Saturday, May 11, 2013

Aqua Review On IMDB - Long Overdue!

However, here it is and here we are - with enough hindsight to properly set it up against the backdrop of Avengers films, Cappo films and Batty films - hmm?   Seven years removed from the King of the Seven Seas' great, terrific, spectacular debut on network television (not counting the episode of Smallville titled ''Aqua'' and subsequent much-needed recasting of the main part that proved once again that third time was the charm: as they found Justin Hartley on the third wave -pun fully intended- and he absolutely was what a young ''A.C. not yet AQ'' Arthur Curry still oblivious to his origins and abilities -and living a carefree existence in the Florida Keys- should be and should have always been!)

See, now, all of the above (and some more to be found below!) was left out of the aforementioned review - due to IMDB's lamentable 1000 word limit!  Thank the Good Lord that it isn't a 1000 character limit, of course: but damn it, it is so restrictive sometimes!  Granted, this sort of subject can be dealt with in few words - after all, we are not talking about the deadly pollution of the seas and its repercussions worldwide, or moratoriums on whale-hunting and dolphin-hunting that are simply not respected or, once again, the coral reef's last stand and, by direct association, the planet's last stand too...   This is merely a review about a fictional, idealized character that was finally given a shot at his own TV glory, back in 2006, and it didn't pass due to budget restrictions and American TV network red tape!  We'd sure need a guy of this type (or several) in order to properly deal with the ecological chaos running wild on the globe and getting worse each passing day due to our neglect and pure and simple lack of caring...  But there is no Aquaman. And if there were, he'd be self-absorbed as he was portrayed in this pilot for a porposed (porpoised? purpoised? proposed!) series that had him a tiny bit worried about the seas, sure - but mostly intrigued by mythical Atlantis, the Bermuda Triangle, his links to both and a certain alluring at first but quickly nothing but feral Siren that shows up and gets his Atlantean pheromones going... 

And then the Siren became Wonder Woman!  Read up, now, what I was forced to leave out of my review - due to lack of space...

I mentioned Adrianne Palicki - before she was Wondy, she was the Siren
here; and a million times more feral than a Fury or a Terminatrix (so
sorry, T3 Kristanna Loken - you were not even close!) but there is more
amusing stuff to note here. Cary Elwes could have been cast as Aquaman
years ago - right after The Princess Bride in fact! He was, instead,
cast in Wondy's failed pilot (but not as Steve Trevor - how odd is that
- the supporting character who is effectively replacing Aquaman in the
Justice League right now as the token blond guy of the group! But
Trevor has no powers whatsoever? What gives...? Oh yes - neither does
the Batman! So never mind that now...) and even more amusing of all,
Elwes is Aquaman's voice in ''The Flashpoint Paradox'' animated movie,
being released in 2013. Cary - not Justin, but not Alan Ritchson either
- thank God!

But forget all about Palicki - A.C. had a bevy of beauties surrounding him on this show and more promised to him - as Mera had not yet been cast, after all...!  She would eventually surface, side-by-side with him, but on another episode of Smallville as A.C. was, again, portrayed not by Justin but by that American Idol guy - Alan Ritchson.   Too bad  none of the supporting cast of this MERCY REEF pilot made the transition to SMALLVILLE in the end: many of them could have fit in splendidly well.  Too bad Ving Rhames' character of McCaffery, especially, was never recuperated too, and used at least for a few episodes on Smallville like A.C. himself was - for they sure could have used the witty repartee, quality dialogue-delivery, screen presence, star quality and acting skills...   
Speaking of him, just for the sake of not wasting anything, not even a word, I'd like to add here the other line I had to cut out from my over-1000 word review there...

The role of McCaffery was a product of the Aquaman comic-book series at the time (written and drawn by... well, sorry, again I draw a blank on this one!  But you can google it and find out!)
and it became an even more interesting character as portrayed by Mr. Rhames.

Aw, damn - we had no space to mention the great soundtrack, too - including the music used for the trailer (at least) and forevermore identified with the Sea King now: Trust Company's Downfall.  Hmm... In retrospect, that seemed to have been one heck of a bad omen now, eh? And yet the song seemed to say, way before the character himself began to (in recent stories penned by Geoff Jones or something) to all the nay-sayers and foolish detractors of this character: ''you don't know squat about who I really am: here, fools, I'll show you ANOTHER SIDE OF ME... ONE YOU WON'T SOON FORGET!'' (Hmm, as I say in the review, though, hindsight being 20/20, obviously, it wasn't a good omen for A.C. at all, to select that tune there...! But then, other characters seem to like it enough to make it all their own as well - so A.C. is not the only one taking this downfall or whirlpool/downward spiral, ultimately! Enjoy the reverse buoyancy, y'all now!)


