open/close all folders
Having overwhelming power is boring as hell.
— Saitama, One-Punch Man
There is no greater bore than perfection.
— General Zaroff, The Most Dangerous Game
That was the one thing I couldn't stand in the 80s, watching Hogan get beat within an inch of his life, run over with a truck, shot in the head, and buried in a landfill, but always start shaking like he had epilepsy, puffing like he had emphysema, hit a couple of crappy punches, big boot, legdrop, splat, win. It sucked in the 80s, and will suck in the 90s and, God forbid, into 2000.
I think we can all agree that if thereís one problem with Superman, itís that he doesnít have enough powers... of course, what list of Supermanís ever-changing power set would be complete without mentioning his brief tenure as a being of pure energy, allowing for Intangibility, Manipulation of Magnetic Fields, Light-Speed Travel, The Ability To Read A CD-ROM by Looking At It, and, perhaps most importantly, Not Having A Mullet Anymore (1997)
You can harm him emotionally, but since he has trouble with his memory, is there even any indication that emotional pain would even be lasting?... So when you have a character who can never truly be hurt, what does he have to fear? Nothing. Wolverine has never experienced fear.
Grant Morrison gets this. That is why his Batman stories strain all limits of credulity in favor of sheer awesomeness. Batman vs. the Devil. Batman reincarnating through history as Cave Man Batman, Witch Hunter Batman, and Pirate Batman. Batman vs. gods. Batman is axiomatically defined as that which wins. And so telling a good Batman story amounts to making that victory something interesting — not something unlikely.
Why should I care about this guy? He feels no pain and nothing can kill him, so therefore he's essentially a story device for action sequences.
The closest a fist has ever come to Steven Seagal's face in a movie is when the script calls for his character to eat a hot dog. In fact, there's a Hollywood legend that when Steven Seagal eats a hot dog, they have to slow the film down just so you can see it.
In his later movies, the fight scenes don't even bother building suspense by letting the bad guys touch Chuck. He holds a foot out, the camera settles itself behind it, and you sit back and watch as a disembodied boot mows down wave after wave of anonymous terrorist. Some actors phone it in when they're not into a movie; Chuck Norris didn't even send a fax.
Noah: Every Hulk Hogan match goes basically the same way. He starts off strong and he's just kicking this guy's ass all over the place, because Hulk Hogan's awesome and nobody can take him one-on-one. He's got the 24-inch pythons, he drinks his milk, he takes his vitamins and he's a real American. But then the bad guy does somethin' to CHEAT, that dirty sonuvabitch; anything he can do to get the advantage. And from then on, he's just pounding on Hogan. He won't give up, but every time he tries to make a comeback the fucker just goes and cheats again! COME ON, REF! Sleeper holds never work on the good guy; he almost goes out, right? But then he goes into some kinda seizure... WTF HE'S HULKING OUT! HULKAMANIA'S RUNNING WILD! NO DON'T PUNCH HIM, HE'S INVULNERABLE! (*slap!*)
—Noah Antwiler, "Black Hole of Board Games" (VOSTFR - Power Slam VCR Wrestling)
Let the guy be a little fallible. Those are the ones I am interested in watching when I go to the movies. I want to see the flaws, the dirt under the fingernails. If he is invulnerable, how can you identify with this guy? As absurd as it may seem, you have to believe in it, or else the audience won't and they won't get their money's worth.
... I'm not half as interested in the films of Steven Seagal as I am the man. The crazy, crazy man. While Bruce Lee, a charismatic icon of timeless cool, was flying around the screen with a superhuman speed that seemed like camera trickery, Seagal barely seemed to be moving, either his face or his body. With zero emotion and never leaving his feet, his unflashy style of short punches and joint-locks felt like a slightly brawnier bathroom slap-fight between two highschool cheerleaders.
—Stuart Millard, Smoke & Mirrors and Steven Seagal