Tag Archives: MCU

How Close Is Daredevil To The MCU?

How Close Is Daredevil To The MCU?

Captain America: Civil War is due out in about six months. If you’ve been paying attention to the publicity, you’ve likely noticed that it’s going to feature an even bigger collection of superheroes than we’ve yet seen in the Avengers movies. In addition to pretty much the entire cast of Avengers: Age Of Ultron, we’ll see debuts of the likes of Black Panther and Spider-Man, as well as an appearance by Ant-Man—and that’s without mentioning new supporting characters such as Spider-Man’s Aunt May. It’s going to be a ridiculously huge cast brimming with famous Marvel characters.

But looking at the film’s details, one thing is clear: Daredevil, one of Marvel’s newest (and, incidentally, best reviewed) characters, is not listed in the Civil War cast. This isn’t a particularly big surprise given that Daredevil currently exists on Netflix rather than in the cinema. However, it’s puzzling for those expecting the biggest collaboration possible, or for anyone who thinks Marvel would be eager to shove Daredevil into the movies. It’s also puzzling given that there has been some light evidence of Daredevil’s specific connection to cinematic Marvel content in recent years.

The first bit of evidence is in Marvel’s gaming content, which has grown nearly as extensive as its film empire. It’s no surprise that Daredevil has appeared in games like Marvel Heroes 2015, or Marvel’s Contest Of Champions, or even the LEGO Marvel Superheroes games. Each of these games is meant to incorporate huge numbers of Marvel characters, and each goes well beyond the casts of the modern films. Something slightly more unusual can be seen in Marvel’s extensive online casino gaming content. This site’s selection reveals that there are a number of Marvel characters featured in such games, but almost all of them are part of the cinematic empire—with the exception of Daredevil and Elektra. It could be a coincidence or simply a result of those characters’ popularity, but it also links the characters specifically to the movie characters.

daredevil

The other evidence is a bit clearer, and perhaps more meaningful as well. Simply put, it’s that the Daredevil show on Netflix is overflowing with MCU references and easter eggs, which confirm that Matt Murdock (Daredevil’s real name) indeed lives in the same universe. If anyone had any doubts heading into Daredevil, it’s now quite clear that the characters in the show would be fully aware of Avengers activity. Meanwhile, the blind night warrior is leaping around Hell’s Kitchen, New York solving crimes, and frankly it seems absurd the the Avengers in Civil War wouldn’t notice and bring him into the fold.

Despite these clues and hints, it seems exceedingly unlikely that Daredevil will make a surprise appearance in Captain America: Civil War. Although, his presence in a secret ending or a vague reference to his activity wouldn’t surprise us. The real question is how long it will be before Daredevil is brought into the MCU in an actual film?

If Charlie Cox, who plays Daredevil in the Netflix series is to be believed, it may actually be a while. Quotes from Cox indicate that the Daredevil show is kind of its own thing at this stage, and that his character isn’t “one of that lot” (meaning the Avengers and S.H.I.E.L.D.). This makes sense if you’ve seen the show. No matter how many easter eggs referring to the MCU there may be, there’s a certain isolation to the events in Daredevil, as if Hell’s Kitchen exists within its own world.

Then again, there’s another way that the show and the MCU can blend together, and it probably makes more sense at this stage. This argument pointed out that while Civil War is viewed as Marvel’s next big project, it will actually reach theaters around the same time that Daredevil’s second season is launched on Netflix. Given the studio’s incredible attention to detail, Marvel has undoubtedly decided to take advantage of this timing in one way or another, and we may well see Civil War’s events directly affecting the world of Daredevil, rather than vice versa.

We’ll find out exactly how all this will work out in the spring. For now, it appears doubtful that Daredevil will be seen at the cinema, despite a few hints and indications that the two worlds will ultimately merge. But it would also be a shock if Civil War and Daredevil’s second season didn’t mix together in one way or another.

Marvel vs. DC: Where’s the Justice?

justice_1 cover

Comic books movies are big business.

Like the Hulk smashing through downtown New York comic book movies these days are breaking box office records with reckless abandon. Disney’s Avengers: Age of Ultron opened with the second highest box office weekend ever of $191,121,109, behind only it’s predecessor Marvel’s The Avengers which brought in $207,438,708 and slightly ahead of Iron Man 3 at $174,144,585. Just three years ago that record for 2nd biggest opening ever was held by another comic book movie, Warner Brother’s The Dark Knight Rises which brought in a then record haul of $160,887,295 in 2012. With these numbers why would super villains even need to rob a bank anymore? The real money these days is in the theaters not in a safe.

But not all superhero properties are created equal.

Right now there is no dispute that Marvel Studios is killing it when it comes to the development of their cinematic universe (the Marvel Cinematic Universe or MCU) Last year’s Guardians of the Galaxy was, for a time, the highest grossing film of 2014. Not an easy feat for a 3rd tier property centered around a talking tree and space raccoon. After Age of Ultron Marvel has another risky film nearing release with “little” known Ant-Man starring Paul Rudd. However, with Marvel’s recent trend of hits on it’s hand the only unknown risk from Ant-Man it seems would be how many times it makes it’s budget back.

