1992 Marvel Masterpieces vs The Movies

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I still remember when I saw this on the back of a comic book. Wow. When you are like 11 years old and a huge comic book fan during the peak of baseball card collecting, there was no better idea in the world than combining the two and making comic book cards. To me and my friends back in the day, the 1992 Marvel Masterpieces set was the set of all sets to collect. I still remember going to the store to buy them.

You see, nobody knew how huge of a hit these cards would be, so the stores didn’t pre-order a ton. So as kids, the only place to get them in a fifty mile radius was this grungy card store shop (remember those) where we would go in and some fat and smelly dude would eye you the entire time as if we would ruin his merchandise. I remember my first visit, there was a rookie Michael Jordan basketball card in the case for $50. My dad was like “Hey, what about that?” I shook my head in disdain. Nobody collected basketball cards. Marvel, now that was where the action was at.

So I plunked down $10 for 4 backs of this sweet set. I went home and opened them with my brother watching on and discovered we had just bought (co-investment opportunity, of course) 24 marvel cards, but didn’t hit the big home run which were hologram cards (the only time to admit as a boy to like sparkly things). Damn. I showed the other kids on the block and they of course had to buy some and before I knew it, I was smack dab in the middle of a ponzi scheme of some sort.

Each time I returned to the shop, the prices skyrocketed. Two weeks later it was $3 a pack. Then $3.50. Then $4. Then $4.50. The fat and smelly guy was raking in a good profit per box thinking the good times were never gonna end. (Ironically, these tactics kind of contributed to crushing the hobby. When all was said and done, I owned the entire set and all the holograms. I don’t know much it is worth, nor do I care. They are in a box somewhere in my house and represent a part of my childhood.

Thus, with the craze that Marvel comic book movies have been the last decade, I thought it would be funny to see how accurate the 1992 set depicted the characters that would eventually hit the silver screen the following 25 years. I plan to continue the series in the weeks and months ahead.

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Apocalypse was adapted pretty faithfully for the movies. His face is a little different, blue vs white, but the color and armor are pretty darn close. I don’t know if he can summon a green fireball in his hands, since the movie isn’t released yet, but hey, it sure looks pretty faithful to me.

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Sandman looked the part for a little bit. An attempt was made to match the t-shirt and hair color. The only problem was that after Spider Man danced on the tables and destroyed the franchise, the Sandman became the Sandmonster in an nonsensical ending.

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Hawkeye was just okay to me. The bow wasn’t as bad ass and just look at his arrow. Pretty damn weak in the movie. On the 1992 card, I could imagine that thing blowing up something huge. And what’s up with having no mask? Does the movie Hawkeye not care about his identity? Does he like the wind to flow through his hair? The movie fails a little bit in the mask department.

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Professor X pretty much was nailed. There is no argument about that. They even got the blazer and tie going. If I was to nitpick, his wheel chair in the movie looks a bit more slick. But good on the film getting the look right.

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Red Skull is a little bit off. The card has more teeth and a skeletal look to him and the eyes filled up his entire socket, but nonetheless, the adaptation was pretty close. The more fleshy-red look was suitable to get Hugo Weaving’s acting chops to show up rather than some CGI bullshit.

CONTINUE WITH THE NEXT BATCH OF COMPARISONS…

https://mmleonard.com/2016/04/14/1992-marvel-masterpieces-vs-the-movies-part-2/

TV Reviews: Daredevil (Pilot)

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When I heard Netflix was launching Daredevil as a TV series, I was seriously a bit Marvel’d out. Already getting slammed by Affleckdevil and Garnelectra, I wasn’t much interested in watching more of our favorite blind super hero.

But I was wrong.

I knew it from the opening two minute sequence showing the entire origin story right there. Boom. Get me right into the story. This is something many superhero reboot or origin stories need to learn from. We don’t need to spend the first act of every super hero movie finding out how they got their powers.  Just throw me in the damn story and trust the audience is smart enough to follow.

The protagonist is very likeable and believable (in comparison to say … The Rock wanting to play Jack Burton in a Big Trouble in Little China reboot), so the audience roots for him early on. The opening episode ends with the antagonists meeting to discuss the situation without Kingpin and leaves us wanting more, which was the point of the pilot.

Future episodes with Fisk, Stick, Father Lanton, Turk, Wesley, Jack Murdock, Melvin Potter, Claire Temple, Karen Page, Nobu, and Madame Gao would have to wait. I was hooked, and resisted the urge to stay up to 4 am to binge watch the whole thing.

I only wish other Marvel franchises took the same approach. Focus on character development and plot. Comic book series were printed over a long time and all of key details and suspense is lost when it is crammed in 2 hours in a PG setting.

Now, when will Netflix make Neil Gaiman’s Sandman?

Pilot Rating: 9/10