Logan: finally, after 17 years

LoganThe number 17 has been a significant number in my life. I was born on the 17th, as was my husband. He asked me to be his girlfriend on his birthday, which made our dating anniversary the 17th. My line number upon becoming a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. is 17. Our now wedding anniversary is August 17th, but that was done intentionally. My son was due March 25th, we thought “wouldn’t it be great if he was born on the 17th?”, but he wasn’t. He was born on the 14th…March 14th…..3/14…..3 + 14=17!!!!!! So I guess it was fate that I had to go through 17 years of waiting, until I was finally able to see a worthy Wolverine film. Don’t get me wrong he has been in some awesome X-Men films, but the solo Wolverine movies have been less than stellar. Thursday, we finally saw what all the hype was all about, and it was well deserved hype because Logan was spectacular.

I think this is the first time we’ve seen a movie within a week of its release since become parents. We were debating between seeing “Logan” or “Get Out”, both movies have been all the rage on social media, so I was faced with a choice…. “Do I please my inner nerd or my inner militant pro-black self?” I chose my inner nerd, as I always do when it comes to seeing movies in theaters. I prefer to see superhero, action, sci-fi movies in theaters. I’ll catch anything else on Netflix, Redbox, or maybe still the movies if another opportunity presents itself. It might be wrong but, sorry…not sorry.

The movie opened up and showed you what it was going to be all about. Wolverine’s limo was being stolen, while he was in it. He began to brutal beat the foolish cholos down in true Wolverine fashion. There was no sparing of blood and guts. It was completely raw and animalistic. You also saw that he obviously not his normal self, he had trouble retracting his claws and he was taking the beating worse than usual, but even still he was able to easily beat them until the survivors fled for their lives. The raw, goriness was what many Wolverine depictions in the past were lacking. I thought they were going to do it with “The Wolverine”, I never even saw that movie after I read so many abysmal reviews. I know we have the success of  “Deadpool”to thank for the “R” rating. For what ever reason, I’m glad we finally got what we were asking for.

For all the energy and ferocity Logan was lacking in his old age, we got it from Laura. I mean she was a relentless BEAST. Even X-24 couldn’t handle her. I believe it came from a combination of her upbringing as a weapon and the genetics she inherited from Wolverine. The other children were not like her. They fought when attacked and in order to save their lives, as did she, but it wasn’t the same. We barely got to see their powers. Although I did catch that Rictor, the supposed leader, had Magneto’s power.  I think her energy will replace Wolverine’s in future films if that is the intention; I will however still miss Wolverine and Hugh Jackman. For one, Wolverine is the most popular X-men, and one of the most popular superheroes period. Also, 17 years of my 28 of life have been with Jackman as Wolverine. But I think that would be another reason not to recast him for a while.

This was an extremely emotional movie. You had so many circumstances involved here. Its the last film with Jackman as Wolverine, most of the beloved X-man characters are dead, the patriarchal Professor X is but a fraction of his normal self, children are being bred, experimented on, and now exterminated, and then of course the whole “daddy issues” theme between  Laura and Logan. One aspect of the movie that I did expect to hit close to home was Charles Xavier and his seizures. I heard that he had a seizure that killed all the X-men, but I didn’t know his condition would be such a big part of the film. You see, my husband has a seizure disorder and has since he was a child. There is no cure or treatment that has seemed to help with it. So seeing Wolverine caring for the ailing Professor, forcing him to take medication, stabbing him with the anticonvulsant, and having that medicine make him a lesser version of himself struck a nerve. My husband and I will forever have the joke now of Charles sticking his tongue out when Logan demands to see that he’s taken his medicine. Although it was extremely emotional to watch, that tear jerking effect is how you know its a good movie.

“Logan” was not your average superhero movie. There was not a Earth threatening villain, and multiple X-men showing off their powers. It was personal. I only wish we had gotten this from every Wolverine film in the past. But I guess that had to experiment to get it just right so it could end with a “bang”, or in this case a “slash”. Hopefully moving forward they can make sure to bring this into every X-men film in the future.

 

Are Orcs the Blacks of Middle Earth?

