Ant-Man has always been the Aquaman of Marvel Comics; the super hero that is almost in the big leagues, but just can’t quite be made to be taken seriously regardless of the level of effort employed. Superman! Batman! This dude who can talk to fish! It’s cool Aquaman, we’ll give you a call if we need some sushi.
Ant-Man was a genius scientist, he first invented a mechanism for shrinking down to miniscule size, and then realized that the only thing that could make this ability better was inventing a helmet which allowed him to speak to ants. That reminds me of the time I woke up in Mexico and invented a helmet to speak Spanish. It’s certainly the only reasonable thing to do.
The fact that Ant-Man is getting his own movie is perhaps a measure of just how rabidly Marvel has pursued the film route for its properties. Can’t you just see poor Dr. Hank Pym trying to stand up to Downey’s Tony Stark? “I’m a billionaire playboy philanthropist, and you have the ability to do a full body immersion exam of my prostate. Must be genetic, because your mom also had abilities in that area.”
The saving grace of this adaptation is that Marvel seems to have realized the inherent silliness of the character and instead of pushing their luck on taking it seriously, have brought in Edgar Wright of Pegg & Frost fame to make it happen. And despite the fact that the possible release is at least 2014 at this point, Wright brought test footage to Comic-Con in order to demonstrate the feasibility of the character, and emphasize that he’s bringing the comedy half of action-comedy to the feature.
Here’s a description of the footage, cut and pasted shamelessly from Don Kaye of Blastr since he was there and I was not, and the Internet has not seen fit to give use a shaky cell phone recording of the footage just yet:
He starts out tiny, staring through an air-conditioning vent at two guards down a long hall, then slips through the vent and runs at them in full attack mode. Rapidly expanding to full size to lay punches on them, then zooming to insect size as their counterpunches flail helplessly at the air, our hero makes short work of the guards and vanishes through the door. In one memorable moment, he shrinks and scrambles along the top of a gun barrel to give one of the guards a teeth-shattering knock in the mouth.