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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 02:31am
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RecklessPrudence wrote:
JLTucker wrote:
Is it established in the film that he's a heterosexual?


We-ell... Sleipnir exists, as established by the Thor stand-alone movie.

I saw Thor recently and I do not recall a relationship with a female being established. So, I can't see how it's fact that he's not gay, as Zinegata thinks. Now, he could be straight in the comics, but they should not be used when discussing the movie's subtext.

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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 02:40am
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Uhm mythological loki is the father of Fenrir the wolf, the Midgaardswurm and Hel she who rules Hell, he is the mother of Sleipnir, he's done the deed with a couple of giantess, he tries to go after Freya etc he is all over the place.
I'm with Broomy he is an omnisexual - he'd fuck anything for a joke or just bcs he's bored and want to stir up trouble.
It's sorta hinted that he tried to seduce odin's wife at one time.

But that has NOTHING to do with Marvel's Loki.

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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 02:42am
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Zinegata wrote:
Bakustra wrote:
How exactly can you determine whether a meaning exists or not? Are there special instruments? Sartrometers, perhaps?


With you, it's easy - Check New Testingtan, and see if you're just doing your usual "Look at me! Look at me! I'm so smart!" skit. That's the problem with having raging insecurities like Loki - you desperately crave for an audience to prove to yourself that you're not just another "Puny God". :lol:


Hold up, I have a question.

What if, hypothetically, Bakustra hasn't made a single post in NT about any of this?



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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 02:43am
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Ah, yes! :facepalm: Of course, that one. My mistake, when people were talking about explicitly calling the sceptre a penis, I was thinking about someone actually calling it something like that - Stark's joke about performance issues didn't even come to mind.

Duh... I can smart think!

Anyway, how much influence is Banner supposed to have over "the other guy" in the comics? I never read much of The Hulk. Because how Hulk treated the other Avengers seemed kind of derived from how Banner felt about them. In the final battle, Hulk seemed to respect Cap (well, as much as Hulk respects anyone) and regard Iron Man as a friend, almost - which could reflect how we saw Banner interacting with them both, and bonding with Stark. Earlier, during the Helicarrier rampage, Hulk seemed to feel angry (well, Hulk, but more than usual) at Black Widow, which could reflect not only Hulk's usual rage at everything ever (would you call it existential rage?), but also how Banner was feeling with Natasha pulling him away from his work helping people and into this madness, as well as the manipulation inherent in doing so.

Also, about the Sleipnir thing - sorry, I was trying to make a joke referencing Norse mythology - I'm aware that not much of that holds true with Marvel's Loki.



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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 02:47am
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well IIRC how much banner is in "control" of the Hulk in the comics depends on what hulk we're talking about, since there's more then one.



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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 02:49am
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The 616 Angry Green Banner Hulk, I'd imagine.



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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 03:54am
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I think at the moment Phase 2 is no longer an option, because all the weapons would (I think) have to be charged by the tesseract. Unless, of course, Tony builds a factory and starts cranking out miniaturized arc reactors with synthetic starkium cores.

Thor took the tesseract with him, and I don't think they can do too much without it.



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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 04:27am
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JL->

I'm actually not arguing Loki is straight either. Like I said, he's much more of a suave villain than being simply gay. A better way to put it would be...

Lord Revan wrote:
that said Loki seemed more asexual then homosexual to me (while we know sleipnir exists we don't know if the origin is same as in norse mythology)


Quote:
I'm with Broomy he is an omnisexual - he'd fuck anything for a joke or just bcs he's bored and want to stir up trouble.


A suave villain isn't defined by their sexual preference. Rather, they are defined by their willingness to use anything - including sex / seduction - as a tool to meet their own ends.

Zab->

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What if, hypothetically, Bakustra hasn't made a single post in NT about any of this?


Then I would have probably gone straight to the point instead of making fun of Bakustra's parallels with Loki's raging insecurities and the need to be adored by an audience.

What's your point?

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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 05:21am
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I think you'll find that we have no-one by that name!



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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 06:45am
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Zablorg wrote:
I think you'll find that we have no-one by that name!
You know how there's two words in "plausible deniability?" ;)

RecklessPrudence wrote:
Anyway, how much influence is Banner supposed to have over "the other guy" in the comics? I never read much of The Hulk. Because how Hulk treated the other Avengers seemed kind of derived from how Banner felt about them. In the final battle, Hulk seemed to respect Cap (well, as much as Hulk respects anyone) and regard Iron Man as a friend, almost - which could reflect how we saw Banner interacting with them both, and bonding with Stark. Earlier, during the Helicarrier rampage, Hulk seemed to feel angry (well, Hulk, but more than usual) at Black Widow, which could reflect not only Hulk's usual rage at everything ever (would you call it existential rage?), but also how Banner was feeling with Natasha pulling him away from his work helping people and into this madness, as well as the manipulation inherent in doing so.
The Banner/Hulk control level varies wildly from one depiction to another. One semi-consistent thing is that Banner can have friends who can at least interact with Hulk a bit without getting torn to bits, but even that isn't always certain and one of Banner's big fears is taking out his friends with collateral damage from his own rampages.

I think you're right about that link between Hulk's hostility and Banner's attitudes, though.



Bakustra wrote:
You're not actually disputing anything I'm saying, just exposing your delusions of grandeur, delusions of adequacy, and delusions in general. There's no point in trying to communicate with you- I'd have better luck with a spider.
I always wonder when you say things like this- why don't you quit trying?

But you're obviously having too much fun complaining about movies you don't like, to an audience of people you affect to despise, and never ever backing down from mediocre lit-crit. So, not likely.

