Coming Soon-Ish: A Whole Bunch of Trailers From Comic Con

It’s been years since I’ve been to Comic Con, but my little nerd heart still fills with envy every July. All that cosplay, all those panels, and so many, many trailers.

Fortunately, you can get most of that online now.

The Defenders

This looks pretty damn awesome.

I’m not gonna lie: I never actually watched Iron Fist. I figured I’d at least try it, but I read so many crappy things about the show that my already lukewarm interest just fizzled out. There are so many shows that I’m actually interested in trying; I couldn’t make myself waste time on one I just didn’t care about.

I have, however, read a bunch about the show (and have, of course, watched Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Daredevil), so I’m hoping I’ll be more or less prepared for The Defenders because it looks pretty great. Evil Sigourney Weaver looks AMAZING, and I’m absurdly excited by the shot of her and Madame Gao together, like, holy shit, BADASS VILLAINESS ALERT. (I should probably be counting Elektra in that, too, but I had very mixed feelings on Elektra after the giant mess that was Daredevil’s second season.) Meanwhile, our heroes–well, the three I actually care about anyway–are just perfect. I like all their banter, the not-exactly-camaraderie between them. (Particularly, “God, you’re weird.” Jessica Jones is the best.) I am, as ever, super excited about the team dynamics.

But. One thing? It has occurred to my sister and I that Claire is the only character who’s crossed over to all four shows, the only character currently connecting all of our heroes together, and I need to be absolutely clear about this: if Claire dies so that our heroes can have a thematically relevant “push,” I will burn things to the fucking ground.

Otherwise, I’m into it.

Thor: Ragnarok

I almost didn’t watch this trailer. They already sold me with the teaser, and once I’m hooked, I usually try to avoid seeing too much before watching the actual film itself. Ultimately, though, I caved and I’m actually glad I did because this is a spectacular trailer. Still. It’s the last one I’ll watch voluntarily. (I mean, within reason. If a Ragnarok trailer plays while I’m at the movie theater or something, I’m not, like, gonna close my eyes, stick my fingers in my ears, and sing “LA LA LA” to avoid it. Mostly because I’d rather not get murdered by angry nerds. Or at all.)

But man, this looks great. I’m into ALL of it: Tessa Thompson as Valkyrie, Jeff Goldblum as Alien Jeff Goldblum, a team-up between Thor and Bruce/Hulk, another team-up between Thor and Loki, Cate Blanchett as the Goddess of Death. (Seriously. I NEED that hat. I NEED IT.) The action looks spectacular, the music is perfect, and oh my God, Hulk talks! Like, for more than three words at a time!

I’m ready for this, you guys. I’m so, so ready.

Justice League

Eh. Flash made me laugh a couple of times, especially the line, “It’s really cool you guys seem ready to do battle and stuff, but I’ve never done battle. I’ve just pushed some people and run away.” HA. I suspect that he and Wonder Woman are easily going to be my favorites. And I’m definitely into J.K. Simmons as Commissioner Gordon.

Still, I feel like my reaction to this trailer was more lukewarm than most, partly because some of the action feels muddy to me, or perhaps because I just couldn’t get past the line: “Superman was a beacon to the world. He didn’t just save people. He made them see the best parts of themselves.”

Cause like, no? I mean, traditionally, sure, that’s exactly what Superman’s supposed to be around for, but you don’t get to just throw in a bullshit line like that after Man of Steel and Batman vs. Superman, where Superman was kind of a glum asshole and half the country didn’t trust his alien ass. That is some what-the-fuckery of the highest order. I am not okay with this.

Ready Player One

This is . . . sort of interesting? It’s been quite a while since I’ve read the book, which if memory serves was enjoyable enough, though I liked it more in concept than execution. That’s kind of how I’m feeling with this first trailer: I’m still interested in the world, in OASIS, in catching all the many, many pop culture references. Considerably less into the VO, however, and many of the CGI/action scenes. I’m not exactly blown away by the look of the film, which is a unfortunate. A story like this, you kind of want it to look spectacular. You want it to look like nothing you’ve ever quite seen.

