Critical Hits & Misses #290






For today's musical hit, have some Lindsey Stirling, and "Crystallize"



Today's critical rolls: Happy Friday! What's on the agenda for the weekend?


Critical Writ has a super-duper strict comment policy that specifies a single rule above all others: we reserve the right to ban you for being a terribad citizen of the internet.

Critical Hits & Misses #289





For today's musical hit, we have Pitbull, because goddammit, even if you don't like his music, he's obviously a good person. (Here, listen to the catchy club number, "Timber")



Today's critical rolls: If money was no obstacle, what kind of good would you use your powers for?


Critical Writ has a super-duper strict comment policy that specifies a single rule above all others: we reserve the right to ban you for being a terribad citizen of the internet.

Hellboy: An Assortment Of Horrors

Hellboy has been in the news quite a bit lately, from the roller coaster that was Ed Skrien’s casting as Ben Daimio to David Harbour’s beefcake reveal. Aside from movie news, there has been pieces on how he is a timely hero in an age where Nazis are a thing again, as well as enjoying a slew of new releases this year. The most recent is a short story anthology, Hellboy: An Assortment of Horrors.

If you’re only familiar with Hellboy’s origin story or the Del Toro films, this is an easy book to get into. The stories are stand-alone features and do not draw much on the big events that have unfolded in Mike Mignola’s comics over the years; there are few references to the Nazis, and I don’t recall any mention of the Plague of Frogs, Rasputin or Baba Yaga. There are some quick references, but nothing that will make you feel lost. Even if you’ve only seen the 2004 movie, just keep in mind that in the comics, Liz and Hellboy never date and you’re good to go.

Short story anthologies from various writers are sometimes hard to review, but the quality here is mostly consistent. I only disliked one or two stories, and even then I just found myself speeding through them rather than actively hating what I was reading. It wasn’t so much that I thought they were terrible, just less enjoyable than the others.

Fans of comics know that when new writers take over a character, it’s common to see their personality totally change to fit the new writer’s view. This isn’t the case here. What is particularly lovable about Hellboy is that even when he’s snarky, he’s ultimately a sweetheart. The stories range over the decades and different periods of his life, but each writer nails what makes Hellboy, Hellboy. The Other Side Of Summer by Chris Roberson, for example, takes place in 1950 when Hellboy is five and decides to investigate a haunting with a girl he just met. Most other stories cover cases he takes on as an adult BPRD agent, but it’s really great to see his brief childhood years covered as well.

There is a story or two that seemed to have been written to showcase an original character the writer thinks is cool rather than concentrate on established ones; The Duelist by Jonathan Maberry features a hot young woman named Lilah who is mildly psychic after a few years of dropping acid and we’re supposed to care. The story works just fine without her. It’s not the only story to have an original character, of course, it just feels like a waste of space to read how pale Lilah’s breasts are, and how she folds her arms under her breasts, when we could be focusing on the ghost haunting her town.

There are some great original characters here, mostly by having Hellboy observed from their point of view. Fire Is The Devil’s Only Friend by Michael Rowe does this extremely well, and I think is my favorite story out of the collection. It focuses mostly on a little girl named Hazel, her mother and the mother’s scheming boyfriend. When Hazel is targeted by a child sacrificing cult, she sends out a psychic cry for help that Hellboy picks up on. Hazel and her family aren’t perfect, and she isn’t exactly a cool new character to show off; mostly, she’s a scared and troublesome young girl that Hellboy has to race to save, and it’s genuinely suspenseful and touching.

Other BPRD characters do get some focus. We are treated to two stories all about Liz Sherman, and one focusing on Kate Corrigan, BPRD’s folklorist. Chelsea Cain’s One More Radical Stone Fox follows a teenage Liz Sherman as she runs away from BPRD Headquarters, and it’s one story I wish I could see in comic format. In fact, I’d follow a whole series by Chelsea Cain about teenage Liz Sherman; Mike Mignola writes women well, but Cain absolutely nails a relatable Liz that explores her past and her powers without delving into self pity or unbearable teen angst.

