Comics Creators

Are Marvel movies too funny for their own good? (A.K.A. Sincerity in comic book movies)


I think that’s a bit crazy. The worst Marvel movies gets 66% in RT and 10 or 15 get over 80%. I think their quality is pretty good, and I’m not sure this area is where they’re weak. Maybe for some fans, but I think there’s equally as many who enjoy the humor. In fact I think the slight nudge and wink is what makes the Marvel movies successful.


DC movies are too dark and serious, Marvel movies are too light and funny.

Go figure.

In other words you cannae fuckin win, there’s always going to some cunt waiting to shoot you down. Not matter how good or successful you are.


Ant-Man and Vol. 2 are rather well balanced. Wonder Woman as well.
It’d be too general to say that each side is emblemed by any one problem.

Just some entries.


Star Wars worked because it had one earnest character - Luke playing it straight - while everyone around him was full “you see this crazy shit?”. Even Yoda was acting the clown at times. So there’s merit to one earnest character surrounded by wiseasses, which isn’t present in Marvel because RDJ provided a new template. And he’s far better than joyless Toby Maguire.

Honestly the video is just jerking it to Spider-Man 2 pretending it’s far better than any other superhero movie. It’s great, but it’s also just a different approach. Not one Marvel should necessarily emulate.

It’s also worth noting that Marvels least joyful movies - Thor 2, Iron Man 2 & Hulk - were all their worst rated and least loved.


It’s just that really good storytellers know when to hold back the humour and let the audience feel the tears welling up. The humour can be a great relief at the end of the scene, to lighten the mood, but … Marvel can’t seem to resist throwing in some jokes all the way through, because they sound nice coming out of their comedic actors’ mouths.


I know, I know I cannot speak for everyone, just myself.
But their amount of joy was not the problem I had with any of those.

Especially Hulk. Damn Hulk…Ang Lee’s had less joy and was much better.


Would you say James Gunn isn’t a good storyteller?


Guardians isn’t really my bag, the comedy doesn’t do it for me. More of a Brad Bird man, I think he has more heart (and a perfect handle on pacing and building up tension). Bear in mind I wish Marvel would make ‘perfect’ films. At the moment they only occasionally get an 8 out of 10 from me (probably Winter Soldier).


I’d make a distinction for the Guardians movies and for a few others in that with those while the humor hasn’t really done it for me - they have a tone of heart and really let scenes engage fully emotionally.
Like, goddamn in Vol.2 when the going gets rough Gunn lets the movie breathe it all out.


Most of his films are pretty good but those wannabe Star Wars films are pretty shitty. :wink:


What? Tromeo and Juliet is neither a Star Wars wannabe movie nor is it shitty.


Which is why fiction is always an act of balance!


If anything, Thor 2 was a straight out romantic comedy and I remember it was heavily criticized for that.


Honestly, I was mostly trolling Jim as the only other films I’ve seen of his are Specials and Scooby-Doo.

I actually like both Marvel and DC films for different reasons and don’t really see why they’re always put in competition.


Hahah, yeah - I was just being wry back at you.

And definitely, they each have strengths and flaws. And I’ll point out something I see lacking in an entry of one and not try to make it a general sweep of the line or in contention with the other side. That way is the path of darkness, dude.


I guess for me it’s just the style of humor. Maybe because I take my kids to most cartoon movies, or rent them at home, but it’s the same style of humor in every Pixar/Dreamworks/IceAge/Minions kind of movie…snarky, rude, based on fairly obvious turnabouts of expectations, every character annoyingly overconfident people who treat each other kind of shitty. There’s nothing based in humility, nothing that feels kind, nothing subversive or interesting or unexpected.

As I said, comedy is subjective. And clearly this style has reaped financial dividends so I’m an outlier.


This is not intended to be a Marvel vs. DC thing though. It’s just about sincerity and confidence in the material. The example of the Doctor Strange is amazing I think because I can’t understand why they couldn’t let that scene play straight.

It seems to me that Whedon cracked the code of the humor of these movies with Avengers, but even then later directors couldn’t manage it as well as he did and started to fall in excesses.


Which scene? With Doctor Strange you have to be specific because multiple scenes are undercut to their detriment. I blame the cape.


I can only imagine how this scene would have been if made as a Marvel movie. Superman would probably have hit an Ice pillar in mid-flight or something.