If you want to talk about risk then look no further than the DCU (DC Cinematic Universe). Technically with only one movie within the the universe, 2013′ Man of Steel, the DCU is still in it’s infancy. In an attempt to catch up to Marvel’s huge lead and head start executives over at Warner Brothers (owner of DC comics) announced a full slate of 10 movies to spin out of Man of Steel. Batman v Superman will be their next release in 2016 with a Suicide Squad film to release later in the year.

But with the Batman v Superman trailer earning mixed fan reaction and a recent release of the full cast photo from “Suicide Squad” causing some concern, it seems like the perfect time to examine why DC and their effort to create an epic cinematic universe, is already on extremely shaky ground. What follows are five huge disappointing mistakes that DC has already made in regards to their films as opposed to Disney’s Marvel.

Spider Sense Tingling. Spider-Man joins the MCU

Spiderman

Marvel Studios has been on quite a roll recently. Three of the ten highest grossing films of 2014 belonged to them. (Guardians of the Galaxy, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Big Hero 6) In November they announced a new slate of “phase 3” movies  with Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War part I and II taking the spotlight. Forgotten in the announcement were plans for long overdue minority lead movies with Chad Boswick’s Black Panther (sorry Blade) and a female lead Captain Marvel slated for 2017. But now it appears Black Panther and Captain Marvel are getting pushed back to 2018 as a major shakeup within the Marvel Cinematic Universe is creating instant repercussions.

Spider-Man is coming back home.

Long rumored but now made official, Sony and Marvel have agreed to a deal which will bring the web slinger back into New York to fight alongside Iron-Man, Cap, and Thor. According to the details a new version of Spider-Man will appear first in a Marvel film proper before getting another solo outing produced by both Sony and Marvel on July 28, 2018. Sony will still have creative, finical, and distributive control over the Spider-Man license as it pertains to film.

It doesn’t get more win-win than this. For the studios, for the movies, and for the fans, everybody wins with this bombshell announcement (well except Warner Brothers I guess. Sorry DC) which eliminates one of Marvel’s biggest 20/20 hindsight regrets. Spider-Man’s film history has been long and complicated. A great synopsis of the struggles to bring Peter Parker to the big screen can be found here, but in a nutshell Marvel had sold the rights to three different companies simultaneously creating a tangled legal web that eventually lead to Sony owned Columbia pictures walking with sole ownership in 2000. The huge success of Sony’s first Spider-Man eventually lead to the deluge of super-hero films that grace popular culture today and the inspiration for Marvel to begin creating it’s own film properties. Eventually Son’y Spider-Man films ran their course while Marvel’s films set the $tandard for a shared universe that other studio’s are racing to adopt.

But there was always a spider sized hole in Marvel’s films. Because in their growing cinematic universe their most popular super-hero simply didn’t exist.  Sony rebooted their spider franchise with Marc Webb’s 2012 Amazing Spider-Man which although seemed needless performed well enough for a sequel and provide a foundation for a new Spider-Universe of shared movies. Plans were underway at Sony for a film about Spidey’s villains The Sinister Six, A Venom spin-off and even a rumored Black Cat movie since Sony owned not only Spider-Man but his supporting cast as well.

Then The Amazing Spider-Man 2 flopped below expectations and left Sony scrambling for a profitable direction for Spider-Man. No longer the only super-hero in town, Spider-Man was quickly becoming irrelevant while a relatively unknown movie about a talking raccoon and tree was breaking records. Sony took a long hard look in the mirror and with a hefty does of nudging from Marvel I’m sure came to the conclusion that a Marvel gravy training Spider-Man was the surest way to make Spider-Man matter again while also raking in ticket sales for years to come.

Because of this I’d argue ow that The Amazing Spider-Man 2 could go down as the most important Spider-Man film aside form Sam Rami’s first one for it’s eventual impact on Spider-Man and super-hero movies in general.

Spider-Man back home

So where does this news leave us now? One thing that seems certain is both parties seem intent on recasting Peter Parker. Andrew Garfield did a great job in the Amazing movies but for a fresh start with a clean slate a change seems certain. And that speculation as to who the actor will be starts now. I’d love to see a decision to go even younger and really cast a young actor to sling webs alongside Marvel’s other adult heros. I’d be great to watch him grow up over time much like the Harry Potter films did and is an approach with Spider-Man we haven’t truly seen yet. Three versions of the character in ten years is a lot already so whoever they cast will have to stick around for a long time to come.

That also leaves the question as to what film this new Spidey will appear in first. It would make the most sense for him to be in Captain America: Civil War as he played a pivotal role in the comic book story of the same name. But with deadlines and filming fast approaching it seemed the Black Panther would have to fill in instead. This might still be the best idea as a major part of the story was Spier-Man unmasking and revealing his true identity to the world as he registered his powers with the US government. I’m not sure if you’d want to start off your new reboot with everybody knowing who Peter Parker really is. He could still be in that film but in a small cameo role at best given the circumstances. It’s interesting that the deal also opens the door for Marvel characters to appear in Sony’s solo Spider-Man movies which I’d say is all but assured since Sony will want to highlight this new Spider-Man as living in the MCU. What better way than to have Thor fly-by during a scene or two?

The possibilities will have fan-boys and fan-girls going giddy for months to come. Myself included, true believer.