Why the Marvel Cinematic Universe feels empty

  • Published on Oct 15, 2018
  • What makes a fictional universe good? In this requested episode of Overrated, Vox’s Phil Edwards explores the past and present of fictional universes to try to figure it out.
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    Want to read more? Check out Sean Howe’s book about Marvel: www.amazon.com/Marvel-Comics-Untold-Sean-Howe/dp/0061992119

    And explore Tommy’s Universe:

    Fictional universes and crossovers have been around long before the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The Green Hornet radio show had a crossover with the Lone Ranger that kicked off the trend. In comics, the Marvel Universe started long before Stan Lee was at the helm.

    But these crossovers have a problem: They can privilege business relationships ahead of storytelling immersion and really interesting universes. As the Tommy Westphall Universe shows, crossovers often become a map of business decisions rather than of integrated fictional stories, and that leads to worse stories.

    This problem plagues the MCU as well. When Marvel engineers crossovers, they aren’t thinking about a universe transformed by superheroes - they just want more quips, explosions, and cash. Or at least that’s Edwards’s argument - do you think the MCU works?
    Overrated is a series that takes a look at the things we all know - the books, the trends, and the ideas that have become iconic - and answers the question: “Why is this so famous"?
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Comments • 22 696

  • Vox
    Vox  5 months ago +918

    You know that one font every comic book uses? Phil Edwards explains where it came from, and how it became so enduring: bit.ly/2EoOE6a

  • Derp 360
    Derp 360 Hour ago

    You monster dont u ever talk about them like that boy

  • Prasanna Patil
    Prasanna Patil 2 hours ago

    This video is wrong from core... See this reply.. usclip.net/video/qYjovWomA70/video.html

  • Aqhbar Shaiful
    Aqhbar Shaiful 3 hours ago

    its not, you stupid.

  • M. Talk
    M. Talk 11 hours ago

    The Like to Dislike ratio says it all.......Perfectly balanced as all things should be....

  • Matt Witt
    Matt Witt 19 hours ago

    Your overrated

  • coopdejoure
    coopdejoure 20 hours ago

    Now I see how this got over 100k dislikes. You dont know anything about die hard fans, universe development or character relationship building.

  • dgeez123z
    dgeez123z Day ago

    Have another downvote, vox is garbage

  • comic fan
    comic fan Day ago

    In film God was over here defending this video why am I not surprised he knows absolutely nothing about character development

  • Swishajay
    Swishajay 2 days ago


  • Oscar Cardenas
    Oscar Cardenas 2 days ago

    Almost 10 minutes of nothing. What a bait geez

  • Gabriel M
    Gabriel M 2 days ago

    Why does this video feel... empty?

  • Learn, Apply and Educate!

    I too think it's heavily overrated but not because of these. Anyway, do Marvel Animated Universe is underrated next.

  • 3 Dollars and 50 Cents
    3 Dollars and 50 Cents 3 days ago +1

    Best Vox video by far

  • Lewis Mugo
    Lewis Mugo 3 days ago

    wow mot much about marvel, and star wars marvel cross over? damn

  • Paulafan5
    Paulafan5 3 days ago

    It feels empty because... why? Still didn't really answer that question.

  • Dj Bloor
    Dj Bloor 3 days ago

    I get what he's saying. And it's a sensible issue to think of, BUT no movie viewer really cares about it being a problem.

  • TayterTots ASMR
    TayterTots ASMR 3 days ago

    I would care if aquaman was on the poster. I know about every character in depth so yes it would make difference. Most people do.

  • Normal Guy
    Normal Guy 4 days ago

    I normally like Vox but it feels like you guys don't really understand anything about being a comic fan.

  • Normal Guy
    Normal Guy 4 days ago

    Did I just hear a man say that Fox's X-Men universe was better than the MCU?

  • Carlos Vannoni
    Carlos Vannoni 4 days ago

    Screw you vox

    Enough said

  • HarrBearTnt
    HarrBearTnt 5 days ago +1

    You know I really used to like Vox but then they became way to leftist and just criticize things they shouldnt

  • Jason Hulett
    Jason Hulett 6 days ago

    This video felt empty.

  • Max Kafka
    Max Kafka 6 days ago

    The host is clearly expressing a cis, heteronormative, patriarchal perspective. This video is LITERALLY RAPE!!!

  • Elliot
    Elliot 6 days ago

    I feel like captain marvel has really helped with some continuity tho

  • frabsurdity
    frabsurdity 7 days ago


  • Sunglass Hut
    Sunglass Hut 8 days ago

    This is so ironic because the MCU is thriving while this video is what feels so empty.

  • Olivia Sanchez
    Olivia Sanchez 10 days ago +1

    If anything this video is empty.
    All the points are loosely connected and don’t make sense. Marvel does have some flaws and even as a fan I admit that but none of the flaws that should have been addressed, were.

  • Jack Black
    Jack Black 10 days ago

    Lol so many triggered marvel fans. They're probably crying in their parents basements over this video.