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EDIT: In fact, your entire argument is as follows: "If you think Loki is gay-coded, you're a bigot or a woman. In fact, the only thing possible is surface details and superficiality. Subtextuality is not allowed. Nor is depth."
Doesn't seem like that even to me, and I'm getting annoyed by him too. The linchpin has always been "you don't have enough evidence, and the only explicit evidence in the movie that has anything to do with your random idea is Tony Stark making a joke."

I'm totally unsurprised, and rather bemused, that you stick to your guns on this issue when the only evidence you really have is amateur-Freudianism and a guy like Stark making a dick joke. Phenomenal certainty, itty bitty rationale. But as long as it keeps Zinegata arguing with you, I guess you're happy.

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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 07:01am
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I haven't read the comics in years but isn't it so that as long as there's an enemy Hulk is angry towards he's some you can interact to a degree (savage Hulk at least seems to have mind of a child), but if Hulk is just angry in general he's someone you wouldn't like (or like to be near to)



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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 08:16am
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Bakustra wrote:
Honestly, I don't think that the heroes are themselves fascist so much as the movie presents a fascist message- when giving reasons why we should follow these guys, we get Captain America beating the shit out of some aliens as justification. To contrast, we have some pretty good reasons why we should follow Superman or Spider-man in any given presentation of them- Superman breaks off a conversation to rescue a baby from falling, Spider-man goes out of his way to do something nice for someone, and in a different movie, Captain America would be justified by being right and being heroic-in-the-moral-sense. I don't think that the fascistic tones are deliberate so much as the product of laziness and dropped plotlines.


See, I read that particular scene differently. That was less "I'm big and strong so follow me" and more "That's actually the real Captain America, not some dude in a costume". It would be no different that Superman proving he was Superman by taking off and flying; the right and good and moral stuff is implied by him actually being Captain America and having that reputation, stuff that wouldn't be associated with some random dude in a costume.

But I can see both sides on that one.

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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 08:21am
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Nieztchean Uber-Amoeba wrote:
I dunno about the movie not presenting the heroes as people we have reasons to cheer for. As we're introduced to them, Banner is trying to cure sick children. Tony Stark is pushing green energy. And I bet those punching bags were up to something.


Do the previous movies count for this? Because Steve Rogers is established as "stick up for the little guy" in Captain America; its referenced but not shown in the Avengers.

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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 09:52am
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Simon_Jester wrote:
Bakustra wrote:
You're not actually disputing anything I'm saying, just exposing your delusions of grandeur, delusions of adequacy, and delusions in general. There's no point in trying to communicate with you- I'd have better luck with a spider.
I always wonder when you say things like this- why don't you quit trying?

But you're obviously having too much fun complaining about movies you don't like, to an audience of people you affect to despise, and never ever backing down from mediocre lit-crit. So, not likely.


Ahahaha. See, you're expressing the opinion here that criticism is hatred, and that's funny, but it also makes you contemptible. Much like Zinegata, in fact, because you're writing checks with your fingers that your brain can't cash here.

Also,

Howard Zinn wrote:
Dissent is the highest form of patriotism.


James A. Baldwin wrote:
I love America more than any other country in this world, and, exactly for this reason, I insist on the right to criticize her perpetually.


You think that I'm writing all these words about Avengers because I hate the movie. You think that I'm posting here because I hate the people involved- not specifically, but in general. Well, you're free to think what you like, but in your case I wouldn't suggest broadcasting it.

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EDIT: In fact, your entire argument is as follows: "If you think Loki is gay-coded, you're a bigot or a woman. In fact, the only thing possible is surface details and superficiality. Subtextuality is not allowed. Nor is depth."
Doesn't seem like that even to me, and I'm getting annoyed by him too. The linchpin has always been "you don't have enough evidence, and the only explicit evidence in the movie that has anything to do with your random idea is Tony Stark making a joke."

I'm totally unsurprised, and rather bemused, that you stick to your guns on this issue when the only evidence you really have is amateur-Freudianism and a guy like Stark making a dick joke. Phenomenal certainty, itty bitty rationale. But as long as it keeps Zinegata arguing with you, I guess you're happy.


You're accusing me of "Freudian deconstructionism" now. That's hilarious on a number of different levels, and more importantly, it reveals that you have no fucking clue what you're talking about. I remember an Isaac Asimov article on deriving meaning and literary criticism in which he notes that the response of the reader to the work ultimately trumps the author's intent, because the reader is the one interacting and being influenced by the work. So while Tolkien disavowed the idea of the Ring as being symbolic of modern technology and industrialization, Asimov still viewed it that way because it worked. And there's less overt evidence for that interpretation in The Lord of the Rings than there is for interpreting Loki as a gay character in Avengers, or even for interpreting Bruce Banner as a gay character.

You're, like, willfully ignorant here. There's a reason why penis jokes about weapons are so common- because the penis is the unique physical manifestation of masculinity, and even the most vaguely phallic weapons can nevertheless be extensions and affirmations of masculinity. So can skyscrapers, obelisks, and anything taller or longer than it is wide, depending on the context it is in. Which is why all the piecemeal criticisms aren't effective responses to my argument, because my argument is built on the coming together of the explicitly phallus-identified glowstick of Loki's, the fact that he only targets male characters with it, his contempt for women, the sexualization of his brainwashing, the scene where he brags about his control over Hawkeye to Black Widow, and so on, to derive a certain queerness to the character. These elements in isolation would be the province of campy viewings and interpretations, something that you no doubt frown upon, but together they produce overtness.

I figure that even though it's pointless, I'll point out that I used "can" in the preceding paragraph, and not "is", because, again, this is dependent on context.

Finally, you're frankly entirely unequipped to deal with my argument because you're arguing from an in-universe perspective and I am not. It's like coming to a water-balloon fight with a nerf gun- no matter how good you are, you're still not going to win because you're incapable of interacting with the game meaningfully.



