SDCC Trailer Park (Who, Trek, DC, Godzilla)

I don't do a lot of this, but this year's San Diego Comic-Con saw the premiere of a ton of long-awaited and frankly exciting trailers. So I picked the ones I was actually excited about, and I'm gonna react. If I didn't like them, they're not on here. Barr maybe one (that's a pun for long-time readers, by the way).

Doctor Who - We've been waiting a loooonnnnng time, it feels, for even a nugget of information from Chibnall's Doc13 team, and nuggets is in fact all we got. He's playing it very close to the vest. A few days before SDCC, we got a teaser completely dissimilar to the trailer, so let's start there:

I love Jodie's smile so damn much! Is this meant to be an abstraction, like Doc9 running from a fireball back in 2005? Or are they actual shots from the show? If so, it looks like time's broken again, and Jodie's Doctor may or may not have access to her TARDIS, but could go looking for it through these temporal anomalies, along with a trio of companions who feel the turn of the universe like her (and get unlimited pizza). Good diversity in the cast, but who are they? Let's look to the trailer for more clues:

Nice speech, and the mention of new times and worlds does tend to dispel the (to some) worrying notion that she might be trapped on Earth in the now, à la UNIT Era. No TARDIS though. It also seems like all three ARE companions; one of the things that wasn't clear to me from previous announcements was if this was a team or a CAST. In the latter case, the older character, for example, might have been a recurring antagonist, or any of them might have been a supporting cast member, like Sgt. Benton or Danny Pink. Not a whole lot to go one, mind you. Quarries and such, but at least one shot shows an alien planet with multiple suns. No enemy is shown (I'm hoping for all new threats, frankly, though I'm still waiting for a Yeti redesign), but even without any information on the plots, yes, I agree with the Doctor, this is gonna be fun. BONUS: The new sonic screwdriver, via the toy line.
Where there's a screwdriver, there's a TARDIS, right? That's as maybe. It looks organic, but also kind of kit-bashed on the fly (raw crystal at the tip, soldered metal...). Still not sure the blue box is accessible before a number of episodes have passed.

Star Trek Discovery has a Season 2 trailer out, let's look at it:

Well, they're certainly pushing the humor in this one, especially once the music cue starts playing. That last scene could be right out of The Orville. But the first season was so grim at times, I'm not sure I mind it. This is more about exploration than warfare, though there seems to be some exciting action moments regardless, and I'm all for it. What is distinctly absent is Jason Isaacs, who many tapped as the next captain of the Discovery, i.e. Lorca Prime. Instead, surprise surprise, Christopher Pike takes command, at least in the short term, because only the Discovery's spore drive can (presumably) jump around to space-time anomalies in his Search for Spock (that Vulcan keeps getting himself lost, doesn't he?). Anson Mount seems to be channeling the Reboot's Bruce Greenwood more than the original pilot's Jeffrey Hunter, but I guess that's a legitimate approach for modern viewers. I believe Greenwood's catch phrase was "Punch it", but I don't remember Hunter having one. Anyway, I'm up for leaving the war behind, and we'll see if the series has jettisoned too much of itself (leaving some plot threads dangling) or just enough.

Next up, a trio of superhero trailers. There were more, but either I don't care, or I didn't want to spoil myself by looking ahead on a TV series I'm behind on. First, Shazam!

Putting horror director David F. Sandberg on this seems to have been a big fake-out. It's not gonna be grimdark New52 Shazam, but rather a superhero comedy, and I'm up for it. The fakey, padded superhero look works because it's Zachary Levi, kind of doing Young Chuck, and I'm deeply interested in how this segment of the DC Cinematic Universe will work, tonally. I mean, are they still doing a Black Adam stand-alone? And if it's dark as per the comics, how will that work when these guys eventually meet? This movie has Mark Strong as a more physically impressive Dr. Sivana, but Adam probably won't be in it more than an end credit sequence, if at all. The one worry is that Cap and Billy don't feel like the same person. Cap is a big kid, but Billy is jaded and streetwise. Maybe we're just seeing moments of elation, but it's like he's playing an aged-up Freddy instead. But the trailer sold it, I'm in. In fact, between this and our next trailer, the DC movies seem to have turned a corner, into FUN.

Black Manta is gorgeous! Gonna save the ink and send you to a special Fire and Water Podcast where Xum Yukinori and myself guested on Shagg and Rob's show to talk about this trailer about 15 minutes after it dropped. FOLLOW THIS LINK FOR IN-DEPTH (nailed it) DISCUSSION!

I debated putting the Titans TV show trailer in here, but this is a family blog. Instead, how to do a "dark" Titans show, via Young Justice. They pulled a "5 years later" between seasons 1 and 2, but ironically, made us wait an actual 5 years for season 3. For those who are nevertheless not caught up, I've set the video to start at the new material, cuz there's almost 3 minutes of spoilery recap!

