Best and Worst Villains in a Comic Book Movie?

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by The Overlord, Feb 14, 2012.

  1. the G-man

    the G-man Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    But as long as he's running around in a cape and metal mask you're going to get that possibility. So just embrace it.

    No, more likely, it was a combination of a bad director, a small budget and Julian's vanity against playing someone where you couldn't see his 'pretty face'
     
  2. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Premium Member

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    There might have also been some desire to emulate the first Spider-Man movie. The Doom in the FF movie is more Norman Osborne than Victor Von Doom, right down to targeting his business rivals . . . .
     
  3. Captaindemotion

    Captaindemotion Vice Admiral Admiral

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    ^ Yeah, that's what I thought too.

    I also doubt that McMahon, who was hardly a box-office draw, had sufficient clout to determine how much face time his character got. At one stage Tim Robbins was linked with the role of DD. Fair enough, someone as well known as him might have got to veto the mask, but it's unlikely that a primarily tv actor like McMahon could do so. He needed the role more than it needed him.
     
  4. Ian Keldon

    Ian Keldon Fleet Captain

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    His killing Magneto's mother has nothing to do with his founding of the Hellfire Club. They're separate events.

    They didn't "disappear". Prof X was keeping him from using them.
     
  5. Ian Keldon

    Ian Keldon Fleet Captain

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    Is not a supervillain in a comic-book based movie.
     
  6. Captaindemotion

    Captaindemotion Vice Admiral Admiral

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    ^ I'm fairly sure thatThe G-Man knew that; I suspect that he was trying to point out that audiences were willing to accept a villain with that sort of look.
     
  7. Ian Keldon

    Ian Keldon Fleet Captain

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    not a comic book movie supervillain

    both pulled back quite a bit from their comic book versions

    was pushing the limit. He gets some leeway because it's a Superman movie.

    Also that was 30+ years ago, and not relevant to the modern crop of superhero movies.

    Lots of people thought otherwise. Many of the complaints centered to one degree or anther around the idea of it being "too out there" and "too cartoony" [read "comic book"]).

    neither of them comic book superhero movies. Also, look how much they pulled the style of the HP movies back from the content of the books to make it more "real" and acceptable to the audience.

    All not comic book superhero films.

    Spidey is generally low key to begin with.

    That's an admission at least.

    And was presented in a low-key, "realistic" manner. The Navi are basically stand ins for Native Americans. Their physical appearance aside, their culture looks Native American, acts Native American, etc.

    Not as flamboyant as the versions presented in the comics.

    The studios don't seem to think so...else we would have had Shakespearean Asgardians in Thor, etc.
     
  8. Ian Keldon

    Ian Keldon Fleet Captain

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    They DID embrace it in F4 2 and it didn't help them a bit. The film STILL underperformed according to the studio, which is why they're rebooting despite the excellence of most of the rest of the film.

    Of course F4 2 also got saddled with Galactus, which was NEVER going to go over well with LA movie audiences, whether as a cloud critter OR as a giant pink and purple armored man with square horns on his helmet.
     
  9. Captaindemotion

    Captaindemotion Vice Admiral Admiral

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    ^ Why do you keep referring to 'LA Movie audiences?' Does the rest of the world not have any impact on box-office take?
     
  10. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Premium Member

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    Exactly. Movie audiences don't always insist that science fiction and superheroes be "more real." That's just one approach. Heck, nobody seemed to mind that the climax of THOR featured a thunder god flying up to a rainbow bridge--or that the villains were a sorcerous Norse god and a bunch of Frost Giants.

    If Loki (and the Red Skull) worked, why not the real Dr. Doom?

    Ian: Just saw your post. To be honest, I'm not sure exactly what you mean by "low-key" or "more real." The Green Goblin, Doctor Octopus, the Harry Potter movies, and Thor all seem pretty out there to me. Sure, they toned down Stan Lee's mock-Elizabethan dialogue a little bit, but it's not like Loki was now a corrupt business tycoon or mob boss trying to take over the drug trade, or a crooked politician out to fix an election. You still had Asgardian gods, in colorful Kirby-esque costumes, fighting black magic, a giant robot, and Frost giants to save the mystical realm of Asgard.

    Likewise, Doctor Octopus is still a mad scientist climbing around on buildings with his berserk robot arms. And the Green Goblin is flying around on a winged scooter wearing a bright green fright mask. If that's "more real" than the comics version, it's a pretty fine distinction. Nobody would mistake any of that for realism.

    More importantly, I'm not sure why superhero films should be subject to different rules than any other sf/fantasy blockbuster. I mean, Harry Potter is still about magical kids attending a school for wizards, complete with elves, gryffins, and all manner of fantastic creatures, and nobody complains that they need to be "more real."

    Why should people expect superhero movies (of all things!) to be more "realistic" than Star Wars or Transformers? Because comic books are known for their gritty contemporary realism?
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2012
  11. stj

    stj Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Not when Shaw is trying to recruit him to the Hellfire Club.
    The attempt to get friendly with a man whose mother you killed more or less on a whim was just grotesquely stupid.

    Yes, there is dialogue that would suggest that. But, fighting off a coin being shoved through your brain is more like a reflex than conscious use. Xavier suppressing Shaw's power at this point is more like keeping a drowning victim from trying to breathe. Worst than that, it's absurd to think that Xavier is in mental contact with Shaw and doesn't know what's happening. And if he knew what was happening but suppressed Shaw's power even in such desperate straits, then Xavier was just as much Shaw's killer as Magneto. Yet, plainly neither Magneto nor Xavier believe Xavier assisted in the kill. Ergo, Shaw's power just disappeared.

