Ok, you’ve had Danielle’s review, which was awesome! She really hit a lot of the stuff I tend to gloss over.
This bitch, here, wants to talk plot, context and comic canon.
I also want to start out with, I loved Captain America: Civil War. Hooray to the Russo Brothers for creating a Civil War storyline that didn’t make me just stomp out of the theater in disgust. Because I loathe that storyline in the comics with all my heart and soul. And I’ve already ranted about that here.
Ok, so I’ll just tag this SPOILERS BELOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
There, that should be enough warning.
Right, so we should all be familiar with the plot. There are the Sokovian Accords, and the UN/US Government wants the Avengers to sign it. Tony says yes. Steve says no.
First things I liked. I loved all the Bucky stuff. Quelle surprise, right?
The first fight scene, the scene where Zemo is reading the control phrases and he’s fighting against it for all he’s worth, Steve pulling him out of the water, the scene with the industrial vice, which is a WAY different context than how it looked in the trailer. Marvel can be homophobic all they want. Bisexual Steve Rogers is my head canon, even if it isn’t with Bucky, but I can see it.
Also Chadwick Boseman does a fantastic job as T’Challa. The kid they got to play Spider-Man is perfect. Even more perfect than Andrew Garfield. And Marissa Tomei as hot Aunt Mae was great. And I really liked Paul Rudd, he did a great job.
The fight scenes, all of them, were beautifully choreographed. The special FX were great. I really did enjoy the movie.
But I am a pedantic nerd.
Up first is what they leave out of the script during that scene in the boardroom with Ross. Everything Ross blames them for (save Ultron) was going to happen whether they were there or not, and they stopped it from getting worse. And Tony does in fact state that in the comics, in spite of signing. The sole exception is Ultron, and well, Ross is giving a pass to the guy responsible for that little fuck up because he’s agreed to sign.
In the comics, Tony tells the committee outright that had they not intervened in everything (and in the comics Ultron is not Tony’s fault, looking at you Hank Pym) things would have been so much worse. Loki and the Ch’tauri in control of everything (and let us not forget that the LAST governing body with control of SHIELD/The Avengers wanted to NUKE MANHATTAN in the middle of that little debacle). The Helicarriers falling out of the sky could have been Hydra literally decimating the population of the earth and taking it over. And I’m just focusing on shit in America with ensemble casts here. Without the Avengers’ intervention, Ultron would have caused the extinction of life on earth.
Ok, next problem, who the fuck puts Ross in charge of anything? The man has anger management issues like whoa and gets obsessed WAY too easily, as proven in eleventy-billion years of comics canon and the Incredible Hulk movie. Granted, I am very much looking forward to when he becomes Red Hulk.
Thirdly, until very recently at the very least the US government, and they hint that the governments of several other nations as well, has been lousy with HYDRA. You know, the guys who didn’t think Hitler was going quite far enough? The guys who nearly succeeded in taking over everything? What are the odds that A. they’ve actually gotten rid of all the HYDRA in key government spots, B. that those HYDRA left have given up wanting to take over, and C. that one of them could wrangle themselves into control of whatever body is given jurisdiction over the Avengers?
Have I given you enough reasons as to why the Accords were a terrible plan?
And that’s without even mentioning that the US has never paid any fucking attention to UN Resolutions in the history of our “support” of it. For fuck’s sake, could we hire some history or poli sci majors as consultants?
And like Cap says, yes, the Avengers could use some oversight, but this isn’t it.
Next up in things that didn’t work for me.
Steve and Sharon. I don’t hate Sharon. But, this is problematic as fuck for many reasons. 1. Peggy just fucking died.
2. Sharon has grown up her whole life hearing about how wonderful Steve is and can recite his speech, which creates a power differential.
3. They work/ed for the same agency, where she was an agent and he was Captain Fucking America so massive power differential.
4. Peggy just fucking died (important enough I thought it bore mentioning twice).
5. She was spying on him, yes, on orders, but still.
6. She’s Peggy’s niece.
So, yes, I know it’s comics canon. I hate it. Plus the actress and Chris Evans have very little chemistry. I was unmoved by the kiss. I was a ball of emotion throughout this whole movie, and I could not muster up the wherewithal to like or even hate the kiss, it just didn’t do it for me.
Which brings me to Scarlet Witch and Vision. Also comics canon. Also way creepier in live action. Especially with Paul Bettany playing Vision against Elizabeth Olsen’s Scarlet Witch. Just… nearly every woman I know shudders at that. It doesn’t come off well on screen with the vision played by an actor so much older than the actress. Plus he acts all paternal, and I’m not getting started on Tony locking her in the facility for her own good. Just no.
And the big one, Tony saying, “So was I,” when Steve says Bucky is his friend. Ok, first, dude, it’s only been a couple years as opposed to Steve growing up with Bucky all his life. Second, you have been a raging dick to him in a good 75% of your social interactions. And I think I’m being generous here.
So, at the end of the first Avengers film, we had that moment where you felt like Tony and Steve’s relationship had really changed, had grown.
And at the beginning of Ultron, we see that it really has not. Or more to the point Whedon decided to ignore all that character development for more adolescent sniping. Go him.
And again at the beginning of this film. Yes, Tony looks more rough. He’s obviously in a hard way. But he and Steve are not, in fact, bros, even at the beginning of the film.
So that did not have near the impact for me that Steve dropping the shield and walking away, or the look on Bucky’s face when they’re watching the footage of him killing Tony’s parents. Or Zemo’s confession to T’Challa. Or the death of King T’Chaka, who we see alive for less than five minutes. Or Widow letting Steve and Bucky go. Or, or, or… I can think of a dozen moments in that movie that had more emotional weight than that line uttered by Tony, and some of them even involve Paul fucking Rudd.
So let’s see if they can actually hold on to the character development from the end with the letter from Steve to Tony “Stank” (I giggled) when they pick it up in the next film.
I really did like the movie, but man, it could have been so much better.
I definitely don’t think really think it’s a serious contender for best of the MCU. I think that honor goes to one of the first two Captain America movies. It’s not the worst either, I think Ultron has that honor, at least right now, because I still haven’t seen Ant-Man.
Coming up I’ll be writing a response to Ben Kuchera’s post “Someone Help Tony Stark.”