Thursday, March 22, 2018

MadCap's Trailer Reactions - "Deadpool 2"

Well. Damn.

Also, the trailer is obviously explicit to start - but it's Deadpool so you really have no excuse for expecting it to be otherwise. Actual spoilers start below the cut, if you haven't already seen the trailer yourself.

Sunday, March 18, 2018

MadCap's Comic Reviews - "Doctor Strange #2"

So, pro-tip for those of you wanting to get into internet reviewing - never do almost an entire review of something before going back and finding out that you've already reviewed it. Because, yeah, that happened.

Still, at the very least, it gives me a good base to go off of. If you don't feel like clicking the above link, here's a quick recap of Issue #1. Zelma Stanton, a young woman who worked as a librarian and was "lol snarky" incarnate came to Doctor Strange for some assistance dealing with some magical maggots that had wormed their way into her brain. Then they got out. With Issue #2, we're going to pick up right where we left off - maggot apocalypse already in progress.

Saturday, March 17, 2018

MadCap's Comic Reviews - "Ben Reilly: The Scarlet Spider #3"

Last time on Dragonball Z...I mean, Ben Reilly: The Scarlet Spider...

Issue #2 saw Ben coming to grips with the reality of what he's done, doing some twistedly altruistic things, and be a snarky jackass. Issue #2 saw Kaine, on the other hand, running around fake torturing a woman for information about Ben, breaking into an office building in a way that would make John McClane weep with pride, and finding out what it's like to be on the receiving end of more dakka. Where will Issue #3 take us? Well, for starters, it takes us back to Ben Reilly's signature costume as the Scarlet Spider on the cover.

Saturday, March 10, 2018

MadCap's Comic Reviews - "Ben Reilly: The Scarlet Spider #2"

When we last left Ben Reilly, he had come to Las Vegas in order to hide from not only Peter Parker but also his "brother" Kaine, who was in pursuit of him (though Ben's not aware of that fact just yet). Hitting up an old contact from his brief stint as a super villain, Ben found himself in the office of Cassandra Mercury with a gun in his face. Issue number two picks up with the execution of Ben Reilly, already in progress. Unfortunately for Cassandra Mercury, she's just an average human and no bullet is any match for a prepared Spider family member with their Spider-Sense intact.
"Colt 45...semi-automatic...PLAY-DOH!"

After a bit of a stand-off, Ben gets some more information from Cassandra about her daughter, Abigail. Ben mentions she was suffering from Crooks' Disease, which would not yet be fatal. Cassandra admits that she is not, but she's in a coma that her doctor isn't expecting her to wake up from, so she might as well be dead. Ben asks to see her and is taken.

Kaine, meanwhile, is treating Ben's former associate Rita to a torturing...sorry, it's "enhanced interrogation" now, according to him. Through claiming that he's planning to waterboard her with scalding hot water rather than the usual cold, Kaine manages to intimidate her into revealing a clue to Ben's location - that he was planning to go to Broadway, but not the one in New York, as a flashback tells us. After getting her to reveal her password and her office floor at New U, Kaine reveals that it was just a bucket of dry ice and that he had no intention of actually harming her.

A far cry from the man who brutally murdered Otto Octavius back in the 90's.

...he got better, obviously, but that's neither here nor there.
Mock torturing people really IS an improvement for him.

Back in Vegas, after an awkward elevator ride, Ben is brought to little Abigail. She is, as Cassandra said, completely comatose. Ben comes up to her bedside, stunned into silence, and has a gun pulled on him by Cassandra....who relents the moment that she realizes that Abigail has woken up, asking for a glass of water. Slate and Ben head out into the hallway and end up in a tussle over what just happened Ben politely suggesting (with a gun in Slate's mouth for emphasis) that they just play nice and get along so as not to ruin Cassandra's happy moment.

Not long after, Ben bluffs his way into convincing Cassandra that not only did he cause Abigail to wake up via telepathy, but that he can cure her with some funding and time. As a condition of this, June ends up getting free room and board at the casino as well as all the quarters she can stomach.
Awww, Ben's feeding her gambling addiction!

Meanwhile, Kaine breaks into New U's offices and finds Rita's office. Trolling through the database, he uses the Broadway clue and finds records of Abigail's condition and surmises that Ben has gone there. While Kaine using the records technically makes sense, and he ultimately does deduce correctly, I went ahead and checked Wikipedia for places that are either named or related to Broadway. There are at least fifteen that have no relation to New York or Nevada. Regardless, he's right and is already making plans to go after Ben when two men in tactical gear burst into the office he's in...and open fire on him with some lovely automatic weapons, ending the issue.

