In a recent RadioTimes article, written by Huw Fullerton, it is suggested that “we” need a break from film franchises like the MCU and Star Wars. As the writer clearly notes in his bio and the article itself he is a fan, so I can only assume when he says “we” that he means all of us fans. However, I beg to differ to differ.  We do not need a break…well, maybe Star Wars, but definitely not Marvel!

Movie posters for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker and Spider-Man: Far From Home
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker and Spider-Man: Far From Home – 2019 movie releases

After the release of Spider-Man: Far From Home this coming July 2nd we will not see another Marvel movies until the summer of 2020.  A small break, but much longer than the 3 films a year we’ve come accustom too.  December of 2019 brings us Star Wars: Rise of SkywalkerEpisode IX brings the original trilogy story to a close. A long break to the Star Wars film franchise which will not see another film until 2022.

The case for more Marvel

I understand Huw’s concern of “franchise fatigue”. I also worry about that with any film or TV series that I genuinely enjoy.  However, while the MCU is all connected and can be enjoyed that way it doesn’t have to be.  In the first three phases although there were 22 films (23 once Spider-Man: Far From Home is released) but they were not all sequels to one another.  Of those 22 films is was comprised of 11 independent movie franchises that just happened to share characters and be connected via post credit stingers.  For example, the first film in the MCU, Iron Man, spawned two sequels Iron Man 2 and Iron Man 3.  You can watch all the Iron Man movies back to back and never watch the other 19 MCU films and they would hold their own.

Huw also poses the question:

“Getting the shakes at the idea of the next 25 years of actors earnestly talking about the acting challenges of pretending to hit a nasty alien with their big foam weapon?”

MCU actors who have won Academy Awards.
Sam Rockwell, Cate Blanchett, Brie Larson and Michael Douglas are just a few of the Oscar winning MCU actors.

I would challenge that Marvel has done a stellar job with their casting. They didn’t follow the 90s superhero movie template of take the latest action star who couldn’t act but looked great in tights and make a movie.  The MCU movies have all smartly casted actors that not only looked very similar to our child comic book characters, but were also Oscar winners and nominees. Cate Blanchett, Jeff Bridges, Brie Larson, Michael Douglas, Anthony Hopkins, Lupita Nyong’o, and Sam Rockwell make up just some of the actors who have won acting’s highest honor.

Star Wars probably could use a timeout

OK, I kind of agree with Huw on this franchise, but not because I don’t want to more Star Wars, because I do.  Star Wars is definitely struggling unlike the MCU.  I just said to one of my fellow ThatHashTagShow writers that I didn’t understand how Disney (who now owns both Marvel and Star Wars) could be so successful with one franchise and so wrong with another.  Unlike the MCU, Disney cannot seem to get anything right in the eyes of Star Wars fans.

Rotten tomato scores for recent Star Wars movies
Audience Scores on Rotten Tomato haven’t been that kind for recent Star Wars films.

This is why I think Star Wars does need a break.  Disney needs to step back and examine what they are doing wrong.  They need solid plan like they had with the first 3 phases of Marvel movies.  I would also argue that the casting on Star Wars films was mediocre at best and does not seem to get the same caliber actors as the MCU.  However, SW fans need to learn from Marvel fans that the characters you grew up with can change a little and complaining only gets the studio to pull out of projects.

Break or no break, I think these movie franchises are here to stay!