OK, back onto the regular monthly posts after last month’s double bill. From this month on expect a wide variety of films- you may find me discussing Hitchcock or Welles one moment, then back onto the 80’s trash cult films. This is because I’ve started studying film at university so naturally will have to be watching “proper” cinema along with the stuff I usually throw into these articles. Luckily, today saw my first lecture and film screening so we’re getting some much needed variety for September. But first, the usual nonsense-
Ah, Stephen King. The name conjures up killer clowns, haunted hotels and possessed cars. For over forty years his name has been synonymous with scares, thrills and genius. King is perhaps the most famous author living today and even if you’ve never read a single book of his you surely know of his reputation, or seen a film based on one of his many stories in his gigantic bibliography.
Thanks to the power of animation and modern technology, many of the Doctor Who stories lost in the 60’s have been restored. Particularly badly hit is Patrick Troughton’s Second Doctor, a fan favourite and beloved by many but unfortunately still relatively underserved in the complete story front. Only seven stories (a third of his total) are complete and whilst stories like The Ice Warriors, The Moonbase and The Invasion are thankfully mostly around they are filled in with recreations or animation. It’s the latter format which 2Entertain has chosen to give the completely lost Troughton stories new life. His debut The Power of the Daleks was animated in 2016 and up next is The Macra Terror, a somewhat obscure but influential story from his first season. If the name “Macra” sounds familiar, it’s because they’re the big crab things from Series 3’s Gridlock. This is their debut however and it’s a fantastic dystopian narrative brought to life with fantastic animation that honours the style of the 60’s whilst updating it to a new audience.
Sooo, I’m an idiot and accidentally published the Stranger Things 3 review literally a day after my Spider-Man one so we got two reviews in a row. Well, it’s been a over a week since the last review so it’s once again time to dive into my totally-not-messed-up-at-this-point Month of Reviews and take a look at the Good Omens mini-series that debuted on Amazon Prime earlier this year. Based on the novel by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett, the mini-series has been making waves due to its fun story, unique mythology and amazing dynamic between series leads David Tennant and Michael Sheen. As a huge fan of Gaiman’s work and as someone who wants to get into Pratchett, this series was a must watch for me. That plus the “Doctor Who effect*” was put into effect and I just had to check this out. Not only is Good Omens hilarious and unique, it’s also intelligent and ingeniously written in its perfectly paced six episodes.
Ben’s Month of Reviews continues with one of my most anticipated events of the year- the arrival of a new season of Stranger Things. Yes, I was late to the hype train (I began watching April last year to be precise) but I love this show. It made David Harbour into one of my all time favourite actors, got me on my current Stephen King reading binge (his novels, particularly It and Firestarter, are huge influences on the show) and finally pursuaded me get a Netflix account that introduced me to other shows I love such as Brooklyn Nine-Nine and Castlevania and has greatly helped me with the amount of films I watch. It also really really made me want to live in the 80’s to the extent I have now seen more 80’s films that is humanly possible, including many with the veteran Stranger Things actors such as Winona Ryder, Sean Astin and Cary Elwes. If you’re wondering why my monthly film lists consist of so many odd 80’s films and kid’s films such as The Goonies, blame Stranger Things. So yeah, this little show about a group of kids in the world’s unluckiest town has made quite a big impact on me. Not since Doctor Who had I become so obsessed with a show so quickly. For comparison, it took me a couple of episodes to get passionate about Firefly and roughly half a season to “get” Rick and Morty. With Stranger Things, it only took the gorgeous opening synth titles. No one agrees with me, but I thought Stranger Things 2 was the better season- the first was iconic yes, but Season 2 had the best Hopper writing, Dad Steve and Sean Astin. I spent last Thursday binging the entirety of Season 3 and because everyone’s seen it let’s go full spoilers here. Although if you still haven’t seen it yet, in brief- it’s good. Very very good. With that said, let’s dive into Hawkins with all the juicy details-
July will be Ben’s Month of Reviews. Whilst I am currently on holiday (in York en route to Edinburgh to be precise), thanks to the magic of the Internet I am still able to write a whole bunch of reviews for recent fandom properties I’ve seen recently. First up, the latest Marvel Cinematic Universe film, Spider-Man: Far From Home, the second solo Tom Holland film and a film that features the big screen debut of one of Marvel’s coolest villains, Mysterio. How does it stack up? One of the best sequel’s Marvel’s ever done.
At last, summer is here. I’ve spent most of this month relishing in the freedom I now have following my exams, which means a lot of films were burnt through. This is in part to make up for next month, which will be lacking in the film front due to my long holiday coming up. With that said, how did I mark the halfway point of the year? Let’s find out.
It took me a bit longer to read through the latest Skulduggery Pleasant instalment, not the fault of the book itself but due to my exams. Now that they’ve been over and done with, I can finally discuss the brilliant twelfth instalment of the Skulduggery Pleasant saga. Oh boy, what a book this is. At nearly 600 pages this is an epic book and not a word is wasted. Derek Landy crams so much in this book it is quite an achievement. Without further ado, let’s dive into this beast-
The Dark Knight has been around for over 80 years and many great actors have worn the cape and cowl. Today saw a new Batman potentially be announced- Robert Pattinson. Whilst the Internet has of course been moaning and whinging, a look back at all the main actors to don the mantle proves that left field, unconventional choices often result in great results. Nobody thought Heath Ledger could play a good Joker. Nobody thought an unknown Australian could become Wolverine. No one thought Beetlejuice could be Batman. But the fan community has been proven wrong time and time again and just because Robert Pattinson was in that franchise doesn’t mean he doesn’t deserve a shot at DC. I haven’t seen anything he’s in outside of Goblet of Fire (you will never, ever, ever catch me watching one of those films. Ever) but a brief look at his filmography proves his capability as an actor. If he gets the role, I’ll be up for it. As long as the writing is strong I know we’ll get a great Batman. With that said, let’s look at the other iterations of Batman, in an article I have been waiting ages to write. For this article, I’m only going to discuss the six “main” actors who have played Batman. These are actors who have either played the Caped Crusader in multiple films or have been linked to the franchise in other ways through television or video games. With this criteria, I count six, soon to be seven actors who are considered to be the “primary” Batmen. Let’s start with the legendary-