Werewolf by Night (2022)
October 7, 2022 1:45 AM - Subscribe

"Monster hunters gather to pay respects to their deceased leader and are thrust into a deadly game." - description from Disney+

Things to note:
* It’s much bloodier than Marvel’s usual.
* It’s a one-off special, not a series.
* There’s nothing extra after the credits.
posted by Pronoiac (26 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
It's a one-off, but Marvel should do more of these. This was excellent.
posted by Pendragon at 2:27 AM on October 7, 2022 [6 favorites]

So wait... are we going to see a Tomb of Dracula from Marvel? As a lead-in to a new Blade movie? (Which, reading my own link, indicates that a new Blade is forthcoming.)

(Please, Marvel... don't do another Man-Thing. 'Cause, really, Man-Thing?)
posted by SPrintF at 9:55 AM on October 7, 2022

The original comic took advantage of its monthly publishing schedule by having every issue set during that month's full moon and I still think they could do something cool like that with the property.
posted by Pope Guilty at 11:18 AM on October 7, 2022 [4 favorites]

This had great performances hamstrung by poor writing and unfocused direction. I loved the idea is this but the execution was kind of blah.
posted by jeoc at 11:48 AM on October 7, 2022

Just because they made an unimpressive Man-Thing movie does not mean nothing good can be done with the character.

I almost wish they'd added film scratching to complete the black and white effect. It was almost a classic-film but I think that was missing. (Yes, I know that's as silly as digitally adding lens flare but used sparingly I think it would have added something to the atmosphere.)
posted by Karmakaze at 11:53 AM on October 7, 2022 [1 favorite]

There's no reason they couldn't do a Man-Thing - or, indeed an entire miniature Gerber-verse, including Howard the Duck and Omega the Unknown - as long as they found the right team who could catch the spirit of it. That's what they've been very good at and their Distinguished Competition less good at (with some honourably exceptions, particularly Doom Patrol and the HBO Watchmen): catching the spirit of the original comics, even if they have to change some of the details in order to do it.
posted by Grangousier at 2:13 PM on October 7, 2022 [2 favorites]

I personally found it delightful and wouldn't mind seeing these characters now and again.
posted by emjaybee at 7:38 PM on October 7, 2022 [2 favorites]

Well, I feel stupid for commenting before I watched the feature. "Ted" is the Man-Thing, right down to the whole "those who fear burn" deal. So Man-Thing is sort of MCU canon now.

almost wish they'd added film scratching to complete the black and white effect.

Thanks to your comment I looked. There were a few "dust motes" included during the opening titles. And the "reel change" cue mark appears a couple of times during the feature. But they weren't consistent about maintaining the Universal Pictures atmosphere.
posted by SPrintF at 8:07 PM on October 7, 2022 [1 favorite]

poor writing and unfocused direction

Could you elaborate on this ? I thought the writing and directing really captured the feeling of old horror movies.
posted by Pendragon at 2:07 AM on October 8, 2022 [2 favorites]

This was a perfectly cromulent Werewolf by Night for 2022. The presence of Man-Thing all the better. I would have loved a well-done Jack/Jake limited series, but in the absence of that, this tight, fun story provided a nice look at these characters I loved sooo much back in the day (and still do). I'd be interested to see Bronze Age Marvel horror adaptations, but I think the cancellation of the Dark Universe stands as a clear warning to anyone who would make a monsters-centered universe.
posted by cupcakeninja at 7:21 AM on October 8, 2022 [1 favorite]

Well I had no previous exposure to any of these characters, so I don’t know if it’s a good Werewolf by Night adaptation or not. But I thought it was great fun anyway.

And apparently Ted was another Marvel character called Man-Thing. Okay, sure.

And wikipedia tells me the first appearance of Moon Knight was in Werewolf by Night, AND that Man-Thing has appeared in the pages of She-Hulk. Now I’m imagining the possible “just a bit off-kilter Marvel heroes” crossover event.
posted by Naberius at 10:04 PM on October 8, 2022 [1 favorite]

Holy crap, the big guy with the axe (at first) is played by Kirk Thatcher, aka the punk on the bus from Star Trek IV! How cool.

Yeah, I thought that it was fine and a lot of fun. Even the occasional jankiness worked fine, as that was a hallmark of some of those horror films that this film pays tribute to. As I mentioned in this comment in the Howard the Duck movie thread, the Marvel black and white horror comics/magazines of the 70s, and their full-color comics counterparts, were their own little groove, although of course they crossed over plenty of times with the superhero stuff. So, yeah, bring in Howard the Duck, and have Dracula (I'd suggest David Thewlis; I could see him as a Marv Wolfman/Gene Colan-type Dracula very easily) in the Blade project. And, of course, more Jack and Ted.
posted by Halloween Jack at 2:53 PM on October 9, 2022 [2 favorites]

I wonder whether it was in black and white more as a tribute to the black and white comics of the seventies (which allowed them to put in more gruesome stuff just as it does here) than black and white horror movies. Made me think more of William Castle and Roger Corman than Universal, though.