Really, all this anthology was missing was Abe Sapien.

Hellboy: An Assortment of Horrors was published on August 29th by Dark Horse Books and is available wherever fine books are sold.

Megan “Spooky” Crittenden is a secluded writer who occasionally ventures from her home to give aid to traveling adventurers.

Critical Hits & Misses #288






For today's musical hit, we have Lorde and "Royals"



Today's critical rolls: If money was no obstacle, what kind of celebrity experience/merchandise would you dish out money for, especially if it was for a good cause? What celebrity would you want to hang out with, what would you want to do, or what kind of item would you want from them?


Critical Writ has a super-duper strict comment policy that specifies a single rule above all others: we reserve the right to ban you for being a terribad citizen of the internet.

Wonder Woman/Conan #1 Review - A Crow Without Mercy


The Concept:

Wonder Woman/Conan is a book made for a fan like me. My two favorite characters in comics might very well be Diana of Themyscira and Conan of Cimmeria, but for much different reasons. While Wonder Woman appeals to the idealism of my heart, Conan's brutal adventures get my heart pumping.

Diana and Conan are not quite two sides of the same coin, but perhaps inversions of each other. Both are the greatest warriors of their world, but where Diana is a wise and loving crusader of justice, Conan is a reckless, rolling stone of a mercenary. Both are passionate, but Diana's love and need for justice extends outward to the world and people around her, while Conan tends to turn his love and sense of justice inward, looking out primarily for his own happiness and well-being.

My first question about this pairing was who of them would be taken out of their element? Conan is not new to feats of heroism, nor is he without compassion. Diana, however, while consistently challenged by the trials of gods and villains alike, has never been in Conan's sandals: Diana has not lived a life of desperation, fighting for little more than her own day-to-day survival.


It makes sense then for this book to take Diana to the brutal, low-fantasy world of the Hyborian Age, and we've been blessed to have Gail Simone be the one to take her there. Not only does Gail love and understand Diana, but she also understands the innate pulp appeal of the sexy, but inescapably dark, sword and sorcery world of Conan. Gail is able to remain authentic and give both themes their just due.

The Story:

We begin with a slice of Conan's childhood, some of which was fleshed out from the notes of Robert E. Howard in Busiek's Conan: Born on the Battlefield, but now with a new element: a long-lost love, Yanna. Decades later as an adult, Conan thinks he sees Yanna again, this time not in in his homeland of Cimmeria, but in a gladiator's arena.


Conan is mistaken: it is not Yanna, but our favorite Amazonian princess. An amnesiac dressed in rags and strategically-splattered with mud, Diana been de-powered, enslaved, thrown to the fighting pits, and branded as the "Warrior Witch." Slavery is abundant in Hyboria, and Conan himself has been enslaved as gladiator in the arena; naturally, Conan detests slavery. I partly would expect then, that this alone could be reason for Conan to get involved, but instead, this case of mistaken identity seems to be his motivating factor in sneaking in to Diana's cell.


Diana does not immediately discount Conan's insistence that she is Yanna, but she does immediately feel a connection to Conan, perhaps even chemistry. Before they can escape, Diana's slaver Dellos captures Conan, and believing the two to be long lost lovers, declares they will fight each other to the death in the arena.

The Book:

The book is well-crafted. Lopresti's pencils deliver the sinewy physicality we expect to see in a Conan book, and inks by Matt Ryan enhance this wonderfully. Wendy Broome's colors expertly handle light and shadow, delivering the appropriate shifts to mood for scenes and characters. Saida Temofonte's lettering is innovative and effectively stylistic; all together, the book's team meshes perfectly.

