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I’m not the biggest comic book movie fan, but I must admit to being impressed by the degree to which the Marvel folks have managed to not just make an amazingly consistent series of entertaining, profitable movies featuring such iconic characters as Iron Man, Captain American, Thor, Hulk, Black Panther, etc… Even though in the end many of them get pretty silly, the movies tend to be well directed and acted, with as strong an emphasis on character as one can expect in the genre. And, unlike most of the DC movies, they tend not to be dour, which is a huge advantage.

This weekend, the Marvel ecosystem gets a new character, its first real female superhero, in Captain Marvel. While I must admit that the first half hour had me completely confused - maybe I’m just not familiar enough with the comic book source material - Captain Marvel actually manages to be a diverting piece of fantasy mixed with science fiction.

Most of this is due to a terrific, tongue-in-cheek performance in the title role by Brie Larson, who manages to simultaneously take her character seriously while sort of luxuriating in the silliness of it all. Most of all, it is because she seems to be having so much fun … she is the very model of the ultimately empowered woman, and she’s enjoying every minute of it.

Supporting her as Nick Fury - a part he has played in a bunch of other Marvel movies - is Samuel L. Jackson, with the difference being that he’s been digitally upgraded to look like he’s in his thirties; if this works out, Jackson may get to have his career all over again. He’s clearly enjoying himself, playing a less hardened and cynical version of Fury.

It is all good fun, and it sets up Captain Marvel’s appearance in the upcoming Avengers: End Game, where it would appear that she’s going to be a game-changer for the franchise. If I were Thanos (the big bad guy in End Game), I might be a little concerned…



It was sad to read this morning that Tom Seaver, 74, one of the best pitchers ever in baseball and a major part of New York Mets history, has been diagnosed with advanced dementia.

His family released the following statement: “Tom will continue to work in his beloved vineyard at his California home, but has chosen to completely retire from public life … The family is deeply appreciative of those who have supported Tom throughout his career, on and off the field, and who do so now by honoring his request for privacy.”

Seaver will not attend this summer’s 50th anniversary of the Mets team that won the 1969 World Series. But he will be in everybody’s hearts.



That’s it for this week. Have a great weekend, and I’ll see you Monday.

Sláinte!!
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