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It Is All Connected

Monday Musings: It Is All Connected

Monday Musing: It Is All Connected

During Phase One of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), S.H.I.E.L.D. featured in the storylines. Nick Fury appearing in several of the movies. Natasha Romanoff was a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent working undercover at Stark Industries. Phil Coulson dealt with Tony Stark in both Iron Man movies and S.H.I.E.L.D. tried to secure Mjolnir in Thor. It was it was the presence of the S.H.I.E.L.D. organisation that linked the movies.


During the first season of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., the Marvel movies affect the storylines. They cleaned up the mess in Greenwich after Thor: Dark World. The whole organisation collapsed after Captain America: Winter Soldier. Also, Nick Fury saved Fitz and Simmons in the season finale. There is no denying there was an association between the television programme and the movies.

The second season of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has linked to the Agent Carter TV show but had fewer links to the MCU movies. The movies never mention the characters from Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. At the start of Avengers: Age of Ultron, the Avengers are working for S.H.I.E.L.D. hunting down HYDRA weapons. As Phil Coulson is still working for S.H.I.E.L.D. at the time, does that mean they know he is alive? Why do they not address this plot hole?

In the later seasons of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., the link is barely there. There is an appearance by Lady Sif. A newspaper headline mentioning Peggy Carter’s funeral in one episode. Later, several “Inhumans” signed the Sovokvia Accords. Now, the show operators almost separately from the movies.

I felt there were opportunities for crossovers. When writing the Sovokvia Accords, it must have included S.H.I.E.L.D. Why were they not mentioned? Likewise, S.H.I.E.L.D. agents must have helped with the closing The Avengers Tower in Spider-Man: Homecoming. Why didn’t Coulson have a guest appearance then? It will be interesting to see what happens post-Infinity War. Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has yet to be renewed for another series. Will the organisation end after this season and the events of Avenger: Infinity War? I can’t wait to find out.

The Defenders

As for Netflix/Marvel TV shows or The Defenders, there is a very loose link to the MCU movies (and other TV shows). It appears more as in passing in conversations, mentioning one of The Avengers or the “Battle of New York”. In the Daredevil, they manage to get reduced rent on their new office because of the incident. Or in Luke Cage, a man selling bootleg copies of the battle on DVD.

But I wonder why they haven’t linked the shows more. Whilst they don’t have to include the S.H.I.E.L.D. agents we know. They could have included someone from the organisation. From the end of the first Captain America movie, we know there is a S.H.I.E.L.D. base in New York. I am sure agents would have investigated a giant hole appearing in Midland Circle. Or at least wanted to question Jessica Jones or Luke Cage after their arrests. Why was this never explored?

In the Netflix/Marvel shows, they are hinting moving towards a Luke Cage and Iron Fist partnership. As seen in the Heroes for Hire comic books. How about a Punisher and Ghost Rider collaboration? This would be a great way to link the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. programme to Netflix programmes.

Similarly, I would love to see Avengers interact with The Defenders. Spider-Man is the obvious character to do the crossover from the movies to television shows. From the comics, he has ties most of The Defenders. Now personally, I like to think of Spider-Man as more a street-level hero. I loved the 1990’s cartoon, one of my favourite storylines was whilst he was working with Daredevil to take down Kingpin. How amazing would this be to see in live action?

Of course, I haven’t even mentioned The Runaways or Inhumans series (because I am not up to date with these programmes). As for the new upcoming shows link Cloak & Dagger. I have no idea if they have connections to the larger MCU, be it movies or television programmes.

The Future?

So what about the future? As I said Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. might not be renewed for another series. Rumour has it Phil Coulson will be appearing in the new Captain Marvel film. As I understand, this film is set in the 1990’s, so a prequel to the stories we know. But will it relate to the programmes? As the movie will also include the Kree, who are in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Will the movie explain where the alien involved in the T.A.H.I.T.I. project came from?

There is no doubt everything is going to be shaken up by Avengers Infinity Wars. The future of the MCU will be very different to the universe we know and love. I am wondering if this shake-up will link the programmes to the movies more or less? Or if the future will be a blank slate to continue the programmes without referencing the movies.

What do you think? Do you like that the Marvel programmes are connected? Do you wish they were more connected? Or do you think they should be separated? Let me know in the comments below.

