FFPC1 - Wonder Woman

Intro by Ben Harrison

When we were first starting Friendly Fire we knew this podcast had a problem: The premise sounds really bad. I gave our pilot-episode to some executives at various podcast networks who said they really enjoyed listening to us take batting practice on Saving Private Ryan, but there is just no market for this show. Nobody is going out of their way to listen to a war movie podcast! People hate wars! These executives were nice to us, but basically said: ”Good luck and have fun with your silly project!”

About a year and a half into doing this show I think it's safe to say we proved them wrong. I still don't know why anybody listens, I can't imagine hearing about a show with our show's premise and giving it a try, so: ”Thank you! This is your reward!” and it is also sort of my reward because a lot of the movies on our new sub-list of films for this bonus podcast are movies that I just really like watching and thinking about. As Friendly Fire took shape we realized that we liked the edge cases a lot but the movies that Hollywood is pushing hard right now are part of these shared universe super-franchises and if we start letting a few of those into the main feed we might find ourselves straying quite far from our original theme and trying to explain why Ant-Man and the Wasp or whatever is on the show.

But a few of those movies stand out as worthy contenders. Wonder Woman came out in 2017 and was a total phenomenon. It charts the origin story of Amazonian demigod Diana Prince as she leaves the safety of her super-chill Mediterranean island-lifestyle and goes out into a world in the throes of World War I and, outraged by how mad the world has gone, she sets about trying to kill Aries, the God of war. She is intense, she totally kicks ass, and she captured our collective imagination. And this is actually kind of a war movie: We see allied soldiers going over the top, we see airplanes bombing munitions depots, we see stuffy British guys looking at maps and wood paneled rooms in Westminster.

World War I is not the obvious place to set a superhero movie, except here it totally works and we will get into the why of that in the episode. Patty Jenkins has a great command of the camera and gets an amazing subtle performance out of star Gal Godot who can write her own ticket after this roll. The film rises above the whole corny-ass shared-universeness of contemporary Hollywood franchises. It is like if you walked into a Domino's franchise and instead of the same old reliable but ultimately mediocre pizza every other Domino's sells this one Domino's is selling amazing world-class pizza. So here you go: You earned it! We made a deal, and a deal is a promise, and a promise is unbreakable! Today on Friendly Fire: Wonder Woman.

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