Recently we reported that Marvel Studios Chief Kevin Feige would be expanding his role at Marvel as Chief Creative Officer. Feige has already spun webs into gold with a Marvel Cinematic Universe which has earned over $22.5 billion dollars at the box office in its first ten years. So it seems like a natural progression on Disney’s part to see what he can do with parts of the Marvel Entertainment family that might need a revitalization of their own.
With that said, I have some things that I would love to see Kevin Feige add or change at Marvel and would love to hear your ideas as well.
MCU-Centric Comic Imprint
One aspect of Kevin Feige’s new role at Marvel Entertainment will have him overseeing an aspect of the publishing of the comic books that built the brand. With the success of the MCU, I’m sure the thought is that he will re-invigorate the editorial staff and set the comic book stories in a new direction. This would actually be the WORST thing they could do. X-Men writer Jonathan Hickman said it best in an interview with Entertainment Weekly when he stated;
“I think one of the big mistakes that some people make at Marvel Comics is that we are reactive to what they’re doing in the Marvel films,” he said. “We should not be taking our creative cues from the direction they’re taking things in the movies. That kind of defeats the point.”
He brings his point into focus by saying that he and other writers shouldn’t compete with the movie universe and that he and the other comic writers “should always be way out in front of that stuff. All of that stuff is being drawn from source material.”
Instead of having Feige alter or change the comics, he should spearhead a Marvel Cinematic Universe comic book imprint. If one of the goals is to bring new audiences who enjoy the movies to comics, than an imprint based in that universe will help expand that universe for those fans. Not only could it bring more people into their local comic book shop to buy books, but it could also lead those readers to check out the source material those movie based stories come from. The added benefit is the rounding out of the MCU and introducing new characters that fans will see later on the big screen.
New X-Men Animated Series
Feige’s initial foot in the door of Marvel was being made a producer on the first X-Men film at Fox. His knowledge of and appreciation of the Marvel Universe led him to executive produce one of the best animated versions of Marvel’s X-Men since the 90’s animated series; Wolverine and the X-Men.
(Both animated series will be available on Disney+)
With Kevin Feige overseeing Marvel Animated and the X-Men back in the fold, now is the perfect time for a new X-Men animated series. A series that not only showcases the Marvel mutants in a way that brings in both new fans and old, but it can also be used a way of introducing both the concept of mutants and its characters into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It would be even better if Feige brought in the writers of the comics, including Jonathan Hickman, Chris Claremont and others, to create those stories.
Integrate the Television and Movie Worlds More Coherently
The unofficial motto of the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been “It’s All Connected”. The reality of that premise is spotty at best. With a firmly implanted Cinematic Universe moving forward phase after phase, the Marvel Television universe has usually only had a tangential connection with its big screen sibling. Characters are mentioned, but never seen and sometimes events from the movies are mentioned with the aftermath of those events having no bearing on the world of the television characters.
With Feige in charge of the movie and television universes, creating a more cohesive, connected universe will not only enhance the universe they’ve created, but also allow for bigger, more interesting stories to be told across all platforms including Disney+.
Marvel Knights Cinematic Universe
Not all of the stories in the Marvel universe are family-friendly. Many of them deal with the darkest aspects of the comic book world including monsters, demons, gangsters and killers.
The Netflix Marvel shows dipped their toes into that world and the announcement of a Moon Knight series would signal Disney and Marvel Studios’ commitment to telling those darker stories. The best way Feige could tell those darker stories without compromising the characters would be by taking the formula he developed for the MCU and creating a new cinematic universe based around those darker stories and characters.
A Marvel Knights Cinematic Universe would not only allow for the street level Marvel heroes to tell those gritty, adult oriented stories, but it will also allow for characters like the newly acquired Deadpool and vampire hunter Blade to keep their R-Rated edge.
What would you like to see from Kevin Feige’s new role in Marvel Entertainment? Let me know in the comments below.