  • This Dude Actually Said

    how do i choose between mutants and humans unless either one?

  • This Dude Actually Said

    really? because at the end of Logan all anybody knew of the X Men were comics which even he said were all bullshit

  • Azwar A.
    Azwar A. 11 days ago +1

    the most disliked video i've ever watched !!!!

  • greenturtle gaming
    greenturtle gaming 11 days ago

    This vid is empty

  • Mauricio Vargas Sánchez

    Come on! Tell me more than 10 movies made in Hollywood that are good and weren't made for the sake of 💰

  • Lamar Davis
    Lamar Davis 12 days ago

    The MCU’s popularity and profit margins prove this video is nothingness.

  • Logan Barry
    Logan Barry 12 days ago

    i want you to make another video on marvel. i like all these sweet marvel fans cry their hurt hearts out

  • 2002 Pontiac Montana
    2002 Pontiac Montana 12 days ago

    I'd be fine not seeing another one of these movies ever again.

  • Nutsilica
    Nutsilica 14 days ago

    Cross-overs are as old as comics themselves. Newspaper strips did it all the time. Oftentimes Vox has videos that are full of wrong facts.

  • Nutsilica
    Nutsilica 14 days ago

    He uses a story about Mork knowing Fonzie because Gary Marshall’s son told him Fonzie should meet an alien, as an example of how it is about the money, not the writing. Making a show of your son’s idea is not about money!

    • Nutsilica
      Nutsilica 14 days ago

      The public loves cross-overs, therefore writers would like them too. The Vox writer doesn’t realize that can also be good for the money and the writing. Ancient writings have cross-overs!

  • Joshua Boswell
    Joshua Boswell 14 days ago

    Marvel movies are appalling abominations. They’ve completely destroyed the genre.

  • CraisenGaming
    CraisenGaming 14 days ago

    Omfg there’s so many dislikes, but I can see why and I think most of the movies are bass besides like the new spider man and infinity war

  • Exdiamonds
    Exdiamonds 14 days ago


  • Justin Cheng
    Justin Cheng 14 days ago

    What the heck this is so wrong

  • xxk hdn
    xxk hdn 15 days ago


  • lazyidiotofthemonth
    lazyidiotofthemonth 15 days ago

    You did this over Apple?

  • Zealous Zombae
    Zealous Zombae 17 days ago +1

    listen, i hate the mcu but at least i can say why i hate it pls justify yourself better jesus

  • Unseated
    Unseated 17 days ago

    90 percent of the video is poorly explained background knowledge the other 10 percent is poorly explained nothingness

  • Mariya Vatova
    Mariya Vatova 17 days ago

    What about shield vs hydra. Thats bigger than just the heroes and merch aspect.

  • Izaac7000 ´
    Izaac7000 ´ 17 days ago +1

    all the marvel fanboys in the comments XD

  • donna cannon
    donna cannon 17 days ago

    Ah yes because it's not a crossover when iron man is in homecoming it's only an Easter egg

  • Century
    Century 17 days ago

    Marvel fans disliked the video but I agree.

  • Jelani Wood
    Jelani Wood 18 days ago

    Not to kick you guys while you're down anymore but here's what I think this video was trying to say but this video actually said a thing usclip.net/video/u6Bq_jK0Z1Y/video.html

  • J R
    J R 18 days ago

    Full disclosure, I am a comic book nerd and a marvel movie fan. That being said, I think the MCU has had its major flaws. I have watched agreed with videos and articles that take on a similar viewpoint to this video, with different topics to address MCU Flaws, and agreed.
    Wrong or right is irrelevant after someone watches this video.
    You got your view. Some points are unfounded, others not given any legitimate reasoning or context. This video is an opinion piece through and through. A poorly made one at that. Purely based upon, the points made that try to connect an intentional crossover with decades of history to a one off of a 70s tv show. Claiming story is thrown to the side just to see characters side by side. While the MCU has its faults, none are accurately represented in this video. This is 100 percent clickbait. Trying to link Vox to the most popular movie series across the globe. You have achieved but two things with this video, Vox: A dislike and a bad taste in my mouth for your future products.

  • Brijith Andrews
    Brijith Andrews 18 days ago

    Marvel is my life, you kill it you kill me too

  • The Man With A Million Names

    Of course there's something missing. There'll always be something missing, ya cheeky bastard.

  • Peter Love
    Peter Love 20 days ago

    Good ol clickbait.

  • akshay Viswambharan
    akshay Viswambharan 20 days ago

    Hahaha... I'm overwhelmed by the dislikes you got...you deserved

  • Will Reading
    Will Reading 20 days ago +1

    Wtf is your criteria for 'too many characters'? They have all been very well established and are based off the thousands of comic characters that exist in marvel. You're fkn dumb

  • Khul Golgotha
    Khul Golgotha 21 day ago


  • Dimitrije6500 :D
    Dimitrije6500 :D 21 day ago

    Why does Vox still exist, at this point its common knowledge that they just spread misinformation

  • Eli Jaques
    Eli Jaques 21 day ago +1

    This dude kept hinting at this perfect solution to fixing the Mcu's problems but he never really told us it, this was just a confusing mess of random facts trying to lead itself to a point it never reached, also the x men universe is hella confusing because of the way they mess with time, the mcu isn't perfect but it's much more clearly defined

    VISHNU PRIYA / vp 21 day ago


  • DTB
    DTB 22 days ago

    "What makes a fictional universe good?"
    Well, the audience knows the answer. Why don't you seem to?

