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31 August 2009 @ 09:47 am
The Hoard Potato wonders if "Reality Check" is the right term here.  
The news in my last post has a lot of people worried about Marvel getting "Disneyfied". Funny, that hadn't really occurred to me.

I'd hate to see the intelligent, thoughtful storytelling of recent years compromised by a company who didn't respect the years of development and history of these characters. I'm not sure the store where I work could survive without merchandise aimed at the mature, sophisticated sensibilities of the modern comics audience.

I know, I know, when people hear "Disney", they still automatically think of the "wholesome" Mouse Factory of fifty years ago, as if the company had no idea how to tell exciting, entertaining action-adventure tales. But, seriously, folks: the modern Disney megalopoly has its tentacles in a lot more than happy, sappy, saccharine kiddie stuff. When I hear "Disney", I don't hear "Cartoon Company" anymore. I hear "Entertainment Powerhouse".

When I mentioned the effect this might have on the Marvel Studios movie series, it was almost entirely wondering if that side of the business would see a cash infusion that would re-accelerate the filming schedule (which has been pushed back a couple of times from the original plan of two big-name superhero pictures a year for three or four years).

Edit: cpxbrex pointed out that Marvel owes its recent barrage of movies to "complex financing", and that this may have something to do with the acquisition deal.

A lot of folks, on the other claw, are worried about them somehow compromising the integrity of the properties.

Personally? I think that the megacorp that gave us movies like No Country for Old Men and Miracle at St. Anna won't bat an eye at Tony Stark's antics.

Edit: Since none of the other comics blogs I read have mentioned this at all, I've combined the last two posts into a single post on my comics blog, Kirby Dots & Ditko Ribbons. Scooped! You are all so totally scooped! Like Raisin Bran, you're scooped!
I feel: mischievoussnarky
Tubetoob on August 31st, 2009 06:02 pm (UTC)
Wyrm, I think the concerns are related to the Mouse's well-earned reputation for providing overly rigid control over their products and stifling creativity. It may not seem like a bad thing on the surface, but if Disney runs Marvel like it runs some of its other holdings, it could well find itself in the sort of environment in which Zombie Spiderman could not happen. You may hear "Entertainment Powerhouse," but that powerhouse nonetheless has a reputation, even among its more adventurous holdings like Miramax, for being overly controlling and censorious.

It's not the concept of the wholesome Disney that concerns some people, I suspect, as much as the concept of the tyrannical and litigious Disney.
Christopher Bradleycpxbrex on August 31st, 2009 06:19 pm (UTC)
Doesn't Marvel already have a little tin plated tyrant going around shoving heavy-handed editorial decisions down artists and audience's throats? From where I sit - having grown up on comic books but recently having become so disgusted with Marvel's comics that I can't get excited about an upcoming movie where Scarlet Johannsen spends much of the movie in skin tight leather while talking with a Bond girl Eastern European accent - Marvel is already run like a Disney holding. Does it matter if the crazy editorial decisions come from Marvel's BOD and editor-in-chief or some Disney functionary? It feels, to me, simply like the burden of heavy-handed decisions smothering artistry being shifted from one shoulder to the other. For my part, I can't see how Disney's editorial control could be any worse than what they have now down there.
Tubetoob on August 31st, 2009 06:21 pm (UTC)
I confess I know absolutely nothing about how Marvel is run. I'm not much of a comic book person, myself.
Stalbonstalbon on September 1st, 2009 12:53 am (UTC)
The shame of it is, while I'm a huge Marvel fan and while the state of their mainstream universe comics right this instant is excellent, it's all just going to change in six months because that's the big thing that Joe Quesada has made important. Dark Reign is fascinating, as is War of Kings, but both are equally distant from one another and about to be overtaken by the next 'big event' that it doesn't matter. We don't get to enjoy them as more than tidbits. And yes, I don't think that Disney taking over will change this, because I don't see them hovering over Quesada and maintaining the status quo, since he's already putting it in upheaval every year. For instance, even with the venerable Joss Whedon having touched it, Runaways went from the best new comic in decades to something I can barely even read. I suspect this will affect the cinema experience much more than the comics experience, but so long as I can keep reading stories from my fave writers (who themselves are on contract only so long as they can stand the management), I'm pretty content.
Christopher Bradleycpxbrex on September 1st, 2009 08:30 am (UTC)
I used to say that there were no functional differences between the two big comics firms. I mean, really, enough of the same writers and artists work at both places . . . basically the same guys write DC and Marvel comics. And while admitting slight differences between editorial decisions, I used to find the same themes and such repeated by each of the big companies. An idea at Marvel would make an appearance in a modestly different form over at DC, and vice-versa. I was largely well pleased with this state of affairs.

I can't say that, anymore. Marvel just lost me when Cyclops became master of assassins and Matt Murdock slept around while his wife was in an insane asylum because of his own self-destructive lifestyle. Or was it Tony Stark doing his Josef Mengele number? I forget. But I concluded that they must have 24 on continuous loop over at Marvel and I stopped watching that, too, when the creepy factor got too high. ;)
Araquan Skytraceraraquan on August 31st, 2009 06:40 pm (UTC)
Don't forget Pulp Fiction. Teeeeeechnically that's a Disney film, the company having acquired Miramax the year before its release.

Tarantino continued to work with Miramax while the Weinsteins were there, up to and including Kill Bill vols. 1 and 2.

Indeed, Tony Stark is tame by comparison.
Your Obedient Serpent: Warning: Memetic Hazardathelind on August 31st, 2009 06:54 pm (UTC)
Oh, this post would have been a LOT longer if I'd included ALL the smart, sophisticated, not-shy-about-sex-and-violence movies Disney imprints have done. I just stuck with two very recent, very violent critical darlings.

But just to be complete:




Edited at 2009-08-31 06:55 pm (UTC)
Araquan Skytraceraraquan on August 31st, 2009 07:17 pm (UTC)
SilverClawbfdragon on September 1st, 2009 02:47 am (UTC)
Thats pretty much exactly what I posted to a forum I visit sometimes who were also up in arms about them being 'Disney-fied' and Pulp Fiction was exactly one of the ones I mentioned. Perhaps this is my ignorance of comic-books, but comparing Marvel's core franchises to the things that Touchstone has released over the years, Marvel as a whole comes out itself looking pretty.. well.. tame.
Your Obedient Serpent: facepalmathelind on September 1st, 2009 05:05 am (UTC)
And the parts that aren't "tame" (see above links, with Ultimate Blob and Zombie Spider-Man) still come off as being puerile.
A.R.M.: I cast Detect Sarcasmkinkyturtle on September 1st, 2009 09:16 am (UTC)
I thought your link descriptions sounded a bit sarcastic. :}
Your Obedient Serpent: coyote laughsathelind on September 1st, 2009 02:47 pm (UTC)
Secrets Revealed
The "Caustic" icon is usually a reliable sarcasm indicator. I love the "sarcastic quotes" on the d20; I tend to use "sarcastic hotlinks" in the same way.

Edited at 2009-09-01 02:50 pm (UTC)
A.R.M.: KT artkinkyturtle on September 2nd, 2009 12:55 am (UTC)
Re: Secrets Revealed
Thanks! The icon is an illustration based on a photo I took of a d20.
scarfman on September 1st, 2009 02:44 pm (UTC)

I didn't think to be concerned about "disneyfication" till I saw worries on my flist. Not particularly then either, but you remind me of the second of three sketches on my page here.