How Marvel Combated the Dying Movie Industry


Photo by Chuck Zlotnick.

(L-R) Winter Soldier/Bucky Barnes(Sebastian Stan) and Falcon/Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) in Marvel Studios’ THE FALCON AND THE WINTER SOLDIER exclusively on Disney+. (c)Marvel Studios 2020. All Rights Reserved.

Rebecca Simpkins, Sports Editor

Transitioning from a society that was shut down for two years, we saw the lowest amount of people going to the theaters. Some could say it was to blame for the pandemic, while others make the argument of why would you go to the movies when you can watch them at home?

Nevertheless, Disney knew that they had to make some substantial changes in order to please the masses and keep arguably their biggest fanbase, with 63% of adults describing themselves as fans, intrigued. Right before the pandemic in 2019, Disney decided to start producing TV shows that will tie into the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Senior Donovan Voglar thinks that Marvel making the jump from movies to TV shows was smart but a corporate move.

“When Marvel joined Disney, they were thinking more about money,” he said.

Hannah Richardson, sophomore, enjoys the marvel movies more than the TV shows.

“I think the TV shows were necessary for a few of the characters,” she said.

Richardson named Loki, Captain America, and WandaVision as a few of the “necessary” TV shows.

“If these were in a movie it would have been too squished,” Richardson said.

According to Pew Research, 71% of Americans say that they have switched from cable because they can find those shows and movies online. This leaves many Americans turning to Netflix, Hulu, HBO Max, and other streaming services.

Disney knew that they needed to do something to keep up “to combat the other streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, and HBO Max,” Volgar said.

Disney+ allowed Marvel to provide their movies and TV shows to fans to watch in the comfort of their own homes.

In May 2022, Forbes did a poll stating that 55% of their correspondents would rather watch movies at home.

“Disney is using TV shows to reach audiences that don’t go out to see movies often,” Volgar said.

Staying home to watch movies is increasing in popularity.

Switching to TV shows gives the opportunity for more fans to watch.

“Before they only had the movies and the diehard Marvel fans, but now anyone can sit down on their couch and watch a marvel show,” Volgar said.

Hannah thinks that this decision has split the fanbase.

“There have been a lot of arguments about whether the TV shows are good or bad or actually worth it or not.”

After the Marvel Universe’s climax of Avengers Endgame, Marvel is using the new TV shows to rebuild the Cinematic Universe in a new way.

“It is setting up small little nuggets to set up a big movie,” Vulgar said. “Having these shows introduces a few minimal characters and brings them to the big screen. This helps them set it up quickly to help bring them to the big screen.”

While making TV shows might have been the right move on paper, it has left many “diehard fans” disappointed. Donovan is just one example. He prefers the movies because “in a movie, they get out all that they need to get out in a shorter period of time.”

Marvel is continuing to release more movies and TV shows for “Phase Four” of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The next movie in theaters was “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” which made its debut on November 11, 2022.

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