by Dallas Thompson
So far, all of the Marvel Disney+ shows have been very impressive and have never failed to satisfy week after week. In fact, the first two episodes of the ‘Loki’ series have been my two most favorite episodes released on the platform to date and it’s those reasons that make a lackluster third episode of all the more disappointing.
When episode 2 of ‘Loki’ wrapped up, Loki and Sylvie (the Lady Loki-like figure) have stepped through a portal and seemingly escaped the Time Variance Authority. However, we see at the beginning of this episode that they have returned right back to the TVA. Shortly after, Loki and Sylvie go to the planet Lamentis (also the title of this episode) in the year 2077 and the rest of the episode plays out there. Unfortunately, while there are small reveals here and there, the episode as a whole really feels like a waste of an episode.
There are several lengthy scenes of the two characters talking and getting to know each other, which by itself doesn’t bother me, but when it is episode 3 of only 6 and the plot doesn’t really move forward much, that is where I find an issue. Episode 3 is also the shortest episode by quite a considerable amount of time, and I was honestly okay with that considering I found myself bored through this episode.
The chemistry between the two characters is just alright. It’s nothing special or even comparable to the dynamic presented between Loki and Mobius, in my opinion at least. It’s worth mentioning the absence of Mobius in this episode was sorely missed and I hope he is back for the rest of the series.
On the plus side, the visuals and production value of this episode are the best yet! This episode and the planet of Lamentis is beautiful and I enjoyed looking at the episode, but again, sadly thats where my enjoyment ended.
Episode 4 & 5 have been hyped by Tom Hiddleston as his favorites in the series and I still have just as much faith in Marvel as ever to finish this series even stronger than it started!
Maybe you enjoyed Episode 3 of ‘Loki’ or maybe you were disappointed like me, but either way we’d love to hear your thoughts in the comment section below!
by Dallas Thompson
After a long year of delays and disappointments, big blockbuster movies are finally being released in theaters once again. In the last month alone we’ve seen Cruella, In The Heights, A Quiet Place 2, and now the newest entry into the Fast and Furious franchise, F9. While Cruella and A Quiet Place 2 were significant releases, F9 is the first blockbuster of a truly massive scale, in terms budget and box office potential, to be released in over a year. In fact, it has been reported that the Thursday night previews of F9 made over $7.1 million at the box office, making it highest debut of the pandemic era thus far.
So naturally, just being back in the theater for an event film such as F9 feels great. But was the wait worth it? Does F9 live up to the hype? While reactions have been mixed on this one, I’m going to say yes!
I should say, I may not be the most qualified person to review F9 as the only other Fast and Furious film I have seen is Hobbs and Shaw. However, I think I can also offer a unique perspective as someone who is somewhat familiar with the franchise, but not necessarily a seasoned fan.
F9 relies heavily on backstory & flashback sequences. The scenes at the beginning of the film were okay, but I thought as the film went on the flashback sequences were better used. This review will not include major spoilers, so I will be very vague, but the final flashback scene should have ended the movie. In fact, my theater had several people stand up to leave as the final flashback scene ended, only for there to be another 3-4 minutes left.
As shown in the trailers, the basic premise of F9 revolves around Dom’s brother, Jakob, played by John Cena. The story not only explores the present conflict of Jakob’s world-dominating evil plan, but it also explores their damaged relationship. And yes, F9 is still just a fun (and super outrageous) summer blockbuster, but I found a surprising element of heart behind the story and I thought it was a welcome addition in between the endless stunts and explosions.
By the way, I really enjoyed Jakob as a character and Cena’s performance. With F9 and Suicide Squad (not to mention his spinoff Peacemaker series coming to HBO Max), I think John Cena has the potential to become a great actor and even more of a household name in the years to come.
Not giving to much away about the story, some absolutely absurd things happen in this movie, as is tradition with the franchise at this point. However, I don’t think it “killed the movie” as many critics are saying. Most of the stunts are very obviously impossible, but the general audience isn’t going to F9 to nitpick what is and isn’t possible according to the laws of science, the general audience is there for a good time at the movies. And yes, for those wondering, the rumors are true. Some characters in F9 go to space. And since this is a spoiler review, that’s all I’ll say about that part. One thing that helped with all of the impossible scenarios, is that F9 is self aware and knows a lot of the things that happen are impossible and the writers actually integrated that as a recurring joke throughout the movie.
