Welcome to the Hype?


I don't know what's going on lately, but man... every day seems to be an explosion of hype in popular culture.

Let me see if I can recap what happened just this past Thursday (in no particular order of importance):

• The title of the new James Bond film (the 24th in the series) was revealed to be Spectre and the cast was announced to much fanfare.

• Benedict Cumberbatch was confirmed to play Doctor Strange in the next Marvel film of same title.

• Ryan Reynolds was confirmed to play Deadpool in the next Marvel film of same title (but for the Fox branch of the universe).

• Krysten Ritter and Mike Colter are (unconfirmed) to be playing Jessica Jones and Luke Cage for the Marvel Netflix series of same names.

• The writer of the upcoming Pan was announced as the writer of the new Wonder Woman film.

• A new trailer for Terminator: Genisys (I think I spelled it right without looking for the first time just then) came out, and it's not entirely terrible.

The Magnificent Seven is apparently being remade, and it's apparently starring Denzel Washington and Chris Pratt.

Whew... I think that's it? Maybe? But it's a little nuts that all of this happened in one day. And all of that was hot on the heels of the day previous seeing casting announcements for Suicide Squad (Jared Leto playing The Joker in the new DC Cinematic Universe among others), and of course the new Star Wars: The Force Awakens trailer having blown up the internet this past weekend. And before that, a Jurassic World trailer. And before that...

How is anyone supposed to keep up with it all? And if it's Christmas every single day, are we going to get sensitized against all the gifts and the massive bombshell announcements? Don't get me wrong, I'm eating most of this up like an eight year old kid sitting at the foot of the Christmas tree every time that it's revealed, but I'm starting to worry that it's getting to be overwhelming for people. Go take a spin through any movie blog website like /film or Collider and every day has been major casting announcements, huge trailers, poster reveals, all sorts of things vying for your attention.

It used to be religion in Hollywood, and one of the first things you learn as an intern after how to page-check scripts, that you need to read the trades every day and scan them for each and every detail. But now all of the above information was widespread on blogs and social media instantly accessible. In fact, you'll notice that none of the links in the above are to the traditional Variety or Hollywood Reporter publications. These casting announcements used to be on the front page of trades traditionally and now they're all over your news feeds on a daily basis.

The big wave-making announcements are great, but when they increase in frequency it ends up being a lot like walking outside the San Diego Comic-Con in its present state. Crowds and crowds of people yelling loudly for your attention and your senses are so inundated that you can't process one of them let alone all of them. And I'm worried that the end result will be people tuning out. 

The curious part of this embarrassment of riches is that it seems like a good deal of it is being met with negativity, nitpicking, and in some cases: some baffling backwards thinking. Chris Pratt rides a motorcycle among velociraptors? Nerd rage! A lightsaber that looks like a broadsword? Nerd rage! The more that's being presented, the more opportunities for such fussy complaining seem to arise. And that's not even bringing up the absurd "controversy" around John Boyega appearing in the Star Wars: The Force Awakens teaser as a Stormtrooper. If there aren't nits to pick, let's turn the clock back to the 1960s for some ridiculous comments apparently. LSU professor Isaiah Lavender told The Huffington Post, "Evidently, there are still pockets of people out there in America and across the world that don't believe black people have a future."

Maybe this is all just a primer for the outrageously jam-packed 2015 that's on the horizon. Every studio is now trying to launch brands and franchises. And it's a whole lot of fun to try and keep up with anything and everything, even if it's all a bit intimidating. But you can't help but have that nagging feeling in the back of your mind that the bubble might be about to burst. Is all of the hype taking the fun out of the spontaneity of everything?

Are we losing the surprise and awe that used to be evoked when things were fresh and new because we've been so bombarded with trailers and photos and posters and featurettes and so many other things that have been so highly scrutinized (and, to be completely honest, I'm guilty of it too having frame-by-frame compared the Jurassic Park teaser trailer to the Jurassic World teaser trailer)?

All of that said, this deluge of nerdery in the form of comic books, movies, TV shows, video games, and all sorts of other media sure is a lot of fun and I'm trying to enjoy it while it lasts. But sooner or later the 5 Hour Energy that's powering it all is going to start to fade, right?