Cast of the suicide squad announced and it's… interesting

“The official cast list is as follows:”

    • Jared Leto – The Joker
    • Will Smith – Deadshot
    • Tom Hardy – Rick Flagg
    • Margot Robbie – Harley Quinn
    • Jai Courtney – Boomerang
    • Cara Delevingne – Enchantress

Read more: http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/movies/news/a614043/suicide-squad-cast-confirmed-will-smith-jared-leto-tom-hardy-to-star.html#~oXl63jDiNv5eAs#ixzz3KmzN7dci

Now this is an interesting one, the rumours for the suicide squad film have been floating around for the past few months with names like Will Smith, Margot Robbie and Jared Leto thrown around, all great actors mind you, though imagining them all together in the same team could take a little getting used to, though maybe not with Will Smith and Margot Robbie as they start together in Focus, which looks pretty good but we’ll see how it goes.

So those actors above will all be in the movie apparently, as will, wait for it…. Cara Delevigne, as Enchantress? Ok did not see that coming, she was rumoured to play Harley Quinn in this but again, I was far from excited for that, just because I’m not sure how good she is an actress that is, though we’ll have to wait and see how it goes, also.

A few talking points.

Also in this cast, Jai Courtney and wait… Tom Hardy? Wow that is really good cast isn’t it? Just a few talking points though, Will Smith as a Deadshot is an interesting choice for sure, a very physical and combat focused character for one, also Deadshot is traditionally white in the comics, so I’m curious to see how he’ll come across, as a mostly humorless and serious character too. Though Will Smith has pulled that off a few times in his career, e.g. I Am Legend and Seven Pounds, Jai Courtney is a solid casting choice, an australian actor playing an australian character, he can definitely pull off the cocky, arrogant vibe Boomerang has.

Cara Delevingne as Enhcantress may be the glaring choice there, Enchantress being in the suicide squad itself is interesting, though the roster has changed multiple times in the comics, it’s gonna be a pretty big role for her to pull off, so WB must have a lot off faith in that casting. And of course Tom Hardy as Rick Flagg, hell Tom Hardy in another comic book movie… the guy’s so good at enveloping a character that I’m only expecting good things from this, seeing him in an action oriented team like the suicide squad will be pretty awesome and finally, Jared Leto as The Joker, if there’s anyone that can play flamboyant, eccentric and cocky, it’s Jared Leto surely.

When Leto was rumoured to be The Joker initially just a few weeks ago, I had trouble picturing it, but I can see it, the guy has acting chops and could pull it off comfortable, an alternative if Leto wasn’t playing the joker, Jake Gylenhaal anyone? Another method actor like Tom Hardy, he can pull off eccentric and disturbed (like he has with Nightcrawler) and he has a tonne of emotional range, but that’s wishful thinking, that being said the cast is pretty solid, I’m wondering what sort of storyline the film will be going with, especially with the Joker being a main character I’m assuming.

Also when will the Joker be in a Batman film next? Assuming he won’t be in two films in a row, Batman Vs Superman and The Suicide Squad, that’s something to think about.

The Walking Dead mid-season finale…. so that happened

So, it’s that time of year again, the big hitter shows have hit their midpoint and accordingly leave for their 2 or 3 month hiatuses with a bang, to keep audience interest and give you a reason to want to keep watching when they return of course, though fans of said shows will still tune back in next year, regardless of a lackluster mid-season finale. Anyway this mid season-finale was the culmination of the Beth-Atlanta hospital arc, which was amped up with Carol being brought into the situation, spurring Rick and most of the gang to go to Atlanta to rescue her and Beth.

As far as mid-season finales for The Walking Dead go… it was pretty good, there was a feeling of constant tension in the last 3-4 episodes in my opinion, including the unshakable feeling that someone was going to die, in traditional out of nowhere TWD style. I’ll come back to that later, but for now one interesting thing to note was how Rick came across in the last few episodes, as a sort of ruthless executioner – the dude drove into a cop and shot him dead…. well, I’ve seen fans commenting on how he’s sort of morphing into Shane, I don’t necessarily agree as I think he’s just being as ruthless and cold as he can be to protect his people, but he is coming across a bit murdery.

Season 5 has been an interesting one, an underlying theme being a focus on the brutal violence and constant death in the universe of The Walking Dead (at least that’s how I’m seeing it), we’re seeing this in some of the ‘evil’ characters reactions to Rick, wondering how he can be so cold and merciless, although some people e.g. the Terminus cannibals probably deserved swift justice.

