I know that title’s gotta have your attention. “What?! Zack loves Marvel movies! Spider-Man is super heavy in that storyline! What is he thinking?!” Well, I’ll tell you, just as soon as I figure out where to begin…….oh duh Avengers!
The year was 2012. I told everyone I knew that the first Avengers movie had no chance of succeeding in what it wanted to do. Don’t get me wrong, Iron man was sensational. Thor was hilarious. Captain America was one of the best to date. The Hulk movie was great and you’ll never convince otherwise...and they recast Hulk for this so that’s a bad thing. At the end of the day, that many superheroes, clustered into one movie just didn’t seem feasible in the world of cinema. As it turns out, it's VERY feasible. Avengers blew me away, shattered every expectation and to this day, remains one of my favorite Marvel movies of all time. Joss Whedon did a commendable job directing this movie (This was MANY years before all this Justice League stuff). I found myself getting emotional at points, simply because I saw things flying right off the pages of the comics I read as a kid. Superheroes were working together and riffing and beating on a faceless CGI army of alien baddies. It was so great, and naturally, that level of success had Disney thinking bigger. And bigger. And more big. And all of the big.
The year was 2019. The election was far enough away that humans could converse intelligently without screaming at each other. Covid was merely another one of China’s 16,982 disease outbreaks. It was a better time. Marvel’s 10 years of work had come together in the INCREDIBLE Avengers Infinity War the year before, the cliffhanger ending leaving us on the edge of our seats for the conclusion (Well most people, every character that got snapped already had sequels in the pipe, so common sense made that part a bit less ominous). Marvel Endgame was the spectacular finale not just to Infinity War, but to the entire 19 film Infinity Saga. A lot was riding on it, and in many ways it delivered. Some would say in other ways, it missed the mark. My take is simply this, it was a very pretty mess. I loved the time traveling back to the first Avengers film. I hated when they time traveled to Guardians of the Galaxy and the whole subplot that followed as a result. I love Cap lifting Thor’s hammer. I hated fat Thor. I loved that incredible ending sequence. I hated the introduction sequence. I could go on and on, there was a lot I loved and some that I really hated. Regardless, it is nowhere close to the arrow-straight design and execution of Infinity War. These big ensemble movies are getting too bloated, which leads to lack of story, which eventually leads to movies that aren’t that good. Which brings us to Secret Wars.
WHAT WOULD BE GOOD
- Wow! Look at all the people! There’s Spidey! And Cap! Cool, there goes Hulk! Oh man, is that the Fantastic Four?! Some of the Xmen are here?! A Marvel story that pulls from as many corners as it can while also introducing some fresh faces. It’ll put butts in seats that's for sure.
- Disney buying Fox means they now own the rights to Galactus and Dr. Doom, who not only are big parts of Secret Wars, but also fill a void in the current MCU. Very few villains make it past one movie without being killed off or captured (forgotten immediately). Disney needs to figure out how to hold onto its villains, before they run out of them.
- Spiderman gets his black suit. Yep, this is how it happened in the comics. A strange planet in a distant galaxy…..a bizarre lost laboratory…..and a funky black ooze. Sounds simplistic now, and it kinda was then, but we all know what it leads to. Plus Disney could change the elements of how he finds the suit if they want. People just want that story arc to be done right in a movie for once (Raimi ruined it. Don’t lie to yourself, Spider-Man 3 is trash). This of course hinges totally on Sony and the new Venom franchise and loads of negotiations, but it would be pretty dynamic if it could be done.
- The Beyonder. A strange and super powerful cosmic entity from a distant galaxy, or dimension, or both! He has incredible powers which he uses most often in the form of sick games and tests, with motivations unknown. His fascination with earth’s heroes lead him to create Battleworld, load it with technology and weapons and finally place a bunch of heroes and villains there to fight each other. His character would later be flushed out to something with a bit more depth, but he still carries with him an interesting presence. I have long waited to see if Disney could find some way to bring this character to film and despite my objections to Secret Wars, would love to see him come to life.
- Battleworld. This one is short but obvious. The fight would be insane. Everyone wants this fight.
WHAT WOULD BE BAD
- Wow look at all the characters!........who need fully flushed out plots, story arcs and character arcs so they can all actually interact in ways that feel natural. Throwing all these characters together will cause a lot of confusion for the audience, and there is a lot of potential for this script to be an absolute mess.
- Dr Doom. Despite being one of the greatest villains in the history of Marvel, the issue here is his role in Secret Wars. He ultimately wants to use the provided technology to steal the Beyonder’s power and use it to shape the universe to his liking……...now why does that sound so familiar…...I feel like I just saw something like that recently…
- Timing. Two of the biggest heroes that are part of this story are Iron Man and Captain America…..and…..well, have you all seen Endgame yet?
- X-men. Alright, now I’m biased here big time. I loved the Fox X-men movies, so much so that I’m still convinced Disney will not do better than them. It’s also gonna take a long time to build up that ensemble to the point where they could even participate in Secret Wars in a way that makes sense.
- The “Entanglement”. I’ll keep this one brief. Magneto sleeps with Wasp in the comic and it’s gross.
- The Endgame fight. Now before you all start yelling, listen up. That battle was incredible. It also suffered from a lack of light and color. This is a recent problem with these “big budget” CGI blockbuster movies. All that money isn’t paying to keep the lights on lately. Godzilla is constantly obscured by rain and smoke. Harry Potter’s final battle has the most lifeless color palette I’ve ever seen in a movie. Endgame’s final battle takes place in the middle of the afternoon, but there’s so much smoke in the sky that it makes the entire scene this weird, really dark, greyish red color. Add on top of that 2 “waves” of greyish CG characters running into each other and you quickly realize my point. CG fights are pricey and even before the covid movie crisis, studios were already taking shortcuts. You really think this fight can live up to the hype?
- Script. Alright, this one is a cheap shot but it's not entirely negative. Obviously, the plot of Secrets Wars is likely gonna be cut to bits in order to make it into a movie. What we end up getting may not be Secret Wars at all, perhaps only in name. This will almost certainly make a lot of people angry, but it all hinges on execution. Look at Infinity War. That movie is more or less a shell of the comic it is based on, which is actually called Infinity Gauntlet. The actual Infinity War comic is garbage, but the name is catchy so they used it for the movie. They changed the setting, the character and even Thanos’ entire motivation for the movie, and it worked. Look at Venom. Spider-Man isn’t even MENTIONED and that movie made $800 million. Even I like Venom.
Honestly this blog is a bit pointless, as a Secret Wars movie is an inevitability at this point, because Disney and because money. I don’t really want Secret Wars but I’d still watch it. The comic meant a lot to me and I thought it was awesome when I was a kid. I’m just saying they need to branch out. I would honestly rather them try and tell new story arcs using these characters instead of loose comic adaptations. Plenty of stories that were never told and are just waiting to be made. Disney just needs to dare to take that step………...and to stop playing with Sony’s toys...DISNEY DON’T YOU DARE MAKE A LIVE-ACTION SPIDER-VERSE MOVIE BECAUSE YOU WILL RUIN IT AND IT WAS SONY’S WORK IN THE FIRST PLACE AND YOU’RE JUST MAD THAT “TOY STORY 4” WAS POO POO AND “INTO THE SPIDER-VERSE” WAS MILES AHEAD OF YOU GUYS…...YEA I KNOW WHAT I SAID, IT WAS A GOOD PUN