March 15th, 2002

Self-Portrait 3

O Brother, Where art Thou?

Rather fitting, that headline, seeing as my plan for tonight is to head over to the Ferg and see The Man Who Wasn't There. I was going to do it last night, but I got busied cleaning my room and doing some laundry. I just hope I can find somebody to go with me. I hate going to movies by myself.

Been kinda busy at work this week. But, like most weeks where I just get kinda busy, I don't have anything to do now.

At least the good movies are starting to come out. Blade 2 comes out next weekend, and I can hardly wait. I'm more jazzed for this than I am for Spider-Man or Star Wars, but that could be because I only have to wait another week to get to see it.

You know, I think the reason the first Blade movie was so good was because they didn't really try to stay totally faithful to the character, mainly because, I think, no one had ever really done a definitive version of Blade for them to be faithful to. When he was created in the 70's, he was just another one of Marvel's handful of jive-talking Blaxploitation characters, albeit one with a supernatural bent. Part of me is certain that the only reason they never had Blade go up against Blacula is because somebody at Marvel figured that a book where both the protagonist and antagonist were black would never sell. But I digress. Anyway, Marvel being Marvel, Blade pretty much stayed a jive-talking Blaxploitation character through the 70's, the 80's, and the early 90's, where somebody finally decided he needed to be updated. Most of Marvel's major black characters were updated sometime in the early 90's, and Blade was pulled out of mothballs to go with them. His grammar was made not quite so atrocious, he didn't call anybody turkey anymore, and they gave him an "angry black man" chip on his shoulder and a flat-top fade to go with it. That was pretty much their standard "Revamp the Black Character" package. As a complete aside, I think Rhodey managed to avoid the "angry black man" (hereinafter referred to as ABM) thing, but other than that he got the full treatment. He also got upgraded from Tony Stark's "yassa-boss" to his "trusted friend" and got a girlfriend beside (a snowflake, at that) and his own book, so I think he made out pretty well.

Anyway, Blade. The ABM thing didn't work all that well for him, seeing as the only friends he had were two white guys. One good thing that did happen for Blade was that someone finally realized that his name was "Blade" and maybe somebody should give him an actual knife, or something. Up until that point he had wooden stakes that were shaped like knives and that was it. He vanished into limbo after about a year, and then fast forward to 1997 when Wizard notices that someone's making a Blade movie, and it not only has an actual star in it, but it's an old-school, R-rated violent action-adventure flick. It's like someone at New Line went "hey, here's this old Marvel character that nobody's touched in half a decade. What if we give him a sword, make him a mostly-human-part-vampire kung fu badass, and get Wesley Snipes to play him? GOLD!" Actually, now that I think about it, for the most part that is what happened. I think the reason Marv Wolfman and Gene Colan were so pissed about the movie is because it did the character they created much better than they ever did.

Okay. Certainly didn't mean for this to turn into a treatise on Blade, but there you go.