time in 'Nam and depicted him as psychopathic back then and psychopathic all along rather than heroic.

    V for Vendetta and The Watchmen where in their own ways both major critical responses to superheroes as a genre altogether, even more apparent in the comics than the film adaptations but still pretty obvious even then.

    There's without question a trend there, I very much doubt its a matter of any swing back and forth in taste, its not something so simple as a new "dark" side of the character being shown in response to the "foppy, boy scout" persona, Tim Burton's Batman was dark, the original Batman was dark, in one of his first scripts he abandons a mad scientist to burn in a house fire and he even weilded guns and shot criminals.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    I thought it was pretty amazing too. I hadn't quite seen something like it before, and it was coupled with the script/characterization twist of the Joker being amoral rather than immoral... he's just out to gum up the status quo and even out the playing field.

    It took a lot of guts to dive into the character that deep and breathe and live it.
    He didn't win acclaim just because he happened to die; his portrayal sticks to you.
    Quote Originally Posted by MacGuffin View Post
    I agree, Heath Ledger's Joker was one of the greatest movie villians of all-time.

    This is coming from someone that worships Darth Vader.
    It was definitely one of the most memorable performances I've ever seen. The character was so well-crafted that if I didn't already know beforehand who the actor was behind the makeup and diabolical mannerisms, I never would've guessed it was Heath Ledger.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lark View Post
    Why do you suppose that I'm worried, the reality is that literary and social criticism has become the home of a lot of dispossessed marxists or "critical" theorists and they've had a real trip taking apart a lot of the Golden Age of Comics, Batman is one of their absolute favourites, a millionaire play boy whose unresolved trauma has led to him dressing up to inspire terror and beating on the urban poor, ignoring structural causes for crime and by his efforts generating or attracting even more bizarre psychopaths to his home town.

    ....Some commentators see this as the comics or their readership or writers "growing up" or "progress" but I reject that completely, I dont see how trashing something in the course of a supposed "critical evaluation" is producing anything of any worth, another example is Judge Dredd, he started out as an authoritarian but sympathetic character, perhaps like Dirty Harry or John Cobra or movie cops of the eighties, but with publication of story lines like Amerika became just a fascist who it was only possible to incidentially or involuntarily sympathise when they faced off against greater, meaner, eviler odds, like Death, demons or mutants.
    I'm a little confused as to how we're talking the Dark Knight movie, where I found the character more complex rather than such a general caricature as you seem to be describing him. Aside from the stupid voice in the movie, I simply don't see the character in this movie as fitting what you're saying. And the best Batman comics simply treat him differently; meanwhile, there will always be crappy writers who only deal in cliches, rather than it having the level of negative significance that you seem to be crediting it here.

    The comic/serial medium itself is also damned to reduce itself to blandness because of its never-ending nature; there is simply an endless cycle of reinterpreting the characters based on whatever the current creative staff feels like trying; and once you get a new staff, things change yet again. So the characters themselves are just devices being used by the staff to create stories they themselves find interesting, there is no long-term consistency of character, there will be change after change depending on the writer, and writers are products of (or reactions against) their times.

    The Punisher is one of my personal favourite characters and he evolved rapidly from a character who it was possible to sympathise with to one it was only really possible to appreciate as a real anti-hero (although I think something similar happened with the Death Wish franchise) and much of the time not even as that. He's often contrasted with Dare Devil, there was more than one storyline comparing the characters, as the evil conterposed to the good. His first incarnation was a veteran war hero who was avenging his family's murder. Writers and artists even went back to his time in 'Nam and depicted him as psychopathic back then and psychopathic all along rather than heroic.
    I'm aware of all the characters you've mentioned here (except maybe John Cobra). Again, I see this as poor writing, rather than the writer making some philosophical statement or trying to tear down a "hero" of sorts. They're simply unimaginative. Eventually when it gets boring to do so and it all becomes "same-old" and indistinguishable, the positive spins will start appearing again. We've already seen it with the Captain America movie from this past summer. The negative excesses, once they become an indistinguishable blur and have no power to generate capital or interest, will diminish some as people try new approaches to old characters.

    V for Vendetta and The Watchmen where in their own ways both major critical responses to superheroes as a genre altogether, even more apparent in the comics than the film adaptations but still pretty obvious even then.
    I couldn't stand either movie, but the books themselves (both by Moore) are excellent, and quite nuanced in their treatment. It always seems to happen, when it comes to popularizing this type of literature into cinema, for the movie to focus on the glossy, external elements of the characters and miss all the underlying complexity that made it good in the first place.

    There's without question a trend there, I very much doubt its a matter of any swing back and forth in taste, its not something so simple as a new "dark" side of the character being shown in response to the "foppy, boy scout" persona, Tim Burton's Batman was dark, the original Batman was dark, in one of his first scripts he abandons a mad scientist to burn in a house fire and he even weilded guns and shot criminals.
    Well, I've explicated what I meant above in more detail. There are various influences at work, rather than the typical alarmist vibe you seem to project in your posts. Sometimes things are just what they are, and are simply a matter of fluctuating diversity, rather than having any secret meaning behind them, regardless of who you happen to quote along the way.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  4. #24
    Senior Member TenebrousReflection's Avatar
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    I enjoyed the previous two movies and I normally enjoy any superhero movies, but this trailer does not inspire me to go see this one in the theatre.
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  5. #25
    Senior Member tinker683's Avatar
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    MMhmmm....Anne Hatheway....

    ....

    ....

    OH

    And the movie looks like it's going to be awesome too
    "The man who is swimming against the stream knows the strength of it."
    ― Woodrow Wilson

  6. #26
    Senior Member swordpath's Avatar
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    Can. Not. Wait.

  7. #27
    Senior Member KDude's Avatar
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    Damn, Anne Hatheway looks hot in this. I never paid much attention to her before.

  8. #28
    Senior Member Mal12345's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Ü View Post
    I agree with this assessment right here.

    The highlight was Heinz Field imploding. Not because I'm a Browns fan or that I give a shit about football, but Steelers fans are some of the most annoying sports fans. And sports fans are already highly annoying.

    I loved Batman Begins but The Dark Knight was lukewarm at best. Hell, Heath Ledger's acclaimed performance was only acclaimed because he died. No one would've remembered it if he was still alive.
    Interesting, I have just this very morning read a critic's review of Dark Knight in which the reviewer stated the exact opposite about Heath Ledger.
    "Everyone has a plan till they get punched in the mouth." Mike Tyson
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  9. #29
    Senior Member KDude's Avatar
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    I would've definitely remembered it. It wasn't like other Jokers I've seen exactly.. usually the cackling variety. The first thought that came to my mind is that his voice sounded like Ed Sullivan. Which is memorable in itself. I thought it was a weird choice, but it worked.

    "The U" is just trying to be contrarian, just for the sake of it. It's a young INJ thing, I think.

  10. #30
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    I don't know how Jack Nicholson got to be remembered as a great Joker.

    I thought he kinda sucked, and I'm old enough to have seen it in the theater.

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