Tuesday, August 7, 2012

90's Comic: WildCATS Pretend Casting

I loved the 90s.  I loved grunge music, creator driven comic book companies, and SeaQuest DSV.  Not everyone has the balls to admit that last one.  Yesterday I pretended to cast the Gen13 movie, and following in that alternate reality where WildStorm was not bought out by DC and have somehow managed to have a similar success to the Marvel Movie Universe, I pretend to cast WildC.A.T.S: Covert Action Teams.  The name was a little silly.  Just like Gen13,  WildC.A.T.S a a Marvel analogue, in this case kind of filling the same role as the Avengers in their respective universes.

There is no way this movie would be made today if someone did not seriously try and get Peter Dinklage to play Lord Emp.  Emp is a little guy, sure, but he is also the biggest pimp on the planet.  That's the urban parlance for baddest mutha, in case you were uncertain.  He does not engage in illegal sex businesses, despite the costumes some of his co-workers prefer.  He has super strength, lifting about 5 tons under normal conditions, super endurance, heightened reflexes, nearly immortal, and the ruler of a race of aliens called the Kherubin, who our ancestors called angels, of course.  These days he runs a mega corp, has a secret team of super beings, and generally saves the universe as a hobby.

Then we have Zealot.  Zealot, like Emp, is a Kherubim.  In her case a member of an elite group of female warriors called the Coda.  Think Amazons by way of the Hand, I suppose.  They use katanas, their badassery, and cool judging gazes if Zealot is any indication.  Zealot is actually not one dimensional despite the costume.  She is a sound judge of character, true to her belief system, a mother, and in her own way an iconclast.  She's also a killing machine with no remorse for her actions.  I'm casting this movie a little older than some might think prudent, but the older cast has done well for Marvel and in some cases it would help the movie audience understand the differences in these characters persepctive.  Tricia Helfer would do great as Zealot.  She's tall, athletic, Amazonian, with some nuance underneath the Nordic good looks.  She is old enough that she is believable as a battle hardened veteran without looking worn out.  

Voodoo is the audiences POV character in a lot of ways.  She is Alice going down one wacky rabbit hole.  She starts off in the old comic as a stripper who happens to have "The Sight" allowing her to percieve things as they really are.  Circumstances force her to leave her life as a dancer and save the world.  She's from New Orleans, of mixed ethnic and species background, and gorgeous.  I'm thinking Rosario Dawson fits wonderfully, but I think she should be a little younger, to better get across the point that she is the new player in the game. Gabrielle Union is gorgeous and can act, but she is 39 and while she may look younger her attitude is still very mature.  Honestly there are a couple of different ways it could go. What makes it more difficult is that she is dark haired, blue eyed, and she has been depicted many different ways.  The only constants are the tattoos and the relative comic book hotness.  She's even part of DC's New 52 and apparently has changed to the point of barely recognizable.  In keeping with this, I am dream casting a couple of different ladies.

From left to right we have Tiffany Hines, probably best known for her role on Bones.  Rihanna the singer who was not terrible in Battleship.  Lastly Kristen Kreuk best known for Lana Lang on Smallville.

Spartan is a super soldier Android featuring a personality that could best be described as Captain America with Cyclops' stick shoved up his ass.  He's handsome, all American looking, confident and is supposed to look inspiring.  I think he should be relatively young, full of youthful vigor and physically impressive.  Jared Padalecki needs something to do aside from Supernatural.  Honestly, I could go with my man crush Jensen Ackles on this one too, but he doesn't quite have Jared's boyish charms.

Maul is this universe's equivalent of the Hulk. Brilliant, Nobel prize winning scientist who is afflicted with a superpower that turns him into an atavistic, mentally inferior giant.  Like the Avengers I imagine that most of the movie would feature the character in his human form only relying on his super strength when absolutely necessary.  He has no powers in his human form aside from his intellect, and in the series eventually begins to resent his Titanthrope form.  Alan Tudyk would brings a lot of weight, humor and humanity to the part elevating it from a mere brute to something worthwhile as more than just the strength quotient to the team.  It would also be a very different approach than that done with the Hulk in the movies thus far.

Of all the Wildstorm characters Warblade has has the least impact in my memory.  His origins were interconnected with the Cyberforce team, from Mark Silvestri and none of the cybernetic characters really jived with me.  Reno Bryce was an artist before being made into a cyborg, just with green hair.  Like, born with green hair.  Somehow he was surprised when it turned out he was half alien.  I'm suggesting Neil Grayston would be amazing in the role.  He is best known for the goof ball mad scientist nerd Fargo on Eureka but I think he would really do well in this role.  Imagine Warblade as a conflicted youth, whose power comes not from raw physical strength but the nanotech cybernetics in his body.  Underneath the steely exterior lies a sensitve boy whose parents were murdered and who has been manipulated or outright controlled his whole life.  He is only now finding his way on his own.

Grifter is the only male ever trained by the Coda, is full of secrets, a loner, and devoted to his partner and mentor Zealot.  He has the most secrets of everyone on the team aside from Lord Emp and the most baggage.  He's a former teammate of Lynch from Gen13 (in fact so were Emp and Zealot) and pretty much a hunted man.  He's a badass, a cold killer with a heart of gold but no illusions left to him.  He's been through the ringer a few times and unlike everyone else on the team has no super powers to keep him going, just normal human durability and incredible training.  He actually has a latent healing power similar to Wolverine's but it is not active in the first volume of the series.  Basically imagine Wolverine and Gambit had a love child and he trained with the League of Shadows.  I think Jamie Bamber (of Battlestar Galactica) would do the role justice, and has the physical presence to pull it off.  I'd like him to lose his accent for the role, but that is not a problem for him.  I am surprised at how much man meat is on display here today.

Void is probably the most difficult one to cast, even more than Voodoo.  In fact, Void is the character that would probably piss off the most feminists overall, even more than a stripper witch.  Void is practically the definition of the supposed "male gaze".  She's barely even a person any more.  She appears as a silver human female shape, with only her face appearing human.  She is one third of a cosmic entity trapped inside a human host, and the human part of her is slowly fading away.  Originally a Russian cosmonaut named Adrianna she was transformed during an EVA mission and fused with an Orb of Power.  This grants her massive powers of precognition and the ability to teleport pretty much anywhere.  Lord Emp had been kicking around as an amnesiac homeless man until she found him and helped him create his financial empire and find the members of WildC.A.Ts.  On one hand I feel like this character should be played by a woman with serious physical assets, like Jeri Ryan as Seven of Nine.  It could easlily go nearly pornographic if you go that route though.  Instead it should be a woman with some weight to her voice, an expressive face, someone that would look good in a CGI enhanced skin suit, but not look like a geek porno.  Since she is Russian the easy choice would be Mila Jovovich, and she certainly has no problem with genre films.  Instead, I think Selma Blair would do great.  I'd like her to try for the Russian accent, but her bearing and dark velvet voice convey intelligence and knowing well enough to carry the role.

There is almost no way this movie ever gets made, but one can hope.  DC keeps screwing the pooch on their big properties, maybe the only way for them to get a film franchise going is to look at some of their acquired properties like those from the Wildstorm universe.

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