Standing in line at Tesco at 11pm my purchase of whiskey and bin-liners has the till attendant smirking and the customer behind me sniggering. He is wearing a turquoise raincoat and playing with his box of vitamins on the conveyer belt. What right has he to laugh? There’s no better way to clear out your wardrobe than indulging in some late-night spirits.
We went to see Hulk last night. You’ve all probably read the oh-so-clever Guardian review that slates it, in Hulk language? You could anticipate the critical reaction a mile off because the first Hulk movie had everything going for it. It was smart, beautiful, unusual and most importantly, it flopped. The stupid proles didn’t like the Nietzschean/Christian swing-at-the-moon ambition of the plot. They wanted HULK SMASH! So when Edward Norton and co come along to give us what we want, the critics are inevitably going to punish those who dare challenge Ang Lee and SMASH it.
Critic remember Ang Lee version. Ang Lee version slagged off. Yet rubbish new Hulk film make that look like Citizen Kane.
My ex housemate thinks that Hulk is the perfect American superhero. He best captures the character of America. Most of the time he is absolutely charming. Handsome, but not in a male-model kind of way. Smart and rational but still has a sensitive side. But then every now and again something goes wrong and he morphs into this monsterous alter-ego that will lay waste to everything in its path. While still wearing shorts. Cos even mindless violence is no reason to be indecent!
I tend to agree with Pete Rollins that Batman is the ultimate American superhero. Agreeing with Pete Rollins? Whoever thought they’d see Critical Realist Zoomy write that. Old Man McCrory will be spitting out his Peet’s coffee as he reads it. To sum up the argument, Bruce Wayne’s father hoped to clean up the streets of Gotham through philantrophy and Batman seeks to continue the quest his billionaire father began. It’s just that Batman’s overt, amoral violence is the purer, distilled version, the natural progression of his father’s capitalism.
Back to Hulk. It’s actually really good. And I’m not just saying that because Liv Tyler is in it and gosh darned it sure is nice to look at her. The previous movie had Jennifer Connolly after all. But it’s a rip roaring 114 minutes. It’s not deep. But it is fun. And I went to the cinema in June so I can hardly expect to receive a masterclass in existentialist drama. Plus, the Stark industries ending is just so amazingly cool that you can’t help but love the whole idea of a big Marvel Comics get-together.
Your Correspondent, Replaced for this edition by his non-union Mexican equivalent