One Thing I Love Today: Peggy Carter's second season is one of Marvel's best moments
Credit: ABC/Marvel Studios

One Thing I Love Today: Peggy Carter's second season is one of Marvel's best moments

Can the movies come up with some female heroes this fully realized? And pronto?

One Thing I Love Today is a daily column dedicated to putting a spotlight on some pop culture item worth your attention. After all, there's enough snark out there. Why not start every day with one quick shotgun blast of positivity?

First of all, I'm only human.

Yes, when I saw Captain America: The First Avenger, part of the reason I thought Hayley Atwell was delightful is because she's a no-joke '40s-style bombshell, funny and pretty and architecturally impressive. And her role in the film is solid, well-written and part of the action, not just window dressing. When Captain America makes his sacrifice at the end of the film, it feels like it's an actual sacrifice. He's giving up someone special and a chance at normal human happiness.

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Karen Gillan's feeling blue on the set of 'Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2'
Credit: Marvel Studios

Karen Gillan's feeling blue on the set of 'Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2'

One of Marvel's most potential-filled villains is back

One of the highlights of my professional life so far was my experience with Masters Of Horror, and part of what made that so special was having KNB FX involved with the show on the make-up side of things. Howard Berger was our point person on season one, and Greg Nicotero was the point person on season two, and in both cases, it was awesome working with them. Watching them take our ideas from words on a page to designs on paper to actual working living things on the set was a huge thrill, especially for someone who grew up reading Fangoria. I've stayed friends with Derek Mears, who wore the suit as one of our monsters, and was just fascinated by the two days he was working with us.

By far, the greatest place I've ever been for a Halloween party was Rick Baker's Glendale studios, which doubled as a gallery as you can see in the video I embedded for fun above this story.

Out of all the film sets I've been on over the years, there are specific gags or moments that stand out, and I can honestly say that, as a life-long fan of prosthetic make-ups, probably the most overall impressive make-up I've seen in person was Karen Gillan as Nebula in the original Guardians Of The Galaxy.

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One Thing I Love Today: Was the second season of 'Fargo' the best movie of 2015?
Credit: FX Networks

One Thing I Love Today: Was the second season of 'Fargo' the best movie of 2015?

We're pretty sure the answer is 'yes'

One Thing I Love Today is a daily column dedicated to putting a spotlight on some pop culture item worth your attention. After all, there's enough snark out there. Why not start every day with one quick shotgun blast of positivity?

Noah Hawley is a True Believer.

There is no reason whatsoever that a television show based on Fargo should work, but after finishing season two of the FX series, I am blown away by what he's accomplished and by the sheer force of his love for Joel and Ethan Coen.

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Tye Sheridan calls next game with Spielberg for 'Ready Player One'
Credit: 20th Century Fox

Tye Sheridan calls next game with Spielberg for 'Ready Player One'

Oh, my god, I think they're actually going to make this

Steven Spielberg has found his player for Ready Player One.

Tye Sheridan makes perfect sense for the role, and he's certainly earned his bona fides, working hard over the last few years. Cast by no less than Terrence Malick in Tree Of Life, he's since wracked up a solid filmography of films like Joe, The Stanford Prison Experiment, and his work in Mud alone would make him worth putting at the top of every casting list for films looking for actors of a certain age.

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Lin-Manuel Miranda joining 'Mary Poppins 2' seems practically perfect in every way
Credit: Walt Disney Company

Lin-Manuel Miranda joining 'Mary Poppins 2' seems practically perfect in every way

Please make this happen, Disney. Please?

When you're talking about Hollywood songwriting history, Robert B. Sherman and Richard M. Sherman are as close to royalty as you get.

Just walking through any Disney park on the planet, you are surrounded almost continuously by their music, whether it's the omnipresent "It's A Small World" or the fiendishly infectious "The Tiki, Tiki, Tiki Room" or the songs from the various films they contributed to like "I Wanna Be Like You" or "Trust In Me" from The Jungle Book. By far, though, their most lasting and memorable contributions to the Disney legacy came with their work on Mary Poppins.

