What do Captain Marvel and Mary Poppins have in common? They’re both super-capable women at the top of their profession, who also happen to have a host of superpowers to help them get the job done. It doesn’t matter whether the job is intergalactic warfare or domestic care and emotional repair; this week in the Trailer Park proves that a woman’s place is in the air, flying to save someone:
Well all right then, Carol! In case you were wondering about that moment at 1:31; no, it’s not just you: Brie Larson really does haul off and wallop an old lady on the subway. The memes are practically making themselves, but apparently, we’ll just have to wait until Captain Marvel’s March 2019 release to get answers. From the cars and the clothes to the Blockbuster Video crash-landing, we can tell it’s time to cue the sweet, sweet mid-90s nostalgia, which (as we know) is a millennial’s manna from heaven. Nick Fury with two eyes is, like, the metaphor for the adolescence we all wish we could return to — if only to warn ourselves about all of the things to come — but, sadly, cannot.
Nicole Perlman, who wrote the crucial first draft for Guardians of the Galaxy, and Meg LeFauve, who broke new ground with her script for a little animated feature called Inside Out, were the main screenwriters tapped to bring Captain Marvel to the big screen. Directing team Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck, best known for their collaboration on Half Nelson, It’s Kind of a Funny Story, and Mississippi Grind, have a lot of experience exploring characters with big-time vulnerabilities, which may seem like an odd choice for a movie centring on someone who is ostensible, in the immortal words of David Bowie, “the babe with the power.” Though at their core, aren’t all superhero movies essentially about vulnerability? By this metric, Brie Larson is most certainly the woman to play this mysterious alien-hybrid-fighter-pilot-protagonist. Yes, it’s safe to say that we (admittedly) canonical philistines are pretty optimistic about Marvel’s first foray into femme-centred superhero adventures.
In fact, we have so much optimism that it’s carrying over and feeding our enthusiasm for Mary Poppins Returns, which releases just before the Christmas holiday and seemingly continues the current trend of dredging beloved vintage British children’s literature for movie fodder — see Christopher Robin, Goodbye, Christopher Robin, Peter Rabbit, even our beloved Paddington and Paddington 2, and now this — for a new generation that’s used to more uncanny visuals and marketing tie-ins. No, despite our best efforts, we simply can’t be mad at this:
It’s never going to get better than Dick Van Dyke as a dashing lamplighter. It just plain isn’t. That said, Lin-Manuel Miranda gets pretty close! Van Dyke will still have a cameo in this sequel-reboot (Seqboot? Requel?), but Julie Andrews won’t be anywhere near it…and that’s probably a good thing since Emily Blunt (or “fresh Poppins,” as we like to call her) has some very big spool-heel shoes to fill. After all, it takes a very special blend of sugar and medicine to take on the role of the most magical babysitter of all time. While we get just a tiny tease of singing, dancing, and refreshingly vintage-looking animated surreality, it’s safe to say there will be a lot more where that came from — why else would Miranda, to say nothing of director Rob Marshall (who won an Oscar for Chicago) be involved if Mary Poppins Returns wasn’t a movie musical? Recent related releases La La Land and The Greatest Showman boast soundtracks full of innocuous, pop-influenced numbers seemingly created for hopeful contestants to cover on American Idol, but we’re hoping for something a little more like 1964 original, with borderline-ridiculous lyrics by the Sherman Brothers. You know, something we can all half-ironically sing at karaoke in twenty-five years.