Recommended Reading

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Monday Musings -Batgirl Revisited

Monday Musings - Batgirl Movie

Last year, I wrote about the upcoming Batgirl movie. I spoke about how happy I was that Joss Whedon had signed on as the director. And examined some of the storylines I would like to have seen included in the movie. I posted this before Whedon’s ex-wife published her open letter. My post was also written before I had seen experienced seeing the Amazons, Valkyrie and Dora Milaje on the big screen. My opinions have obviously changed since writing the blog post.

Last week, news broke that Whedon had walked away from the project. Initial articles stated he was “unable to find a story” Of course, this is ridiculous. Over the years many comic book storylines have featured Batgirl. Anyone one of which could be adapted into a feature film.

The news instead seems to point to yet more problems in with the DCEU franchise. The success of the Wonder Woman movies last year was a high point for the franchise. However, the Justice League movie (which Whedon worked on), was meet with mixed reviews, was a low point.

According to Wikipedia, there are over twenty possible films planned in the DCEU. Whilst some like the Wonder Woman sequel and Shazam movie, have tentative release dates. Over a dozen more are all in the planning stages. These include a Gotham Siren adaption, Flashpoint and The Batman reboot. Production on the Batgirl movie was due to start later this year. I’m assuming this will still happen. The success of Wonder Woman, shows audience want to see female lead superhero movies. Batgirl is one of the best know DC women, along with Supergirl she is the obvious choice for a next movie.

All over the weekend, I have seen several blog posts featuring lists of “female directors who should direct the Batgirl movie.” I am not going to re-hash them here (but have included a few of the links at the end of this blog post). I will go on record as saying I am hoping Lena Dunham isn’t involved in the project, I am not a fan of her work.

Batgirl (New 52)

On Twitter, several authors expressed an interest in the project. Of course, we would all love to see Gail Simone write this movie, most comic book fans are familiar with her work. The New 52 reboot of Batgirl, with Barbara Gordon, once again redonning the cape and cowl. Is one of the more popular storylines and, is the obvious choice for the film. Similarly, I would love to see Hope Larson work on the movie. As the current writer of the Batgirl comics she is someone very familiar with the character, and personally, I love the ‘Summer of Lies‘ storyline.

Batgirl Summer of Lies

Whilst it looks like the movie is still moving forward, which of course I am happy about. I do still have so many issues around its place with the DCEU as a whole. The Wonder Woman movie could exist outside of the franchise. Her storyline is not intertwined with other characters from the DCEU. Yes, there was the package from Bruce Wayne at the beginning, which served as a plot point. But she could have just as easily found the photo herself.

Batgirl’s origin story includes Batman. In both versions, young Batman intrigues the young Barbara Gordon. Originally, in the Detective Comics (which was later retold in Year One), she idolized Batman and Robin and saves them from Killer Moth. In the New 52 storylines, Batman is an important part of the plot.

Which leads me to my problem. Can this movie work whilst the DCEU is a mess? Ben Affleck has expressed an interest in leaving the franchise. And the standalone Batman movie is on hold. Can they make a Batgirl movie with a new Batman, will that work? Should this movie be made after the new Batman reboot? Or will the Flashpoint storyline reboot the franchise, so recasting a new Batman would be possible.

Overall, I am happy Joss Whedon has left the Batgirl projects. I am excited to see a female director making another superhero movie and the possibility of a female writer. However, as with all projects in the DCEU at the moment, this news has left with more questions than answers.

Recommended Reading

9 Rad Women We’d Love To See Director Batgirl (Nerdist)
10 Female Directors Who Could Take on DC’s ‘Batgirl’ Movie (comicbook.com)
Batgirl: Year One
Batgirl: The Darkest Reflection TP (The New 52)
Batgirl: Summer of Lies

This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I will earn a commission. You will not pay more when buying a product through my link.

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Monday Musings: Confession Time

Monday Musings: Confession Time
Normally, my Monday Musing posts are a chance for me to have a little rant about something that’s been on my mind lately. This week I am I’m going to do something a little different. I am going to make a confession. Are you ready?

It’s a big confession.

I have never watched Supernatural.

Wait a minute, what?

That’s right, I have never watched Supernatural! I have never seen an episode, this show seemed to have slipped past my geek radar.  I know what you are thinking, Supernatural is one of the greatest shows, how have you never seen it. The honest truth is I am not 100% sure why.

Before Supernatural aired, I remember thinking it would be a show I would like. I loved the other CW programmes shown at the time. Programmes like Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Roswell. Jared Padalecki starred in the Gilmore Girls and Jensen Ackles was briefly in Smallville. Two shows I also loved around the time. So why didn’t I watch their new show?

