MUST WATCH: INVINCIBLE!

Hey Everyone,

Paul here…

After a brief hiatus, we’re back! for WBM SPRING 2021 Movie & TV Preview: Week 2/Week3! Today we’re going to take a look at the excellent new Amazon Prime series, INVINCIBLE…

Mark Grayson AKA Invincible

Amazon Prime’s New Series INVINCIBLE

At first glance, Invincible appears to be another coming-of-age superhero tale mixed with a variation on The Superman Archetype. However, this fantastic new series from Amazon Prime actually subverts every troupe and expectation that comes along with the above mentioned stories, to create it’s own wonderfully rich and unique series. Invincible is based on the phenomenal comic book series of the same name from writer Robert Kirkman, creator of The  Walking Dead. Animation is the perfect way to tell this story because the universe of Invincible is as wild and creative as the Marvel or DC Universes. If you like superhero movies and TV, but are looking for something new from the genre, Invincible is the series for you.

So What’s It About?

Invincible and Atom Eve flying together. Eve has the ability to manipulate matter on a molecular level.

17 year old Mark Grayson is a typical teenager, except for the fact his father is Omni-Man, the world’s greatest superhero. Kind of like Superman, Mark’s dad is an alien from another world called Viltrum. Omni-Man, or Nolan Grayson, came to earth on a peacekeeping mission and eventually met his wife Debbie. Being half Mark will inherit his fathers abilities. When he finally does, he jumps right in the superhero game. Whether it’s rescuing people or stopping bad guys so low, working with all the superheroes like teen teen or the guardians of the globe, or working with his dad who is training him on how to use his abilities and develop them over time. Nolan and Debbie are still very much in love and Mark is over the moon about finally got his powers. There’ loving family who care deeply about one another. However, things aren’t as perfect as they seem.

Steven Yuen as Mark
Mark at high school

Though not a full-time member, Invincible often works with superhero groups like The Teen Team and The Guardians of The Globe. The member of the team team that in March is most friendly is Adam and Eve, if you can go to Marks high school. Mark finds himself in an interesting love triangle between his new girlfriend Amber and fellow superhero Atom Eve, who undeniably has feelings for Mark.

(Left to Right: Rex-Splode, Atom Eve, Invincible (Mark Grayson), Dupli-Kate)
L. Amber; R. Eve

This series has so much going for it, I almost don’t know where to start. The vocal performances are fantastic, mostly due to the stellar voice cast. Steven Yuen (Glenn from The Walking Dead) plays the series lead, Mark Grayson/Invincible. This was pitch perfect casting and Yuen doesn’t disappoint with a excellent  performance. Sandra Oh plays Marks mom and wife of J.K. Simmons’ Omniman, The worlds most powerful superhero. Speaking of, another highlight in the series is JK Simmons, who adds another iconic comic book character to his resume as Mark’s father Omniman, the world’s most powerful superhero. His performance in the Spider-Man films as J. Jonah Jameson is one of the best marriages of character and actor in any superhero film. Jameson and Omni-Man couldn’t be more different from one another, yet it’s a testament to Simmons’ versatility as an actor that he brings such nuance and subtlety this fascinating and complicated character. With supporting roles that include John Hamm, Gillian Jacobs, Walton Goggins Zachary Quinto Seth Rogen, Kevin Michael Richards, and many, many more. Invincible is absolutely stacked with amazing talent.


Not The Same Old Superhero Story

During the show’s quieter moments, like Grayson’s sharing some family time at home, the animation isn’t dissimilar to the type of animation you’d see in on DC Animated Films or Young Justice on HBO Max (Another MUST WATCH series). It’s a clean, stylish lock, that certainly works, but has a bit of a “stock” feel to it. I almost think this is a deliberate choice by the creators, to once again manipulate viewer expectations. The entire show is about subverting classic superhero stories and over the last 10 or 15 years we got used to a certain style of animation, like what I described above. Then the show cuts loose and it’s a feast for the eyes. The action sequences and fight scenes are detailed, visceral, and brutal. This series doesn’t pull any punches. 

  I should also mention this is an excellent adaptation. When I think of all the big moments and characters that I would really want to see at this point in the story, as a fan of the original comic book, everything I’m looking for is there and then some. It never feels overstuffed, the pacing is pitch perfect. A lot of character, plot, and mythology for giving to us in the first four episodes, but it never feels like too much. Which brings me to another important part of the series identity. Like the comic book it’s based on, Invincible is extremely violent. They do a fantastic job of showing just how gory and vicious the damage could be if someone with powers like Superman really cut loose. The series wisely doesn’t over do it when it comes to how many ultra violent scenes there are. It never comes off as gratuitous. When we do get a particularly brutal scene it’s in service of the larger and really packs a wallop. 

For comic book fans as well as anyone looking for new and different from the genre, Invincible is a MUST WATCH!

Thanks for reading! Follow me on Twitter @PJWrightWBM or type Worlds Best Media into the search bar, you can also like and follow us on our Facebook page; World’s Best Media. We’re on Instagram @worldsbestmedia2017. Those likes and follows, as well as iTunes reviews, go a long way to supporting World’s Best Media. We really appreciate the loyalty and support shown to us by our fans, so thanks again! Stay healthy and stay safe!

