Attention FanGirls/Boys

Editor’s Note: If this comes off super bitchy, it’s because I’m sick and I’m missing a good friend’s wedding that I really wanted to go to so you’ve been warned.

Channing Tatum has confirmed that he will be playing Gambit and is actively working on the film. It’s been pretty common knowledge for awhile that he’ll be the Ragin’ Cajun but it’s nice to have the confirmation the project is going forward as planned. I personally think he’ll do a great job because he’s been working with an acting coach and has been actively courting to get this role for awhile. He’s a fan and I think he’ll stay true to the character. He’s not a bad actor and if you’ve seen his films, he’s not just a big, dumb jocky eye candy piece. Besides Wolverine, Remy LeBeau (aka Gambit) is probably one of my favorite X-Men and I think the whole X-Man franchise can provide us with so many excellent movies/stories for many years to come. I think I know X-Men better than I know some members of my family, most days; but, in my defense, if my family members popped adamantium claws or threw kinetically charged cards, I’d probably pay more attention (kidding, family – I love y’all). Much like the news of Jasmine being cast in the live-action Aladdin remake, and pretty much every damn movie about a character/franchise/story adopted from other media/mediums, the people flocked to the internet and bitched.

 

If anyone has absolutely accurately portrayed the internet/movie buffs bitching about films, it’s Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back with Ben Affleck, Jason Mewes, and Kevin Smith. I might not like all of Smith’s work but I’ve always been a fan of his generally speaking – he makes me laugh and I think people sorely need that more than ever these days. If you ever get a chance, check out Dogma – it’s one of my favorites of his. He once called me a “timid little Kentuckian” when I was too afraid to ask him a question at a Q&A at Memorial Colosseum in Lexington, Kentucky circa 2002/3. I got my question out eventually but, damn, I was fan-girl nervous (and a teenager, which I feel to be a debilitating disease in most kids that can only be surmounted with time). Check this out and then read some more from me, if you dare; Kevin Smith, unlike the following clip, was dead wrong – I am anything but timid (and be careful with little ones around because there is a LOT of potty language in this clip – you’ve been warned). 

When will people wait to actually eat the food before they say the whole resturaunt is garbage? I’ve used this analogy before when it comes to movies. A wait staff are like the actors, the cook and staff the director and team, the manager/owner operator are the producers and movie studio and the hostess (often the most shit-upon in the industry) is the lowly production assistant. It’s a simple analogy to come up with so I wouldn’t give myself any points on creativity here, but the simplest things are often the truest. When you sit down at a restaurant, each individual and their level of commitment contributes their specific part to the experience. When you get your food and it’s cold, that could be the fault of the wait staff or the cook. If it tastes bad, it’s on the cook. If the ingredients aren’t fresh, it’s probably the cook and the supply person (usually the manager). If you have one bad thing at a restaurant, yes, it can ruin a whole meal but if the waiter brings you a food item that sucks because it tastes bad, yelling at the waiter isn’t really going to get to any solution…unless you’re just a douche and like to yell at people making $2.50 an hour plus tips. If that’s the case, you can go ahead and leave because, as Daniel Tosh says, your ranch isn’t that fucking important. 

The analogy highlights an overall fact: a restaurant, like a movie, is a team effort so every time a cast is announced for a movie and the internet responds in kind with “man, this is going to suck because ______ is in it” or “because ______ is directing”, they’re really missing a lot of key elements that go into a production. One having an opinion and saying “based upon their previous work, I don’t know how well they will be able to excute this but we’ll see” means one has an actual opinion and that’s okay; one is saying saying that based upon solid evidence they’re a little skeptical but willing to keep an open mind. But, to the rest, every single damn time a new cast, etc. is announced, the backlash has become almost like an inevitable dog and pony show of bitching. Heath Ledger as Joker? People bitched and guess what? He nailed it and got awards (post-humously, which I still consider to be a great travesty to the art world, may he Rest In Peace). Hugh Jackman as Wolverine (“oh my God he’s too tall and has been in musical theater! This movie is going to blow goats!”) – I’m not going to dignify that because I think we can all just assume at this point I’m going to say he’s the best Wolverine that has ever been or ever will be in movies. That’s not just my opinion – that’s stone cold fact so make your peace with it. Ben Affleck as Batman? Say what you want, but I really think he did a good job and I absolutely loathed Batman vs. Superman (after I saw it). Honestly, in that case, I think the story was shit (the writers craft the menu in the restaurant analogy – can you can tell how much fun I had coming up with this?). The list goes on and on for about every damn movie ever made. Sometimes people are correct in their assumptions but, as the saying goes, “even a broken clock is right twice a day”…or they’re just that intuitive and astute when it comes to their opinions because they probably have facts to back up their statements, which would set them apart from the idiots. 

This seems to be most prevalent in “geek culture” because were vehement about how well our favorite heroes are portrayed on film and the like. We get antsy every time the casting list comes out and take to social media to air our grievances because we’re emotionally invested. Fair enough, to a certain extent…but at what point does it become too ridiculous? At what point do we all collectively say, “Hey, these people are making movies for us. Yes, they make money from it but if they create a shitty product, then people won’t buy it.” This is where movie reviewers have a unique niche because they can provide a wealth of insight into whether or not a film is true to the framework of the character or story being told (especially historical biopics, which I get really nit-picky about if they’re not accurate). Granted, it’s one person’s opinion but since it’s their job and if they’re generally right, they can make a name for themselves much like Siskel and Ebert on what’s hot or not. It’s a responsibility on movie/music/etc. reviewers not to screw that up. So a reviewer reviews and then you take that opinion and you weigh it against what you deem important in your cinematic or otherwise entertainment-absorbing preferences and you make a decision upon what you want to spend your time. Simple, no?

