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Marvel One-Shot: “All Hail the King” Review

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Before you see Shang-Chi, you may want to watch or rewatch these Marvel projects. 

For the most part in this exciting chapter in the next phase of the MCU, Shang-Chi tells it’s own standalone origin story. However, throughout the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s history there are pieces you could revisit which would make your viewing experience probably much better and catch you up too speed as Marvel and Disney + are giving you a refresher on all things Ten Rings. 



The terrorist organisation has been part of the MCU since the very beginning, when Tony Stark got kidnapped by them in Afghanistan in 2008’s Iron Man. The Ten Rings then resurfaced in 2013’s Iron Man 3 , when their mysterious and shadowy leader The Mandarin( Sir Ben Kingsley) was revealed to be a cover for Aldrich Killian played by Guy Pearce. The Mandarin was actually a washed up actor by the name of Trevor Slattery, who was bribed with drugs and money to play the part.

Newley added conveniently onto Disney + is  2014’s Marvel’s One Shot titled All Hail the King, which was originally released on the Thor: The Dark World Blu-ray. It follows Trevor who is now in prison for posing as The Mandarin and is dealing with prisoners who worship him and hate him, especially the Ten Rings who have hunted him down and want Slattery out of prison because the actual Mandrin wants to meet him and reclaim his name back, I certainly hope we get this meeting in Shang-Chi. 

This One-Shot is a hilarious obscene epilogue to Iron Man 3 where Trevor has been enjoying the notoriety and is now being interviewed by a documentary filmmaker named Jackson Norris. He’s discussing with Trevor the possibilities of The Ten Rings being angry with him for impersonating their leader. This is new to him and of course paranoia ensues.

Photo: Marvel Studios

Ben Kingsley has some quick witted dialogue from writer/director Drew Pearce. Slattery is both delusional and oblivious which definitely brought some entertaining results. It works so well with a dark comedic tone whilst having a 1970’s aesthetic feel attached to it. It serves to tie up lose ends from the Iron Man trilogy and seemingly sets up more things to come aka Shang-Chi. 



Scoot McNairy was also fun to watch as he grows in frustration to Trevor’s utter ignorance to all his surroundings. There’s also some twists and a really fun cameo in the mid-credits sequence, a character whom we haven’t seen in quite a while. 

Photo: Marvel Studios

Overall this 14 minute short film which was initially released as a bonus on the Blu-ray for Thor: The Dark World has now major ramifications and significance within the Marvel Cinematic Universe now that the Ten Rings organisation have taking centre stage. 

All Hail the King is now streaming on Disney+. And finally on September 1st Marvel Studios Legends will release a new recap episode focusing on The Ten Rings. 

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Marvel Studios’ Moon Knight | Official Trailer | Disney +

A former U.S. marine, struggling with dissociative identity disorder, is granted the powers of an Egyptian moon god. But he soon finds out that these newfound powers can be both a blessing and a curse to his troubled life.

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Genre:

Action, Adventure, Drama

Release Date:

March 30, 2022 (Disney +)

Creator:

Doug Moench

Cast:

Starring Oscar Isaac, Ethan Hawke, Gaspard Ulliel

Plot Summary:

A former U.S. marine, struggling with dissociative identity disorder, is granted the powers of an Egyptian moon god. But he soon finds out that these newfound powers can be both a blessing and a curse to his troubled life.

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Star Wars: The Book of Boba Fett Chapter 2 Review: The Tribes of Tatooine

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The following review contains spoilers

The second chapter of The Book of Boba Fett is officially here and it picks up right where Chapter One left off. Chapter two entitled “The Tribes of Tatooine’ delivers one of the best and thematically rich episodes of classic star wars to date as the second chapter expands the mythology and is seeped into its own culture. 

“The Tribes of Tatooine” is directed skilfully by Academy Award-nominee Steph Green and written by Jon Favreau and utilises the narrative by telling two different tales at the same time and I found that it works to their advantage. The Book of Boba Fett showcases the present in where Boba and Fennec Shand are now inside the underbelly of the Tatooine crime world and are trying to figure out exactly who sent those assassins as seen in Chapter One “Stranger in a Strange Land”. Then there’s the past which showcases some of my favourite parts and seems to be the bigger plot of the show which continues to show how the former Bounty Hunter came back from near death with the help of the Natives. This allows the series to fill in the gaps of Boba Fett’s story since his last appearance in 1983s Return of the Jedi. 

