Q&A: Marvel writer who inspired ‘Thor: Love and Thunder’ talks Gorr the God Butcher and Alabama football

We sat down with Marvel comics creator Jason Aaron to discuss how he came up with the wild ideas that inspired Thor: Love and Thunder.

Fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe have been waiting with bated breath for Thor: Love & Thunder since it was first announced at San Diego Comic-Con in July 2019 to thunderous cheers.

Not only does the film promise appearances from fan favorites like the Guardians of the Galaxy, Valkyrie, and Korg, it also introduces two beloved comic book creations that have yet to make their way into the MCU: terrifying villain Gorr the God Butcher (played by Oscar-winner Christian Bale) and the return of Natalie Portman’s Jane Foster, this time sporting the hammer and armor of Thor. Both Gorr and the Goddess of Thunder were created by the same comic book writer, Jason Aaron, whose run on Thor began in 2012.

We sat down with Aaron to discuss where he got these wild ideas, how they may have been influenced by sports, and what he might be dreaming up next.

(This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.)

A Reddit user highlighted a massive football mistake in Top Gun: Maverick

Ok, this is a really good point.

Top Gun: Maverick is not only the biggest movie in the U.S., it’s absolutely obliterating box offices worldwide. Maverick as sped through the $900 million mark as it looks to join Spider-Man: No Way Home as the only post-pandemic movies to hit a billion dollars in ticket sales. It is already Tom Cruise’s biggest box office success, and it has also received high praise from critics and audiences alike with a 97 percent and 99 percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes, respectively.

Maverick features incredible aviation sequences, thrilling action and a lot of up-and-coming stars. With a lot of nostalgia that harkens back to the 1986 original, producer Jerry Bruckheimer and director Joe Kosinski made a few updates to bring the action into the 21st century.

It can be difficult to get everything correct, as one savvy Reddit user highlighted. Instead of the iconic beach volleyball scene, Maverick features an oiled-up beach football scene.

There’s just one problem.

As naval aviators, all of the game participants have Navy ties (although it’s not a given that they are all Naval Academy grads).

“However, the game consists of almost exclusively spread formations with forward passes, a clear slap in the face to the much superior triple option offense run by the service academies,” user puuma20 said in a self-proclaimed rant. “I almost got up and walked out of the theater.”

They’ve got a point. In 2021, Navy completed just 48 passes for a total of 681 yards and six touchdowns. Most impressively last season, the Midshipmen upset Tulsa, 20-17, without completing a single pass.

Man, what an oversight by the filmmakers. We need answers, Maverick.

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Lightyear is just another example of what Pixar does best

Buzz is back on the big screen, and Pixar’s latest is full of the heart and charm we’ve come to know and love.

WARNING: THIS STORY CONTAINS LIGHTYEAR SPOILERS! DO NOT READ FURTHER IF YOU DON’T WANT TO KNOW PLOT DETAILS.

I now understand why Andy so desperately wanted that Buzz Lightyear action figure back in Toy Story.

Disney Pixar’s latest film, Lightyear, hit theaters Thursday, and it’s simply the studio doing what it does best. It doesn’t have the same heart that Coco has, nor does it absolutely devastate your soul like the first 10 minutes of Up or the entirety of Inside Out. But it takes you into a far away world and really makes you care about Buzz and co.

Not only does it warm the heart, but it’s also visually stunning. It one of Pixar’s more gorgeous movies, rife with beautiful space vistas, lava fields and more. At times, it looks more like a live action movie than an animated one.

Opening text informs the audience that Lightyear is the movie that Andy saw in Toy Story that made him want the action figure, clearing up a little bit of the mystery around how this flick would fit into the timeline or canon of the Toy Story series. Hunky superstar Chris Evans has taken over the voice role of Buzz, and he brings a perfect mix of Steve Rogers rule following and young exuberance to the character.

Buzz and his best friend and mentor, Alisha Hawthorne (voiced by Uzo Aduba), divert the course of their turnip-looking spaceship to investigate a new planet. That duo — plus rookie Featheringhamstan (if you though that was the voice of the incomparable Bill Hader, it was) — unsurprisingly run into problems in the form of giant vines and flying bugs. In trying to escape, Buzz refuses the help of the rook (he doesn’t like rookies), and he crashes the ship.

As a result, the entire crew of Space Rangers, scientists and more are now stuck on this new planet. Lightyear begins testing out different fuel mixes to try and find the right combo that will allow them to hit hyper-speed and resume their original mission, but they find out quickly that each four-minute trip off planet for Buzz equals four years for everyone on the ground.

Filled with a deep sense of regrets over his mistake and responsibility to come up with a solution, Lightyear continues to make test flights. He lets his life and friends pass him by — each return home shows us the life that Alisha has made with her new wife, son, granddaughter and eventual death — all while trying to right his perceived wrong.

Thanks to his emotional support robot cat, Sox, the appropriate fuel mixture is discovered. But by the time he returns to the planet, 22 years have passed, the Hawthorne suited up is granddaughter Izzy (not Alisha) and an ominous group of robots have invaded.

Buzz, Izzy (voiced by Keke Palmer), convicted felon and demolitions expert Darby Steel (Dale Soules) and the very nervous Mo Morrison (the impeccable Taika Waititi) band forces to attempt to reconnect with the rest of the members of the colony cut off by the robot forces. Oh, and Sox. You cannot forget Sox. Sox (Peter Sohn) is utterly wonderful and must be protected at all costs.

They run into several challenges, none bigger than a face-to-face meeting with the mysterious Zurg (James Brolin) that is way more than he seems. Along the way, Buzz must learn to cooperate, ask for help and realize that although life may not go as you planned, it doesn’t mean that it needs to be fixed.

