Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Like the Prodigal Son, I have returned

Hey readers! How are you doing? I see we haven't talked in... um... 2 years and 3 months and even then it was only to assure you that more blogging was coming imminently. Whoops! Quick recap of my last two years: dominated Physical Therapy like how Hugh Jackman dominates the other X-Men in terms of screen time, left Housing & Residential life to pursue the thrilling life of a nomad, left the nomad life to pursue the thrilling life of a box mover, was a box mover for six hours before self-reflection (and terrible migraines) convinced me to go back to tutoring, saw Bean nearly pull off back to back championships, was a tutor until I got a legitimate job that turned out to be kinda awful, was the best man in my best friend's wedding (so it was best squared), shouted "VIET GODDAMNED NAM" in a church parking lot, saw Niagra Falls, became a fan of soccer or "footie" as it is called in the British vernacular, crushed Bean like a bug in the championship for my first title since 2008 (Bean is making the championship entirely too often for my comfort), felt existential despair as Game of Thrones the TV Show eclipsed Game of Thrones the book series (I have no answers, my powers of foresight have failed me), got a new far less depressing job, became a board game enthusiast, and started this blog again. So let's see what the last project I was working on was back in early 2013.

Ranking the Avengers films? Well, there's a landscape that's changed fairly significantly. We've had a whole new Avengers cycle complete and begin again. And I, uh, got through, um, 2 of the six Avengers films in my first effort. And, um, I kinda wanted to talk football today... so let me make a good faith effort to at least rank and say a little bit about each of the remaining films from Cycle 1. I may go over Cycle 2 some day & try making a comprehensive ranking or I may not. Overpromising is how I end up behind the proverbial blogging 8-ball.

Marvel Cycle 1: Remember when this was simple?

6. The Incredible Hulk
5. Captain America: The First Avenger- I wrote about both these films ad nauseum here.

4. Iron Man 2- a good movie undermined by a bizarre love of cross-talk (everything is so much funnier when you can't hear what the characters are saying) and maybe a little too much universe building (although not as bad as some later installments).

3. Thor- technically, this is not a better film than Iron Man 2 but I respect it more because Thor is fundamentally a much sillier concept, but they managed to make it work. Also, Loki is by far the best Marvel villain (which is kinda like being the best basketball player in Hobbiton).

2. Iron Man- a great movie that was a paradigm shift in how superhero movies were made. It retained the realism of the Christopher Nolan Batman films but wasn't afraid to have fun and hint at a world where there were other superheroes besides the guy whose name is on the marquee.

1. Disney's Marvel's The Avengers- For what it is, this team up movie is perfectly constructed. With the exception of The Incredible Hulk (which can be boiled down to a single line in Avengers), every prior film makes significant contributions to the plot of Avengers beyond the superhero. You had the spies from Iron Man trying to stop the bad guy from Thor from using the plot device from Captain America. It was so well paced that I didn't even care that the first superhero doesn't show up until 45 minutes into this superhero film.

All right, now that we're six-hundred or so words into our post that is nominally about football without discussing football, I think it's better to start a new post where I talk about that and just leave this as my jump back into blogging. For what it's worth, I was able to rattle this off without stretching or anything, which means my blogging muscles will be sore tomorrow!

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