At some point over the last decade, there was a shift in how people responded to certain movies. Instead of getting one good Marvel movie every few years that satisfied fans and critics alike, the studio decided to jam-pack as much superhero content as they possibly could in one year, releasing various streaming shows, movies, and even some multiverse one-shot episodes. Yes! They are fun! But as time went on…they just became the standard. And fans have grown to expect handfuls of trailers and movies every year.
Others in the industry have noticed this. While fans love getting to see their favorite Marvel superheroes as much as possible, it becomes less of an exciting thing and more of an expected thing, which is the problem, according to the Watchmen showrunner Damon Lindelof.
Lindelof joined Vulture’s “Into It” Podcast to talk about a number of fun topics, including why Marvel just won’t let some of their storylines get a nice easy ending. He explained, “It’s always going to be hard because once you’ve got someone’s attention, you want to keep it. And so the idea of letting it go and not knowing if you’re ever going to get it back again is sort of like, it’s antithetical to the way that we’re wired.” It’s true: everyone loves to see Thor onscreen, as they have for the last decade. But when is it time to, you know, let Chris Hemsworth do anything else?
“From a slightly sort of more cynical standpoint, this is a business. It’s an industry. And if you make a couple of great Marvel movies, the instinct is, ‘We need to make more Marvel movies, and we need to expand this,'” Lindelof explained. “And I have this sort of interior feeling of like, ‘Wow, I wish they made less because it would make each one that came out a little bit more special. But I watch all of them. … People don’t want things to end. I do.”
It can make things seem a little less exciting when fans are constantly bombarded with new superheroes and content every few months, instead of taking the time to appreciate what they had so they can be praised individually instead of lumped together with seven other movies. As Marvel’s VFX artists have been pleading with the company for more time and pay, it’s time we learn to spread out these releases a bit more. It’ll be like 2008 again! So retro!
Of course, Lindelof knows that it’s ultimately a business that needs to keep making money. “I don’t begrudge them the right to keep it going. I’ve made prequels and sequels and reboots, so I can’t be a hypocrite and say, ‘God, come up with an original idea.’ Meanwhile, I’m making two Star Trek movies and Prometheus.” There is nothing wrong with a couple of fun reboots here and there….as long as they are good.