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I mean, how often am I to enter a game of riddles with the author, where they challenge me with some strange and confusing and distracting device, and I'm supposed to unravel it and go "I SEE WHAT YOU DID THERE" and take great personal satisfaction and pride in our mutual cleverness?

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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 09:59am
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Bakustra wrote:
Profit is inherently exploitative, provided we accept that people are paid for the work they do.


If a company isn't profitable it doesn't remain in business. Thus, part of the workers' labor goes into maintaining the company that employs them. You also seem to have this quaint notion that the owner(s) of a company don't also work.

Leaving aside the exploitative practices of some massive corporations I'm sure we can all name, a more typical business is the small business, where the owner is frequently working alongside the other workers and it's not unknown for the employees to get paid before the boss takes his or her share. When I worked in construction I was aware of several situations where I got paid for may labor when the boss either got far less or took a loss on a job because something had gone wrong. That's what folks like you miss - that it's not all about sucking the workers dry, sometimes the boss/owner takes a loss because an ethical capitalist will fulfill his/her obligations to pay workers and vendors. In those circumstances are the workers then exploiting the owner?

Part of the reason a business or owner doesn't split all proceeds evenly among all is to provide a capital reserve for the business to tide over such losses, make improvements in conditions, purchase new equipment or materials, and so forth. There are circumstances where labor/workers provide all their own equipment and tools, we call them "independent contractors". They typically are paid significantly more than hourly or even many salaried workers which sure makes them seem a lot less exploited but much of that "extra" money is devoured by the necessity of supplying their own business overhead.

You see, when I've worked as an IC I've had to spend time, money, and effort on purchasing tools, equipment, repairing stuff, office supplies, record-keeping for tax purposes, etc. When I've been an hourly worker the company provided all that meaning that if something broke I didn't have to fix it, the company just got me a new widget or dohickey. The company provides accounting services for much of the tax-related stuff (though not all). And so on. That's time and money I don't have to spend, and in that sense it, too, is "compensation". People who travel on business frequently can get perks like reduced costs on personal travel outside of business, which has monetary value. In my current job I have access to a shop I can use a limited number of hours a week for my own project, a shop it would cost me a year or two's salary to duplicate. People who work at the store my company rents space from get a steep discount on such basics as food and clothing which greatly extends their buying power. In fact, these days "compensation" isn't strictly about numbers on the paycheck. It is common for there to be other forms of reward when working for someone else that, if assigned a dollar value, vastly increases the "compensation" a worker receives.

But do tell me how, in your communist paradise, small business type things would be taken care of. How would your economic system provide such niceties as car repair, clothing and food distribution, and so forth?

You see, communism as practiced in the real world hasn't done all that well. I realize, of course, that "as practiced" is not a pure form of communism - but then, even the US doesn't have pure capitalism, either. I'm not totally opposed to all forms of communism, and in certain circumstances it can be the better system but those situations tend to involve only a very few number of people.

One of the on-going criticisms of communism is that if truly one is compensated based on need (not want but need) but contributes based on ability then by virture of some having far more ability than average they are called upon to exert far more than average... yet receive no more than anyone else. Is that just? Isn't that equally exploitative of talent and ability? And if you do give those contributing the most something extra beyond just what they need then you aren't talking about pure communism anymore, you've added a capitalist element: if you do more you get more.

Quote:
PS: You still are talking out of your ass. Please don't, as I'm starting to feel sorry for you embarrassing yourself like this.

In other words, for you this is all about scoring points rather than actually defending your position on something. Rather like your film reviews.

But, getting back to the movie - so, you're saying that the Avengers were exploited by Evil Capitalist Fury because (apparently) the only compensation they got for their efforts and risk was a lunch of shawarma. Which, for all we know, was paid for by Stark and the Avengers actually got nothing from Fury. Or is this the ideal of "From each according to his ability, to each according to his need" written down by Karl Marx in his 1875 Critique of the Gotha Program? The Avengers have great ability and thus use it in service to the world, but they only need lunch afterward so that's all they get. Is that just? You save the world at great personal risk, thanks, here's a sandwich for all that. Can we call you again next time? Is this a parable of the Noble Communist Heros being mercilessly exploited by the Evil Capitalist Manipulator? Or is it that Our Heros aren't taking more than they need, being NCH's, and absolutely not exploiting the poor proles they just risked their lives to save?

Nieztchean Uber-Amoeba wrote:
See, I have disagreements with Bakky, but this is awful, because it isn't really criticism. This isn't subtext - the movie says this explicitly, that Loki is like Hitler and wants to take our freedoms but really he lacks conviction because he's just a puppydog wizardgod who didn't get enough attention or whatever. That isn't subtext, it's repeated over and over, explicitly.

At least we weren't told he's a Muslim/Arab/brown terrorist - I was getting tired of that meme.

Of course, Marvel Comics has been anti-Hitler since the 1940's. In fact, arguably Captain America was created to fight Nazis. It's a theme that runs not only through this Movie but also through the X-men series since way back, and it is a motivating factor for both heroes and villains. Seriously, the viewer is beat over the head again and again that Freedom=Good and Dictatorship=Bad. Loki wants to remove freedom and install himself as not a fascist leader but as a god, a divine king, and absolute ruler in every sense of the word. The Avengers are free individuals coming together to oppose him, then freely dispersing afterwards. This isn't capitalism vs. communism, it's not about economics, it's about law and politics, control vs. freedom.

Funny, isn't it, that the only way Loki seems to get followers is by coercion, yet the Avengers, who ask for no power over others, are the ones who get people freely following them as a devoted fanbase?



Now I did a job. I got nothing but trouble since I did it, not to mention more than a few unkind words as regard to my character so let me make this abundantly clear. I do the job. And then I get paid. - Malcolm Reynolds, Captain of Serenity, which sums up my feelings regarding the lawsuit discussed here.

