Dr. Bob's minions tire away endlessly to help the good Doctor in the name of science,
but with what little downtime they get they would like to share with you fine people! 


By Critch


     So anyone that knows me knows that I love all the Marvel movies.  They have made films that are pretty much universally entertaining and also made everyother movie studio jealous in their search for a similar ongoing cinematic universe like the Marvel movies, which frequently cross over with each other.  This week gave us the release of Doctor Strange, which to no surprise came out to financial and critical success, along with another cameo of Stan Lee, who at this point is either The Watcher or the One-Above-All.  So I wanted to take a look back at each of the Marvel movies just to have a quick rundown of how we got where we were.

     In 2008 Marvel Studios launched, deciding to make their own movies after watching other studios fail at making their properties watchable, with a few X-Men and Spider-Man movies being the exception.  Though they had traded away a lot of their properties in order to keep the lights on a few years prior, they forged ahead with IRON MAN with Robert Downey Jr.  The movie was a huge success, as they took the source material seriously but not ultra serious like the Nolan Batman movies, which also released The Dark Knight the same year.  One of the most intriguing things about the movie was the ongoing character of Agent Coulson who kept pitching S.H.I.E.L.D. throughout the movie, and then finally at the end of the credits Nick Fury showed up, pitching the Avengers Initiative.

     One would think that this would be something just setting up a future entry in Iron Man, but not one month later Marvel released The Incredible Hulk, with Edward Norton picking up from Eric Bana and whatever the hell Ang Lee's Hulk was.  While it wasn't as well recieved as Iron Man had been, towards the end of the movie Tony Stark showed up in a bar, linking the movies together and referencing future movements. 

     Shortly after that Marvel appeared at Comic-Con and announced the rest of their first Phase of movies.  Iron Man would return, of course, but they would also introduce the otherworldly side of the Marvel Universe with Thor, and then take a trip back to World War 2 for the origin of the first Avenger, Captain America.  Shortly after that, in a fanboy's dream come true, all of the characters would team up together in The Avengers.  It was almost too good to be true.

     2 years later, true to their word, Iron Man did return, along with Nick Fury, and introducing Black Widow and War Machine.  Just as big as the first, it did take a significant chunk of the movie setting up Shield and the Avengers, with Coulson returning, and then leaving to take care of something in the desert.  In the credits, we find out what that something is.  Thor's hammer.

     Thor was a huge test for the fledgling universe.  Iron Man was grounded in reality, though a more heightened reality.  Introducing Asgard with Thor Loki and Odin all being glorified aliens could have been a huge mistake that stopped the universe in its tracks.  But not letting anything stop them, the movie played it as straight as Iron Man did, culminating in a full on costumed battle, complete with Loki's horned helmet, on the Rainbow bridge.  That was the moment I realized how special the Marvel universe was.  Instead of darkening it up, or trying to make everything take place in the real world, they just went for it in the grand Marvel tradition, and it paid off well.

     Shortly thereafter, Marvel won again, with getting 'The Rocketeer' director Joe Johnston to make Captain Americaa period piece.  Getting the Human Torch to play Captain America proved to be a masterstroke as Chris Evans fit the character as well as Downey Jr. did Stark and Hemsworth did Thor, and the connections continued with Tony's father Howard playing a major role, as well as Peggy Carter, who would go on to headline her own TV series. 

     At the end of the movie Cap is awoken in 2012 by Nick Fury, and the wait for The Avengers began.  The main crux of Captain America: The First Avenger was the fight for the Cosmic Cube, which eventually would be the first of the powerful artifacts that would be the largest part of the Marvel ongoing story.  This fight continued with Joss Whedon directing The Avengers, with Loki returning, stealing the Cosmic Cube, and using it call down a mysterious army of Aliens, forcing the team-up.  True to the first issue of the comic, Loki turned The Hulk against the team, but in the end good won the day, with Loki returning to Asgard with Thor and the Cosmic Cube. 

     At the end, though, nothing was resolved forever.  Thanos was revealed as the controller of Loki and his magic sceptre, which opened up the universe to promise something truly epic.  And one year later, they began to deliver on that promise when Phase Two began...But that is a story for another day.  Till then, Make Mine Marvel!



Previously on Minion Musings...