Long anti-M*U rant concerning C*ptain Am*rica sequels
This is gonna be a rant, so I’m going to misspell and tag appropriately so that those that do honestly enjoy these films don’t have to put up with my two cents. I can’t make cuts because I’m writing this on mobile platform. Those that find this, read this, and get angry have nobody to blame but themselves, as they actively search for something negative. I have done my part in making this less accessible for those that enjoy these films.
So…as much as I enjoy the C*p sequels with their action set pieces, and twisty turvy stories, I really dislike the need to retcon vital information from previous films (mostly info from the Ir*n M*n films).
don’t get me wrong, retconning information about a character or event has been a part of comics to explain or explain away story elements since the golden age of comics. A prime example includes the sheer acrobatic reaching employed by M*rvel writers to explain how Magneto survived being decapitated by Wolverine at the end of the Grant Morrison era. The retcon is just as convoluted as it sounds, and I understand M*rvel wanting to keep their best villain on roster, at the time. I just don’t think it was handled very well with these films.
look at the opening scene from Ir*n M*n 2. We see T*ny attend a senate hearing after the events of the first film. We see Senator Stern discuss the potential dangers of a drunken billionaire being the only individual, without any oversight, having access to weaponry that makes modern military hardware look like peashooters. These are not connected with the arc reactor/his heart. We see T*ny grandstand and show why it’s wrong to think that he would be dangerous. We see T*ny leave without so much as a slap on the wrist. This scene is important as it shows how the world would react to a drunken billionaire flying into another country’s airspace causing international incidents and having mech fights on crowded highways.
Now, cut to W*nter S*ldier. The big reveal is that the government had been infiltrated by H*DRA for years, and Senator Stern is a card-carrying member. I have problems with this. This validates T*ny’s behavior in the senate meeting. This changes the context of that opening scene. It’s no longer “the government wants oversight on such a deadly weapon in the hands of a drunken billionaire.” Now the context is “T*ny was right to act as he did because it was H*DRA that wanted his tech the whole time!” Wow. Way to take a complex issue and flush it down the toilet with that childish reveal, just because the character was kind of a jerk to T*ny, when Stern, at the time, was totally justified.
Another example: the original Ir*n M*n film has St*rk’s business partner, Obidiah Stane revealed to be the villain, heavily insinuating that HE was the one to kill T*ny’s parents for more power within the company. Ok, that’s serviceable as a motivation. T*ny and Stane duke it out, Stane dies, and that’s that.
Now, cut to Civil War. The murderer of the St*rks is now revealed to be none other than J*mes (B*cky) B*chanan B*rnes, C*p’s best friend, during his W*nter S*ldier days. And it was not in relation to Stane at all! It had to do with those super soldier serum packs in the trunk of the car. Wow! What a twist! And C*p knew about this? When? And what about the whole “no secrets” attitude from the Av*ngers film?
Now, look back to Ir*n M*n. Sure, Stane was an evil businessman that wanted T*ny’s suit and power of the company, but taking away that added threat of his potentially killing the parents removes a bit of his character and just paints the guy as simply opportunistic in the wake of his business partner’s death. With this new context, he has T*ny kidnapped by the ten rings, threatens and incapacitates T*ny in his home, and fights T*ny with a mech suit. Without the insinuation that he’s done this before with having the St*rks killed, we don’t know that he’s capable of all this, and he’s just doing evil things…because! Now he’s just evil businessman #5381, with no real agency as a character, rather than unique Obidiah Stane. Thin, though his motivation was.
my point is, to bend backwards to change what was learned prior is nothing new in terms of comic books, but I feel that these retcons take away from what came before solely to have a twist. This isn’t to show “interconnectedness,” in my opinion. They change the context to scenes in earlier films and take away some complexity of situations and characters, and past stories shouldn’t suffer due to having a twist..