Greetings, mail-keteers! Besides figuring out Marvel’s Inhumans plans (as well as the TV future of Ms. Marvel), we’re going to learn how much input DC Comics’ Geoff Johns has on the WB movies, what the most unsatisfying part of Game of Thrones is, and why Syfy loves handjobs! (Reminder: Somehow I technically get paid for this.)


Inhuman Trafficking

BL:

So Marvel’s Inhumans film has been delayed indefinitely, all while Agents of Shield has been making a lot of headway with their Inhuman storyline, delving way more into the backstory of the Inhumans than I thought they ever would.

This does make me wonder if perhaps Marvel has decided that the Inhumans are better suited for the small screen than an actual film. I mean by the time the film would have come out we would have been years into Inhuman backstory on Shield, and while the films don’t give the shows much love, Marvel runs a tight enough ship that I can’t see them willing to disregard and make a mess of the continuity Agents of Shield is making, even if they aren’t willing to acknowledge it in the main films.

So I guess my question is, do you think this spells the end for the Inhuman films and that we should expect, eventually the Medusa, Blackbolt, and maybe even Kamala Khan will make their debut appearances on Agents of Shield for the years to come?

Let me break down this excellent series of questions for clarity’s sake.

1) Do I think Marvel has given up on the Inhumans movie?

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Yes, for at least this decade. Marvel Studios can only make so many movies a year, and I guarantee they would much rather use that time, money and effort on making a Spider-Man movie, or getting RDJ to agree to a fourth Iron Man movie, or yet another sequel. Mainly because that has a much better chance of making way more money than Marvel’s weirder X-Men.

2) Should Marvel keep the Inhumans just on TV?

I think this will be the result. But the real question is…

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3) Should Marvel bring the real Inhumans—Black Bolt, Crystal, Lockjaw the bigass teleporting dog—to Agents of SHIELD?

Personally, I say no, because Agents of SHIELD does not have the money to do the Inhumans justice. Did you see last week’s episode, where two Kree soldiers visited (long story) and they looked they stepped off a Syfy series? They were fine… for TV. If AoS tried to put the main Inhumans on-screen, they would barely be able to use their powers. It’s not worth it. On the plus side, Marvel won’t do this, because they still want the option to make an Inhumans movie somewhere down the line.

4) If Marvel makes an Inhuman movie, it’ll respect what’s going on in Agents of SHIELD, right?

HAHAHAHAHAHA NO. Well, maybe. The movie—any of the Marvel movies, really—won’t go out of its way to contradict the show (hell, they can’t even be bothered to acknowledge the show, hence the complete lack of anyone mentioning the fact that hundreds of people with alien DNA and superpowers have suddenly appeared across the planet in Civil War), but if any of the movies has an idea that one of the shows should have rendered impossible, the show is screwed. The movies make so much more money than the shows it’s crazy.

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Say I’m wrong, and Marvel Studios’ head honcho does give up on an Inhumans movie and gives Black Bolt and his crew to Agents of SHIELD. AoS casts ’em, they have adventures, etc. Three years later, Feige says, “You know what? I want to make that Inhumans movie after all.” There will be a big budget Inhumans with famous movie stars and new costumes and new sets and it’ll look a million times better, and it’ll be up to the poor AoS writers to try to somehow mesh their version with the movie. Canon is good, but money > canon. Always.

5) Could Kamala Khan appear on Agents of SHIELD?

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Actually, I think there’s a chance here. There have been rumblings of a Ms. Marvel TV show before—she may be the most popular new comics character of the last three years—and if they were going to make one, introducing her on AoS is a no-brainer, her being an Inhuman and all. Unfortunately, if Marvel is so concerned about—let’s charitably call it “mass appeal”—that the company literally cast Tilda Swinton as an Asian man, then I doubt it’s in any hurry to cast a woman of color (let alone a Muslim) as the lead in one of its TV shows.

On the plus side, Marvel is getting so much shit for its lack of diversity that it may actually decide to make a Ms. Marvel show purely to get people off its back. Sure, it would cost a few million, but Marvel pays a lot more than that for regular PR. Even if the Ms. Marvel show tanked, it would earn the company a ton of good will, which it could then spend on casting more white men. Win-win!


Too Many Games

Martin:

There has been something bothering me recently about GoT. I am growing a little weary of the show’s setup lately. While I agree with you that this episode was fantastic and full of something gratifying with every turn, I feel like it loses something by cramming so much. With a different story every 10 minutes I feel as though I watched a few minisodes instead of an hour long epic, and I feel a bit robbed. It’s like reading 3 pages of one book, 3 pages of a different one, 3 of another, and so forth. I would rather see just two different stories unfold further in one episode and wait two or even three weeks to return to them than to cram six snippets into one hour. Thoughts?

I’d say this is less a problem with Game of Thrones than with where Game of Thrones is at currently. Right now, we’re at the part of the narrative where the story has pretty much expanded as much as it can. Let me explain.

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In the series premiere, the only locations were essentially Winterfell, where the king visited, and Pentos, with Daenerys and Viserys. By season two, the show had swapped Pentos for Dany’s Essos Vacation, Robb Stark was on the move, the Night’s Watch was roaming north of the Wall, Stannis was pouting in Dragonstone, Brienne and Jaime were road-tripping it, Bran and Rickon were on the move, and so forth. Then’s there’s the Tyrells and the Martells and the Wildlings and everybody else.

