Unfortunate Furniture

CRUISE FUNDRAISER: 77/100 prints are sold and I only have until Dec 15th (2 days left!) to meet my goal of selling all 100. Help me get on a nerd boat and get some neat art for yourself in the process!

I doubt Joss Whedon is the type to gloat, but I bet he had to be at least a little bit smug when ABC cancelled Weird Desk in favor of S.H.I.E.L.D. “Yeah! Who’s NOT getting cancelled now? Who’s the big, fancy ginger that directed a BILLION DOLLAR MOVIE?!” is probably the type of internal monologue Whedon was running as he gave his deepest, heartfelt condolences to the Weird Desk team. He probably also sent them a fruit basket.

COMMENTERS: The reason cited for canceling development of Weird Desk (seriously… Weird. Desk. Weird Desk? What the entire fuck?) was plot overlap with S.H.I.E.L.D. Those overlapping plot elements could pertain to Weird Desk‘s theme of WEIRD cases coming across a certain DESK (OK, I JUST got that), and be investigated by a team of agents. So is SHIELD basically an X-Filesy, Fringey sort of affair? Do you want a “monster of the week” thing going on in S.H.I.E.L.D or do we want the overarching plot mixed with standalone adventures in an expansive universe and intense character development that we expect from Joss?

Hey hey! You can listen to an interview I did on the Clinically Inane podcast.

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  1. X-Files started off well with the single episode plots but by the end the story arc went so far up its own ass I think it became a mono-centipede circle.

  2. If I know anything about Whedon after watching over a decade's worth of his television and movie work in six years, it's that Joss will find a way to mix the concepts of standalone episodes with long-running plot points to develop a story that is meaty and filled with vitamins for your brain-space.

  3. Well, ABC *says* it was too much like "SHIELD". OTOH, Warner Bros stopped work on an "ElfQuest" movie because they thought "it was too much like 'The Hobbit'…". So, y'know, it might have been one of those things where the "resemblance" was entirely in the mind of someone who hadn't seen either source, just synopses. Sadly, we'll never know. And we'll never get to see just how weird the desk was, and whether it had a matching chair.

    • So…ElfQuest is not similar to The Hobbit? I know nothing about it other than vague memories of seeing comic covers in the 80's, but it seemed pretty similar to me. Is it not about plucky members of a diminutive fictional race going on a quest, set against the backdrop of a pseudo-medieval world of swords and magic?

      • ElfQuest is similar to The Hobbit in much the same way as Star Trek, Star Wars, Lexx, and Farscape are all about a multispecies group of people having adventures in space. I recommend you go and read – EQ is a most excellent experience. (And how many tales feature a group of elves who prepare for impending battle by holding an orgy?) 🙂

      • If those two are "too similar" and therefore ElfQuest can't be done, then I guess we don't need to make a single additional action/spy/thriller/horror/pick-your-own-genre movie again.

        Just as well; looks like they ran out of ideas anyways, judging by all the remakes.

      • Ok, ElfQuest is about a race of elves who are burned out of their home and have to journey to find a new one. Medieval is the wrong period too. The elves and humans are more tribal with no agriculture in sight. So off by a couple thousand years…While some Trolls, Humans, and Preservers make appearances, it's really all elves. Along the way they rediscover themselves, what elves are, and where they come from.

        On the other hand, The Hobbit is about a single hobbit going on an adventure with a group of people of other races, which is set in that typical fantasy medieval setting.

        Yeah, completely similar those two.

  4. "Weird Desk" is about a weird desk? Yeah, and before "X-Files" debuted some people thought it was about a dangerous file cabinet.

    Still, for every organization like "SHIELD", there has to be at least one bureaucrat handling the inevitable paperwork. (The liability claims after "Avengers Assemble" would've kept the home office working overtime for weeks) Come to think of it, "Archer" does some of that, so "Weird Desk" could probably only be done right as a half-hour sitcom.

    My own boring office work history included accounting duties at a financial firm while its Junk Bond investments were crashing and working out billing for major environmental remediation work (oddly, we did not bill per-person-not-poisoned though we should have). Both of those had a few real-life situations funnier than "The Office" when it was good, so I can imagine the hilarity of a comedic "Weird Desk", even if the desk itself looks IKEA-generic.

    • On that note does anyone remember 'Damage Control'? It was a comic about a group of 'super heroes' that cleaned up after the real super heroes beat the crap out of whatever villian or after mayhem had ensued/

      • Not only that, their CEO was responsible for the whole "Superhero Civil War" mess – he'd been feeding Mutant Growth Hormone to the explodey villain (whose name escapes me) so that any fights with him would create *bigger* messes for Damage Control to charge to clean up. Nice guy. I think he might have been Dick Cheney's role model.

        • what was his name? I hope it's not the same guy as the CEO of Damage Control from the Ultimate Spider-Man cartoon, because that guy looks like Dwayne McDuffie

          • I don't quite remember his name, but he ended up with Wolverine's claws through his head (in silhouette of course). Then (and I wish I was making this up) he got better. And sued Wolverine for assault with a deadly weapon and battery.

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