July 28, 2012 § Leave a comment
So, yeah. Yesterday (just before I went to see The Dark Knight Rises) my 12 (almost 13) year-old sister told me she had never seen any of the Batman films. And not just the new ones, but the old ones as well. It’s a concept I can’t quite grasp – probably because I grew up watching the Tim Burton version, on the telly on Saturday afternoons, or because I was slightly obsessed with Arnold Schwarzenegger back in the day so I watched that horrible one-we-shall-not-name far too many times before Batman’s nipples started bothering me.
Batman is probably my favourite superhero. We can go into the argument that ‘he’s not really a superhero because he doesn’t have super powers’. Well, fuck off. His super power is that he’s filthy rich and super intelligent and shut up because it does count.
It’s not just because Batman was darker and more mysterious than other superheroes, that came later, because I read the comics and paid attention to the story. Back when I was around 10 years-old (that’s the 90s by the way), Batman had a few movies out there, the brilliant Batman: The Animated Series and I occasionally caught up the old 60s TV show on late nights (along with Wonder Woman with Lynda Carter and the Hulk series). Good times.
I guess it was all a bit of determinism why I became to be a Batman fan as I was exposed to it so much. Also, I was a bit of a morbid teenager, I was very (and by very, I mean very) fond of Jack the Ripper stuff, Agatha Christie’s books as well as Sherlock Holmes’ stories. So maybe because Batman had a bit of detective to himself, I liked him so much.
It’s weird then, to realize that my sister (who is right now watching Batman Begins – courtesy of my DVD collection) will not experience the Tim Burton movies which I truly believe led the way to the superhero franchises of today. She will never have chills going down her spine whenever she sees a dead fish because she remembers the Penguin eating a raw one in the scene that has disturbed me the most in all of the Batman movies so far. She will have Anne Hathaway’s badass Catwoman, but not the sexy goddess that was Pfeiffer (therefore it’s unlikely she will dream of having a vinyl catsuit and vinyl boots to go along like I did – and yes I eventually bought vinyl boots but never wore them). But hey, at least she won’t have Batman with nipples (although I admit I love the Batcard joke in the Batman & Robin movie). She will have brilliant the Heath Ledger as the Joker, which I truly believe owned up to the character more than Jack Nicholson ever did when it comes to making me scared or nervous (and I was a child then, so allegedly easier impressed).
Much to my sadness, it reflects a sad reality: my Star Wars was that of the Phantom Menace. My dad (thank FUCK) was a fan of the old ones and made me watch it, but after went on raving afterwards about how the originals were better and I went there and watched the old ones before Episodes II and III came out. Thankfully, my sister has gotten the better of from this similar situations, because she has the Nolan brilliance to show her who Batman is in the big screen and all I got was fucking Jar Jar Binks.
PS.: Proud geek daughter fact: my dad took my mom to a Star Wars-all nighter for their first date.
July 11, 2012 § Leave a comment
‘Immortals don’t die, child. It’s not possible. The day the universe blows up in pieces, maybe they will vanish. Yet, they will not die. They continue to live in a different dimension.’
‘But when the universe explodes, they won’t have bodies anymore.’
‘Don’t underestimate the power of magic, Miss Reed. Mortals see their bodies as the thing that makes them being alive. They might believe their souls continue to exist in whatever place their faith says it exists. But not immortals. Body, flesh. These are just concepts. Perception, as you might call it, can change.’
As he said that, Dr Shaw pulled his sleeves up and closed his eyes. Suddenly, right in front of Agata Reed’s eyes, his body started to become paler and paler. His fingers were becoming transparent and she looked at his face, only to see the wall that was behind him.
‘That. Is. AWESOME.’, was all she could mutter.
‘Please, Miss Reed. Don’t use of this commonplace language in this house.’ As he said that, his body started to become visible again. ‘In fact, I would much prefer if you refrained from using it whatsoever.’
‘But it was awesome!’, she repeated to his utter annoyance. ‘Am I going to learn how to do that?’
Dr Shaw sipped his tea and looked at his watch. ‘In due time. But as I said, the body is just a matter of perception. You will see that when we study transfiguration.’
‘Yet, Miss Reed, you must be aware that it’s a very strenuous process and many have failed before you.’
She nodded, smiling, unable to hide her excitement.
He finished his tea and got up. He went to his desk, where there was a book. It had a black leather bound cover. The book seemed relatively new and he put it in front of Agata.
‘You must read this. For tomorrow.’
The book had nearly 900 pages. She opened her mouth in shock, but closed it just as she realized that Shaw was gone from the room.
She opened it with a small sigh. The book was entitled ‘A Manual’ and it didn’t have an author’s name or year of publication. Agata got up and grabbed paper and pencil to make notes. When she turned her back, she heard a loud noise. It made her jump and drop everything on the floor. She looked up and saw a woman standing by the door.
The woman was short and blonde. Her nose looked like a small potato and her eyes were of a milky colour. She wore ragged clothes and carried a small shoulder bag.
‘Ahn, hello’, Agata said.
The woman didn’t say a word. In fact, she wasn’t even looking at Agata. She was looking at the book. Suddenly, her body tightened up and her eyes narrowed.
‘Are you the girl Shaw is tutoring?’ the woman asked in a demanding voice. Her eyes were inspecting the room. Agata stared at her. ‘Maybe, who are you?’, her ear lobes were tingling, ‘How did you get in?’.
The woman smiled and shook her head.
‘Do you know who I am?’
‘No.’ Agata said defiantly. She wasn’t feeling comfortable in this situation. Where the hell was Shaw?
‘You must be scared. How rude of me’, the woman said, ‘My name is Morgana. I have known Shaw for many years’, she said, sitting down in the sofa and taking off her coat with an effort. ‘What is your name, child?’
‘Agata. Agata Reed. Are you really Morgana? THE Morgana?’ Agata asked eagerly.
‘Yes, I am. Come sit down. Do you have any tea?’
Agata wasn’t sure she should leave her guest alone in the living room. While she pondered, Morgana looked at her with interest.
‘Nevermind. I wouldn’t leave you alone in my living room either.’, she said suddenly. Agata blushed.
‘I thought you were taller. And a brunette.’ the girl said, shyly.
‘I was. Once. Many years ago’, Morgana replied, with a smile. ‘Now, where’s that old rag of a wizard?’
‘He…well…he vanished.’ Agata said, confused.
Morgana looked around the room and got up.
‘Yes, he does that a lot.’, she said, absently. She started to scan the shelves as if looking for something.
‘Can I help you with anything?’, a voice said behind Agata. She jumped on her feet. It was Shaw, wearing a wet raincoat and closing an umbrella.