August 2018~ Ant-Man & The Wasp

BEWARE- THIS POST WILL CONTAIN SPOILERS FOR BOTH ANT-MAN AND THE WASP & AVENGERS INFINITY WAR!

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Ant-Man and The Wasp begins back in 1987 and the mission to stop Soviet missiles- the same mission in which Hope’s mother, Janet Van Dyne, sacrifices herself by going sub-atomic to destroy the missiles. For many years Hope believed her mother to be dead whilst Hank secretly believed she was stuck in the Quantum Realm.

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The makers of the film did an amazing job at de-aging both Michael Douglas and Michelle Pfeiffer for this first part.

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We then skip a few years and the film picks up two years after the events of Captain America: Civil War. Scott Lang is under house-arrest for his part in breaking The Sokovia Accords. Hank and Hope are on the run as it was Hank’s tech that helped him.

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Both Hank and Hope have designed a quantum tunnel in the hopes of rescuing Janet. The first time the tunnel opens, Scott unknowingly receives a message from Janet. Thinking it was just a dream, he leaves Hank a message and is quickly “removed” from house arrest using Pym’s shrinking tech.

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What follows is the usual fun you can expect from an Ant-Man film. Much more family-friendly and light-hearted that the other MCU films but with its own storyline- rescuing Janet whilst stopping the shrinking tech falling into the wrong hands. Namely Sonny- a low-level criminal who wants to sell the tech and Ava (Ghost) an ex-SHIELD assassin who wants the tech to fix herself.

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There is comedy aplenty. From Luis and his outlandish stories to visual gags involving everyday items being shrunk or enlarged, including the ant from the end of the previous Ant-Man film.

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Evading the FBI and keeping Scott under house-arrest is another ongoing joke that is successfully woven into the main plot.

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However, like many others, I believe that characters from Ant-Man may play a pivotal role in defeating Thanos and undoing everything that happened at the end of Infinity War.

FINAL WARNING: SPOILERS BELOW!

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We know that the snap killed-off half the population of the universe, including many current Avengers. We also know from pictures that have been released that the as-yet-untitled Avengers 4 film will revisit the Battle of New York with Ant-Man and two versions of Tony Stark, so some Time Travel must be involved. The cast are also seen sporting some kind of device on their wrists. It has been surmised by many that these are some sort of time-travel device.

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I believe that after Janet Van Dyne’s comment in the first post-credit scene (there are two by the way) that the time travel is linked to the Quantum Realm. I also believe that Hope will play a part after she criticised Scott over the mission to Germany (Civil War) saying that “If she had been with him none of it would have happened.”

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Of course, the rest of the first post-credit scene threw a spanner into my theory. I’m still speculating that Hope, with the help of Hank and Janet will stop certain events happening and figure out the time-travel aspect, whilst the newly-added Captain Marvel (played by Brie Larson) will be the one to actually defeat Thanos.

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Will have to wait and see!

 

 

May 2017~ Heroes & Villains Fan Fest

Heroes & Villains Fan Fest is run by the same company that run the awesome Walker Stalker Cons that also take place at Olympia in February/March. I planned to go to this event from the day it was announced and it would also be the first event my brother would attend with me in 4 years, so I was hoping it was going to be good.

I knew how Fanfest ran their Walking Dead events, and yes, whilst they are pricey compared to events run by UK based companies, you have to take into account a variety of things. Such as the fact that they are a US based company so would be liable to pay some sort of business tax in the UK, they actually pay their staff (yes, they have some volunteers) whilst most UK event organisers run on volunteers alone (except for “management”), they bring a lot of their own equipment with them from the US and they cap numbers and still use two halls in Olympia. Personally, I’d rather pay more for a pleasant, organised experience rather than attend a cattle market, one such event was set to take place the exact same weekend!

Looking back at the guests they normally get for their US based events, it seemed to be a good mixture of people from DC and Marvel Superhero TV shows and Films plus guest from other popular shows thrown in for good measure.

The final line-up was announced over a series of months, with Stephen Amell from Arrow and Melissa Benoist from Supergirl headlining the event. My brother was interested in meeting both, whilst I wanted to meet Melissa, plus a few other of the other guests. 31 guests were announced in total. Unfortunately, 5 had to cancel for various reasons, including Melissa Benoist.

About 3 weeks before the event, someone introduced me to a new show. Designated Survivor. It stars Kiefer Sutherland (from 24) and also Italia Ricci who was attending the event as she had appeared in Supergirl as Siobhan Smythe/Silver Banshee. Now I don’t normally like political dramas but this was like The West Wing meets 24. I was hooked and polished off the whole series in about 5 days. I then made the choice to add Italia to my ‘to meet’ list and, as you will read, it was a good choice!

