SDCC 2017: Rounding up Comic-Con's biggest trailers
San Diego Comic-Con: it's internationally known as nerd paradise, where a few lucky and devoted fans get inside information on their favorite franchises. The rest of us can merely wait for trailers and movie news to slowly trickle out from its source. While SDCC was first created in 1970 to celebrate comic books, science fiction and fantasy culture, it now covers a variety of pop culture. SDCC always offers up new information about ongoing Marvel projects, but it has also expanded to cover areas like video games, anime and animation. Some panels even discuss more serious topics, such as diversity in comics or portraying minorities in film. Recess doesn’t quite have an inside look at these panels, but it can fill you in on some of the greater highlights of the convention.
“Kingsman: The Golden Circle” looks like it will live up to its predecessor
“Kingsman: The Secret Service” exceeded the expectations of audiences everywhere. Initially seen as a spoof on James Bond, the film’s wacky storyline, creative action scenes and interesting characters created a uniquely entertaining action movie. “Kingsman: The Golden Circle” looks like it might be every bit as good. The second trailer for the film, released at Comic-Con, reveals the existence of the American Statesman as a counterpart to the British Kingsman. While the Kingsman is all James Bond knockoffs, the Statesman strives to recreate old Western cowboys, or at least revive lasso use. Channing Tatum, Halle Berry and Julianne Moore join an already incredible cast, and the film promises at least the same level of witty dialogue and improbable weapons as the first movie.
“Stranger Things 2” is adequately spooky, but where is Eleven?
Another sequel to a well-received show, “Stranger Things 2” picks up where “Stranger Things” left off, with the characters trying to move on from the dramatic events of the first season. Mike, Dustin and Lucas, finally rejoined by Will, are now into a video game called Dragon’s Lair, but that doesn’t stop Will from seeing back into the Upside Down, the twisted, haunted version of reality he was trapped in the previous season. The trailer seems promising, featuring a charming combination of suspense and ‘80s nostalgia. The one downside is that Eleven, the key character from season one, is only featured in the last moment of the trailers. Considering the finale of the last season, this brief cameo is fitting but may point to a smaller role for Eleven in the second season. Eleven’s mystical powers and lovable inability to fit into regular society drove the first season, and her separation from the rest of the cast may point to problems for this season.
“Proud Mary” is the latest in a line of female-starring action movies
San Diego Comic-Con remains driven by science fiction and fantasy franchises, but there is room for the occasional film based in reality to make a splash. “Proud Mary” stars Taraji P. Henson as an assassin, shown getting ready for her day before picking out an impression selection of guns. The trailer is impeccably put together, using the song “Proud Mary” to overlay the action sequences before Henson introduces herself as “Mary” at the end. In a Hollywood repeatedly criticized for being too white, the movie gives talented black actors like Henson a chance to shine. “Proud Mary” looks to be an action-packed film with both style and substance.
“Justice League” features strong characters but lacks a coherent plot
Action movie trailers tend either to reveal the entire plot of the movie or consist of no plot at all, and the “Justice League” trailer is certainly the latter. Some mysterious horned creature drops out of the sky at Themyscira, but little other information is given as to what the heroes will be fighting. The heroes themselves will hopefully shine in this movie. Affleck’s Batman continues to be lackluster, but Ezra Miller’s Flash is funny and exactly what we’d all act like if asked to be part of a superhero team. “Wonder Woman” became the highest grossing film of the summer, leading “Justice League” to schedule extensive reshoots to include more of the character. Diana Prince is indeed prominently featured in the “Justice League” trailer, covering up her secret identity to her coworker at the Louvre and fighting the villains of the movie. Aquaman and Cyborg also make appearances but have relatively few lines or backstory, prompting the question of if they’ll have any backstory at all. Even if Wonder Woman is given the larger role she deserves, “Justice League” seems to be shaping up to be little more than a typical superhero movie.
“Thor: Ragnarok” puts a hilarious twist on the end of the world
Marvel has finally realized that its strength is in its humor, and this fact is evident in the trailer for “Thor: Ragnarok.” Although the movie seems to begin with Thor’s home of Asgard being destroyed, it quickly turns into a buddy cop movie with Thor and Hulk. The trailer alternates between the two main characters’ banter and the assembly of a team to take back Asgard from the goddess of death. The villain comes across as rather typical and one-dimensional, fitting into the ever-growing cast of Marvel bad guys (with the one great exception of Loki), but the movie still feels promising due to its embrace of comedic effect, something that was lacking in the first two “Thor” movies.