If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich. - John F. Kennedy

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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 10:03am
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Bakustra wrote:
EDIT: In fact, your entire argument is as follows: "If you think Loki is gay-coded, you're a bigot or a woman. In fact, the only thing possible is surface details and superficiality. Subtextuality is not allowed. Nor is depth."

No, “squeeing fan-girl” does not, in fact, equal woman. It implies a certain sub-set of immature female humans and does not represent “women” as a whole by any means. Adult women of intelligence and insight also recognize that in this movie Loki is not gay. The fact you equate “squeeing fan girl” with “woman” reveals your own bias in this case. It is comparable to equating “effeminate gay” with “man”, completely ignoring that “effeminate gay” is a small sub-set of men. Actually, it's a subset of gay men, just as “sqeeing fan-girl” is a subset of “women who watched The Avengers move”.

Facts – that is, what is presented – is what you need to draw conclusions. Your “surface details” as it were. “Subtext” in the form of persecution fantasies pulled out of your ass are what's not allowed.

JLTucker wrote:
Is it established in the film that he's a heterosexual?

In the film in question Loki's sex life, past practices, and preferences are not discussed or touched upon at all. He has absolutely no “romantic interests”. That's part of what's so bizarre about Bakustra's assertions. There is nothing about Loki's sex life in this movie and it's all based on traits that some people hold to be stereotypically gay but which in fact are also common among heterosexuals and even apply to some of the clearly heterosexual heros we know are men who have an interest in women due to the demonstrated interest in women (Stark & Pepper, Thor and Jane Foster, Hawkeye and Black Widow).

Zinegata wrote:
That's actually not superficial. That's actually a pretty nice insight to the nature of evil, and it provides a level of continuity from Thor wherein he kills his real father in order to try and be accepted by the Asgardians. His towering ego and his grandiose schemes exists to fill the dark hole inside of himself more than anything else.

Nitpick: Loki killed his biological father. Odin, having raised Loki, is very much a “real father” having played that role in Loki's life. (We'll just step past Odin's title of All-Father...)

But yes, the prior movie also demonstrates both Loki's colossal insecurity and the lengths to which he will go to. Loki arranges for the enemies of Asgard to invade sensitive areas of Asgard not once but multiple times, putting his adoptive family at risk of Terrible Things from subjugation to war to death, in order to serve his ego.

I can't recall a treatment of Loki's sexual preferences/orientation in Thor, either – whatever interest he shows in women in that movie is easily explained by a desire for power. You are left with the impression that Loki actually doesn't care about or give a damn about anyone else except how they can be used in his schemes.

RecklessPrudence wrote:
JLTucker wrote:
Is it established in the film that he's a heterosexual?

We-ell... Sleipnir exists, as established by the Thor stand-alone movie.

Marvel's database does state Marvel's baseline Sleipnir is indeed the offspring of Loki in the form of a mare and Svadilfari's stallion (I had to check – Marvel's Norse milieu is so different from that of the Eddas you shouldn't assume). That was heterosexual intercourse, to be sure, but with Loki as female and as a horse I'm not sure how exactly that would prove Loki-as-humanoid as either gay or straight. I strongly suspect the movie universe just isn't going to discuss where Sleipnir came from, ever. Until Sleipnir's origin is made explicit in the movie franchise one should be cautious in assuming anything, given that Marvel has several continuities and the movie universe isn't always the same as the comic book universe(s).

Given that the Asgardians had promised to do Very Bad and Painful Things to Loki if he didn't solve the problem Svadilfari presented, and Loki has always been about saving his own skin, it is entirely plausible Loki would have engaged in acts he normally would not have, and even found very unpleasant, in order to escape punishment implied to be Very Bad Indeed.

Quote:
Apart from that, I can't think of anything. But then again, I am bad at subtext at the best of times, and the stuff Bakustra says they're seeing... For one thing, I must have missed where they explicitly refer to Loki's sceptre as a penis. I mean, I heard "staff," "spear," "sceptre" and "stick," but not even anything as overtly phallic as "rod," so I dunno - maybe I saw a different movie to him/her?

Or maybe some people think anything vaguely stick shaped is a penis?

Really, it's that simple – Bakustra thinks anything elongated that came be held in the hand is a penis, or a reference to a penis.

Yet he completely missed just how vaginal Stark's arc reactor is. Except it's not a vagina, because not everything round is a vagina. Just as everything stick like is not a penis.

Spoonist wrote:
Uhm mythological loki is the father of Fenrir the wolf, the Midgaardswurm and Hel she who rules Hell, he is the mother of Sleipnir, he's done the deed with a couple of giantess, he tries to go after Freya etc he is all over the place.
I'm with Broomy he is an omnisexual - he'd fuck anything for a joke or just bcs he's bored and want to stir up trouble.
It's sorta hinted that he tried to seduce odin's wife at one time.

Don't forget power – Loki would be as willing to fuck for power as for a joke or causing trouble. Mythological Loki is fire personified – he's a good servant (when you can control him) and a poor master. He creates and he destroys. Loki spawned both Fenrir and Sleipnir. Mythos Loki was crucial in the creation of Thor's hammer as well as other many other important things. Marvel's Loki is more the Adversary, the devil, the bad guy of the pantheon with very little if anything good about him and no aptitude for creation.

Both, however, like power and to be in control. They like secrets and engage in deception. But, beyond that, don't think they're the same character at all.

Quote:
But that has NOTHING to do with Marvel's Loki.

Right. Because for most of the 20th Century comic books aimed at kids were barred from most sexual references. We're just getting to the point where you can get an openly omnisexual character into somewhat mainstream media like Captain Jack Harkness in Doctor Who and Torchwood – which I'll also note is a British production, he's a “good guy” (mostly), and it's often treated in a joking manner. The US – and both Marvel the company and the Hollywood producing its movies are very much American – is not at that point yet.

