Marvel: The Audience Returns

The Superhero genre craze will never get old. Marvel Studio’s multi-million dollar films are both mind blowing and audience pleasing. And with the release of Marvel’s newest film, Thor: The Dark World, here’s a look at some of the reasons why Marvel Studio films are so popular.

Fans of Marvel comic books
Marvel Comics was originally known as Timely Comics. It was founded in 1939 and was hugely popular with young kids growing up in America. Marvel has “over 8,000 characters featured in a variety of media over seventy years” according to the Marvel Entertainment website. Every character has a unique personality and back story.
One timeless well-loved character is Captain America who made his first Marvel debut in March 1941. This is a story of a man who underwent experimentation to achieve the peak of human perfection so he could aid the US in winning World War II. Captain America held resonance with its readers, especially since the US really was fighting in the war at the time of publication. The character of Captain America on screen is much the same as in the comic with his high ideals and old fashioned values.

Many of those who aren’t fans of the Marvel comics still watch the films. The lives of gods and super strong humans distract the viewer from reality. The notion of a higher being saving us mere mortals from danger is attractive. However, there is also another aspect to superheroes that we as people can relate to. Writer, Robin Rosenberg says “At their best, superhero origin stories inspire us and provide models of coping with adversity, finding meaning in loss and trauma, discovering our strengths and using them for good purpose.”

Action and CGI
Marvel Studios only do big budget productions. A large amount of money is spent on CGI (computer generated imagery) to create the stunning visual effects. In Iron Man, a combination of CGI and real costume design were used to create the iconic Iron man suit.
The Avengers had a production budget of $220 million. Most of the action sequences were recorded on a green screen set and CGI did the rest. It was a box office smash, earning over $620 million. If nothing else, Marvel Studios at least produce films that look awesome.

Marvel Studios know how to cast their superheroes. The star studded cast in The Avengers made it the most highly anticipated Marvel movie. One of the most popular casting choices was Robert Downey Jr as tycoon Tony Stark /Iron Man. Producer kevin Feige says “Robert is a tour de force as Tony Stark and he injects that confidence and sense of humor that brought to life and defined the character in the best way possible in both ‘Iron Man’ films.”

Eye candy such as Chris Hemsworth as Thor or Chris Evans as Captain America bring the female crowds in. It’s not only about acting ability; these guys must look the part too. Hemsworth’s training regime for his role as Norse God of Thunder involved Muay Thai, boxing and heavy compound exercises. It’s hard to be a hero.

Martina Brophy

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