Gail leaves us with a lot of questions but a few hints to what lies ahead. Diana dreams of Themyscira, feeling something about her true identity, even remembering that she is known as 'Wonder Woman.' We also get a look at two sisters of the Corvidae, raven-sorceresses (who remind me of Medusa's sisters, Euryale and Stheno, from Rucka's Wonder Woman: Eyes of the Gorgon). The sisters, who have been following Conan's exploits, stop to entertain themselves with Diana's arena spectacle, and I have to wonder if they're involved or even responsible for Diana's strange and unfortunate circumstances.


I also find Diana's de-powering and enslavement to be safe in Simone's hands; any other writer might give me pause, but Gail knows all too well about the fridging and exploitation of our heroines; it's not going to happen on her watch.

Also, Issue #3's cover teases a tryst between Diana and Conan, which I have mixed feelings about.


It's no surprise Conan would be interested in Diana; Conan is an absolute hound. Frankly, Diana is everyone's type, and I have a hard time pinning down what Diana's type is (maybe she doesn't have one), but Conan doesn't seem to be it. He's too sweaty. Still, it's not my business who Diana wants to roll around with, and if there's anyone who could make this pairing work, even if only for one wild night, it's Gail Simone.

In a comics world of world-shattering events and superhero reinventions, it's refreshing to indulge in a fun story that seems to be heading toward character exploration, rather than deconstruction. We have an attractive book and an intriguing start to this series and I'd encourage Wonder Woman and Conan fans alike to add this one to your pull list!

Adrian Martinez is a graphic designer, comic book letterer, hobbyist writer, and all-around geek living in New York City.

Critical Hits & Misses #287






For today's musical hit, we have Sia and "Cheap Thrills"



Today's critical rolls: It's Monday, it's officially fall, and we're talking about dragons (none of these things are necessarily related, mind you). Would you want a dragon? What would you name them? What color would their scales be?


Critical Writ has a super-duper strict comment policy that specifies a single rule above all others: we reserve the right to ban you for being a terribad citizen of the internet.

Critical Hits & Misses #286





For today's musical hit, we have Clean Bandit and "Symphony"



Today's critical rolls: Happy First Day of Autumn! What's your favorite season and why?


Critical Writ has a super-duper strict comment policy that specifies a single rule above all others: we reserve the right to ban you for being a terribad citizen of the internet.

Critical Hits & Misses #285






For today's musical hit, yessssss My Little Pony: The Movie... it's Sia and "Rainbow"



Today's critical rolls: Happy Hump Day! What's on your mind?


Critical Writ has a super-duper strict comment policy that specifies a single rule above all others: we reserve the right to ban you for being a terribad citizen of the internet.

Critical Hits & Misses #284





For today's musical hit, we have Miike Snow and "Genghis Khan," because I adore a good gay love story, especially when it involves a super spy and a super villain. And a super catchy tune.

And also because this is one of the greatest music videos ever made.



Today's critical rolls: What are some of your favorite music videos? Seriously this is way at the top of my list. Show me other awesome videos!


Critical Writ has a super-duper strict comment policy that specifies a single rule above all others: we reserve the right to ban you for being a terribad citizen of the internet.

Critical Hits & Misses #283





For today's musical hit, Linkin Park just released "One More Light" in honor of Chester Bennington



Today's critical rolls: mother! was a pretty strange film, not at all typical of what the Hollywood of Transformers fame is dishing out these days. Have you seen any other non-mainstream, strange films you'd like to recommend (or just chat about)?


Critical Writ has a super-duper strict comment policy that specifies a single rule above all others: we reserve the right to ban you for being a terribad citizen of the internet.

Final Girls - Book Review

Quincy Carpenter does not think of herself as a Final Girl, a name the press has given to her and two other girls who became the sole survivors of horror movie-esque massacres. After that terrible night at Pine Cottage, her memory is repressed and that is just fine with her. She’s got a successful baking blog, a loving boyfriend, and an endless Xanax prescription. But when Lisa, the first of the Final Girls, is found dead, Quincy’s world is turned upside down. The third Final Girl Samantha Boyd shows up on her door step, and soon Quincy finds herself forced to remember what happened that awful night.