The episode opens with a high angled shot of the rocky desert landscape outside Jabba’s palace. As Fennec Shand delivers the Order of the Night Wind Assassin to the feet of Boba Fett, which helps set some engaging events in motion from the offset. What follows is a Rancor fakeout, an icy reception at the mayor’s office and neatly waving Hutt Twins who threaten to claim the palace back. Bureaucracy plays a vital part in chapter two as mayor Moz Shaiz offers Boba some advice about ruling after he has the assassin killed and treats Boba off by paying him like he’s hauled in a bounty. After being sent back to the Sanctuary, talks about the assassins are quickly forgotten as thumping drums start to play in the background as it’s shown that Jabba the Hutt’s cousins have come to Tatooine to lay claim to their cousins’ palace as I previously mentioned. 

Photo: Lucasfilm

With a familiar Wookie from the comics Black Krrsantan appearing by their side, this provides one of the episodes best standoffs. During this moment is where I felt The Book of Boba Fett gearing towards the original trilogy as the style and aesthetic is very 70’s and vintage. Its advantage in storytelling is that The book of Boba Fett has shaped new edgier Star Wars stories as, despite only landing on a few locations, Tatooine is teeming with life, scum and villainy that truly can be expected from this hostile planet. This episode also shows Temurea Morrison’s Boba slowly growing into the role of a leader. 

Photo: Lucasfilm

Whilst Fett is resting inside his bacta tank, he experiences a flashback of his time with the Tusken Raiders. Chapter two takes a more meaningful approach in its portrayal of the Tuskens. The characters have been in a Galaxy Far, Far Away for many years in various Star Wars films and tv shows. The book of Boba Fett chooses however to dive into who these people are and what their motivations are. What we’ve been led to believe is that these Indigenous people of Tatooine were aggressive and blood-thirsty bandits, it turns out however that they’re very much misunderstood as in fact they’re just trying to live their lives whilst people intrude on their land. I loved seeing the day to day lives of the tribe as Boba creates a kinship with the Tusken leader as he trains with them. One of the young Tuskens is like his shadow, always following along beside him. Boba cares for them, mourns their dead and partakes in their rituals. During the 51 minute runtime, Boba finds a way to protect them from danger and tries to better their circumstances without changing their ways. 

Chapter two also includes a phenomenal sequence in which the famed Bounty Hunter brings out his brutal side. He steals a set of speeders from a biker gang and then proceeds to launch an assault on the train that killed his newfound friends. What follows is an adorable but hilarious training montage as Boba teaches the Tuskens some new tricks as he goes through his battle plan, tactics and how to ride and jump from a speeder.  The train sequence is a phenomenal set piece and action sequence, it’s truly the franchise’s answer to Mad Max: Fury Road as scenes fuel with kinetic energy. 

Photo: Lucasfilm

This is a classic western story of an outsider getting to know the native species as it effectively turns Tatooine into the Western planet. However one of the things that feel held back at the moment is the series’s present storyline as there is a lack of attention paid. 

Overall in the final act of chapter two, the dead have been burned and the spice has been captured. Boba Fett is welcomed into the Tusken Chief’s tent with a gift for his helpful service with humble gratitude and amazement, especially when a small lizard climbs into his nose and guides him which gets real weird once Boba is taken on a hallucinogenic journey. With The Tribes of Tatooine, The Book of Boba Fett reminds us that Star Wars has so much more to give than the Skywalkers, Jedi and epic space battles it’s ultimately about the individual stories, rich cultures, world-building and shared experiences. 

The Book of Boba Fett Chapter 2, “The Tribes of Tatooine,” is streaming now on Disney+. Future episodes premiere on Wednesdays.

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Star Wars: The Book of Boba Fett Chapter 1 Review: Stranger in a Strange Land

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The following review contains spoilers

Boba Fett has been a beloved Star Wars character ever since his debut in the infamous Holiday Special and made his big onscreen appearance 41 years ago in The Empire Strikes Back. We then later on learn about the origins of the renowned bounty hunter in Attack of the Clones and in the Clone Wars animated series. The appearance of Boba Fett in The Mandalorian season two was also a welcoming surprise as last we saw of the bounty hunter was when he fell into the Sarlacc pit during the events of ‘Return of the Jedi”. 