I have mentioned the influence of my race a few times. It goes without saying as I am discussing various aspects of natural hair care. In the world of geekery I am interested in African American Sci-Fi and Fantasy characters. Because African Americans have been under represented in vaorcsrious forms of entertainment, since I was a child I find myself yearning for characters that “look like me”.  So my first time watching a “Lord of the Rings” film I found myself asking “where are the black people?”

I’ve read “The Hobbit” and the “Lord of the Rings” books. And although descriptions of characters are given their race, as far as color, is not. But I believe European characteristics are the “default” of what people imagine in their minds if it is not specified. Much like the outrage of Hermione being cast as black in “The Cursed Child” to which author JK Rowling responded on twitter saying “Canon: brown eyes, frizzy hair and very clever. White skin was never specified. Rowling loves black Hermione”. The film makers who bring the movie to life create their own interpretation of the world the writers created. So in the Middle Earth created by Peter Jackson, the only people with dark complexion were the Orcs/Goblins.

In the Middle Earth of “The Hobbit” and “Lord of the Rings” there are a few races which include Elves, Men, Dwarfs, and Orcs/Goblins. I’m not even sure if I sure include Wizards as a race, since there a few of them one serve as guardians. Technically other than “Man” the other races of Middle Earth aren’t “men” (if you get what I’m trying to say) but nonetheless they were chosen to be cast as Whites in the films. Then you have the Orcs. Their skin color varies greatly in the films. Some appear the palest of  white like Azog the Defiler.  While others are yellow, pinkish, red, brown, and black. Some of their hair is matted in a way that reminds me of dread locks, I’m thinking primarily of Lurtz, the Uruk-Hai scout leader. The Orcs appearance is the most distorted of all the Middle Earth creatures. I’d imagine that is to reflect what these creatures have endured (sound familiar).

Saruman describes the orcs as “elves taken by the dark powers, tortured, and mutilated. A ruined and terrible form of life” he goes on to say “Now, perfected, my fighting Uruk-Hai.” These creatures are typically shown controlled and following orders of either Sauron or Saruman. Saruman “the white”, marks his soldiers with his white hand insignia. They are used for their physical strength, and depicted as unintelligent, savage creatures. They will turn against each other if it suites the individuals needs and follow orders of their leader with little question. They are largely regarded as villains in these works, although have little to gain from their “sides” victory other than remaining in servitude. Obviously, works in particular locations and time settings would not accurately have blacks, but why not if it is fantasy? Why could there not have been black Elves, Men, Dwarfs, or Wizards? Orcs are the only character that seemed to physically fit the bill. Then when I looked closer, I thought “maybe it wasn’t coincidence?” It is believed that Tolkein wrote these books to reflect what he saw during World War I. Could have also been showing his thoughts of the treatment of blacks during that time and over the course of history?

My intention is not to race bate or offend. I am merely stating my observations.  I have read “The Hobbit” and “Lord of the Rings” as well as seen the films, although I have not read “The Silmarillion” (future gift idea). These stories may close some gaps and give me more answers proving or disproving my hypothesis. Have anyone else had similar theories?

Healthy Nappy Nerdy Mommy: Year 2016 in Review

All over social media there have been post and memes about how horrible 2016 has been. As I prepare for a new year of bettering myself, I thought it would be beneficial to focus on the positivity of 2016. New Year’s Eve is the perfect opportunity to fill in gaps and review some of the HEALTHY.NERDY.NAPPY.MOMMY awesomeness.

January

Being that this is pretty much National Diet Month,  I was busy trying different products and recipes to accumulate myself to my new lifestyle. I did a clean eating and yoga challenge, and we started officially trying to potty train my 18 month old son. Now I know it was too early, and we didn’t stick to it well. But it gave me a good chance to get some bare bottom photos as blackmail when he gets older.

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Yoga Challenge

February

For Valentine’s Day my husband and I enjoyed a movie date to see “Deadpool”. It was a breath of fresh air to see this rated “R”, as a true “Deadpool” movie would have to be. We also enjoyed playing some “Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4”. My son transitioned from stay at home dad care, to daycare. It was hard on us all, some of this I later shared in “Peez, Ana” . But it was also for the best.

