Superhero fatigue?

Avengers: Endgame breaks pre-sale tickets record

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Are you suffering from superhero fatigue?

By Daniel J. McLaughlin

Over the course of 11 years, the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) has introduced a band of superheroes with exceptional abilities. Whether it is superhuman strength, or magical powers, or genius intellect, they have protected the Earth and beyond across 21 movies.

Starting all the way back in 2008 with 'Iron Man', the MCU has been leading up to the events of 'Avengers: Infinity War', and its sequel 'Avengers: Endgame'. Tickets are on sale for the 22nd installment of the MCU - and they have already broken pre-sale records.

With a saturation of superheroes offered by Marvel, as well as the DC Extended Universe and many others across different studios, are we growing tired of these action-packed movies?

The Claim

Heroic Hollywood argues that superhero fatigue can be a thing, saying: "The truth is, there are simply too many superheroes on the screen for the average viewer to keep up with."

They predict that "perhaps sooner than we think" a major superhero movie will fail at the box office, and go into the red. At that point, it will be clear that it has reached the tipping point for superheroes on the big and small screens.

They argue: "I think it’s safe to say that for most, these are pretty much too many super-powered characters to keep up.

"If you happen to be indiscriminate in your superhero consumption, following the adventures of the heroes and antiheroes in both major comic book universes, it becomes overwhelming – and, at one point, too much."

With every new character or new superhero universe, it gets closer to the point where the audience goes "f--k it", they add.

The Counterclaim

However, Forbes' Dani Di Placido argues that "superhero fatigue is a myth", calling it a "silly, simplistic concept from the start".

He says that superhero movies are not a childish trend, but they are "the natural evolution of the traditional action film".

Di Placido writes: "If one is going to play pretend, then one might as well do it properly, and include capes, masks, and glittery sequins.

"Plus, the superhero genre allows for fantasy, sci-fi and action elements to comfortably co-exist, meaning that Hawkeye can fight off an army of invading aliens with a bow and arrow, and not break the tone of the film through sheer stupidity."

With rising budgets and the advance of CGI in films, action movies had to get bigger and better - and "incorporating the American-made mythology that already existed in superhero comics was the perfect way to do it".

He concludes: "As long as stories of pure-hearted individuals finding victory through brute force continue to be popular, the superhero genre will never die. The fatigue will simply not set in, unless we grow weary of bulging butts and biceps wrapped up in skin-tight Spandex."

Di Placido adds: "It’s not a trend; it’s simply a step-up."

The Facts

The Marvel Cinematic Universe has made a staggering $18.524 billion at the box office. It is the highest-grossing film franchise of all time - and it will continue to produce superhero movies. There are 10 more in various stages of production.

Its latest installment, and the culmination of 22 movies over 11 years, 'Avengers: Endgame' will be released in UK cinemas on April 25.

It has already broken pre-sale records across the world. In the United States, it took just six hours for the superhero movie to break the previous single-day record held by Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

In Brazil, more tickets were sold for Avengers: Endgame in just one hour than it sold in the entire first day of ticket pre-sales for 2018's Avengers: Infinity War, CNET reports.

It also caused the AMC website and app to crash when the tickets were released on Tuesday.

When Marvel announced that tickets were on sale on Twitter, the news was retweeted 10,000 times in just 12 minutes.

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Too Many Capes: Why Superhero Fatigue Can Be A Thing

There is no such thing as a "superhero fatigue", members of the cast and crew of "Captain America: Civil War" said back in March 2016. In other words, ages ago. Marvel's superhero flicks have continued to pocket hundreds of millions ever since, proving that they might be right. Marvel has its fans at the edges of their seats as we speak, with Captain Marvel landing in 2019 and the original silver screen Avengers' story arc finally reaching the climax in next year's still-untitled movie, while Fox digging deeper into the X-Men universe and Sony making another Spider-Man flick and more side shoots like Venom, not to mention contenders like Aquaman, Shazam!, and more coming to differently sized screens in the coming months and years (like the gritty live-action Titans, Doom Patrol, a Hellboy reboot, and the list could go on).

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