Before Infinity War // Marvel Collab Post With Amy

Hi, friends! Several months ago I approached the lovely Amy at A Magical World of Words to engage in a two-part Marvel collaborative, as both of us are avid fans and are extremely excited for the first Infinity War movie. To prepare ourselves for this endeavor, we have written a series of questions analyzing the ins and outsides of this cinematic universe. The second part will pop up towards the end of June, when (for sure) nearly everyone has seen the movie all across the globe.

Without further ado, the questions!

// Why do you think the MCU continues to be more popular than DC?
I think one of the reasons why Marvel continues to be a powerhouse in comparison to DC Comics movies and just in the film industry is because of the novelty of the experiment. This is a studio placing its foundation on a pillar of superheroes and an implementation of phases expanding cohesively over a decade. Creation of a universe which is canon to other movies with characters affected by events outside the time frame of their film takes time. Garnering audiences to care for this characters takes time, and seeing them still affected by large events, such as Iron Man suffering from PTSD remembering New York or T’challa still mourning over the loss of his father, helps audiences feel closer to the characters. One thing which DC failed to do is invest their time in developing their characters and their relations to one another feel sped up. An example of this is the introduction of Bruce Wayne at the end of Suicide Squad’s credits. There needs to be a cohesive connection and these things take time. Had DC decided to take time to cultivate this, their universe would come out much stronger than it currently is and give Marvel a run for their money, but sadly, they’re not there.

// What is one of your favorite arcs? Could relate to a character or a group, etc.
One of my favorite arcs has to be Iron Man’s in the third film. Some dislike its grim nature, but I always consume the development Tony undergoes, particularly in relation to battling past demons he (unwillingly) created while also dealing with the aftermath of New York. The way he is at that particular moment is appropriate and for the audience to see him deteriorated past the suit makes him more human because his struggles are evident. We see him suffering anxiety attacks, we see him trying to cope by building numerous suits, we see him nearly losing Pepper. While Tony always plays things off it’s always been consistent that he does get affected by things he sees first hand— callback to Age of Ultron, when he’s affected by the lady standing for an elevator, and Civil War, when he decides to actually sign the Accords because he realized superheroes do need to be reigned in. It’s just a big turning point.

// Do you have any speculations / worries / expectations about the upcoming Infinity War film?
One of my biggest worries in this two-part is trying to fit everyone together into two movies while somehow examining ways to explore new relationships and explore more character arcs. Infinity War isn’t a static event. Thanos is puppeteering the events and pulling legs (or in Rocket’s case, tails). There are certainly interesting pairings which can be explored. I think the writers realized this and thus why it’s seen in the trailer that there are groups, with a combination of both old and new interactions, to give a sense of dynamics which would work best. I’m also slightly worried about how the first movie will end. If it’s something soul-crushing or Thanos with all five stones, great, but if it ends in a cliffhanger you bet I will be rioting the shelves, waiting for a year and a half before the second part releases.

My other biggest concern is the plot of Infinity War and it’s effects on the Marvel Universe. Look, Robert Downey Jr. and Chris Evans said Infinity War would be the last movie they were on contract for unless they had renewed. Characters are (probably) going to die, and seeing how Iron Man and Captain America are the centerpieces of Marvel Phase One, I feel like big losses with incur although they will not be evident until the ending of part two. Can big losses reverse with the Time Stone? Perhaps. But that would be a huge cop-out. Other than that, I’m REALLY excited and have high expectations, and I hope the movies won’t disappoint!

// Which character is the most like you?
Definitely Spider-Man. I may not be as verbose as Tom Holland portrays him to be, but Peter Parker is an idealist at his core, somewhat lost in the midst of everything yet always finding his way back to doing what’s right because he feels like it’s the right thing to do. He’s also somewhat awkward and kind of does his own thing, and when he gets interested in something, he’s off on his own tangent spinning numerous threads. (See what I did there?)

// Speaking of arcs— take one character (preferably someone who hasn’t had much screen time yet as others and are relatively new, like Scarlet Witch, Doctor Strange, Ant Man, etc.) and discuss how you could potentially see them contributing.
I’m excited to see how Doctor Strange plays out— he turned from someone who was so concerned about regaining his own wellbeing to someone who has become super humbled by the mythical arts, or at least more humble than he was before. Seeing that he has the Time Stone and knowing Thanos is after it, just him reacting and undergo this arc will be interesting. I also feel like Gamora will play a big role, as one of the adopted children of Thanos, or just her and Nebula together and how they tie in with the main antagonist and their roles in defeating him is going to spice things up.

// With Spiderman’s character, specifically, which actor’s portrayal - since there have been three - is your favorite, and why?
I like all three of the Spider-Man portrayals for different reasons. Tobey Maguire's portrayal was the one I watched nearly every three months as a kid and he was good at portraying the awkward side of Peter Parker. Andrew Garfield has a nuanced weight when he approaches the role and his chemistry with Emma Stone is undeniable. Tom Holland may be my favorite, only because he's comedic yet also takes responsibility for things when it all comes down to it.

// Which Marvel character do you think has grown and developed the most since his/her introduction in terms of arc?    
I want to say Iron Man, but I think Loki is a very compelling character! He grew up from under the shadows of Thor despite his parents growing to care for him, and he’s grown from an ordinary trickster to someone who is willing to put aside his differences with Thor and save the Asguardians (Asgard not a place, it’s a people). Since his arc is somewhat complete from Ragnorok, it would be interesting to see how Loki deals with Thanos, considering the former did fail the latter. Thanos is pretty unforgiving.