Markov--- WTF?! OUTSIDERS?!! DAMN IT!!! You know I hate those guys! Especially Geo-Force who is front and center! And they better not pull another "Traitor Terra" story either. It's been done to death! Buttttt, dialing it down, I have to admit YJ has been as good at reinvention as the old Justice League/JLU cartoon was, so I expect Terra to have a different fate, for once, and Geo-Force might even be palatable. We glimpse Black Lightning (a mentor figure?), Metamorpho (yes!) and Katana, while some of the art released for the season includes a cool-looking riff on Halo. I don't know who that four-armed "tick" guy is supposed to be, but he's got a good look. As for the season arc, it's built on the bones of the previous season's "Invasion", the metagene serving as impetus for villains to traffic in potential superhumans. That's worthy. And though it feels like some favorites are going to fall by the wayside to make room for all these new characters, that's what I thought of Season 2, and they totally managed to serve the long-serving members as well, so hopefully, nothing to worry about.

Finally, Godzilla: King of the Monsters!

Destroy All Monsters, but switch out the aliens with a slow-talking eco terrorist played by Vera Farmiga. The trailer may be unspooling in her head because the music definitely trades on a sense of wonder, more than a sense of terror (hey! the monsters finally drained the swamp!). We get a glimpse of each name creature, and maybe a little more. I mean, it's not a Toho kaiju so it's not possible, but doesn't that creature the kid bonds with around 1min10 look like a turtle, i.e. Gamera? Who ELSE bonds with kids as a matter of course? Pipe dream. It's probably the Mothra larva. Off chance it's Anguirus. What we're promised is a big apocalyptic movie with Toho's four greatest monsters (not a big fan of calling them Titans, or is Rodan gonna say "F*** Godzilla!" at some point?), and how can I not be up for that? Sally Hawkins is just the cherry on top.

So there you have it. What did you think of these trailers, or alternatively, any others that caught your eye coming out of SDCC?


Anonymous said...

About "Shazam", all the trailer clips seem to be from the first half of the movie. Obviously I haven't seen the movie yet, but it seems likely to me the movie will go something like this:

- We are introduced to Billy and discover he's a kid who likes fun but stands up to bullies. Character established, audience is on his side.

- Billy gets his powers, and at first it looks like it's all fun and games. That's where most of the Captain Marvel* scenes seem to take place.

- Later in the movie, Black Adam* shows up, and Billy realizes he needs to use his powers to stop a bully. He takes his responsibilities seriously, and becomes a hero.

*: Man, the names in this movie. "Captain Marvel" and "Black Adam" are likely to ruffle feathers, but calling them "Shazam" and "Captain Chocolate Egg Cream" means they can't even use their own names in casual conversation. Black Adam is an easier fix, just call him Teth-Adam. But as for Captain Marvel, there aren't that many good options that spring to mind. Maybe something like "Divine Lightning" -- a terrible name but you see where I'm going with this. To me he'll always be "Captain Marvel", or "The Big Red Cheese".

arw1985 said...

I think that "turtle" was supposed to be Mothra in her worm state. I could be wrong, though.

As for the Titans trailer, I did like it but even I'll admit it was trying to be a little too edgy. I can't blame you for not putting it here. Hopefully, it isn't all that.

Siskoid said...

Anon: Dwayne Johnson isn't in this movie, so no Black Adam.

arw1985: Mothra for sure, she's the "goodie" kaiju, after all.

As for Titans, the only team with that name I actually felt something for the Bob Haney era's, and I don't put TV shows on my must see list very often. I'm a year late on all the CW shows, for example, backed up on the Marvel Netflix output (usually 2 shows behind) and haven't seen most of the new ones at all. If I sit down in front of the TV, it'll usually be a film (as This Week in Geek proves). Whether Titans is good or bad, its trailer goes for unnecessary shock value. I also disagreed with Discovery dropping the F-bomb last year. I don't find it edgy, just lazy, and it takes me out of the fantasy.

Brendoon said...

Ah! Good discussion here.
Not much has been given away, but I've got such high hopes for Chris Chibnall's tenure, Jodie and the crew are firing the imagination already... the BBC can be so cruel in their expert building of anticipation!

Man, I'm so wondering about Cap'n Marvel's naming dilemma too. It's bound to be part of the movie humour but I've no idea on how it'll resolve. There's always been allowances because of history, but the way the big studios protect their turf today??
Because CM was a funny paper aimed to include, perhaps, eight year olds it was always up in the air exactly how "Grown up" The Big Red Cheese was... so CM as a big kid is never quite in conflict with the golden aged original... but it's always hard to spot when "the wisdom of Solomon" is in action!

Anonymous said...

It's so hard to get the tone of Captain Marvel right, or at least modern writers have trouble with it. But -- did you ever follow the Dr. Mcninja web comic ... ? That dude could totally capture the tone and action of Captain Marvel. In case you're not familiar, read this saga (or at least a few pages of it) ...

... and tell me it doesn't feel like an afternoon in Fawcett City.

Brendoon said...

Dang! That is so FINE!
That tab's going to be open on the browser for weeks, I suspect.


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