Thursday, August 17, 2006

"Who Wants to Be a Superhero?"

Tonight, I going to use the magic of the Tivo to compose my reactions to "Who Wants to Be a Superhero?" as I watch it in all its couch-arm-gripping glory!

Ah, Major Victory is explaining that they're starting their day as superheroes should: patrolling the city for citizens to be protected and righting wrongs. Wrongs like...

"Sir! That bag does not go with that outfit!"

He further encourages the nonplussed man to consider a more masculine and flattering outfit composed entirely of spandex. I love you, Major Victory.

Creature seems to be continuing her redemption by charming litterbugs into picking up not only their own trash, but others as well. Good for her; all superheroes should have camera crews. Then she bought some clothes and handled them out to the homeless (among whom she can easily pass undetected, I suppose). OOhh! She crossed against a red light! That's a bad example for others, Creature! She's probably just confused and thinks the red light means "time to go to work"...

Feedback nearly fried two women to a crisp with his earnestovision when they tried to *shudder* jaywalk! But he made it okay immediately by offering to escort them to the crosswalk. Good form, FB. And blocking the little children from the display at the Lingerie window? Priceless.

Fat Momma; oh, once you were a Sweet Chocolate Donut of Pure Delight. But now in your every utterance you cover your goodness more and more with the Bitter Sprinkles of Invidiousness that hurt my teeth so. I wonder how your chastising the Parking Enforcement Officer for occupying a loading zone is going to go over with Stan Lee? "Fat Momma, zoopuhheerowz are supposed ta support lawr enforcement officuhs, not hinder them!"

Oh good lord, moonwalking Major Victory just used his cape to help a (no doubt terrified) old lady cross a puddle... The Baby Adam West weeps for joy.

Great Scott! The Dark Enforcer has teleprompted in, and his speech seems to be growing even more incomprehensible as with each appearance he evolves further toward Eric Von Zipperhood. I theorize that his skullbinding snood of sneeriness is hampering his jaw muscles somehow. Either that or the steroids have begun to petrify his maxillofacial hypermusculature.

I just noticed that Stan Lee has a little bust on his desk of ...

himself.

Charming.

Uh-oh. Dark Enforcer says he's been secretly interviewing the superheroes' friends and families looking for dirty secrets, and now he's saying to Stan, "I come here to tell you these beach bums is bums." All I want to know is, how long did it take the families to figure what the heck the Enforcer was gurbling about...?

So what happens what Dark Enforcer "gives dem 'Da Finguh' "...?


So distracting a hottie, in fact, that I had to rewind 4 times and close my eyes before I could actually listen to what he was saying. Major Victory, having repeatedly referred to his stripper past as his motivation, was untouched by Hottie McShoulder's thong-throwing accusations. Oh, and a word to the producers: having Dark "Tom of Finland" Enforcer wave a dollar bill leeringly right after MV says, "Dark Enforcer, you're going down!" was either really really stupid of you or really really brilliant.

Lemuria/Lumeria -- what could be worse in her past than in her present? Ouch; her boozy friend called her trampy bartrash. Well, there's a shock. Thank goodness I was sitting down.

Yuh-oh. MV, FM, and Creature have been called on the carpet...

"Fruit is generally raw." Wow. That's a sentiment I'm going to carry with me. My first thought was, "I can put that on a t-shirt!", but that's really not something you want to wear out to the bars, now, is it?

Time for the next challenge! What's that, Stan? You want them to sit on an inmate's lap, rub their shoulders, stroke their hair, and hug them repeatedly? Jeez, now I want to be a superhero! Come to think of it, I think I rented this movie before... The only thing missing from this little scenario is Hottie McShoulder. Is the part where Dark Enforcer's going to "go down"?

Oh. Oh. They gave Lemuria/Lumeria a female inmate. A huge female inmate. Like, she's not a prisoner of Cell Block H, she is Cell Block H. Like, instead of having an inmate number, they gave her her own zip code.

Ohmigod. I predict whatever's about to happen between Major Victory and Man Mountain Dean is going to be on PornoTube.com tomorrow. DANG! Major Victory pulled it off ... AND he thanked the guy for it.

Wow. Feedback's clever. Cleverer than I thought. Cleverer than his wife's hairdresser, certainly. His stock just rose substantially in my eyes. And now that I know his backstory, I sympathize with him more. I would happily contribute to help pay the bills for his desperately needed twice-a-week psychotherapy.

As for the other person; well. Bye bye.

Oh, and for the record, I do NOT agree with Stan. I'm perfectly fine with Major Victory's inability to keep his clothes on...

Comments:
"Yowzers, Major Victory's ex-co-worker from the stripping business is a hottie!"

Did you expect anything less of Thongman?

