“For the times they are a-changin” has never rung more true for the entertainment industry. With the internet coming into the fold, and the economy pinching big budget productions, Bob Dylan hit it on the head so many years ago.
The internet is just starting to get used to introduce new entertainment. With last year’s success of “Dr. Horrible’s Sing-a-long Blog”, it looks like Crackle.com has taken a page from Joss Whedon’s book. First, they go and hire Ed Brubaker as the writer. Brubaker has written a bit for movies and TV, but is mostly know for his outstanding work in the comic books “Daredevil” and “Captain America.” Next in line is to cast some cult stars and new faces. Filling that role comes Lucy Lawless, Vail Bloom, Doug Jones, some cast members from sitcoms and crime dramas, and stars former stunt woman, Zoƒ« Bell.
“Angel of Death” is the about a mob assassin that has a moral crisis, caused by a head injury, and realizes that she should instead go after the people who hired her to cut off crime from the top. While sounding clichƒ©, Brubaker is a talented writer, and I hope that his script doesn’t come off as simple as it seems. The online mini-series is set to release 10 episodes, each around 10 minutes in length. They will kick things off on March 2nd with 3 episodes right off the bat. Then when they have all aired, a DVD will be released.
Zoƒ« Bell got her big break last year, starting in “Grindhouse: Death Proof”, and is reuniting with some people from her past. Bell was the main stunt woman for Lucy Lawless in “Xena: Warrior Princess” and now they reunite, this time on the screen together. Cult Movie actor Ted Raimi also makes an appearance, bringing in a third person from the “Xena” group.
Also coming out from behind the scenes is Doug Jones. Jones is mostly known for his acting in prosthetics in Movies like “Pan’s Labyrinth” and the “Hellboy”series. Whether or not he dons the make-up again is unknown, but he is certainly a diamond in the rough in this series.
This could be a big break if it ends up being successful. You have people like Jones and Bell who despite being on film, have spent most of the time with their faces hidden. Then Lawless and Raimi have had some decent TV careers, but still haven’t done a lot of meaningful stuff recently. And they you have Vail Bloom, who is new to the acting scene, and could use a jumpstart before she gets stuck in the soaps forever. Everyone has something to prove, and that might help push this mini-series past what it could normally be.
That said, I don’t have very high hopes for this, but would like to be wrong. Brubaker is a great writer, but the premise seems a bit boring. I like Doug Jones, but he normally ends up playing second fiddle, and I’m not sure if he can save a movie by himself. My biggest worry is the “Xena” cast. Sure they had their fans, but the series was never known for its acting, and casting a stuntwoman with little face time as your protagonist scares me. Everything is set up for a flop, but If the acting and script pull together, they certainly have an ace up their sleeve for any action or physical scene.