Final Girls by Riley Sager is a tribute to slasher films. There is no relation to the film The Final Girls, in case you were wondering. If you’re not familiar with the genre, usually the only survivor at the end of the film is a girl, often a virgin or someone who lost her virginity shortly before the end of the movie. There’s a lot to be said about the Freudian implications of the trope, but Final Girls doesn’t really address it. Instead, the focus is largely on the mystery of what happened at Pine Cottage, and Quincy’s difficulty in acknowledging the past.

I hope you like baking, because there’s a lot of it in the book. In fact, the first half of the book is very slow. Like the slasher films this book takes it’s cues from, the protagonists are largely bland and unlikable and you wait anxiously for someone to finally be killed. Quincy is particularly bad about connecting the dots, and moping in purple prose internal monologues.  Her fiance Jeff exists solely to remind her that she’s supposed to be normal now and never deal with her trauma. Sam is the only one who is interesting, but you can tell she’s bad news because she dresses in punk fashion. I know my thrillers well enough to know that punk and goth is usually code for a weirdo or a villain, and other outdated stereotypes.

I felt also there was a fundamental issue with the idea of the media labeling the three girls as Final Girls. The world Quincy lives in must be a kinder one than we live in, because massacres are depressingly common in the US. Quincy says she cannot relate to survivors of sexual assault and other crimes, but there’s no mention of her reaching out to survivors of school shootings or misogynistic rampages. Either they don’t exist in the world, it was just not thought about. In this world, however, victims are usually forgotten or largely ignored and do not become celebrities. Many of us can list off many serial killers and mass murderers, and obsess about what drove them to murder, but rarely can we name a single victim. We deify murderers, not the people and certainly not the women that survive them.

The book picks up towards the end and to its credit, after a point I couldn’t put it down. There are twists and turns and red herrings, a few I called and a few that surprised. The way the pieces fit together with so many coincidences feels unsatisfactory, but there’s enough foreshadowing to prevent it from feeling completely cheap; it’s just too neatly tied together. Speaking of foreshadowing: flashbacks in a novel, even one that wants to be a slasher film, should be illegal. I know, author! I was there, I read it! I don’t need to read it twice!

It would be remiss not to bring up the fact that Riley Sager is the pen name of a man. “Riley Sager” seems to have been chosen, according to The Guardian at least, as a marketing ploy to be the next in the line of Gone Is The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo On The Train With All The Gifts. If so, it does suck that marketing sees successful female authors in the thriller category and decided to stage this as the next one. It’s especially shameful since it is utterly unnecessary; The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo started this “Girl” thriller title trend, and it was written by a man and enjoyed success because of it. There was simply no need! I actually enjoyed Final Girls better than I did The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. Which isn’t saying much, but it’s something.

While Sager is not bad at writing women, finding out that he’s a man makes some things make more sense, like the amount of baking without any talk of cleaning the huge mess baking makes, or the awkward sex talk between two female characters. There’s no Cool Girl speech here, and that’s fundamentally what marketing this book under Riley Sager misses; Flynn is partly popular because she has the perspective of a woman. It isn’t to say that men can’t write women well, or shouldn’t try. But you can’t slap an unisex name on something and hope it’ll sell out of feminist demand for female authors.

That said, if you’re a fan of slasher films, and can put up with a slow start, it won’t be a bad Halloween read. If you were looking for a sort of analysis of the final girl trope, and what it means, you are actually better off renting Behind The Mask: The Rise Of Leslie Vernon.

Final Girls by Riley Sager was published on July 5, 2017 by Dutton and is available wherever fine books are sold.

Megan “Spooky” Crittenden is a secluded writer who occasionally ventures from her home to give aid to traveling adventurers.

Critical Hits & Misses #282

This is my Twitter Troll Says Wut face.