Since the MCU now has Elsa Bloodstone and Monica Rambeau in it, does that mean we can have Nextwave?
posted by Grangousier at 3:18 PM on October 9, 2022 [3 favorites]

I considered talking about Nextwave but thought it would be too inside baseball. Two things that might count against it: Elsa's character and intelligence, and the uncertain timeframe. I remember enjoying the theme song, though...
posted by Pronoiac at 3:52 PM on October 9, 2022 [2 favorites]

Yeah, that would have to be about as different from the original as the Thunderbolts movie looks to be from just about any previous iteration of that group. You could have the X-verse version of Negasonic Teenage Warhead sub in for Tabitha/Boom-Boom, and have S.W.O.R.D. create Machine Man out of a combination of trying to reverse-engineer both the Vision and the Ultron Project. In fact, they could be the house team of S.W.O.R.D.
posted by Halloween Jack at 4:37 PM on October 9, 2022

I am a bit of a Man-Thing dork so was thrilled to see the ol' muck-monster here, while a bit irked that he seems to have a much richer internal life and Ted-ness to him than the "classic" Man-Thing, which is a semi-inert piece of roaming swamp horror that kills things. And with all the messing around that Marvel has done with Manny over the years, it's possible this is from some point outside the Classic Gerber run.

I thought Elsa was fine but every time she was on screen I literally had to spend a half-second reminding myself it wasn't Kristen Ritter. And if Elsa, why not the shellshocked and semi-traumatized Cullen Bloodstone while we're at it?

But yeah! Nthing all of the above. Bring on Monster of Frankenstein and a louche Guy Pearce Dracula. Throw in the Living Mummy and Manphibian, why not. I love the goofy fringes of the MCU* and there's a lot to play with there.

*I am a Marvel guy, but I do have to admit that DC does supernatural weirdness a bit better -- Deadman, Baron Winter, Mister E, even the Creature Commandos and the Haunted Tank. Shake a leg, Warner! Get weird!
posted by Shepherd at 6:45 PM on October 9, 2022 [9 favorites]

I am a bit of a Man-Thing dork

Dude, I'm a giant sized Man-Thing dork too!

Seriously though, I was completely unaware of this thing until it came out. The MCU has skirted my particular favourite era of the comics with Dr. Strange but with this one, be still my heart, are we going to see more of Marvel's 70s horror stuff come to a screen? I don't even need a movie but I'd love some kind of Monster Hunters show.

In anycase, this totally worked for me. I liked everything about it. Geez, they even referenced Wendigo!
posted by Ashwagandha at 9:08 PM on October 9, 2022 [3 favorites]

This was very fun! Wow, I honestly can't believe how much I enjoyed it.
posted by grandiloquiet at 7:56 PM on October 10, 2022 [1 favorite]

I don't even need a movie but I'd love some kind of Monster Hunters show.

Namora is going to appear in Wakanda Forever.
posted by Halloween Jack at 9:03 AM on October 11, 2022

More Werewolf by DELIGHT for me.

I had such a good time! It was a hoot and I too would like to wake up to Man-Thing offering me a fresh Bodum of coffee as I shake off the night's excesses of murdering in my wolf-form.
posted by Kitteh at 10:22 AM on October 11, 2022 [5 favorites]

The "Ted" thing just made me chuckle at first, but the more I think about it, made me wonder if they were going for "contemporary Marvel," vs. the Marvel I (GenX) grew up with. One of the points that the author of All the Marvels makes is that all the secret identity, identity revealed, etc. hijinks that I always thought of as "normal" for superhero comics is basically ancient history, as far as Marvel is concerned these days. I read comics and graphic novels regularly, but not quite enough, and not enough superhero stuff, for me to get the deep, cross-title trends. Don't know if that means we'll get a WandaVision-style Man-Thing show, but I'd watch the heck out of it.
posted by cupcakeninja at 6:06 PM on October 11, 2022

And apparently Ted was another Marvel character called Man-Thing. Okay, sure.

I don’t know enough of the background to talk knowledgeably about this, but I understand that a few months after writer Gerry Conway invented Man-Thing for Marvel, writer Len Wein came up with the generally similar Swamp Thing for DC.

Oh yeah, Conway and Wein were roommates at the time.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 5:38 AM on October 12, 2022 [1 favorite]

And apparently Ted was another Marvel character called Man-Thing. Okay, sure.

He's also the guardian of the Nexus of Realities (essentially a doorway to other worlds and dimensions) which happens to be in the Florida swamps. And whatever fears him burns at his touch (as seen in the special). He also weirdly was on a "team", the Legion of Monsters which I would not be shocked if we see it appear at some point in some movie or show (likely swapping Morbius with the reintroduced Blade probably).

Don't know if that means we'll get a WandaVision-style Man-Thing show, but I'd watch the heck out of it.

The early Steve Gerber stories featuring Man-Thing (Howard the Duck even pops up in them) would be very comparable to that and would totally work in a WandaVision style show or even a She-Hulk style show.
posted by Ashwagandha at 5:11 PM on October 12, 2022

If anyone is still reading this thread: as some of you may know, Disney+ has an occasional series, Assembled, which is like the extra featurettes on some of the DVDs and Blu-Rays that shows the making of that particular MCU movie or series. The one for this movie is called Director By Night, and it's a documentary filmed by Anthony Giacchino, brother of WBN director Michael Giacchino, who already has a pile of awards (including an Oscar) for his movie/TV soundtrack work. The Giacchino brothers did a lot of home Super 8 movie making when they were kids and teens, and that early work is interwoven with the backstage footage from WBN. It's fun to watch, even if you don't usually watch the Assembled episodes.
posted by Halloween Jack at 9:35 PM on November 4, 2022 [2 favorites]

Just finished watching both Werewolf and Director By Night back to back. We loved them so much that we’re referring to the two films collectively as Werewolf Delight.
posted by Orange Dinosaur Slide at 10:01 PM on November 4, 2022 [1 favorite]

« Older Bad Sisters: Going Rogue...   |  The Lord of the Rings: The Rin... Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments