The name’s Elba, Idris Elba

So with Spectre being the last Bond movie Daniel Craig there is talk about who could be the next Bond. My money, for what’s it’s worth should be Idris Elba. For those of you who don’t know him, one of his most famous role was an American Drug kingpin called Russell “Stringer” Bell from “The Wire” and is also known as Heimdall from the Thor movies. He is a fantastic actor who really should be given the chance to play Bond.

There are those who believe he shouldn’t be cast as Bond because he’s of Aftrerican decent but my question is, does that really matter any more? Now granted if this was the first adaptation then one should stick to the source material as close as possible, but this clearly isn’t the case anymore. And again to be fair, this isn’t some minor character whose skin colour doesn’t matter, like Brains from the new Thunderbirds show. This is a main character we’re talking about, but again why should it matter.

For those playing at home, we’ve had 6 white males playing the role of Bond, and with the exception of George Lazenby all were great actors. To be fair Mr. Lazenby’s acting was fine, but hardly noteworthy. The fact is, Idris Elba wouldn’t look out of place as Bond because of how often the role changes hands. There is the fan theory that James Bond is just a code name for the agent, a pre-built life to make it easy to get in and out of a country and to protect any surviving family members.

Idris Elba has the screen presence to be a fantastic Bond, and is an amazing actor. He can be street tough like in Rock and Rolla, businessman like in the “The Wire”, giant robot pilot in Pacific Rim to alcoholic monk from Ghost Rider spirit of Vengeance. To deny the man the chance to play one of cinemas iconic roles based on the colour of his skin is a ridiculously outdated concept. The role itself should go to who is the most talented person who can pull it off, and Mr Elba would be a perfect fit for it.

So best of luck Mr. Elba, I hope you get the role and kill it. You deserve it.

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Transformer Age of Extinction isn’t that bad.

So I’ve got a confession to make and it’s fairly serious but I feel it’s best to just get it out there. I don’t think Transformers: Age of Extinction is a bad movie. There I said it. It’s out in the open. And in fact, I think it’s kind good, maybe not great and a little long, but much better then what people think it is.

See Michael Bay has an unfortunate relationship with people. He makes big movies well, and they are rarely moving or thought provoking on the surface, which is hard to do with helicopter shots and explosions. Or are they? See throughout all the explosions of the Transformers movies, the silly dialogue, so-so acting and gratuitous shots of up-skirting, the movies have interesting themes underneath.

One of the underlying themes of Sci-Fi is people messing around with technology they don’t fully understand in order to make a big profit. Companies in the Transformers universe exploit the Transformers, melting them down to make new ones, reverse engineering them in order to create phones, fridges etc without stopping to think whether they should.

Age of Extinction is no different. The bad guys are motivated by pure greed and a sense of entitlement. They have little to no regard for beings they know are alive but are willing to kill them just for their metal so they can make their own Transformers out of it for big profit. If they allowed the Transformers to be left alone, then the destruction in the third act wouldn’t have happened. Which brings me to the levels of destruction.

Mr Bay excels at blowing stuff up, and it’s one of the major reasons he gets the top directing gig with the series, and it’s kind of realistic in some sense. During any fight scene, there are numerous explosions, bullets flying around and a lot of innocents die. There is no escaping that fact. This is the response to people who say “Hey I wish the Transformers were real” if they were real then a lot of people would die in the cross fire. These are movies in which 30 feet tall robots crash into each other. I would be surprised if there wasn’t any collateral damage.

As for drift being racial, well, this isn’t really the case. Drift in the comics, is portrayed as a religious figure with a strong sense of honour and kicks butt using swords. Drift appears in the movie as a Bushido warrior, voiced by Ken Wanatabe, and after the skids and mudflap debacle in number 2 I can see why people would be freaking out. However that portrayal is totally fine, because Transformers assimilate to Earth culture. Drift in the movie is a being of honour and loyalty to Optimus Prime, and he has adopted the look of an old style Japanese warrior because that fits his personality. That said, they fashioned him of Springer, who is my favourite Transformer and he doesn’t appear so I’m not to happy about that but I’ll live.

Look movies are thing of personal taste, and while AoE is about 20 minutes too long, it’s not inherently bad. It’s a popcorn flick full of loud characters, exciting action and you shouldn’t be ashamed to say you enjoy it. It’s not as bad as every one thinks it is and it is a lot better then people give it credit for.

Doctor Who crossovers that need to happen.

Doctor Who is big right now which is quite surprising for a show that first finished in the 80s then was brought back to life and starred the bloke who would go on to pretend to be a dark elf and is currently the best big screen version of Destro so far. Since then we’ve had 4 other doctors and a legion of Whovians and is the best PG horror series out there. The series has featured stories from such varied writers such as Neil Gaiman and Paul Cornell. My question is, what comes next?

Don’t worry whovians, I’ve got your back. To avoid repeated story lines and villain overexposure what’s needed is the classic plot device, the crossover. The magic of Doctor Who is that it can be molded to what ever you need it to be. Victorian England story? Done. Modern story about politics? Done. The concept is so brilliant that you have any story you want and it will work. I mean we’ve had Star Trek crossover so with that in mind, these are the cross overs that should happen.

Supernatural/ Doctor Who
The Show: Supernatural for those of you who don’t know it features two impossibly handsome brothers who drive across America fighting and killing monsters, ghosts and other supernatural creatures. I did watch this but I lost track of the events around the time Dean drunk whiskey mixed with phoenix ahses to kill the mother of all monsters. Yeah it gets bit weird some time.
The Plot: The Doctor is investigating a disturbance at a house in which the brothers are at because of a local legend. The cross paths and have the science Vs. religion debate before finding out that it’s wayward alien who is trap on Earth. The Doctor rescues the Alien and grants the brothers one trip to see their parents during happier times.
Highlight of the episode: Seeing Jensen Ackles crack English jokes as Peter Capaldi grimaces. Plus I’m certain that even hinting at a crossover would explode tumblr so that’s another reason to do it.

Sons of Anarchy/ Doctor Who
The Show: Sons of Anarchy is gossip girls for guys, except that SoA has about 2.5 deaths per episode over gossip girls. I think because I’ve never seen gossip girls so if you’ll have to forgive me if I’m wrong. SoA features guys in biker leather committing crimes so we’ve already got the classic set up of the odd couple trying to work together. And before some one complains that it’s finished, need I remind you the Doctor is a time traveler and the cross over should happen in his show.
The Plot: The Doctor appears in what would be season 5, one of the early episodes. He tries to warn Jax about the future if he continues down the path he has chosen for himself. We then catch up in later and the Doctor talks to Jax again, who laments not listening to the crazy British fellow who claimed to be from the future. Jax makes the Doctor an honorary member of the Sons and they part way as friends
Highlight: Seeing Peter Capaldi on a motorcycle while wearing the SoA cut would be fantastic.

House/ Doctor Who
The Show: Hugh Laurie plays a doctor whose job it is to diagnose patients with bizarre symptoms. He is so brilliant he can be a dick to every one because he is always right at the end of the episode. Much like Doctor Who in some regards.
The Plot: One of the alien species shows up, House knows exactly what it is and what is wrong with it which leads The Doctor to believe House is a time lord. Really, it’s that House overheard the pair talking and every one has a good chuckle at the end.
The Highlight: Seeing Peter Capaldi attempt an American accent and the Doctor pretending to be a medical doctor would be great..

Game of Thrones/ Doctor Who.
The show: If you haven’t heard of Game of Thrones is can be summed with with sex and violence in medieval England with a touch of dragons. Also if you do start watchiung it, don’t become attached to any character, because they will die.
The Plot: The Doctor arrives to visit, but is quickly caught by the King on the Iron Throne. Meanwhile the Cyber Man show up to attempt to steal the Iron Throne, only to witness the barbaric fights and decide to leave the GoT lands well enough alone.
The Highlight: Seeing Peter Capaldi’s face at the horror that is the GoT universe would be amazing. That and i’m pretty sure the internet would explode if this really was announced.

So those are mine, what Doctor Who crossover series would you like to see happen?

G.I.Joe should get a decent video game

 

Being a big fan of G.I.Joe, I’ve come to accept certain things about life. It’ll never be the best selling comic, for example. Another aspect that I’ve sadly come to terms with is that they’ll never be a Triple A title for G.I.Joe in the video game world. By that I mean a G.I.Joe game that says it in the title. The up coming War Chest game looks fantastic, but sadly isn’t G.I.Joe exclusive. Think about it for a second. The problem inherit with G.I.Joe is the view from the outside, it’s Call of Duty the comics book, except with crazier villains.

Not to mention that the Call of Duty video games already have the market locked down with U.S. Armed forces against an evil super terrorist group. Advance Warfare could’ve replaced Kevin Spacey with Cobra Commander for the same effect. So what can be done with my favourite franchise? In fact that is one way to make Advance Warfare more enjoyable is if you pretend Atlas is really Cobra.

So if a G.I.Joe game were to be made, where would you start? The main strength of the Joe series is in the characters. There are dozens of them and so like Transformers you don’t have to worry about creating a protagonist for a game. For some this would be Snake Eyes, and unstoppable bad-ass super ninja who uses an Uzi, which to me neglects the main roster. Plus Snake Eyes already has his own game, so there is that.

The second strength is the fact that it comes preloaded with vehicles. From tanks, to jets to boats almost all manor of vehicles are there in the pages, so scale wouldn’t be a problem. It could as big as the designers want it to.

For all intents and purposes, the game “The Outfit” was a largely forgettable World War 2 set third person game in which you played as one of three heroes who could call in support items, such as machines gun emplacements and tanks to help you do battle. It was a template that could be used for a G.I.Joe to great effect.

But barring that what game would I make using the G.I.Joe license? A MOBA. See the G.I.Joe franchise, like Transformers lends itself to the idea of total war. Lands, Sea and Air. You could make the game as simple as putting two teams for 5 against each other with the sole purpose of destroying the base. Yes, there wouldn’t really be a story line but so what? That doesn’t really matter with some games. A MOBAs story is patch work at best, and Unreal Tournament has shown that a strong single player story isn’t needed as long as the game play is fantastic.

As you leveled up in game you’d unlock perks for your character, based on their role, from soldier, support etc. Weapons and attachments could be added to your character as well, from more ammo pouches to better accuracy.

So come on Hasbro, you have a golden license that you can print money with. Please don’t let the best G.I.Joe video game of recent years be a re-skinned ipad touch game with Snake Eyes beating up ninjas. At the very least, throw as a bone and give us another Ipad based game. Just keep DnA studios away from it. You could hardly call their last effort a game.