Top 23 things that Joss Whedon should do post-Avengers
|LISTS - MOVIE LISTS|
Apart from the Dance of Joy, that is, for getting to direct the biggest superhero movie ever...
In honour of Joss Whedon’s birthday yesterday (Numfar! Do the Dance of Honour!), Shadowlocked presents a list of twenty-three suggestions for where Joss Whedon could go from here.
While Whedon’s had deserved cult success up to this point, The Avengers is his chance to really break into the mainstream and hopefully get the levels of success that his talent deserves. With great box office will surely come great opportunities. Warren Ellis said that after The Avengers, Joss Whedon would be able to print his own money. Come to think of it, that would be awesome, with a picture of Joss’ face on it (which non-geeks wouldn’t recognise, and then we could educate them!), and a quote like “Grr Argh!” or one of literally hundreds (and probably thousands) of others. And we could do the Dance of Capitalist Superiority every time we spent it.
Not that I’m trying to dictate exactly what Joss should do with his life (that would be rather Dollhouse-like); these are just suggestions / over-enthusiastic fanboy ravings (some of them more realistic than others, but all of them arguably within his wheelhouse (which never stops turning)) for things that would be cool. It’s not a list of demands to pressurise Joss; hopefully he won’t be 'Heart, Broken'.
We wouldn’t want him to explode (again—see #87) by trying to do too much at once. And he should also get the chance to sleep…for a little while. :)
This is not a comprehensive list. There have been other possible projects mentioned at various points, and Joss’ career to date has been filled with variety and surprises, with many fans seeing these as being amongst the strongest elements of his writing.
The light-hearted but heart-felt list (felt is light...) follows, in no particular order. (Why 23 entries? Um...Joss Whedon's just turned 47, which is a prime number...and 23 is also prime, so... Do I deconstruct your segues? Huh?)
--Finally be widely recognised as the successor to William Shakespeare (and even improver-upon, if that’s a word; and if not, I’ll take a leaf from both Whedon and Shakespeare’s books, and invent it). Or perhaps Sons of Anarchy’s Kurt Sutter is even more quintessentially Shakespearean in his tragedy. At any rate, Joss Whedon is a worthy successor to William Shakespeare, at least.
--Write and direct an incredible The Avengers trilogy to put Christopher Nolan’s in-progress Batman trilogy, the Lord of the Rings trilogy, and the Star Wars trilogies (yes, plural) to shame. And then, for good measure, bring back the British The Avengers spy series featuring John Steed and Emma Peel. (“Joss Whedon’s Avengers? Oh yeah, that’s awesome. Which one?”)
--Get Firefly recommissioned, bringing back all the cast and crew (they can get round the events of Serenity…well, somehow) for a glorious 20 season run, maybe ending in a similar way to Kaylee actress Jewel Staite’s hilariously awesome suggestions.
--Many more people who think that Buffy the Vampire Slayer is “just a silly vampire show” to be proved wrong and become fans. Admittedly, this is more of an indirect thing/causality, but hopefully it’ll happen.
--Set up some kind of business model where it’s impossible for great genre shows to be cancelled before their time. (The industry's a mess, and he just needs...to rule it...)
--Make Doctor Horrible's Sing-a-Long Blog into an epic saga on the scale of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, with Felicia Day somehow still part of it, of course.
--Continue making awesome comics (though I haven’t read Buffy Season 8 or Angel Season 6, which have received generally mixed reactions from the fandom, so I can’t comment on any criticisms of those). Among other things, write much more of the awesome Fray. And maybe a movie adaptation, directed by Joss Whedon or Luc Besson (Fifth Element, which Fray's artwork was somewhat influenced by).
--After showrunner Steven Moffat and star Matt Smith have finished working on Doctor Who (which hopefully won’t be for a long time yet, since they, along with the rest of the cast and crew, are doing a brilliant job), take over as showrunner of Doctor Who, perhaps with Amy Acker playing the Doctor, as suggested by Television Without Pity. The list doesn’t seem to adequately recognise that the show is more than fine with its current showrunner Steven Moffat and star Matt Smith, especially the episodes Steven Moffat writes himself (like the first and second episodes of the current season), but otherwise has some interesting suggestions. Amy Acker’s played a geeky scientist (and a really old character who can switch bodies) on Angel, and a doctor (and someone who can have lots of different personalities) on Dollhouse, as well as being one of the best actresses working today. Of course, they’d need to find some way around the dramatic plot development in S6 E1, ‘The Impossible Astronaut’, but I’m sure Steven Moffat knows what he’s doing, or is smart enough to make up some kind of brilliant solution, just like a certain Time Lord. And also, the brilliant, intense, charismatic Paul Bettany (Geoffrey Chaucer in A Knight’s Tale, Master and Commander, Inkheart, Priest, Wimbledon) needs to play the Doctor at some point.
--Team up with author J.K. Rowling on a (not cancelled) Harry Potter TV series (or even a non-Harry Potter project). The epic sagas of Harry Potter and Buffy the Vampire Slayer are somewhat similar, but distinct enough that both writers could bring something to the table. Sadly, they missed the opportunity with yesterday's much-heralded Pottermore announcement, which turns out to be a Harry Potter social networking site (and there will also be upcoming e-book versions of the Harry Potter books). Moreover, it’s interesting to note that the fake fan made trailer for a Harry Potter spin-off series, 'The Aurors' (cruelly released on April Fools’ Day), somewhat resembles Angel.