For today's musical hit, it's Lorde and "Homemade Dynamite"



Today's critical rolls: Geek trolls, emirite? Tell us about your experiences with gatekeeping nonsense in your fandoms.


Critical Writ has a super-duper strict comment policy that specifies a single rule above all others: we reserve the right to ban you for being a terribad citizen of the internet.

Critical Hits & Misses #281






For today's musical hit, we have Lindsey Stirling and "Brave Enough"



Today's critical rolls: Free-For-All Thors Day! Discuss what you wish!


Critical Writ has a super-duper strict comment policy that specifies a single rule above all others: we reserve the right to ban you for being a terribad citizen of the internet.

Critical Hits & Misses #280






For today's musical hit, we have Lana del Rey and "White Mustang"



Today's critical rolls: Should tv shows, even ones dominated by mostly-white writing rooms, address topical minority issues? It's kind of a Catch-22 isn't it? They won't hire more minority writers, but if we ask white writers to not write about these issues, then they won't get addressed, because of the lack of minority writers. Discuss!


Critical Writ has a super-duper strict comment policy that specifies a single rule above all others: we reserve the right to ban you for being a terribad citizen of the internet.

Critical Hits & Misses #279






For today's musical hit, we have Calvin Harris and "This Is What You Came For"



Today's critical rolls: If Lucasfilm DID pick a minority director for Episode IX, who do you think it should be? If you've got nothing in mind, here's another question for you: what do you think of JJ Abrams being back in the franchise?


Critical Writ has a super-duper strict comment policy that specifies a single rule above all others: we reserve the right to ban you for being a terribad citizen of the internet.

Critical Hits & Misses #278

Happy Monday! I was out of town last weekend, so we missed Friday's CH&M! Hope your weekend was merry!





For today's musical hit, we have Kane Brown and "Found You"




Today's critical rolls: Well, it was a rather disastrous weekend. An 8.2 earthquake in Mexico plus a hurricane on the east coast of Mexico, and then the Caribbean and Florida got hit by the largest storm ever. Were you or someone you know caught in any of these? If not, what kind of natural disasters happen in your neck of the woods?


Critical Writ has a super-duper strict comment policy that specifies a single rule above all others: we reserve the right to ban you for being a terribad citizen of the internet.

Critical Hits & Misses #277





For today's musical hit, we have Kelly Clarkson's "Love So Soft"



Today's critical rolls: Love Stephen King? What's your favorite book and/or movie adaptation? Hate Stephen King? How come?


Critical Writ has a super-duper strict comment policy that specifies a single rule above all others: we reserve the right to ban you for being a terribad citizen of the internet.

The Ancient Magus's Bride Is Just Wonderful


On July 26th Crunchyroll showed off the first three episode of The Ancient Magus’ Bride in theaters across the country, as an installment of it’s Anime Movie Nights. The show has yet to air in Japan or in North America, so it was a rare peak at an anime months before it is due to actually come out.

The Ancient Magus’ Bride follows Chise, a young girl who has lived a life of misfortune and out of desperation, sold herself into slavery. She is auctioned off to a bone faced mage named Elias Ainsworth, who aims to train her as his apprentice and one day marry her. He brings her from Japan to his English countryside residence, which she quickly begins to think of as home.

Now, yes. Elias is in fact a bone faced mage and that seems to be his genuine appearance, having to use magic to appear human at all (a face that Chise complains, looks fake). And yes, Elias makes for an extremely weird romantic interest for Chise. His bone face never changes expression, except for during humorous moments where his face becomes simplistic and he smiles or sweats. Despite his frightening appearance, I was surprised by how quickly I was endeared to it. He can look menacing, or genuinely pleasant, just by his words or the context of the scene. It’s no surprise that Chise quickly becomes loyal to him.

