14 for 2014: One Last Sherlock and Marvel-lous Movies

It’s a grey, rainy Monday and Christmas is officially over even if you have some leftover mince pies in your lunchbox – because, that’s right, it’s back to work too! Not feeling January yet? Well, here begins my countdown of 14 things to be excited about in 2014. Not just any 14 things either, but 14 of the coolest, date-in-the-diary, OMFG-worthy things that any and every geek should be excited about this year.

Cumberbitches, you’ll be happy to know your boy’s made the list. Following on from New Year’s Day treat ‘The Empty Hearse’ and yesterday’s frighteningly funny farce ‘The Sign of Three’, we have one final mystery to maintain our Holmesian horn. Can anything top second season finale’s Moriarty-flavoured dance with death? Featuring ‘The Killing’s Lars Mikkelsen as new super-villain Charles Augustus Magnussen, it promises to be a suitably dramatic end point for now. Check out the trailer below – get through this week and this lil’ treat will be waiting for you, Sunday night on the BBC.

It’s only a matter of time before Cumberbatch or Freeman wind up in a Marvel movie, such is the studio’s current Thor-like grip on the hammer of Hollywood. As the Marvel universe continues into its Phase Two, following sterling efforts from ‘Iron Man’ and ‘Thor’ last year that surprised by being better than they had any right to be, this summer looks set to be one of Marvel-lous movies.

First up, there’s the second outing for Captain America in ‘The Winter Soldier’ which looks set to give the dullest Avenger some cred as he pairs up with Scarlett’s Black Widow for some 21st Century heroics. More interesting though is August’s ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ which sounds and, considering the first official still below, looks pretty mental. James Gunn takes Marvel fans into deep space, with a villainous Karen Gwilliams and kick-ass talking raccoon (yup, he talks – and sounds like Bradley Cooper in fact) amongst the loony licks we can expect.

marvel guardians

It could be the next level of comic book movies, or it could briefly derail Marvel’s movie empire – either way, it’s not gonna be boring. Look out for more non-boring things to look out for in 2014 throughout the week.

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Here’s to a Geeky 2014

This geek’s been hibernating.

Since my last post, the geek landscape has gone through some significant changes: we’ve witnessed the launch of not one but two next-gen consoles (and I own neither, tut), Doctor Who regenerating and celebrating his big birthday (not in that order), Buffy’s debut on Twitter (@TheRealSMG if you didn’t already know), and Bilbo swapping Gollum for Smaug in the second ‘Hobbit’ movie.

Because that’s just the tip of the geeky iceberg, I feel like it’s time I got on top of all the latest genre news and pop culture shake-ups by returning to the blog and giving you all the latest in geek.

This week, I’ll be running down the 14 things to be excited about in 2014 from movies, games, books, music & more. However, to see in the New Year, I’m happy to announce my first prize giveaway. Simply head over to my Twitter page (@nicetogeekyou), follow and retweet, and while you’re there feel free to tell me the top geeky thing you’re excited about this year – one lucky winner will be selected at random and win a hardback copy of ‘Batman: The World of the Dark Knight’ from Penguin Books.

Holy cow, Batman!

competition prize

Prize giveaway Terms & Conditions
Prize giveaway open to anyone in the UK aged 18 or over. Entry closes 11:59pm on 19/01/2014. One winner will be chosen at random and notified shortly thereafter via Twitter, whereupon a postal address for delivery of prize will be requested. Entry methods as stated above. The prize is as stated, with no alternative offered unless the advertised prize becomes unavailable. If a response is not received from the selected winner within 7 days, that winner will effectively forfeit his/her prize and another winner will be selected in his/her place. Entry constitutes full and unconditional acceptance of these Terms & Conditions.

Halloween Countdown – Costume Inspiration #6

Want a costume that’s so hot right now AND rather horny? Go loco and make it Loki.

With part 2 of the ‘Thor’ saga out next week, Tom Hiddleston’s super villain with a ‘little brother’ complex is totes on trend and you’re less likely to run into a carbon copy, whereas my Spider-sense (keeping it Marvel) is tingling and telling me there will be plenty of Thors wielding hammers this Halloween.

Ergo: rise, puny Gods!

loki thor

Shields Up for Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

With ‘Dexter’ spilling its final bloodshed and ‘Breaking Bad’ heading for a combustible finish next week, cult TV fans are likely chomping at the bit for a new obsession.