The week of the con arrived. An event occurred that could potentially cause problems. A terrorist set off a bomb at a music concert in Manchester, killing 22 (including children) and injuring many others. The UK threat level was increased to its highest level-critical. Would HVFF back down, or show these people that in the face of terror you never give in and let them win. Rather than cancel, HVFF beefed up security, and whilst it would mean things might be a bit slower, it would hopefully keep us all safe. It was the right thing to do. Show these people that no matter what, you can’t keep us down.

The day of the con arrived! I arrived with my brother at around 10.30am and he was finally able to meet my mate Fudge as she was there to satisfy her Stephen Amell addiction (which she did). I had a few photoshoots (as you will see below) and then my brother and I spent the day browsing the vendors, watching some panels, including the cosplay contest and meeting guests. My brother met Emily Bett Rickards from Arrow and Shantel VanSanten from The Flash. I think he preferred the latter! I spent some time chatting to Richard Brake who plays the Night King in Game of Thrones and was fascinated to hear how his costume and makeup (which takes 6 hours to put on) actually causes him to bleed when he wears it and, if not careful when using the toilet, he could lose an important body part!

We left at about 4pm after an awesome day.

At this point I would like to give a big shoutout to the HVFF disability team. My brother is disabled and uses a mobility scooter, and at the moment am unable to stand in one place for extended periods. The whole setup for disabled people was awesome. From line access to guest booths, to queuing for photo shoots and the quiet room. It was all awesome. I made sure on Sunday to take some cupcakes to the ladies (Steph & Anne) running the quiet room as they did an awesome job.

Day 2 came and I had a couple of photo ops left plus I wanted to watch the Captain America panel with Stanley Tucci (Dr Erskine) and Hayley Atwell (SSR Agent Peggy Carter). The panel was great! Both guests bounced off each other very well and the host did a good enough job not to be too intrusive and get in the way.

Apart from my final photo ops and autographs, my final task was to meet the awesome and very lovely Italia Ricci (and her husband Robbie Amell, who wanted my tee-shirt). I’d had some pins made in the style of a Presidential Election Campaign and had put her character from Designated Survivor (Emily Rhodes, White House Chief of Staff) on as you can see below.

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I also had a matching shirt made, which Italia first saw in the photo-op (see below) which she thought was awesome.

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Italia liked the pin and said she would have liked one for the director and for Kiefer Sutherland. Luckily I had more. I then had a quick chat, grabbed a selfie and off I went! Both Italia and Robbie are awesome and make a lovely couple. Plus, Italia loves pizza so HAS to be awesome!

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I had a final wander around the stalls, managed to avoided buying a very expensive Captain America shield and left at around 4pm.

Overall, it was an absolutely awesome weekend. I could not honestly find fault with anything. The organisation was spot on and there was so much space it was great! You could move around without problem.

My final guest list was:-

Michael Rooker (Guardians of the Galaxy/The Walking Dead)

Brandon Routh (Chuck/Legends of Tomorrow)

Sean Gunn (Guardians of the Galaxy)

Stanley Tucci (Captain America/The Hunger Games)

Richard Brake (Game of Thrones)

Maisie Richardson-Sellers (Legends of Tomorrow/Star Wars: The Force Awakens)

Italia Ricci (Designated Survivor/Supergirl)

I can’t wait until the 2018 event and I’m hoping that all of my brothers family are able to attend as well. The kids would look great dressed as Superheroes!

If you’d like to find out more, then head over to:-¬†heroesfanfest.com

March 2016~ Marvel Superhero Challenge

With the upcoming release of Captain America: Civil War, the latest chapter in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Disney are putting on events for kids at their flagship branch, The Disney Store Oxford Street. Through a colleague I managed to secure a couple of spots for my niece Jessica and nephew Charlie (Little Lewis was too young) to a preview event which would allow the staff at the store to test everything out before going live.

We arrived early enough to take part in the opening ceremony and the first 10 children were given a special Disney key. We wandered around the store for a while before heading down to the theatre where the event would take place.

There were 10 children in total. The children were split into two teams: Team Cap and Team Iron Man (just like the movie). There were ten characters, five per team. Each child had to select a character from a bag and that would be their character for the duration. Charlie and Jess ended up on opposing teams with Charlie as The Winter Soldier and Jess as Iron Man. After that there were a series of tasks to complete, each tasks earning a piece of a puzzle upon completion. The final task needed both teams to work together to complete the final puzzle.

At the end each child was given a nice set of stickers!

Shortly afterwards my wallet was bled dry as the kids went on a shopping spree in the store!