Then again, it’s only the first teaser. I might be more impressed with other trailers down the road. All I know is, at this point, even I’m starting to get a little tired of everyone’s 80’s fetish. Can we finally skip forward a decade, please? (In the film’s defense, there are 90’s references here: the most obvious one being The Iron Giant. But that line “I wish I’d grown up in the 1980’s like all my heroes” . . . yeah. Cue some serious eye rolling.)

Stranger Things

Speaking of 80’s nostalgia.

I’m definitely more excited about this than Ready Player One. Cause, like, c’mon. Thriller. Plus, so much great spooky imagery and just . . . I don’t know, neat stuff. Sorry, apparently I have no articulation today.

I’m super interested in Will, which is cool because last season was mostly about the people around Will. (That’s not a knock. That’s what first season needed to be. I’m just happy to see second season move past that.) I completely forgot they got Sean Astin for this, which is obviously perfect 80’s casting. And Eleven! ELEVEN!

If I had a negative–and I’ll admit there wasn’t much of one–my initial reaction to seeing Jonathan was this: Oh, right. So you still exist. *sigh*

But honestly, there’s so much awesome here that I’m pretty sure I can deal with Jonathan. And hey, there’s always the chance that he gets eaten by a monster!

Westworld

Nice little teaser. Atmospheric. Violent. Solid music choice.

I don’t have too much else to say about this except that I’m interested, and for the love of God can we find Elsie yet? (Preferably alive, but I suppose I’ll take confirmation of her dead body, too.)

Voltron: Legendary Defender

VOLTRON! While I’m extremely bummed to hear that Season 3 is only 7 episodes, I’m ecstatic to hear Season 4 is coming out in October. So. Okay. I can handle this.

I’m pretty into this trailer. (Definitely more, anyway, than I was into that weird leaked footage or whatever that came out a month or two ago.) I’m happy to see that we haven’t just skipped ahead to a time where Voltron is up and running again, like, I definitely want to deal with Shiro’s disappearance, not just easily replace him and move on until he’s found. Hopefully found? I’m interested in seeing what the team dynamic is like without Shiro: like, there ought to be changes, not just a single scene of Keith angst–although I’m all on board for the Keith angst. Still, I don’t want Shiro to permanently vanish. I like Shiro!

Anyway. I’m jazzed. Less than two weeks to go!

Bright

I’m interested in this. I don’t know if I’m quite as sold as the rest of the internet, and the words “from the director of Suicide Squad” make me shudder just a bit, but a cop movie with orcs and elves and fairies and Will Smith? I mean, how could I not be at least a little interested?

Also: Toyota Corolla. Yes.

Star Trek: Discovery

I feel like every Discovery trailer leaves me feeling pretty iffy, and this one is no exception. Some of it looks interesting: casting, some nice shots. But the trailers still aren’t grabbing me intellectually or emotionally yet, and I really wish I could shake off all the ‘doomed Captain Michelle Yeoh’ vibes I seem to be getting.

Mostly, I have no new thoughts here other than disappointment that Jason Isaacs has an American accent for no good reason I can tell. Also, it’s been officially released that our hero Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green) is Sarek and Amanda’s adopted daughter, and while the creators have promised that there’s a great, non-continuity-breaking explanation for that, I’m raising an extremely skeptical eyebrow here.

Come on, people. Haven’t we already deja-ed this vu? Have we not already learned our lesson that giving Spock a sibling that no one’s bothered to mention for decades is a really lousy idea?

Riverdale

Okay, I had my problems with this show by the end of the season, but I absolutely have to check out Season Two now. Oh my God. The melodrama. I laughed so hard at this one line. I’m not even going to tell you the line. I think you’ll know it when you hear it.

I’ll admit to some confusion: I thought Cheryl’s Evil Mom made it out of the fire unscathed? Maybe I’m remembering wrong? Or maybe she ran back into the burning house for some reason? (Perhaps to save Spooky Granny, who was the one I actually thought might have burned alive?) Either way, what matters it that Cheryl is as charmingly disturbing as ever. I appreciate this.

