Marvels Phase 4 Flaw: the multiverse MUST be comedic or contained

Igor came out today and said loki and secret invasion are only definite 2023 shows even though ironheart is done filming. Looks like they may go the bat woman route and just can the stuff that will just lose money. Not a suprise imo

They said a while ago that they were going to slow the frequency of releases. I can't really see them canning anything already filmed. Marvel is too well planned, with everything fitting together. My guess is they'll just push things back, the stuff with Bat Woman was a pretty unique situation. I could be wrong though.

Not a bad move given last year felt like there was too much content and that the quality was starting to suffer.
 

log in or register to remove this ad

Mirtek

Hero
And they all feel like a coherent, building storyline that hangs together well even when some of the plotlines of the individual movies tend to get ignored in the ensemble pieces.

Every Marvel movie or TV series since Endgame just hasn't had that glue, that sense of a unified purpose or plan,
This.

I already voiced this as my main gripe and just been told "well, it's the same with the comics". Guess that's one of the reasons I don't read the comics.

"But you can't lead any new introduction with a 'what did they do back when [...]?' and 'why didn't they think about that to solve [...]?'"

I say, why not? They are a multi billion dollar franchise. Sure they can afford to hire a couple people getting paid a $100k a year to deal with exactly that.

"But that stifles creativity"

Well, it restricts it to a certain degree. But that's just what you get when playing in a shared sandbox. You'll have to show consideration for what anyone else is doing and not accidentally hit them with your shovel or knock over the sand castle they build first because you just want to use that space.
 

bloodtide

Legend
I agree the MCU is going way down hill.

I get the common folk don't care about CGI spam alien worlds. Oh No Fictinatioalara is going to be destroied? Well, who cares? You see this is Star Trek when the aliens always have to attack Earth, and maybe worse in Doctor Who where the aliens always attack Earth.

Kang was a horrible villain: the "conquer"? Yea right, could he even win a game of checkers?

The comedy is getting too much. The MCU mixed comedy into things so perfectly in phases 1-3: not too much and keep things serous. It's a delicate balance, and not all writers can do it.
 

But anything else just doesn’t work.
See here's the problem.

A middle way absolutely could work. James Gunn has proven this time after time after time. He's nailed in different settings with different characters. He's had his cake and eaten it. Which is why he's now King of the DCEU. But the main thing is, he proves your blanket assertion wrong. It is technically possible to go a middle way and win.

The trouble: nobody else is James Gunn.

(I mean, probably someone else is. Jessica Gao might be - not yet but she's on the way imo. But certainly 95% of Marvel writers aren't.)

And the secret to the middle way is simple - make the audience care about the characters and what they want, not bollocks like "SAVE EARTH!". But that's relatively hard for most writers to do. They like to write plot-heavy drivel full of kiss-off lines, rather than really building up characters you actually have feelings (positive or negative) about.

And yeah, expecting us to care about the destruction of Fictionalia just doesn't work unless we care about the characters, and they care.
 

Mercurius

Legend
Of the eight (I think) Phase 4-5 films, I've only seen two. I'm just bored. 4-5 all seem like filler, and I probably won't get back on the train until Fantastic Four and the lead up to Secret Wars.
 

nevin

Hero
Minor Spoiler warning for Ant Man 3.

The latest Ant Man movie is…not good. I may make my own thread about that movie in the future. But it points to a more fundamental problem with marvels phase 4…the multiverse is just too big.

We humans are a tribal lot. We care about our families a lot, our country a decent amount, and our planet…some. But the entire multiverse is just too damn big to care about.

Sure avid comic book fans have been cutting their teeth on multiversal threats for decades, but the average movie watcher just doesn’t give a damn. Cassie in the latest ant man is begging her father to care about the quantum realm…but really she’s begging us to.

And I don’t…I don’t give a damn.

CONTAINMENT
Infinity war and endgame may have affected the entire universe, but the movie was grounded on earth. We saw the effects of the snap, on earth. The final battle…on earth. Generally when scenes were in other worlds, they involved major character defining moments (black widows death, Thanos sacrificing his daughter, star lord realizing he would kill gamora to save her from her father), or just awesome battles…after which the plot moved back to earth.

While the movies grew in scope, they were still grounded in either the characters we care about, or the world we care about.

Ant man 3 is a “drama” with no dramatic stakes, because it’s about people and places I just don’t care about.

COMEDIC
Thor Ragnorok was a great movie because it was total comedy, and comedies can simply get away with things dramas can’t. The plot doesn’t have to 100% make sense, I don’t need that same dramatic grounding, I just want to laugh and have a zany time.

