Friday, January 1, 2016

Oh Hell Yes - 10 Things We're Looking Forward to in 2016

Get it? Looking forward? This is going to be Rachel's year on Orphan Black, I can feel it. 
Happy New Year! Hard to believe that 2015 is already over and we're into the next installment. In terms of world news, this year was a total suck. But, in terms of geek news, it wasn't half bad. Sure, we lost some great shows and comics this year - rest in peace, Hannibal and Elektra - but this was the year of some really unexpected geek magic. Furiosa. Rey. Jessica Jones. Hamilton the Musical. Squirrel Girl. There was a lot of stuff to celebrate in 2015. Jessica Huang? Instant classic.

So, just like last year, I want to take this New Year's Day to look ahead to the new content that I personally am most excited about in this coming year. I've tried to make it as interesting for you as possible, so I've left off some of the more obvious picks. Like, I'm sure you all could have guessed that I would be excited for new seasons of Orphan Black, Agent Carter, Daredevil, and Person of Interest. Those aren't hard to guess. 

And I know we're all aware of my obsession with Captain America and how even if it looks like a giant pile of crap I'm still going to see Captain America: Civil War*, so it's not going on the list. Neither is Batman V. Superman (I'm very excited for Wonder Woman and not much else), Deadpool (looks very funny and very offensive in equal measures), and Suicide Squad (I'm sure I'll watch it, let's put it that way).

Here is a list of ten things that I am excited for in 2016 that you might not have immediately guessed. Or, if you did, then you should totally win a prize for knowing me so well. How's that?


1. Ghostbusters

Look, I didn't see the original Ghostbusters until I was in college, and like with most media created in the 1980s and 90s, I'm not that nostalgic about it. It's fun and I enjoyed it, but the revelation that there was a remake coming with an all female cast was way more interesting to me than rewatching the original. Upon finding that the cast is made up of four women I think are actually hilarious, I got even more stoked. So, yes. I am excited for the all-female Ghostbusters remake coming out. I have high hopes for this film, and I think that it will meet them. If nothing else, though, it will give me Chris Hemsworth as the eye-candy secretary, and I'm pretty okay with that.


2. Luke Cage

As we now know that Netflix can turn out one hell of a superhero show when called to - see examples Daredevil and Jessica Jones - I am very excited for Luke Cage, which will be Marvel's first official property in this new universe to have a black male lead. Woohoo! Mike Colter already proved he has the character down in Jessica Jones, and I'm very curious about where this show will take him. According to rumors, the show will take place several months after the events of Jessica Jones and will feature Cage facing off against his own comic book supervillains, Diamondback and Cottonmouth. Also it's going to be in Harlem, not Hell's Kitchen for once. Claire Temple will be there. I'm very excited. A superhero show to address issues of race? Yes please.


3. Gilmore Girls Reunion Thing

Okay, so this one is a little bit of a cheat. So far, Netflix has not actually announced that the Gilmore Girls reunion show will air in 2016. Netflix does tend to play things close to the vest, though, so I'm pretty hopeful that everyone will get their acts together and we'll be treated to this gorgeousness before the end of the year. I've never really talked about Gilmore Girls that much on this blog, mostly because by the time I started writing, the show was well over with. But it was a huge part of my television education and I really adore it. Therefore I am extremely excited about getting to go back to Stars Hollow for four more ninety-minute episodes, for more of Luke and Lorelai's banter, and especially for more of Paris. I love Paris.


4. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

On the list of things I wasn't excited for up until last week, this one is pretty high. As an ambivalent meh about Star Wars for most of my life, I was shocked to realize how much I'm looking forward to Rogue One. My logic, however, is solid. First, the new Star Wars movie was good, but hampered by its place in the "mythic" narrative, and by its over-reliance on the audience's nostalgia. Second, Rogue One is a completely separate story which will not feature any characters we already know. Third, it has a female lead and she's played by Felicity Jones. Put those three things together and we have a recipe for a Star Wars movie I'm actually hyped about. The story sounds cool - the story of how the rebels stole the plans to that first Death Star - and the cast is amazing - Forrest Whitaker, Mads Mikkelson, and Alan Tudyk, anyone? So, yeah. I'm pumped about Star Wars.


5. Twin Peaks

Oh yes, there is new Twin Peaks happening this year. While I have trouble sitting through most of David Lynch's work, Twin Peaks was the rare show that managed to make his weird work for it. Personally I think that's because Lynch had Mark Frost looming over his shoulder and telling him to knock it off every once in a while, but that's just me. What I love about this late-coming revival is how it actually fits in with the mythology of the show. Laura Palmer, after all, did tell Dale Cooper that she'd see him again in twenty-five years. So here we are, waiting for more of the Black Lodge, the Great Northern, and to find out whatever happened to Audrey Horne. It better have been something good.


6. Angie Tribeca

Definitely one of the more unusual projects coming out this year, Angie Tribeca is a parody of cop dramas and is apparently hilarious. Starring Rashida Jones as Detective Angie Tribeca of Los Angeles' Really Heinous Crimes Unit, the show has a freaking great pedigree. It's created by Steve and Nancy Carrell, boasts a guest star appearance by Bill Murray, and has already been renewed for a second season. Yeah. The first season (ten half-hour episodes) will air in its entirety on January 17, and the second season will come later this year. 


7. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies

This entry is a bit of me putting my money where my mouth is. I stated in 2015 that I have trouble caring about period pieces because they're so boring and formal. Give me murders and time travel and dragons and spaceships, please! Well, since this movie is literally an update of Pride and Prejudice where the heroines are actually elite zombie hunters and not at all interested in looking for husbands, I feel contractually obligated to enjoy it. Also, some people have been complaining over fatigue with this sort of film, coming as it does on the heels of Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter and Hansel and Gretel: Witchhunters. But it's worth remembering that those films owe themselves to Pride and Prejudice and Zombies the book, which is still considered the height of this weird genre. So, you know, let's go see some regency ladies kick ass!


8. The Huntsman: Winter's War

Yes, Snow White and the Huntsman was a movie that really didn't work. No, they've probably not fixed any of the problems that lead to it not working. And, yes, the removal of Kristen Stewart as Snow White is actually really insulting and infuriating when you think about it for too long.** But the trailer for this one does look really good and I'm a sucker for feminist fairy tales. This version will feature Charlize Theron returning as the Evil Queen, Emily Blunt as her sister the Ice Queen, Chris Hemsworth coming back as the Huntsman, and Jessica Chastain showing up as "The Warrior". I'm very ready to watch Theron, Blunt, and Chastain chew the scenery together, and I guess Chris Hemsworth can come too. So here's hoping this one is actually good.


9. Faith

There are a lot of reasons why I am very excited for Valiant Entertainment's new solo title. First, it's one of the only comics I can think of ever to feature a plus-size female superhero, let alone have her be the star of the show. Second, Faith Herbert is an adorable, precious lamb who fangirls about superheroes and is overjoyed to discover she has powers. Third, she's fighting an alien invasion. What's not to love? Seriously, though, this series promises to be really good. It's even more encouraging that the series is coming because fans of Harbinger, Valiant's cool superhero title, demanded more of her. Admittedly, the current run for the comic is a four-part miniseries, but I bet if it does well they'll make more. Hence my excitement.


10. X-Men: Apocalypse

So, this one is sort of a guilty pleasure thing. It might seem a though it ought to be up there with "things I'm very obviously anticipating, duh", but really X-Men: Apocalypse is more of a personal guilty pleasure. All the new X-Men movies are. I'm entranced by the saga of Charles and Erik, and I love Jennifer Lawrence as Mystique, but I tend not to think these movies are actively good. Days of Future Past was all right, and First Class was entertaining as hell, but the films tend to be overbloated and confusing. I don't have a whole lot of hope that Apocalypse will be much different, but I'm still really excited. I can't wait for baby!Storm and baby!Jean, for Charles to finally lose the floppy hair, and for the timeline of these movies to once more get twisted beyond all repair.

Agent Carter does get honorable mention, though.
So there you have it, chickadees. My list of the top ten things I'm anticipating in 2016. In a lot of ways this was a harder list to make than last year's. I think we have to conclude that nerd stuff, especially feminist nerd stuff, seems to come in waves. Some years it feels like you're drowning in the stuff, and other years are just sort of holding the course. This feels like a holding the course year, honestly, which is really okay.

There are good things coming. I can feel it.

Yessssssssss
*This film does win the title of "Thing I Am Most Nervous to Watch in 2016."
**As you may recall, Snow White and the Huntsman was rocked in scandal when it came out that Stewart had an affair with the director. The entire issue, however, was handled really really badly. The director received no repercussions for cheating on his wife and sleeping with a woman who was technically under his employ, and Stewart was written out of the sequel and dragged through the mud for months. So, yeah. Gross.

2 comments:

  1. I tend to think that Kristen Stewart might have been written out because she was a stoic blah in the first one.... lol
    Although I agree that the media probably should have mutually crucified both parties involved that wrecked their marriages. Although, most people don't avidly follow directors, but everyone was super wrapped up in the Twilight couple at the time, so it makes sense from a paparazzi, magazine selling standpoint. Personally I tend to think that stuff is no one's business unless they are required by their choice of line of work as someone who is publicly standing up for a certain moral viewpoint to maintain a public lifestyle that matches that viewpoint. When it comes to dirt and raking people over to coals, I doubt it was a gender bias, and more a money making bias...
    Ps- what did you think of the show Supergirl? I just watched an episode and thought of you as it seemed right up your ally lol

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    1. It just really bothers me when people claim to be "looking out for the morality here" but then proceed to act with a very gendered double standard. Kristen Stewart might be more objectively famous, but she wasn't actually married at the time while the director was. It's just a gross situation all around. As for her being let go, unfortunately it was rather explicitly for this reason, which is awful.

      As for Supergirl, heck yes I enjoy it! Cheesy and silly, but so fun and so happy. It's a nice antidote to all the grimdark going around. I'm going to talk about it on here sometime soon I swear. :DD

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