-Paul

Captain America’s Legacy in the MCU

This article contains minor spoilers Episode 2 of The Falcon and The Winter Soldier

Last week, The Falcon and The Winter Soldier premiered and we got our first glimpse of, what seemed to be the new government sponsored Cap. So, I went to Google. I wanted to know who he was, and what was the deal with him. Who is this guy? and What

One thing that was clear right away from the context of the episode: this New Captain America is going to be a big issue for Sam and Bucky. But is he supposed to be a good guy or a bad guy? Or something else entirely?

Is John Walker a Villain, a Pawn, or The Real Deal?

Based on what I learned about the character from the comics, there have been multiple attempts recreate Captain America over the years. The secret to the super soldier serum that turned Steve Rogers into Captain America, died with Dr. Erskine. Imperfect versions of the formula had been tested on more people than the public (and probably Steve) ever knew. Something we learn more about later in this episode. Characters like Nuke, who appeared in Season 1 of Jessica Jones, Weapon X aka Wolverine, and even The Hulk were all created in an attempt to make the next Captain America. The new Captain America on The Falcon and The Winter Soldier, John Walker was another fill in for Steven Rogers who went by US Agent. He’s been both a villain and an anti-hero. So, I was kind of under that impression he’s going to be a villain. What surprised me was that I didn’t think he was a particularly likable character. You would think a big bad would more of an attempt to hide his smug arrogance.

His nice guy routipetoo paper this. Sam and Bucky certainly don’t trust him, seeing Walker with that shield is a slap in the face to Bucky and Sam. I was suspicious from the start to be fair the opening scenes of the episode go along way to humanizing the character. To me, the cracks in Walker’s facade are already showing.

If He’s a Good Guy…

On the other hand, the series could be trying to subvert audience expectations. Sam and Bucky, along with the viewers, don’t trust Walker and even find his very existence to be an insult to the legacy of their friend. Walker could surprise us by realizing he’s in over his head and return the shield, and the legacy that comes with it, back to Sam. But don’t hold your breath.

John Walker & The Shadow of Steve Rogers

Steve Rogers is and always will be synonymous with Captain America. In the comics, Bucky and Sam have both taken up Cap’s mantle. Walker never earned the role. It was handed to him by the the government. Steve didn’t serve a country or government, he fought for the dream of what America can be at its best. Which led to some serious conflicts between Steve and the U.S. government in both The MCU and the comics. So it makes a lot of sense that the U.S. would want a Captain America they could completely control. I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s something much darker in John Walker’s past that hasn’t been revealed to the audience yet. I’d even go so far as to say that some of his backstory that told to us in Episode 2, had been at least partially fabricated for propaganda purposes.

When Will Sam Reclaim The SHIELD?

The heart of this series is Sam Wilson’s journey to accept Steve’s choice and become the true Captain America. More broadly, it’s about America and it’s complicated history with race. Captain America is the personification of the country, so what better way to explore those themes than to tell a story about a black Captain America? We’re already seeing how race politics are playing out in the show. By choosing John Walker instead of Sam, a statement has been made that the government is unwilling to pick a black Captain America. A, sadly, unsurprising move.

Sam is an Avenger, after coming back from the blip and saving the world only to be treated with the same discrimination that people of color deal with every day. When Sam and Bucky are in Baltimore in Episode 2, when the police arrive and their subsequent treatment of Sam was an all too familiar scene. Had the cops not realized that they were talking to 2 Avengers, that scene could have played in very different and horrifying way.

If and when Sam becomes Captain America within The MCU, he’ll face an uphill battle that Steve or Bucky wouldn’t because of bigots and racists in the public, politics and big business who won’t accept a black Captain America. During his time as Captain America in the comics they would even touch on everyday acts of racism, like negative social media reactions with #NotMyCaptainAmerica trending on social media. That’s one of the reasons Sam makes a very compelling Captain America in the comic book and he’ll make a compelling Cap in The MCU. Questions about race and class were baked in to the story when Sam was Captain America. It’s one of the reasons he’s so interesting in that role, because the writers could touch on real world issues that exist around us every day, in a way they couldn’t when Steve or Bucky were Captain America.

Marvel did a good job of showing that Steve was a product of his time and his war. That same opportunity is there when telling a story about Sam Wilson. With only two episodes so far, this series has touched upon some incredibly deep and fascinating issues and beings only promised to get more interesting as the season progresses.

WBM Spring 2021 Movie & TV Preview (Week 1) PODCAST: THE FALCON & THE WINTER SOLDIER- Series Premiere (SPOILERS)!

Hey Everyone,

Paul here…

I’m going to keep this relatively brief. This episode of the podcast is all about one my most anticipated new projects of The MCU, The Falcon and The Winter Soldier. If you’re a World’s Best Media regular, first let me say Thank You and you’re awesome, (if you’re not a frequent visitor, welcome and thanks for being here!), you may have noticed our SPRING 2021 Movie & TV Preview announcement! The COVID-19 pandemic lead to a lot of rescheduling in Hollywood, which resulted in a lot of films and shows getting their release dates shuffled around. As these projects begin to finally have concrete release dates, a lot of really cool stuff ended up with premieres between March and the beginning of May. We have some really really exciting pieces of content coming our way very soon. We’re going to have continuing coverage on all of it, so stay tuned! Kicking things off with Week 1, DC and Marvel are slugging it out for supremacy, with the release of Zack Snyder‘s Justice League and Marvel’s The Falcon and The Winter Soldier. We have a great breakdown and review of Zack Snyder‘s Justice League on the next installment of the podcast, coming very soon!

