Yesterday, a bombshell report revealed that Marvel Studios has gone back to the drawing board with Daredevil: Born Again and will now start from scratch after shooting nearly half of the show’s first season. A few scenes and ideas will remain, but it sounds like much of what was shot will be left on the cutting room floor.
That same piece revealed Marvel Studios plans to hire proper showrunners, stop shooting big-budget TV shows the way they do movies (later fixing them in post-production), and swap splashy event series’ for more traditional, multi-season small-screen offerings.
It’s clear the studio is already changing its approach to the MCU’s place on Disney+ and, after what’s proven to be a steep learning curve, that’s no bad thing. A lot we’ve seen from them on the streamer has been fantastic (albeit far from perfect) but we have a few more suggestions for how to fix future TV shows.
Find out what we think Marvel Studios needs to do in the wake of Daredevil: Born Again‘s creative reboot by clicking the “Next” button below.
5. Follow The Netflix Model (To Some Extent)
Marvel Television got an awful lot wrong, but they initially approached those Netflix TV shows in a smart way. From the beginning, the decision was made to introduce Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist in individual series before uniting them in The Defenders.
In the end, it was all a bit disappointing, but Marvel Studios could follow a similar model in a more effective manner, essentially recreating the MCU on streaming. Rather than using these shows as a launching platform for characters whose stories then continue in movies (several have been guilty of being glorified prequels), why not focus on specific characters and build to an event series?
Like the Infinity Saga, certain shows would be more important than others and we’d still like to see some crossovers between film and television; however, with a specific plan in place, these projects would feel as impactful and intriguing as what we’re seeing from Jon Favreau and Dave Filoni’s Star Wars offerings.
4. Not Every Character Needs A TV Show
Marvel Studios was either forced by former Disney CEO Bob Chapek to develop as much streaming content as possible or have been given too much rope only to…well, you know. The fact is, not every character needs to be showcased in a TV series and that’s evident from how much some shows have struggled.
Ms. Marvel, for example, was a lot of fun but got bogged down in its middle chapters thanks to underwhelming villains. Why not just introduce Kamala Khan in The Marvels? Does Agatha Harkness need a six-hour TV series? Does Ironheart? Nick Fury certainly didn’t and we’re still not sure what Moon Knight accomplished.
It’s time to be more selective and avoid the mistake Marvel Television made when the spotlight was shifted to the likes of the Runaways, Cloak and Dagger, and Daimon Hellstrom. Team-ups might be a better option moving forward with a slightly more reserved approach to what feels like endless introductions.
Between the TV shows and Phase 4’s endless movie cameos, there are simply too many heroes who have shown up only to never be seen again (Eternals-who?).
3. Better Communication Between The Film And TV Creative Teams
One of the most infuriating things about being an MCU fan during the Multiverse Saga has been the obvious lack of continuity and connectivity between the movies and TV shows. Not everything in the Infinity Saga neatly linked up, and that’s fine, but these past few years have been nothing if not messy.
Sam Raimi hadn’t even watched WandaVision while making Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, perhaps explaining why the Scarlet Witch felt like a totally different character. The Marvels isn’t expected to reference Secret Invasion and we’ve seen some pretty big contradictions in terms of how the Multiverse works (it will have taken Loki‘s TVA three years to show up elsewhere by the time Deadpool 3 is released).
We expect better from Marvel Studios. Clashing production schedules and an apparent lack of planning can be blamed for these missteps but with fewer TV shows now heading to Disney+, we’re optimistic things will slowly start to change.
2. Stop Following The Same Formula
It’s recently been revealed that Marvel Studios has been handling its TV shows like movies, shooting them in their entirety and then attempting to figure out what didn’t work in post. However, as they’ve since learned, what works for a two-hour motion picture doesn’t quite have the same effect on a multi-episode drama.
We’re not sure if this is connected, but a recurring thread through almost all these small-screen projects is a formulaic approach to storytelling that sees the title character only suit up in the finale.
WandaVision, The Falcon and The Winter Soldier, Hawkeye, Moon Knight, Ms. Marvel, and She-Hulk: Attorney at Law are all guilty of this to varying degrees. Even Secret Invasion kept us waiting for the Super-Skrull until the finale.
Why couldn’t we have six episodes of Ms. Marvel protecting New Jersey as a superhero? Did we really need to wait until the final episode to see Sam Wilson embrace being Captain America?
1. Focus On The A-Listers…Mostly
It’s been enjoyable to meet lesser-known characters on Disney+ and we certainly don’t want that to stop. However, an argument could also be made that these shows have been at their best when focusing on the heroes we’re used to seeing in theaters.
That’s why the likes of WandaVision, Loki, and Hawkeye felt like a big deal, with the fact those shows furthered the stories of Wanda Maximoff, the God of Mischief, and Clint Barton ensuring they’re arguably more memorable than, say, She-Hulk: Attorney at Law and Moon Knight.
This has also helped those lesser-known heroes, with Kate Bishop and Monica Rambeau clearly benefiting from that A-List rub; would they have fared as well had they been left to headline their own shows?
There’s a balance to be found here but expanding on the characters we see in the movies still feels like the best way to make these TV shows mean something.
Marvel Studios is about to make some major changes to its Disney+ TV shows and we’re taking a look at more essential steps they should take to save the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s streaming offerings… Read More