--Get Wastelanders, his planned web series with writer Warren Ellis (who continued the Astonishing X-Men comics after Joss’ run finished), made; and for it to be brilliant despite the lack of singing.
--This is less down to Joss (and co-writer and director Drew Goddard (Buffy, Cloverfield)) than it is dependent on the studio, but Cabin in the Woods finally getting released. It looks like it’s going to happen now, but, like with many of his characters, you never know if its impending happiness is suddenly going to be snatched away in a suitably Whedonesque twist.
--Kill off hundreds more of our favourite characters, in heart-breakingly awesome fashion. (Or not.)
--Continue giving (and conducting) hilarious and witty interviews. Unlike Angel, he's good with the talking.
--Carry on having fun with language, inventing words, and writing wonderfully quotable dialogue (“That was well said, wasn’t it, Zoe?”; “It had a kind of poetry to it, sir.”)
and even more examples of Firefly's shiny dialogue here:
--Find even more previously unknown/un-famous actors and actresses and give them the showcase they deserve. E.g. Summer Glau, David Boreanaz, Andy Hallett, Fran Kranz, Enver Gjokaj, Dichen Lachman, and many others.
--Make a comedy show/sitcom. (Like Joss Whedon’s SugarShock comic, free online, for example, but maybe a little less wacky.) Buffy and Firefly, for instance, can be utterly hilarious, but they’re both brilliant mixtures of many different genres. If he were to make a show that concentrated primarily on comedy (assuming, of course, that he could force himself to focus on one genre, that is), who knows how funny it could be? (No power in the ‘Verse could stop us laughing.) Though arguably there isn’t much need for Joss to do a comedy, since the currently airing How I Met Your Mother is just about as close to a Whedon sitcom you can get without Joss Whedon actually making it.
--More musicals! Arguably, ‘Once More, With Feeling’ is the finest episode of television ever (though obviously needs to be understood in context to appreciate it fully), and Doctor Horrible is the finest episode/pseudo-episode/mushortio/forty-five minutes of content that relies on no previous knowledge (except for superhero conventions in general, and pretty much everyone's (a hero in their own way...I mean,) fairly aware of them by this point).
--Work with his brothers Zack and Jed, and his sister-in-law Maurissa Tancharoen, more in future. Not only did they help him write Doctor Horrible, but the husband-and-wife writing team of Jed and Maurissa were the best writers on Dollhouse, and Zack wrote a free online eight-page Serenity comic, which pretty much perfectly captured the essence of the characters.
--Find a way to clone himself or somehow transfer his talent to other people‘s brains, like with the Dollhouse tech, only without the inherent moral compromise or impending brainpocalypse/thoughtpocalypse. Though he may have done that already, seeing as how talented (and Whedonesque) many of his writers are. As well as the aforementioned Zack Whedon, Jed Whedon, and Maurissa Tancharoen, there’s Tim Minear, Marti Noxon, Jane Espenson, and Andrew Chambliss, to name but a few—though maybe it’s just a case of talent attracting like-minded talent, or these writers just being skilled at adapting to another’s (in this case Joss’) sensibilities.
--Win more Emmys, etc. Doctor Horrible won one (despite, amusingly, never having been shown on TV), but his four terrific television shows were all virtually snubbed by the Emmys, except for a well-deserved writing nomination (but no win) for ‘Hush’, and some awards in the technical categories. Not that Joss’ work needs awards recognition in order to be awesome, but it deserves it, at any rate.
--A Spike TV series, along with Tim Minear. It'll probably never happen, because vampires don't age, and James Marsters doesn't want to reprise the character after all these years for that reason, but come on, it's set in a world with magic; they can easily find a way around that! A Spike TV movie was planned in 2005, also starring Alyson Hannigan (Willow) and Amy Acker (Fred/Illyria). If the project were ever revived, why not make it a series (which is the medium that lends itself best to Joss' style anyway)? Arguably the three (or four) best Buffyverse characters, all in one series, would be awesome, even by his standards.
--Get to tell stories in the Terminator franchise, as he argued for in amusing fashion here, though the rights have now been sold, with Justin Lin (director of the awesome action movie Fast Five, which prominently features the Whedonesque theme of found family) lined up to direct Terminator 5. Of course, there's no reason why Joss Whedon couldn't get to make a Terminator movie or TV series at some point in the future. There is no fate but what we make, after all...
--More TV, preferably a cable series of some sort (and the full, in-depth interview, where Joss talks about Dollhouse and more, can be found here). (As opposed to a Cable movie, which Thor and X-Men: First Class writer Ashley Miller wants to do—as with anything potentially cool, not that Joss shouldn’t be involved, just that it wasn’t what I was referring to/) There's more creative freedom, and cable networks are generally more willing to let a niche show grow its audience, rather than cancelling it as if someone had just mentioned that there were three flowers in a vase, the third of which being green...
And I'd like to be king of all Londinium and wear a shiny hat.
Or just he could just continue telling whatever great stories his crazy brainpan cooks up. At any rate, whatever he decides to do with the rest of his career, we’re sure to be in for some wacky fun. (This could get pretty interesting…)
Now that I've gone on about the subject at length ("I'm the Host; have you met me? I never shut up!"), have your say. Which project would you most like to see Joss Whedon do next, and why?
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