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Quick Pats of Butter: The Spy Edition!

November 7, 2010

Beleaguered and broke MGM is finally getting its act together and this is great news for Bond fans who have been watching the MGM saga unfold and wondering when that doggone Bond 23 would arrive in theaters.

New James Bond films may be released every second year starting in November 2012, MGM said. It aims to own 50 percent of Bond 23, due out that year, with an equal partner paying all of the production costs, it said. Later Bond movies would be wholly owned and funded by MGM, the company said.

Awesome, dudes, but when are we going to have a title. I am not getting emotionally invested in Bond 23 until I can call it something other than Bond 23!

In the wake of NBC’s abrupt cancellation of its struggling spy soap Undercovers EW writer Jeff Jensen offers three reasons why the show bombed. As expected he places some of the blame on the lack of star power of its lead actors. Oh like Jennifer Garner was so freaking famous when she was cast on Abrams series Alias. Wasn’t she like doing bit parts in films and some minor role on Felicity?

Undercovers focused on Steven and Samantha Bloom, married ex-spies who run an L.A. catering business who get sucked back into the cloak and dagger life. It certainly isn’t an uncommercial concept. After all, Brad Pitt an Angelina Jolie scored one of the biggest hits of their respective careers with a very similar premise, the 2005 smash Mr. and Mrs. Smith, about unhappily married secret agent assassins. But did the premise flatter the stars, or did the stars flatter the premise? Obviously, it was the latter (enhanced, of course, by the hot sauce of all that tabloid notoriety at the time), and I dare say Undercovers didn’t succeed because Abrams and Co. eschewed a proven formula and went unconventional, i.e. casting total unknowns that possessed zero celebrity baggage, interesting or otherwise. We say this with all due respect to Boris Kodjoe and Gugu Mbatha-Raw, both promising talents who will hopefully find great success in other projects, but one person’s “Fresh new faces are really exciting!” is another person’s “Who the hell are they and why should I care?” Bottom line: Undercovers needed to be a star vehicle for two sexy, established celebs with compelling career stories that could have enhanced their roles with irony and interest.

Ouch. But I guess he meant that in the kindest way possible. Naturally, I strongly disagree with his argument.

Batman setting up franchises like Kentucky Fried Chicken is the latest twist in the superhero’s saga, which include him dying, involves Batman incorporating himself and basically becoming a brand rather than just one lone eccentric rich dude with some unresolved childhood traumas.

Bruce – whom he pointed out is a “master tactician” – will begin a worldwide search for others to fill the mantle… or mantles, rather, of the Bat. “He is changing his persona from that of a playboy to saying he is socially responsible,” he explained. “He’s saying, ‘I have a goal, and part of that is funding Batman.”

For well over a year now, Bruce’s former sidekick Dick Grayson has been Batman in the pages of the comics, but now that Batman will be more than one person, not to mention a corporate entity (the title of the new series “Batman, Inc.” says it all), how will people react?

I do not even know what to say about this.

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8 Comments leave one →
  1. November 7, 2010 12:45 pm

    Batman, Inc.?? Ugh. Because I love a superhero corporation!!

  2. November 7, 2010 5:02 pm

    Because I love a superhero corporation!!

    My question is: how the hell are they going to afford the insurance? I’m not a big fan on this take on Batman, but then I never had a lot of emotional investment in the DC comic universes. My favorite Batman was the Sherlock Holmesian detective who did most of his best work in the crime lab in the basement.

  3. November 8, 2010 1:31 am

    I have not read a comic since Sandman back in high school, but I think the concept is great. Its a means to introduce new heroes while still keeping the star around to pull in readers. Would love to watch this on saturday morning with a big bowl of Apple Jacks, right after Defenders of the Earth and Dungeons and Dragons. I still ain’t sure what happened to Venger.

  4. evmaroon permalink
    November 8, 2010 3:57 am

    They’re just trying to replicate the Iron Man franchise, in which he’s a zillionaire with robots for best friends, and reproducable iron man machines. Blah blah, boring zzzzz.

  5. IrishUp permalink
    November 8, 2010 11:27 am

    Who woulda thunk that Bruce Wayne would look to the Dread Pirate Roberts buisiness model?

    So, we have to wait another year for a Bond movie. In the meantime, is there anything at all good coming out for this holiday season? WON’T SOMEBODY THINK OF THE CHILDRENZ!1!

  6. November 9, 2010 2:07 am

    It’s funny, I am currently reading Batwoman, Batgirl, Red Robin (which is a the secret ID of Tim Drake, the last person to fill Robin’s green trunks) and Birds of Prey, all of which are connected to the Batman family/world in some way. And yet you could not pay me enough money to ever read a Batman-centric book. I like him as a side character in these satellite books or when he shows up in the Justice League or guests in some other hero’s comic. But on his own? Egads no. Still, I am curious to see how long the Batman, Inc. idea lasts. Although I personally prefer Dick Grayson as Batman to Bruce Wayne. He’s far less self-important and joyless.

  7. November 9, 2010 8:00 am

    Although I personally prefer Dick Grayson as Batman to Bruce Wayne. He’s far less self-important and joyless.

    Agreed!!! These are the only Batman comics I am familiar with.

  8. November 10, 2010 10:32 pm

    Oh my stars, my reward for finally getting caught up on my reading backlog is good news about Bond?! AWESOME.

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