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DeMarco Movie Review: My Spy (2020)

Greg DeMarco ventures outside of wrestling with his review of Dave Batista’s unique buddy comedy, My Spy!



My Spy 2020 Dave Bautista Chairshot Edit

Greg DeMarco ventures outside of wrestling with his review of Dave Batista’s unique buddy comedy, My Spy!

So as you obviously know, we’re stuck in the world of COVID-19, and the coronavirus has taken away many of our fun outings, including going to the movies! While I can still sneak into CrossFit (and I am violating Rule #1 right now), I haven’t been to the movies in far too long.

Many movies have been delayed due to the theaters being closed during the pandemic, but a few (including Trolls World Tour) have been released via streaming/on-demand. That plan was also used for My Spy, which was acquired by Amazon and released via Prime Video as an Amazon Original.

So last weekend I picked up some movie theater popcorn from my local Harkins Theater, fired up the ol’ Amazon Prime, and checked out My Spy with the family. And I gotta say, I thoroughly enjoyed it.

My Spy (2020)

If you haven’t seen My Spy, here is a spoilerific synopsis. And don’t worry about the spoilers, I mean it’s a family friendly comedy. You can figure out what’s gonna happen. Except the gay turncoats. And the bad ass momma move at the end. But those are small moments that only add to this really fun, cute film.

Big Dave Bautista, formerly a 6-time world champion in WWE, 2-time Royal Rumble winner, and 2020 Hall Of Famer (I am guessing it still counts lol), stars as JJ, a newer CIA operative who was formerly a Special Forces soldier in the US Army. His first mission appears to be successful, as he gets out alive and blows a lot of shit up. But he seemingly kills all of the important people in the process.

JJ is sent off on a “babysitting assignment” by boss David Kim, played by Ken Jeong (it’s every Ken Jeong role you’ve ever seen lol), and his partnered up with Bobbi, quirky tech/hacker who also happens to hero worship JJ. The assignment is in Chicago, where they have to watch Kate, the widow of David Marquez, and her 9-year old daughter Sophie. David Marquez was the brother of Victor Marquez, French arms dealer in search of nuclear bomb plans that he believes Kate is somehow in possession of.

JJ and Bobbi move into the same apartment building (and same floor) as Kate and Sophie, installing surveillance cameras so they can work on their assignment (which JJ sees as an insult, by the way). Sophie proves to be too smart for them, finding one of their cameras and tracing it back to the CIA, geolocating the IP address and making her way into their apartment.

Sophie uses this to blackmail JJ into becoming part of her life, which includes coming to her school, ice skating, a date with her mother, and more. This is also where we meet Carlos and mute Todd, the gay couple who also lives on the floor. They provide the perfect comedic interlude, but are also important later.

JJ is overtly socially awkward, including a moment where he embraces his inner Drax and tells Kate that the dinner she cooked is terrible. Kim discovers that JJ has gotten in too deep, and pulls he and Bobbi off of the assignment. Obviously, the movie can’t end here.

Victor Marquez eventually fakes his own death (in front of Kim and fellow CIA agent Christina), travels to Chicago to locate the plans (which are in the collar of Kate & Sophie’s pet), encountering JJ, Sophie, and Kate, only to have Carlos and Todd to burst in and reveal themselves as evil independent contractors sent ti disrupt this and obtain the plans themselves (but they are indeed still a couple). Bobbi predictably tries to intervene using JJ’s firearms, and predictably fails.

Victor eventually kidnaps Sophie (who obtained and hid the plans in the process) and heads off to an airfield, where JJ tries to rescue her. It’s Kate who eventually comes to the rescue, clubbing Victor before he can shoot them. JJ goes all Big Dave and pushes the plans off of a cliff, sending Victor plummeting to his death.

As a result of all this, JJ and now affirmed partner Bobbi (who JJ got a raise) are permanently assigned to Chicago, and JJ moves in with Kate and Sophie to live happily ever after.


Here are the critical responses to My Spy:

  • Rotten Tomatoes critics score: 48%
  • Rotten Tomatoes audience score: 66%
  • Metacritic Metascore weighted average: 46%
  • IMDB user score 6.3 out of 10

If you know me, you know I don’t give two shits about what movie critics think. I use trailers, cast members, writers, and directors to decide if I want to see a movie, and I am a sucker for sequels, trilogies, etc. Action movie? I’m in. Heist movie? SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY.

I chose to watch My Spy, and with that choice comes the knowledge of what this movie is! It’s the “Action Star meets Cute Kid” formula, where the kid has a profound impact on the action star, and thus the story. The action star does tend to fall in love with the kid’s single parent, and that expectedly happens here. Batista does a solid job playing JJ, but it’s Chloe Coleman’s Sophie that steals the show. And that’s the way it should be.

My Spy is a funny, endearing, cute, fluffy family comedy that fills the role it’s supposed to fill. A fun little movie that makes you smile. If you go into it with the right expectations, you’ll be fine.

DeMarco’s Rating: 3.5/5 (using the Bandwagon Nerds rating scale)

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Bandwagon Nerds

Bandwagon Nerds #114: Return of the Reverend



Bandwagon Nerds
Bandwagon Nerds #114: Return of the Reverend

The Reverend Rey Cash returns to the Bandwagon just in time to discuss all of the latest Marvel Cinematic Universe news and rumors surrounding the upcoming Dr. Strange, Fantastic Four, and Black Panther Films! Patrick figures out why Dave doesn’t care for The Witcher season 2 in the Bandwagon’s review of season two, episode 5.  And finally, are there problems between Disney and Pixar brewing?

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Andrew’s Judgmental Album Reviews: Eliminator – Ancient Light (2022)

YO! The JAR tends to like the New Wave of British Heavy Metal sound. This band is inspired by that 80s sound and it shines brightly! Check it out!



