I saw Iron Man 3 t’other day.
How was it, you ask?
I saw it twice, first on Friday, then on Sunday. None of those times were in 3D, but the classic flat version of the pic was pretty good. So, obviously, there was some liking going on there. Word of warning, though: yeah, there’s some extra stuff at the end if you sit through the bajillion credits, but it’s not what you think. No teaser stuff about Thor: The Dark World (the trailer for it was shown before IM3), Captain America: The Winter Soldier, or Avengers 2: Whatever Tagline They Choose. It’s a funny scene, I thought, though my brother was a bit cheesed.
The thing is, I expected it to be worse. Historically, the third movie in the series, the sequel’s sequel, is usually bad. As in, Superman III, Return of the Jedi (Ewoks! Darth Vader going all pussy at the last minute! Ewoks!) Jaws 3D (though Jaws 2 wasn’t such great shakes), The Dark Knight Rises (gonna take some flack for this, but really, it was a mess), Godfather Part III, RoboCop 3, Spider-Man 3 . . . the one exception I can name off the top of my head is Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. And now IM3.
(Although I did have my doubts when that kid showed up, but Tony Stark was such a dick to him it cheered me up immensely.)
So, sequels to sequels are usually mediocre at best, train wrecks at worst. Really, what was going on in Superman III? I know there was a lot of cocaine snorted during the 80s, but jeez.
And Spider-Man 3. No words for it, just this image.
I am probably one of the few people who liked the Tobey Maguire movies (two! there were only two!) but still thought a reboot was a good idea.
And here comes the part where you ask me, Okay, genius blogger, how would you do it differently? How would you make Spider-Man 3 better?
Oh hey, thanks for asking.
First off, get rid of Venom. The character was wrong for the movie, at least the way Sam Raimi had set them up. They were supposed to be like the Silver Age Spider-Man comics, the ones where he had money troubles and girl troubles and had to fit in being a superhero between classes at Midtown High and later, Empire State University. The Green Goblin and Dr. Octopus were from the Silver Age. Venom’s a 90s character. C’mon, man.
And Sandman. Eh. Including him negated what Pete had done in the first movie, which was use his powers not to make money, but to catch his uncle’s killer. The story SM3 told, where Sandman/Flint Marko, was responsible for his uncle’s death, wiped that away. And it was stupid, to boot. So away with the Sandman and that storyline.
Uh, so who’s left?
Right. Harry Osborn. And hey, let’s not forget Dr. Curt Connors, AKA the Lizard. I remember waiting for three fricking movies for the Lizard to appear, only to have to wait until the reboot. Jeez.
All right, fresh start. No Green Goblin 2, or New Goblin, or whatever he was supposed to be. But Osborn still wants to avenge his father’s death, so let’s start there.
Simple: he creates another super villain using his father’s technology/chemicals, someone who can kill Spider-Man while Osborn keeps his hands clean. And now we introduce the Scorpion, another Silver Age-conceived character. (Fun Fact: J. Jonah Jameson financed his creation in the comic books.) Complete with mind-controlled tail, with swatting action and an electric shock blast, I dunno, something cool. Osborn hires him because of his background in chemistry; maybe he used to work for OsCorp or something, but got fired for something criminal.
And now to the Lizard. Pete is Connors’s lab assistant. Together, they create a drug that can regenerate limbs, based on reptiles. Connors uses it on himself, because science. At first, things are groovy. He explains away the regrown limb by wearing a glove and telling everyone it’s a prosthetic.
Of course, the grooviness doesn’t last, and Connors transforms into a bipedal lizard, wearing a lab coat and pants, because this is a PG movie. Instead of world domination and lotsa lizard buddies, though, all he wants is to be left alone. So he hides in the sewers, scaring the crap out of the city on his way down a manhole.
When is a super villain not a super villain? When he’s a giant lizard who just wants to soak in your toilet water. Thus, my version avoids the pitfall of too many bad guys.
There’s an antidote though, because Pete created it, not trusting his doc buddy to not experiment on himself. All Pete has to do is force Connors to drink it.
Only he can’t, because while Connors is growing scales and a tail, the Scorpion is kicking his ass. He leaves Spidey for dead and goes on a rampage, because that is what happens when you pay a shady guy with a background in chemistry to tweak your father’s secret super strength formula.
And maybe there’s a failsafe or something in the Scorpion costume to prevent that from happening, something that would destroy the suit and its wearer, only it gets damaged during the fight, or the Scorpion finds out about it and disconnects it. Now Osborn has the Scorpion and Spidey to worry about.
Blah blah blah, action, character development, blah blah blah, webs, climatic battle, Scorpion is defeated, Lizard is cured–maybe–blah blah, song, credits, please throw away your popcorn and soda containers.
There. Just made a better Spidey 3. You are welcome.