Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Amazing Spider-Man: Twilight In Spandex

Welp, the reviews are in. Well, okay, just one review. Said review, if you're too lazy to read, favorably compares the new Spider-Man flick to the Twilight series. If you aren't already pulling out your hair, let me tell you why that's bad news.

Let's look at the facts, Twilight was a terrible movie series, with terrible people that enjoyed it. Really, I don't think anyone has a dissenting opinion on that fact. It was a shallow, pandering series for preteens that showcased a "romance" nobody cared about. I don't need to get into all the reasons, some people have internet careers discussing why Twilight is so bad. The problem isn't that it's bad, it's that apparently it was popular enough that other producers/directors feel the need to appeal to the "Twilight Generation" in other movies. And that's terrible.

Particularly when any production team sets their sights to pander to a certain demographic, things aren't going to be good. Pander to comic fans, and the movie seems too dense and newcomers aren't interested. Looking at Spider-Man 3, it attempted to pander to far too many people at the same time, becoming so coagulated with shit that it collapsed in upon itself. However, if we look at The Dark Knight, purportedly one of the most successful comic movies at all time, it just looks like he was trying to make a good movie about Batman. In no way did it try to appeal exclusively to comic book fans or preteens, it was just a movie that explored Batman's darker themes in a great way.

Some people retort that it's compared to Twilight simply because it has romance and is appealing to women, and do I hate women or something? Well, I hate movies made for women, at least, especially if they are in the same vein at Twilight. Sure, romance has always been an aspect of Spider-Man, but only because it was just another thing that clashed with his superheroics in a dramatic way. Spider-Man was never solely about who he was going out with (Yet another reason why Brand New Day sucked) but instead it was about how he was going to juggle the two pasttimes. Back in the day, the comics didn't detail every little date between Peter and Gwen, but it showed enough how they were close and how Peter cared, so it was truly heartbreaking when she died.

Let's look at this quote from the article:

"Raimi’s films were for the teenage boys who used to dress up in Spider-Man pyjamas; Webb’s is for girls whose other halves may soon be dressing up in Spider-Man pyjamas for their benefit.

See, that's the problem. Spider-Man, at its core, is not about being a hot guy with smoldering eyes that happens to have a secret life fighting crime so he has deep, complex emotions. It's really a nerd fantasy. He has fantastic powers and adventures that set him apart from the kid he used to be, but still has problems so we understand where he's coming from. The core of the character is a good person who has a lot more power than he's used to, stuck in situations where he has to do the right thing, at the cost to himself. Spider-Man punches bad guys, but at the end of the day he sits down and realizes the cost of doing that.

Should I be worried? I'll answer that with a definite yes. Will I still see the movie?

...Yes. I can't help it! I even saw Spider-Man 3! My devotion knows no bounds. Plus, it would be kinda nice to be really angry about something again, and I'm sure all of you can reap the benefits.

P.S. On odd chance it's not a horrible movie, here's some speculation on the costume. From the Amazing Spider-Man game, there's this page, showing 2 alternate costumes for the game, one with a belt and one without. My question: Is the belt a game-only addition to the costume? If it shows up late in the movie, that would give me hope for a Spider-Signal, because I love that thing. The Spider-Signal rocks.

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