So yeah Thor went to places and met with people I honestly don’t care about it…but I didn’t need to. I was there to laugh, and that’s what the movie did. The zany worlds were there for humor, and it did it’s job well.

Now love and thunder wasn’t a great movie, and I’d argue it’s because they tried to stick drama into my comedy. Talking about the big C, having a pretty serious villain in the god butcher…it’s those dramatic elements that start to pull the movie bsck down…and now suddenly all those plot holes and other elements start to matter again.


MARVEL NEEDS TO CHOOSE
If marvel is going to keep going with the multiverse, then it needs to choose. You can go total comedy, give me a zany adventure in the multiverse, no big stakes just raw run. That’s fine. You can go dramatic with a grounded adventure on earth, that while involves the multiverse is still ultimately happening in my back yard. That’s fine too.

But anything else just doesn’t work. Ant man 3 as a movie just doesn’t work well, and I feel like the problem has just gotten worse for marvel over time. The multiverse is too big to be taken seriously, so either make it smaller, or make it funny.

The other option is the slow death of the MCU
Marvel is suffering from being addicted to the universe being at stake almost everytime. If the universe is at stake everytime a villain shows up then saving it is just a day job and becomes boring.
 

nevin

Hero
See here's the problem.

A middle way absolutely could work. James Gunn has proven this time after time after time. He's nailed in different settings with different characters. He's had his cake and eaten it. Which is why he's now King of the DCEU. But the main thing is, he proves your blanket assertion wrong. It is technically possible to go a middle way and win.

The trouble: nobody else is James Gunn.

(I mean, probably someone else is. Jessica Gao might be - not yet but she's on the way imo. But certainly 95% of Marvel writers aren't.)

And the secret to the middle way is simple - make the audience care about the characters and what they want, not bollocks like "SAVE EARTH!". But that's relatively hard for most writers to do. They like to write plot-heavy drivel full of kiss-off lines, rather than really building up characters you actually have feelings (positive or negative) about.

And yeah, expecting us to care about the destruction of Fictionalia just doesn't work unless we care about the characters, and they care

James Gunn hasn't been that successful outside of Gardians of the Galaxy. The last suicide squad wasn't really aimed at the masses. It was a mush of over the top BS that buried it for a lot of people. This is also the guy that recently told us that yes making superman a darker character just didn't work with the general audience and it was a mistake so he's giving us a Darker Supergirl. I don't have any hope for either comic universe for the next decade or so. I think both will have to blow thier strategies completly up before they'll accept they might be flawed.
 

Argyle King

Legend
I think bringing the Multiverse (and "Secret Wars") into the cinematic universe has the same problems that it eventually developed in the comic books: it leads to lazy writing; it removes tangible stakes.

There's rarely a sense of urgency or teeth to a problem.

[Character] didn't [die/lose/get hurt] because it was really just someone pretending to be [character].

OR

[Character] did [die/lose/get hurt], but that is fine because we have 100 other variants.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Supporter
[Character] didn't [die/lose/get hurt] because it was really just someone pretending to be [character].

OR

[Character] did [die/lose/get hurt], but that is fine because we have 100 other variants.

You are basing the stakes only on the character.

In upcoming Secret Invasion series Nick Fury will be fighting off a takeover by Skrulls. Whether Fury survives is a question, sure. But there's something bigger than his survival at stake.
 

billd91

Not your screen monkey (he/him) 🇺🇦🇵🇸🏳️‍⚧️
Ant-Man and Wasp: Quantumania was, I thought, OK. It wasn't great. It was a bit jarring the way it handled the Quantum Realm as the Microverse compared to prior use in multiple movies. And it lacked some of the chemistry of the earlier Ant-Man-based movies (lacking his ex-con buddies, his ex-wife, and the comedy both relationships bring).

But one thing Quantumania is also suffering from is heightened expectations of the MCU - both in its viewers and in its writers. It lives in a space that has to do a lot more heavy lifting than most of the other MCU early entries that were leading up to The Avengers (with bare hints of a very slow burn toward something more beyond that). Quantumania is already incorporating our new BBEG and his menace to the universe (sorry) multi-verse and having to do so in 2 hours compared to Loki's more extended TV series format. So the ambition and stakes and speed are a lot higher... and for an Ant-Man movie. Not Thor or Iron Man or any other more powerful or plot driving hero or team. Ant-Man, Wasp, Cassie, and the Pyms.
 

Voidrunner's Codex

Remove ads

Top