Tag Archives: sci-fi

Venom, Anti-Heromantic

 

venom-movie-trailer-release-date-tom-hardy-castThe newest iteration of the infamous symbiotic Spider-Man villain, Venom, as portrayed by the seasoned Tom Hardy, is one I am definitely now keeping tabs on.

The film, a standalone anti-hero origin story, has gotten a lot of mixed reaction amid seemingly bizarre shifts in tone and clarity, but this comes, I think at a misunderstanding what this movie is supposed to be.

Symbiotes from space? Check.

Unwarranted human testing? Check.

Nosy, down on his luck Eddie Brock? Check!

Brock takes on a lot of flack as an investigative journalist meddling often where he is unwelcome, as one would expect in such a line of work. After covertly snaking information from the Life Corporation via his girlfriend, Anne Weying, Brock sets out to expose the under-handed dealings underway at Life Corp.

It does not go well, as one might expect, or does it?

Losing her job, Weying ditches Brock. Alone and also out of work, Brock eventually finds himself back at Life Corp and this time he does not leave alone.

The symbiote known as Venom latches on, and they slowly become one.

How’s that for a meet-cute?

From here on out, Venom follows Brock as he adjusts to his parasi– er symbiote, never quite getting the hang of it, stumbling around sick and afraid.

Coming to ‘Venom’ I expected what most might, an extra-terrestrial evil come to seek vengeance against those that have displaced it in order to return home, or cause further damage.

What I did not expect was the love story.

If you have not seen Venom, you can stop reading here and go right that wrong.

As Venom wraps up, we see Brock meet with Weying in a post-breakup, post-chaos touching base, he is calm and yearning, they share a kiss and ultimately part ways, leaving the chance for reuniting on the table (sequel fodder, no doubt).

This is not the love story I want you to notice.

venom-converses-with-eddie-brock-in-the-venom-movie

Venom, having found a perfect host in Eddie, comes to take a liking for him, a comfort in the knowledge that there is safety and sustenance on this unfamiliar planet in the form of a man.

Eddie too comes to grow an affection for his symbiote, accepting his fate and reveling in the power it brings him.

Venom and Eddie, quite simply, are falling in love. Fans of the comics will see this as no surprise, as it is well documented the characters share an unconventional romance, essentially becoming partners in their time spent together in their symbiotic revelry.

I, not being as familiar, found this delightful and refreshing in an age where sex and gender is finally beginning to be seen for its fluidity and many facets.

I couldn’t help but feel a warmth in my heart as we watch Eddie walk away from Weying down a San Francisco street asking Venom what they would like to do next?

No declaration of love, no wild strange sex encounter (yet), but simply a man asking his symbiote what they might like to see or experience in the expansive, sunny city.

Whether or not they stick to this aspect of the Brock/Venom relationship remains to be seen, but god-damn it I’m rooting for them.

Venom is in theaters now, go see it.

The Return of Rick and Morty

by Anthony Wetmore (@TheMisterPipes, GhostConch)

Last night saw the return of the polarizing Rick and Morty, the warped science fiction themed cartoon from the minds of Justin Roiland (House of Cosbys, Channel 101) and Dan Harmon (Community, Harmontown). Rick and Morty premiered it’s second season on alt. comedy channel Adult Swim with an episode that defies standards and promises an even better second run. 

The strange dynamic we see between Morty Smith and his alcoholic, narcissistic, devil may care scientist Rick Sanchez is challenged once again as chaos ensues in a way only they could manufacture. From the first few minutes, we’re at a standstill. Time has been stopped to clean and fix the house in order to keep peace within the Smith household. Only when time begins again does the problem arise, of course. As time begins to literally fracture and split, creating first two realities, then four, then eight… Rick and Morty along with sister Summer must try to set things right.

I don’t want to give away too much more, as the episode is a true spectacle in terms of animation, concept, and depth. In this return to prime time, we see not only another wacky, crude adventure punctuated by Rick’s belching and Morty’s incessant nervous whining. There is also a redefining of the relationship between the two titular characters through the strangeness. Despite irrefutable mathematical evidence that Morty and Summer are actual, literal shit, Rick finds himself deeply incensed to both, grandfatherly love projected through a broken prism to rain down on Morty.

The clear Doc Brown/Marty McFly parallel is ever present but consistently takes a backseat to deeper, more clearly defined unique characters. Going back to the future is nothing at all for these two, neither is changing the present. Whether or not Rick and Morty becomes the next mammoth adult-oriented cartoon to take television by storm remains to be seen, if it doesn’t,  the outlandish approach to long-standing conventions will remain a legend spoken of in hushed tones in the hallowed halls of cartoon reverence.

Rick and Morty airs on [adult swim] on Sundays at 10 PM 

[Image courtesy of: www.idigitaltimes.com]

ABC’s ‘The Whispers’ is Adaptation Done Right

by Anthony Wetmore (@TheMisterPipes, GhostConch)

There’s something strange happening slowly across the world. A low-key, unknown paranormal presence is haunting Earth feeding on what some often yearn for, innocence and to be wholly oblivious to the dark side of human life. Children around the age of 7-9 develop a singular imaginary friend called Drill who is much more than just innocent play.

That is the premise for ABCs The Whispers’  airing Monday nights at 10 PM EST, and it grips with an urgent presence. Based on a short story “Zero Hour”  from Ray Bradbury’s ‘The Illustrated Man’ the show manages to, sometimes too smoothly, stretch and twist the simple and chilling premise into interesting paranormal drama with echoes of ‘The Twilight Zone’ , ’The X-Files’ and previous ABC paranormal drama ventures as Lost’ without all the heavy-handedness and not-so-recent ‘V’ remake with an amplified wisdom of the material they’re handling.

The children featured throughout are endearing and all so oddly calm and on board with a being perhaps not without terrible intentions.  The main cast featuring Lily Rabe (American Horror Story), Milo Ventimiglia (Gilmore GirlsHeroes), Barry Sloane (Revenge), Catalina Davis, and Kristen Connolly (House of Cards) rounds out the mood and color of the shows strangely paced consistent bits of revelation.

You can watch the first five minutes of the premiere episode above. If this draws you in the way it does me.

You can catch up with full episodes over at ABC.com and of course at 10PM EST on ABC.

[Video courtesy of: ABC Television Network]