And we also see this in characters like Sasha and Tyreese especially, struggling to come to terms with the violence they need be used to, just to survive, it’s fascinating to watch him as a character, not wanting to harm anyone but feeling so frustrated as he needs to, to protect himself and his loved ones, though going back to the mid-season finale, it was an interesting move for there to be so little death in it, for The Walking Dead at least.

Also Abrahams’ expedition group is back out of the blue, I was wondering when they would show up again – and Eugene is still knocked out? Abraham looked decidedly beaten and submissive interestingly, I wonder what’s next for him and Eugene.

And of course the shocking, awful and pointless offing of Beth is the obvious talking point, after a pretty stupid character action – trying to stab the boss cop with scissors, really? But otherwise, no one else died surprisingly, in the moments after Beths’ shock death, you could have seen that episode ending a lot differently, a shootout in the hospital halls was seconds away but I suppose it would have been a bit too much for just the halfway point in the season.

Seeing Daryl and Carols’ initial reactions to Beths’ demise were pretty gut wrenching, as was Maggies’, but I’m fascinated to see where this season goes next, how the group, now dealing with no Beth, with Noah and now with Abraham Ford, Eugene et al deal with things to come next. I have to say I’m liking the wandering group of survivors slant to this season, it opens up opportunities for exploration, more characters and constantly changing storylines, rather than having a season set in one or two locations like in season 4 with the prison and woodbury.

But in all in all it was a good, fairly eventful and ultimately depressing mid-season finale in typical Walking Dead style I guess, roll on February 2015.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens trailer reaction

Well, it’s happened… the Star Wars Episode 7 trailer (teaser really) is out and… it’s okay, not great, not awful but okay and that’s not a bad thing, we did cross off a thing or two from my trailer wishlist – some vehicles in the teaser, a character or two, which was well and good and we did see a direct antagonist in the film, the sith with the new lightsaber, which was cool.

But all in all it wasn’t a disappointment in any way, long time fans got old nods to the past Star Wars films, seeing the X-Wings, Millenium Falcon and it was interesting seeing what looked to be a new form of R2D2, or a new type of droid complete. As well as Daisy Ridley on the speeder and John Boyega in the stormtrooper outfit, appearing to be running from or to something and I’m guessing that he’s in disguise and not actually a villain in this, but we’ll see.

Interestingly, we saw none of the original Star Wars cast but I’m sure we’ll get some photos of them in character in the coming months and of course, we’ll see them when the full trailer eventually debuts but all in all. It was pretty damn good for a teaser if you ask me, we saw a fair amount, no actual action but some interesting things to go off and nerd over for a few weeks or months – until the next trailer or release of info about the film.

As far as teaser trailers go, nice job, JJ Abrams.. and Disney.

Gotham isn't half as bad as people make it out to be

So it’s 2014 and there’s a Gotham TV show, alright we’ve made it people, comic book fans/lovers all around rejoice…. but wait, the show is divisive? It’s ratings are up and down? No Batman?! Okay the show was never about Batman but the city he eventually comes into to save, that premise sounds pretty awesome, doesn’t it?

Well yes it does, the show on the other hand… I am a fan of, but I agree has had its’ ups and downs, as any ambitious show will do in the first season mind you, I’ll admit that I was sceptical about how the show would even work as a weekly thing with main characters including a pre-teen Bruce Wayne and Selina Kyle, no supervillains, plus Harvey Bullock and Gordon dealing with generic villains week by week, but I’ve been pleasantly surprised.

The over-arching and ongoing gang war in Gotham, plus the development of Arkham asylum the ongoing mystery over the Wayne murders and other insights into pre Batman Gotham have all been pretty interesting to watch, for me at least, though watching the obvious references to now somewhat normal characters future supervillain status does get a bit strained, it’s cool to just see these characters on the small screen and see how they function now.

I suppose a defence of the references could be to argue that said future supervillains must have had some sort of latent psycho-pathery in them, to become a dude that likes to plague his villains with riddles as he tortures them, or a guy with split personalities based on two sides of his face… ok as awesome as Batmans villain gallery is, some are slightly ridiculous and over the top. Which of course makes a great juxtaposition to Batmans’ level headed, calm and methodical approach, but enough about Batman, Gotham is doing a good enough job at balancing a procedural crime and cop drama with serialised elements so far, the acting has been solid throughout in my opinion, though Jada Pinkett Smith as Fish Mooney has hammed it up slightly earlier on, she’s back to being good now.