I haven’t seen the prequel or read the manga yet, so I went into this with only the trailer for the series. The show, from what we can tell from the first three episodes, avoids massive exposition dumps and instead prefers to world build slowly, when it makes sense for Chise to ask questions or be given information. It might be more useful for Chise to be sat down and taught everything all at once, but for the sake of narrative we should be glad that Elias and friends prefer to show rather than tell, and only tell when they must.

Chise’s history itself isn’t explained up front; how she came to sell herself into slavery is dripped out in the first three episodes, and I am sure we still don’t have the full story. It does not shy away from the fact that her reasons are depressing and she’s been left severely damaged by whatever has happened. I’m glad the reasons are saved; enough is shown already that we can believe that she felt like it was her best option, but we can watch her heal as we learn more about why she was so desperate in the first place. I realize this may all be explained in the prequel miniseries, but I never felt confused about what had happened. The sadness of the first three episodes are juxtaposed directly with scenes of acceptance, happiness and peace, which works very well. It is emotionally engaging without becoming overwhelming.

The show is heavy on whimsy; fairies come to chit chat, a letter Elias writes becomes a bird and flies away to deliver itself, cute spirits appear out of nowhere to cuddle—all the while harpsichord tingles to emphasize how magical it all is. Luckily, it avoids being too cheesy. The only times I felt like it was edging towards too much was one scene where Chise is babysitting infant dragons. It felt like it went on a bit too long, but again the juxtaposition came; after they fall asleep she has a conversation with their uncle about death. It’s all a bit too heavy to be appropriate for small children, but I can’t help but suspect this will be a good show to introduce to the tweens and teens in your life; cute and bubbly at times, but one that doesn’t sweep away how unfair life can be.

The Ancient Magus’s Bride will being to air on October 7th, 2017 on Crunchyroll. Two of the three prequel episodes are already there, and the third one will be added on September 7, 2017.

Megan “Spooky” Crittenden is a secluded writer who occasionally ventures from her home to give aid to traveling adventurers.

Critical Hits & Misses #276

Not an actual photo of Will Smith on the set of Aladdin


For today's musical hit, we have U2 and "You're The Best Thing About Me"




Today's critical rolls: My state is on fire and we're choking on smoke and ash, the southeast is about to get wrecked by a monster hurricane, Texas is still underwater, and well, natural disasters abound. Got any nasty natural disasters in your part of the world right now? If not, what's your biggest fear when it comes to natural disasters (personally, I really really hate earthquakes because of the lack of warning)


Critical Writ has a super-duper strict comment policy that specifies a single rule above all others: we reserve the right to ban you for being a terribad citizen of the internet.

Critical Hits & Misses #275






For today's musical hit, we have the live performance by Lady Gaga of "Scheiße" at Fenway Park



Today's critical rolls: Books are the subject of the day, so what are some of your favorite books these days?


Critical Writ has a super-duper strict comment policy that specifies a single rule above all others: we reserve the right to ban you for being a terribad citizen of the internet.

Review: Spider-Man: Homecoming



Oh Spider-Man, we do love you so. Not only the most popular Marvel superhero, but one of the most popular superheroes, and hell one of the most popular modern fictional characters of all time. The original two Spider-Man films are not only among the highest water marks of the genre. But the character's relevance has been waning of late, especially given that his last 2 cinematic excursions were raw garbage. But he remains immensely popular, so when Marvel reacquired the option to use him in the MCU, it was obvious they were going to exercise it immediately.

Homecoming is devoted to our titular neighborhood Spider-Man (Tom Holland). In the wake of Captain America: Civil War, he's held on to the special suit Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) gave him and is eager to rejoin the Avengers, but Stark has little time for him and so he's relegated to stopping menial street level crimes. But that changes when Adrian Toomes (Michael Keaton), a former salvager who feels he was robbed of cleaning up the wake of the events of The Avengers by Stark Industries, begins stealing Chitauri tech and building weapons out of it to sell, as well as building himself a wingsuit to help with his theft. And with Stark and company occupied with moving out of Avengers Tower, Spider-Man may be the only one who can help.