Loki is a Bad Guy. There's nothing joking about him. The movie is hoping to draw in kids as part of the audience (which means parental approval is required). Never mind just gay – the issues of transsexuality, and bestiality would make addressing Loki's sex life in the movies (assuming it's anything like even Marvel 616 baseline continuity) too explosive to handle.
CarsonPalmer wrote:
Nieztchean Uber-Amoeba wrote:
I dunno about the movie not presenting the heroes as people we have reasons to cheer for. As we're introduced to them, Banner is trying to cure sick children. Tony Stark is pushing green energy. And I bet those punching bags were up to something.

Do the previous movies count for this? Because Steve Rogers is established as "stick up for the little guy" in Captain America; its referenced but not shown in the Avengers.

Yes, in one sense, but no in another. Clearly, the movies are intended to take place in the same universe, but it also seems to me that Marvel is trying to write them so that you don't have to have seen the others to make sense of the one you're currently watching. You get more from having seen all of them, but no, in this particular movie I don't think that quality of Rogers is shown.



Now I did a job. I got nothing but trouble since I did it, not to mention more than a few unkind words as regard to my character so let me make this abundantly clear. I do the job. And then I get paid. - Malcolm Reynolds, Captain of Serenity, which sums up my feelings regarding the lawsuit discussed here.

If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich. - John F. Kennedy

Sam Vimes Theory of Economic Injustice

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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 10:34am
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Zinegata wrote:
:lol: Yeah right, I have delusions of grandeur. ON AN INTERNET FORUM.

Bakustra wrote:
EDIT: In fact, your entire argument is as follows: "If you think Loki is gay-coded, you're a bigot or a woman.


Correction: Bigot or "Squeeing fangirl / fanfic writer". Not "woman".

But apparently to you all women are squeeing fangirls, which again demonstrates your own personal bigotry. :lol:


"Fanfic writers", huh? Well, whatever, but I hate to tell you this, but those of us of the queeny persuasion tend to also develop queer-as-hell readings of media, because of a number of factors. Part of it is because actually being gay means that you're more sensitive to the homoerotic because you interact with it on a regular basis. Part of it is an attempt to claim media for ourselves in the face of token/minstrel representation. Part of it is because a relatively high proportion of out queers in the media industries incorporate deliberate subtext into their works. And none of it actually needs any justification.

But your presumption is that a straight reading should be privileged above all others. This is much, much closer to bigotry, as it reinforces the conception of queerness as transgressive and unusual as compared to straights. Or maybe you go for asexual readings being privileged above all others, in which case you may well be a troper or someone else not worthy of my time. Going after "squeeing fangirls" is hilarious and perniciously sexist, because it presumes that there is something wrong with gay readings of a work of media or male-oriented homoerotic fantasies a priori and without equal condemnation of straight readings or heteroerotic fantasies or female-oriented homoerotic fantasies- as though a terrible piece of slash were somehow worse than a terrible hetero fanfic or even a terrible piece of femslash.

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In fact, the only thing possible is surface details and superficiality. Subtextuality is not allowed. Nor is depth."


Actually, I never argued this. What I'm arguing (which you've sidestepped) is that analysis must be based on fact. Otherwise, it's a useless and irrelevant analysis.

In fact, I have shown an analysis that shows a deeper side to Loki's villainy - which again I cribbed off Erik Kain.

Loki is a villain who is possessed by a need to reaffirm his own self worth. Because, as Phil said, he has "no conviction". All of his actions are nothing more than his own desperate attempts to prove that he's actually a God as opposed to a loser lowlife.

That's actually not superficial. That's actually a pretty nice insight to the nature of evil, and it provides a level of continuity from Thor wherein he kills his real father in order to try and be accepted by the Asgardians. His towering ego and his grandiose schemes exists to fill the dark hole inside of himself more than anything else.


Please don't brag about how you're unable to think for yourself, please don't think that "evil people are all losers" is a meaningful or interesting insight, please don't talk about "relevancy", please shut up, please crush your fingers in a vice...

This isn't a particularly deep analysis either, and since your first attempt was literally taking what's onscreen and saying that that's analysis and now you're moving on to grasping the basic message that the film is trying to convey, I have to conclude that you are kind of like an idiot who keeps pressing the same button.

Broomstick wrote:
Bakustra wrote:
EDIT: In fact, your entire argument is as follows: "If you think Loki is gay-coded, you're a bigot or a woman. In fact, the only thing possible is surface details and superficiality. Subtextuality is not allowed. Nor is depth."

No, “squeeing fan-girl” does not, in fact, equal woman. It implies a certain sub-set of immature female humans and does not represent “women” as a whole by any means. Adult women of intelligence and insight also recognize that in this movie Loki is not gay. The fact you equate “squeeing fan girl” with “woman” reveals your own bias in this case. It is comparable to equating “effeminate gay” with “man”, completely ignoring that “effeminate gay” is a small sub-set of men. Actually, it's a subset of gay men, just as “sqeeing fan-girl” is a subset of “women who watched The Avengers move”.

Facts – that is, what is presented – is what you need to draw conclusions. Your “surface details” as it were. “Subtext” in the form of persecution fantasies pulled out of your ass are what's not allowed.


Why exactly do people think that literary analysis is something that is entirely distinct from any other branch of academia, such that they can spout off with shit like this that clearly shows how little they know about it? I mean, I don't know where to start here. I literally do not know where to start with this.

Broomstick wrote:
Bakustra wrote:
Profit is inherently exploitative, provided we accept that people are paid for the work they do.


If a company isn't profitable it doesn't remain in business. Thus, part of the workers' labor goes into maintaining the company that employs them. You also seem to have this quaint notion that the owner(s) of a company don't also work.