Also worth a mention: do they not have ambulances in Riverdale? Or was it actually quicker for Archie to pick up his bleeding and bullet-ridden father and haul him to that hospital from the 1950’s? Oh, Riverdale, and you’re amazingly outdated town aesthetics. On a positive note, I’ve discovered that my interest in Archie himself has picked up a bit, now that he’s possibly keeping dark secrets and there’s nary a hint of an acoustic guitar in sight. Maybe we can keep that up?

Supergirl

Meh. I mean, I’m still going to watch it. I think S2 was definitely an improvement on S1, but this trailer does so little for me. Normally I’m all about the weird, strange dichotomy between superhero and alter ego, but Kara acting like the decision she made to choose duty over love is an essentially alien choice, and how her whole life as a human has been a lie and angst angst blah blah, just, nope, not here for that. Besides, if two seasons have taught me nothing else, it’s that when Kara gets angsty about something, it usually means she reacts like a snappish 13-year-old, and it’s literally my least favorite thing about the show.

On the upside, I perked up considerably when Adrian Pasdar appeared.

Legends of Tomorrow

This looks like considerably more fun, although some of the footage is old, and I had to roll my eyes a little at the line “Rip has been hiding something from us,” because, like, of course he has. That’s basically what Rip does. (Also, Victor Garber’s Titanic joke, which made Mek laugh and made me go, “Oh, you assholes.” Although we both agree with the sentiment: never, ever step foot on the Titanic.)

I am, however, into Billy Zane and all the circus stuff. And “DIE, CLOWN” definitely cracked me up. Is that a band name? It oughta be a band name.

The Flash

Aaaaaand back to the angst, although I’m actually a little more interested in this particular angst. Seeing the dichotomy between how Iris and Cisco are coping without Barry is kind of fascinating, and makes me wish that Barry was going to be gone for longer than an episode, which I seriously doubt. I love that Iris seems to be leading Team Flash, and I find myself desperately hoping she won’t just disappear on the sidelines when BA returns. I really shouldn’t let myself hope that hard.

I’m . . . okay that Caitlin appears to be on Team Flash again, but I need the show to actually address her dual nature, not just act like everything’s okay again. Cause, like, Jesus, that was one of the only things I praised about the goddamn finale. I’m also pretty bummed that her hair is brown again (c’mon, her Killer Frost look was the best!) and that Tom Felton is apparently leaving the show. That’s disappointing. I liked Julian, and if he’s not going to be around, I really need Caitlin to just be single for a year.

Arrow

Bleh. Not really feeling it.

Considering the nature of last season’s cliffhanger, I’m not surprised about how little we see from most of the cast. (Other than Black Canary, who apparently does survive.) Unfortunately, that means half this trailer is just summarizing the season finale, and the other half is all about Oliver’s relationship with his son. What’s interesting to me about this is that I probably could’ve been okay with William as a recurring character earlier, like Dad + Mayor + Vigilante could have been interesting to see if they balanced it right. But if their whole relationship is just gonna be William, like, semi-brainwashed and blaming Oliver for everything, up to and possibly including his mom’s death? Yeah, I’m not really up for that.

Inhumans

This trailer looks a little better than the first one. Unfortunately, Medusa’s already terrible wig somehow looks even worse in motion. The effects here are pretty awful, and this isn’t some low budget show on TNT or Syfy. I’m not forgiving that crap.

I want to be interested in this. I like superheroes. (Obviously, considering how many superhero trailers I just talked about.) I like Ken Leung and Iwan Rheon. There’s a giant dog. I’m excited about a hero who only speaks through alien sign language. Unfortunately, said hero is coming off awfully blah to me thus far. Rheon appears to be disappointingly typecast, like, I kind of wish he was playing Black Bolt instead. (Or if they actually got a deaf actor, maybe? I don’t know that much about Black Bolt, but couldn’t they use a computer generated voice for the few times he has to speak and kill people?) And I’m still not sure if the show is connecting to Agents of SHIELD, even though AoS is where we were introduced to the Inhumans in the first place. (Agents of SHIELD, man. They’ve been so screwed over by Marvel.)

