One of the reasons I started GeekMundo was after being highly irritated over the fanboys praising the fuckery that was Transformers: Dark of the Moon. I was hoping for better from Michael Bay this time–especially after he dumped Shia LaBeouf–but I also expected the worst. Alas, that’s exactly what I got a glimpse of after watching yesterday’s Transformers: Age of Extinction Super Bowl spot.
This is a fandom I have a very big attachment to. I’ve been a Transformers fan almost all my life. I almost passed out with joy after hearing Metroplex say, “Metroplex heeds the call of the last Prime.” I’ve got the tattoos. I’ve shed very real tears for my beloved Autobots. I’ve cheered for my equally beloved Decepticons. I love Optimus Prime’s nobility and humanity, despite being an AI. I appreciate Megatron’s ruthlessness, and Soundwave’s loyalty. Shit, I even love Starscream’s ambition, and the comedy that results when he fails. There are days when I’ve felt like Omega Supreme, misunderstood and guarded. Remember that episode where Omega finally tells Optimus why he has problems with the Constructicons? I cried with Omega because I knew what it felt like to be betrayed by people you thought were your friends.
We all form attachments to certain things and fandoms, and as geeks some of our attachments can be seen as weird, or ridiculous to the casual/social fan, but nobody can tell another person what they should or shouldn’t be attached to. That would involve walking in that person’s shoes their entire life. We all know that’s impossible. The Transformers have staying power because the values espoused within the story never get old. Like G.I. Joe and Barbie, they’ve cemented their place in our pop culture landscape.
So when a director continuously, and willfully distorts good material because he is incapable of grasping what he’s working with, I pop off.
And pop off I will.
Based on yesterday’s trailer, I see that hoping Bay would have deviated from the formulaic bullshit was akin to trying to light candles in a tornado. It was futile, and at this point, absolutely asinine. Fuck fooling me twice. This man has fooled people thrice. Removing Shia will not save this mess because the material is above Bay’s scope. He lacks the creativity to stay true to the story. I mean, look at the drama with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
I watched the trailer and there were so many questions… For example, what’s up with Grimlock’s horns?
I don’t understand the need to add horns to Grimlock aside from cosmetic purposes, something that shows me they needed little shit like that to make this swill easier to digest. He would have been fine without the horns, but he’s giving me Dungeons and Dragons teas. Also, Prime being small enough to ride Grimlock? The appeal of Grimlock is that he is a bit of a leader in his own right.
Once again, we have yet another helpless “maiden” in need of rescuing. It’s the same thing in every TF film so far. The closest we got to a kick ass female in the movie was Megan Fox, and even then she was problematic. The last girl was a hot ass mess, and clearly she was there for the pervs who don’t get laid enough to ogle and fantasize about. Just make a Disney Princess movie and get it over with, Bay. Just keep it out of the Transformers movies. I don’t know about you, but I know a lot of women who would be smart enough to stay the fuck out of the way of massive, battling robots. I also know plenty of women who would take up arms and fight back as opposed to being a continuous liability. It does look like homegirl was smart enough to wear sneakers or boots, and not high heels. But what’s a Michael Bay film without a little misogyny? I won’t even get started on the racism. Let’s hope that isn’t a factor in this latest, and likely disaster.
Make no mistake. Transformers: Age of Extinction will make money. I’m going to see it mainly because I kind of have to. And like the last three abominations, most people will think it’s awesome and great, while I and the other fans like myself, will seethe in a cauldron of despair and disappointment. If you have no attachment to the material on a personal level, I can understand. I am under no illusion, however.
Pretty, fanboy-approved graphics do not a good movie make. The story does. When that story is lacking, then what?