Christmas Wish List 2010
I realize that, well, addressing you via my Comic Related column may be an unusual way to express my Christmas wishes, but I do have my reasons. First, your restraining order against me pretty much limits any options I have for communicating directly with you. Secondly, I'm really into multitasking. But more importantly, I've heard you are a big fan of the site (especially the work of "Decapitated Dan" Royer in particular), so I thought I would go ahead and send you my wish list.
But this is not your usual wish list - it's not about "stuff"; no, for this month's column (and my list in general) is focusing on comic properties that I would like to see developed into television series. It's a fun, end-of-the-year review that I thought you might get a kick out of...and that hopefully, will spark some great debate and discussion on the site.
First, I know I've already said this on my blog, but I really think the time is right for an animated series based on DC's Doom Patrol. Just think of it - based on the recent Batman: The Brave and the Bold episode "The Last Patrol", it could easily be geared towards an older adolescent audience on Adult Swim. It could even integrate some of the more off-the-wall humor from both Arnold Drake's initial run (as well as Keith Giffen's current take), and I think it would be a great hit. Plus, I still want to repeat: Bruce Campbell as the voice of Larry Trainor, aka "Negative Man". Come on, Santa, won't you give my dreams a chance?
Even though the run of the comic ended earlier this year, I think Warren Ellis and John Cassady's Planetary would make a great live action series on HBO. Just think of it, Santa - a series that not only explores the "secret history" of the world, but also can serve as a meta-commentary on both popular culture and pop culture-derived media? Just think of it - the way the comic series used pulps, comics, Japanese monster movies, and other sources to drive storytelling, the show could easily use television references and sources to drive a much deeper, richer vein. (Think of it as the thinking man's League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, 21st century style). In addition, you might want to consider have Joss Whedon spearhead the series - yes, I know he's busy with some other comics franchise that nobody's heard of, but I think this would help him get over the cancelation of Dollhouse.
(Speaking of Wildstorm, I think another property of theirs that would make a great live action series would be Ex Machina. Yes, it has an ending, but thegreat thing is that it would involve the same kind of parallel timeline storytelling as Lost, but you could use other "recent" events to differentiate the story, turning it into a West Wing-style show focusing on urban politics. Throw in a few Law & Order style ripped-from-the-headlines plot threads, and I think you have a winner on your hands).
However, if you're going to think of multi-character, multi-arc comics that deserve the live action treatment, I can think of no other but Vertigo's Fables. (OK, admittedly, it wouldn't be "pure" live action, because CGI would have to render some of the animal characters). Speaking as a relative latecomer to the comic series, I quite enjoy this series' mix of fairy tales, soap opera, and political allegories to tell a consistently engaging story. Besides, the advantage is that a clever writer/producer could provide some "variations on a theme" - rather than a straightforward retelling of the series, really make it its own without relying on staying too close to the formula.
(However, Santa, we don't want to go too far - I'm still reading about how many viewers of AMC's Prisoner revamp still refer to it as "Jesus vs. Magneto". I'll keep the McGoohan original, thank you).
Finally, I would like to propose one comic property that I think it's high time we develop into its own series - Marvel's Moon Knight.
Yes, I'm serious, why do you ask?
Have it take a page from the Moench/Sienkiewicz run in the 1980s - make it a nice, noir-influenced show. Have the multiple identity aspect changed from a potential mental health issue (which may be a bit controversial and inappropriate) to a practicality (in order to deal with multiple settings, our protagonist has to work in multiple realms - in addition, this would be great for some fine multi-level multi-arc storytelling). The entire premise - a man who is an avatar of an Egyptian god righting wrongs - straddles several genres. I am sure that people might argue that the current run of Moon Knight should be considered, and I won't argue. I really do think that Moon Knight should be on our television screens now.
Well, Santa, thanks for reading. This year has been a challenge, and I'm not asking for much. (Especially since the gifts I usually receive consist of socks, underwear, and dollar store cologne). But I think that if you want to make me - and my fellow comics/movie/tv fans - happy, you might want to see which producers you can bribe, er, I mean, convince by moving them off the "naughty" list to the "nice" list.
Read More! For more of Gordon's writings, insights, and
general information, please visit his blog at blogthispal.blogspot.com.
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