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There’s one thing that the MCU does consistently that I don’t like: They screw up the power curve.
I understand that writing something so grand in scale as the 22 MCU films was tough, but I think they could do a lot better of a job in this regard. First, we can start by saying that the characters don’t have to be precisely matched up. Captain America has super serum coursing through his veins, so there’s no way Black Widow should be a match for the enemies that are a match for Captain America. Sorry, Rex, but karate, kung fu, etc. just don’t work that way. Nevertheless, if the two of them are facing off against the same enemies, I can accept that. Along the power curve, they’re certainly within a reasonable range of each other, and sometimes someone’s specific weaknesses can fall prey to their adversary’s specific strengths.
But no matter how cool it looked, having Captain America, Black Widow, and Falcon save Scarlet Witch and Vision makes no sense at all.
It did look cool though. Really cool.
At one point, Kevin Feige said that Captain Marvel was the most powerful MCU hero. Then he changed his tune, saying Scarlet Witch was. Either of these two choices makes sense (though Thor should be), as their powers come from Infinity Stones. Similarly, Vision’s power comes from an Infinity Stone, so Scarlet Witch and Vision are cosmic level beings like Thor, the dark elves, and Thanos and his adoptive children. That last group took out an entire ship of “gods” (Asgardians) including Thor, Heimdall, Loki, and Hulk. Thanos won a fist fight against the Hulk, who’s probably the only terrestrial hero that we should expect to deal with cosmic threats. Should Hawkeye have been used to save the Asgardians?
I refuse to believe that this is hard to write; I suspect they just don’t want to write it any other way. It’s fan service, but that’s why I don’t care much for it. There’s literally only one hero for which I have a bias: Thor. That’s not based on comics, which I’ve rarely read, but rather my love of mythology. I don’t need Captain America to win a fist fight against Proxima Midnight, because my love for the character doesn’t go back any further than the start of the MCU. I’d much rather see him take on threats that make sense for him, and there were certainly several present during the battle of Wakanda. If Captain is a match for Proxima, then Proxima shouldn’t be in the same ballpark as Thor. If she’s presented as such, then Thor is no tougher than the toughest human (yet can somehow take on the brunt of a neutron star). Again, this makes no sense at all.
Obviously, I’m insanely fond of the MCU, and this doesn’t bother me too much, but I’m no apologist. If the MCU is screwing up, I’ll call it out. This is, in my opinion, their one consistent screw up. They have the chance to readjust their thinking with the introduction of new characters for future phases, but I’m not optimistic they will. However, as I’ll discuss tomorrow, I’ll gladly tolerate an incoherent power curve if it gives us the two critical characters that most often screwed with it.
I suspect the majority of you just want to see your favorite guy punch the bad guy. Fair enough.
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2 thoughts on “The Power Curve in the #MCU @MarvelStudios”
[…] In yesterday’s post, I voiced my only serious complaint about the MCU: The incoherent power curve. While that certainly annoys me, Avengers of Ultron keeps me from forgetting that the least powerful original Avengers, Black Widow and Hawkeye, were certainly very important to the team. If the choice I was given was having a screwy power curve or eliminating them from the story, I’ll take the screwy power curve with a smile on my face every time. […]
[…] The power curve problem rears its ugly head again. Why are Black Widow and Okoye able to put up a fight against Proxima Midnight, who’s a cosmic character that otherwise can give Scarlett Witch and Vision so much trouble? It doesn’t add up (and neither does the prior scene where Black Widow, Captain America, and Falcon best her and Corvus Glaive). […]