Marvel Calls Out Fans for Toxic Double Standard
How one line in the latest "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" trailer acknowledged the hypocrisy within the Marvel fanbase.
"Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" is set to be Marvel's next big blockbuster film, starring Benedict Cumberbatch as Dr. Stephen Strange himself, and Elizabeth Olsen as Wanda Maximoff, the Scarlet Witch. With very little time between now and the film's release on May 6, 2022, there is still much that is unknown about what to expect from the "Doctor Strange" sequel. So far, only two trailers have been released for this movie, the first released as a post-credits scene for "Spider-Man: No Way Home" and the second and newest trailer released during the 2022 Super Bowl. While both trailers revealed very little about the plot of this movie, they still gave fans a lot to talk about.
Dr Strange Marvel GIF by Leroy Patterson Giphy
Out of all of the many hidden and possibly not so hidden details in the latest "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" trailer, what stood out to me the most was a single line spoken by Maximoff to Doctor Strange: "You break the rules and become the hero. I do it and I become the enemy. That doesn't seem fair." While this line obviously makes sense in context, since Strange continues to be deemed a hero after the events of "Spider-Man: No Way Home" while Maximoff is treated as a fugitive by the rest of the world following her actions in "WandaVision," I believe it can also be connected to a noticeable trend that can be seen regarding a part of the Marvel fanbase in relation to the Scarlet Witch. Despite both Strange and Maximoff brainwashing or taking control of civilians without their consent, Wanda is the only one that continues to be demonized by a large portion of fans for her admittedly horrible but also unintentional actions.
Scarlet Witch Marvel GIF by Leroy Patterson Giphy
This may seem like a silly thing to focus on, but in relation to other characters in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it seems odd that fans choose to rule out Maximoff but not other characters who have made questionable decisions. It is clear that there is a double standard here, and it is also clear that more level-headed fans aren't the only ones who notice. A large portion of fans believe that Marvel having Maximoff herself speak this line is a way of addressing that certain fans have a double standard when it comes to Scarlet Witch, and many other female heroes within the MCU. The general summary of this issue is that for whatever reason, male characters can do something or act a certain way and it is seen as okay, but the moment that female characters do the same thing or develop the same attitude, fans have a problem with it. Whether or not this problem is rooted in misogyny is for fans for decide, but what I will say is that there is no good reason that female characters like Wanda Maximoff should not be shown the same amount of acceptance as male characters who have committed similar actions or worse.