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  1. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by SiegePerilous02 View Post
    Is the show a serious take for adults? I haven't watched it, but I heard it's pretty campy. Many of the people I worked with started talking about the show when they saw the ads for the movie, and they didn't give the impression it was a serious show.

    It doesn't have to be strictly for children, but these characters were primarily designed with children and families in mind. People clinging to them well into adulthood and expecting them to age along with them and die isn't necessarily the best thing for the characters. It speaks more about the fan's inability to let go more than anything else. Batman was already over 5 decades old when I first "met" him in 1992, and it was all fresh and new to me at the time. The Batman vs. Joker stuff is played out to me now, but that's not Batman's problem, it's mine. The kids meeting Billy, Freddy and Mary at the cinema next week will have something brand new to them even though the characters have been around since the 1940s. If we get sick of eternally teenage Billy, the best course of action is to move on and not expect the character to change when he's timeless and not broken to begin with.
    I don't know if the show could be described as "campy", at least in the same way that the 1960s "Batman" show was. Certainly, the show was not campy in the way that the cartoon version, which came after, was. There weren't any "super-villains", and Captain Marvel only came around in order to save the day. What I personally liked about the show was the idea that the protagonist commune with his "Elders", who tested Billy into actually solving the problem, with help from his Mentor, before he even felt the need to become "empowered". Then again, growing up without a dad for most of my childhood, I kind of empathized with the idea of these "larger-than-life" figures giving sound advice to the protagonist (though, even back then, I thought it was cheesy for the actor Michael Grey to speaking to cartoon figures in a cave...lol).

    But, I've more or less stated all that is relevant to the subject. Though done, I would love to continue to read other people's thoughts on this subject. And, hopefully, whatever DC has in mind for the latest iteration of SHAZAM! will be both appreciated and expanded upon, especially if the movie does well in theaters.

  2. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by dswynne View Post
    Then again, growing up without a dad for most of my childhood, I kind of empathized with the idea of these "larger-than-life" figures giving sound advice to the protagonist (though, even back then, I thought it was cheesy for the actor Michael Grey to speaking to cartoon figures in a cave...lol).
    It was the 1970s; it could easily be interpreted as Billy going on a trip with acid or weed.

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  3. #63
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    By the time the Saturday morning live action show came on the air, I was in my teens. I had already become a Captain Marvel fan and was reading the comic books. I know other people were critical of the light direction that Julius Schwartz took with the SHAZAM! comics, but I welcomed it. At that time, there was this relevant trend and the comics were very serious about everything--what with stories about drug pushers and environmental pollution. I wanted something that was an escape from all that and SHAZAM! was clearly aimed at little kids--but could be enjoyed by bigger kids, too.

    To me the live action SHAZAM! was a kids' show. It was pretty clear on that and the kind of kids' show that you could only get in the 1970s when every Saturday morning show had to teach important moral lessons and there couldn't be any violence. Yet the show seemed to be trying to do the Search for America approach that had been taken by Green Lantern-Green Arrow a few years earlier--and itself was inspired by EASY RIDER. It seemed strange to me that they picked the Big Red Cheese for this format.

    Why not do a cartoon? Of all the super-heroes, Captain Marvel was perfect for animation. Why such a serious approach? Cap was supposed to be fun. My feeling was that the Filmation people wanted to do this live action moral lesson adventure--maybe because they were trying to get away from costly animation and maybe because they needed to satisfy the strict ethics codes of the day--and SHAZAM! just happened to become available to be put in that slot.

    And I did like the show for what it was, even if it played fast and loose with the Captain Marvel concept. It probably helped to save the SHAZAM! comic book for a couple more years. E. Nelson Bridwell and Kurt Schaffenberger did a nice job of adapting the show to the comics, without losing the heart of the World's Mightiest Mortal.
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  4. #64
    Mighty Member Adekis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ascended View Post
    I liked the idea that he was the "spirit" of nazi-ism, the same way Uncle Sam is the spirit of America. Makes for an easy explanation for where he came from, why he's still the same age, etc.
    Hrm. What if the Elemental Spirit of Nazism gifted an angry white nationalist in his 20s with the power of Captain Nazi in a perverted inverse of Billy's own origin? I'd be onboard with that.

    I think that neo-Nazis are a big enough problem in real life, and an overlooked enough problem, that tying Captain Nazi more into the current moment than to the past is not only permissible, but almost a moral obligation. Not to really make a difference in the world, I'm not that naive, just to, you know, raise awareness of the problem of neo-Nazis and their presence in reality.

    A Black Label Captain Marvel Jr. comic would be a pretty good place to explore this kind of idea. Just a thought.
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  5. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Kelly View Post
    By the time the Saturday morning live action show came on the air, I was in my teens.
    I wonder: did the timing of the show relative to your adolescence make the casting of Michael Gray as an older Billy (also in his teens) any more or less relatable to you? I was four to five years old when watching the show in reruns during the late 1970s, but I identified with Billy as a sort of admired older brother figure.

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  6. #66
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    I think I related to Jackson Bostwick more than Michael Gray. Jackson was tall and good looking, but a bit nerdy with a goofy smile and a bad haircut. Michael was the kind of guy that all the girls swooned over, making life miserable for the rest of us that weren't in his league.
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  7. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cmbmool View Post
    If I were DC I would put Shazam right around the time Robin started the New Teen Titans and Have Billy be a bit young like 10-12 range as Iím NOT a fan of teenage Billy of the new 52 or as I call him Punk Billy.

    Also have Shazam be his ideal adult self and not a kid in an adult body.
    New 52 Shazam felt odd.
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  8. #68
    Mighty Member Adekis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DebkoX View Post
    New 52 Shazam felt odd.
    I'm always kind of a classicist regarding Captain Marvel. I always kind of think that Captain Marvel should be a liiittle bit of a different person from Billy, so to me most versions of the character since the Crisis feel odd on some level. It's a preference I've just come to accept will probably never be in the mainstream view of the character again though. It's just life.
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  9. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adekis View Post
    I'm always kind of a classicist regarding Captain Marvel. I always kind of think that Captain Marvel should be a liiittle bit of a different person from Billy, so to me most versions of the character since the Crisis feel odd on some level. It's a preference I've just come to accept will probably never be in the mainstream view of the character again though. It's just life.
    I've always liked the separate personas for Billy and Marvel too. I also favor the costume without the button over the shoulder.

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