The tone has definitely gotten a little more serious here. No comical hallucinations of the Scarlet Spider or the Jackal for Ben, we have Kaine threatening to waterboard a woman (even though he had no intention of doing so), and an almost gratuitous overuse of gun play. We are clearly far and away from the high flying adventures of Peter Parker, this series being a different animal entirely (not to say that Spidey can't be dark). We're starting to see a status quo develop - Ben working for Cassandra to develop a cure for Crooks' Disease, Aunt June living at the casino, Ben trying to become a hero, Kaine's efforts to stop him because he believes he's still a villain (and rightly so). We also get further development on Ben trying to get a grasp on a familiarity to his life as he gets Aunt June room and board at the well as endless quarters to feed her gambling addiction.

...two out of three ain't bad?

All the ingredients are here for something great, and we'll be getting into it next Saturday!

Face front, True Believers!
*record scratch* "Hi...that's me. You're probably wondering how I got here..."

Ben Reilly: The Scarlet Spider #2 comes to us from Marvel Comics.Written by Peter David, Penciled by Mark Bagley, Inked by John Dell, color artist'd by Jason Keith, and lettered by Joe Caramgna. They all did great!

For the latest from the MadCapMunchkin, be sure to follow him on Twitter @MadCapMunchkin.

Friday, March 9, 2018

MadCap's Game Reviews - "Friday the 13th: The Game"

I think anyone who comes around my blog in October knows that I'm a fan of the Friday the 13th franchise, particularly since I've reviewed the first three films in the original series and the 2009 remake (and have plans to review the others as well) and given all but one of them a glowing recommendation. They aren't the height of cinematic excellence, sure, but there's something to like about all of them in one way or another if someone's bothering to look.

That being said, I'm not an uber-fan in the same way I am for, let's say, the Halloween franchise. Luckily, I've found some people who are and they made this game. IllFonic, a Colorado-based developer known previously for Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric and Star Citizen, have shown a lot of love and dedication to the Friday the 13th franchise.  And I mean a lot of it. So much so that they made a Kickstarter and BackerKit for this game, and it became the 124th most crowdfunded project of all time, collecting just shy of $1.3 million through both platforms.

Ho. Lee. Crap.

Seriously, it's almost like this was something that people really, really wanted or something.

Monday, March 5, 2018

MadCap's Reel Thoughts - "Captain America: The Winter Soldier"

After the horribly offensive mess that was Iron Man 3 and the experiment in utter boredom that was Thor: The Dark World, it was more than time for Marvel to get over the fact that it had produced one of the highest-grossing films of all time and get back to actually producing quality products. Now, I know what some of you might be thinking - "Hey, Madcap! Didn't you already review this film four years ago?" Well, you are technically correct. I did one of my "MadCap At The Movies" segments on it. But there's a fundamental difference between those and my "Reel Thoughts". "MadCap At The Movies" is set up to give my initial thoughts on a film right after I see it in a theater (a rare occurrence when you see how few I've done), while "Reel Thoughts" allows me to look at films with the benefit of time and more thought put into them beyond the initial hype.

So, does The Winter Soldier still hold up after four years? Is it worth the hype?

...well, obviously, yeah.

Saturday, March 3, 2018

MadCap's Comic Reviews - "Ben Reilly: The Scarlet Spider #1"

The more astute of my readers (and good luck figuring out, between the three of you, who I'm talking about) might have noticed that I am a fan of Spider-Man. I'm not a fan of pretty much anything that Marvel has done with Spider-Man (in the comics, anyway) since about 2007. Why? Because Spider-Man had his entire status quo altered by a very, very poor deus (or should I say devil) ex machima that should have been laughed out of the writer's room in concept, much less ever make it into print. Joe Quesada insists that his magnum opus One More Day is a story about love and sacrifice, when it is really a story about Peter Parker rejecting his own creed of "with great power comes great responsibility".

So yes, it was basically Secret Empire before Secret Empire ever existed. But One More Day at least had the decency to only be four issues long.

However, as you can tell from the title, my hatred of Joe Quesada and Nick Spencer (who both still have jobs and Nick Spencer is due to take over for Dan Slott in writing Spidey - oh joy!) isn't what we're here to talk about. We can save that for another day. No, we're here to talk about the Scarlet Spider!, not that one, though I could see why you might think that. Kaine did have the last ongoing series under the name and he has been, for a few years now, the only active Scarlet Spider, but no. I'm here to talk about the original Scarlet Spider: Ben Muckfothering Reilly.

And yes, that is his legal name.