March

March opened with Spirit Week at my school, and as the Student Council adviser I had to go all out with a X-men’s Storm costume. It wasn’t the best (couldn’t find the right wig), but good enough for the crowd I was serving. My students were calling me “Thunder Girl”, they didn’t even know my character’s name. It was my son’s 2nd birthday on the 14th so we planned a “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs” party, complete with meatball sub buffet. As he was a big boy now he also got a small “Jake the Pirate” party with cupcakes and juice at daycare. For the 3rd birthday we just might leave it at treats at daycare and family dinner.

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“Thundergirl” aka “Storm”

April

This month was the grand debut of HEALTHY.NAPPY.NERDY.MOMMY! During Spring Break we did indoor camping in our little apartment living room. Complete with a fort, s’mores, kababs, and baked beans.It was also my husband’s birthday which and our dating anniversary that marked 9 wonderful years being together. We celebrated with a family party at his cousin’s, complete with Baskin Robin ice cream cake, a game stop gift card, his favorite Snickers &  Bacon- Cheddar gourmet popcorn, and a gamer screen t-shirt. His celebrations tend to be more family inclusive while mine are typically dates with just the 2 of us giving me a mommy break.

May

We celebrated Mother’s Day with yet another movie date highlighted in (Marvel)ous Mother’s Day. I cannot express how much I enjoyed “Captain America: Civil War”. This month I officially became a “Flexi-Vegan” and I was experimenting with vegan and allergen free recipes.

June

This is one of my favorite months because it marks the end of the school year and time for a short break. I always teach summer school, but in June I get a couple weeks off before I have to crack back at it. We enjoyed a small beach trip with my parents. It was also the month a tried my first Cross Fit class, and started watching the original “Dragon Ball” series for the first time.

cross-fit

July

The biggest thing that happened in July was the introduction of Pokemon Go. I was so excited about this game, but that excitement quickly fizzled and I don’t even have the app downloaded on my phone anymore, but they were good times while they lasted. I’m interested to see what the craze will be this year. July was capped by seeing Kakashi’s face in the latest episode of “Naturo: Shippuden”

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My first Eevee evolution

August

I don’t know which is a bigger deal my wedding anniversary or Otakon. I don’t think my husband would even be mad at it. I talked about our excitement for Otakon in 6 Anticipated Events for a Nerdy Mom and fully anticipated doing a full post on it, but that never happened. So this is your mini overview of it. It was bitter sweet, as this was the last year it would be in Baltimore, MD. But I am excited for the new location. Otakon 2017 WILL have a post, maybe even an entire page dedicated to its greatness. In preparation for this trip and the start of a new school year, I got crochets for the first time. Its a great protective style, and I’ll never set for 10 hours getting individual sengalese twist or box braids on this thick head of hair again. Oh, yeah my son came back from staying with my parents while we were at Otakon potty trained! He still needed the pull up for night and doesn’t poop until then.

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My seneglese twist crochets and excited for Otakon grin!

September

I entertained the ideas of starting a garden. I starting some romaine, but I didn’t follow through. For this spring though, I plan on starting both an indoor and patio garden for herbs, fruits, and veggies. Look forward to pictures, how to’s, and testimonials in the near future. I also developed an addiction to the online make up line Colourpop. I’d never been a make up girl before, but I found myself needing something to step it up a notch. Lipstick for me is the easy answer (I love Matte). Just the lipstick, some eyeliner, mascara, and maybe BB cream and I’m good to go. From my first purchase in August to now, all of my profile pictures feature me in one of their shades.

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Some romaine lettuce sprouting up.

October

In the last week of October I went on my first cruise! I had so much fun and relaxed with friends and family. I became known as “the girl that ate all the weird food” because at dinner I always tried the most exotic thing on the menu. Why would I pay all that money for something I can eat any day? We enjoyed the dinners and events on the ship as well as the beach and sights of Nassau, Bahamas. I might save big for a Disney cruise in the future, I’ve heard, while expensive, they are the best. Disney should do a line dedicated to Marvel or Star Wars since they are taking over everything. Universal Studios could take on a Harry Potter cruise as well.