Why doesn't it remain in business? Because of the capitalist system, not because of any sort of natural law. So this isn't a meaningful argument in the practical sense, and it doesn't address the moral argument about exploitation. Unless you're talking about operating expenses, in which case I have to fucking laugh.

Also, you're not reading my argument, because I distinguished between an owner who works (most privately-owned or non-traded companies) and owners who don't work and are entirely dependent on exploitation for their wealth (publicly-owned companies). So a great deal of your post is not something that I will address, because it is founded on a misconception.

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Leaving aside the exploitative practices of some massive corporations I'm sure we can all name, a more typical business is the small business, where the owner is frequently working alongside the other workers and it's not unknown for the employees to get paid before the boss takes his or her share. When I worked in construction I was aware of several situations where I got paid for may labor when the boss either got far less or took a loss on a job because something had gone wrong. That's what folks like you miss - that it's not all about sucking the workers dry, sometimes the boss/owner takes a loss because an ethical capitalist will fulfill his/her obligations to pay workers and vendors. In those circumstances are the workers then exploiting the owner?


You literally have no capability to distinguish between profit and compensation. You are a fucking idiot, and you ignore that the majority of workers work in businesses with more than a hundred employees. Defining a company with five or four hundred people as "small" is a bit ridiculous, especially since "small" more often connotes business with closer to twenty people than a hundred, in which case only a fifth of all workers are employed by businesses that people would think of as small.

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Part of the reason a business or owner doesn't split all proceeds evenly among all is to provide a capital reserve for the business to tide over such losses, make improvements in conditions, purchase new equipment or materials, and so forth. There are circumstances where labor/workers provide all their own equipment and tools, we call them "independent contractors". They typically are paid significantly more than hourly or even many salaried workers which sure makes them seem a lot less exploited but much of that "extra" money is devoured by the necessity of supplying their own business overhead.


So the law is written to favor corporate associations and the surrender of control of capital. I'm glad that you understand that, but I'm afraid you're not willing to move on to the next step. In any case, the response to this

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You see, when I've worked as an IC I've had to spend time, money, and effort on purchasing tools, equipment, repairing stuff, office supplies, record-keeping for tax purposes, etc. When I've been an hourly worker the company provided all that meaning that if something broke I didn't have to fix it, the company just got me a new widget or dohickey. The company provides accounting services for much of the tax-related stuff (though not all). And so on. That's time and money I don't have to spend, and in that sense it, too, is "compensation". People who travel on business frequently can get perks like reduced costs on personal travel outside of business, which has monetary value. In my current job I have access to a shop I can use a limited number of hours a week for my own project, a shop it would cost me a year or two's salary to duplicate. People who work at the store my company rents space from get a steep discount on such basics as food and clothing which greatly extends their buying power. In fact, these days "compensation" isn't strictly about numbers on the paycheck. It is common for there to be other forms of reward when working for someone else that, if assigned a dollar value, vastly increases the "compensation" a worker receives.


Congrats on an off-topic rant about how wonderful corporations are for doing things that don't actually require a capitalist system.

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But do tell me how, in your communist paradise, small business type things would be taken care of. How would your economic system provide such niceties as car repair, clothing and food distribution, and so forth?

You see, communism as practiced in the real world hasn't done all that well. I realize, of course, that "as practiced" is not a pure form of communism - but then, even the US doesn't have pure capitalism, either. I'm not totally opposed to all forms of communism, and in certain circumstances it can be the better system but those situations tend to involve only a very few number of people.


How would car repair work? Well, for one thing, the workers and the manager would have an equal say in the direction of the business, they'd all probably get paid a bit better if they worked for one of the conglomerate repair shops, and they'd have a better quality of service overall without the profit motive depressing quality in favor of profitability.

The same thing for any small business- they would simply be run democratically as opposed to authoritarianly, they would probably have a somewhat better quality of service or product without the profit motive to depress quality, and they'd probably be better paid, especially if they did demeaning work that it's difficult to take pride in. I realize that these are no doubt terrifyingly utopian vistas, but I have oxygen masks in case you ave difficulty breathing.

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One of the on-going criticisms of communism is that if truly one is compensated based on need (not want but need) but contributes based on ability then by virture of some having far more ability than average they are called upon to exert far more than average... yet receive no more than anyone else. Is that just? Isn't that equally exploitative of talent and ability? And if you do give those contributing the most something extra beyond just what they need then you aren't talking about pure communism anymore, you've added a capitalist element: if you do more you get more.


This is fucking stupid. Like, you have no idea what the hell socialist theories of pay are based on, because you're repeating 1950s-era crude propaganda as fact. You are, in fact, talking out of your butt, and there's actually nothing capitalist about receiving more compensation for more work, since it is a factor in precapitalist economic systems and in the majority of proposed postcapitalist systems as well.

But hey, here's an idea how compensation would work outside the capitalist system. Let's say you have a doctor, a janitor, and a mechanic. The janitor would be paid exceptionally well to compensate for her demeaning labor with few inherent compensations, while the doctor would be paid well for spending her time to become a doctor and treat patients, but not as much because parts of her job are inherently satisfying, and the mechanic would probably be paid less than either of them because it took her less time to acquire the skills to repair airplanes or whatever, and her job also has inherently satisfying elements. In other words, compensation would be based on the job. Difficult jobs would pay more. Demeaning jobs would pay more. Jobs that require a significant time expense on behalf of the worker would pay more. This is something that it took me five minutes to come up with, so I guess that your imagination simply has failed you.

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PS: You still are talking out of your ass. Please don't, as I'm starting to feel sorry for you embarrassing yourself like this.

In other words, for you this is all about scoring points rather than actually defending your position on something. Rather like your film reviews.


