For the most part, anyone who knows me knows that I tend to love all things Whedon. This started with Buffy the Vampire Slayer (the show, not the 1992 film that loosely embodied what he wanted the character to be), continued with Angel, went full tilt with Firefly & Serenity, Dr. Horrible, and fluttered with Dollhouse. Then Mr. Whedon took to the big screen with arguably the best SuperHero movie ever made (and the 3rd highest grossing film of all time), The Avengers, and in the process became Consigliere for Marvel’s big screen franchises in the process (possibly the smartest move Marvel has ever made). Now Whedon has come back to the small screen with the Marvel Cinematic universe’s spin-off Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. which thus far has been pretty solid – and it is this solidity that concerns me.
We all need to remember that while Mr. Whedon is the creative force behind everything I have mentioned, he is not the only one responsible for every episode. There have been many great Whedon alums that penned some of the best episodes we’ve seen. Such marvelous names as Jane Espenson, Marti Noxon, David Fury, Drew Goddard, Tim Minear, and David Greenwalt just to name a few. All of these writers helped to shape the characters that I love – but when the truly heavy hitting was needed – Here comes Joss.
The review below was written by Roger Ebert in 2002. I chose to re-post it over writing my own review because he says everything I was thinking, and likely says it with greater eloquence.If I had to sum it up in a sentence I would say – It is a well made, completely unrealistic movie.
Originally Posted at RogerEbert.com
“Daddy, did God mean for you to be like this, or was it an accident? That’s little Lucy Dawson, asking her father why he isn’t quite like other people. She’s a bright kid and figures out the answer herself, and when a classmate at grade school asks, “Why does your father act like a retard?” she explains, “He is.” “I Am Sam” stars Sean Penn as Lucy’s dad, Sam, who has the IQ of a 7-year-old but is trying to raise the daughter he fathered with a homeless woman. The mother disappeared right after giving birth (her farewell words: “All I wanted was a place to sleep”), and now Sam is doing his best to cope, although sometimes Lucy has to help him with her homework. Eventually Lucy decides to stop learning so she won’t get ahead of her dad. “I don’t want to read if you can’t,” she tells him.
Sam loves the Beatles (his favorite is George). He named his daughter after “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds,” and has learned most of life’s lessons from Beatles songs. The lesson “I Am Sam” wants to teach us is, “All you need is love.” This is not quite strictly true. Sam loves his daughter more than anyone else, and she loves him, but it will take more than love for him to see her through grade school and adolescence and out into the world. Since the movie does not believe this, it has a serious disagreement with most of the audience.
Last night I attended my first viewing of Agents of S.H.E.I.L.D. on the big screen courtesy of Cinamaworld of Melbourne and Famous Faces and Funnies! I loved being able to share the viewing experience with other fans of the franchise in real life. For the series premier I shared the experience in the Twitterverse which was fun – but it was nice to be with live people, getting to see their reactions and what they do and do not catch.