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Smoked duck with oranges and Thai rice noodle salad

November

In November my son woke up early in the morning vomiting several times within two weeks of each other. I took him to the doctor the second time, and they said it was probably to different viruses. After leaving the doctor I started thinking he might have food allergies like me. Both times he never had a fever or acted sick, it was just vomit or diarrhea. It could be allergies or an intolerance at the least. I took him off dairy for a week, but didn’t really notice a change. After he returned to his normal diet he didn’t have anymore stomach issues, so maybe it was just the stomach bug like the doctor said. We of course enjoyed Thanksgiving with family. I took an allergy pill, ate what I wanted, and hoped I wouldn’t end up in the ER with anaphylaxis.

December

The holidays are busy for everyone. We began this month by putting up our Marvel Christmas tree. I’d seen some superhero, Harry Potter, and Star War variations. Ours was simple we just added some superhero masks we had from our wedding photo booth along with our normal red and gold decorations. My birthday was the 17th. We had a quiet, childless, evening at home watching some Luke Cage on Netflix, with carry out sushi, and wine. I found out two days after my birthday that I won “Teacher of the Year” at my school. I had a great Christmas as it was the first our son was really excited and understood what was going on.  We later celebrated my birthday  and the life of Carrie Fisher by finally watching “Star Wars: Rogue One” and I realized first hand that The Force is with Me. My husband and I’s catch phrase has become “the rebellion was built on Hope.”

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Our (Marvel)ous Christmas Tree

I hope you’ve enjoyed my year in a glimpse. I look forward to sharing more with you in 2017, Happy New Year’s to you and yours.

(Marvel)ous Mother’s Day

Captain America: Civil War

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The first event listed in 6 Anticipated Events for a Nerdy Mom was seeing “Captain America: Civil War”, and now I can scratch that off my list. For Mother’s Day some ask for flowers, others jewelry or clothes, but I’ve known for quite some time that all I wanted for Mother’s Day was to see “Captain America: Civil War”. Our grandparents watched our son and we got to enjoy one of our favorite dates; going out to see a superhero movie. I was very excited about this movie. To me it is the Marvel version of Batman vs Superman, so naturally in my opinion it was bound to be ten times better. As far as I’m concerned it was. I probably shouldn’t call this a review. Reviews are supposed to be unbiased, this is very biased. I’ll call it my opinion and views on the movie rather, than a review. SPOILER WARNING: after this point significant details about the movie may be revealed.

Synopsis

The movie takes place a year after the events of “Avengers: Age of Ultron” and people want the Avengers to take responsibility for the destruction they caused and make better decisions. There are those that feel guilty enough about the innocent lives lost that they are willing to sign a document called the “Sokovia Accords”, created by the United Nations, to govern over the Avengers. In the wake of the signing of the Sokovia Accords it seems the Winter Soldier attacked the United Nations summit, killing the King of Wakanda. His attack caused people to believe even stronger that people with super abilities need to be put “in check”, but Captain America doesn’t buy it. He remains true to his decision, that the Avengers should make their own decisions and tries to help clear his friends name. It turns out the whole attack and scheme was of Zemo, a soldier from Sokovia, who wanted to get revenge on the Avengers for killing is family, by tearing them apart from the inside.

My Initial thoughts

On one side you have Iron Man and those that believe the Sokovia Accords are the best option for The Avengers. On the other side Captain America and the others that believe the Avengers should use their own judgement in deciding their actions. This is a major argument in any superhero series. It is pretty much what Batman vs Superman stemmed from except on a smaller, less awesome level. See Movie Review: Batman vs Superman. At first I didn’t know which team I would side with, but very shortly into the movie I began rooting for team Captain America. It is as the Cap said “What if they send us somewhere we shouldn’t be or don’t sent us somewhere we need to go.” Governments can’t be trusted with these types of things. The Sokovia Accords would turn the Avengers into some kind of team of henchmen. I had also been wondering about the absence of the Hulk and Thor. A little into the movie I understood why they couldn’t be in the movie. If the Hulk and Thor were to participate they would probably have been on team Captain America and with both of them on that team there would’ve been no fight. The God Thor would not have submitted to being ruled by mere mortals. And the Hulk would not allow the government to make him turn his beast “on and off” at their will. He didn’t even want to use it in the first place in the past “Avengers: Age of Ultron”. At first I wondered how it is a Captain America movie and not another Avengers movie. But it was not the Avengers being the Avengers. There was not world ending catastrophic event for the Avengers to assemble. This was Captain America trying to save his friend and the conflicts that arose from it.