And while I do like Feedback, his emotional moment at the end of the episode REALLY unnerved me. I mean, I do think he was being honest and I thought it was great for him, but man his sincerity can really get disturbing at times.
 
I actually regret Creature's departure--but jaywalking is a serious crime, as Feedback can attest!

The blogs are abuzz with claims that the female convict is actually a not utterly obscure character actress...I can't exactly tell if that's her or not, but it follows, since it's apparently illegal to film convicts in California.

As long as our quasi-amateurs thought it was sort of real!
 
The convicts stuff smelled "actor-y" from the get-go. Not that they gave bad performances, it just seemed too perfectly staged. (I know, redundant, right?) Still, I agree with chawunky that the only thing that mattered was Lemuria looking like she was THIS close to soiling her uniform. Stan definitely would have disapproved.
 
It's charming! I would love myself dressed like a superhero too. Maybe I could myself " Bootleg girl". How is that?
 
Yes, sadly, Stan the Man was off last night. I believe in all his cardinal rules of super heroics, but I think, sometimes, in the face of danger (or little old ladies needing to cross a puddle), you have to take off your cape.

In fact, I wouldn't be upset if Major Victory took off more than his cape. ;)

PS - Hottie McShoulder...LOVE IT!
 
"The blogs are abuzz with claims that the female convict is actually a not utterly obscure character actress.."

For pity's sake, of course they were actors. Just like the Lost Girl and the Old Lady With The Dogs and the Doublemint Twins. So what?
 
I tried.

I tried very hard.

I just can't sit through more than 5 minutes of this show.
 
"I think, sometimes, in the face of danger (or little old ladies needing to cross a puddle), you have to take off your cape."

Oh, that whole bit with Stan kvetching about MV's costume was simply necessary to maintain the veneer of dramatic tension; I mean, did anyone really think it was Major Victory who was going to get axed rather than Lemuria/Lumeria, The Anagrammatic Avenger?
 
Well, the 'so what' is, unlike the lost girl and the twins, in this case it was within the power of the actors/convicts to pick and choose which of the super-heroes completed their tasks. Which means they could also have been instructed on which ones to let succeed and which ones to let fail.
 
As I said elsewhere, this is invulnerable to derision. Nothing less than a bursting shell can penetrate its cheese. (Try again, doc!)

Case in point: The deep dark secrets bit was terrible, low-rent, poorly staged, ham-fisted, and lame. The secrets were anything but, and the Snidely Whiplash music served only to underline the cringeworthy amatuer-hour stink of the whole affair.

And yet... and yet... it was awesome. Because it was so willfully, shamelessly cheesy.

Ditto the convict challenge. And not just because of the flashing DINNER THEATER ACTORS sign visible from space. (I suspect the convict/actor/singers were told simply to stay in character, and not told about the heroes' 'secret tasks.' I have no reason to believe this, and Galactus knows the show's producers aren't big with the integrity thing, but it's what I believe.)

But the whole setup; the sweet sweet absurdity. Spandex. Mini-van. Orange jumpsuits. Use of the word "litterbug." We're through the looking glass here, people. Fellini looks at this show and thinks, "That's-a some weird shit."

Feedback is in trouble, because his repeated attempts to inject something akin to real emotion into this closed universe o' campy cheese threatens to cause the whole thing to collapse in on itself. Leaving nothing but a lone pair of Shiny Pants, fluttering noiselessly in the void.
 
Wait--that lost little girl was just pretending?

As for the convictoids, they may have been given parameters to determine whether a given hero should meet violent resistance or grudging acceptance. Le[u]mu[e]ria tripped the first reaction by forgoing any real attempt at hiding her real agenda and simply going for her lap (the deck was stacking against whoever choose that option, I think, but Leumie got herself into that.
 
When Stan told Major Vicotry that Superman would never, ever, in a millions years, take off his cape, all I could think was "Stan, have you ever actually read a DC comic before?"
 
This series is rapidly losing me. The tricky challenges in the first couple of episodes were fun, but last night it seemed that the producers had run out of both ideas and cash. Oooo, their significant others revealed the heroes' dark, desperate secrets? Except that no one except Stan seemed to think that there was anything dark about them. And there was an easy out for most of the players: all one'd have had to say was, "Stan, that was in the past. I'm trying to be a better person now. Isn't that what heroes do?"

As with last week, the reasons for potential elimination seemed almost completely arbitrary. Major Victory took off his cape? Oh, horrors! Jeez, Silver Age Superman did that every time he took Lois or Jimmy to the Fortress of Solitude. Stan and/or the producers seem desperate for any reason to ratchet up the tension.

