Yes, There’s a Scene After the “Doctor Strange” End Credits

Doctor Strange!

“By the hoary hosts of Hoggoth!” says no one in this movie ever. 0/10, huge letdown, not sure why they even bothered.

In my comic-collecting childhood, I thought Dr. Strange was okay. He’s had occasional memorable stories from talented writers and artists such as Roger Stern, Peter B. Gillis, Michael Golden, Marshall Rogers, Paul Smith, Chris Warner, Chris Claremont, Gene Colan, Brian K. Vaughan, Mark Waid, and so on. The current run by Jason Aaron and Chris Bachalo isn’t bad and looks stupendous. The original stories by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko were okay, but never left the same impression on me that their three-year Amazing Spider-Man collaboration did. Doc has never exactly been an all-time Top 5 hero for me. I bought his series on and off, skipping entire years and runs. I don’t mind him, but I didn’t have to have a movie about him.

It’s a good thing Marvel didn’t ask me for my opinion before arranging for Benedict Cumberbatch and director Scott Derrickson to turn Doctor Strange into such a profound panoply of prismatic panoramas. I mean, I still cling to hope of one day buying opening-day passes for Squirrel Girl: The Motion Picture or maybe a Mary Jane solo movie, but I’m okay with the Master of the Mystic Arts going first. I guess.

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“The Martian”: My Own Planet Idaho

Martian Potatoes!

1000 potato, 2000 potato, 3000 potato, 4! Here a potato, there a potato! Potatoes, potatoes galore!

My son and I went to see The Martian two weekends ago, partly because we were both interested and partly to make up for how we “celebrated” his 21st birthday back in August by seeing Fantastic Four. I felt I owed him a do-over (and then some), and I’m glad Ridley Scott’s uplifting vision of Matt Damon, interstellar potato engineer, more than compensated for our last cinema visit.

America’s #1 film for four straight weeks doesn’t need any input from me, but one of Midlife Crisis Crossover’s myriad uses for me is to catalog my movie-going experiences. If I saw it in theaters, it gets an entry sooner or later. And thus it is written.

Alternate titles for this entry include:

“Red Planet, Green Thumb”
“The Astronaut Farmer”
“The Distant Gardener”
“Spuds Mechanics”
“The Tuber Whisperer”
“Old MacGyver Had a Farm”
“Mars Needs Ketchup”
“The Low-G All-Carb Diet”
“Taters Gonna Tate”
“Healthy, Wealthy and Fries”

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“12 Years a Slave”: No, It’s Not “Roots”-Meets-“Saw”

Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender, 12 Years a Slave

I love that the phrase “Academy Award Nominee Chiwetel Ejiofor” is now a reality. Whether in his first U.S. film role as the Serenity crew’s most formidable villain, or even as the heroic scientist who delivers the requisite do-the-right-thing speech in Roland Emmerich’s 2012, Ejiofor has been one of those electrifying talents who improves every script he’s handed. I had hoped he would move on to bigger and better things in the years ahead. With 12 Years a Slave my wish was granted.

Why I didn’t see it till now…

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