Finally, Teen Wolf

This trailer isn’t from Comic Con. The season premiere is airing this Sunday, and I decided not to watch any more new footage before then. But I figured I’d post this trailer I saw a couple weeks ago, since it did manage to reignite my interest, what with Stiles and Derek and Jackson and everyone else who isn’t Danny coming back again. (Poor Danny. We’ll never know what happened to you, will we?)

The idea that all the humans are going to be, like, infected with fear or something and turn on all the supernatural folk is kind of fun. My obsession with the show has seriously waned after the last disappointing season, so I’m glad that this trailer has managed to grab me again. Cause, like. Final season. I have to finish it.

But people. I am not here for what appears to be a steamy Scott/Malia hookup in the shower scene. No. Don’t do this, show, not in the last season. Don’t be the Chakotay and Seven of Nine of MTV.

Be a dream sequence, or there will be fierce-if-relatively-impotent disapproval.

ETA: Apparently, they’ve chosen to be the Chakotay and Seven of Nine of MTV. Goddamn it, show.

Season Premiere Round-Up: September 6th-September 29th

So, the 2016-2017 Fall TV Season has begun. Lots of new and returning shows have already started, and I haven’t watched even half of them, because it’s been a bit busy for me lately, and also because I didn’t want to. Still, I’ve checked out about five shows so far. Here are my general impressions:

DISCLAIMERS: MILD TO SERIOUS SPOILERS INVOLVED. DO NOT READ IF YOU HAVEN’T YET WATCHED. THIS MEANS YOU, MEKAELA ST. GEORGE.

Atlanta

atlanta

I have to catch up on this show (we’re like six episodes in or something?) but I just watched the first two, and so far I’m liking it. I find that I have to crank up my volume like I’m listening to Comedy Central, or British people, but other than that, it’s interesting.

There are far, far better people than a white girl from small town California to talk about why this show is important, and have, so I’m not going to try. What I will say is that I generally find the characters likable or interesting, which is especially helpful in Earn’s case, since male protagonists who are always asking their parents for money and not helping ladies out much on the rent . . . not typically my favorite. But nobody does anything so horrible I can’t stand them; actually, I like all three main characters quite a bit. Paper Boi has some nice scenes, and of course Keith Stanfield is pretty hilarious. There are a lot of moments of quiet humor and a fair amount of WTF humor, too. I do find myself hoping that Earn’s girlfriend will get to do something other than, you know, be a girlfriend. Like, it’d be nice for her to have a storyline that didn’t entirely revolve around wanting Earn to make money or get out, especially because the show’s feeling a bit dude heavy for my tastes at the moment.

Atlanta is, as everyone and their mothers have said, a tonally strange show, bouncing seamlessly between scenes of, say, stoner humor and very abrupt, difficult-to-watch scenes of police brutality. It doesn’t quite feel like anything else on TV, and that, along with a soft spot for Donald Glover, makes me think I’ll probably watch it at least a full season, if not more.

GRADE: 

B+

The Good Place

good-place

So, that was fun. I went back and forth on if I wanted to check this show out or not, but a good review on io9, my love for Kristen Bell, and a need for a little bit of levity in my life tipped me towards the Check It Out side, and I’m glad I did. I’m not sure I’m going to keep up with it forever–I worry that it will become a bit repetitive–but I’d like to try for now. I laughed out loud a lot, even at some of the moments I knew were coming, and that’s always a big plus. I’m trying to remember which jokes made me laugh the hardest: the dog, certainly, was up there. Also, Kristen Bell’s offhand line about the purse, the reminder that Africa is a continent, not a country, and Michael’s clear inability to understand the mass appeal of froyo.

William Jackson Harper is an awesome straight man, and he and Kristen Bell have great chemistry, like, that’s half the show right there. Ted Danson is also a lot of fun, and I pretty much adore D’Arcy Carden as Janet. Also, I didn’t expect the cracktastic karmic consequences for whenever Eleanor screws up, and I’m excited that there’s a bit of a mystery involved, too. Who knows that Eleanor doesn’t belong there? Will we meet God (or whoever) at some point? And what exactly is God’s criteria system, like, I’m pretty interested in what’s going on behind the scenes when Florence Nightingale didn’t merit a spot in the Good Place, but someone like Tahani–who is all charitable action with somewhat questionable intent–did.

