From Marvel To DC, There’s Too Much Continuity

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Enough already Marvel

Trying to keep up with all this continuity nonsense gives me aggressive diarrhea. What with Star Wars, DC Films, The MCU, Universal’s Monsterverse, and the upcoming Hanna-Barbera shared universe (that’s a real one and it’s being helmed by no one’s favorite actor: Dax Shepard), you have to be extra careful not to get your storylines crossed. Here are the bullet points: The Avengers have to learn how to work as a team in time to stop Thanos. The Justice League have to learn how to work as a team in time to stop DarkSeid. Tom Cruise... The Bride Of Frankenstein… and Dr. Jekyll have to learn how to work as a team in time to stop a mummy? Dax Shepard has to stop.

I know there’s no nectar quite as sweet as tight continuity for nerds like us. I’d sell my mother to al-Qaeda to relive the moment Guardians Of The Galaxy vol 2. teased Adam Warlock. Justice League sucked, but when puffy faced Batman walked into the Hall of Justice, I considered giving the movie a 10/10 (don’t worry I didn’t). That’s how easy it is. That’s how much we appreciate our movies patting us on the head and telling us we’re good boys. Sit through the credits and you get to see Black Widow buy tampons!

You can’t enjoy one of these unless you’ve seen all of the ones before it first. Read the tie-in comics, play the shitty tie-in games, read the novelization of The Force Awakens to prepare for The Last Jedi-it doesn’t end. When continuity informs fan enthusiasm, the property ultimately suffers.

It happens in the comics with some frequency, usually with big event stories. A hotshot writer will get a good, often times transformative thread going, but it slowly starts to get too big to sustain itself. Too many crossovers, tie-ins, prequels, sequels and one-offs, just to please the fans who want to be rewarded for doing their homework. That’s how you end up with a noseless Wolverine, and Orca the whale woman.

It’s important to keep everything cohesive, but we fans could ease up just a tad—we'll enjoy this shlock a lot more, trust me. I enjoyed Star Wars the least when I LOVED Star Wars. Now that I’m at a distance, I don’t have thoughts like, “THAT’S NOT WHAT LUKE WOULD DO, YOU FUCKING FUCKS!” My opinion of any given Star Wars film ranges from “Huh, that’s pretty neat” to “Not as bad as Jar Jar,” though we also need to shut the fuck up about Jar Jar already.

DC films seem to have the right idea going forward. There’s an understanding that these films are connected, but there’s also an implied “ahhh fuck it.” Batman is younger and looks like Jake Gyllenhaal now, Superman was affable this whole time, Lex Luthor is Brian Cranston (please) and everyone’s a little more quippy.

Marvel is doing a good job so far, but I don’t like the idea of a franchise that sees its filmmakers at the mercy of so many ongoing threads. It’s limiting. Rian Johnson literally threw out everything J.J. Abrams set up to the benefit of the vision of his take on the universe.

Have a good time with the stuff. Having said that, Dax Shepard needs to stop.

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