Morbius, Moon Knight, and the Future of Marvel

Ryan Hill, Staff Writer

It feels like every week we’re hearing information and rumors about a new Marvel project that’s in development, filming or being released. Just in the past couple of weeks, we’ve got two new superhero properties with the film “Morbius” and the Disney Plus show “Moon Knight.” By the end of 2022 alone, over 10 different Marvel superhero films or television projects will have come out. It’s clear that ever since the rise of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) starting in 2008, the superhero craze has completely exploded with an astounding amount of releases in a single year. Going from around two-to-three superhero film releases each year to this new release timeline is honestly a bit overwhelming. While many of these projects are high-quality and have brought new cinematic attributes to the genre, there’s no denying that a lot of junk is starting to be released. While shows like “WandaVision” brought new light to the superhero genre, movies like “Morbius” or even some of the more recent MCU movies are beginning to show the cracks in the wall. Even as someone who watches every new superhero release that comes out, it’s clear to me that the future of these properties could be in danger due to the sheer abundance of content that’s coming out, and could lead to the downfall of modern superhero films. 

One aspect of the MCU that has always been so appealing to fans is all of the films’ connections. These characters could run into each other for any reason and collaborate in each other’s films and shows. After “Spider-Man: No Way Home,” Sony-Marvel could also be fair game for potential crossover. This was great when you only needed to watch around 10 films to catch up to the webbed story—which is still hefty but manageable. Now, take all of the current MCU films, Sony films, Disney Plus shows, Netflix shows and all of the other side content associated with these live-action characters. Some hardcore fans may be willing to binge through this content multiple times a year but think about the new fans whose interest is just emerging. An average person probably isn’t going to want to start from the beginning of all of these properties to catch up to now. At this point in the universe, it’s hard to justify not watching everything else in the MCU, given that so many plot points nowadays are reliant on the background the other movies and TV shows provide. It’s admittedly intimidating and, sometimes, boring. As much as I’m a fan of these movies and shows, there have been many low points in terms of quality. I personally wouldn’t want anyone to watch “Thor: The Dark World” or “Iron Fist” and feel I wasted two hours for a stepping stone.

After watching both “Morbius” and “Moon Knight” this past week, I think I can see the future of superhero entertainment. Some properties are gonna be genuinely quality products that stand out and will bring great attention and praise, and others will fall below the bar and join the pile of subpar products released in the last five years. At this point, there’s going to be too much content for even the most hardcore of fans. Eventually, people may just get bored of the constant stream of new heroes and villains. These characters used to be unique, and it’s a shame because now we’re getting more representation in these films and shows than ever, but it just came too late. I think sooner later than later; the superhero genre may be snapped away.

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