As I said I have no idea why I didn’t watch it. Supernatural originally aired on ITV2 in the late evening. So maybe the time it aired had something to do with me not watching it. Since then it has changed networks several times, for a while, I think it was on Sky Living and it’s on E4.

I am assuming because Supernatural has had several broadcasters in the UK, that is why no one channel can repeat all the series. Similarly, why isn’t available on a streaming service. Whilst, Buffy the Vampire Slayer (and it’s spin-off Angel), seem to have found new fans by streaming on Netflix. Other “Monster of the Week” type shows, like Charmed or Ghost Whisperer seem to be constantly on TV. Why isn’t Supernatural?

Not being on a streaming service means it is not easy for me to watch Supernatural. So it seems my only option is to watch it the old-fashioned way, to buy all the box sets and binge-watch them. Which brings me to another issue. By now Supernatural is on its 13th season. That is over 250 episode to watch! That will involve a mammoth marathon, how long would that take? It seems a little daunting to even start.

So it would seem I am not meant to watch Supernatural. Even though I am sure, it would be a show I would enjoy. Having said that I am planning on trying to watch the spin-off programme The Wayward Sisters. I am hoping it isn’t too linked to Supernatural and I can enjoy this programme in its own right.

Are you surprised I am not part of the SPN family? Do you think I should start watching it? What TV show are people surprised that you don’t watch?

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Monday Musing: Agatha Christie

Monday MusingAfter the Murder on the Orient Express trailer appeared online last week, I discovered a group of fellow Agatha Christie fans on Twitter, all excited about the movie.  I’m not going to focus on the trailer too much.  Just to say, the setting looks amazing, the cast is epic. Personally, I am just not sure I can accept anyone other than David Suchet in the role of Hercule Poirot, but we will see. Inspired by a conversation I had with Cuteek, I thought I would, tell you why you should become an Agatha Christie fan!

Geeks Guide to Agatha Christie

You might think Agatha Christie are old boring novels and period dramas. Not really a thing for geeks, well I am here convince you otherwise! Several of Christie’s novels have computer game versions. There is even an anime series based on some of the characters. Christie’s own life also included a mystery, her disappearance in 1926. Which featured in the Doctor Who episode “The Unicorn and The Wasp.”

Agatha Christie Statue

Most people will know the TV adaptations of Christie’s work. The most famous adaptations are the BBC version of Miss Marple with Joan Hickson, which serialised all 12 Miss Marple stories. Next is the ITV version Poirot, with David Suchet in the lead role. They adapted all 70 of books and short stories featuring the detective over the 13 season.  As both these adaptation series stay true to the source material, I would highly recommend them.

It is worth noting with all the adaptations Christie’s work is often altered. The classic Murder at the Gallop is a re-telling of Death after the Funeral. Changing the protagonist from Marple for Poirot. The ITV remakes of Marple, updates a lot of the story for modern audiences. These adaptations also take other classic Christie novels and insert Marple into the storyline. The Murder is Easy or The Sittaford Mystery episodes do this. Other times, a Christie story is reworked into a new story. Noteworthy is the 2003 film Identity,  this psychological thriller is a re-telling of And Then There Were None.

In these TV series many “geeky” actors appear. Three episodes that are worth watching are the Marple version of Murder is Easy, featuring Benedict Cumberbatch. The Poirot episodes to look out for are, Wasp Nest, which stars a very young Peter Capaldi and Death after the Funeral featuring Micheal Fassbender.

Do you like Agatha Christie? What is you favourite book? Are you looking forward to the movie? I’d love to hear your comments.

Recommending Reading

This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I will earn a commission. You will not pay more when buying a product through my link.

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Monday Musings: Batgirl

Monday Musings: Batgirl

I had planned to stop writing about the DCEU for a while. My Monday Musings have all involved this franschise and I wanted to talk about something a little more personal. However the news that Joss Whedon was going to write and direct a stand alone Batgirl movie changed all that. Over the weekend, I had seen several articles about the Batgirl movie, arguments for and against Joss Whedon directing. Ideas for possible storylines and dream casting ideas. So here we are again, another Monday and another Musing about the DCEU.

Everyone is assuming the Batgirl movie will be about Barbara Gordon, most people associate her with Batgirl. I am guessing this is correct as it might be confusing for audiences to suddenly introduce Cassandra Cain or Stephanie Brown as Batgirl. Unlike Wonder Woman, there have been several live action versions of Batgirl onscreen. Most iconic is Yvonne Craig’s version from the 1960’s TV programme. Then the awful version from the 1997 Batman and Robin movie. Finally, a post Killing Joke version of Barbara Gordon in the short-lived Birds of Prey TV programme.

