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23rd November 2015

Feature: Should we boycott Marvel?

With increasing numbers of people criticising the quality of the films, are the superhero movies by Marvel worth or time?

Should we stop giving the MCU our money?

This comic book based franchise effortlessly trumps box office records with each release, but don’t be fooled, Marvel Studios is no hero. What they’ve done since the early 2000s is capitalise on a few film successes and create an age of superhero films. In doing so, they’ve emptied out your pockets and ruined mainstream cinema. So much money goes into these films on production cost and endless advertisements that any competition will have a tough time getting funding in Hollywood, and due to the compliant swarms that keep eating this stuff up, they just repeat the process.

The new Avengers film, Age of Ultron, is a great specimen to highlight the flaws of Marvel. Little seems to go into writing the script—if not a cheesy joke, then characters are found with underwhelming lines. This does nothing to build suspense or make me, a member of the audience, care for these obnoxious heroes. When Marvel films take the approach of being self-aware and the actors in them don’t take the script too seriously (as was the case in Guardians of the Galaxy), this can produce the outliers in what are mainly bad films.

Marvel seems to have a problem with making action look gripping or anything of consequence. With entire cities being wiped off of the face of the planet and the bad guys outnumbering our heroes by about a hundred to one, it’s actually an achievement of how poorly executed Marvel’s action sequences are. It’s not that they’re predictable, it’s that the events don’t seem to carry much effect. Only one good guy was shown to have died in this new Avengers film, and he was bad for most of it!

“But everyone loves them!” Popular doesn’t mean that they’re good in any shape or form. Case in point, One Direction are currently the bestselling artists in the world. Their music must be revolutionary then, right? They’ve just cornered a market and stayed there due to their abundance of money and willing followers.

There’s an easy way to stop this plague of superhero flop—please boycott and show Marvel we’re no longer accepting films that treats us like idiots.


Or should we just accept them as a bit of fun?

No matter how casual your interest in cinema may be, the influx of Marvel films and the development of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) during the last decade have been ubiquitous. Whilst superhero films may have become a little oversaturated in the last few years, the popularisation and rejuvenation of their much-loved comic book source material is something we ought to embrace, not least because Marvel’s cinematic outputs are generally hugely enjoyable and amusing. Despite criticism for their formulaic structure, even the most well-versed film fans surely need the opportunity to let off steam, and simply enjoy a high-octane superhero adventure, without any strings attached, every once in a while.

With Marvel recently expanding their repertoire to Netflix, they continue to experiment and adapt to a wider audience, veering away from their family-friendly reputation with the critically-acclaimed Netflix original series Daredevil, as well as the hotly-anticipated noir detective drama, Jessica Jones. Their recent and upcoming outputs have also taken steps to include a far more diverse and representative range of characters than ever before. Deadpool director Tim Miller revealed, when discussing the matter in a recent interview, that the titular character within the film is pansexual. Indeed, Marvel has made strides in recent years to provide stimulating and engaging characters with an appeal that transcends both age and gender, generally receiving encouraging responses from fans and critics alike in the process.

It’s easy to be critical of corporations like Marvel, which produce movies for the masses, the same could easily be said of its rival companies, such as Disney—who are just as prolific and occasionally inconsistent. Marvel films are often just simply entertaining to watch, there’s no reason why such an appealing branch of blockbusters shouldn’t have its place on the silver screen. Indeed, it has become increasingly common to see Marvel films appearing amongst the list of Academy Award nominees each year. Admittedly they don’t fall on the same scale as other films which have more thematic depth and artistic ingenuity. But we ought not to judge so harshly and analytically, and simply take Marvel for what it is: Fun!

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