After taking last week off, we’re back with a new Amusement Park Podcast. Chris and I look at the final Avengers: Endgame trailer for clues, react to Disney re-hiring James Gunn for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, review Netflix’s Triple Frontier, and wonder if “streaming fatigue” is real.
Difficulty lining our schedules up and what appeared to be a slow news week were the primary reasons for us not recording last week. But even if we had recorded, we probably would’ve missed the Avengers: Endgame trailer and news of Disney re-hiring James Gunn for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. Hopefully, you’ll still want to hear what we have to say on those subjects, along with some thoughts on streaming “subscription fatigue” among consumers.
Captain Marvel has arrived! And with that, it feels like 2019 is finally beginning at the movies. The Oscars are done, people are seeing or have seen last year’s awards contenders, and wannabe blockbusters such as Alita: Battle Angel have fizzled out.
We do get into spoilers on our special episode of the Amusement Park Podcast. But that part of the discussion begins about halfway through the show, at the 21:40 mark. So be warned! And please come back and compare your thoughts on the movie after you’ve seen it.
The original plan was to build this week’s Amusement Park Podcast around reviewing Captain Marvel, which figured to be the big geek culture event of the week. Then, news of Arrow announcing it would end after Season 8 broke and there was suddenly another topic to which we had to devote some significant time.
So our Captain Marvel review and reaction will be in a separate, special episode.
Eight seasons is a formidable run for any TV show. But it seems especially notable for a superhero TV show, and Arrow opened the door for a lot of other superhero programming to walk through — and that’s just on the CW alone with The Flash, Legends of Tomorrow, Black Lightning and Supergirl anchoring that network. Arrow isn’t the show it once was — ultimately, it may have been too much of a Batman clone — and it’s probably bowing out at the right time.
We also dive into the Steven Spielberg vs. Netflix debate. I see where Spielberg is coming from. Someone needs to stick up for movie theaters and the experience they create. However, people increasingly prefer to watch movies at home if there’s a streaming option. To deny that is to deny the current moviegoing reality.
And I tip my cap to Seth Everett, who runs his own geek culture podcast titled Hall of Justice. It’s the show we hope the Amusement Park Podcast can come close to being someday. But Seth is also a sports guy who likes to let his geek flag fly, which is pretty cool. What a pleasant surprise to see him as a guest on DC Universe’s DC Daily show last week, and he interviewed the cast on his podcast.
I’ve always been a fan of the Academy Awards, even when I wasn’t as much of a movie buff as I am now. Once upon a time, I let the Oscars dictate most of the movies I went to see. Now, it’s the other way around: I hope the Oscars reflect what I felt were the best movies of the past year.
For various reasons, I wasn’t as excited about the Oscars this year as I usually am. I didn’t even make an effort to see all of the Best Picture candidates, which I typically do. I had plenty of opportunity to see The Favourite, Green Book, and Roma, however. (And I’ll see them in the weeks to come.)
But there was still plenty to talk about with the Oscars, notably the show not having a host and a crowd-pleasing blockbuster like Black Panther being one of the Best Picture nominees.
We also dissected the Season 3 finale of True Detective. Overall, I enjoyed the season, especially Stephen Dorff’s performance as Roland West. The mystery was intriguing enough, though not the driving storyline for the season, as it turned out.
With the Mister Rogers documentary, Won’t You Be My Neighbor, debuting on both HBO and PBS last week, we thought it would be fun to talk about on the Amusement Park Podcast. I saw the movie last summer and thought it was one of the best movies of 2018, but Chris is just coming around to it now.
We also talk about the ideal streaming setup as more networks and studios create their own over-the-top services to compete with Netflix, Hulu and Amazon. If you want to (or already have) ditched cable or satellite, which are the best services to sign up for that provide the content you’ll want to watch?
I’m probably long overdue to make some decisions on streaming subscriptions. I’ve basically signed up for everything, yet still maintained a cable subscription. Whenever I think Hulu is something I could live without, they launch an original series or documentary that gets me thinking it’s worth keeping. I also subscribe to DC Universe and the upcoming Criterion Channel. I’ll surely sign up for Disney+ once that launches.
Where I’ll probably make a cut is with sports. I shouldn’t admit this as someone who’d still like to work in sports media, but I don’t watch as much baseball as I used to and the Detroit Tigers likely won’t be worth many of summer hours, so I’ll probably ditch MLB.TV. That almost seems inconceivable to me (and I wrote it off as a work expense). But that’s nearly $150 I can save right there.
We’ve reached the 25-episode mark on The Amusement Park Podcast! (Actually, we’ve done 26 episodes, including a Special Edition. We haven’t done any of those since, probably because it’s not always easy to find time to record, and I’m not sure we’ll do so again.)
This time around, we talk about the Avengers: Endgame and Toy Story 4 Super Bowl teasers, in addition to a couple of other commercials. We also review Amazon’s Hanna pilot, which was available for 24 hours after The Big Game, and look back at Game of Thrones Season 1, trying to refresh ourselves on everything before Season 8 premieres in April. And we do some quick hits on a variety of topics, something we may do regularly on future podcasts.
One thing I didn’t mention during our discussion of Hanna was how much I enjoyed the soundtrack for the original 2011 movie. The music by The Chemical Brothers was a vital part of the film, setting the visuals to a beat that fit the story’s quick pace. Or in the case of “Hanna’s Theme,” the soundtrack was a play on the coming-of-age aspect of the main character’s story.
Also worth mentioning was how much of a departure this movie was for director Joe Wright, whose filmography is largely filled with dramas like Pride & Prejudice, Atonement and Darkest Hour. But there wasn’t really a place for that during the conversation.
On the latest Amusement Park Podcast, we react to news of the next Batman movie being set for a Summer 2021 release and a younger Bruce Wayne meaning Ben Affleck will no longer play the role. We also review the entire Season 2 of The Punisher after delving into the first six episodes last week. And we review the latest DC animated movie, Reign of the Supermen.
Previously, I’ve just posted the same blurb and link to the podcast that you can find at the Amusement Park Podcast website. But I’d like to try and offer a bit more here at The Casselbloggy, especially for those who take the time to click over and read. I think it could be a good opportunity to discuss topics that didn’t make the cut or stuff that I intended to include but forgot to mention while we were recording.
That’s where I’d like to go this week because it’s bugging me that I forgot to talk about Punisher star Jon Bernthal and his voice for Frank Castle. I’ve seen Bernthal in several other movies and TV shows like The Walking Dead, Sicario, Show Me a Hero and The Ghost Writer, but had forgotten what his actual speaking voice sounds like. So when I watched some talk show clips of him, it was jolting to me how different he sounded from Frank Castle.
I know; it’s called acting! But it’s still impressive to me (and far more effective than, say, Christian Bale’s Batman voice) and a reminder of how deeply Bernthal lost himself in that role. It’s a damn shame that he probably won’t play The Punisher anymore.