The Marvel Cinematic Universes Biggest Missteps to Date
Iron Fist is here! And it’s…disappointing. One thing that has been mentioned around the internet is how this is the first noticeable misstep for the MCU as to date they’ve been delivering consistently excellent content starting with Iron Man. That is not exactly true…the MCU have had a couple of blunders on their record already. Let’s reflect on that.
‘THOR: THE DARK WORLD’ WAS FILLER
The release of Thor revealed to everyone that Marvel new what they were doing. They had the formula worked out and had a goal in mind. Not many people would have bet on it being a success but it was awesome. Following The Avengers they pretty much had us on board for whatever they had planned next. The Dark World was a solid film even though some consider it the biggest failure in the series. Good action, good effects and good Loki. On it’s own it’s a good sequel, but in the grand scheme of things it does feel like filler. It doesn’t raise the stakes and it doesn’t further the story. They also had a seriously underused villain in Christopher Eccleston’s Malekith. We still have high hopes for Ragnorak though.
BLACK WIDOW SOLO MOVIE
Or more to the point: the lack of one. They first spoke about this spin-off in 2014 and nothing definitive has happened. She’s one of the longest running characters in the series and one of the most popular yet she hasn’t gotten a story dedicated to her. Fans have made it clear they want this to happen, or at least an adventure with Hawkeye as a sidekick. A full-on espionage style Netflix series is what we really want.
‘THE AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON’ WAS MARKETED WRONG
By and large the second big team up was a let down. It wasn’t bad…it was crazy good fun…but there were some major problems. Firstly they got caught up in laying the ground work for the next stage of films with Thor wandering off to have a bath for no clear reason. Secondly, and more obviously, the marketing wasn’t reflective of the final product. It looked to put the team at serious risk of death but the film never made us feel that level of danger (even though one of them did die). Ultron himself was promoted as a very menacing villain, someone who was genuinely scary. In reality he was goofy. Advertise what you’ve got, people.
‘IRON MAN 2’ WAS A SHAMBLES
After launching the franchise in 2008 Iron Man almost sunk it by making every mistake a sequel can make. They tried to out-do the original by jamming in more characters than they knew what to do with, added many pointless sub-plots in lieu of creating a real threat and chucked in some hitherto unmentioned and nonsensical additions to the backstory. What they hell was that circuit board thing on his neck and why did it matter? The good parts – the action, the introductions of Black Widow and War Machine – were super good, but the story and character work was a shambles.
AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D.
The biggest problem with this television outing is how poorly it’s been treated by the MCU. It’s like an unwanted runt of a litter that gets abandoned by the parents with the hope that it’ll die on it’s own. Without any solid ties to the MCU it was left feeling like a pretender who had to be careful not to step on any toes. Although it has a great cast of actors and some interesting ideas leading up to the reveal of the Inhumans it has not yet fully come into it’s own.
‘THE INCREDIBLE HULK’ WAS FLAT AND DULL
Second out of the gate was the forgettable The Incredible Hulk, casting Edward Norton as Bruce Banner and casting a distinctly Bourne inspired tone to the early scenes. At this point they were still pinning down the Marvel formula and didn’t quite know how to handle this character. The film wound up feeling pretty generic.
EVERY SINGLE VIDEO GAME SUCKS
With the rights sold to the lowest bidder and rushed out to meet the cinematic release dates every official MCU video game has sucked. The MCU deserves better than to be associated with this trash.
‘IRON FIST’ MISSES THE TARGET
One of the most interesting branches of the MCU has been the darker and more intellectual Netflix series. Starting with Daredevil and then introducing Jessica Jones and Luke Cage, these shows have all been of the best quality, giving a new street level type of hero who worked in stark contrast to the larger-than-life Avengers. Even more impressively they dealt with major societal issues such as the abuse of women and race relations. Then Iron Fist let the team down with a bland, confused and plodding series that honestly feels like the first draft of the outline got rushed into production so The Defenders can get underway. This feels like a completely wasted opportunity as the potential is there. Finn Jones showed us he can do better in Game of Thrones (also he’s a fun guy to interview), the action is a step down from what we saw in Daredevil and the message of ‘giant pharmaceutical companies are jerks’ feels tacked on. I’d rather see Colleen Wing and Misty Knight get a ‘Daughters of the Dragon’ series.
GWYNETH PALTROW IS IN IT
I really don’t like Gwyneth Paltrow. I wish Rachel McAdam’s hadn’t turned down the role of Pepper Potts. At least she seems to have bailed to spread her goop around instead.
Agree with you 100% on Paltrow!
The MCU is actually one of the few times I don’t really have a problem with her.
“What they hell was that circuit board thing on his neck and why did it matter”
Because of the Paladium blood poisoning he has you mean?
BUT WHAT IS THAT WHY DID IT HAPPEN WHAT WAS THE POINT
It was palladium poisoning going through his veins. Not a circuit board or anything.
They’ve sold out. They are just ATM machines.
Interesting perspective and have to agree re Agents of SHIELD.
The Incredible Hulk was definitely a misstep, but I don’t know if there was much else they could do. Hulk just isn’t a good character for a stand-alone movie. If you focus too much on Banner’s inner struggle, then the movie is boring. If you focus too much on the Hulk, then it might as well be a Michael Bay film.
I’ll have to give the others some thought. I agree about some of your points, but I’m not sure about others.