The one good thing about WWTBAS? is that it drives my wife nuts. She's a reality show junkie, but every time Stan starts in with one of his dubious "a superhero would never..." speeches, she shouts, "Come on! Why are you watching this crap?"
 
Yeah - back in the Silver Age, when Stan presumably would have actually been checking out his competition, they used to have whole storylines about how Superman would use his indestructible cape to contain an explosion or something, forget it or have it stolen, and spend the whole rest of the issue trying to recover it. Batman in the Brave & the Bold days was known to pull his cape off the shoulders for bullfighting or just to wrap around some dude's head so he wouldn't see where the punches were coming from. Superheroes might not *unmask* for no reason, but a cape is an accessory that can be used if it's for a purpose - like letting a little old lady cross safely. He shouldn't have lost points for that one, although it didn't seem necessary to remove cape *and* gloves with the inmates - that seemed just for comfort.
 
However, MV ad been warned about the cape infraction once in the episode already, so he should have known better than to take it off again.
 
"When Stan told Major Vicotry that Superman would never, ever, in a millions years, take off his cape, all I could think was "Stan, have you ever actually read a DC comic before?""

Stan's also said repeatedly that Spider-Man would never take off his mask or reveal his public identity, which means he doesn't read Marvel comics either.
 
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
 
Screw you, Stan Lee!

He even had a picture of her up next to his head as he told off Major V!

(Previous post deleted because the link didn't work)
 
Stan's zoopuh-heero ideals are clearly based on general public perception, not comic-book reality. I mean, who was he kidding with that stuff to Feedback about superheroes being neat? Like that famous neatnik Peter Parker? I join Hal Jordan in laughing with gusto at those alleged "dark pasts".

I'll miss Creature; she was interesting. The only thing I'll miss about Lemuria is looking at her; she was abysmal as a superhero. Plus, Stan was never going to award the victory (hint!) to someone whose name he can't pronounce.

But that means that Fat Momma is the only shot for a superheroine, and I don't think she has a prayer against Major Mccheese and his feisty foe in fromage, Feedback.
 
To me the most startling revelation from Feedback's wife is that Feedback . . . has a wife.
 
You know what kind of person decorates his desk with a bust of himself? Supervillains.

That would explain why the Dark Enforcer is working for Stan, too.
 
Per Stan Lee's logic, Feedback broke a cardinal rule by giving away personal information about himself. Superman never told anyone that his foster father died, Batman has never told anyone that his parents were murdered when he was a child, etc.

I liked Lemuria and I'm pretty pissed that Fat Momma and Feedback lasted longer then her. I detest Feedback so much that he has one of those faces you just want to punch. I realized the whore (Major Victory) was going to win this thing, but Lemuria, Monkey Woman, and Major Victory were entertaining. With 2 out of 3 gone, I have no reason to keep watching this thing now.

So I won't.
 
"To me the most startling revelation from Feedback's wife is that Feedback . . . has a wife."

Indeed.
 
The weakest episode of the series so far, easily. Stan the Man wrote comic books for a living? Could have fooled me with that total b.s. he was peddling during this episode. Right, superheroes have never done ye olde chivalry thing with the cape, or never disrobe in whole or in part. Right, superheroes would never do anything like jaywalk.

But more importantly, the challenges just weren't very clever this time, or amusing. The convicts thing was very obviously a set-up employing actors (come on, if you didn't guess that during the signing of the waivers, I want your address so I can offer to sell you the Brooklyn Bridge cheap) but that's not so much the problem. The real thing is that the gimmick on the show so far should have led the substance of the challenge to be, "Who actually tried to connect to the convict and didn't pay any attention to the secret challenge jive?". That still would have knocked out Lemuria, fine, but much more satisfying if so.

This episode felt like a stretch, like they didn't have enough material to really make it work.
 
Famously, Stan has difficulty recalling what happened in stories he wrote, it's hardly a shock he's forgotten things in Superman...
 
Stan seems unnaturally obsessed with MV taking off his clothes, as he's the only one that keeps bringing up his stripper past... and then gets angry when his stripper past is brought up.

Stan Lee is clearly a crazy person, ths show is clearly deranged nonsense, and I clearly can't stop watching.
 
The entire show is fake, half the cast are actors, including
Feedback
Creature
Lumeria
If you didn't figure it out with the tearful end of the recent episode, I guess I also need to tell you that Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny don't exist too.

I'm so disappointed :(
 
I do have to admit that it was a letdown to see past acting listed for so many of these folks. I understood that Major Victory is now a DJ and was previously a male stripper (I noticed that the earliest acting credit he had was as a dancer!) so I figure a showbiz past is no surprize there...but Feedback is supposed to be a Software Developer not an actor. Come on! They said he quit his job to be on the show. Was that a lie?
 
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