Here's to a series that would have been outright awesome - ON THE SEVENTH ANNIVERSARY (very nearly) of its still-born disappearance...  Aquaman's Mercy Reef...

Photo Credits: Gough/Millar - WB
Don't hold it against him, Mera! 
He was young - he didn't know 
what he was doing...!


Blogger Luminous (\ô/) Luciano™ said...

Amusingly enough - very aquamusing indeed - it is fascinating to note that on its revamped website (to go with its ''NEW 52'' gimmick) DC has a shortened list of all live action depictions of their heroes: AQUAMAN is on the list, headlining it even, due to simple alphabetical order - but still! However, conspicuously absent from the list is the more recent ''failed pilot'' given to one Wonder Woman - portrayed in it by the same Adrianne Palicki who was Aquaman's nemesis Siren in this pilot episode which we praise right here.

Also absent from the list are both LEAGUES: the terrible TV movie about the Justice League at the time that it was turned into a farce by wordsmiths J.M. De Matteis and Keith Giffen (both, incredibly enough still in the employ of DC...) and the much-better, far more respectable LXG - League of Extraordinary Gentlemen...

In the latter's case, the only possible reason why it is omitted is that it did not really feature ''DC characters'' per say: it featured various classic literature characters taken out of various books (such as 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea, Dracula and King Solomon's Mines) and assembled to battle an insidious enemy no one could battle alone (hey - sort of like... The Avengers, is it not?!? How amusing - again.)

But to go back to THE LIST: the aqua-pilot episode is indeed listed not as ''Mercy Reef'' as it was pitched to the network as, back in 2006 - but only as ''AQUAMAN'' -as it should have been all along.

What an about-face by a two-faced company like DC really, truly is...!


9:21 PM  
Blogger Luminous (\ô/) Luciano™ said...

Now the hopes are, indeed, to see the failed TV pilot turned into... a major motion picture.

And they could keep the exact same cast and it would not suffer one iota from it: the haters won't come and see it even if Brad Pitt is cast as Aquaman and if Christopher Nolan directs it. I doubt it anyway!!!

Bring back Justin Hartley as Aquaman - surround him with Ving Rhames, Lou Diamond Philips; maybe Patrick Duffy this time too; every aquaficionada willing to do most of the film in a bikini; clone Adrianne Palicki and have a thousand sirens just like her; bring in a solid character-actor as the main villain of the piece; add Mera in there somewhere - and you've got it made!

It can't be any worse than the fiasco Ryan Reynolds headlined as ''Green Lantern''...!

Eh, DC?


9:28 PM  
Blogger Luminous (\ô/) Luciano™ said...

On second thought, given the awful (aqua-awful?) chlorine experience Justin Hartley went through while filming this gem of a pilot, everybody can sincerely doubt that he would want to reprise the role - like, ever!

He passed the torch (or, more aptly said, passed the trident, really) right back to Alan Ritchson on several occasions anyway - in Smallville.

That episode in which the LEAGUE was formed - with him as Green Arrow, Alan as Aquaman, Tom Welling as... er, well, as Clark! And for some odd reason Cyborg and Impulse (IMPULSE!) rounded up the initial roll call there... It was so apparent that Justin was joyfully calling someone else ''AQUAMAN''... Tongue firmly in cheek!

Flash-forward several episodes (and seasons, too?) and that episode featuring Green Arrow and Aquaman together again (they were joined at the hip, once, since Mort Weisinger gave birth to both on the same day - heck, they were triplets, but the third blondy, Johnny Quick, didn't age as gracefully as the other two...) and both are caught in a trap - and can't simply walk out of it! in comes their saviour - in the shapely form of MERA! Yes, MERA! She sees the predicament both cool dudes are in an immediately knows what she has to do - for she has, conveniently enough, the perfect power to do it, too! Justin's G.A. is trapped inside a water tank of all things - he's no Houdini (that's Mister Miracle's territory - and he never showed up in Smallville!) - he's gonna drown, baby! Meanwhie, right across from him, Alan's A.C. is chained like an Hercules again - a sadly dehydrated Hercules...! All that Mera has to do is transfer the water through the tank (shattering it in the process) from G.A. to A.C. - et voilà! Arrow is saved - and A.C. instantly regains his strength and breaks his chains within seconds!

Thank you, MERA!

Those were two instances in which Justin Hartley essentially ''passed the trident'' - and he certainly doesn't expect it passed back onto him ever again!

Maybe now that that insufferable Fast And Furious series of movies is done with (howcome no one has done a Fat And Furry spoof of it; that's what I wonder about!) maybe... just maybe... PAUL WALKER can step into the role he professed he would gladly do, once upon a blue moon - or blue sea...


7:22 AM  

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