Lightyear is a ton of fun and a very worthy entry into the Toy Story lineage. There’s just enough nostalgia that connects us to the Buzz of years past, plus plenty of new faces that will have viewers of all ages laughing, stressing and yes, crying (it is Pixar, after all). To infinity and beyond.

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Chris Evans hilariously explains that he’s not photoshopped into Lightyear pictures at Disneyland

Ok, but are we SURE that isn’t a photoshop.

Chris Evans is undeniably one of the world’s biggest movie stars. He brought Captain America to the big screen in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and his Disney Pixar summer flick Lightyear is set to hit theaters June 17. The movie follows the adventures of Buzz Lightyear, the spaceman made famous through Pixar’s highly acclaimed Toy Story series.

To promote the film, Evans took to Disneyland’s Pixar Pier for some photos with some of Pixar’s most popular characters. When the pictures made it to the internet, however, some folks — including Evans himself — noticed something hilarious. Turns out that even the incredibly famous and handsome Evans doesn’t know how to stand for a photo without being awkward.

To his credit, he acknowledged the awkward and poked fun at his robotic stance, calling it a “very disciplined pose.”

I think we can all agree that his awkward is way less awkward than our awkward.

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A Duke Nukem Movie is coming from the Cobra Kai creators

Legendary recently acquired the rights from Gearbox Software.

Legendary Entertainment, along with Cobra Kai creators Hayden Schlossberg, Jon Hurwitz, and Josh Heald, is bringing Duke Nukem to the silver screen.

A story by The Hollywood Reporter confirms Legendary has acquired the film rights from Gearbox Software and will produce alongside Jean Julien Baronnet of Marla Studios, best known for the live-action Assassin’s Creed movie. The report also states that Schlossberg, Hurwitz, and Heald are onboard as producers.

The ink on this deal is still dry, though, as there’s no director yet. Legendary is also looking for a writer to tackle the material as well. So it’ll be years before this movie ever comes out.

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The original Duke Nukem is right up there with Doom, Wolfenstein, and Quake in terms of first-person shooters that defined the genre in the 1990s. Ask any PC gaming expert; it was a big deal back then. There’s not been an entry in the series for more than a decade, mainly because Duke Nukem Forever is awful. For real, don’t ever touch that game.

There are seemingly endless video game adaptations in the works right now. Some of the more significant projects include Twisted Metal, Horizon Zero Dawn, God of War, and Netflix’s Resident Evil.

Written by Kyle Campbell on behalf of GLHF.

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Grease 2 is actually a masterpiece and not garbage and here’s why

If you measure Grease 2 solely by whether it’s a worthy extension of its blockbuster predecessor, you’re probably missing out on what makes it great.

Let’s get this out of the way right damn now — Grease 2 is a severely underrated movie. 

I don’t expect many of you to agree. In fact, I expect you to quote-tweet me into oblivion without reading the column, per standard internet protocol. But as a musical theatre kid who grew up obsessed with Grease (side note: where were my parents), here’s the basis of my argument: 

If you measure Grease 2 solely by whether it’s a worthy extension of its blockbuster predecessor, you’re probably missing out on what makes it great. The question is not whether this is a good sequel. The question is whether you’re ready to embrace a movie-musical so brazenly absurd it’s somehow about bowling AND motorcycles AND being so in love with someone you adopt a secret identity and pray they don’t recognize you in disguise. 

BET YOU CAN’T TELL THIS IS THE SAME GUY

For all its faults, and HOOOO boy, there are many, Grease 2’s cult status is going strong 40 years after it bombed at the box office for the unforgivable crime of not being Grease. It was already a tall order to try to follow what was then the highest-grossing musical film of all time — but they also had to do it within three years and without most of the people who made it such a success. It didn’t help that director Patricia Birch, who had choreographed the Broadway musical and original film, was forced to start filming Grease 2 with an unfinished script. Production was “rushed, frantic and unorganized,” and the end result was a movie that fell far short of its predecessor critically and commercially. 

It was also a movie with catchy musical numbers, solid staging, imaginative choreography and plenty of sweet, sweet Paramount money ($11 million, to be exact, nearly twice the budget of the original film). And who needs a “focused plot” or “believable romantic leads” or “an ending that isn’t utterly insane” when you’ve got a classroom of 30-year-old actors with crow’s feet singing about the wonders of reproduction? 

It’s time to grow up and stop pretending this movie is trash when we all know in our hearts it’s an absolute triumph and here’s why: 

New Silent Hill film might be coming soon

Director Christophe Gans is working on the third movie.

Christophe Gans, director of the original Silent Hill movie, is working on a script for another sequel.

In an interview with French publication Jeux Video, Gans confirmed that he’s developing a third Silent Hill film. Translation comes via ComicBook.com.

“The script for a new Silent Hill movie that is totally independent from the two previous movies made and respects the way Silent Hill has evolved,” Gans said. “Most of the time, these are stand-alone stories. Silent Hill is a bit like Twilight Zone, the fourth dimension, a place where anything and everything can happen.”

That’s probably for the best. Silent Hill Revelation, which quietly came out in 2012, is a front-runner for the worst video game adaptation ever made. At least in my books. Gans did not work on that one, though.

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“I worked on a new Silent Hill, which is a Silent Hill of the year 2023 since the film would be released next year, in 2023, and not a Silent Hill as I imagined it in 2006,” Gans continues. “It is a Silent Hill for today’s audiences while being ultra respectful of the saga.”

Back in 2020, Gans began teasing the third film. So it’s no surprise that a script would be well underway.

Written by Kyle Campbell on behalf of GLHF.

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