On this episode of The World’s Best Podcast, we dive right into a FULL SPOILER review of the series premiere of The Falcon & The Winter Soldier! This was a fun episode to record so I hope you all enjoy it! Thanks for listening and enjoy! Listen here or subscribe on iTunes/Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, iHeartRadio, and more!

iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-worlds-best-podcast/id1246038441#episodeGuid=https%3A%2F%2Fapi.spreaker.com%2Fepisode%2F4397346

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Thanks for listening! Follow me on Twitter @PJWrightWBM, our Facebook page; World’s Best Media, and Instagram @worldsbestmedia2017. Those likes and follows, as well as iTunes reviews, go a long way to supporting World’s Best Media. We really appreciate the loyalty and support shown to us by our fans, so thanks again! Stay healthy and stay safe!

-Paul

PODCAST: WandaVision Series Finale (FULL SPOILERS)!

Hey Everyone,

Paul here…

This week on The World’s Best Podcast, guest co-host Mike Cole and I dive right into the Season Finale of WandaVision! How’d the story wrap up? What did we think of the series in general? & What does this mean for the future of the characters and The MCU, after one of Marvel’s most wildly unique and compelling stories yet?

Listen here: https://www.spreaker.com/episode/43761901  Or subscribe/listen on Spotify, Stitcher, Spreaker, iHeartRadio, Deezer, Podchaser, Castbox, Podcast Addict, Google Podcasts, & Apple Podcasts/ITunes…

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SPOILER ALERT!!!

One of the best moments in the finale, is during the fight between the 2 Visions. What begins as a pretty cool physical confrontation, is ultimately resolved when “our” Vision proposes a thought experimental his double (specifically, The Ship of Theseus). This reveals to Vision’s white, doppelgänger, the flawed and conflicting nature of his programming. I loved this scene because it’s a clever way to subvert the superhero story troupe of “The Final Battle”, which was in keeping with the unique nature of the series. I didn’t know at the time, but this was taken straight out of one of a recent Avengers comics! Take a look…

Cool, right?

Thanks for listening! Follow me on Twitter @PJWrightWBM or type Worlds Best Media into the search bar, you can also like and follow us on our Facebook page; World’s Best Media. We’re on Instagram @worldsbestmedia2017. Those likes and follows, as well as iTunes reviews, go a long way to supporting World’s Best Media. We really appreciate the loyalty and support shown to us by our fans, so thanks again! Stay healthy and stay safe!

-Paul

WBM’s SPRING 2021 MOVIE & TV PREVIEW! Week 1: The Falcon & The Winter Soldiers and Zack Snyder’s Justice League! UPDATED

Hey Everyone,

Paul here… Updated: 3/17/2021

From now to the end of May, some of the years most high profile television shows and films will be premiering on streaming networks, digitally, on-demand, and if you’re bold enough, movie theaters. We’re about to roll out a big World’s Best Media’s SPRING 2021 Movie & TV Preview! This is going to include multiple podcasts, some of our best writers offering up reviews and editorials, exclusive video content, and more! New films and shows like The Falcon and The Winter Soldier, Godzilla Vs. Kong, Black Widow, Invincible, Justice Society: World War II, The Irregulars, Jupiter’s Legacy, Invincible and more will all be covered here on World’s Best Media! We’re really excited for you all to see it! Save this page/link to your browser because we’ll be posting multiple updates each week! It could be a new article, a trailer, a first look at a film or TV show poster, or a podcast! We want to provide you with as much fun and interesting new content as possible! Week 1 of World’s Best Media’s SPRING 2021 Movie & TV Preview starts off with a bang! Zack Snyder’s Justice League premieres on HBO Max on 3/18, we already have some beautiful character posters and teasers posted below, to get you psyched for Thursday’s premiere. By Sunday night or Monday morning we’ll have a very special episode of The World’s Best Podcast ready where I recap and review The Snyder Cut, with Tim Cuff and Ryan McDonald, hosts of Cuff’s Basement! However, Zack Snyder’s Justice League isn’t the only exciting project to premiere this week…

Marvel’s The Falcon & The Winter Soldier: (UPDATED on 3/23)

Here’s our FULL SPOILER breakdown/review of The Falcon and The Winter Soldier: Episode 1


Listen here: https://www.spreaker.com/episode/43973460  Or subscribe/listen on Spotify, Stitcher, Spreaker, iHeartRadio, Deezer, Podchaser, Castbox, Podcast Addict, Google Podcasts, & Apple Podcasts/ITunes…

iTunes/ApplePodcats: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-worlds-best-podcast/id1246038441?i=1000513737947

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/show/11mA9kClyevVZjWYMQB1Io?si=7TfnqkBiShqTQpZhh2UDsA

Stitcher: https://www.stitcher.com/s?fid=185563

Keep it here at World’s Best Media for continuing coverage of The Falcon and The Winter Soldier…

Marvel’s The Falcon and The Winter Soldier drops the first installment of it’s 6 episode season on Friday 3/19 on Disney+. Marvel has released multiple trailers and images hinting at some thrilling stuff in store for us in this new series. Check them out right here…

Final Trailer:

Teaser #1:


Behind-The-Scenes Look:

    We’ll be updating this page with our review for The Falcon and The Winter Soldier, as well as other content pertaining to the series, as it becomes available.

