Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Another big scoop today! Through my Hollywood connections and the power I derive from having nearly two dozen readers, I got invited to a special sneak preview of the movie Ant-Man nearly two years before its release. I mean, I love superhero movies, but Ant-Man is my personal favorite because of his "every man" aspect. In case you're unfamiliar with the plot, Hank Pym makes a scientific breakthrough in subatomic particles that enables him to communicate with insects, turning the mild-mannered biochemist into the feared Ant-Man.

Since I first heard about the project, my mind reeled at the possibilities that came with first-class writers like Jack Kirby and stars like Paul Rudd. Good news, readers: it is unbelievably suspenseful as well as moving and full of heart. I know the "Powers That Be" will be furious, but I can't resist: here are three of the countless scenes that had me literally glued to my seat.

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ANT-MAN is in New York City's Times Square when he hears a frantic cry.

TOURIST: HELP! HELP! AIEEEE!

ANT-MAN's eyes swerve to where the voice originated. There he sees a sad, thin man frantically trying to maneuver past a chubby woman smack-dab in the center of the sidewalk, hands swinging like wrecking balls in an effort to propel herself forward.

ANT-MAN: Don't worry, tourist! ANT-MAN is here to help! [THROUGH MEGAPHONE HANDS] ANTS OF THE WORLD, HEAR ME! I SUMMON YOU WITH POWERS DIVINE: MOVE THIS IRRITATING WOMAN!

Suddenly it's as if the entire world rumbles and shakes. Onlookers run for cover as a stream of ANTS pours out of every crack in the sidewalk.

ANT-MAN (cont'd): BEHOLD THE AWESOME POWER OF ANT-MAN!

Acting as one, nearly a thousand ANTS hoist the chubby woman onto their alitrunks and lift her in unison. She moves a sixteenth of an inch into the air, then as if on a conveyor belt she slides off the curb into the street. Onlookers burst into applause.

TOURIST: Wow. Ants really are strong. Hey, is Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. this way?

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After the ants learn of Dr. Pym's awesome powers, they call a meeting to discuss the implications.

ANT #1: Friends, we must leap at this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. As we all know, Dr. Pym can communicate with us -- but, more importantly, we can communicate with him. If we hope to share our thoughts on politics, the arts, and climate change with humans, it has to be through him, so we need to do whatever we can to win him over to our side.

ANT #2: Gosh, you're right! [PAUSE] I have an idea. Why don't we build him the biggest, most spectacular house anybody has ever seen? And we'll just give it to him, no strings attached. Surely he'll feel so indebted he'll do whatever we want.

ANT #1: That's a GREAT idea!

The ants gather all of the tribes -- field ants, acrobat ants, even odorous ants -- and numbering in the millions they work twenty-four hours a day. Finally, months later, the house is finished. An ambassadorial group approaches ANT-MAN in his dingy living room.

AMBASSADOR: Ant-Man, the ant community would like to extend a hand in friendship. Toward that end, we've built you a house hitherto unparalleled in splendor that we would like to give to you.

ANT-MAN is shocked speechless. He follows the ants through the city streets while his eyes dart around in search of his fabulous new mansion. Finally the ants stop in front of a hole in the ground.

AMBASSADOR: Here it is! Complete with chandeliers, mandible-hewn marble, balconies, balustrades and billiard rooms. And all of it is yours!

ANT-MAN looks down at the hole. It's literally the size of a quarter.

ANT-MAN: That's really, really kind of you, but I'm not sure I can fit.

AMBASSADOR [shocked]: Really? You can't compact your pliable head and thorax into one-thirtieth of its regular size to squeeze into cramped spaces?

ANT-MAN: No.

AMBASSADOR: Wow. Bummer. [PAUSE] Well, then. Would you like a little bit of cheese?

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And, of course, there's the breathtaking finale. I swear, I left the theater covered in goosebumps. If you're planning on seeing the movie, you might not want to read this part.

ANT-MAN and his human family are having a picnic. The sun is out, and the group are sprawled out on a plaid tablecloth under the spidery branches of a dappled chestnut tree.

GRANDMA (setting the table): ANT-MAN, you come here and help yourself. Honey, you've nothing but a skeleton! I made my famous fried chicken, green bean casserole, and a surprise treat just for you: my special potato salad, with little bits of celery and a dash of mustard, just the way you like it.

ANT-MAN's jaw drops open. He stands, holds his hands out to his sides, and points his face to the sky.

ANT-MAN: Ants of the world! Soldier ants, carpenter ants, fire ants. Leafcutter ants, honeypot ants, weaver ants. Fix your compound eyes on me and close your mandibles for one minute. Do NOT touch this potato salad! Do you hear me? Do not TOUCH this potato salad?

The ANTS shrug their scutellums.

ANTS (in unison): Oh, okay.


2 comments:

Yet Another Steve said...

All very well and good, but Ant-Man's first name should be Emmet, not Dean.

RomanHans said...

Wait, what? His alter ego is Hank Pym. His superhero name is Ant-Man. You only get two names. It's not like Superman is Clark Kent, Superman, and Kyle.

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