My point is that the narrative has continually fractured since the beginning, as any epic should. While a 1000-page book can handle this with aplomb, a TV show has more problems: if you don’t check it with the storylines, you run the risk of audiences forgetting about them or worse, not caring. I can promise the showrunners agonized about the decision to leave Bran out of season five, but were forced to by virtue of the fact they had no storylines for Bran that didn’t involve him using his powers to get answers to some major GoT mysteries, and they couldn’t afford to give those yet.

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Anyway! The good news is that we’re at the point where the disparate characters and storylines are going to inevitably come back together. It’s already begun a little, but by the end of season six I promise we’ll have seen a lot of characters start… well, let’s just say “interacting” with each other, and other characters and plotlines… get “resolved.” So don’t worry, sweet summer child—this problem will increasingly be resolved on its own as Game of Thrones increasingly approaches its final episode.


Claw & Order

Nathan B.:

How does Wolverine move his wrists with his claws sheathed?

They’re stored in his forearms. I know that seems somehow wrong, and when the first X-Men movie showed an X-ray of Logan’s arm it showed the blades coming over the top of his hand (above). It was wrong. The reason we know if was wrong is because if it were correct Wolverine would make his hands explode into shreds of flesh and blood every time he flexed his wrist.

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If you’re now wondering how Wolverine’s claws can get all the way from his forearms into the tops of his hands, yet remain secure enough they don’t get ripped out of his hands anytime he tries to cut anything harder than his flesh, then you may choose one of two answers: “mutant” or “comics.” Enjoy!


Photo by Gary Malerba/Invision for DC Comics/AP Images.

Long Johns

John L.:

With all the piling on of Zack Snyder for the state of the DCCU, why does Geoff Johns get off scot-free? He’s the Chief Creative Officer of DC! His job is to oversee the production of all the films and TV. He’s the one connecting the dots between the films. Snyder only directs a few of them, not all of them. Yet, Johns is tweeting from the sets of all the films. Johns is directly involved in the creative development and storylines of all of these films, and he’s even writing one with Ben Affleck. But why seldom is heard a discouraging word about him?

Well, mainly because he’s the Chief Creative Officer of DC Comics. Yes, he absolutely consults on all the DC movies, and is listed as an Executive Producer on the last several of them. But remember, Stan Lee is also listed as an Executive Producer on all the Marvel films, and you know how much work or consulting he doing? His cameo filming, and that’s it. An executive producer can be insanely hands-on or it could be ceremonial, but they both get credited equally.

Now, if you’re thinking that as a consultant Geoff Johns has had practically any creative control over Warner Bros. DC movies, you are almost certainly mistaken. I’ve talked before about how Warner Bros. neither likes nor respects the comics that provide the source material for their films; they only like the money it helps them make. This is why when WB makes DC movies, it lets the director do whatever the hell he wants with it. Sometimes you get good Batman like Chris Nolan’s version, sometimes you get Murder Batman like Zack Snyder’s version. But neither version is particularly accurate to the Batman that has existed over the past 80 years.

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Johns can make suggestions and offer help, but I doubt either WB or Zack Snyder listen very hard. “Um, has this guy made movies that regularly gross over $500 million? Nope! He just writes comics. We all know better than him!” The idea that maybe these movies would make more money if they took the advice of the guy who understands the character and the medium from which all these movies spawned never even occurs to them.

Notably, this may have changed: supposedly Geoff Johns and Ben Affleck are writing the script for the upcoming solo Batman movie together, and supposedly Zack Snyder and David Goyer aren’t allowed to mess with it. So Johns may have his chance to see what he can do! (Although chances are Academy Award-winning director Ben Affleck also gets final say in that partnership, too.) If this Batman movie is a critical and commercial success, Johns might find himself with a lot more influence than he does now.


You Gotta Hand It to ‘Em

Cathy H.:

What pisses me off is what Syfy is doing to all its programming. They are constantly putting way to much sex in their series. I mean I understand when it comes to Lost Girl because it’s based on her being a succubus. I am far from a prude, and love any good porn as much as the next person. The gratuitous sex scenes are getting to be too much. A sex scene is great if it adds to the storyline or has a purpose is fine. For example, [Defiance’s] Datak Tar getting a handjob while in prison, that was too much! It makes me wonder if Syfy thinks all the sex will pull in more nerds to their channel just to watch the sex. More of “you know cause they never get laid” mentality.

Yeah, Syfy got really into handjobs there for a while, didn’t it? If it makes you feel better, I doubt that Syfy is sexxxing up its original programming because it thinks it will grab the attention of poor nerd who have never known the erotic touch of a partner. Nerd is no longer a synonym for virgin, nor has it been for quite some time, and the executives wouldn’t have to just be out-of-touch with the status of their original intended audience, but also somehow be completely unaware of all current trends in entertainment. (Sure, it’s possible, but it’s still pretty unlikely.)

Instead, I think Syfy is sexxxing up its shows in hopes of attracting the attention of just about anyone, really. Not just nerds! Syfy hopes some salacious content will also make their scifi series a bit more mature, and thus be more compelling. The problem is that 1) as always, when people want to see some sexxxiness there are far better options than Syfy original programming, so why bother competing and 2) even if Syfy was somehow the only sexxxxy game in town, no one wants to see Tony Curran, dressed as some sort of alien space albino, getting a handy through a chain-link fence.


Apocalypse Now-ish

A Concerned Student:

Mr. Postman,

Did Rob Bricken’s promotion to editor of io9 cause the end of the Postal Apocalypse? Like the substitute who gets promoted to a full-time teacher and has to stop showing movies all day?

Oh, I think he’ll be fine.


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