Memories of a Marvelous Summer

There are a few things that most of us have come to expect. Coffee in the morning, an insane amount of homework the second week of school, and, of course, Marvel content released each month.

Mckenzee Johnson, Staff Writer

Ms. Marvel (PG)

Ms. Marvel focuses on teenager Kamala Khan as she discovers her own superpowers and secrets about her family. There was certainly a lot of humor and fun while featuring more serious scenes as well.

Kamala Khan, at sixteen, is the youngest superhero introduced into the Marvel Cinematic Universe so far. Rated PG, Ms. Marvel is less intense than other Marvel pieces. However, this is made up for by the excellent acting and atmospheric Jersey City setting, which was very colorful

I didn’t love that the climax of this show felt like a remake of Home Alone, complete with homemade traps and trickery.  

According to Nandini Bilal, a blogger who reports on culture for online sites like Buzzfeed, one of the biggest issues with this show was that it depicted Pakistani culture in an incredibly stereotypical way. 

“Why don’t we copy and paste Netflix’s ‘Never Have I Ever,’ right down to the character dynamics and plot points? This will allow us to swap in Islam for Hinduism, but provide slightly improved cultural references,” Bilal writes in an article, imagining what the Marvel employees who created Ms. Marvel must have thought. 

Overall, I would recommend this show, although it definitely has some significant racial and cultural issues, and I give Ms. Marvel 3/5 stars.

 

 

 

Moon Knight (PG-13)

Moon Knight follows Steven Grant, a British gift shop employee, as he discovers a world of Egyptian gods and goddesses. This was my favorite Marvel piece from the last few months. It was funny, entertaining, and had just the right amount of seriousness. The numerous fight scenes were well choreographed and executed and the CGI was clean and not intrusive.

I liked the way that mythology was displayed in this show. Instead of being garish and loud like the use of Greek mythology in some of the scenes in Thor: Love and Thunder, the Egyptian myths in this show were not overused or rushed in their introduction. This allowed the show to feel more complete and not thrown together. One of the best things about Moon Knight was the way it handled difficult topics like mental health, the death of loved ones, and moving forward from bad situations. All of these issues were addressed and not brushed under the rug, as so often happens in the media. I especially liked that characters who had challenging pasts were allowed to work through the lingering effects from these events and the impact on their lives

The only thing in this show that I didn’t like is that the female characters in this show were pushed to the side and not prominently featured in the plot of the show. I gave Moon Knight 4/5 stars.

 

Dr. Strange, Multiverse of Madness (PG-13)

This movie follows Dr. Stephen Strange as he and a team of companions deal with the new challenges of the multiverse, caused by characters including the Scarlet Witch. 

This movie was good, but certainly not one of the better Marvel films. Directed by Sam Raimi, who is best known for his work in the horror genre, this film has elements of traditional scary movies. 

Those who don’t like gore or jump scares should definitely think twice before viewing this movie. I wasn’t bothered much by these elements, however, it was a departure from most Marvel films with its over-dramatic plot.

Despite all of its other problems, my biggest issue with Dr. Strange was that it didn’t feel like watching a Marvel movie. The plot was not engaging and it felt boring and slow. 

While not atrocious, this movie lacked the humor, epic fight scenes, and traditional superhero tropes that Marvel viewers have come to expect. For this reason, I would give this movie 2/5 stars.

 

 

She Hulk: Attorney at Law (PG-13) 

In She-Hulk, the audience accompanies Jennifer Walters, lawyer and cousin of Bruce Banner, as she discovers that she, too, is a Hulk. Currently, this series is still being released and will continue to be released, so I’m basing my review on the first three episodes of the show.

This series was, in my opinion, extremely disappointing. Not only was it very slow plot-wise, but the CGI and special effects were also far below the bar that most Marvel movies have met. The CGI looked fake and choppy, which was distracting when viewing the show.

Although this series did have the advantage of a familiar face in the form of Mark Ruffalo’s Hulk, in my opinion, he wasn’t able to save the show from its troubles, so I feel confident in my negative opinion of the program. I give the show 1/5 stars.

 

 

 

Thor: Love and Thunder (PG-13)

This movie sees Thor and several of his companions on another quest to save the universe.

I really enjoyed this movie. The film feels like a combination of a comic book that is being read aloud and an old-time scary movie. This movie also has one of the most compelling villains and villain backstories that I have seen in a Marvel film.

The camera work in this film is great, and I really liked how the editing made the movie look like a comic book. I also thought that the use of special effects wasn’t too overdone.

One of the film’s biggest strengths was the excellent acting. Both Chris Hemsworth (Thor) and Natalie Portman (Jane Foster) were excellent in their roles, as was Tessa Thompson, who played Valkyrie. I also thought that the use of color in the film added another layer of suspense and excitement.

I did think that the trailers and talk about this movie before it was released were not what the film was actually about. The promotion really played up characters who only appear in one or two scenes, which was slightly annoying. In addition, I was not prepared for the deeply emotional opening sequence, which was very intense and certainly not what I was expecting from a Marvel movie.

Although I mostly enjoyed this movie, the film contains more mature content than I expected going in. Apart from that, I liked it overall.  I highly recommend Thor: Love and Thunder and give it 4/5 stars.