You have to wonder about Hollywood - the suits seem so out of touch with what people want. Witness the current Chinese firedrill going on over the Green Hornet movie - a movie which stars Seth Rogen, a guy who is great in comedies, made by director Michel Gondry, who wikipedia says is noted for his inventive visual style.
Who thought that would be a good combo?
Now, as I remember it - the Green Hornet television show was light entertainment back in the 60's, but it didn't really have a huge fan following. It sort of road in on the coattails of success the Batman 60's TV show, with the characters even having a couple of crossover episodes, but never really caught on as big. I think the shows biggest claim to fame is that it helped launch the career of Bruce Lee.
Outside of that - what is the public awareness factor of this character? Not much I'm willing to bet. Even among comics fans, the comics have never done that great. They Golden Age Holyoke series only ran for 6 issues. The character was then picked up by Harvey and published until issue 47. After that there was a one shot by Dell and some TV tie ins from Gold Key - nothing outstanding.
The Hornet probably had the best comics run in 1989 when NOW Comics reintroduced the character with a series that sort of sounds like a a complete mess, but was successful enough to warrant a few spinoffs. The Now version lasted up until 1995.
I think the jury is still out on the recent Dynamite relaunch, so I'll reserve judgement on that for now except to say I don't know how smart the publisher was with the deluge of first issues and mini-series right off the bat...
But back to the Hollywood suits and their infinite wisdom - let's see - a movie featuring a golden age comics hero with art house pretensions - where have we seen that formula before? Oh yeah...
Now, I don't really have proof that the Green Hornet movie will get the same reception as the Spirit or Dick Tracy, but I think the pieces were put in place so, that's probably how the game will play out. And now it appears the studio has seen some of the footage and is having the same thoughts as this week it was announced the movie's launch date would be moved from the prized December 22 holiday spot to MLK Day (January 14th) - not really a holiday known for boffo box office openings is it?
Oh well, we still have Raimi's Shadow movie to look forward to.
Enjoy today's free comics which featuer another gun drawing golden age hero - The Clock!
Feature Comics 29
Feature Funnies 19