Zack Snyder’s Justice League – Posters & Character Teasers: (UPDATED with FULL SPOILER REVIEW)

Listen here: https://www.spreaker.com/episode/43993349  Or subscribe/listen on Spotify, Stitcher, Spreaker, iHeartRadio, Deezer, Podchaser, Castbox, Podcast Addict, Google Podcasts, & Apple Podcasts/ITunes…

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Stitcher: https://www.stitcher.com/s?fid=185563


  Zack Snyder‘s Justice League is absolutely one of the big projects we’re going to cover in our World’s Best Media’s SPRING 2021 Preview! Zack Snyder has posted several cool character teasers, hinting at the arcs for individual heroes in this new film, as well as a few new posters for his 4 hour+, Justice League remake,  premiering HBO Max in just a few weeks. Take a look! UPDATED!!! Check out the epic FINAL TRAILER, new teasers and posters for Wonder Woman, The Flash, and Darkseid!

Final Trailer:

Darkseid Teaser:


The Flash/Aquaman Teaser:

Wonder Woman Teaser:


Cyborg Teaser:

Batman Teaser:

Superman Teaser:

Aquaman Teaser:

Character Posters


Thanks for reading! Follow me on Twitter @PJWrightWBM or type Worlds Best Media into the search bar, you can also like and follow us on our Facebook page; World’s Best Media. We’re on Instagram @worldsbestmedia2017. Those likes and follows, as well as iTunes reviews, go a long way to supporting World’s Best Media. We really appreciate the loyalty and support shown to us by our fans, so thanks again! Stay healthy and stay safe!

-Paul

Weekly Releases Work for WandaVision

I’m not going to have any spoilers for episode 7, “Breaking the Fourth Wall,” in this, but the other episodes should fair game at this point. You’ve been warned.

After the first two episodes of WandaVision aired, I was intrigued and really frustrated that we were getting into the weekly episode format. I talked to Paul at some point before episode 3, and we were both in agreement that we wanted to sit and binge the show, and that it would benefit from that.

I think, we might have been wrong.

You see, Paul and I were both of the mindset that this was a marketing and sales decision, in order to keep people on Disney+ through the run of the show. I still think that is probably the reason it’s being done, but now after watching 7 episodes, I think we’ve benefited from this schedule.

At a certain point a few weeks ago—probably before episode 4’s real world reveals— I thought that maybe the show would benefit, the way that The Mandalorian, so that each big fan service thing or big reveal got its own week to ruminate and be absorbed. I loved that one week we got Bo Katan, the next Ahsoka Tano, the next Boba Fett, and that we weren’t immediately diving into the next thing.

I do think WandaVision has had some of this benefit, especially when we saw Pietro come back, and had a week to wonder, but that’s not the big reason why I think the show is benefitting from weekly releases.

The big reason, is Vision.

From the beginning of the show, we’ve been kind of made to think that Wanda is ‘THE’ main character, with Vision being secondary, but Wanda created the Hex for herself, and also for Vision. And while other Westview characters have been playing the roles that Wanda had cast them in, Vision has been a bit more sentient and self aware earlier on. She didn’t create a puppet of Vision, but really recreated him.

In the fact that Vision, with or without his memory is the real Vision and not just a puppet, the artificial world that Wanda has created has been off to him from fairly early on. It’s been like a cut on the roof of your mouth that you can’t stop tonguing, and seems to not heal because of that. He’s clearly had a sense of analyzing and over analyzing, and trying to figure it all out, trying to make it make sense in his head.

As Vision struggles to make sense of his odd, unreal world, we are trying to do the same. Vision notices something odd, some break or hint in the reality to let him know what’s really going on. And as we wait another week for more information, we do the same.

Easter Eggs

Almost every week, I’ve watched the show first thing when I wake up on Friday morning, before I go on any social media, or do anything. Because I don’t want spoilers. I watch the show, I think about it, and as the day and week progresses, I see videos on YouTube, and posts on Instagram, pointing out the different Easter Eggs, and what they may mean for WandaVisions future.

I’m primed for wanting to know more, and as I see the posts, and watch the videos, people point out “the hand in the mirror” and “QuickSilver said ‘kickass'” and because we know little to none of it is an accident, we’re left wondering what if anything each easter egg is hinting at.

We’re going through the same kind of frustrating search for answers that Vision is going through, and in that way it’s really working.

An Added Benefit

I’m not watching the show with my wife and son, because I didn’t think they’d be interested when I started, but now I plan on rewatching it with them, once it’s over. But after the third episode, I told my wife, “it’s kind of scary, but in a way that I think would be more scary to you, than Logan,” (he’s almost 5).

I think they’ve been slowly causing this psychological dread with in us each week, in a way that they couldn’t really do if we were binging, and I think that dread is also a benefit to the show.

After WandaVision, we know that Wanda is going to be in Dr. Strange 2 which has been described as the MCU’s first horror film, and I think we’re being primed for that a bit. I also think, that the dread we’re getting in some of the episodes is similar to what Vision is experiencing. The vague feeling that something truly awful and heartbreaking may be coming, but not entirely sure what, or from where. And I kind of think that’s the point.