    If it's any consolation, you are correct about Dr. Doom in the first Fantastic Four movie. Having Dr. Doom be a sorceror-scientist who happens to be jealous of his college friend whom he also blames for his failure to restore his mother to life by necromancy and his hideous scarring who seizes an entire postage stamp kingdom and achieves tremendous scientific power but foolishly neglects to kill his dearest enemy until said enemy accidentally gains superpowers, along with enough friends to keep said sorceror-scientist from every triumphing, and indeed, merely foolishly tagging along as best frenemy, eventually to be called Uncle Doom:wtf: This would have been hard to fit into any movie, live action, comic book or original fantasy. Dr. Doom's origin and fixation on the Fantastic Four is a bloody mess, and the movie can't be faulted for not making a silk purse out of a sow's ear.
     
  12. Shazam!

    Shazam! Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re. Green Lantern... The majority of the complaints said the opposite ie. too much Earth stuff and melodrama.
     
  13. Shazam!

    Shazam! Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Oh. You're trolling. There was nothing in either of the Fantastic Four movies that was anywhere close to 'excellent.'
     
  14. scnj

    scnj Captain Captain

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    LA in this case means live action I think.
     
  15. Shazam!

    Shazam! Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Presumably inserted as a caveat to counter any "but what about The Incredibles!" argument.
     
  16. flandry84

    flandry84 Captain Captain

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    Worst portrayal of a supervillain in a movie....
    Does the avatar tell you anything?
     
  17. the G-man

    the G-man Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Precisely. Presactly, even.

    And, for the record, when SW first came out, a lot was made of it being a homage to Flash Gordon, Buck Rogers and other comic strip sci-fi heroes.

    But I suppose Ian will now explain to us how comic strips and comic books are nothing, nothing, alike and that "L[ive] A[ction]" audiences won't tolerate in a comic book movie what they'd tolerate in a comic strip one.

    I guess Norse Gods of Evil and disfigured Nazi super-scientists with cosmic cubes are just "low key," dammit.


    I don't want to put words in Ian's mouth here but I suspect he's one of "those fans," who thinks that--just because Chris Nolan's gritty take works on a down to earth character on Batman--audiences want all their superhero movies to be "realistic."
     
  18. Set Harth

    Set Harth Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Well, one of those is. :p
     
  19. stj

    stj Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I'm reading Ian Keldon's notion as being more about the motivation of the villains being less just "that's what comic book villains do," not so much about about realism as such. There seems to be agreement that some villains are cool, while others aren't. But the esthetic standard of coolness is not one notable for taste, consistency, empathy for humanity, understanding of society or much anything rational. Talking about coolness in practice usually means "Agree with me or shut up!" Most of the modern comic book villains do seem to pull back on the comic book elements, lest they go over the top. Or worse, seem geeky.
     
  20. the G-man

    the G-man Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    The proper way to work Doom into a movie would have been to have him established at the beginning of the film as the leader of the 'rogue' nation of Latveria whose threats against the free world are the impetus for Reed and company getting powers in the first place.

    Like Vader, don't worry about a lengthy origin sequence in the initial film, just set up that Doom was a brilliant scientist/dictator who tampered with forces beyond his ken in a quest for ultimate power and was now hideously scarred. And now, he's convinced he's got it right and is going try again--only with the whole world at stake.

    Doom's plan involves piercing dimensions and powering his invention with a new form of cosmic energy believed to exist only in a place called "the negative zone." So far he hasn't gotten there but it's only a matter of time. And the US and its allies know it.

    Government scientist Reed Richards is the scientist tasked with stopping Doom. Reed is certainly up to the assignment. Besides being one of the most brilliant men on earth, he’s almost as familiar with Doom’s theories as Doom himself. And he’s practically obsessed with stopping Doom.

    Reed has theorized that—if he can tap a small amount of the negative zone energy first—he can create a device (which he nicknamed the ultimate nullifier) that would not only prevent Doom from powering his own device but could--if safely harnessed--lead to an end to the energy crisis.

    Unlike Doom who wants to open the portal haphazardly and essentially bring the negative zone to earth, Reed is trying to build a vessel (kind of like an interdimensional submarine) that can take a small crew and instruments over there to study and tap into the energy before it reaches earth.

    Assisting Reed in his experiments are a team of scientists including his girlfriend Sue Storm and her brother, Johnny (a grad student, very bright, but a hothead who’d rather be designing race cars and chasing pretty girls like his hero, Tony Stark). They are guarded by Ben Grimm, a former fighter pilot who’s become Reed’s best friend.

    The team is working day and night to set up the vessel but time is running out. News is coming out every day from their intelligence sources that Doom is getting closer and Reed is getting more and more obsessed with stopping him.

    And then, the news they dreaded: Victor is further along that they feared. They’ve got no choice but to try and make the trip in the prototype before the shields are fully tested...and we all know what happens then.

    Once the quartet gets back to earth, establish the team of superheroes along the usual FF lines and then, when the time is right, send them out to stop Doom, since Latveria is too fortified for anyone but them to get inside at this point.

    And now, the big reveal: Years ago, Doom and Reed once colleagues. Reed--as a young scientist--had assisted Doom in early (successful) experiments but backed away from Doom well before the incident that caused the scarring when he realized that Victor was up to no good. The group now realizes why he’s obsessed with Victor.

    (Doom, for his part, doesn’t give a fig about Reed at this point. Reed’s basically a lesser scientist who—in Doom’s mind—couldn’t even shield an experiment properly [completely oblivious to them being two sides of the same coin in that regard])

    The movie ends with the customary action scenes and Doom defeated, vowing vengeance against Richards and the FF for stopping him.
     

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