Posted in Geeky Stuff, Movies

The Phoenix has Risen…and it was Worth the Wait! (Dark Phoenix review)

Let me start off by saying that this was probably the movie that I’ve most anticipated in my entire life.

Since I discovered that it was happening about a year ago, I was absolutely over the moon excited. I counted down the days, I squealed every time I saw the poster by the movie theater, I made my parents take a picture of me next to said movie poster(s), set all my wallpapers to the various posters (which all belong in the MoMA, honestly)…you get the idea. I was a very, very excited little mutant.

As the reviews started pouring in, I got a little worried. I told myself, time and time again, not to listen to the critics. I also tried to tell myself not to expect another First Class or X2, but…I couldn’t really help myself up until the end.

Then, I saw it on Saturday night. I haven’t felt such a surge of joy in a long, long time, not like I did when the “feature presentation” screen finally came up.

And?

It didn’t deserve such hate-filled reviews from the critics. Nor did it deserve as high praise as some of the other films. But even still, an incredible film, and a beautiful ending to a masterful franchise.

*SOME SPOILERS AHEAD–I ADVISE THAT YOU DON’T READ THIS IF YOU HAVEN’T SEEN DARK PHOENIX*

 

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“I Want All of These Posters Framed in a Museum” and other stories, part one. This one gives off some wonderfully Stranger Things vibes. 

 

 

Dark Phoenix has always been one of the most revered stories in the whole of the X-Men universe. Full of raw emotion not usually seen in a superhero story (at the time, at least), it was a groundbreaking series that changed the X-Men forever. I doubt any film will ever come close to portraying it perfectly, but Dark Phoenix sure came close. Some alterations were made to the plot, but they made enough sense that they worked with the story. (ex. instead of Jean consuming the mother star of the D’Bari and wiping the entire race out, they nearly went extinct in another way and sought Jean’s Phoenix Force to resurrect what was left of them. A bit cliche, but again, it worked.)

Perfectly paced, stunning FX (especially when it came to Jean), and a plethora of fun Easter Eggs that…yeah, I had a bunch of Chris Pratt-esque, gaping moments in the theater. FOR EXAMPLE…

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–Dazzler. DAAAZZZZZZLEERRRRRR!!! I mean…okay, she’s not my favorite, but it was pretty cool to see her show up briefly after all these X-Men films. Plus, she was originally introduced in the Dark Phoenix Saga, so…nice touch.

 

 

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–GENOSHA. Such a beautiful set. I really liked the approach they took with it–instead of being super high-tech, the structures and buildings were largely made up of scrap parts. Magneto’s house was also really pretty. (I mean, who wouldn’t put it past him to have a matching tea set?)

 

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Another little Easter egg was the addition of Red Lotus (behind Storm) and Selene (in front of Nightcrawler). Though I can see why they were added in, they didn’t have much screen time at all, and seemed almost unneccesary, other than being throwaway allies of Magneto. Selene does look pretty cool, though. I’ll give them that.

 

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What truly made this film, as it did in the comics, was the emotion and the themes of family. Dark Phoenix masterfully captured the raw, unfettered feelings of each of the mutants, showing their conflicts, their sorrow, their anger. Most prominent of all was Jean herself, and her internal struggle with her newfound abilities. I got choked up at the end–no spoilers, but it’s bittersweet, with a heartbreaking loss, followed by something more hopeful. A fitting farewell for the 20th Century Fox X-Men.

 

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And to top it all off, there’s always the classic fun that comes along with watching an X-Men movie. The battle scenes are over-the-top, but in the best way possible. The final one was one of my favorite X-Men battle scenes, period.

No spoilers for this portion, but I’ll tell you one thing–

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The context for that scene is…darkly hilarious.

 

Of course, every movie has it’s flaws. Dark Phoenix was in no way perfect, and I wished we’d had these aspects in it at some point:

 

–Quicksilver never told Magneto that he was his son. It ALMOST happened in Apocalypse, but alas…nada.

–On the subject of estranged relatives, there was a similar problem with Mystique and Nightcrawler. The only hint we get of their mother-son relationship is also in Apocalypse--she gives him some degree of special treatment, but not much beyond the rescue from the mutant fight ring.

–In the other films, there was lots of care taken to make the time period believable. Dark Phoenix is set in 1992, but if we weren’t told that, I’m not sure that I would’ve figured it out. Not even a band shirt or a running soundtrack for Quicksilver. *single tear slides down cheek*

 

But, all in all, Dark Phoenix was worth the long wait. Solid 8.5/10 from me. Go see it, X-Fans–you won’t regret it. Mutant and proud. 😉

Posted in Art, Geeky Stuff, Movies

Fan-Art-Man, Fan-Art-Man, does whatever a…fan art can? (If you couldn’t tell, I’m running out of title ideas.)

Hello, everybody!

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“Kanye’s my main man!” 

