Thursday, July 13, 2023

Gunn Shy

Okay, I will happily admit that I am nothing short of DELIGHTED that Anthony Carrigan has been cast as Metamorpho in the new James Gunn- helmed cinematic DC universe.

Obviously, I was hoping for KALE, but one must be reasonable.
Besides casting THAT perfect could cause the multiverse to implode.

This is the THIRD DCU character Carrigan will have played (he was The Mist on Flash and Mr. Zsazs on "Gotham") and I'm sure he'll be awesome because Carrigan is always awesome.

And the fact that he looks like my late partner, Ted, does not influence my opinion at all.


I have next to zero faith in James Gunn.

Why, you wonder? 

1. I have seen other James Gunn movies. Before you'd ever heard of him. Because I'm a film hipster. Specifically, I am a HORROR hipster, the world that James Gunn comes from.  Dude is TROMA. And if you don't know what THAT means, well, then you AREN"T a horror hipster.  

James Gunn. James Wan (Saw; Insidious, etc.). David Sandberg (king of the $10 horror short).  It's no accident that owners of superhero IPs have turned to same directors who revitalized horror (another easily ridiculed and previously unrespected genre that now dominates the box office).

I'm certainly not going to assert that James Gunn is not talented. He certainly is.  He's Troma!  But James Gunn is.... not classy.  

High Quality Groot vomiting Blank Meme Template
I can't articulate why I think this.
It's just an instinct I have about it.

And not in the "I COULD be classy but I am choosing not to be"way of the intentional avant-garde.  No, I don't think James Gunn CAN be classy.  Call me old-fashioned, but I think someone who can't be classy shouldn't be in charge of the DCU's intellectual properties.

 I can't articulate why I think this.
It's just an instinct I have about it.

2. James Gunn trusts Tom King

“He’s been one of the guys in the room with us, along with four or five other others. I love his take on these characters. He just turns them slightly to be something very unique.”

It makes me wonder who the others four or five were.

Similarly trustworthy advisors, I'm sure.
P.S. Carrigan would be an AWESOME Tharok.

Troma should mean crazy, but not crazy STUPID. I can't imagine a worst choice for a person to advise on What To Do With/How To Handle DC characters, sort of reanimating Cullen Bunn (I mean, he's dead to me, at least).

Or asking Bob Haney to return from the planet Shakari
And HE could at least help with Metamorpho.  Just keep him away from Batman Stuff.

3. He's hired Nathan Filion to play Guy Gardner. Look, I know a lot of people have a soft spot for this actor, and I'm sure he's a wonderful fellow.  But (A) Nathan Filion, at 52 years old, is at least 15 years too old to play Guy Gardner and (B) even I, who barely know who Filion is, know that he's OBVIOUSLY a "Hal Jordan" not a "Guy Gardner".  How easy it would have been to find someone unlikeable who we were already primed to dislike. I'm sure Cullen Bunn's available.

Cullen Bunn - Wikipedia
I can't articulate why I think this.
It's just an instinct I have about it.

Gunn didn't hire Nathan Filion because he was right for the part (as Carrigan is for Metamorpho). He hired him because he likes him and has worked with him before.  I get what a Boy's Club Hollywood is but... yeah, you just proved to me that cronyism matters more to you than doing what's right for the character.  And if you have ME concerned that someone isn't doing right by GUY GARDNER... you cannot be trusted with the DCU.  


Anonymous said...

Here’s why I think James Gunn could make a great Superman movie:

1) He can do sentiment- see the Ratcatchers scene in The Suicide Squad, the tender moments in Peacemaker, the more affecting scenes in the GotG movies. Superman shouldn’t be schmaltzy, but there should be a positive emotional core to the characters and his stories. A little corniness fits the character.

2) Gunn is good with action and practical effects. More than that, he includes a variety of set pieces in his super-hero movies.

3) Actors in Gunn movies usually deliver. Anthony Carrigan as Metamorpho is inspired casting.

Here’s what worries me:

1-3) the reasons you listed.

4) A good Superman movie needs a good Lois Lane. Gunn doesn’t always write woman characters well. They’re usually tough and troubled or weird and naive. Lois is tough, but in a different way than, say, Gamora.

- Mike Loughlin

Bryan L said...

Gunn seems to be throwing a lot of toys into the pool all at once. It's like he's going from zero to Avengers in one movie. I'm not saying the approach can't work, but it's a lot to juggle.

That said, Tom King. I am officially concerned.

Anonymous said...

There is a version of Guy that Nathan Fillion would be good as: the pre-brain-damaged version. He was just sort of a bland do-gooder, someone who made my man Hal seem deep and nuanced by comparison. Nathan could nail that, 100% certainty.

The question is, what happens after whatever brain trauma he experiences, can Nathan sell that? He's a really solid actor, so I wouldn't put it past him. But, to put it in power ring terms, does he have the ability to overcome great looks and almost limitless charm?

If you're looking for a pool of Guy Gardner actors, look at gangster films. Depending on what direction you want to go with Guy, find someone who plays either the reckless hothead or the superficially charming monster.

- HJF1

CobraMisfit said...

Gunn did great work for Marvel.

Then again, GotG, of which I have been a rabid fan for decades, is hard to mess up. Until the first movie, there were perhaps 12 of us who know about GotG. 5 of us actually liked them.

I worry how he'll handle DC icons.

Pairing up with Tom "I Break Everything Because I Can" King is not a comforting first step....

Anonymous said...

Yeah, my first thought about the Fillon casting was, "Guy?" I mean, he voiced Hal before in animation, and did a creditable job I thought. But he is getting too up there for Guy.

Based on your advice, I've avoided reading anything by Tom King. So I can't speak first hand to the wisdom of that preference.

I do think Gunn genuinely cares about the DCU and the characters. Which puts him one up on the previous stewards of the characters. Hopefully that'll be enough.

-- Jack of Spades