The Marvel Cinematic Universe’s (MCU)’s Initial Phase
It is made up of a number of related superhero films that were released between 2008 and 2012. This phase introduced important characters and plot lines that would continue to develop in succeeding stages, laying the groundwork for the vast and connected universe that would come after.
- The 2008 movie Iron Man which was directed by Jon Favreau, introduced viewers to Tony Stark, a successful businessman who transforms into the armored hero Iron Man.
- Louis Leterrier’s The Incredible Hulk (2008) told the tale of Bruce Banner, who turns into the Hulk anytime he becomes enraged.
- The saga of Tony Stark was continued in Jon Favreau’s 2010 film Iron Man 2 as he dealt with fresh obstacles and foes.
- In Kenneth Branagh’s 2011 film Thor, the Norse god Thor is sent out to Earth and forced to learn humility to restore his powers.
- The 2011 film Captain America: The First Avenger This movie, which Joe Johnston directed, presented Steve Rogers, a patriotic soldier who later transformed into Captain America the Super Soldier during World War II.
- In the epic ensemble movie The Avengers (2012), which was directed by Joss Whedon, Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, the Hulk, Black Widow, and Hawkeye joined forces to form the superhero group known as the Avengers to defend the planet against an extraterrestrial invasion.
The first phase of the MCU was significant in establishing the interconnectedness of the films, laying the groundwork for future crossovers and team-ups. It also introduced the concept of a shared universe, where characters from individual movies would come together in more significant ensemble films. The success of this phase set the stage for the subsequent phases, which further expanded the Marvel Universe and its roster of heroes and villains.
While the first phase of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) was widely praised and successful, it was not without its fair share of criticism. Some of the main criticisms related to the first phase include:
Lack Of Diversity
The lack of diversity among the primary characters was one of the key criticisms. With few notable female or non-white characters, the initial phase was predominantly centered on white, male superheroes.
In later stages, calls for greater diversity and representation arose as a result of this. As a feminist I feel that there should be at least one movie based on a female lead, considering America’s position & power.
According to some critics, the first phase had a formulaic structure, featuring reoccurring plotlines and character arcs. The origin tale genre in particular came under fire for being overly repetitive and predictable since each movie featured a hero learning their abilities and overcoming hurdles in their personal lives.
We saw predictable love stories and most importantly predictable male dominance in those stories.
Weak Female Characters
The first phase’s representation of female characters was criticized for being underwritten or ignored. In contrast to Pepper Potts and Jane Foster, who were frequently limited to supporting roles, Black Widow, who was first presented in Iron Man 2, was regarded as a standout. This sparked demands for more complex and strong female roles in later stages.
A unique achievement in the field of cinematic storytelling, the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s (MCU) first phase is unmatched. It accomplished what was once thought to be impossible by fusing a variety of superhero brands into a unified, interconnected universe. This ground-breaking achievement captured the attention of general audiences around the world in addition to delighting comic book fans.
The MCU has meticulously woven different character arcs into a broad, overarching plot during its initial phase, creating a gripping narrative tapestry. Every movie, from Iron Man to The Avengers, acted as a cornerstone, helping to lay the groundwork for this coherent shared universe. It paved the way for ground-breaking crossovers, grand team-ups, and breathtaking action scenes that astounded audiences.
The aforementioned complaints influenced succeeding phases as Marvel Studios worked to address them by expanding its cast of characters and improving the representation of female characters in later films.
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