I’m genuinely interested in the show and it’s kept me watching so far with no intention of stopping, Sean Pertwee as a more outspoken, brash Alfred is a breath of fresh air and Robin Lord Taylor is killing it as an up and coming Penguin, so, so far so good as far I’m concerned, the show should just avoid rushing in all future Batman villains and keep the references on the low, we all know what they become so we don’t reminding.

That being said, the nods are nice touches for people that are fans of the show that maybe don’t know who these characters become or aren’t familiar with Batman lore/history, so fair enough.

Star Wars The Force Awakened trailer – what I'm hoping for

So if you’re a Star Wars fan or general sci-fi fan you’ll already now that the first proper look at Star Wars Ep 7 is dropping this weekend, showing in certain cinema theatres around America, though it’ll be online in a heartbeat of course, anyway as a big Star Wars fan myself, I’m hoping for a few things and hoping we’ll avoid some clichéd teasers from the trailer.

Here are a few things I’m hoping we’ll see:

. An actual character or a few at that

It’d be a shame to get a teaser with just short flashes of events from the film, or just a voiceover over dark space and an image of the Millenium Falcon or something with no characters or you know… anything to really talk about. I mentioned that specifically because that’s what the trailer’s been rumoured to be, but hopefully it isn’t. We all want to see what Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford and some of the new cast look like in their roles, fingers crossed we see them.

. A new character/monster/spaceship

It’s a new Star Wars film, the new trailer will get people talking no matter what, but the fire of hype for the film can be stoked more with a brand new character or ship being debuted, how cool would showing a brand new jedi or sith be? I’m thinking they’ll go down this route, with a small snippet of a new big evil near the end or something.

. A tease but non blatant reveal of the plot

The film’s not out for another 13 months and there’s already tonne of speculation about the plot, the trailer is great fan service in terms of giving concrete information about plot but we live in an age where films plots, characters and twists are discussed and speculated over months before they release. It can be nice going blind into a film every now and then. And anyway it’s Star Wars, if Disney/Lucas films gives us not much, as they most likely will, people will happily speculate for months over whatever we do see in the trailer.

But yeah, what I and I assume, what you don’t want to see is a just a voiceover over blank space and nothing else, some characters, a bit of action from the film would be nice, not too much of course and Luke, Leia and or Han in the trailer would be awesome.

Jurassic world trailer reaction

Yes, it’s here finally… a solid look at the somewhat long awaited new instalment in the Jurassic Park franchise, I say somewhat because it’s a film lots of people have wanted but also a film lots of people weren’t actively pining for, said people will go and watch it for sure but they haven’t been eagerly waiting for it.

And you know what, reaction on youtube comments, EW.com, Digitalspy and other sites that have hosted the trailer seems a bit mixed, I was expecting a mostly positive reception but not everyone seems to love the premise – which I do by the way. I don’t think it’s re-hashing Jurassic Park 1 at all and the hybrid dinosaur idea is pretty cool to me. And in fact, if the film wants to somewhat follow the formula for Jurassic Park 1, the universally loved and acclaimed film in the JP franchise, that’s a bad thing?

I like the idea that Jurassic World will focus on a main antagonist dinosaur as well, rather than have characters go on an adventure of sorts, getting attacked all along the way *cough JP3 cough*. This way it feels more natural, crazy hybrid dino breaks out, wrecks the island, kills a lot of people, people have to evacuate…. as sci-fi as Jurassic Park is, if this scenario was played out in real life, you’d imagine one killer dinosaur would escape rather than all of them.

Which isn’t to say that I think Jurassic World will only focus on the hybrid she-beast, we all know we’ll see raptors – we already have in the trailers, the giant lumbering brachiosauruses etc, probably Pterodactyls at some point but I doubt we’ll see the franchises signature antagonist dino though, or if we do it may be in reference only. Though how cool would a hybrid she beast, T-Rex fight be?

Anyway from what we did see in the trailer, I’m impressed, the subtle Jurassic Park theme near the end felt quite emotional and sombre, hinting at the tone of the movie, the dinosaurs looked great from what we did see and Chris Pratt is looking awesome in it already. The premise has me hooked already and if they give the hybrid dino a 2014 Godzilla treatment, albeit actually giving it enough screen time but not showing it in every scene, that would be pretty great.

It’s a weird one because Jurassic Park is overt at its’ nature, the films are about showing dinosaurs in the modenr day in all their glory and splendour, but the teasers of the hybrid from Jurassic World hint that the hybrid may not be centre stage throughout, which is an interesting turn for the Jurassic Park Series. Yes Jurassic Park 3 did do the long tease for the superdino but it eventually was centre stage but we’ll see how Jurassic World goes. And so far it’s looking good.