YO! The JAR tends to like the New Wave of British Heavy Metal sound. This band is inspired by that 80s sound and it shines brightly! Check it out!

Now this is not exactly a unique band name since I’m aware of at least two other “Eliminators”, but this one is from England and been around for about a decade. Similarly as to the first review of 2022, I was clicking around looking for something that struck my interest early on in this new year.

They are from England and stick in that Iron Maiden/Judas Priest New Wave of British Heavy Metal sound. I’m interested to see if they stick in the classic Heavy Metal sound, or if they put their own spin on it. Let’s get to the album!

  • Artist: Eliminator
  • Album: Ancient Light (2022)
  • Label: Dissonance Productions
  • Total Track Time: 50:43

Arrival it definitely strikes you in the face with that Iron Maiden kind of vibe. But the fun this about halfway through, they solo out the bass to lead into a great dueling guitar instrumental section. It doesn’t have the Maiden Gallop but it feels more like old Kill ‘Em All Metallica in the approach to how they put that together. Really rocking opening song with great guitar parts. Silent Stone opens with a very prominent Bassline complimented with just a quick guitar flair and then into more of that Maiden-esque sound. I really appreciate that the dual guitar parts are more harmonic and less lead trades. They complement each other very well and the rhythm section ties it all together beautifully. So far these first two songs feel like they were ripped out of time from Iron Maiden’s cutting room floor, but that’s not really an insult; because I’m referring to good Maiden. Like Somewhere in Time, No Prayer for the Dying, Fear of the Dark; that era. So not the 80s peak, but still notable Maiden.

Ancient Light starts a little more erratic and then goes into a slower ballad like delivery before the guitars start to drive the tone and tempo back up to the established energy level of the album. While the instrumentation really does stay in league with the band I keep referencing, the vocal tone the singer takes feels more like Geoff Tate from Queensryche until we get to a breakdown and he turns up the head voice and vocal fry usage like 80s Bruce Dickinson. Goddess of Life is the first song to really utilize that Maiden Gallop in the instrumentation. It does flip the arrangement from the last song where it starts off heavy and galloping and then really slows down to this epic moment when the guitars kick in for their duel and reignite the tempo. Only real complaint is they stay in that gallop for so much of the song, the tempo change is the only really intriguing part of the song, and the rest almost becomes a metronome boring me just a little bit. The Sculptor of the Stone Lady well they got their naming conventions from either Iron Maiden or Nightwish. So this is at least very on brand. One of my favorite aspects of these first few songs, is how audible the basslines are. They keep things moving, lock really well with the drum for the rhythm section and too often do bass parts get lost in the mix (I’m looking at you And Justice for All). This song also has a little flamenco guitar break similar to Marty Friedman’s in Holy Wars. The difference is the break actually bridges into a verse with the adjusted tempo, they come out and adjust the tempo again to the swaying almost rock anthem sounding instrumentation. I’m not gonna lie, all of the small changes really had me feeling some Dream Theater vibes, but it was all done really well. They’re just this great building flourish to one final line and then the song ends after a little more noodling. Damn fun song.

Lord of Sleep, Dreammaster someone call Dokken, we need the Dream Warriors! Not really a lot of places to go with breaking this down, the lyrics play in this high fantasy section, so it’s cool and it has many of the similar elements from previous songs with tempo changes, guitar duel and stays driving but the drummer does a much better job with fills to keep the song engaging and not hypnotizing. The Library immediately, I got some King Diamond vibes. From the simple yet ominous title to a quicker opening before steering back into the ominous haunted feeling. But the guitar tone while still very Maiden, reminds me more of like a Welcome Home. And when it picks back up about 2/3rds of the way through the song, again that Maiden/Diamond mixture really just resonates with me. It’s a well put together song and paints great imagery. Mercy definitely using much more vocal fry technique, this sounds more like later 90s Dickinson where it’s going for a heavier tone instead of the grandiose epic vibe. While not bad, the lyrics not being overly enunciated for the sake of using fry and the instrumentation not being anything creative, it falls into that ‘kinda boring’ vein.

Foreverless so a made up word is either going to be a poignant song, or irritating. While it takes about 50 seconds for the lyrics to kick in, it switches things up 2 or 3 times and then goes into a straight Iron Maiden epic sound. We mean like more current Maiden, Benjamin Breeg comes to mind. But they keep the rhythm rocking, the drum crashes and fills mixed with a proper amount of falsetto and fry actually do drive this song well. It’s pretty cool when we get about halfway to a small guitar solo before the story of the song switches to more of the Maiden gallop and what could be interpreted as a glorious resolution. The Nightmare of Aeon let’s see if they are using Aeon to mean life or if they’re just really big fans of Final Fantasy 10. This takes a demonic almost approach, with church bells, a trudging tempo and what sounds like drowned out choral backing vocals. So it’s really hammering down on the dark and foreboding vibe. We get a nearly listless feeling from the guitar solo as it bridges the verses together. We go from an implied spiral to slowly picking up steam back into the Maiden-esque gallop and power, even with an audible fret slide. Hitting the last line if “Nightmare of aeon…” as the song just fades is a nice touch.

So I’ve seen a couple comments and I can’t help but agree; that this album is what Senjutsu could have been. We get the Iron Maiden album we deserved last year. Eliminator does a great job at not dragging on too long, even songs that had that longer epic feel, quickly came to fruition with the longest song being Foreverless at 6:31. That may not sound short, but when current Maiden likes 9+ minute songs…6 and change is short as hell. But what does this all mean? The album is really damn good. I may have started to get a little bored at times, but nothing was egregious or terrible.

With all that said, if you like Iron Maiden you’ll love this band. Give it a spin!


Final Judgment: 8.1/10

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