Channel Recommendation: Valliant Renegade

I follow a couple of pop culture channels on YT, specifically ones that report on movie industry news. One such is Valliant Renegade, run by a guy who’s worked in said industry for the last twenty years or so, and knows a lot of the behind-the-scenes stuff going on with the major studios.

In his most recent episode he teamed up with a writer called WDW Pro, who runs a website covering the Disney parks in California and Florida. Not really my forte, but with the recent developments in Florida, I appreciated his expertise.

Basically this video covers why the FL government decided to strip Disney’s special status as a borderline independent state within Florida’s borders, how that special status came to be in the first place, and what Disney had been doing with it. Give it a watch.

It wasn’t very long ago that Marvel was actually good…

I’ve got an idea for an eventual video about when DisneyMarvel peaked. No spoilers yet, just know that what I’m about to say totally fortifies the theory:

Netflix-Marvel’s Daredevil series was among the top 3 of trilogies that Marvel has produced on screen in the last 10 years. Maybe top 2. (The Captain America movies were all hits too, pretty much perfect across the board.)

I’m rewatching the series with my wife. It’s her first time through them all. Man alive, compared to what we’ve gotten in the last two years from Marvel, Daredevil is trophy-worthy. I’m not high on the violence, I am extremely high on the story and the values therein.

The first seven minutes of the first episode rapidly establish the key elements of Matt Murdock’s character:

–He lives with his (single) father, who cares a great deal about him. Jack Murdock is devastated when Matt gets in a traffic accident.

–He has selfless tendencies and has since childhood. Matt pushed an old man out of the way of a car accident, getting blinded as a result.

–He’s Catholic, though less devout than his father or grandmother. Nevertheless it’s a core part of who he is. Matt goes to confession and we get some effective exposition about why he’s there.

–He’s proud of his family heritage, specifically his father’s resilience, and believes that he (Matt) has inherited that quality. He’s willing to test the idea. Those Murdock boys have the devil in them.

–He’ll risk his life and well-being to make the city he loves safer, including rescuing helpless women and beating the absolute piss out of human traffickers. End the opening with the scene at the docks, where Matt knocks out three henchmen and lets the devil out on Turk Barrett.

Great writing in TV and film is so hard to come by in the 2020s, it seems. It’s not like all the Marvel stuff was great, don’t get me wrong–and among the Netflix properties, Daredevil was the only good one. My idea of great writing is writing that makes me want to write better, to write like what I’m watching. Daredevil passes that test in spades.

More as we make our way through S1.

Confession: I’m Excited For The MCU To End

Not much to say beyond that–it’s been a great 11 years, and these characters have made it truly enjoyable. When they all go away, it will mark the end of the story for the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

I am interested to see it end. To see these heroes ride off into the sunset.

Will Disney keep bilking it? Yes. We’ll get Marvel sequels until they have done to it what they did to Star Wars, and I’m not interested in contributing to something big being brought down low.

So after Avengers: Endgame comes out, I will probably just…check out of Marvel, and see more movies that are new and exciting, if there are any.

Can’t wait to see how it wraps up!

It’s too bad that “TRON Legacy” wasn’t better.

I’m on mobile so I am not sure if the link embedded the video. It’s from the light cycle fight in TRON Legacy.

It’s already been 8 years since that movie came out. I had always heard of the original from the 80s, and I watched it before seeing this new one, in case I missed the story.

Truth be told, the sequel was kind of a mess. Disney had this old IP lying around and thought hey, we can do a sequel! Or a reboot! Or an updated version of the original, with new graphics!

Worst of all, we could try all three.

Scene for scene, it’s almost exactly the original movie, but with much better graphics. Even dialogue beats are copied. Visually it is stunning, narratively it doesn’t really seem to know what it’s after, other than your cash.

The one unassailable component is the score, by Daft Punk. Perfectly fitting, and always good for a listen. I just bought the CD the other day.

Disney has tried to do a third movie, and even had a cartoon spinoff for a while, but I think the sad truth at this point is that they have a cool concept, a cool world, but not a cool enough story to sell it all.

At least we got Daft Punk, though.