Character Spotlights

There were several brilliant aspects of the movie in my opinion. The first thing that caught my eye was the budding romantic relationship between the Scarlet Witch and Vision. He is keeping her on “lock down” by Iron Man’s orders, but he is also trying to plant some seeds. He starts be attempting to cook for her then it does turn into a deeper conversation about their thoughts on the Sokovia Accords. And its like most of the Avenger’s members, they have different view points but still respect one another and want to avoid this major conflict that is about the occur.

The friendship between Iron Man and Captain America is obviously on the rocks, its the entire basis of the movie, but another interesting relationship dynamic comes from the Caps loyalty to Buckey, and that’s the relationship with Falcon. Its like Buckey is the friend from back home who never quite got it together, but they grew up and are like brothers and Falcon is the frat brother he met and college they are close now because they’ve experienced and helped each other so much to get where they are now. Falcon is completely loyal to Captain America, even though he knows he will go down with him. I’m not entirely sure if Falcon would’ve opposed the new laws if Captain America wasn’t. Now with Buckey all Captain America thinks about, its getting in the way of he and Falcon’s “bromance”. He even tells Buckey that he hates him, but they both come together in congratulatory looks when he kisses, Sharon Carter, Peggy Carter’s niece.

The best characters in the movie seemed to be the newer additions, including Black Panther, Spiderman, and Ant Man. It seemed like each team needed a bug. Spiderman and Ant Man provided some much needed comic relief and fun. Although, some would say that Spider-man’s role was unnecessary, his action scenes were some of the best and his youthful humor was much welcomed and has been the best Spider-Man I’ve seen on screen yet. Black Panther was EVERYTHING! In the movie he was seeking revenge for the death of his father, the king of Wakanda. He was strong and feline at the same time. I got chills every time he stuck a landing. As my husband said “he’s a cat, but not feminine like Catwoman.” They nailed the Black Panther. I am so glad to see another superhero of color represented. This may be a way to get more X-men integrated in the Avengers as they are in the comics. They have Scarlet Witch and had quicksilver, this could be a way to bring in Storm and then Wolverine. Fox and Disney need to get over themselves and let these movies intertwine as they did in the comics a lot. The whole Sovokia Accords tie right in the sides involved in mutant registration. But back to my man point Black Panther is OP. He has it all; wisdom, money, strength, power, I mean he’s a freaking King with super powers. He was the “REAL” hero of the movie and ended the cycle of revenge, by not killing Zemo once he found out he was responsible for his father’s death, not Buckey.

Possible Criticisms

There were probably all kinds of inaccuracies within the movie that some fanboys/girls hate. After watching Batman vs Superman I researched different things ( because I have not read a lot of comics) and began critiquing and comparing the inaccuracies. This movie itself was so good in my opinion that I don’t even want to know what they got wrong. I don’t want to ruin this good feeling I have about it. There are also those that are probably on the completely opposite side of me, thinking that Iron Man is right and the Avengers need a governing body. At the end of the movie, though, you see that Iron Man is questioning this and War Machine tries the reassure him that it was the wrong decision. If there was one flaw in the movie, I’d say that I expected more from Vision. His powers seemed like they should have completely overwhelmed anybody on the other side. The only person they had with that kind of power was Scarlet Witch and at this point she’s still a little untrained, but you could tell he already had a soft spot for her. Nobody was fight to their full potential, because this was a fight among friends, not trying to kill each other, but trying to get to a point when they can come together again. Some might say the movie was too long, but I wasn’t at any point waiting for it to be over. Another thing that really bothered me, was that I wanted Blank Panther to step into the Iron Man/Captain America fight and shed the same wisdom he had gained with them and ended the war. But it is a Civil War, so no way it could be ended this soon. They will probably continue it into other MCU movies, resolving it to protect the world from what ever catastrophic, world ending adversary they will meet up with in the 3rd Avengers installment.

