Do you ever feel like you notice a trend when you look at the movies out in theaters?
Like, every time you look, there's at least one superhero movie showing?
It's not just you. There's a new superhero movie out pretty much all the time. At the time of writing this article, two superhero movies are currently showing in theaters (Wonder Woman and Spider-man: Homecoming).
Now, I'm not going to say that all superhero movies are trash. There's certainly some good ones and as far as movies go, you could do a lot worse (take The Emoji Movie, for example). But at this point, it's a little tiresome to see more new superhero movies coming out in theaters. I'm tired of watching them. And here are a few reasons why:
There's not a whole lot of suspense.
You know the superhero's going to win. He or she never doesn't win. So even when the world appears to be crumbling around him/her, you know that our hero's going to be just fine. No matter how scary or powerful the villain is. This is one area The Dark Knight did well in. In some ways, The Joker won. Like (Spoilers) Batman had to admit to doing Harvey Dent's crimes to preserve Dent's identity and keep Gotham citizens hopeful of change for their city. But it was at the cost of our hero's reputation being tarnished. Which was unexpected and well done. Unfortunately, you don't see that in very many other superhero movies.
The superhero is not very relatable.
Do you have so much money you're able to access fancy gadgets and weaponry? (Batman) Are you a genius inventor who makes cutting-edge technology? (Iron Man) Are you super buff? (Captain America, Thor, Hulk, etc.) And super good looking? (Every superhero) And very good with the ladies? (Every male superhero except maybe Spider-Man in the original trilogy) The answer to at least one of these questions is probably "no".
For me, many superheroes are like "Mary Sue" characters. The "Mary Sue" is a character who is too perfect, so much so that she can't do any wrong and doesn't have any weaknesses. I find a lot of superheroes to be exactly that. Take, for instance, Tony Stark: he's rich, great with the ladies, fights crime, is super smart, and his one downside is...he can be a little egotistical and not super considerate of other's feelings? Can't we all? I mean the dude fights crime for a living, so he obviously cares about people, even if he sometimes acts a little jerk-like every now and again.
What makes an audience care about a story is being able to relate to its protagonist. Only then can we truly care that they achieve their goals. And I don't know about you, but I can't relate to a guy who has more money than he knows what to do with, is almost entirely selfless, looks beautiful all the time, is super buff, and invents things in his spare time (Iron Man).
They all follow the same formula (with a few exceptions).
There's an object or weapon that, if it falls into the wrong hands, could be dangerous, and we need you to go retrieve it and stop who's after it (or has it already)! (Avengers, Thor: The Dark World, Spiderman: Homecoming)
There's a guy who wants to end our world as we know it and we must stop him or people we love will die! ( Avengers, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Thor: The Dark World, X-Men: First Class, X-Men: Days of Future Past, Doctor Strange, Spider-Man 2)
I get it. There's only so many conflicts that demand superhero attention (ie the world ending if our hero doesn't do something). But does that have to be the only conflict? What about conflicts within? How come no superhero (that I've seen) struggles with their own demons? Sure, Batman has a dark origin story, but that doesn't keep him from fighting crime. In fact, in a way, it made him stronger since it's what causes him to fight crime in the first place. He doesn't ever really have to face himself.
That's why it was refreshing in Doctor Strange to see a character known for being a great surgeon have to face never being able to perform surgery the same again after a car accident. He loses a lot of control in his hands. The only problem is, this conflict is glossed over once it's used as a catalyst to make Strange look for another purpose. Soon after Strange acquires new powers, there's no more conflict within: no more self-doubt, nothing. He doesn't need to be a surgeon, he can be much more than that. So it doesn't matter that he had that inner turmoil in the beginning, it's all gone now and was solved pretty quickly.
Anyway, that's enough for that rant. Do you agree with me? Or am I just being nit picky? Feel free to comment below. Thanks for reading!