Nov 19 2008 12:26pm

Graymalkin Lane 90210: is nothing sacred?!?!

Via SciFi Wire, we get this craptacular bit of (hopefully inaccurate) Hollywood rumor-mongering:

Twentieth Century Fox is gearing up to continue its X-Men franchise with a younger set of mutants, Variety reported.
The studio has tapped Gossip Girl creator Josh Schwartz to write X-Men: First Class. He’d also been offered a chance to direct the film, but declined.
Schwartz, the creator and executive producer of The CW’s teen soap hit as well as Fox’s youth-centric The O.C. and NBC’s Chuck, is expected to inject a next-gen sensibility into the superhero series, which has collectively earned $1.2 billion worldwide.

Really? Let’s put aside the fact that the First Class title—at least in the Marvel Universe—is about just that: the first class of Xavier’s X-Men. You know: Iceman, Beast, Cyclops, Marvel Girl/Jean Grey, and Angel, characters that are already present in the movies. Let’s put that aside for the sake of, ah, artistic license.

But the idea of putting the luminary in charge of such vapid Tiger-Beat-fodder (yeah, I have no idea if that’s still an extant teen publication, so sue me, I’m getting old) as Gossip Girl and The O.C. (Chuck may well be an exception—I haven’t watched it, but I’ve read good things) smacks of shark-jumping, demographic-baiting, and the ever-destructive hand of some over-zealous marketing drone.

Oh, Bryan Singer, why did you abandon the magnificent Danger Room you created for a half-assed Fortress of Solitude, leaving us in the hands of Brett “let’s-blow-shit-up-with-mutant-powers” Ratner? Won’t you come back, once you’re done fooling around with Tom Cruise (yeah, I did it again. I just really like that song)?

Sean T. Collins
1. Sean T. Collins
Gossip Girl is actually an outstandingly entertaining show--sexy, edgy, well written, well acted, beautifully shot, and rewardingly bizarre. Don't write it off because it's a teen soap.

--Sean T. Collins
Sean T. Collins
2. R.A. Porter
I'm not sure your judgment can be trusted, as you seem to think Bryan Singer has anything but an anti-Midas touch, deaf ear for dialog, and hack's mentality.
Pablo Defendini
3. pablodefendini
@ Sean T. Collins #1
I actually gave Gossip Girl a shot, since my neighbour wanted to watch it. I couldn't get past the soapiness, regardless of what other virtues the show may have.

@ R.A. Porter #2
Say what you will about Bryan Singer—I won't speak for his work outside of the X-franchise—but the first two X-Men movies were a fanboy's dream. The third, this fanboy's nightmare. "I'm the Juggernaut, bitch?", anyone?
Joe Sherry
4. jsherry
Couldn't they just do X-Factor to get the new kids in there? Seems like a better crappy decision then recasting the primary X-Men.
Sean T. Collins
5. Nick Mamatas
I heard on the Internet once that sometimes people make TV shows just to make people watch the commercials they run during scene breaks.
Eric Tolle
6. ErictheTolle
I think this entire rant is beside the point. the real question is: what mutants are they going to pick to act as a backdrop to Wolverene?

Really, the franchise should be called "WOLVERINE (and friends)". And if its successful enough, we could replace teh SciFi channel with the Wolverene channel: "All Wolverene, all the time".
Joe Sherry
7. jsherry
What will the SciFi channels do with all those reruns of Manticore and SS Doomtrooper if we turn it into the Wolverine Channel?
Evan Langlinais
8. Skwid
Chuck is little short of brilliant, frankly. You'll be hard pressed to find a more true-to-life representation of modern nerd/geek mentality and interests than that show portrays.

It's also well written, well acted, and ridiculously fun.

If you're not watching it, you're missing out.
Pablo Defendini
9. pablodefendini
@ ErictheTolle #6
Unfortunately, someone's right there with ya. Behold:
Wolverine and the X-Men, a new animated series from Nicktoons.
J Dalziel
10. BunnyM
@ Pablo #9

True, the new series is named honestly, and it's more about Wolvey than the rest of them, and the opening credits, animation and voice 'acting' *shudder* are pretty much what you'd expect from a cheap-cash-in show.

But, there are obviously some real, hard-core X-Men fans involved, and the characterisations are damn fine a surprising amount of time. And the little in-jokes are worth it*. At least to me, though I'm admittedly a serious Claremont/X-Men geek. The executive types seem to have planned nothing more than a cheap cash-cow, but some of the people working on it obviously love the franchise, and I'll put up with a lot for that.

(*) Fr'ex: The throw-away scene where a deer is grazing on the edge of the woods, only to be startled and run off after a gentle touch on the flank by the title character.
Richard Rhorer
11. starfisher
Sometimes it takes the near complete destruction of a franchise to pave the way for a dramatic reimagining of it. Joel Schumacher's disastrous Batman films so completely demolished the franchise that Tim Burton started that it allowed Chris Nolan to come in and basically recreate the entire mythology with Batman Begins and The Dark Knight.

I've seen a few episodes of Gossip Girl and nothing about them suggests the creator of that teen soapfest could match the sophistication of the Bryan Singer directed entries in the series. If they're looking to the CW for guidance on X-Men, I'd rather they go to Rob Thomas. Veronica Mars was much smarter and better acted than even the best 5 minutes of Gossip Girl.
Pablo Defendini
12. pablodefendini
@ BunnyM # 10

After reading some of the reviews on IMDB for Wolvie & the X-Men, I gleaned pretty much the same impression as what you're describing—I've queued to watch it, so we'll see. Oh, and Claremont/X-Men FTW.

@ starfisher #11

I don't disagree, sometimes you do have to hit rock bottom in order to re-launch (let's not talk about the bat-movies-that-shall-not-be-named ever again, ok?). It's just a damned shame. Singer was actually going somewhere interesting... I mean, what was X2 if not just a huge setup for some sort of retelling of the Dark Phoenix Saga, wrapped in a competent re-telling of God Loves, Man Kills? To see that squandered away in the third movie was heartbreaking.
Sean T. Collins
13. Amused
Found this while googling 'Graymalkin Lane'... Heh.

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