Geek Out: Fanboys, Fangirls and The Fantastic Four
Welcome to the first edition of my column Geek Out. For the remainder of this semester I will write a column once a week rambling about things I like. If the title didn’t hint at my interests then I guess I’ll just say it, I like geeky things. Videogames, comics, movies, tech etc. So expect for me to hit on one or more of these topics a week. So let’s begin shall we.
So I’m assuming that most people have seen the trailer for the “Fantastic Four” reboot. Personally I liked it, I thought it was a good teaser that certainly grabbed people’s attention and got people talking, so on that front, mission accomplished Fox. Its been interesting to watch how the internet has reacted to this movie since it was announced. First, the internet cheered when it was announced that Josh Trank was directing this new movie, his previous film, “Chronicle” was a huge success both critically and financially. Fans of the Marvel property were excited to see how Trank would bring Marvel’s first family to the big screen.
However the internet quickly turned its back on the film once rumors of the cast surfaced. The rumors suggested that this film would not only be different from Fox’s previous attempt at the franchise, but that the film would also deviate from the source material as well. The major source of many fan’s anger was centered on the rumored casting of Miles Teller as Reed Richards and Michael B. Jordan as Johnny Storm. Comment sections of videos and articles about the rumors were filled with “Fox is killing my childhood” and “Johnny Storm isn’t black, why is he black”, to the more subtle “Why is Reed Richards so young.” The rumors turned out to be true, the ethnicity of Johnny Storm has indeed changed and Reed Richards isn’t as old as he is in the comics. From then on it was a non-stop barrage of hate and malice against this film.
I recapped this movie’s production for the simple reason of talking about the fanboy (girl). See every time a well-established property gets the Hollywood treatment, fans of that property go straight to the internet to voice their various opinions. That’s perfectly fine with me. We have freedom of speech and the internet allows us to converse with other liked minded people. However I do have a problem with what they say. Yes, changing to ethnicity of Johnny Storm was not something that was expected by many, but Michael B. Jordan is a good actor. If you doubt that watch both “Fruitvale Station” and “The Awkward Moment,” these two films show how much range the actor has. Miles Teller is a good actor in his own right, films like “Whiplash” and “The Spectacular Now” show how talented he is. So maybe instead of looking at the physical differences between an actor and their comic book counter-part you should look at what he or she brings to the table talent wise.
Fanboys and fangirls have to realize that the property that they love so much is getting a film is because of the strong fan base. Movie companies only look at properties that have a huge fan base so that they can make money. Yes at the end of the day it is all about the money and there’s nothing wrong with that. Look I’d be lying if I said that I’ve never criticized a film based solely off its trailer. The point of trailers are so that we get a glimpse of a movie that way we know is coming and then we can decide if we want to see it or not. But I don’t however believe that every movie company is out to ruin my own experiences with the property that I love so much. Why? Because they are my own experiences and memories. The comment about ruining my childhood is a common comment seen on the internet, but it makes no sense. Fox’s versions of “Fantastic Four” won’t do anything to your childhood unless you let it. If you think you won’t like it, then don’t watch it, it’s as simple as that. So relax people if the movie is good, then great and if its bad then that’s fine too. A bad movie won’t hurt you or your memories of growing up with the property. Stop being over dramatic; it’s just a movie.