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The Week in Geek: We watch the Watchmen, Star Wars trailer, and Loeb leaves Marvel behind
It's the end of another week. We made it! And with Halloween coming up before next weekend, there's a good chance you'll be wearing a spooky/sexy costume this weekend. Personally, I will be dressing as sexy student loan forgiveness. Or, depending on your outlook, I will be dressing as spooky student loan forgiveness.
But that's days away. Eons, really. There was a whole week that already happened and you might've missed the highlights. Can't let that happen — not on almost-but-not-really Halloween!
So here they are: The five biggest stories from ... The Week in Geek!
WE WATCH THE WATCHMEN, APPARENTLY
Since Game of Thrones ended, HBO has clearly been on the lookout for a new hit. Well, good news, HBO executives: People really watched the hell out of the new HBO series Watchmen, which is sorta kinda based on the Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons graphic novel of the same name. Or, if they didn't watch it, they most assuredly talked about it.
And there is a lot to talk about. Much like the original story Moore and Gibbons created, this new Watchmen story does not view right-wing ideology particularly favorably. And this new series, created by Damon Lindelof, focused a great deal on race in its premiere episode. This new story opens on an oft-ignored part of America's history: the Tulsa Race Massacre of 1921.
Because this horrific time in American history is usually glossed over in American education, a lot of people were surprised to hear about this event. Some people thought it might even be made up. Nope! It happened.
Mostly, though, there was a debate over whether this new Watchmen is "too political." Especially since Rorschach, now thought to be long dead in this timeline, has inspired a mob of white supremacists acting out his racist, vigilante ideology in new and terrible ways.
So far people are turning out to watch the Watchmen. But there will probably be boycotts. Maybe that will bring in more viewers, maybe less. In the interim, HBO is certainly getting the bare minimum of what it needs: new attention to its slate of programming.
STAR WARS TRAILER
With less than two months to go until Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker is released in theaters, y'all knew there would be one more trailer.
That trailer dropped this week. It's big on emotions, but, weirdly, not as big on plot clues as maybe some people think. Yeah, we saw Lando again. Yes, C-3PO says a thing that sounds like a tearful goodbye. Yeah, the Reylo seems pretty real. As does the potential conflict/heat between Finn and Rey.
But we have no idea what Lando's plot is or whether he's even in the movie much. C-3PO is a known drama queen, so he's probably fine, honestly. And as for the Reylo stuff or the Finn stuff: That's potentially just trailer editing, baby! You don't know squat. For all you know, Finn's talking to someone else! Reylo could just be a friend thing! Or nothing at all!
It was pretty cool seeing Rey standing up to Emperor Palpatine, though, huh?
JEPH LOEB TO EXIT MARVEL TV
Speaking of Disney and fixating on the stuff happening behind the scenes, do y'all remember that news from last week where Kevin Feige became the creative director for all of Marvel? Just, like ... all of it?
Jeph Loeb is the guy behind all your big Marvel TV stuff. Your Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., all the Netflix stuff, Cloak & Dagger, Runaways, et cetera. He is reportedly leaving that role at the end of November 2019.
It's clear that things have been changing for a while. All the Marvel Netflix shows got iced. Cloak & Dagger is gone after this season. So is Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. That Ghost Rider series isn't even happening. So the times, my sweet Bob Dylan babies, they are a-changing.
Interestingly, the rumor is that Loeb's departure has nothing to do with Kevin Feige. Sure. That's technically possible.
BOX OFFICE MOJ-OH NO
Box Office Mojo is a website that people use to keep tabs on box-office data. You can see how well a movie is doing domestically or internationally. You can see what the stats are for specific years in cinema history. There's data that pits one movie or franchise against another. You can get a sense of the amount of money studios pull in per year.
Box Office Mojo, in short, has been one of the most easy-to-use and helpful tools to both media critics and people who just like movie data alike for a very long time now. Which is a lot of people. It was very Web 1.0, but it didn't really need to be anything else. It's just numbers, mostly.
This week a whole lot of that changed. Box Office Mojo now has a new layout that people are struggling to use or understand. It now proudly displays the IMDb Pro label, as well. And, of course, if you want to access all the site's features, you now have to shell out $20 a month. Just a quick reminder that we're about to be able to see a huge chunk of Disney's entire back catalog for $5 a month.
The response has not been positive.
Maybe people are spoiled by having had this service available for free for so long, but, with such a negative response, it's hard to believe that some of these changes might not be walked back a bit — at least, I hope so.
THUNDER FORCE COMES OUT OF NOWHERE, KINDA WINS WEEK
There's a Netflix series filming right now that will star Melissa McCarthy and Octavia Spencer. It's a superhero show called Thunder Force. We had heard about it a little while ago, but this week remote-location filming began and, in the parlance, people's wigs flew off when they saw the costumes. It's not that fat women have never appeared in genre television and film before. It's that they tend to find themselves in a supportive role. Think Etta Candy from Wonder Woman and you got it. So not only are McCarthy and Spencer the leads, but they're also dressed in a way that respects their bodies. And that is kinda new, yeah.
This isn't about anyone being courageous. It's just about a thing happening that should've happened a while ago that we're finally seeing now. Fingers crossed people are watching. I am 100 percent looking at you, Valiant Comics. Let's see that Faith movie!
And that's it. Your week in geek is over. Go in peace. Let us know what you thought of these stories and what stories are winning your week.