I am completely biased. I love everything Marvel. It was a great movie, better than “Avengers: Age of Ultron” in my opinion and better than the rival “Batman vs Superman. Thank you, hubby, for my Marvelous Mother’s Day gift. Now the countdown to “X-Men: Apocalypse”

Movie Review: Batman vs Superman

26125750001_372e2a06fa_oFirst, I will go ahead and say that I know I am late with a post on Batman vs Superman being that its been out for going on 2 weeks. I just started my blog and had tons of ideas swirling around in my mind and it didn’t come to me until today to do this. I spoke about my views on the movie a little in one of my earlier post, but now I will go into detail.

The movie seems to take place after the events of “Man of Steel”. Some people worship and are thankful for Superman, while others believe he is a false god and should take responsibility for the destruction he causes. This is an age old issue within the world of a superheroes. I really see it as an allegory of how people think of the military, particularly the United States military in other countries and territories.  Here’s the big bad USA coming to save the day, and in their eyes we could be cause more destruction than aid we’ve given. But we don’t stop them because we need them to save our asses in the event that a terrorist attack occurs or some other catastrophic upset to our society. Same thing in the movie. Batman was among those that thought Superman was bad news. The main villain is Lex Luther who purposely put them against one another, with the intention for them to kill each other. Instead they end up coming together and saving the day.

Lets do a compliment sandwich; start with the positive, negatives in the middle ,and end with something mean again. Hands down the best things about the movie where the visuals and special effects. I always try to see sci-fi/fantasy movies in IMAX  3-D if its an option. So it was a fun, entertaining experience with that respect. I like the daydream scene, all the foreshadowing of a Darkseid villain in later movies, and the appearance of The Flash. This scene did bring me back to the scene in Avengers: Age of Ultron, when Iron Man see’s the Ultron controlled world, sorry I couldn’t help the comparison. There was also I sneak peak into the other heroes such as Cyborg and Aquaman. My favorite part of the movie was Wonder Woman she was OP (over powered). Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman was exotic, sultry, intelligent, and powerful. Exactly what an Amazonian warrior should be, I can’t wait for her movie in 2017.

Now lets get to the inside of the sandwich. What didn’t I like about the movie? I did not like Lex Luther. When I first saw the trailers for the movie I thought he was the Riddler. This is not the Lex Luther I know. Upon further research I found that Lex Luthor did at one point have long red hair and a larger than life personality. So it was their choice to use this depiction of Luther in the movie. Maybe after his prison stint now that they’ve shown him bald he will be the familiar Lex Luther character. That was another thing that confused me a bit. The movie seemed to have a young Lex Luther and Superman, but yet an older Batman. Maybe its may ignorance of the DC world, so somebody please clear that up for me is this accurate to the DC Universe timeline.  Once again, I’m a Marvel, specifically X-men junky. I’m just trying to be open minded and embrace this DC universe. From the beginning I have not liked the way it seems they are jumping into a Justice League movie. It seems like they’re hanging on the coat tails of Marvel. You have Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, and Doomsday all wrapped up in the same movie. When I saw Doomsday jump out in the trailers, I was like “Are you serious?!”, “They’re taking it here already!”  From what I know the creation of Doomsday was incorrect as well. Doomsday is a baby that was continuously tortured, killed, and brought back to life. Maybe his appearance in the movie was one of the reincarnations, or they just concocted some reason to add him in the mix. The movie was also very slow. I understand building backstory, I really do, but there had to have had it that way. The main action occurred so late in the movie and it was lack-luster. Batman was pretty much hiding the whole time and pretty much said I cannot even play along with these people. He did not play his normal super detective solve the mystery self. He did snap back until Lois Lane told him Superman’s mother’s name is Martha too. OMG, we can be friends. The whole movie he was being played by Luther and in the end Superman saved the day. God I hate that! I really do not like Superman.  He has super strength, speed, lazer vision, x-ray vison, the list goes on and on. To me he’s boring and lame.

Although I mentioned disdain over DC seemingly are rushing to get to a Justice League movie. The end with Batman saying he will find them, left me with pleasant thoughts of all the stories not told yet. So yes, there were some issues in my opinion but overall it was still a good, not great, superhero movie. It did somewhat intrigue me enough to do more research and try to give DC heroes a fare shot, although I still doubt they can pull me from the Marvel side. Some may argue “Why choose?” and those that do know the ends and outs of DC can probably post a reasonable rebuttal to all of my critiques. But it is what it is. And I like what I like.