DC’s Wonder Woman 1984, miserably failed fans, can Marvel Studios’ Black Widow save the day for female-led superhero movies?
Premiering on Christmas day to an immense amount of mixed reviews, the sequel to DC’s anchor female superhero Wonder Woman franchise almost looked like it was destined for 2021 release. Although releasing Wonder Woman 1984 during a festive period marred by the pandemic affected the potential opening week revenue it could have generated. The 151-minute sequel might have more than the pandemic to blame for its shaky premiere. Patty Jenkins, who directed the 2017 Wonder Woman movie returned to the helm for the sequel. Despite the criticism Gadot and Jenkins’ WW84 brought ample subscription to HBO Max as well as viewership.
Wonder Woman Missed The Mark
Granted, the movie did a pretty good job of expanding the stories of its core characters, in what can be described as a commendable attempt at displaying what life felt like in 1980 America. But how much of the two-hour (plus) screen time did justice to the Wonder Woman aka Diana Prince we know from the comics?
While the Amazonian warrior has been known to tackle a variety of daunting tasks in the comics as well as animations, many have argued that her big-screen iteration hasn’t delivered as much. From a plot with numerous holes to certain scenes with bad CGI, WW84 received severe backlash from fans and critics following its December release.
Watch: Wonder Woman 1984’ Roundtable: Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, Kristen Wiig & More
WB’s first hybrid release the movie hit ‘Rotten’ mark at Rotten Tomato website in two weeks of its debut. While the RT ratings are debatable some plot holes and directorial choices are not. Even if we keep Steve Trevor’s [Chris Pine] return – not to forget in a random person’s body – the missing climactic action in the third act and under using Kristen Wiig’s Cheetah and Pedro Pascal’s Maxwell Lord can not be forgiven by fans.
Interestingly, Wonder Woman 2017, is one of the highest rated DC movie on RT. Furthermore, it broke a massive box-office number leading the way for female lead superhero movies. However, Patty Jenkins’ sequel completely misses the mark.
Can MCU’s Black Widow Meet Fans Expectations?
Marvel’s version of Girl Wonder – Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow, which was supposed to kick start MCU Phase 4 but was postponed due to the Coronavirus – is yet to hit the big screens. After almost a year in which we’ve seen three different trailers wet our movie buds. Marvel would have to find a way to release the movie amidst global lockdown. As much as releasing the show on the streaming service would greatly lower revenue – as in the case of WW84 – the wait for theatres to fully reopen might just prove endless at this point in time.
There’s a lot of belief and expectation from Marvel’s Black Widow, especially considering her pedigree across the other MCU titles. Set between the events of Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War, Natasha Romanoff reunites with her ‘widow’ clan in her bid to square with her past. She is joined by fellow trained widows Yelena Belenova (Florence Pugh) and Melina Vostokoff (Rachel Weisz). Another huge addition to the cast is David Harbour. The Stranger Things’ police sergeant plays Red Guardian, completing Natasha’s supposed family.
The villain of the movie is Taskmaster and in the second and third trailers released for the movie we’ve seen a bit of his arsenal which includes a Captain America type shield and Black Panther-like claws. The face behind the mask is still very much unknown however – or is it?
With a lot of people beginning to question the future of the female-led superhero movie in the new decade, after Wonder Woman the onus is on Black Widow to set troubled minds at ease. But with the movie said to also have a 2-hour runtime like WW84, they will have to be very careful to avoid any plot pitfalls.
Black Widow’s release date has been bumped around since last year but finally looks to be settling on May 7, 2021. What remains to be known is if the movie will debut on Disney’s streaming network, Disney+or if they would decide to release it simultaneously in select cinemas around the world.