Consistency is something to be proud of. Most people make plans to be consistent for a few weeks, a month, or even an entire year. Whatever the duration may be, you begin to see progress in the right direction. Now, imagine a movie studio that’s been consistently releasing high-quality movies every year for nearly a decade; quite a streak. That’s the case with Marvel Studios. They’ve released Blockbuster movies since 2010, and have built momentum for their storyline which was able to achieve the highest box office movie of all time—now placed in second with Avengers: Endgame. All that came to a halt with the rest of the world in 2020. There were uncertainties with release dates and eventually their marquee movie for the year, Black Widow, was eventually pushed back to 2021 which destroyed their streak.
Although most would see this as something to be sour about, Marvel Studios didn’t waste any time building a new streak. The empire was determined to make its comeback. In January 2021, Marvel released their first-ever television show on the Disney+ platform, WandaVision. Many fans were skeptical about how this show would match up against their top-tier movies, but with new episodes releasing weekly, doubt quickly diminished as it became one of the best shows of the year—so far. The show would conclude on March 5th, with Marvel cementing the case that they’re able to maintain their quality while switching from movies to television shows.
Adding to their comeback, they introduced their second television show, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. This show was also released weekly spanning from March 5th to April 23rd, strengthening Marvel Studios’ television resume. By its end, Marvel had already advertised another upcoming show for 2021, Loki, but instead of it being released within a few weeks, there was a gap of just over a month.
In that month while fans were recovering from the momentum Marvel Studios created, the Marvel Entertainment YouTube channel released an unexpected video titled Marvel Studios Celebrates the Movies. The video starts with the voice of the famous late comic creator Stan Lee describing the essence of being a big family in a touching way using footage from Marvel’s first three phases. It then features an audience reaction to one of the studios’ biggest moments, which was gripping and emotional to watch for most who have experienced the pivotal moment in theatres. The video then rapidly changes into its iconic title sequence and leads into teasers for Black Widow, Shang-Chi, and The Eternals. The movie continues to pick up speed and shows the confirmed titles and finalized release dates for the next seven movies that will be featured in Marvel’s Phase 4, and even gives a hint to the fan favourite Fantastic Four franchise. The video finally ends with a message to the fans, signing off with “See you at the movies.”
Since the video was unexpected, it caused an immediate impact. It was trending on social media, earned ample amounts of views in its first 24 hours, and gave the fans more to talk about while waiting for Loki to premiere. Due to the delays caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, upcoming film names and release dates were very uncertain. But, this video was able to confirm the next ten movies and bring excitement for upcoming years. Most of all, the video was able to address the isolation the world faced over the past year in a subtle way. It reminded us what it was like to experience the movies as a community, and with theatres in Ontario now being open, I was finally able to experience Black Widow in theatres. The first thing I could think about was the perseverance mentioned by Stan Lee in that specific YouTube video.
Although Disney+ had just finished their Loki series, they are still supplying fans with what they want—a new show titled What If… set to premiere on August 11th. As for Marvel Studios leaving us with the message “See you at the movies,” after my experience this weekend, all I can respond with is “It was worth the wait.”
Black Widow is now playing in theatres all throughout Ontario (and streaming on Disney+ if you’re still not ready for the cinemas). I hope you will enjoy it as much as I did.