What do you think? I’m sure in our binge culture, you want to binge it, but do you think you’re benefitting from weekly releases instead? Comment below.

PODCAST: WandaVision Episodes 5 & 6 (SPOILERS)!

Hey Everyone,

Paul here…

Things are getting CRAZY in the town of Westview, folks! On this episode of The World’s Best Podcast , we breakdown Episodes 5 & 6 of the excellent, new Disney+ series, (FULL SPOILERS) Over the last 2 episodes, WandaVision has has broken records to become the #1 show in the world!

WandaVision: The #1 Show In The World

I’m not that surprised by the ultra-positive response to the series. Among the reasons for the show’s popularity, is how unique and beautifully unconventional the series. There’s never been a major, mainstream comic book, superhero movie or TV series like this. Which is why it’s attracting so many new viewer who’d normally avoid the genre. It doesn’t look like it’s filled with the big CGI battles that turn some people off. Now audiences who normally avoid superhero-fare like this, are tuning into WandaVision for it’s charm, mystery, nostalgia, and the fact that it could be the most widely unique superhero project of the decade. The MCU seems to have another home run on his hands, now I can’t wait to see what they do with The Falcon and The Winter Soldier which premieres a week after WandaVision wraps up.

Ôjopp

Listen here: https://www.spreaker.com/episode/43472059 Or subscribe/listen on Spotify, Stitcher, Spreaker, iHeartRadio, Deezer, Podchaser, Castbox, Podcast Addict, Google Podcasts, & Apple Podcasts/ITunes…

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Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/show/11mA9kClyevVZjWYMQB1Io?si=7TfnqkBiShqTQpZhh2UDsA

Thanks for listening! Follow me on Twitter @PJWrightWBM or type Worlds Best Media into the search bar, you can also like and follow us on our Facebook page; World’s Best Media. We’re on Instagram @worldsbestmedia2017. Those likes and follows, as well as iTunes reviews, go a long way to supporting World’s Best Media. We really appreciate the loyalty and support shown to us by our fans, so thanks again! Stay healthy and stay safe!

-Paul’s

PODCAST: Best TV Shows 2020!

Hey Everyone,

Paul here…

This episode of The World’s Best Podcast, features the final installment of our series of podcasts looking back at The Best & Worst of 2020! This week’s co-host Big Paul Sr. and I go over The Best TV Series of 2020! The Mandalorian! The Boys! Star Trek! What We Do In The Shadows! Just to name a few of our picks for the coolest shows of 2020! 

   In my opinion, 2019 was one of the best years of television that we’ve ever seen. It was a clear turning point for the medium, where TV could now stand toe-to-toe with Film, to tell the most compelling and beautiful stories on ANY screen. 2020 didn’t quite live up to 2019, but it was still a phenomenal year from A-List programming.

Listen To Our Podcast Here (Available On Every Major

Listen here:  https://www.spreaker.com/episode/43208440  Or subscribe/listen on Spotify, Stitcher, Spreaker, iHeartRadio, Deezer, Podchaser, Castbox, Podcast Addict, Google Podcasts, & Apple Podcasts/ITunes…

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The End of An Era: Arrow & Supernatural Come To An End

After we recorded this episode, we realized we left out a few key, important shows. While we might record a follow up mini episode to talk about these shows further, I still wanted to include a special section here, acknowledging a few of these amazing television programs. Specially, Arrow and Supernatural, both of which ended their groundbreaking runs in 2020…

  It’s the end of an era for two groundbreaking genre series… both Arrow and Supernatural came to an end in 2020. Both show’s helped The CW essentially rebrand itself. The CW was defined as network, by an audience made up of predominantly young women, featuring shows like Dawson’s Creek and other teen romance-dramas. Supernaturaland Arrow largely changed The CW’s identity. With the exception of the show’s handsome leading men, Supernatural was essentially a dark, weekly horror film. As the series grew and developed, it became more of a horror/fantasy/drama and and became The CW’s flagship show over it’s 15 season run. With a rabid and passionate fan base, Supernatural went on to be the longest running and one of the most beloved genre show of all time. 

   Then of course, there’s Arrow. A series that redefined superhero television as we know it. The dark and gritty Siri’s drew much more inspiration from DC’s other most popular billionaire vigilante, with this version of all over queen having much more in common with Batman than the Green Arrow of the comics. The first season in particular drew heavily from Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight Trilogy, foregoing any of the more fantastical elements of the DC Universe in favor of a more grounded and realistic approach. Which seems almost comical in hindsight considering how the show through that philosophy out the window in Season 2. What began as a small vigilante story with nary a superpower in sight ended with a full blown adaptation of Crisis on Infinite Earths! The storytellers were nothing if not ambitious. Arrow went on to launch an entire interconnected universe of DC superhero shows, like The Flash, Supergirl, Black Lightning, and Legends of Tomorrow among others, in what would become known as The Arrowverse . Even though Arrow may have come to an end the universe that there is its name sake is continuing to grow, with the new series Superman & Lois premiering in February on The CW. None of that would have been possible if it wasn’t for Stephen Amell who played Oliver Queen, he grew as a performer and an actor significantly as the series developed, imbuing his Oliver Queen with enough gravitas to shoulder an entire interconnected universe. Without a doubt, Stephen Amell‘s portrayal of Green Arrow made him the leader of an entire multiverse of heroes.

