The Marvels | Review bombing, toxic masculinity and a polarising reception as more reviews emerge
Social media users have claimed toxic masculinity for the sudden drop in review scores for the latest Brie Larson-led MCU film, ‘The Marvels.’
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Brie Larson just can’t seem to catch a break with her involvement in the MCU. While earlier reviews on social media were generally positive regarding her latest escapade as Carol Danvers/Captain America in ‘The Marvels,’ due for release in the United Kingdom tomorrow, that has now turned into accusations of toxic masculinity at the forefront of review bombing and a Forbes articles focusing on the poor reviews that the film has received instead.
Rotten Tomatoes, the popular movie and TV review platform, has given a score of 60% to the latest Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) movie, but overnight was at 53%: the third-lowest score for an MCU movie in the franchise. It is also one of only three MCU movies to receive a "Rotten" rating on the platform, along with ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania’ and ‘Eternals’.
In contrast, the previous movies featuring the three main heroes in 'The Marvels' have fared much better. ‘Captain Marvel’ received a 79% rating on the platform, ‘WandaVision,’ which contains Monica's origins, has a 91%, and ‘Ms. Marvel,’ Kamala Khan's origin series, is the highest-rated MCU project with a 98% rating.
While things might be looking better in terms of its score on Rotten Tomatoes, that has yet to stop what is being regarded as a series of ‘toxic masculinity-based’ review bombs on websites such as IMDB and Google Reviews. Fans of the MCU have laid the charges of toxic masculinity due to the film having three female leads, though perhaps there is still some blow-over from the antagonism Brie Larson faced during her promotional activities for the first ‘Captain Marvel’ feature.
The backlash against Captain Marvel was primarily due to controversial comments made by Larson and a perceived bias against the character and actress. Larson's comments about the need for greater diversity and inclusion in the film industry, particularly among film critics and reporters, sparked heated debates. Some critics argued that her remarks were dismissive of the existing fan base and an attempt to alienate certain groups of viewers. Fans also criticized Larson for being vocal about feminist issues and advocating for more diversity and representation in the film industry.
Moreover, since Captain Marvel was positioned as a pivotal character in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, some fans who were already invested in other established characters within the franchise may have seen her introduction as a threat or an attempt to overshadow existing fan favourites. The comic book version of Carol Danvers, who is considered one of the strongest characters within the Marvel comic-book universe, was considered needlessly overpowered as a response to the ‘progressive nature’ that Marvel was taking with some of their characters - or a case of ‘wokeness gone mad’ to simplify those resentments.