Sorry, I had to slip that in somewhere.

 

Alrightly. First of all, happy Martin Luther King Jr day to all! We have so much to thank this incredible man for, and I am eternally grateful for all that he has done to contribute to our society. Thank you.

 

Now…oh, hey! This is the first fan art post of 2019, isn’t it! Niiiiice! Most of these fan arts are technically from December 2018, but we’re just gonna ignore that. WARNING: THIS POST CONTAINS LOTS OF MUTANTS.

Enjoy the fan arts!

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Storm, X-Men Apocalypse. Aside from Nightcrawler, she’s my favorite of the X-Men. 🙂

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Talky-Walky, Black Hammer (shown with a blending stump). You guys also really need to read Black Hammer-it’s OUTRAGEOUSLY weird, but you’ll be better for it.

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My first drawing of 2019! Johann (B.P.R.D.) is looking a little blue here. Poor guy.

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Vision in his human clothes. (Captain America: Civil War).

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Rogue, X2: X-Men United. I watched it again about two weeks ago, and I enjoyed myself waaaaay too much. 😉

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Storm, X2: X-Men United. (See above; I enjoyed myself.)

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“Kurt Wagner, but in the Munich Circus, I was known as the Incredible Nightcrawler!” (X2: X-Men United)

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This isn’t really a fan art, per se, but I still figured that I’d show it here. Behold my spidersona. I based her color scheme/costume largely off of the colors of the Peacock spider. 🙂

 

 

Well, thanks so much for reading, and have a wonderful rest of your day! I’ll be back with a book review tomorrow! 🙂

 

 

Posted in Art, Books, Geeky Stuff, Movies

“Go to madelinetodd.com…they’ve got a new thing called…uh… FR E SH F AN AR TS…*wheezy laughter*”

Yep, I’ve got some FRESH FAN ARTS for you guys!

I haven’t really posted any of my art since late June (oops), and I feel like I’ve improved a lot since then, what with the art class at my school and just a little more experience in general. I’m excited to share some of these with you guys, I hope you enjoy them!

 

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My interpretation of the Darkling from Shadow and Bone.

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A little porg, who is now quite traumatized after seeing his brethren being roasted on a spit by Chewbacca.

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Johann Krauss, in his newest suit. (B.P.R.D.)

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My interpretation of the wonderful Jax, from Heart of Iron. 

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Professor X, X-Men: First Class . (I watched it for the first time in about three or four years in September; I felt the judging eyes of my cats on me as I cried during the “I can’t feel my legs” scene.)

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Mystique, from the new Dark Phoenix trailer. (*LOUD SCREAMING*)

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Nightcrawler, X2: X-Men United. (Which celebrated its 15th anniversary this May! Yay!)

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Abe Sapien, Hellboy (2004). 

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Newt Scamander, The Crimes of Grindelwald. (I saw it a few weeks ago, and it was ASTOUNDING. Certainly didn’t deserve that low of a rating from Rotten Tomatoes.)

 

Well, thank you for sticking around long enough to see more of my art and endure the deluge of book reviews! Once I get some more done, I will definitely post some more. Have a nice day, and stay safe!

Posted in Book Review Tuesday

Book Review Tuesday (9/4/18)-The Rose Society

Hi there, fellow bibliophiles, and welcome to the first Book Review Tuesday of September 2018!

 

To be honest, I should have reviewed this books sooner. Like, a few months sooner. I mean, my review for book one in this series (see 7/17/18) was almost two months ago, so…

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…more like all summer. 

Anyway, I bought this lovely little novel at my favorite bookstore of all time. It was a hard decision between it and at least three other hardcovers of books I’d gotten from the library. But in the end, The Rose Society was a paperback, and I hadn’t read it before. But thank goodness I bought it, because MAN, it was THRILLING! Five big fat stars for this one!

Enjoy the review!

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The Rose Society

Broken by the betrayal of her father and the Young Elites, Adelian Amouteru decides to go rogue. Now under the alias of the White Wolf, she joins her younger sister Violetta and run away from their former home of Kenettra, in search of like-minded souls from which to build an army of their own. With a deadly grudge against the Inquisition Axis, Adelina will stop at nothing to bring justice to the Marked. But will her quest of anger and grief bring her success, or only misery?

 

Well OH MY GOD, that had to be one of the best books I’ve read all summer. No joke.

Not only was this book absolutely riveting and action-packed, but it’s the best out of the Young Elites trilogy. It truly packed a punch, all the way from start to finish. There’s hardly anything not to like about this book. 10/10. 👌

Also, remember how I was thinking about comparing the Young Elites characters to X-Men? Well, I’ve got some more comparisons today as well. 😉

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First off, I feel that Adelina is now more of a combination of Jean Grey and Magneto. Now that *spoiler for Young Elites* Enzo’s been offed, Adelina’s taken on the role of  “Marked bent on the destruction of the Inquisition Axis and all who support them”. Pretty rough ride for her.

