Mar 8, 2019
I was sleepy last night after returning from “Captain Marvel.” The movie was great, but this was a day that involved a vomiting baby and a full work day. My body said, “Go to sleep.” My mind said, “Read every trade of ‘Captain Marvel’ that you own tonight.”
Regretfully, neither of those things happened immediately. My body may ask me to go to sleep and my mind may tell me to read comics, but all of that takes a backseat to my wife asking me to watch another episode of the show we're binge watching this week.
I read the first trade this morning. Because it is the end of the quarter and my grades have been submitted for my students, I decided to knock out Volume One. It was with hopes that my daughter could read these books before I let her go see the movie with my wife. It should be noted that she cannot read those books.
There was far too much casual swearing. But watching Marvel’s newest entry in its ever-growing cinematic universe, I couldn’t wait to hear what my daughter would think of this movie. That was what was on my mind as I sat there with my male friends from our church group. It was cool to build fellowship with men, but “Captain Marvel” was about wasn’t about the typical male hero archetype. Carol Danvers, played by Brie Larson, was something new entirely. When comics competitor DC Comics released “Wonder Woman” in 2017, the world was taken aback.
I thought Wonder Woman was very good, but it kind of showed an attitude of trying to emulate the films of its male predecessors.
Wonder Woman certainly could hold its own, even better than most in many cases. But “Captain Marvel” seems like a new kind of superhero movie. Diverting from a traditional superhero narrative, “Captain Marvel” stresses the complexities of being a woman in an era where women are encouraged to fail.
“Wonder Woman” was raised in an environment where there were no men, so she never had to deal with doubt and questions. Carol Danvers, however, was not raised in such an environment. She lived in our world and she lived in space. Both weren’t great representations of what people could be given free reign.
I really like Carol. I know that there was some backlash to Brie Larson’s comments about her press team. I read about how reviewers tried to sabotage the films Rotten Tomatoes ratings before the movie was even released. But somehow, that seems appropriate for the theme of the movie. People want “Captain Marvel” to fail just like the people around Carol want her to fail. The movie isn’t a man-hating preachfest. It has a message and a theme of feminism, yes. But this is a message of actual feminism.