Thanks for listening! Follow me on Twitter @PJWrightWBM or type Worlds Best Media into the search bar, you can also like and follow us on our Facebook page; World’s Best Media. We’re on Instagram @worldsbestmedia2017. Those likes and follows, as well as iTunes reviews, go a long way to supporting World’s Best Media. We really appreciate the loyalty and support shown to us by our fans, so thanks again! Stay healthy and stay safe!

-Paul

I Really Want to Like Batwoman

I’ve been watching Batwoman pretty consistently for the last year and a half. When I wrote the recap at the end of season 1, I was unaware that Ruby Rose had decided to leave the show, and I speculated how the show could improve in season 2 under the assumption she would be returning. Things obviously haven’t gone the way I hoped, but has it been all bad?

We’re currently three episodes in, and while the first two, I think were making some good steps towards digging the show out of the hole they were in, the third feels like a step backward. You see, I love Alice (played by Rachel Skarsten), and Mary Hamilton (played by Nicole Kang), and they’re back, and doing well still. I also, really enjoy Javicia Leslie, as Ryan Wilder the new Batwoman. She’s more charismatic, her character is good, and while it’s probably coming together a bit quickly, there are the growing pains that would come with becoming Batwoman.

Is Kate Kane Dead?

The first problem that arises in the third episode, is that of Kate being still alive. The character of Safiyah (whom I assume will be the season’s big bad) has promised to help Alice find the living Kate in exchange for erasing all evidence of “The Desert Rose.” This seems to be the writer’s having written themselves into this corner, in which the only likely ways it will be fixed are that it’s all a lie, in which case it feels lazy, or that Kate is alive, but her face was mangled, and now after reconstructive surgery she looks like a different person. Both of these possibilities are crappy as far as I’m concerned.

The only other option that I see, one which I will be writing a retraction to this very article if it happens, is that Ruby Rose leaving the show was a fake out, and that the whole plan was to do this the entire time, and have her come back at the end of the season. I don’t know that I would love that result, but if the writing is well done, I would respect the hell out of how fucking bonkers it would be, and how well kept that secret would have been for over a year. I think there is a better chance we’ll see George Clooney come into the show as Bruce Wayne, than that happening.

Too Formulaic

I really enjoy the Arrowverse, but one of my big complaints has been that there was too much repetition in the formula. Every show becomes a ‘team-up’ with a tech person, a black sidekick of equal ability, etc. They started to break from it, Legends of Tomorrow has been a genuine team show, and doesn’t fall nearly as much into this formula. But I’m afraid there’s been a lot of other ways in which the shows have been repetitive, “oh another speedster/archer big bad” being one problem that comes to mind.

In episode 3 of this season, it appears we’re beginning to follow the formula of Arrow in story beats. The big bad from season 1 is actually a lackey to a new big bad who is hidden away from society, with a magical source of healing pretty much everything, and is surrounded by the most highly trained assassins in the world.

Is that what’s going on here? Because episode 3 certainly makes it seem that way.

I don’t want to be dealing with rehashing, and repetition. You can have a bad guy come back in new creative ways, but what I don’t want to see is the female Ra’s Al Ghul. Alice has hints of the Joker, but she’s not a Joker knock-off, and she was my favorite part of season 1. It’s ok to have overlap, but not carbon-copy.

The Other Big Shared Universe

It is not really helping Batwoman, that it’s airing episodes at the same time WandaVision is airing episodes. Both are newer additions into large and successful shared universes, but WandaVision is doing something that I think shines a bit of a light on how Batwoman is failing in that area.

WandaVision, which I think has some issues—mostly in roll out schedule, is another great example of a Marvel property in which we understand that it’s the same continuity with all of the other MCU that has come before, but it seems so fresh and new. It’s something that Marvel has been great about, not falling into a formula, not getting to repetitive; Thor: Ragnarok, Guardians of the Galaxy, had so little in common with what came before but fit so perfectly, and WandaVision does that too.

Batwoman, like I said above, is repeating a lot of the same things from the Arrowverse, and if I’m being honest about what’s “new or different” it’s hard to come up with much. Even the female empowerment, and LGBTQ inclusion aren’t new (not complaining about either of these, but with Supergirl we get both). There just isn’t much that’s new, and it kind of makes it feel like this is our new Arrow, and it doesn’t hold up to that standard.

Prove Me Wrong, Please

Batwoman — “Prior Criminal History” — Image Number: BWN202fg_0078r — Pictured: Javicia Leslie as Ryan Wilder — Photo: The CW — © 2020 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Now, we’re three episodes into the season, and I am open to being wrong. I am hoping I am. I’m watching WandaVision excited to see the next week’s episode every week with no idea what I’m going to get and loving it, and I’m watching Batwoman every week hoping that I’ll get the spark, the thing that’s gonna make me go “ok, this fucking crazy, and this is what makes this show stand out.”

I know nothing about Batwoman and the mythology beyond this show, so as far as I’m concerned that leaves things wide open. Find something to shove us into new exciting territory.

MUST WATCH: WandaVision

Hey Everyone,

Paul here…

As crazy as it must sound, it’s been just over a year and half since Spider-Man: Far From Home hit theaters. The film served as an epilogue of sorts to The Infinity Saga and our last piece of new content from The Marvel Cinematic Universe. When WandaVision premiered on January 15th, it ended what almost became the longest gap in new content since the studio’s inception. Second only to the 1 year 11 month gap between The Incredible Hulk and Iron Man 2. Fortunately, it looks like we have an insane amount of new MCU content coming our way this year, with WandaVision  as the first out of the gate..

