On this week’s episode, the Substandard reflects on the death of Stan Lee and the greatness of The Good Place. JVL has an origin story—about Fanta. Vic hates philosophy. And Sonny Bunch returns!

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Stan Lee, RIP

 

News has just reported that Stan Lee, comic book creator and favorite Marvel cameo has passed on at 95. He’s had health problems in the last few years, enough so he’s cancelled Convention appearances. He’s had quite a footprint in the entertainment industry at his passing. Thanks for the stories, Stan. Excelsior! More

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RIP Stan Lee — Comic Great and Cameo Favorite

 
Stan Lee
Photo by shutterstock.com

As I noted in an earlier post, Stan Lee, Marvel giant, co-creator of many of its titles and constant cameo in many of the Marvel Cinematic Universe films has passed away today at the age of ninety-five. He and Jack Kirby began Marvel Comics in 1961 with its first title, The Fantastic Four, and went on to create some of the most iconic characters in the genre: Spider-Man, the Hulk, and the X-Men as well as many others: Doctor Strange, Black Panther, and collaborated in the creation of Iron Man, Thor, and Ant-Man.

Stan Lee was born Stanley Martin Lieber in Manhattan, New York City. Even in his youth he wrote and began his comic career with Timely Comics which would later evolve to Marvel. Stan Lee served in the military during World War II in the US Army where his talents were eventually applied to training films and materials.

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Kevin Williamson of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America applaud Texas Rep.Elect Dan Crenshaw for forgiving Saturday Night Live’s mocking of his war injury and using the opportunity to explain how all of us can best honor veterans. They also shudder as more Hillary Clinton acolytes insist she is planning to run for president in 2020 and will once again try to reinvent herself. And they discuss the avalanche of Democrats planning to run for the White House in 2020, including many obscure figures who have virtually no chance of winning the nomination.

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Star Trek Next Generation: Errors and Flops

 

Creators of Star Trek: The Next Generation had an opportunity to give us a high quality, intelligent series, superior in every point to the original. Sometimes, especially in later seasons, it delivered. But with outlandish costumes, tedious dialogue, corny plots, cheesy effects, and mediocre actors, it was just another offering to loyal sci-fi fans. Here is a […]

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On this week’s return episode, the Substandard takes on Bohemian Rhapsody. Special guest Mike Warren fact-checks and gives us a Queen ranking. JVL gets into queer theory and Vic recounts his New York City bar crawl. Plus a special review and trenchant analysis of Election 2018!

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Small Screen Reviews: The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina

 
With special guest star: The Lord of Lies!

One well that TV execs like to go to frequently is the “gritty reboot.” They’ve dipped into that well so much in the past decades it’s running dry, but until they get nothing from it, they’re going to keep lowering the bucket to get all they can. In this case, we take an Archie Comics title, Sabrina the Teenaged Witch, which given from its publisher it would be noted this title would typically be lighthearted fun much like most incarnations of it on television of which are a surprising amount. A couple of cartoons and a live-action show that involve wacky adventures of a talented half-witch half-normal girl raised by kooky witch aunts. Netflix takes this and, building off The CW’s Riverdale (the gritty Archie and Friends reboot) and gives us The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina.

The background of the show actually takes a lot of material from the original source material. Some of the side characterizations are very similar to the comics. Sabrina’s parentage is explained and it’s a major factor of the original material and this show. Much of the background material remains true to source. It just adds a very large dose of Satan in the mix. I’m not even kidding about that last part. Not even a smidgeon. It’s the major conflict of the show.

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America wince at many of the final polls showing Democrats with the momentum in several key races. They also wonder why Republicans have not spent most of their time and money discussing the strength of the economy instead of more polarizing issues like the caravan. And they unload on Saturday Night Live comedian Pete Davidson for mocking Texas GOP congressional candidate Dan Crenshaw for wearing an eye patch and saying, “I’m sorry. I know he lost his eye in war or whatever.”

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Which Party Would Your Robin Hood Join: The Tea or Communist Party?

 

The Guiness Book of World Records says Sherlock Holmes is the fictional character who has been portrayed more than any other. But Robin Hood surely must have been in the running. He’s been a figure in literature for hundreds of years (perhaps first written about in a poem entitled Piers Plowman from the 1370’s). His […]

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A Video Game Commercial?

 

This is, of all things, a promotional video for a video game called League of Legends. By some measures, it’s the most popular video game in the world. More

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A million depressing things

 

Is this the saddest TV show ever? I was a fan of James Roday and Psych, so when I saw he was on a new show I thought I’d check it out. I didn’t even know what A Million Little Things was about; I just put it on the recording schedule. It turns out to be […]

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On today’s Daily Standard podcast, associate editor Ethan Epstein and deputy online editor Jim Swift join host Charlie Sykes to talk about the upcoming midterm elections, the Candace Owens / Tomi Lahren Twitter war over Kanye West, and whether or not President Trump is making Paul Ryan into a scapegoat should Republicans lose the House.

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America are happy to see new reports showing the highest wage growth in a decade and the highest consumer confidence since 2000. They also groan as dismal GOP prospects in major governors’ races could leave Democrats leading 12 of the 13 most populous states after the midterm elections. And they do a terrible job of faking their shocked faces as Kanye West says he was used politically and is now “distancing himself from politics.”

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Of All That Is Seen And Unseen

 

If you grew up Catholic during the 1970s and 1980s, you will recognize this:

We believe in One God,
The Father Almighty.
Maker of Heaven and earth.
Of all that is seen and unseen.

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Boo! Sorry, did that scare you? Hopefully not. Because if it did, you might not be able to handle this special Halloween episode of the Young Americans. Jack and the gang discuss their most Millennial fears, their favorite horror movies, and whether horror can be respected as a genre or not. And if this episode scares you too much, please make use of the services of our first-ever sponsor: Calm.com, an all-purpose relaxation website and app.

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The Latest Doctor Who Episode Seriously Sucked

 

I don’t think “sucked” quite does it justice. Anyway, spoilers ahead, because I need to share my frustrations. More

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Daredevil 3 Is Magnificent

 

It might be the best crime/superhero drama since The Dark Knight. It’s standard practice in sequels and in second and third seasons to resort to gimmicks like extra blood or adding a bunch of F-words or more sex. Instead, the makers of Daredevil resorted to dialing back on the sex, slit throats, and S-words and instead telling […]

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On this latest episode, the Substandard discusses Halloween and the blockbuster horror genre. JVL goes on a babymoon with his … best friend? Sonny investigates a strange-looking swing set at a playground. And Vic enjoys the symphony—while watching The Empire Strikes Back. Plus JVL’s decibel war continues and a horror ranking!

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