Archive for March 16th, 2008

Confessions of a Superhero

March 16th, 2008 by Martin

Confessions of a Superhero promo photoI just watched Confessions of a Superhero, a documentary about four LA actors (one actress), who work on Hollywood boulevard dressed up as Superman, Batman, the Hulk and Wonder Woman. In some respects, they are little more than glorified pan-handlers, making money from “tips” solicited after posing for photos with tourists.

The documentary actually had superb photography, which may have been its greatest asset. The lives of the actors were mostly rather sad. We ended up wondering whether Batman and Superman were pathological liars. Superman claimed to be the son of a famous dead actress (a claim her sister refutes), and Batman had all kinds of stories about when he used to work for the mob back in Texas.

Throughout the film, there were recurring scenes from interviews taken in this very strange and possibly abandoned house. The photo above was taken in it, and Wonder Woman’s interview was primarily set in a bedroom while she sat on a bare mattress. Florence and I discussed whether this was intentionally done to highlight the similarities between her posing as Wonder Woman and prostitution. There were other scenes that may have also been in the movie primarily to emphasize that comparison.

I would recommend this to anyone who particularly likes documentaries about interesting characters. It will obviously hold some appeal to Comic Book fans, but aside from an apartment full of Superman memorabilia, a glimpse at the Superman Days celebration in Metropolis IL, and some DVD extra scenes set at Comic Con in San Diego, there isn’t really much here that’s comic related.

Urban Monsters #1

March 16th, 2008 by Martin

Urban Monsters #1Light and entertaining, the first Urban Monsters caught my attention because it was a premise I hadn’t seen explored before in comics. Not to say it’s a unique idea, but just one I hadn’t seen before. What if monsters were real, and had feelings like everyone else? And what if they were trying to integrate in today’s modern society?

Basically, monsters are treated a bit like an underclass here. There are many types of them, so some are treated differently than others, and of course, everyone’s prejudice is personal, so there is infinite room for variation. Perhaps the funniest bit, and this is intended to be a humorous comic, is when the zombie character is working at his office job, and gets yelled at because he doesn’t notice when his phone headset falls to the desk, ear attached. He then tries to staple his ear back on, and when that’s noticed, plays off that he thought the stapler was the phone.

I did think it was “interesting” that the comic is called Urban Monsters, and yet this particular (first) issue ends with the main characters driving across country. (Hardly urban anymore!) Nothing was startlingly good here, but it was a fun quick read, so I’m looking forward to the next one, to see where they take it.