It may be lighter and shinier, but ‘Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.’ is a good bet – and is unlikely to get a short-shrift early cancellation after debuting on ABC with the strongest ratings for a US drama in nearly four years.

agents of s.h.i.e.l.d.

Joss Whedon’s hot new property, following the exploits of supposedly deceased Agent Coulson and his fellow superhero shepherds, has done something unexpected following Whedon’s former glories that were all brilliant but, ‘Buffy’ aside, largely unwatched: it’s attracted viewers!

Of course, there was no doubting a Marvel TV show was going to do well following the mega-bucks earnings of its cinematic canon, so now us UK viewers can relax ahead of the C4 premiere tomorrow night knowing full well that it will at least get a full season.

Ready to assemble?! UK taster trailer below:

Daredevil 2?

Justice League fanboys may be bemoaning the lack of justice, but it’s official: Ben Affleck is the new Batman! Yup. There he is, all moody and ‘hey, I can out-Bale Bale’. And there’s some pointy fingers because, erm, yeah… he’s Batman, he can do what he wants.

batffleck

Remember ‘Daredevil’? Eesh. But Affleck (or should that be Batffleck) has come a long way since those ropey days, and has this year’s Best Director Oscar for ‘Argo’ to prove it. But is he the man to don the Dark Knight’s cowl? We’ll find out in 2015.

You So Naughty, Kick-Ass

kick-ass

 

Remember when Jim Carrey took a sledgehammer to an old lady in ‘The Mask’? Remember, like, two or so months ago when he practically disowned ‘Kick-Ass 2’, in which he stars alongside Aaron Taylor-Johnson as a masked vigilante, because he could not – in his own words – ‘support that level of violence’?

Holy moly. I haven’t seen the film yet (despite the reviews, it looks like rollickin’ fun so I would quite like to), but one has to wonder if the violence in a comic-book film can justify this response from one of its cast members when it’s just that: a comic-book film.

Remember Uma’s Bride chopping her way through The Crazy 88 in ‘Kill Bill’? D’you reckon Carrey had the Lucy Liu role in the bag but turned down Tarantino when he saw just how much blood and flying limbs there would be? Of course, I’m being silly, but surely this film can’t be showing any more deplorable violent acts than were shown in the likes of ‘Django Unchained’ less than a year ago?? Yes, Tarantino has had his anti-violence detractors, but not from Thurman, Jackson, Waltz, etc.

Following Carrey’s comments, it becomes clearer that the actor’s concerns lies with the characters perpetrating the violence being of high school age. Sure, it becomes muddy then (and The Daily Mail will lecture to you just how muddy all day long), given the most recent acts of violence carried out in schools, cinemas and homes in the US – but I would hope that ‘Kick-Ass 2’ would no more inspire a youth to pick up a gun than ‘Batman’ would inspire him to put on a cape? It’s a comic book, and anyone inspired to recreate any of the actions on page or on screen are surely already disturbed.

Another point Carrey’s side-step away from the movie might raise is censorship – that ongoing juggernaut that Hit Girl would totally want to beat the shit out of (as displayed in the Hit Girl-centric trailer above). In one way, I respect Carrey for not being bullied into supporting the movie when he didn’t believe it was the right thing to do, but surely the censorship brigade will only use an actor’s rejection of his ‘too-violent’ film as further fuel in their own ongoing war against so-called bad taste.

Whatever the case, ‘Kick-Ass 2’ has been beaten to the #1 spot by a black butler in the US and a buncha Disney cartoon planes in the UK. Have Carrey’s actions dented the film? Has all the talk of violence put people off? Or, and this is the question that will cause the anti-‘Kick Ass’ quotient to keep on picketing, is the reason it’s stayed from the top spot because all the people who want to see it are too young to get into the screening?

Hmm. All I know is that, if you pass me some popcorn and a ticket, I’ll likely enjoy every bloody minute – then leave the showing and return to my totally pacifist existence. Ka-pow!

Let There Be Marvel-lous Light

iron man3D FX Lights

Oh my deity! These go to the top of the wishlist, am I right?!

These Marvel-lous new wall light creations from 3D Light FX are unfortunately not (yet) available to purchase in the UK, but to have the Hulk’s fist smashing through your wall – and simultaneously offering illumination for late night comic book reading – makes any associated shipping charges a minor consideration. Which one would you go for??