If I had to pick a dream writer/director for a Batgirl movie, Joss Whedon would be high on my list. He has created some of my favourite TV programmes, he creates interesting characters, as well as included numerous strong women. His filmography is extremely varied, vampire shows, a space western, a musical series and a Shakespeare adaption. He has written comics for Marvel and directed two films for the MCU. Joss Whedon can do Batgirl justice.

Joss Whedon is so much more than just the director of The Avengers films but it is hard not to mention them when talking about him. The first Avengers film, helped create the MCU as one entity, elevating these films into some different. For me the highlight of these films was his interpretation of Black Widow. Whilst, Black Widow first appeared in Iron Man 2, it was in The Avengers that her character became more interesting. There has been criticism of her storyline in Age of Ultron, but for me she still a fascinating character.

What I would like to see?

Originally, I had hoped Barbara Gordon would be introduced into the Arrowverse. As I mentioned before I like the DC television programmes, I would have liked to see a Batgirl programme added to this franchise. Arrow has already introduced Black Canary and Huntress. I imagined taking these characters and adding them to a Batgirl and Birds of Prey TV Show. But a feature film, would be incredible.

As for the storyline, it is unclear where in Batman’s timeline the DCEU is taking place, yes he appears to be an older version of Bruce Wayne. In Suicide Squad they hinted that the Joker had killed a Robin (assuming Jason Todd). So I am guessing around three years into Batman’s career, around the time of Killing Joke. Of course, the Batgirl film could be set out of the timeline and be an origins story.

If they are adapting an existing storyline from the comics, I would like to see Year One, up until to Killing Joke. I hated the animated version of Killing Joke, but I still believe it is one of the best Batman storylines and I would like to see it a decent adaption. Whilst leaving the heroine paralysed might not be an ideal ending. The end of Batman vs Superman shows the DCEU aren’t affraid to take risks.

Batgirl (New 52)

Another option could be the new 52 storyline of The Darkest Reflection. A post Killing Joke version of Batgirl, still traumatized by her attack, but trying to find her place back in the Bat-family. This could be darker, more like the Jessica Jones TV show, making the character more interesting than the comical version of Batgirl from the previous Batman movie franchise.

What do you think about the news of Joss Whedon directing the Batgirl movie? What storyline would you like to see in the film? Do you have any ideas who should play Batgirl?

Recommended Reading

Is Joss Whedon the Right Choice (CBR article)
Is Joss Whedon the Wrong Choice (CBR article)
Fan Cast for Batgirl (Nerdist News)
Batgirl: Year One
Batgirl: The Darkest Reflection TP (The New 52)

This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I will earn a commission. You will not pay more when buying a product through my link.

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Monday Musing: Wonder Woman

Monday Musings: Wonder Woman

With the release of the Wonder Woman trailer this weekend, I thought I would continue my Monday Musings series by talking about women in the DCEU. As I said last Monday, I want to like the films of DCEU but I am not sure why they have separate movie and TV franchises. Saying that one area the DCEU could shine is by introducing more female heroes to the roster.

Studio Bosses will have us belief there isn’t a market for a female lead superhero movies. The box office failure of Catwoman or Elektra does back up their claims. Even when female heroes are part of ensemble.  The merchandise does not include them. Which Disney did with both Black Widow (The Avengers) and Rey (The Force Awakens). DC Comics have done a lot to rectify the merchandise issue; a lot of the movie tie-in products for Suicide Squad featured Harley Quinn. Not to mention all the DC Superhero Girls merchandise (I adore the Lego sets).

The Wonder Woman movie will be the first major female superhero movie over a decade. A lot rides on this movie. There is no denying Wonder Woman was the most memorable character in Batman vs Superman. The new trailer looks amazing, it leaves you wanting to see more fight scenes but also more of Diana’s interacting with Etta Candy and Steve Nelson. Am I the only one who already loves Etta?

Wonder Woman’s Origins

Wonder Woman Rebirth

The newest “Origins” trailer has also created some interesting discussions with me and my muggle friends. I realised no one really knew that much about Wonder Woman. Whilst most of them knew she was an Amazonian princess, they did not know about her parents or the change to her origin story in New 52. One friend even though her alter ego was Linda Carter, not Diana Prince!

