The tell-all book MCU: The Reign of Marvel Studios by entertainment journalists Joanna Robinson, Gavin Edwards and Dave Gonzales hints at a soft reboot of the MCU. The co-author of the book, Joanna Robinson, was on The Watch podcast, where she divulged that in their correspondence with Marvel Studios head, Kevin Feige, he revealed that the upcoming Avengers: Secret Wars will be a means to softly reboot or ‘prune’ the MCU.
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On the podcast, Robinson said, “We have a quote from Kevin Feige sort of implying that Secret Wars will serve as a soft reboot for Marvel in which they can prune everything…” Robinson continued, “Prune everything that’s not working and just keep what is working or bring back people you thought were gone forever.”
The authors delve into the post-Avengers: Secret Wars reboot in the book by claiming, “As the MCU spilled over into streaming programs and the Multiverse Saga, Feige had to learn different lessons from the comics. How superheroes periodically needed to be rebooted, how to stop variants and spinoffs from spiralling out of control, and how an annual mega-crossover event could unify a disparate line of characters.
Secret Wars and Secret Plans
Avengers: Secret Wars will cap off The Multiverse Saga, encompassing the MCU‘s phases 4, 5 and 6. Just recently, Kevin Feige was interviewed by Variety, reflecting on the MCU; Feige noted, “The great thing about Marvel truly is how many wonderful, interesting characters we have in the comics-they’ve been at it for 85 years. Even after 32 movies, it feels like we’ve barely scratched the surface.”
Despite Feige’s extensive planning, the book’s authors claim that the MCU’s initial success was a fluke. Speaking at a panel at New York Comic Con recently, the authors painted an intriguing picture of Marvel’s rise to the top, claiming that the studio’s success was initially a fluke. Reporting on the panel, TheStreamr notes that Iron Man was made without a script, and Robert Downey Jr’s improvisational skills kept daily shoots afloat. The report adds that Downey set the tone for the MCU moving forward. According to Robinson, Robert Downey Jr made himself invaluable to the studio.
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How Robert Downey Jr may have been the cause of Iron Man’s Death in the MCU
The bombshell panel discussion further explored the topic of Downey and his tremendous influence on the MCU. Robinson also explained that Downey made himself indispensable to the studio, meaning he could command a massive contract and became “an influential creator and businessman at Marvel Studios.” She added that Kevin Feige knew Downey’s popularity and central position, so Feige couldn’t fire him. It meant that Downey could leverage his position as the MCU star and use this to get his co-stars more significant contracts and fight for plot points he felt attached to.
Robinson then goes on to reveal a keen insight. She connects Downey’s powerful position, his ability to command increased revenue for himself and his co-stars, and his sway over creative decisions as convincing proof that this is partly why the character was killed off. She joked, “There’s a reason we never got an Iron Man 4.”
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Back to the Reboot
Despite the MCU’s success, cracks have started to appear, especially in its streaming division. Viewership for shows like Secret Invasion and She-Hulk were down compared to previous shows, critical reviews, and the box office for phases 4 and 5 was lower than before. If Feige tries to reset course and reboot after Avengers: Secret Wars, he is probably attempting to fix the creative problems Marvel has been experiencing and plug the hole left by the loss of Robert Downey Jr and Chris Evans. The studio has been unable to have solid faces for the brand as they had with Downey and Evans. If they reboot, Marvel will have to either recast Iron Man and Captain America or find fresh new talent that can at least come close to filling the shoes of their former stars.
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- A new tell-all book about Marvel Studios hints at a soft reboot for the MCU after Avengers: Secret Wars.
- Robert Downey Jr. might have been the cause of Iron Man’s death.
- Fiege is attempting to tighten the ship and course correct after the loss of Downey and Evans.