  If going to talk about WandaVision, if you’ve seen the trailers, which I’m sure most of you have, you know the deal. But just in case, I’m posting a trailer right here to refresh your memory. Take one last look if you need a brief reminder:

I’m not gonna waste time going over the set up. Instead, I’m going to dive right in to what worked, and what didn’t, in The MCU’s first and highly anticipated new Disney+ shows. So, what did I think of the first 3 episodes of WandaVision? Does it live up to the hype? Was this the right project It kick off Phase 4 for Marvel Studios? Honestly, I don’t know yet.

The Big Problem: Weekly Episode Release Vs. Binge Format

My biggest take away from WandaVision was that streaming services desperately need to go back to the format that made them so intriguing and unique in the first place: Release all episodes of their original programming on the premiere date! It was so exciting things when a new season of Daredevil or Stranger Things, would premiere on Netflix and I could watch the entire story at my leisure! It was like getting to watch a trilogy of your favorite movie series over one weekend!

I understand that when Disney+ launched, the service needed to build up its library of original content and it’s subscriber base. The concern being, that people would just sign up, watch the first season of The Mandalorian over the weekend, and then cancel the subscription. Disney+ is successful enough now that it can move beyond that way of thinking and remember what drew people to streaming services in the first place.

    For a series like WandaVision, the weekly format actually hurts the show. In fact, it’s WandaVision’s biggest weakness. Each episode of the show is formatted to replicate and pay homage to a classic sitcom era. Episode 1 feels very much like The Dick Van Dyke Show, while Episode 2 feels more like Bewitched, with Episode 3 turning into something like The Brady Bunch or Happy Days. While this is certainly extremely unique and innovative for a superhero story, it’s too earnest for its own good. Let’s be real, we don’t really give a shit about the sitcom format, we’re all here to watch this series because we know this is The MCU and something extremely strange afoot. We care about the mystery of WHY Wanda and Vision are stuck in this weird TV sitcom reality. The series takes the sitcom gimmick that they’re replicating each week, way too seriously. It seems like the creators didn’t just use the aesthetic and style of a 1960s sitcom, they also seem to be following the rules of storytelling that you’d see in a sitcom in the 60’s, which isn’t all that interesting. Like I mentioned before, innovations like this need to continue for superhero films to survive and thrive. But WandaVision would’ve been much better served leaning into the creepy and unsettling aspects of the whole TV sitcom format, more like something out of The Twilight Zone. As it stands we get a pretty earnest and straightforward series that’s basically a sitcom staring Wanda and Vision, with hints of something darker and mysterious in the background. How did the characters find themselves in this strange TV world? Who or what is doing this? Is it Wanda herself? The answers to those mysteries are what we’re here to see. 

Know Your Audience & Why They’re Watching

They don’t have to show their hand right away, but we want more than just a silly sitcom with hints of something more interesting down the line. It couldn’t help but make me think of the film, Natural Born Killers, where Juliette Lewis’ abusive upbringing is shown in flashback form as a 60’s style TV sitcom, complete with a laugh track, while keeping the dark and twisted nature of her family life in tact. Seeing a horrible childhood juxtaposed with the wholesome sitcoms of yesteryear is what made that sequence so disquieting. Even Supernatural once did a crossover episode with Scooby-Doo, without ever compromising the tone or identity of either series.

    WandaVision would’ve been much better served to up the creepy factor by 100%. The sitcom format would work so much better if we were more frequently reminded of the unsettling truth that something sinister is causing this. As it stands it’s basically just a sitcom that occasionally reminds us that there’s something unusual and dangerous at the heart of these events. There are more creepy and disturbing moments, as well as more overt clues about what’s actually be going on, in Episodes 2 & 3. Which is why I think the 2nd and 3rd installment are so much stronger than the 1st. Now it feels like we’re going to have to sit through weeks of a sitcom that we’re not really interested in watching, to get to the part of the story that really matters, which will probably be around the last three episodes. I’m old enough to have watched many of these old shows when they aired in the “Nick-At-Night” days. A large part of the audience won’t even know what show’s WandaVision is drawing inspiration from.

    If the whole season dropped at once, the first 3 episodes would seem so much more charming and intriguing because we wouldn’t have to wait weeks to find out where this is going. We could dive right in and finish it out over a weekend. After all, it’s only six hours of content. Having said all that, I definitely like the show. Despite some of the creative choices that I disagree with, WandaVision is as fun as something like this could possibly be. Mainly because Wanda and Vision are such great characters and Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany are excellent actors who really give it their all. They’re a fun duo to watch and they have great chemistry as a couple. 

The bottom line is I encourage any superhero or MCU fan to check out WandaVision, just know what you’re getting into first. This is not an action adventure series. It’s very deliberate and with it’s own methodical and sometimes slow pacing. Which can be frustrating at times, but the potential of the underlying mystery as well as the performances by the excellent cast, will keep me coming back for more each week.

Like any good Marvel fan, or fanatic in my case, I kept my eyes peeled for Easter Eggs and believe me there are a ton of them! Wanda and Vision both have such storied history‘s as characters that there is a lot of storytelling there for the show to pull from. There are a lot of cool callbacks, Easter Eggs, and clues to previous MCU projects, comic book characters and storylines, as well as upcoming shows and films, in The MCU.

