The NBA Needed A Villain.

Everything but George Lucas’ breath was signed over to Disney yesterday for 4 billion dollars. It’s historic news, no matter how mainstream your current events tastes are. 4 billion is a lot of dollars – it’s a lot of anything, it’s 4 Chinas – and Disney has been the preeminent name for many things entertainment for over 80 years.

In honor of this transaction, likely ensuring another 3 enormously profitable decades for the Star Wars franchise, I’d like to go geek for today’s post. But Eric, you’re a loser geek everyday. Whatever. Proud to be it.

What are the worst comic book movies of all time? For the realms I play in, they’re pretty easily Batman & Robin, which was one of the most challenging hurdles ever for the Batman franchise as a whole (yet it ultimately yielded us Chris Nolan’s pristine work), and Daredevil. I’m not quite sure why people are disgusted by that one though. Was it timeless? No. Did it emerge into a franchise? No. Does everyone just loathe Ben Affleck? Probably.

My personal ‘favorite’ when it comes to unwatchable comic book movies is Spider-Man 3.

What made these movies so horrific? In my opinion, and I’m certain this is shared by others, a superhero movie, comic, what have you, is only as good as its villain!

B & R was all around campy, including way over the top cartoonish villains. That movie made a laughingstock out of Bane. Thank goodness Nolan was able to more appropriately characterize such a threatening antagonist. Daredevil’s villain in the movie was a hard-to-buy Colin Farrell costumed in simple everyday gang attire zzzzzzzzz. SM3 posed a buffet of villains, which was its problem. All were shmaefully undeveloped and underutilized.

Poor villain. Poor superhero anything.

How the hell does this tie to into sports?

Every hero needs its sinister, at-times insurmountable arch enemy. Every protagonist, needs their antagonist.

One more before the sports tie in. Superman or Spider-Man MAY be history’s greatest superheroes, but Batman (and this may be personal tastes speaking) has the most mesmerizing and lasting stories because of his endless and memorable rogue’s gallery, led of course by an anarchist psychopath, the Joker.

Quick, who’s Superman’s biggest bane…..ummm, uhhhhhh, Lex Luthor. A shrewd, cunning and ruthless, businessman. Boring. Turn on any news network these days and that’s real life. Donald Trump.

Spider-Man? Ummmmmmm. Can’t pick one. Yet, great variety though

You can’t say Batman without thinking….the Joker. He and Darth Vader (there’s another one!) are sci-fi/comics greatest adversaries. Ever.

Here we go.

Now that Lebron’s won a title he’s won some, if not most, people over. Granted the NBA lacks the bruising inside play from dominant big men it once had, but James is by far the best player in the league at FOUR positions. PG, SG, SF, PF. And because he’s no deadshot marksman from range, I’d almost say he could be a better C than a SG.

Lebron’s villain used to be, well, who? I’d say himself. His weaknesses, like a poor jumper, no clutchness and no post game. Also, his self image he created after The Decision. For a brief time when he first arrived in Miami, I recall people saying Lebron had turned heel! It just wasn’t a suitable role that Lebron could play. If Superman’s going to be evil, it needs to be Bizarro, not The Man Of Steel himself.

Another question. Why in the world do the people keep picking the Celtics to continue to challenge the Heat for Eastern supremacy? They’ve got two aging superstas and an immensely talented but punk point guard. Doc Rivers is a damn good coach too, but…it’s difficult for me to see them as a Finals contender yet again. I’m sure they’ll be there though.

But again, what is it about the Celtics? The Knicks are dysfunctional but the Sixers, Pacers and Nets are all improving, so why aren’t of those chic choices to topple Miami? Forecasters love them some upstarts.

The answer is that none have the proper villainy for Lebron.

The C’s have Kevin Garnett.

Before even a half of play was over on the NBA’s opening night, Garnett shunned Ray Allen’s friendly and professional gesture towarsds him and waved/threw an elbow at the head of Mario Chalmers.

Garnett is a legendary player, but he’s morphed into legendary asshole as well. He’s the NBA’s get-off-my-lawn guy. True curmudgeonry.

Every hero needs their villain. Who’d Jordan have to overcome for his glory and titles? The Bad Boys.

Bird was one of the original assholes. ‘Who’s coming in second.’

Now the entire NBA, but mostly Lebron and the Heat, have an unmasked, but very ornery and at times devious Kevin Garnett to help pen the perfect superhero story.  

It’s going to be a great season!


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