But back to the geeks and nerds and dorks – friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears (or eyes, whatever): STOP BEING ASSHOLES OR THEY WILL STOP MAKING MOVIES FOR US. If they don’t feel they have an audience because people shit-can their professional choices before the ink dries on the script, they won’t invest the time or money into making it good (if at all). If they phone it in, like any restaurant that isn’t consistently on its game, it will lose customers and close. 

This is a shirt from teeturtle.com that I own and wear proudly

Oh and while we’re on the subject? The book will always be better. Always. Want to know why that is? It’s not because every franchise crafted from a book sucks (Harry Potter, Hunger Games, and Divergent were all good), but because books will always have the edge of being able to paint a larger and more detailed picture in one tome as opposed to a movie with a finite amount of time to get the story across. Sometimes both book and movie are bad (I’m looking at you Twilight and your offshoot bastard lovechild of an orgy, 50 Shades of Grey). Some characters will be left out, some dialogue will be skipped, and no matter how much you personally think that one line of dialogue was just absolutely crucial to the plot, it just didn’t make the cut. Soak up the tears with the pages of a book and maybe, when you’re done mopping the saline expelling from your whiny eyes, read the damn thing to get the full story. I might start hyperventilating with the physical exertion expended with my typing when I stress how important it is to READ FRIGGIN BOOKS. READ, DAMN YOU. 


Basically, this is one team/one fight for entertainment and good art. Stop being armchair psychics/psychos and start a productive dialogue if you want to affect real change.

7 thoughts on “Attention FanGirls/Boys

  1. Nerds can complain all they want. At no point will movie studios stop making comic book movies until the well is completely tapped. This is because the movies aren’t for nerds. They’re for Susan, that bitch, who’s taking little Gunner who loves the Hulk to see it. Susan doesn’t know two bits about the Hulk besides he’s green and strong. She doesn’t care who is cast in the role, outside of certain factors.

    Movies stop being made when they don’t make money. We didn’t get a sequel to Superman Returns because comic nerds panned it. We didn’t get a sequel because it barely made any money. F4ntastic didn’t get a sequel because it barely made any money. Batman Forever got a sequel, but Batman & Robin did not for a good reason.

    TL;DR – Let them bitch. They have zero effect on getting more movies.

    PS: Heath Ledger sucked as the Joker and Jared Leto was far superior.
    PPS: ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Okay, granted they won’t stop altogether (kind of hyperbolic on my part but I’m matching hyperbole with hyperbole) but less work and artistry will go into it. I’d be less inclined to work hard if people are going to be assholes about my livelihood ahead of time. Generally I’ll try to shove it back in their faces by kicking ass but after years of it, I’d say the creators get kind of beaten down. Art is subjective and not every one is going to like everything but the bitching is annoying. That being said, you suck…Ledger was gold…but at least you actually have an opinion based upon comparison and not blind dart throwing. Also, I hate you. And love you. It’s been very confusing for me emotionally reading your comment…

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  2. Oh, I also forgot to say:

    One other reason the book is better is that we’re able to craft our own image of the world. This is part of why fans get upset when something is changed going to movie/TV. The things they remember aren’t being represented. See: My opinion on Heath Ledger as the Joker.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This is a great blog post, Caitlin, and I couldn’t agree more about the majority of it. There is soooo much complaining when it comes to fandom and I’m not going to lie and say I haven’t done so in the past. Casting is a big draw to a project and while I don’t like Channing Tatum at all, I won’t let that color my judgment. When the trailer for Gambit comes out, I will definitely check it out. I will base whether or not I actually want to go to the theater on the trailer and what the writers/director(s) bring to the project.

    Other than that, I have two things to say. First of all, your “the book was better” t-shirt frakkin rocks and I want one. Secondly, all of that Jay and Silent Bob stuff has me thinking, “Affleck, you da bomb in Phantoms, yo!”

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  4. This is a great blog post, Caitlin, and I couldn’t agree more about the majority of it. There is soooo much complaining when it comes to fandom and I’m not going to lie and say I haven’t done so in the past. Casting is a big draw to a project and while I don’t like Channing Tatum at all, I won’t let that color my judgment. When the trailer for Gambit comes out, I will definitely check it out. I will base whether or not I actually want to go to the theater on the trailer and what the writers/director(s) bring to the project.

    Other than that, I have two things to say. First of all, your “the book was better” t-shirt frakkin rocks and I want one. Secondly, all of that Jay and Silent Bob stuff has me thinking, “Affleck, you da bomb in Phantoms, yo!”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for your kind words! And I agree – it’s something I’ve done before and when I had to eat some humble pie more than once, I realized how futile it was to complain about something I had no reason to complain about. Tatum isn’t everyone’s cup of tea and that’s cool – you’re going into it with an open mind!
      And if you want that awesome shirt, check out teeturtle.com – they have some awesome ones!

      Like

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