When Firefly first premiered, I knew the series was going to be something special. Joss Whedon was at the helm, very talented and good-looking cast, wicked cool concept. Of course it wasn’t until I saw the first episode that I realized how special this little series about cowboys in space truly was. A major part of that success was a little cowgirl known as Zoe Washburne.
While watching a key scene in the season finale of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., I quipped, “You can’t take the Skye from me.”
That’s when it clicked. I didn’t see it before during season one, but with enough new players introduced in season two, it now made sense. The spirit of Firefly’s Browncoats lives on in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
When Love Actually premiered in cinemas over a decade ago, who knew it would be one of the most influential — and divisive — holiday movies ever made? You might think I’m being hyperbolic, but this movie is consistently one of the best selling DVDs and blu-rays every year1 and gains legions of new fans from multiple airings on cable and Netflix — though not for much longer. It’s also responsible for spawning an entire sub-genre of similar romantic comedies like Valentine’s Day and the equally awful New Year’s Eve. Love it or hate it, this flick evokes extreme feelings either way.
So why am I writing about Love Actually? It’s not like romantic comedy is a topic that’s covered on the NOC. Well, for one thing, most of the movie’s sprawling cast of British actors have gone on to become icons of the Comic-Con set. The stars of today’s biggest genre properties can trace their lineage back to this flick, and it’s amazing.
I can scarcely imagine a worse waste of digital celluloid: flying spears thrown from thin, gangly limbs, a star-spangled miniskirt threatening wardrobe malfunctions for two and a quarter hours, unblemished ivory skin strained under gold and platinum body armor, practicality be damned. Wonder Woman the movie — fangirl nirvana, fanboy nightmare. Whenever people discuss the needless parade of White Anglo-Saxon Protestants who populate superhero movies’ starring roles, part of me appreciates their boredom with the obnoxious identity politics at play; what was The Avengers but a classic fraternity bro-down with human growth hormone, outdated mythology and colorful titanium tossed in for kicks?