Make sure to stay for the Mid-Credits scene - it brings a character in that fans of the franchise were likely wondering about throughout the course of the film. It’s a great scene teasing what’s to come in the next installment and it got me looking forward to what’s to come in the tenth film!
F9 has action, humor, cars, stunts, fights, a surprising hint of heart, and all of the things you have come to expect from the Fast and Furious franchise and is just all around a great time at the movies, which has been sorely missed by so many of us over the last year. If you’re looking for a fun time, I would recommend checking out F9 in theaters now!
Have you seen F9 in theaters yet? If so, leave a comment below and let us know your thoughts!
by Dallas Thompson
I still remember the day Kevin Feige announced Phase 4 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. On July 20th, 2019, we got the first true look at Phase 4 and how, for the first time, the movies and streaming series' would intertwine. We had known about Loki for a while, but as we began to learn more about the series, I couldn't help but become more and more intrigued with this series.
And then came 'Wandavision' - a show that surprised and blew me away week after week! Then, just two weeks later, we got 'Falcon and the Winter Soldier', a show that, while being very good, didn't quite live up to 'Wandavision' in my opinion. 'Loki' was promised to be something different and brand new to the MCU and the immediate continuation from where his story left off in 'Avengers: Endgame' had me counting down the days until it released!
Episode 1 - Glorious Purpose
Picking up from Endgame where Loki escapes with the Tesseract during the Avengers' time heist, the first episode of 'Loki' wastes no time. This episode was largely exposition as expected, but it still moved quickly from scene to scene and left me wanting more the second it was over.
The episode revolves around Loki being intercepted by the Time Variance Authority and as the episode progresses and Loki learns about the TVA, so do we, the viewers. Miss Minutes, a cartoon character comparable to Mr. DNA from the 'Jurassic Park' series, provides us with exposition and introduces us to the Timekeepers (figures who have sparked the most rumors from the series thus far) in a way that doesn't feel forced or cliched.
The episode has a great mix of exposition, comedy, and emotional moments. It becomes obvious that as things stand now, this version (or variant) of Loki won't survive the show because of the nature of the Time Variance Authority. We literally watch Loki as he watches key moments from his past and future play out before his own eyes, including some major deaths (and yes, Thanos killing him is one of the things he sees). There's also a moment where Loki sees a drawer full of Infinity Stones and learns just how worthless they are to the TVA, creating a profound moment while also being comedic, especially for long time fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
The episode ends with us learning that the TVA is hunting down a Loki variant and that is where we begin to learn what the rest of the series will explore. The episode, in true Disney+ fashion, leaves us on a cliffhanger while also delivering a satisfying ending to hold us over until the following week!
Episode 1 of 'Loki' is far and away my favorite Disney+ premiere to date and even was my favorite episode of a Disney+ show, that is until Episode 2 dropped...
Episode 2 - The Variant
Episode 2, once again, wastes no time picking right up! After we learn at the end of Episode 1 that Loki will be helping the Time Variance Authority stop variants of himself, we're able to get into what this show truly is going to be about. Episode 2 mainly focuses on Loki learning about how to fight off this variant with time travel. This episode shows even more than the previous that this will be the most "out-there" that the MCU has gone so far with Time travel, multiple versions of one person, the multiverse, etc.
The episode rounds out with the reveal of... Lady Loki? Theories (and first glance) would say that this mystery figure is the infamous Lady Loki from the comics, but the credits call her Sylvie. We will for sure get some more information on this character in Episode 3 and beyond, but this reveal got lots of fans talking online about the end of the episode! It also looks as though Lady Loki & our Loki are heading to somewhere on. the sacred timeline and I'm super excited to see where this story goes in the next episodes!
If the first two episodes are any indication, this 'Loki' series may have a shot at dethroning 'Wandavision' from number one on my list! The story is intriguing, the acting has been incredible, and the mix of comedy, mystery, and heart has been masterful. This series looks to be one of the defining moments for this new phase of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and I'm super excited to see what's next!
What have you thought so far of 'Loki' from the episodes we have gotten so far? Let us know in the comments below!