Spider-Man: Homecoming is...fine. Okay. Pretty good. It occasionally flirts with being a better movie, but never really stretches for greatness or being anything other than solid. Maybe that's a flaw, but I'm actually pretty stoked about a Marvel movie being willing to be low key and fun, rather than epic and important to the ongoing storyline. So while that doesn't excuse its flaws, it does make me more inclined to overlook them.

I also love the running gag about how useless Spider-Man is outside of the very specific confines of NYC.
Honestly, the weakest link in the film is Tom Holland as Spider-Man. He's not bad per se and he's a lot of fun, but whenever the film stretches to be more than it is, he's found wanting. Tobey Maguire might be less amusing, but he was much better at the emotional beats than Holland is, at least thus far. The film makes two big attempts to recreate the emotional depth of the train scene from Spider-Man 2, and both times Holland fails to sell them.

But more than being straight bad, it might just be that he's outclassed. Obviously Robert Downey Jr. is great as Iron Man, in his semi-regular cameos, but the rest of the cast is just killer. Michael Keaton as the Vulture is easily the best and most engaging MCU villain since Loki, not least because he's sympathetic and interesting in his own right. Jacob Batalon may be playing a small role, but he absolutely kills every second he's on screen, and Zendaya just devours the screen whenever she shows up. And of course, it's always nice to see Donald Glover, even if he barely has more than a cameo.

"This looks like a problem that can only be solved by punching!"
If the movie has an issue, one that keeps me from being overly enthusiastic about it, it's that it doesn't seem to be about anything. It occasionally strains to have some subtext and themes, but they tend to fall short, and given that they're mostly about how much Peter wants to join the Avengers, they tend to undercut the things I like about the movie. The only one that has any real resonance is the Vulture's thread about how Tony Stark's company is making money cleaning up the mess he himself made, an interesting concept that doesn't get near enough screentime.

So what do I like about it? Well aside from the aforementioned actors I like, the action scenes are well put together and engaging, the dialogue feels natural, the movie moves at a good pace and it's often really, really funny. While it may be a slight movie, it's certainly an enjoyable one, and the script and direction do a lot to keep the energy up. And there's nothing wrong with being slight; Honestly, the biggest issue I took with Guardians of the Galaxy 2 was when it decided it needed to have a big, world ending threat, rather than a smaller one.

"Is this as cool as the train scene in Spider-Man 2 yet?"
"No! Stop asking!"
Honestly, my interest in the MCU has been waning of late, maybe because none of the top 3 best superhero films of the last 2 years (Logan, Deadpool and Wonder Woman) have been MCU properties. It took me until Doctor Strange was on Netflix to watch it, I never finished Iron Fist and I never even started Defenders. So it's nice to see an MCU movie that was small, engaging and relatable, and also didn't require me to devote more precious brain space to the location of another magic rock. Maybe a few more like these, and the bigger stories will start to feel big again, rather than the norm. Either way, this one is good, recommended.

Elessar is a 27 year old Alaskan-born, Connecticut-based, cinephile with an obsession with The Room and a god complex. 

Critical Hits & Misses #274

Okay but seriously, this movie is flippin' hilarious

For today's musical hit, we have Taylor Swift and "...Ready For It?"



Today's critical rolls: Happy Monday (and Happy Labor Day if you're in the US)! Since we're talking about movies today, talk about movies in the comments! What have you seen of late? Anything good (or terrible)? Something obscure we should take a look at?


Critical Writ has a super-duper strict comment policy that specifies a single rule above all others: we reserve the right to ban you for being a terribad citizen of the internet.

Critical Hits & Misses #273





For today's musical hit, we have Kendrick Lamar's "Humble"




Today's critical rolls: It's a long weekend in the US... happy early Labor Day! What are you planning on doing this weekend (whether you're in the US or not)?


Critical Writ has a super-duper strict comment policy that specifies a single rule above all others: we reserve the right to ban you for being a terribad citizen of the internet.