There’s possible room to grow here. If the show does, and continues highlighting the Eleanor/Chidi dynamic duo, I could definitely enjoy it.

GRADE:

B+

Agents of SHIELD

aos

So, I’m partially invested in this. Theoretically, I like the idea of breaking up the team: it adds a layer of complication, giving our players secrets and hidden alliances that could be kind of interesting. It also shifts around the power dynamic, like, I’m into Jemma having a bigger position of power than either May or even Coulson in some respects. At the same time, though, I already miss the team, you know, as a team, and the idea of a whole season getting the band back together sounds vaguely exhausting. I’m also a little less interested in Daisy being the vigilante, even though her scenes aren’t bad, and I’m not a Daisy hater by any means. I just would have been more interested if virtually any other character had been playing it solo. I kind of think a Daisy-lite season might do the show some good, although in fairness to AoS, it’s looking like everyone’s going to have stuff to do.

On a more positive note: Ghost Rider is potentially interesting (although the scene with the brother and the surge of inspirational music that followed didn’t quite work for me), I’m totally into the Life Model Decoy (and hey, it’s Madalena from Galavant! YAY!), I’m excited to see that Yo-Yo’s back (YO-YO!), and OOOOH, May has apparently contracted the weird ghost sickness. See, now that I’m fully invested in.

GRADE:

B

How To Get Away With Murder

htgawm

After an occasionally awesome but somewhat shaky second season, I’d say “We’re Good People Now” is relatively solid ‘B’ fun, with some drama that I don’t care about and one damn sweet hook. The worst part, easily, was that beginning; please tell me that there are other people out there besides me and my sister who watched that whole Scream Our Fury Into The Night Sky scene and laughed their asses off. I mean, I get the idea, and those kind of moments can totally work, but boy, did I not buy it here, like, at all.

Also, any Wes/Laurel drama is automatically a snoozefest on every level. I am very definitively not a shipper because Laurel is far too interesting for him, and besides, Wes’s whole “I can’t talk to you because when I look at you, all I see is your shitty ex-boyfriend” thing, I mean, that’s such total bullshit. (Don’t get me wrong; Laurel will probably still end up being involved with Frank somehow because TWISTS, but at this point, for all Wes knows? Yeah, this is a shitty way to treat her.) Oh, and new douchebag student guy? Can he die, like, super quickly? I am deeply not interested in spending any time with this guy.

Let’s see, what else . . . oh, right, my favorite goddamn ship has broken up. This is not my happy face, show. Actually, I find that I’m not quite as upset as I thought I’d be, mostly because I don’t think this is the end of Oliver/Connor at all. Also, I’ve gotta say . . . look, Oliver’s totally right that Connor’s reaction (or lack thereof) is just completely wrong and may not say necessarily great things about their relationship–but then, that’s why you go to counseling or something. What you don’t do is make Connor’s saintlike reaction to your pretty atrocious treachery somehow all about you and not understanding who you are as a person anymore and so you have to break up so you can rediscover yourself on your own because, seriously, WHAT?

Away from that total nonsense. I genuinely like that after a year of murder and hacking up bodies and shootings and framings and everything else you could possibly imagine, the Keating Five aren’t actually doing so hot in school, like, that makes complete sense. I enjoyed seeing Annalise visiting everyone over the summer, and also the show getting back to its initial procedural format. I think it actually needs that along with the twisty soapy murdery goodness. It was also pretty hilarious to see Nate giving Annalise a foot rub because–shamelessly, utterly shamelessly–he’s shirtless as he’s doing so; thus we witness a few of Billy Brown’s 680 ridiculously sculpted muscles actually moving as he rubs her feet.