 

giphy.gifSecond of all, the Nightcrawler-like character I hinted at in the Young Elites review was…drumroll please…Magiano.

He’s probably one of my favorites out of the cast of characters. Definitely something of a trickster, but he still retains a good heart deep down. Somewhere. If you look hard enough…¯\_(ツ)_/¯

 

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Violetta was most similar to Rogue in terms of powers. From what I remember, they have somewhat like views on their own powers as well.

 

Oh, and speaking of Marvel…

…let’s not confuse Adelina with Bucky Barnes, guys. Just for future reference.

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Get it? White Wolf? Ha ha ha…nobody gets my jokes. Welp. 

Have a happy rest of your day, and keep on reading!

 

 

Posted in Art, Books, Geeky Stuff, Movies, Music

Yer a Fan Art, Harry…

I’m glad to say that I’ve had a lot of time to draw this summer, and I feel that I’ve been improving. Though I don’t have any HP related fan arts for today (sorry), I’ve got lots to show to you guys. Enjoy the fan arts!

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Nightcrawler (Kurt Wagner) (X-Men-Apocalypse)

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Alright, sorry, this is out of order, but about a month after finishing Nightcrawler, I decided to touch him up a little bit. The marker dried out as I was coloring in the streaks in his hair, which was slowly starting to bother me (a lot), so I filled those in, and filled in a little more of his face and lips. Nightcrawler’s definitely my favorite of the X-Men.

 

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Loki, God of Mischief! (Marvel)

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K-2SO (Rogue One)

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The Darkling (the Grisha Trilogy)

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Alina Starkov, Sun Summoner (the Grisha Trilogy)

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This poor little porg, who is permanently traumatized because his brethren were roasted and eaten by Chewbacca. (Hello, darkness, my old friend…) (The Last Jedi)

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Annie Clark (St. Vincent). I recently re-listened to Marry Me and St. Vincent (Deluxe Edition), and rediscovered how much I liked her older music. Let’s not mention MASSEDUCTION. 

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Santigold!

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Viv, daughter of the Vision (Vision)

 

Well, I hope you enjoyed the *onslaught* of fan arts! I’ll try to get in some HP fan arts soon for this glorious occasion. Until next time, everyone!

Posted in Book Review Tuesday

Book Review Tuesday (7/17/18)-The Young Elites

Hi, everyone, and welcome to this week’s Book Review Tuesday!

 

I’ve been getting into a lot of Marie Lu’s works at the moment. I recently re-read Legend, and I’d forgotten how good it was. I read Warcross some time ago, and I’m dying for Wildcard to come out! And so, I figured I needed to satiate myself while waiting for Wildcard (and for Prodigy to be available at the Kindle library…), I decided to start The Young Elites. And I think it might just be my favorite of Marie Lu’s series now!

I LOVED The Young Elites! I found it to be a lot like X-Men, but set in a world like our own in the Middle Ages. And I’m pretty much a sucker for all things, mutant, so this book was an absolute blast for me. I’ve already bought and started the sequel, The Rose Society, and I’m enjoying it even more than book one.

Enjoy the review!

 

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The Young Elites

Ten years ago, the deadly blood fever swept the world, leaving a trail of death in its wake. But for those who survived, it marked them with gifts that seemed to be given by the gods. Some of the marked are hunted down and burned at the stake; others still are worshipped like gods. Adelina Amouteru is one of the marked, and is still figuring out her powers. But after a run-in with the Inquisitorial Axis, the royal guard whose task is to kill all the marked they find, she meets Enzo, another boy marked by the blood fever who can control fire. He introduces her to the Dagger Society, a league of fellow people marked by the fever who seek to reform the cruel tyranny of the royals. But as Adelina starts to control her powers, she realizes that the world may not be as black and white as she previously thought. Whose side is she really on? And what will the consequences be?

 

As I mentioned earlier, this book is very reminiscient of X-Men, which I absolutely adored. Some of the characters reminded me a lot of some of the characters.

Take Enzo, for example. I was getting some serious Magneto vibes from him. But kind of in a good way.

Kind of.

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I also found Adelina to be a lot like Jean Grey, in a way. Probably not so great for her, but they’re both incredibly awesome.

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There were a few more near-parallels in The Young Elites, but those were the two that I felt worked best. As I’m reading The Rose Society, I’ve found that one of the newer characters is starting to look a little like Nightcrawler. OH YEAH.

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MY FAVORITE OF THE X-MEN!!! Kinda freaking out here, guys…

 

That aside, The Young Elites is such a well-written, action packed, gem of a book.

Okay, that was sort of a pun, sorry. You’ll get it once you read it. But what I’m trying to say is that this is an exceptional series. Please read, it please…

 

Well, I hope you have a great rest of the day, and keep on reading awesome books!

 

*BAMF!*