Is the MCU Finally Wearing Out its Welcome?
Reading the criticisms of Thor: Love and Thunder — in particular the remarks about its tonal incoherence, and its shift into self-parody — I find myself recognizing complaints fairly standard about series’ that have run too long. (I find myself thinking of, for example, the more oft-criticized Bond films of the Roger Moore era — The Man With the Golden Gun, Moonraker, A View to a Kill.) And it must be admitted that this seems unsurprising at this stage in the history of the franchise-Love and Thunder the fourth Thor movie, while also the eighth major film appearance for the (rather thin and one-note) character, and the twenty-ninth Marvel Cinematic Universe film overall in its fifteen year run. And considering the fact I can’t help noting that if the film is no flop in the ordinary sense of the term, it is the case that it has fallen well short of the expectations some market-watchers had for it — and a reminder that if the Marvel Cinematic Universe can still score very, very big (with Spider-Man: No Way Home a near $2 billion hit, and Dr. Strange pulling in a respectable near-billion dollars after coming out a mere two months earlier), the most formidable franchise in film history is showing all too predictable signs of tiring out — with the pandemic and the culture wars and the actual wars “deglobalizing” the film market (with Russia and China, long good for $100 million+ and sometimes much more per Marvel movie, closing their doors to Hollywood) have played their part, filmgoers’ enthusiasm for Marvel specifically, simply as entertainment, may be suffering.
In spite of that the Marvel machine will persist, however — Disney far too invested to back off, the more in as it has already floundered with the Star Wars universe that it tried so hard but ultimately failed to make a second Marvel-like success.
Originally published at https://raritania.blogspot.com.