The Marvel Cinematic Universe is fast approaching its tenth anniversary with fifteen films in the can, its sixteenth Spider-Man: Homecoming fast approaching and many more to come in the foreseeable future.
What lies ahead for the MCU beyond Phase Three is currently unknown, but its continued success has had a huge impact on blockbuster filmmaking at large. It is now the highest-grossing franchise in film history, the pioneer of the cinematic shared universe and, most importantly, all of the films have been generally received positively both critically and commercially.
But no film is perfect, and certainly no franchise is either. As solid as the series is overall, there are some noticeable dents in the armour, and whilst some films have been lauded as greats of the genre others have only scraped by as “good enough”.
The problems may not be as obvious and critical as those that have plagued similar franchises, but they do highlight some of the the systemic flaws in trying to manage so many disparate films at once.
Whether they are examples of poor antagonists, preposterous plot developments, cloying set-ups for future instalments or just generally stupid scenes, the MCU has had its fair share of stumbles…