The Death of Captain Marvel SueThe Dark Herald
The movies were successful, and it was apparent fairly soon after the acquisition that unless we made some egregious unforced errors or were blindsided by some unforeseen outside event, Marvel was going to be worth far more than we’d anticipated.
-Robert Iger, The Ride of a Lifetime
Yeah Bob, so about that…
The Marvels did not beat out Five Nights at Freddy’s opening weekend. They knew that going in but now Disney has to cope with the fact that they didn’t beat The Flash’s opening numbers either.
At $47 million for a $300 million film, there is simply no lipstick that can be put on this pig. It is the worst opening for a Marvel movie of all time. It’s a disaster of epic proportions and it came only a few days after Bob Iger’s sleight of hand financial performance at the November earnings call.
Variety has finally had no choice but to admit there is now a crisis at Marvel Studios. However, in that article they lie extensively about why Marvel is in trouble. They are claiming that brilliant creative mastermind Kevin Feige is simply spread too thin across all of Marvel’s many projects. He’s still the greatest producer of all time you understand, but he really needs to focus on fewer projects.
If they were telling the truth, then Fiege’s elevation was a Peter Principle Promotion and should be undone as swiftly as possible, which is arguably correct.
The other half of Variety’s half-fiction states that the unified storyline is covering too many platforms and therefore has created a muddled narrative that has confused audiences.
This is called a half-lie.
When the MCU was started the only member of the Avengers that was as well known as Superman and Batman was Captain America. None of the rest were known by casual audiences but these characters were embraced because they were well-written and deeply layered characters. Each had a complex story that drove their actions forward.
The secret to Marvel’s early successes wasn’t the genius of Kevin Feige it was the Marvel Creative Committee that was placed over him by Ike Perlmutter. I won’t say that the MCC was perfect but I will say that it was instrumental in Marvel’s rise to dominance.
Feige hated it. He felt it was getting in the way of projects he wanted to pursue, which is true, and made unneeded changes to his projects in order to sell more toys. Which is also true. The fact is these were very good things.
On August 31, 2015, Bob Iger disbanded the Marvel Creative Committee. The Phase III Marvel films had been developed under it’s guidance. The last to make it into the theaters was Avengers Infinity War.
Marvel Studios was detached by Bob Iger from Marvel Entertainment, and Kevin Feige started reporting directly to Disney Studio super-cheif Alan Horn.
This was when Victoria Alonso got promoted and started making creative decisions. There had been both a Black Widow and a Gamora project on the boards. Now this was sensible enough, they were established characters with active fanbases.
Sadly, both heroines were coded heterosexual. Moreover, Kelly Sue DeConnick had begun her rampage through Marvel canon just about the time Comics Gate kicked off which put her and by proxy Captain Marvel in the social justice limelight.
Given that Bob Iger was thinking about a presidential run, the timing for a swing to the hard left was perfect. It was where Fiege and Alonso wanted to go anyway.
A pissed-off lesbian superheroine was just what Alonso and DeConick wanted to inflict on the Marvel fanbase. While Captain Marvel broke the $1 billion mark…
It was the first Marvel movie to receive a fan backlash. This was the first time that Marvel had delivered a wish-fulfillment character defined by what she was rather than what she did. It was the first time Marvel had delivered a Marvel Sue.
It was also the first time that Marvel had run into the pop culture alt-critics that had popped up in the wake of The Last Jedi, and suddenly decided they had a problem with toxic fans. “Toxic fan” being defined as someone who won’t eat shit and say it’s tasty.
Nonetheless there seemed to be a certain acceptance of reality concerning Captain Marvel. She was quickly removed from Endgame to the extent that she could be. Since then she had three cameos and now one final theatrical.
I don’t know what comes next for Marvel. We all know it can’t be anything good but this is the end of the M-She-U.