So Video Game High School just ended…

Yes, it’s the end of an era, the best web-series that I’ve seen just finished, after 3 seasons and much critical online acclaim, VGHS has graduated, to use a lame education related pun but it was actually really good, a very entertaining and very well written show throughout, that got better as it went on, it’s an easy recommendation if you’re an avid PC or console gamer and also into web-series in general.

The show has fantastic humour, with biting sarcasm of popular video game tropes and clichés in genres like RPGs, FPS, racing and fighting games for example, while also highlighting how cliques of gamers in the school (fans of different game genres) don’t really get along or interact at all, quite like in real life actually.

The show came from the mind of visual effects creator Freddie Wong, the show started in 2012 and quickly grew a passionate online fanbase that lapped it up, it just grew from there, with better special effects, longer running times (from 15 minutes in season 1 to 40 by season 3) and even celebrity cameos, e.g. Nathan Kress, Joel Mchale, Tony Hawk, it was great to watch the show grow as a unique project and flourish online.

Its’ success just stands as a reminder of how any concept, if done well enough can be a hit on the internet and yeah it is just a really well made show, entertaining from start to finish, with great effects for a web series and great acting throughout, definitely check it out if you haven’t seen it and if you have, that ending right? Also a few more episodes for season 3 would have been nice…. but hey, the show was great, I expectantly await Freddie Wongs’ next creation.

Oh and this post is about a week out (VGHS aired its’ last episode last Monday) but it’s still somewhat fresh.

2014, year of the geek

It’s been an interesting year, fantastic for your average comic book fan with the long awaited network premieres of The Flash, Constantine and the now divisive Gotham, as well as huge cinematic releases like the widely praised and well received Guardians Of The Galaxy and Captain America: The Winter Soldier, not forgetting X-Men Days Of Future Past and The Amazing Spiderman 2 (that did come out this year right? I’ve seen it like 3 times already).

Amyway this year has just more re-inforced one thing if anything, that geek culture is practically now popular culture, also including the ongoing popularity of comic book adaptations on TV in recent years with shows like Arrow and Agents Of Shield. Not to mention the multiple netflix series coming in 2015 (Daredevil, Luke Cage), not forgetting the slew of DC and Marvel movies that are on the way in the next 5-6 years.

Maybe this post title is a bit of a misnomer, with the 2010s’ widely being the decade of the geek, but 2014 has been a good year in particular for comic book fans, but something interesting to think about, what is the lasting appeal of comic adaptations on TV and in film? Why isn’t everyone bored of comic book films yet? Why doesn’t D.C. just re-name Batman Vs Superman, Justice League? So many questions, it would be interesting to look into all of them and I aim to, but not just in post.

I like how traditionally geeky things like Doctor Who, comic books and liking sci-fi and fantasy are somewhat cool these days, you’d almost be considered un-cool for not liking or ever watching a megahit like Game Of Thrones for example. Or for not at least saying 1 or 2 of the pretty much annual comic book movies, it’s interesting to note how these things formerly viewed as being geeky are now part of normal conversation about TV and film.

Talking about the new villain on Arrow or how cool it is that Marvel announced Captain America: Civil War amongst a number of other exciting films is kinda normal now and in fact, it’s a shame that geek culture was traditionally sidelined and always seen as alternative. When it has always had the same appeal and in my opinion, coolness about it, albeit with much more mainstream appeal now, bigger budgets and huge studios pushing sci-fi and fantasy shows and films out there.

Is it a good thing thing that geek culture and pop culture are somewhat merged in an odd, mutually beneficial way, or is it a bad thing? I’m a bit mixed on the answer, it’s a thing for sure, but you know, if more people are getting into great sci-fi, fantasy or any other traditionally geeky genres books, comics and or films because of the now mainstream identity of geek culture, then that’s awesome and I applaud it.

Oh and 2015-16,-17 and so on will also be the years of the geek and long may it continue, I suppose.

Intro to Docthewho

Hello and welcome to Docthewho, if you’re wondering what this blog is about, well a bit of everything, things that interest me specifically and things that you probably care about, from films, to TV, to music and more broadly, ‘pop culture’ in general.

If you’re here because you’re a Dr Who fan looking for a new dedicated Doctor Who blog, you’ll probably be a bit disappointed, well I am a big Dr Who fan actually but no, this isn’t a Who blog. Anyway I’ll try to keep posting regularly, about things I’ve liked from 2014 entertainment wise and things I’m looking forward to as well, I game quite frequently too, so I may post reviews or game previews every now and then.