But of course this episode’s really all about those last few minutes and our new mystery: WHO IS DEAD? Like I said before, it’s a pretty great hook, especially since every episode we’ll be eliminating at least one person who isn’t dead. (If Connor or Oliver die, I walk, people.) If you take the scene at face value, then the most likely people are Bonnie, Wes, or Nate, based on Annalise’s grief-stricken reaction. But since anyone who’s still watching this show in the third season knows not to take shit at face value . . . it really could be anyone because, for all we know, Annalise killed them herself and is just putting on a big show for the cops. (Currently, I’m putting early money on Frank dying after somehow managing to impossibly redeem himself to Annalise over the course of the season, but early money isn’t much, like, I’m wagering maybe four pennies here.)

Finally, two more important things to note: a) Meggy is adorable, so either she’s secretly evil or she’s gonna die, and b) Frank shaved his beard and head. NOOOOOOOOOO.

GRADE:

B

Lethal Weapon

lw

Here’s another show I was on the fence about checking out. But I finally did, and it’s . . . okay? Should we pro/con/whatever it?

PRO:

Clayne Crawford is actually pretty good as Riggs. I especially like some of his quieter, matter-of-fact moments later on in the episode. Right now, at least, I think his performance is carrying the show. (He and Damon Wayans also have decent enough chemistry, though, which helps.)

CON:

Still, when my spellcheck tried to make ‘Clayne’ ‘Claire’ and I thought to myself, man, how awesome would it have been to have seen Marti Riggs instead? Yeah, I’m still bummed we didn’t get it. Cause the thing is Lethal Weapon isn’t anything new or fresh, and while the women thus far are at least likable–I enjoy Murtaugh’s wife, and Jordana Brewster’s counselor appears so far to be playing a more effective and less overtly antagonistic version of Mary Ellen Trainor’s original character–they also don’t have much to do. (Besides, Brewster will probably just end up Riggs’s love interest, anyway.) A gender-flipped version of this show could at least have been interesting.

CON:

Especially since they only double down on the Refrigerated Wife backstory by adding a dead unborn baby, too. Sigh.

WHATEVER:

While it’s nice to see someone who isn’t freaking out at the first hint of a contraction, woman, call yourself a cab, Jesus. Seriously, ladies, this is your public service announcement from someone who totally isn’t a medical professional but works around a lot of them: if you think you are going into active labor, PLEASE don’t drive yourself to the hospital because this is not safe, and also because if you can drive more than three minutes to the hospital without having debilitating contractions, you very possibly aren’t far enough along yet to be coming to the hospital anyway. (Well, okay, women whose water has broken still need to come in regardless of whether they’re having contractions or not–but never mind, you get the point. In general, call a friend, an ambulance, or Uber, okay?)

CON:

I am tired of seeing the same accident over and over and over, TV. Anytime I see a driver’s profile, I just sit back and start counting seconds until a truck comes through and T-bones them.

WHATEVER:

Bad guys are killed like crazy in this show. Like, no one cares even a little bit about offing criminals, so long as car races aren’t interrupted and the city doesn’t suffer too much financial damage. (Seriously, the Grand Prix scene is more than a little silly, and I could easily have done without it.)

PRO:

Hey, I forgot Kevin Rahm is in this! And he has a pocket square! Man, I haven’t seen that guy in forever.

WHATEVER:

Murtaugh is like the most oblivious person ever and probably shouldn’t be a detective. How is he the only person at the dinner table to miss out on the obvious clues that Riggs’s wife is dead? Good Lord, Murtaugh.

WHATEVER:

Instead of just being old, Murtaugh is going back to work after suffering a heart attack and open heart surgery. I feel like they’re just going to use that as an easy joke, as it’s mostly treated comedically here, but this actually has real potential to be a serious ongoing storyline, like, Murtaugh being afraid to die is a perfectly valid thing. Since most of the pathos goes to Riggs, this could be an interesting thing for his partner to explore. Instead, I suspect Murtaugh will mostly have serious drama whenever one of his family members inevitably ends up in danger.

PRO:

The clear MVP of this story is not Murtaugh or even Riggs but Murtaugh’s ridiculously cute baby girl. She is the most adorable thing ever and needs to be featured in every single episode. Make it happen, Fox.

GRADE:

B