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15 February 2003 @ 03:41 am
Daredevil  
lithera told me that people who like comic books would like it, and people that don't would hate it.

Don't get me wrong, there are some comic books and comic-book derived things I enjoy. Sandman, Elfquest, Fray, and the Books of Magic. The first two batman movies were OK, as was Spider Man, and I enjoyed the X-Men movie. I like Batman Beyond, even if I thought the explanation in "Return of the Joker" was almost unforgivable cheese. I like Buffy and Angel, which I suppose are stylistically similar to comic book stuff.

Not only are these internally consistent well-developed worlds, but each major divergence from our world had in-story reasons. There are core facts central to the setting and story; once those are swallowed, additional cheese is at a minimum. I especially hate "menagerie" settings (like most superhero groups) where each character has a unique and unusual origin; to me, this means each character is a separate block of cheese that has to be swallowed, making the whole unpalatable.

My first and biggest problem with Daredevil was the over-the-top stunts. I could have swallowed combat scenes up to and including the "Charlie's Angels" level of cheese, and much of the actual combat in Daredevil was OK. I was just taken out of the movie by the impossible jumps and stupid kinetic changes (such as dropping twenty stories to be suddenly stopped by a line to a grappling hook) that would obviously rip a human body apart. Daredevil pulled this kind of shit a lot more than Spider man, which is interesting since I find it a lot more plausible for Spider Man; he actually has increased strength and constitution in-story, unlike Daredevil who only has some enhanced senses and a freaky echolocation. Also, webbing demonstrated a lot more give than rope, so Spider-Man's kinetic changes would be drastically softened.

Second, I was just annoyed by Bullseye. He's so corny-evil that every moment of screen time he had just annoyed me. I would have much rather seen the Kingpin have more screentime and accomplish far more with mere human henchmen.

Finally, I just didn't see Daredevil/Murdock as a sympathetic character. Spidey had a surprising amount of resonance, but Daredevil was just a vengeful holier-than-thou murderer who eventually tries to prove to himself that he's not the bad guy. Finally, we have a character other than batman who makes the stuperhero costume plausible: this psycho is something of a glory hound. Unlike Batman, who uses intimidation and his reputation as tools, Daredevil seems to simply get off on the attention. This explains the gasoline double-d, the logo on his outfit, the fact that he uses the same grappling cane (with a custom crest!) both in and out of costume, his very public fight with electra, his grandstanding before attacking that rapist, his choice of a VERY public bar to start the attack, his smugness after the Kingpin discovered his identity, and his posturing by that reporter's apartment. This man doesn't use his costume as a disguise, he uses it to feed his glory.

lithera says she's never taking me to comic book movies again, but I'm looking forward to X2.
 
 
 
Turning the Schmaltz up to 11: fightpullthestars on February 15th, 2003 10:54 am (UTC)
next time, she'll just get to sit by us :)
Jim: fueganwarpdragon on February 16th, 2003 08:08 pm (UTC)
You forgot the part about the movie taking way too long for what was a half-hour of story, tops.