In a superhero-dominating movie industry where the first names thought of are Captain America, Iron Man, Thor, The Hulk, Batman, Superman (Yes, I know Batman and Superman belong to the DC Universe). I’m happy to see more female centered superhero movies.
There have been a number of non-leading roles for female heroes such as Black Widow, Wanda Maximoff, Wasp, Valkyrie, but Captain Marvel is a step in the direction to create more opportunities for viewers like me seeking female representation from the movie industry.
While I am encouraged by this, others have decided to be against this idea.
Marvel’s newest action-packed movie, “Captain Marvel,” was released earlier this month, and personally, I thought the movie was absolutely fantastic. The fact Marvel has finally released a female superhero movie, especially after the flop “Elektra” was 14 years ago, proves the world is ready and waiting for more female superhero movies.
I actually loved “Elektra” when it came out, but I seem to be the minority. The film was Fox’s female superhero attempt starring Jennifer Garner as the title fighter, and the release bombed so badly it apparently scared off at least one Marvel executive from giving another superpowered woman the “solo spotlight,” and with that we never saw another Marvel solo female lead, until Captain Marvel.
Captain Marvel wasn’t originally created in the comics as a lead. She started off in the comics as the love interest of the first Captain Mar-Vell. But when she did become the lead, and not the movie lead she is today, she’s actually known as one of the most powerful Avengers in the Marvel Universe.
Knowing this and watching the movie, there are specific scenes which I found personally empowering. Every time Captain Marvel got knocked down, the movie makes an effort to highlight how she always got back up. There are flashbacks to her childhood and to when she is training in the Air Force. Every time she took a hit or fell, we saw the effort and determination she took to always get back up.
No matter how bad it was or how bad it hurt, she would always rise against the challenge. The director made sure to show she never stayed down, to show she would always rise up to meet the challenge in front of her.
This film should help encourage women to be who they want to be, not what the world tells them who they should be. Carol Danvers, aka Captain Marvel, is told in this movie she can’t fly fighter pilots in the Air Force because she is a woman, and it takes a man to fly in the cockpit.
Even if this is a heroic trope often seen in superhero movies, such as Steve Rogers being told he’d never make it into the military due to physical limitations and health problems until defying the odds and becoming who he seeks to be, seeing a female character go through this just brings the welcome added representation we’re just starting to see in the Marvel world.
As Ann Borden, one of the directors describes, “She’s not perfect as a superhero, yet she’s strong, and she’s powerful…. That doesn’t mean she’s always confident, and that doesn’t mean that she doesn’t fall. We’re built to fall.”
Again, this is something we see with many stories of leading male superheroes in the marvel universe. But to see Captain Marvel, currently the most powerful superhero seen in Marvel’s cinematic universe, means something a little more for me to see.
Honestly, in today’s society, we don’t need to be perfect—its obvious that no one is. What we need and what this movie teaches everyone is it’s okay to fall. It’s okay if sometimes you can’t handle everything thrown at you. What truly matters is how you handle what has been thrown at you, and its nice to finally see a female lead rise to the occasion to make things better.
In a world where most people love watching these action-packed superhero movies, it’s amazing it took so long to get a female-led movie in this cinematic world. Watching this movie gave me hope society will one day not blink an eye seeing a female lead just as they do men, in a fictional movie, work or even in their own personal life.