// What’s one thing you think writers can learn from Marvel? 
I’ve expressed this time and again, but I do think Marvel and their capacity to fully flesh out characters and their undergoing arcs underneath everything is one of the best things they know how to do. They can take someone who believes in no restraint and change them to someone who will advocate for superheroes to yes be watched by the government. They can take someone whose people always upheld tradition and their family in the highest regard only for it to be shattered when the truth comes out. Plot plays big, but if you don’t have compelling characters or growth arcs, you’re out of luck.

// Is there a character dynamic/relationship you particularly enjoy watching on screen?
There are several, actually! Peter and Tony’s mentorship bouncing off one another is an interesting dynamic. Ant-Man richoetting jokes off the Guardians of the Galaxy could be comedic. I also adore Thor and Loki’s love-hate brotherly relationship. You can sure rely on them to go and “get help.” Also, Cap and Bucky because IT’S SO COMPLICATED. Now I feel a strong urge to rewatch Civil War...

// Is there a secondary MCU character you think deserves their own solo movie, and why? What would you like to see in that movie (from the character’s past, perhaps? etc)? 
Black Widow and Clint Barton deserve their own movie! There’s hints as to how the two met and began to trust one another due to Budapest, but actually settling on the history of it with finite details instead of murky ones would be nice. If not a movie, then a streaming limited series would be nice.

Thank you so much Amy for this wonderful opportunity to collaborate with you-- I had tons of fun! For those unfamiliar with Amy's blog, she is a book blogger & aspiring author who reviews the latest novel and film releases while also combating against romanticized abuse. Please go and leave her a kind comment! We’ll be collaborating on a sequel to this, discussing the movie after it comes out (tentatively posted around June so everyone will have watched it at that point) so stay tuned.

Adieu, March // Spring Break, Promposals, & Bets

Did March even exist? We whizzed through the entire month and we are officially done with a fourth of the year! Please let 2018 slow down. It's fun, but it's going by too fast and I don't think I can fully savor it with the pace it's running at.

Mush mush GO!

Pancakes + omlettes to deal with a rejection because WHY NOT.

There was so much visual art activities going on during Spring Break. This one is one of my friends trying to blend the chalk and replicate the image to see the full re-imaging collage. 

Hello, museum bear.

// I won two more recognition awards? The first is a second place medal for placing at the state level in Spanish poetry, and let me tell you, after listening to eighteen other people doing two different poems all spread out between levels four, five, and AP, I deserved a resting period that afternoon. The second was a local school award which I can’t really speak about much but let me tell you I was stunned.

// I accidentally made a bet with a teacher... technically, this is a substitute teacher who happens to be in the building a lot (my school has very consistent subs who show up), whether Mare and Maven get together romantically by the end of the series, despite never reading the series except for the first few pages of the second book. Since the final book is released several days after graduation, we both agreed to see at what happens towards the end of Glass Sword and King's Cage.

// Spring Break has been lovely. Going around, taking the time to read and prepare for the last couple of weeks, volunteering at the library with fifty screaming kids wielding paper towel swords has been exhausting, but worth it.

// I helped host an art night at the museum! It’s by far one of my most favorite things I did over the course of the break. Did you know all of my friends are super talented with chalk? Black paper + childhood medium = BEWILDERING MIX. Some of my friends went and we spent time playing giant Jenga, playing with bubbles, and visiting the fandom exhibit one last time before it closed.

// I helped with one of my friends’ promposals. THAT’S RIGHT, prom season is around the corner and while I try to avert the dances, it’s my senior year and I may as well go join in both the festivities of those going and not. Helping them get the sign and then recording the entire ordeal when it happened (then proceeding to squeal over it with the exchange students) has been one of the highlights. I may do a post outlining prom, so keep an eye out for that soon!

Again, click on the photos! They'll take you to the pages.

I read so many books over Spring Break! This is just only a small bunch of what I read. I'm going to miss when I have access to the high school library... a lot of the popular books get checked out fast at the public places.

First and Then // I have this reread ritual where I must read this book before the end of the last quarter due to its slow paced nature against a fast paced environment. It's insane because I'm actually dealing with what's going on in the book surrounding what to do for life after high school... minus the whole Pride and Prejudice romance plot, of course.

Glass Sword // This book suffered from second book slump. It's interesting to see how Mare and Cal's relationship develops while they find others new bloods, but other than that, that's all which really happens featuring an introduction to twenty plus other characters whose names and abilities are hard to keep straight.

King's Cage // Really disappointing... I stuck through with it, though. WE DO NOT DNF.

Renegades // I’m not finished with this just yet, but so far it’s pretty good! I’m liking it.

// I've been writing more poems again, ranging from subjects of speakeasies, eulogies, wars, internet food, and dead lions. To answer some questions, no, they are not all morbid at all, though the surface level likes to beckon otherwise.

// I have a new plot bunny, and it revolves around one of the spheres I always interact with frequently: theatre. This has been an idea which has been lurking in my head for sometime but I didn't know where most of the friction of the plot would arise from... until I realized a cultural clash of expectations would make things not only interesting, but very relatable for some. I don't think I'm going to write this story for Camp NaNoWriMo until the July session happens since it's important to acquaint oneself with the characters and the plot, even if it's just a brief grasp of it.

What has happened to you this month? Do you sometimes feel like you can't do art? Have you ever seen dog mushing up close? Comment down below!