Superhero Soup II: Marvel Edition

Marvel closed out Hall H on Saturday evening, the last major movie studio to give a panel. People camped out in the Hall all day in order to be there. And why not? Marvel is on a run that is some what unprecedented in this day and age. With the release of Civil War this past spring Marvel has released thirteen–a baker’s dozen!–of films that all tie back to the same saga, in the span of eight years. There is nothing int he movie verse that even begins to come close. Even Star Wars, with the seven live action and one animated Clone Wars movies have been over a span of thirty years (and barely equal half of marvel’s output.) DC may be good at marketing, but Suicide Squad which hasn’t even come out yet, will only put them at a measly three.

With such a run still dominating at the box office–even their middling movies like Thor 2 and Ant-Man have been hits–Marvel walked in with no less that six movies to promote, five of which are releasing in the seventeen month span between November of this year and March of 2018, starting with the trailer they brought with them, and then distributed, Doctor Strange.

Other than my intense need to replace the soundtrack they have here with Game of Thrones‘ “The Light of the Seven,” this is not a bad trailer. I was worried there for a minute, especially after they fumbled the controversy of casting Tilda Swinton as the Ancient One instead of a person of color. (One might consider Swinton a person of anti-color she’s so pale.) But I think the mindbending aspects of the movie might be able to override it. I’m thinking this might not be a smash hit, but as we saw with Ant-Man, the company no longer needs to have smash hits at Civil War levels to maintain their streak.

The major focus though, like with Wonder Woman was that Marvel is introducing their first movie that is almost strictly all people of color–perhaps as a way to silence those critics. DC might get out their movie with a female superhero out first, but Marvel will be getting out Black panther in march of 2018, riding the coattails of the comic’s hot streak since Ta-Nehisi Coates started writing it, and the news that Roxanne Gay will be joining him for the next story.

Lupito Nyong’o, Michael B. Jordan, and Danai Gurira were also confirmed as part of the cast, with Nyong’o revealed to be the villain of the piece as Nakia, aka Malice and Gurira as Okoye, the head of the Dora Milaje.

In between Strange and Panther come Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, the contractually obligated but probably unnecessary Spider-Man: Homecoming and Thor: Ragnarok, which, if I understand properly will be a road buddy movie starring Thor and Hulk, and function a bit like a counter story to the events of Civil War. None of the footage or sizzle reels that were shown for these were released to the public, but details for all three were handed out:

  • Kurt Russell has been added to the cast of GotG2, He is introduced as “Ego” and Starlord’s dad.
  • Spiderman’s new movie is being compared to a 1980s John Hughe film, like Breakfast Club or Weird Science.
  • Hulk was shown in his “gladiator” outfit, and he and Thor will apparently battle it out. (There was joking about how terrible Thor is as a roommate.)

And then, at the very end of the panel, with things looking like they were wrapping up without delving into anything past Avengers: Infinity War, the surprise drop was made: Captain Marvel has been cast for March of 2019, and it’s exactly who the rumors said it would be: Brie Larson.

This was received much like Hillary’s announcement of Tim Kaine last week: those who had groaned and hated on the idea of Larson because they wanted Katee Sackhoff 180’d, and announced they were madly in love and all holding it against Marvel that Captain Marvel is now bumped back almost a full year to make room for both Spiderman and another Ant-Man movie.

Let’s hope the good feelings hold out over the next two and a half years until we get there, as by the time Captain Marvel lands, it will be the 21st Marvel movie in the franchise in 11 years time.

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