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Friday, April 01, 2022 

Sharon Stone to play role in new Blue Beetle movie

What veteran actress Stone is going to play here reeks of a likely insult to 2nd Blue Beetle Ted Kord. The Wrap says:
Academy Award nominee and Golden Globe and Emmy-winning actress Sharon Stone is in early talks to play villain Victoria Kord in “Blue Beetle,” DC Films’ first superhero movie starring a Latino character, TheWrap has exclusively learned. Victoria Kord is a new character created for the movie.

[...] In DC Comics, Blue Beetle is the superhero alter ego used by three different heroes, but the film will focus on Mexican-American teenager Jaime Reyes, the third character to assume the Blue Beetle mantle.

Created by Keith Giffen, John Rogers, and Cully Hamner in 2006, Jaime Reyes was introduced during the “Infinite Crisis” crossover event ahead of the launch of a new “Blue Beetle” in May 2006. Reyes is a working-class El Paso teenager devoted to his family and with no connections to superheroes prior to receiving his powers.
So here, once again, we have a case of DC/Warner using the newer characters introduced to replace the white predecessors in their costumes for adapting to movies, and not the old ones. And as noted last year, making a mistake similar to the time Kyle Rayner was written up to replace Hal Jordan as Green Lantern in 1994, the difference this time being that it's all much more politically motivated to check diversity boxes. What's most irritating about Stone's possible role here, as explained by Empire:
Stone's Victoria Kord is a new character created for the film, but with that surname, she's already rumoured to be the wife of Ted Kord, a previous Blue Beetle in the comics (see the history of the character below).

Gareth Dunnet-Alcocer wrote the script for the film, which will adapt the more recent version of the Blue Beetle character. Originally created by artist Charles Nicholas Wojtkoski and writer Will Eisner for Fox Comics' Mystery Men Comics in 1939, Blue Beetle was introduced as Dan Garret, a vigilante who fought crime using powers gained from chemical compound Vitamin 2-X, though that origin was later retconned to an archeologist with a suit and abilities derived from the alien Khaji Da scarab living weapon. He was succeeded by tech whizz Ted Kord, first appearing in Charlton Comics (which bought Fox and was itself later taken over by DC).
Predictably, they never mention what a certain character forcibly changed into a villain - and later spotlighted in Wonder Woman 1984 - did to Ted Kord in a special titled Countdown that came just before Infinite Crisis began: Max Lord was depicted murdering Ted in cold blood. And later had his neck snapped by WW to stop him from mind controlling Superman into mayhem, in a crossover between WW and Superman's titles. How odd nobody wishes to get into exact details, all because they must realize the steps since the mid-2000s are extremely controversial, and embarrassing for anybody in the know. And if they did bring them up, anybody with more common sense could make a valid argument why this is no way to introduce new protagonists to replace the previous white ones, if they won't respect the dignity of the predecessors. There's a reason why the series starring an Asian Atom, Black Firestorm and Latino Blue Beetle all lasted very short runs when they were launched back in the late 2000s. They weren't written based on merit, yet they certainly did serve as lead-ins to Marvel's own attempts to follow the same logic several years later.

Now, as though to add insult to injury, it sounds like Stone's going to play a villainess who could be the wife of Kord in this movie rendition, and what if her character is also meant to represent an "evil white woman" stereotype? As a comic publisher, DC's already been following the heavy-handed social justice narrative for plenty of time, just like Marvel, and now, it looks like their theatrical movies are taking up this path more noticeably as they go along, just like Marvel's movie division. Zack Snyder's use of the social justice-influenced Asian Atom in the Justice League movie was just the beginning. And all the while, this is being passed off as though it were truly a significant milestone, even though Orson Welles already filmed a crime drama titled Touch of Evil drawing from a Whit Masterson novel in the late 1950s, where Charlton Heston played a star of Mexican background, and that came off as far less heavy-handed from a political perspective than the script for the new Blue Beetle movie's bound to be. What Warner/DC's preparing is nothing new. Rather, it's just a project based on social justice propaganda without ensuring it'll be merit-based, and doesn't respect the older materials.

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