How did he survive? well, that’s the very first thing covered in the opening of the series premiere which splits its time between flashbacks to what happened after Fett’s downward slope into the pit, as well as the events following The Mandalorian season 2, in which Boba (Temuera Morrison), alongside his loyal assassin Fennec Shand (Ming-Na Wen) navigate the galaxy’s underworld when they return to the sands of Tatooine to stake their claim on the territory once ruled by Jabba the Hutt and his crime Syndicate. 

Chapter one reminded me why I love Star Wars as this episode gave me the classic, vintage feels mixed with Lawerence of Arabia and The Godfather, as both Fett and Shand take down the seedy underbelly of Tatooine. Directed by showrunner Robert Rodriguez and written by Jon Favreau, take a reflective approach in order to fill in the gaps of Fett’s past in which he’s scarred by. 

The opening chapter of the series entitled “Stranger In a Strange Land” shows that Fett still needs medical treatment for his escape from the acid-filled Sarlacc pit as we see him lying inside a Bacta Tank, which provides brief flashbacks to his birthplace Kamino and to the Geonois arena where his father Jango Fett was killed By Mace Windu. 

We also see flashbacks to recent events especially his escape which is executed quickly as he’s shortly running out of time. Boba breathes fresh air from the supply of an expired and eroded Stormtrooper whilst punching a hole through the Sarlacc’s thick stomach. He fires his flamethrower through it and tunnels his way out onto the surface and emerges in front of the wreckage of Jabba’s sail barge. 

Photo: Lucasfilm

After being left for dead and enduring the pain and suffering of being slowly digested, Fett encounters Tatooine’s infamous residents. First Jawa scavengers steal his armour and leave him for dead again. Then becoming dehydrated, Tusken Raiders discover him and force him into subjugation. What follows is an unfortunate escape plan as he survives a brawl with a Tusken Massiff. 

Meanwhile in present-day Tatooine, Boba Fett and Fennec Shand start to secure their hold on crime lord Jabba the Hutt’s former territory, though conflict begins to simmer between the two as Fennec recommends that a more violent rule will surly guarantee a more stable transition of power . However Fett takes a far more measured approach by working by a code of honour that somewhat excludes torture or killing to send a message as “Jabba ruled with fear, I Intent to rule with respect”. 

Photo: Lucasfilm

Fett awakens from the tank as he dons armour and receives visitors in his newly claimed throne room, where a torture droid ( voiced by Matt Berry) announces guests who bring tributes to him as a gesture of being under Fett’s leadership. An Aqualish hands over a tribute of New Republic credits, Dokk Strassi, a Trandoshan leader Fett once worked for, offers a Wookie pelt, two Gamorrean guards pledge their loyalty and a suspicious display of respectfulness comes from Madam Garsa Flip (Jennifer Beals) who is the proprietor of The Sanctuary an upscale Mos Spa Cantina. 

Photo: Lucasfilm

Many of Jabba and Bib’s former subjects are prepared to bend the knee to Boba Fett, well not all of them. As Mos Espa mayor not only fails to show up to the palace in person but sends his majordomo (David Pasquesi) to collect tribute from Fett and as Fett and Shand leave the Cantina they’re ambushed by many assassins with batons that can stun you and energy shields. What follows is a badass parkour pursuit as Fennec kills one and captures the other though we’ll have to wait till next week to see who the assassins work for and who especially is the Mayor??.

This episodes big fight sequence is a battle between a six-legged sand monster that is very reminiscent of classic star wars and feels like a Ray Harryhausen stop motion puppet. This victory in the eyes of the Tusken Raiders makes Boba a made man as the Tusken leader hands boba a gourd which is a sign of respect or acceptance into the tribe. 

Photo: Lucasfilm

Wen truly shines as the cunning enforcer/assassin Fennec Shand her skillset is utilised throughout this first chapter. She’s a compelling lead and delivers her lines ruthlessly. 

And Morrison’s portrayal depicts a man that’s been though hell and now onto more of a redemptive path. His delivery and humour truly flesh out the character. Fennec surly feels obliged to Fett because he saved her but chapter one also implies that she would do things differently if she were the crime lord. Life on Tatooine is hard as honour amongst thieves thrives thrives amongst the town. 

The episode also features an epic theme, from Ludwig Göransson who also composed both seasons of The Mandalorian.

Overall Chapter One “Stranger in a Strange Land” is certainly a promising start and offers us glimpses on where the Book of Boba Fett could ultimately be heading as it features action and Star Wars nostalgia. 

The Book of Boba Fett Chapter 1, “Stranger in a Strange Land,” is streaming now on Disney+. Future episodes premiere on Wednesdays.

 

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