NOTE: This article may include commentary reflecting the author’s position.
The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) used to be a license to print money — not anymore.
Marvel’s new girl-boss superhero movie shows that the MCU isn’t immune to flops after all.
There was a time when superhero movies were pretty great — but that was a long, long time ago. There’s a lot of “been there, done that” with the plot, and with the introduction of the multiverse, what does it really matter anyway? The heroes aren’t special, and if the audience doesn’t like how a storyline went, just crank out a new one with the same characters in an “alternate” world. Easy-peasy.
Now that Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity (DIE) are being implemented everywhere, it means that we can’t just enjoy compelling characters that we’ve grown up with, they have to be altered to become representatives of various identity groups. And they’re all in this world because … of course, they are.
Here’s the trailer for the latest estrogen-laden MCU offering with all-female heroes and a female villain.
It just looks… awful Who would want to see this?
Well, about that…
New superhero movie The Marvels has recorded the lowest ever north American opening weekend box office for any Marvel Cinematic Universe film.
Data site the Numbers reports that The Marvels, which stars Brie Larson as Captain Marvel alongside Teyonah Parris as Monica Rambeau and Iman Vellani as Ms Marvel, took an estimated $47m (£38.4m) over its first three days in US and Canadian cinemas, meaning that it has displaced The Incredible Hulk as the MCU’s worst recorded opening; the latter managed $55.4m on its release in June 2008.
Source: The Guardian
Every. Single. Time. pic.twitter.com/s0WApDGaaC
— End Wokeness (@EndWokeness) November 12, 2023
How bad was it?
Tim Pool points out that The Marvels did even worse than The Flash whose mentally unstable star Ezra Miller has been arrested for assault, burglary, home invasion, and accused of grooming a minor for sex. That guy is freaking toxic and his film still did better than the attempt at an All-Girl Diversity Hire Superhero Team flick. Wow. That’s embarrassing.
Holy fuck The Marvels lost to the flash pic.twitter.com/AJ7FAYfMXx
— Tim Pool (@Timcast) November 12, 2023
It couldn’t have happened to a better person. Behold the insufferable wokescold star of the film, Brie Larson.
Even for an actress, this woman is fake.
I’m not really inclined to make judgments on people as a collective, but man! The group identified by Katie Pavlich on the Ruthless Podcast, the D3s — Deranged, Woke White Women — really make that hard! So many of them are just so condescending and arrogant. Brie Larson could be their poster child.
The entertainment empire that brands itself with the Disney name that it wears as a skin suit to hide its new, woke nature, bought Marvel years ago and there have been some not-so-subtle changes to the brand since then. But then, that seems to be Disney’s raison d’être these days — take a beloved story or franchise and turn it into woke garbage.
South Park recently mocked Disney and its entities in the episode “Joining the Panderverse” with a direct shot at Disney/LucasFilm President Kathleen Kennedy. It is an apt criticism that can be applied to “The Marvels” as one YouTuber did in a YT short.
There’s a lot of speculation on why it flopped so badly citing everything from “superhero fatigue” to lack of promotion due to the actor’s strike to — you guessed it — sexism.
Novelist Stephen King said as much in a couple of posts on X.
I don’t go to MCU movies, don’t care for them, but I find this barely masked gloating over the low box office for THE MARVELS very unpleasant. Why gloat over failure?
— Stephen King (@StephenKing) November 12, 2023
Some of the rejection of THE MARVELS may be adolescent fanboy hate. You know, "Yuck! GIRLS!"
— Stephen King (@StephenKing) November 13, 2023
And he’s not alone. David A. Gross, a film consultant and analyst, said basically the same thing.
“Female-powered entertainment is enjoying extraordinary success right now, but audiences are not embracing these stories,” said Gross.
Which is weird, because that’s not what Disney thinks. They believe that the all-female Marvel flick “resonates” with female audiences.
Tony Chambers, Disney’s executive vice president of theatrical distribution, acknowledged that the results were “disappointing” given Marvel’s “unparalleled batting average.” “There may have been a barrier to entry, with some people assuming they needed to have already watched the Disney+ shows in order to know what’s going on in the films,” he said.
Mr. Chambers added, however, “We know the film is resonating with female audiences. We’re going to keep the pressure up and fight the good fight into Thanksgiving.”
Source: New York Times (archived)
Except… that’s not true. The audience was mostly male.
The Marvels: 65% male leaning, with 45% men over 25, 22% women over 25 (giving it the best grades at 82%), men under 25 at 20%, and women under 25 at 14%. Biggest demo was 25-34 at 33%. Diversity demos were 36% Caucasian, 27% Latino and Hispanic, 17% Black, and 14% Asian. The Marvels secured all of the PLF screens and IMAX, which rep 38% of the weekend’s take. Imax reports that $4.5M was made in their auditoriums.
You mean… superhero movies are more appealing to men and not so much to women? The hell you say!
Turning Marvel and Star Wars into girl brands will prove to be one of the costliest decisions in entertainment history. https://t.co/Yazlxm9dHx
— Chris Gore (@ThatChrisGore) November 13, 2023
It appears that with Marvel’s attempt to inoculate itself against the “toxic masculinity” of superhero dudes, it has relegated itself to making duds.
This isn’t to say that a good female-led superhero movie isn’t possible — it is. DC’s “Wonder Woman” film raked in over $817 million worldwide. (The second installment was kind of a flop, but it was also released during the pandemic when a lot of theaters were still closed, so there’s that.)
The first movie was also charming in the way that the Wonder Woman character leaned into her femininity in a way that Captain Marvel does not.
Maybe the real reason that “The Marvels” flopped is that women don’t want to be lectured that they need to act like men in order to be taken seriously. Maybe — just maybe it’s okay to be a badass woman.
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