DARK PART OF MARVELS DAREDEVIL IN HELL'S KITCHEN
THE GLORIOUS CORNER
Story By: G. H. HARDING
|Gloria Reuben And David Salidor|
NETFLIX’s Daredevil --- I watched the first three episodes of Netflix’s Daredevil yesterday . . . and really, really loved it. My favorite, though, is the third episode where Vincent D’Onofrio is introduced as the bad guy Wilson Fisk (a.k.a., The Kingpin).
Even though the first shot of D’Onofrio in Episode Three is taken from the back—while he stares at a piece of art, no less—it was positively chilling. Vinny definitely has the patent on bat-shit craziness (first shown to the world when he gained upwards of 70 pounds to play Private Leonard “Gomer Pyle” Lawrence in the late great director Stanley Kubrick’s 1987 Vietnam-war masterpiece Full Metal Jacket.
The locale of Daredevil’s Hell’s Kitchen exists in a dark, dark part of the Marvel Universe. It’s not the colorful Agents of Shield, or even The Avengers. And yet, there are references throughout all three episodes to certain incidents that occurred in every single Marvel film; most notably, The Avengers’ battle in Manhattan. You have to be vigilant and look close for these Easter eggs . . . but they're there, for sure.
Charlie Cox, who plays the Daredevil in this new series, is excellent. I wasn’t all that familiar with him before, but you can’t take your eyes off him whenever he’s on the screen.
Daredevil is the blind lawyer Matt Murdock, who lost his sight at an early age and is forced to engage with his boxer-father, portrayed by an especially good John Patrick Hayden. Elden Henson, who plays law associate Foggy Nelson, is good as well. But make no mistake, Cox’s the star here.
The show opens with Matt in a confessional; not apologizing for what he has done, but rather for what he is going to do. And there you have it: An unremittingly dark Hell’s Kitchen in the midst of Daredevil-land.
The fight scenes—and there are plenty—are all staged terrifically. And when Murdock gets pummeled in Episode Two, you can really feel his pain.
Comic-book geekdom aside, series creators Drew Goddard and Marco Ramirez have done this one the right way, matching the feeling and passion so consistently delivered in the comic book. A bang-up job!
LAST SHIP’S NOMINATIONS --- Sting's musical, The Last Ship, may no longer be playing on Broadway but it has not been forgotten by the first awards group to announce nominations.
The Outer Circle Awards nominations count three for the show, including: Outstanding New Broadway Musical; Outstanding Book for a Musical; and Outstanding New Score.
While the awards listings don't list the people who wrote the score, Sting alone wrote both music and lyrics and would receive the award alone if the show were to win in that category. John Logan (who penned both The Aviator and Hugo for Martin Scorsese, while creating the screenplay for Tim Burton’s ultra-bloody adaptation of Sondheim’s musical Sweeney Todd) and Brian Yorkey (best known for writing both book and lyrics to the Pulitzer Prize-winning musical, Next to Normal) wrote the book for The Last Ship.
The show’s three nominations were on the lower end of the list, while the musical Something Rotten! received twelve; the revival of On the Twentieth Century pulled in nine; and the new Broadway version of the film classic An American in Paris earned eight.
The Last Ship only had a few good weeks during its run, and that was when Sting (whose real name is actually Gordon Sumner, in case you wondered) bit the bullet and joined the cast. The show ran last year from September 29 to October 25 in previews, and officially played 105 performances between October 26, 2014 and January 24, 2015.
We saw the show two nights before it closed, and just loved it. These nominations are most deserved. Congrats!
NEW FLOWERS --- I listened to Flamingo (2010), the debut solo album from Killers’ frontman Brandon Flowers last night, and marveled at what a tremendous record it is. Really creative and very well-produced.
While The Killers has played numerous festivals so far this year, Flowers has also been working on his second solo album. "The record's not done yet, but I'm excited about it . . . I'm liking it," said Flowers.
The title of the new album is The Desired Effect, and it should be officially released next month.
Over the course of four albums and a “greatest hits” collection, The Killers have worked with an eclectic mix of heavyweight producers like M83, Stuart Price, Alan Moulder, Brendan O'Brien, Daniel Lanois and Steve Lillywhite. Flowers' next solo LP will follow in that tradition, thanks to his latest collaborator Ariel Rechtshaid.
"He's taking me out of my comfort zone," Flowers said of working with Rechtshaid. "Normally, I make demos and they're pretty similar to how the song ends up, but he'll take a song and be like, 'I hear this.' It's incredible–his palette and his range, what he's able to say. At first we were butting our heads together, but now we're hitting it off."
In the past year alone, Rechtshaid has helped shepherd Sky Ferreira's Night Time, My Time; Haim's Days Are Gone; and Rolling Stone magazine's Number-One Album of 2013, Vampire Weekend‘sModern Vampires of the City.
Organic, yet mesmerizing captivating. That Haim record was spot-on brilliant.
Although The Killers recorded two new tracks for their Best Of compilation, Direct Hits (which also includes their cover of Iggy Azalea's "Fancy" performed live at the V Festival), the band hasn't been released an album since their release of 2012's Battle Born. While Flowers is focusing on his solo disc now, he says that the band will return to the studio at some point. "I wanna keep being in this band," Flowers said. "I don't think we'll get too morbid about it, I think we wanna keep going."
CLOSING NOTES --- I am terrifically enjoying the 4 CD/Live DVD set Last Band Standing from The Ides of March with Jim Peterik. It was a thrill watching their live performance of their early ‘70s signature hit, “Vehicle.” All those signature horn licks are there, and Jim’s enthusiasm is palpable. He’s the legendary journeyman musician, who also wrote and performed the early ‘80s hit“Eye of the Tiger” with the group Survivor. A top-notch high quality listen, for sure . . .
Gloria Reuben’s last performance at NYC’s Metropolitan Room is next week. Don’t miss it. Broadway World called her show, Perchance to Dream, a “welcome contrast to so many cabaret performances that, charming as they may be, can tend toward flamboyant, even garish territory, with the performer sometimes going over the top. Reuben, on the other hand, knows how to intoxicate with just a droplet of the necessary spirits.”
Lastly, are you one of the over 88 million people who watched within 24 hours of its release the brand-new second “teaser trailer” on the new STAR WARS film planned for release this Christmas? I am—and if you haven’t seen it yet, what are you waiting for?! Check it out asap – it looks like the Force was definitely with J.J. Abrams while at the helm of the forthcoming seventh film in the world-famous George Lucas franchise, The Force Awakens . . .
Just listened to some of the new Florence + The Machine record, due out next month, with the fab title of How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful. "Ship to Wreck" is classic Florence. Can't wait for this one.
Photo Courtesy Of: Bobby Bank