Everyone knows the origins of Batman or Superman and their alter egos. I was concerned why my friends knew so little about Wonder Woman? They also knew very little about Batgirl, but I will save that for another blog post. So why is so little know about The Amazonian princess? I believe it is because Wonder Woman has not been on-screen.

Since the 1970’s TV series, she has only featured in the cartoons. She was a character in the Justice League series and movies. As well as having a standalone animated movie. There have been rumours of her character guest starring on an existing TV show, like Smallville and even an un-aired pilot. Yet we didn’t see Wonder Woman in a live action role or movie for over 30 years, why is that?

I know it sounds like I am complaining, as things are changing. After all Wonder Woman will feature in two movies this year. Both her own standalone movie and the Justice League movie in November. I am just concerned that a generation have grown up without having Wonder Woman (or any other DC female heroes) as part of their pop culture.

The DCEU can change this; the announcement of the Gotham City Sirens, although billed as the Harley Quinn standalone movie will also include Catwoman and Poison Ivy. But why stop there; personally I’d love to see a movie centred around Batgirl or the Birds of Prey. Which DC Comics female characters would you like to see in the big screen?

Recommended Watching/Reading

This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I will earn a commission. You will not pay more when buying a product through my link.

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Monday Musings… DCEU

Monday Musings: DCEU

I thought I would start a new semi-regular series on my blog, My Monday Musings. That roughly translate to if something geeky has been on my mind lately I will blog about it! This week I want to talk about the DC Extended Universe (DCEU).

I grew up loving DC Comics! In the 1980’s I watched repeats of Wonder Woman and Batman programmes on TV, and the Superman/Supergirl movies on VHS. A decade lately, and it would become all about Batman, the Tim Burton movies, The Animated Series and The Dark Knight Returns graphic novel. (My love of Marvel did not start until this century). But in the last few years, my love for DC has waned.

The comics continue to interest me, I loved the Batgirl of Burnside storyline and adore all the extended Bat-family. However, after the Christopher Nolan films, the DC movies seems to be a mess. I’m not currently up to date with the animated series. But  stated before how disappointed I was with the The Killing Joke animated movie.

DC on TV

Of the DC Comics related TV programmes, my favourite was Smallville, but recently all DC Comic shows seem to be dominated by the programmes of the Arrowverse. I didn’t like the first few seasons of Arrow, however, I think the show has improved recently. I really like Supergirl and Flash. Supergirl has dealt with some interesting themes this season and handles them amazingly well, especially Alex’s coming out speech.

Legends of Tomorrow is a little more fun, but still enjoyable to watch. At the end of last year they had a crossover storyline for the four shows and I believe they are planning more. This shared universe seems to be successful and is working, to the extend that they are adding to the universe, as the Black Lightening series was announced last week.

The other DC related programme, Gotham is not part of the Arrowverse. The show is a little darker and serves as a great introduction to the major players in the Batman universe. I do not think Gotham will be ever crossover to the Arrowverse, but with the multiverse you never know.

The Extended Universe

DCEU - Justice League

Which brings us back to the DCEU. I want to like the DCEU, I eagerly went to the cinema last year to watch both Batman vs Superman and Suicide Squad and left the cinema disappointed both times. When they release the  Wonder Woman movie, I will go and see it, because it’s a female superhero movie! I really want this cinematic universe to work!

There is no denying there appears to be issues with the DCEU. Every week this year, there is a new rumour about the Batman standalone movie. First the was a completed script, then it is unfinished. Ben Affleck was directing the movie, then he left. After numerous rumours as to who was taking over. Last month they announced Matt Reeves will direct the Batman movie and Chris McKay will direct a Nightwing standalone movie afterwards. Which lead to rumours Affleck would step down after the Batman movie.

What I don’t understand is why, they need to make a Flash movie. I like Grant Gustin as Flash, he has made the role his own. I am sure Erza Miller will be great in the role, do we need another Flash? Likewise with the Justice League movie, the Arrowverse has already laid foundation of the Justice League on screen (it is even part of Legends of Tomorrow), do we need another Justice League?

It is easy to compare the DCEU to that of the more successful Marvel cinematic universe (MCU). But the MCU has existed for over a decade and it did have some hiccups in the early years (Hulk). The MCU has also linked their TV shows to the movies. Agents of Shield and Agent Carter have this done this very directly. Whereas the Netflix/Marvel shows have done it a little more indirectly. Having characters mention of the “Battle of New York” or individual Avengers, link these shows to the wider MCU. Why can the DCEU  not do the same.

Recommended Watching/Reading

This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I will earn a commission. You will not pay more when buying a product through my link.

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