Sunday, February 21, 2021

Order in the Universe

Lockdown has been a bit of a strain on everyone, especially mentally. While I've been grateful not to be out in the public, being exposed to the threat of the virus, it has been hard to concentrate on things. Luckily, I've had plenty of writing to keep my occupied, with both WILD and something else (that I'm not sure if I can talk about yet).

But when I haven't been writing, I've wanted as big a distraction from the real world as possible. Thinking about the virus, what it has done to everyone, all the people we've lost, those who deny its dangers. Heck, I ended up with counselling last year from having to go out among people for work.

So, to distract myself from the real world, I've been watching a lot of movies and TV. When I mean, a lot, I mean A LOT...

When Disney+ started, we had this ridiculous idea of rewatching all of Star Wars in chronological order of the events. Okay, so we didn't re-jig the episodes of The Clone Wars into event order, but we watched everything...

Starting with Episode I: The Phantom Menace, Episode II: Attack of the Clones, The Clone Wars (all seven seasons), Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, Solo: A Star Wars Story, Rebels (all four seasons), Rogue One, Episode IV: A New Hope, Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back, Episode VI: Return of the Jedi, The Mandalorian, Episode VII: The Force Awakens, Resistance (season 1), Episode VIII: The Last Jedi, Resistance (season 2) and finally, Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker.

Was great to watch everything in this order. Took a long time, we didn't marathon it or anything, and after many months, we finished the Star Wars rewatch about a week ago. The highlights were definitely rewatching The Clone Wars and Rebels. Rebels is such a good series. Seriously, why haven't you watched it yet?

Anyway, that was Star Wars done... so what do I watch to distract myself next?

The X-Files is going onto Disney+ in a few days, despite me already having it on VHS and DVD (but not Bluray, much to my disgust... and can you get it on Bluray now without a lottery win? No. Why have they discontinued it? - I know, probably to make you get Disney+). 

After watching the weekly episode of WandaVision there seemed to be one really obvious rewatch to do... the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe... in chronological order. 

Now, I'm not going to be pedantic - I know some of the episodes of Agents of SHIELD involve time travel, but I'm going to stick with the time the team should have been in if they weren't knocked out of time, or in an alternate dimension, alternate future, etc... So we're sticking to the order that DigitalSpy recommended.

So, we started with Captain America: The First Avenger, (my second favourite movie in the MCU... you'll have to wait if you want to know my favourite)... followed by the fantastic Agent Carter (seasons 1 & 2). Why did that ever get cancelled? Great series, and great to watch it again.

Okay, so you know I said I wasn't being pedantic? Well, maybe a little. Agent Carter is followed by the strange 'alternate version' with Marvel One-Shot: Agent Carter (found on the Iron Man 3 Bluray). Peggy's back in New York and being treated like crap, before Howard Stark gets her to start up SHIELD. The beginning is like a prequel to the TV series, but it definitely ends afterwards with Carter's big new assignment. 

There's a big time-jump in the timeline from the 1940's to the 1990's, as the 'one-shot' is followed by Captain Marvel (may have to look into what happened to the Tesseract between Howard Stark finding it at the bottom of the ocean to Lawson using it to power the lightspeed engine), Iron Man, Iron Man 2, The Incredible Hulk (not on Disney+ to due rights issues, but it's on Netflix if you want to keep up and don't own the disc), and then onto the 'one-shots' again...

Marvel One-Shot: The Consultant is next (on the Thor bluray), explaining the appearance of Tony Stark at the end of The Incredible Hulk in a great bit of retconning. Along with Marvel One-Shot: A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Thor's Hammer (on the Captain America bluray). You could so tell they were testing the water for Agent Coulson to get his own spin-off series. This leads in nicely to Thor (The Mighty Avenger), and the big team up movie The Avengers (or Avengers Assemble as it was called over here). A movie I have a bit of a history with as it was my first big press conference (yes, I was in the same room as 90% of the Avengers) but it occurred just as my mother was hospitalised. Anyway, that's another story...

It's been really cool watching these all again, despite us having watched them dozens and dozens of times before. Heck, I can probably recite huge chunks of Captain America and Thor off by heart. 

Topping off MCU Phase 1, we squeezed in Marvel One-Shot: Item 47 (which again, was so setting up a SHIELD spin-off, which can be found on the Avengers bluray) before making a start on Phase 2 this morning. 

We started Phase 2 with Iron Man 3, and the Marvel One-Shot: All Hail The King (which I do think is Ben Kingsley's finest performance, found on the Thor: The Dark World bluray). 

And now we're onto a rewatch of season 1 of Agents of SHIELD. Must admit, I love Agents of SHIELD, though I know a lot of people gave up on season one for it being a bit slow. Did they ever miss out! The whole Agents of HYDRA series and the time travel seasons? Awesome. Love it. Of course, we're starting slow, and stopping at the right time to insert the movies and more from Phase 2. So we're going to keep watching until the end of Episode 7, then onto Thor: The Dark World. We're on Episode 3 at the moment (with Ian Hart appearing, looking identical to a very good friend of mine). 

I'll let you know how we get on. It's been a great distraction from the impending doom of returning to the outside world. 

Stay safe everyone, 

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