So Sony finally admitted they don’t know what the fuck they are doing with comic book movies and have let Marvel/Disney have a turn. Bravo Sony, bravo.
Has this news forced me to choke on my own words regarding Captain America: Civil War not being secret identity focused?
Is this going to be another example?
Ehhh, I still don’t think so.
It is still my strong opinion that CA: Civil War will not be a slavish adaptation of the comic storyline (which I am totally okay with) Heres why.
5. Secret identities don’t mean shit.
Within the Marvel Cinematic Universe (now including Spider-Man on lease) it now makes a total of one Superhero that a secret identity crisis holds any relevance for.
Even Tony Stark found out the hard way in Iron-Man 3 (as do most celebrities with a twitter account) putting your identity and place of residence into a forum for anyone to find is not clever. Carefully maintaining a secret identity however is still a non-issue for every current movie Avenger out there.
“So what’s the story going to be about then if you are so smart, huh?” You might mutter under your breath while reading this.
Well, fiction consuming compatriots ask yourself, what does knowing a Superheroes identity achieve? As Captain America demonstrated in Winter Soldier, ABSOLUTELY NOTHING! Everyone knew Steve Rodgers identity (on Public Record), managed to find him almost everywhere he went, yet he could disappear like a ninja.
Sending 20 dudes to beat the shit out of him in a lift might not have been the smartest plan to take him by surprise.
And no offence to the fine Captain, but he’s on the lower end of the threat scale. Unless you have a team of guys in HulkBuster suits, go on try that shit with Bruce Banner.
Knowing might be half the battle, but superhero registration, just like that fake ID the girl at the bar gave you, is pretty useless.
4. It will be more Logan’s Run than Schindler’s List
Now I think Tony Stark, much like Bruce Wayne has probably spent a lot of time considering how to combat his fellow Avengers if they get out of control. I’m thinking after having to take down a Scarlet Witch controlled Hulk in Avengers 2 this is a go to thought in Iron-Man’s spank bank.
Now think of a hypothetical Tony Stark final solution to this problem, a way to neutralize any SuperHero as soon as they go rogue.
It would involve a surgically implanted GPS tracker, monitoring at all times and to take a leaf from Winter Soldier’s primary threat, a weapon that can take you out at any time anywhere with precision.
With the very relevant current themes, invasion of privacy “for the greater good” would be a primary plot point.
3. Peter Parker unmasking likely to just be fan-service.
The announcement of Sony’s leasing of Spider-Man only dropped recently so if anything it will be a cross out previous Hero’s name in the script and replace with Peter Parker plus changing the supporting narrative for that character.
In the comic storyline Peter was a major part of Civil War. Tony had been bromancing him, even building him an Iron Spider Suit to use all so Tony could use him as a propaganda tool for his voluntary superhero registration. It was an integral part of the story.
Will there be the famous unmasking scene? Fuck probably, they need to chuck something in for the comic book fanboys to shot web over. But, this will be at best a passing nod, maybe to sell it to the public as political maneuvering within the context of the story.
It’s not going to be about who these Hero’s are but where they are and what they are doing at all times.
This is enough of a distinction because in the comics it was “ZOMG Peter Parker is SPIDER-MAN!” “Wait who’s Peter Parker?” “SHHHH doesn’t matter, we know who it is now”
It’s like knowing the identities of Daft Punk. (Spoilers: It’s a couple of french dudes) Interesting to know but telling the bouncer “Ahem, I’m with Thomas Bangelter and Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo.” Wont get you into the club buddy.
God knows I’ve tried…
2. It could reflect real world privacy invasion issues
So again relevance to today and relateability. “So I checked in with foursquare so everyone will know I have better taste than them in dining establishments. Wait. Now the government know exactly where I am!” or “Heheh, I delete my browsing history, then its gone forever, not stored in a searchable table somewhere in the search engine.”
It’s going to be about the government keeping tabs on you, surveillance state, justified paranoia.
“Wait isn’t this just semantics over identities, registration tracking?”
Making identities public and using SHIELD to police them was the comics main plot. Secret identities in the comic are still important and a big deal.
Not so in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, suddenly placing importance on something that has never been important before is not going to invest the audience. Unless they are having an affair, hiding their kinky sexuality or are have a secret online identity.
This will only cover 90% of the population! Not good enough.
1. The context of the Marvel Cinematic Universe is already different
Using the tone that has already been established in Winter Soldier will be continued, because why wouldnt they? Captain America has always stood for what is right even if that puts him at odds with authority. Government departments with a hidden agenda, surveillance and state sponsored drone executions. It’s logical, it makes sense to the escalation of the story and most importantly viewers can relate to it.
Also consider it will be at most a 2 and a half hour movie (unless they Hobbit that shit out) there is a lot to establish in a single sitting, especially now they have Spider-Man. Peter can’t just swing in through the window like he was in all the other movies just out of frame like the Marvel worlds shittiest Forrest Gump who no one made reference to ever.
Based on the outline of the comic and current Marvel Cinematic Universe Civil War could play out something like this.
Act 1. Setting the scene with Iron-Man and Captain America, whatever horrible thing sets the story in motion. Spider-Man will show up and be like “Hay guise, miss me?” Maybe Spider-Man fucks everything up, that s a lot of guilt for him to carry through the story. Superheros can be dangerous even if their intentions are good. Captain America tries to redeem Bucky AKA The Winter Soldier if he can find him.
Act 2. Iron-Man’s final solution it starts off reasonable but it becomes clear not everyone is happy about it, Captain leads the resistance. Spider-Man’s cameo (yes cameo, it’s not a Spider-Man movie, he’s just visiting. Spider-Man bitches out and becomes the poster boy for Iron-Man’s final solution.
Act.3 Civil War, all hell breaks loose, hero against hero, Spider-Man decides this isn’t what he signed up for and aids Captain America and the rebels. Bucky and Steve reconcile.
Captain America and Iron-Man realise after slugging it out the human cost of what has happened. Iron-Man repeals his final solution, Captain America turns himself in and gets assassinated!
Tony admits he was wrong on Steve’s grave.
Many feels are had.
Post credit scene.
The assassin is revealed to be the Red Skull.
Post post credits scene.
Bucky (The Winter Soldier) takes the mantle and becomes the new Captain America.
*Contents subject to change.
Point being the movie won’t reflect a bro love triangle between Tony, Peter and Steve. (although 10 out of 10 would watch this) There is only enough cinematic real estate to accommodate the 2 different conflicting ideologies going head to head, with a bit of scene setting and some Spider-Man web frosting the cake.
If you are expecting otherwise you may be disappointed, hell, people were disappointed with Watchmen and the remained 99% faithful to the story apart from one thing that actually made more sense to change. You cant please everybody…
I am sure on the strength of The Winter Soldier and the Civil War comic that it will make a great movie. I am looking forward to this one more than the Avengers 2 in fact. This movie will really get down to the emotional core of what being a hero is about.
“Am I really making the world a better place?”