Easter Eggs, Clues, & References

 First of all, Wanda seems to have undergone a massive power upgrade. She can seemingly create and manipulate matter at will. Conjuring up objects from thin and altering existing ones. There’s a neat end credits sequence at the end of each episode with a musical score that’s creepy as hell and works as a unsettling contrast to the bright and bubbly nature of everything that comes before. It reminded me quite a bit of how Wanda’s powers would manifest in miniseries House of M with these sort of blocks. When she creates or destroys, something it comes apart or is put back together again small squares much like what we see in the end credits.

All 3 episodes drop huge clues that the people monitoring Wanda and Vision are S.W.O.R.D., we see their symbol in the van monitoring thing at the end of Episode 1 and it appears again in on a red and yellow toy helicopter that Wanda finds in Episode 2.

From Episode 1, the SWORD insignia appears on the notebook in front of the monitor, as well as on the computer screen on the left, in the bottom right corner of the screen

The inclusion of SWORD is extremely interesting because they’re basically SHIELD for space. They monitor extraterrestrials threats to Earth and other dangers to the planet from outer space. This would imply that something extraterrestrial is at play in WandaVision, which opens up all sorts of fun possibilities. In one of the Spider-Man: Far From Home post-credits scenes Nick Fury is seen on an alien ship or space station, which led many to theorize that he was setting up S.W.O.R.D.

Wanda makes a new friend in Episode 2, a young African-American woman who introduces herself as Geraldine. They meet while attending a planning event on a sunny afternoon, under gazebo filled with other women from the community.

Geraldine (Real Name: Monica Rambeau AKA Spectrum)

They’re all there to discuss the upcoming talent show fundraiser that the town is putting on. Right off the bat, there’s some really weird shit going down at this gathering of happy homemakers. Within her first few seconds of interacting with Wanda, Geraldine looks almost frightened and appears confused as to why she’s even at this meeting in the first place. As if she just woke up from an upsetting and disorienting dream. In Episode 3, we see that she’s wearing a necklace bearing the insignia of SWORD . She may introduce herself as Geraldine, but we know better. She is in fact Monica Rambeau a.k.a. Spectrum. We’ve actually encountered Monica in The MCU already, we met her as a child, in Captain Marvel. Monica is the daughter of Carol Danvers’ best friend. Monica is clearly following in the footsteps of the woman she look up to since she was a little girl. The next time we see her in The MCU outside of WandaVision will be as a full fledged superhero in Captain Marvel 2 which will likely involve SWORD in someway.

  Someone, presumably SWORD,  are tattempting to contact Wanda through the radio. You very clearly hear them asking her “Who is doing this to you, Wanda?”The voice on the radio is Agent Woo who we first met in Ant-Man and The Wasp.

Wanda and Vision perform a magic act in the town’s talent show school fundraiser. One of the props they use in their act, “The Cabinet of Mysteries”, has a symbol on it that looks a lot like The Mind Stone. An artifact key to the origins of both Wanda and Vision.

The commercial in Episodes 2 is for a watch made by Baron Strucker, who gave Wanda and her brother their powers. The watch also has the HYDRA symbol and says HYDRA on its face. Episode 3 has a commercial for a bath product made by HYDRA

In Episode 2, Wanda goes from normal to what looks to be about six months pregnant in a matter of moments. In episode three she gives birth to twin boys named Billy and Tommy. Shortly after their birth Wanda tells Geraldine (AKA Monica) that she was a twin and she had a brother named Pietro. This causes Geraldine to snap out of it for a moment and mention how Pietro was killed by Ultron.

At which point Wanda makes note of Geraldine’s SWORD necklace and hurls her out of town, back into the real world. She’s intercepted by what looks to be a massive government operation that seems to be monitoring the strange dome that has encased this town. Which reminded me a lot of the facility SHIELD constructs around Thor’s hammer, Mijonir, when it falls to Earth in the first Thor film. 

It was also really cool just to hear Ultron referenced in Episode 3. He was an underrated villain who I’ve always wanted to see return. I had a theory that Ultron could somehow be involved in the events of WandaVision. I’ll just hold out hope that he’ll possibly make an appearance by the end of the season, who knows?

    In the comics, Wanda and Vision have twin children (Billy and Tommy), who are later revealed to be constructs created by Wanda’s powers. The knowledge that her children were never “real” eventually leads to her mental break with reality that results in the deaths of Hawkeye, Scott Lang, and Vision. The fallout causes The Avengers to briefly disband. Which would seem to suggest that these children will likely be a very important part of the series going forward.

Left: Billy AKA Wiccan; Right: Tommy AKA Speed

  In the comics, It’s later revealed that the children were in fact real and survived. Eventually becoming the Young Avengers known as Speed (Tommy) and Wiccan (Billy), whose powers mirror those of Wanda and her brother Pietro AKA Quicksilver. Other members of Young Avengers include Scott Lang’s daughter, Cassie, who will develop size changing powers in Ant-Man 3. As well as, Hawkeye’s protege Kate Bishop, who will be making her debut in the upcoming Hawkeye Disney+ series with Hailee Steinfeld in the role.

Expect us to continue covering WandaVision as the series continues!

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-Paul