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One Thing I Love Today: Gerry Duggan's 'Chewbacca' is pure 'Star Wars' bliss
Credit: Lucasfilm/Marvel Comics

One Thing I Love Today: Gerry Duggan's 'Chewbacca' is pure 'Star Wars' bliss

One Thing I Love Today is a daily column dedicated to putting a spotlight on some pop culture item worth your attention. After all, there's enough snark out there. Why not start every day with one quick shotgun blast of positivity?

Are you still basking in the afterglow of Deadpool?

One of the many people you'd probably want to say thank you to is Gerry Duggan, as he's been writing the character in various titles for a while now, both with Brian Posehn and without him. He's become a prolific writer for Marvel Comics overall, and he's a very good storyteller with a wicked sense of humor.

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Guillermo Del Toro calls Steve DeKnight a 'great choice' for 'Pacific Rim 2'
Credit: Legendary Pictures/Warner Bros

Guillermo Del Toro calls Steve DeKnight a 'great choice' for 'Pacific Rim 2'

This next film is meant to take us beyond the first film's scope

"We had a fantastic meeting of the minds with [Steven] DeKnight."

That's what Guillermo Del Toro had to say when I reached out to him tonight. Del Toro's creative process is one of the most immersive I've ever seen. Last year, I visited the current incarnation of Bleak House, which is an entire house-sized combination museum/collection/art studio, filled with books and original wax-sculptures and hidden rooms and original framed artwork and a place where he can put illustrators and designers together to help spitball ideas.

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Wait, Steve Martin performed a stand-up set? How is this not front page news?!
Credit: Steve Martin

Wait, Steve Martin performed a stand-up set? How is this not front page news?!

For fans of the art form, this is one of those impossible moments, but it happened

Oh, wow. I'm winding down my work day, clicking around a few headlines, some new, some a few days older, and then I open a story, start reading, and now I'm filled with a distinct combination of both intense, almost crippling envy for Jesse David Fox, and also a sudden, unexpected, emotional exhilaration.

Steve Martin performed stand-up at the Beacon Theater in New York almost a week ago.

How was this not front page news everywhere the next day? Steve Martin onstage doing live comedy? Not a show like his bluegrass tours but an actual short stand-up set? I assume I was too busy dealing with a gnarly root canal to pay attention to anything else actually happening in the world, and of all the things I miss, I miss the news that Steve Martin did actual stand-up comedy.

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Twenty years ago, 'Trainspotting' was a blast of pure punk energy
Credit: Miramax

Twenty years ago, 'Trainspotting' was a blast of pure punk energy

Sometimes, everything just plain works

When I got out of bed today, I moved a soundtrack from my computer to my iPod, and when I got in the car to drive to work, I cranked up Iggy Pop's "Lust For Life" for the first time in a while.

As soon as I did, I was hit with a flash of Ewan McGregor, tearing ass down the street, that smile on his face, and I got a full Proustian out-of-body flashback to being in the theater with my friends Pete and Scott and positively levitating out of my chair at the energy of the thing. We were all Danny Boyle fans already from Shallow Grave, but nothing prepared us for Trainspotting. It was one of those seismic movie moments, and it seems impossible to me that it's already been 20 years since it came out.

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Watch visual effects evolve from 'Wings' to 'Interstellar' in ten minutes
Credit: MGM/UA Home Video

Watch visual effects evolve from 'Wings' to 'Interstellar' in ten minutes

Hey, look! That's what 'Star Wars' actually looked like!

People today take visual effects for granted, and in some ways, that's a huge compliment to the remarkable artists who continue to push one of the most magical parts of filmmaking forward, year after year.

What I love most about visual effects is, oddly, not the way it has opened up the types of stories that can be told on film. It's the way the techniques have evolved, and the way even now people mix the physical, the digital, the optical in order to find the best way to sell a particular illusion.

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