No, your positions are ignorant and you're flaunting that ignorance and you're effectively proud of that ignorance and that is embarrassing for you, or would be if you would listen and realize that you have no clothes, O Empress.

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But, getting back to the movie - so, you're saying that the Avengers were exploited by Evil Capitalist Fury because (apparently) the only compensation they got for their efforts and risk was a lunch of shawarma. Which, for all we know, was paid for by Stark and the Avengers actually got nothing from Fury. Or is this the ideal of "From each according to his ability, to each according to his need" written down by Karl Marx in his 1875 Critique of the Gotha Program? The Avengers have great ability and thus use it in service to the world, but they only need lunch afterward so that's all they get. Is that just? You save the world at great personal risk, thanks, here's a sandwich for all that. Can we call you again next time? Is this a parable of the Noble Communist Heros being mercilessly exploited by the Evil Capitalist Manipulator? Or is it that Our Heros aren't taking more than they need, being NCH's, and absolutely not exploiting the poor proles they just risked their lives to save?


Please don't vomit meaningless, off-topic insanity all over the thread in the future, thanks.



Invited by the new age, the elegant Sailor Neptune!


I mean, how often am I to enter a game of riddles with the author, where they challenge me with some strange and confusing and distracting device, and I'm supposed to unravel it and go "I SEE WHAT YOU DID THERE" and take great personal satisfaction and pride in our mutual cleverness?

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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 11:09am
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Broomstick & Bakustra wrote:
communism vs capitalism
Again what you are discussing is tainted by americanism. Capitalism isn't really what you are talking about. I could have working small businesses etc under monarchy, feudalism, etc or even under anarchy. Mercantilism being the obvious example. So it's not this black and white fallacy between capitalism and communism. Capitalism isn't necessarily pro-small-business, nor is communism necessarily anti-small-business.

Bakustra wrote:
Please don't vomit meaningless, off-topic insanity all over the thread in the future, thanks.

Yes, please, couldn't you start a new topic where you do that with your metastuff + fallout from that instead of polluting the main topic. Thanks.

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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 11:49am
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Bakustra wrote:
Well, whatever, but I hate to tell you this, but those of us of the queeny persuasion tend to also develop queer-as-hell readings of media, because of a number of factors. Part of it is because actually being gay means that you're more sensitive to the homoerotic because you interact with it on a regular basis.

Yet you do not acknowledge that you yourself might have a bias. A "queer perspective" can lead to bias and seeing something that is not actually there, or missing something that is, just as any other perspective can lead to that.

Quote:
But your presumption is that a straight reading should be privileged above all others.

Why should ANY reading be "privileged"?

Bakustra, no one here is saying you're wrong because you're queer, or have a queer perspective. We are disagreeing with you because we don't think the evidence you present supports your position. You are the one who started calling everyone else delusional and stupid for not automatically agreeing with you. I'm calling you stupid and delusional because you're taking a difference of opinion over a fucking comic book movie and making it personal to you. Then it became about how the Evil Straight People are Oppressing the Gay/Queer/Some Other Group. This started going off the rails when you moved from "This is what I think" to "YOU MUST AGREE WITH ME OR YOU ARE INSANE/EVIL/BAD!!!"

Sorry if that's not intellectual enough for your taste. I tend to be a rather direct person from a rather direct culture. We don't always feel a need to dress up our statements in pseudo-intellectual gobbledegook.

If that's still too complicated: It's just a goddamned movie, get the fuck over yourself.

Bakustra wrote:
I mean, I don't know where to start here. I literally do not know where to start with this.

In other words, you can't think of a reply but you haven't the sense to shut the fuck up when you've run out of actual thought.



Now I did a job. I got nothing but trouble since I did it, not to mention more than a few unkind words as regard to my character so let me make this abundantly clear. I do the job. And then I get paid. - Malcolm Reynolds, Captain of Serenity, which sums up my feelings regarding the lawsuit discussed here.

If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich. - John F. Kennedy

Sam Vimes Theory of Economic Injustice

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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 02:59pm
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RecklessPrudence wrote:
Earlier, during the Helicarrier rampage, Hulk seemed to feel angry (well, Hulk, but more than usual) at Black Widow, which could reflect not only Hulk's usual rage at everything ever (would you call it existential rage?), but also how Banner was feeling with Natasha pulling him away from his work helping people and into this madness, as well as the manipulation inherent in doing so.


She also was antagonistic towards him. Everything she does broadcasts a complete lack of trust in Banner's ability to keep the Hulk subdued, if not under control. She brings an armed escort with her when she went to bring in Banner and then lied about their presence, even though Banner knew they were there just out of common sense. Or right as Stark, Rogers, and Banner are uncovering the Phase 2 stuff, Black Widow runs in and starts throwing accusations at him based on vague hints from Loki. The only time she doesn't actively antagonize him is on the carrier when he's transforming, and the only reason she tries to calm him down is because she can't immediately get away (which probably just made him angrier because he knew that she was just trying to manipulate him to save her own skin).

As to his relationship with others, the Hulk and Thor probably have a bit of a rivalry going based on their earlier fight. The Hulk sucker-punching Thor during the final battle was just a reminder that he remembered getting thrown off the carrier, and that he didn't appreciate falling several thousand feet.

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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 05:14pm
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Spoonist wrote:
Bakustra wrote:
Please don't vomit meaningless, off-topic insanity all over the thread in the future, thanks.
Yes, please, couldn't you start a new topic where you do that with your metastuff + fallout from that instead of polluting the main topic. Thanks.
Seconded.

Seriously, all the stuff about "capitalism is hypocrisy" and telling people to go mutilate themselves? That can go in Off-Topic, or Testing, or HoS, or straight to hell for all I care. So can the stuff about "communism is idiotic," for that matter.

It's flagrantly irrelevant and exists only so we can not talk about the movie in the only thread on the board where we can talk about the movie.

