The Curator of Schlock #404 by Jeff Shuster

Morbius

It’s Morbin’ Time

There I was in the secret hideout of the Revenging Manta, the ninja vigilante of downtown Orlando. By secret hideout, I mean his one bedroom apartment. I went to take a shower, lathering up with Dove sensitive skin soap and massaging my follicles with Pert Plus, shampoo and conditioner in one. There was even a nice cotton bathroom waiting for me. I needed to brush my teeth and saw a lone, cherry red soft bristle toothbrush sitting in a cup by the sink. I figured what the ninja didn’t know couldn’t hurt him.

— To be continued. 

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This week’s movie is 2022’s Morbius from director Daniel Espinosa. Much like Venom, this movie features a Spider-Man villain with no Spider-Man. But he’s not really a bad guy; he’s kind of a tortured soul named Michael Morbius (Jared Leto). Born with a debilitating blood disease, Dr. Michael Morbius has spent his life trying to cure it, even studying to become the world’s preeminent expert on the subject. He even receives a prize from the King of Sweden for his invention of artificial blood which has saved more lives than penicillin.

It’s about this moment that I’m wondering why I should care about anything Marvel-related after they killed off Tony Stark!

I know.

I know.

This Sony Marvel universe is not the Disney Marvel universe though there are crossovers between the universes. How does that work? It’s all just a big ball of wibbly wobbly, timey wimey bullshit! (If I’m wrong, explain it to me in the comments, with diagrams and math problems if need be.)

Dr. Michael Morbius visits Costa Rica to capture some vampire bats to experiment with. I don’t think I’d experiment with vampire bats. That might turn me into a monster in the Sony Marvel universe. But I trust the good intentions of Dr. Michael Morbius as we see him comforting a sick little girl in the hospital who has the same genetic disorder as him. If only he could find a cure, not just for himself, but for all the poor afflicted children of the world. With the help of his love interest/colleague Dr. Martine Bancroft (Adria Arjona), the two set out for the high seas to conduct an illegal experiment in a secret laboratory on a freighter guarded by a dozen or so mercenaries. (I promise you I’ve never done that myself.)

Dr. Brancroft injects the serum into Morbiuss’s back, thus transforming him into a monster thirsting for human blood. This would be the part in the movie where we cut to Peter Parker trying to figure how he’s going to pay the rent this month, but there’s no Spider-Man here, Morbius makes short work of the mercenaries, draining their blood and slashing them to ribbons. That’s okay as these were mercs who probably deserved to die anyway. Morbius jumps ship leaving Dr. Bancroft to deal with the cops.

Oh, did I mention that Morbius has a childhood friend named Lucien played by Matt Smith? Like Morbius, Lucien also has a debilitating blood disease that keeps him on crutches. Morbius refuses to give Lucien the bat potion as he doesn’t want Lucien to share his vampiric existence. So Lucien just steals the bat potion when Morbius is incapacitated. Lucien’s first victim is a nurse and a single mother.

Boo!

That makes him a bad living vampire, unlike Morbius. 

Did you ever want to see Matt Smith dance shirtless to the tune of EKSE by Off the Meds? Then this is the movie for you.

Did you want to see Jared Leto zipping around New York City like a flying squirrel? Then this is the movie for you.

And be sure to watch that after credits scene, Let’s just say there may be a Sinister Six movie coming in the future. A Sinister Six movie with no Spider-Man. A Sinister Six movie where they’re bad, but not bad guys.

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Photo by Leslie Salas

Jeff Shuster (episode 47episode 102episode 124episode 131episode 284episode 441episode 442episode 443, episode 444episode 450, episode 477episode 491episode 492, episode 493episode 495episode 496episode 545episode 546episode 547episode 548, and episode 549) is an MFA graduate from the University of Central Florida.