Broomstick wrote:
...
Don't bother. He's arguing with bizarre parallel universe versions of people, he's wasting your time, and if he doesn't know he's doing it he's too thick to convince of anything anyway.

He'll wail and moan about whatever he likes and invent arbitrary justifications or pull random things out of a hat and it's just totally pointless to talk to him when he's like this. And insult people, which is legal here but still incredibly stupid and creepy and annoying when taken to those extremes. "Please crush your fingers in a vice." Jesus Christ.

Broomstick wrote:
CarsonPalmer wrote:
Nieztchean Uber-Amoeba wrote:
I dunno about the movie not presenting the heroes as people we have reasons to cheer for. As we're introduced to them, Banner is trying to cure sick children. Tony Stark is pushing green energy. And I bet those punching bags were up to something.
Do the previous movies count for this? Because Steve Rogers is established as "stick up for the little guy" in Captain America; its referenced but not shown in the Avengers.
Yes, in one sense, but no in another. Clearly, the movies are intended to take place in the same universe, but it also seems to me that Marvel is trying to write them so that you don't have to have seen the others to make sense of the one you're currently watching. You get more from having seen all of them, but no, in this particular movie I don't think that quality of Rogers is shown.
Well, we see him that way in later scenes. We see Iron Man, Thor, and the Hulk engaged in mighty battles against the invaders. Black Widow and Hawkeye get their shots in and get to look pretty tough. But... they're all fighting, they're just squaring off against the invaders purely because the invaders happen to be there, or that's what it seems like.

But Cap? He's not just fighting for the sake of fighting. Over and over, we see him coordinating people on the ground, ordering police and military to protect civilians, risking his own life to protect civilians, and so on. So I think his "stick up for the little guy" behavior is made clear enough, if his scene with Loki in Stuttgart where he stands up to Loki (who is obviously more powerful) doesn't already prove the point.

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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 05:35pm
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Ah, good point.

Now there is an actual example of subtext.



Now I did a job. I got nothing but trouble since I did it, not to mention more than a few unkind words as regard to my character so let me make this abundantly clear. I do the job. And then I get paid. - Malcolm Reynolds, Captain of Serenity, which sums up my feelings regarding the lawsuit discussed here.

If a free society cannot help the many who are poor, it cannot save the few who are rich. - John F. Kennedy

Sam Vimes Theory of Economic Injustice

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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 05:40pm
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Simon_Jester wrote:
But Cap? He's not just fighting for the sake of fighting. Over and over, we see him coordinating people on the ground, ordering police and military to protect civilians, risking his own life to protect civilians, and so on. So I think his "stick up for the little guy" behavior is made clear enough, if his scene with Loki in Stuttgart where he stands up to Loki (who is obviously more powerful) doesn't already prove the point.


All of Cap's tactical decisions are based on minimizing civilian casualties. He sends Thor to block the portal, limiting the number of enemies coming through. He sends Iron Man to create a perimeter, keeping the enemy from spreading out where they can cause more damage. Hawkeye goes to a rooftop to watch enemy movements and direct the defense. He and Widow stay on the ground to draw the attackers away from civilians. Hulk... well, Hulk gets to go smash, but that's about as sophisticated a command as he can be expected to understand.



"This is supposed to be a happy occasion... Let's not bicker and argue about who killed who."
-- The King of Swamp Castle, Monty Python and the Holy Grail

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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 06:11pm
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Well I believe Cap (with the exception of perhaps Thor) is the only Avenger who has experience directing troops in battle. During WW2, he LED the Howling Commandos in multiple engagements against beings with advanced weaponry. Directing a bizarre mix of humans and super-powered beings in a fight against laser beams is something thats entirely within his wheelhouse.

Widow and Hawk are spec-ops assassin types, Tony is a super-powered loner, Thor is a medievel glory-hound/hand-to-hand fighter, and Hulk is just a force of nature. Steve was doing well directing the battle because he actually knows what he's doing when dealing with a battle at the tactical level.

Question to the marvel-ites; Did Steve Rogers ever actually get commissioned as a Captain in the US Army, either in the movie or comics?



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You kinda look like Jesus. With a lightsaber.- Peregrin Toker
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 Post subject: Re: Avengers (Spoilers) PostPosted: 2012-05-14 06:24pm
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Part of the problem with calling the movie fascist is that those who seek concentration of power are always the villains. The cabal that's running SHIELD are definitely antagonists, and Loki's quest for domination makes him the villain of the story. Nick Fury has quite a lot of power and information and is on the side of the angels, but whether or not he should have that power is left ambiguous at best; the movie's heroes call him out on it, and although he gets his shot at a rebuttal, concentrating that much power in SHIELD's hands proves to be dangerous when the cabal tries to nuke New York and Fury loses control of his own monster; only the fact that the Avengers are not directly under their control leaves them able to prevent a catastrophe.

Then, at the end, what do the heroes do with their great power? Thor takes the tesseract beyond the reach of anybody, even Fury (short-circuiting the Phase Two plan) and the Avengers go their separate ways, beyond the reach of whatever that cabal running SHIELD is. Captain America may or may not still be working for SHIELD (like others have speculated early, the new Cap movie will probably have him grow disillusioned with his handlers and dedicate himself to the ideal, which might put SHIELD, or at least that cabal, in an antagonistic role), and they still probably have Hawkeye and the Black Widow on the payroll, but everyone else is an independent actor.

Probably the most obvious underlying theme there is that separation of powers is a good thing. Fury acting unilaterally with Phase Two escalated the war; had Captain America been left as unchallenged leader he never would have called Fury on that; had the cabal been in unchallenged control they would have nuked Manhattan. Everyone who tries to be a leader would have gone down the path to disaster without someone to keep them in check.

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