  • James Leandre
    James Leandre 23 days ago

    So the X-Men universe has logic but yet every 2 or 3 X-Men films they need to re-write and scrap the continuity of the universe... Vox please keep your illmanaged opinions to yourself and all your hipster friends.

  • Pauline Montagna
    Pauline Montagna 23 days ago


  • Incognito Mode
    Incognito Mode 23 days ago

    This is the first video I have seen from you guys. If all your videos are like this, then you might as well rename your channel to “buzzfeed 2”

  • Dead Memes
    Dead Memes 23 days ago


    Shut up

  • Fascia B
    Fascia B 23 days ago

    It feels empty become it so drawn out and people are loosing interest in this storyline. Even the actors are tired of this same story.

  • Son0fHobs
    Son0fHobs 23 days ago

    This is the most overrated video I've ever seen with 3x the amount of dislikes! Glad I glanced at the comments first!

  • CactusTea
    CactusTea 25 days ago +1

    Like for SpiderMan
    Reply for SuperMan

  • NIgHTMaReFortyTwo
    NIgHTMaReFortyTwo 26 days ago

    lol there are so many normals with zero taste in this comments section. They aren't your films, why are you all so quick to jump to their defense? They're bland piles of dross for children.

  • Bardo boy515
    Bardo boy515 26 days ago

    bit awkward...

  • Noah Slav8805
    Noah Slav8805 26 days ago

    This guy wants to destroy Marvel Memes. I will throw Thanos brick at u

  • Noah Slav8805
    Noah Slav8805 26 days ago

    This guy supports T-Series and liked DC

  • hi there
    hi there 26 days ago

    *how is it empty tho*

  • Sekope Tauyavu
    Sekope Tauyavu 26 days ago +1

    This video is so empty....

  • balram sharan
    balram sharan 27 days ago

    First vox video which was so boring.

  • Anime Reviews
    Anime Reviews 27 days ago

    8:22 really? have you not watched civil war?!?!?!?! and in infinity war the fact that there is a 50% chance that i am dead, does make me feel involved

  • diane cry-anne nguyen
    diane cry-anne nguyen 27 days ago

    me watching this: am i having a stroke? because i don't understand any of this
    *reads comments*
    me: oh thank god

  • Spencer Aurand
    Spencer Aurand 27 days ago

    This video need for dislikes.

  • Eliza Kim
    Eliza Kim 28 days ago +1

    It's true. I think the Xmen had more deeper social issues tied with the series than Avengers had. Same with Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight triology. However, if you are talking about the movie quality itself, then I would argue that the Avengers is much much much better. The series are better connected, makes more sense, and the script is well written.

  • marcpatrol
    marcpatrol 29 days ago

    This guy's an idiot

  • Fahira Salsabila
    Fahira Salsabila Month ago

    one time that vox fails us

    THEM0J0MAN Month ago

    I wish I could do something more than dislike the video to show my distaste

  • fuckemweball007
    fuckemweball007 Month ago

    What a hater

  • Wayde Robson
    Wayde Robson Month ago

    So, Red Apple cigarettes is "cool"... but the MCU is empty? Because... it's too big?

  • Zach Booth
    Zach Booth Month ago

    O O F

  • Mico Usana
    Mico Usana Month ago

    The only vox video that I disliked

  • Devesh Bajracharya
    Devesh Bajracharya Month ago

    This video is full of crap... 💩

  • Justin Eaton
    Justin Eaton Month ago

    X-men all the way :)

  • Dylan Tierney
    Dylan Tierney Month ago

    Fock off

  • Taylor Xluvx
    Taylor Xluvx Month ago

    Why did pee-wee just make a video for no reason but to gather views, and pretty much everything said was bullshit

  • P McFadden
    P McFadden Month ago

    infinity wars was like the royal rumble of movies.

  • yonaka秋
    yonaka秋 Month ago

    I had been thinking about this for a long time . Good !

    • hi there
      hi there 26 days ago

      but he didn't even say how it was empty and he probably didn't even watch any movies cuz the points he made make no sense whatsoever

  • Literal_Gamer15
    Literal_Gamer15 Month ago +2

    Thank you for your steaming pile of clickbait vox

  • kekieklokkie
    kekieklokkie Month ago

    why does liberal and sjw channels more often than not a clickbait.

  • Denny
    Denny Month ago

    This video literally hod no point

  • SSJ K-Dots Sanctum
    SSJ K-Dots Sanctum Month ago

    103K dislikes are the fans who can't accept any form of criticism. 6:44 I don't agree with the Aquaman thing now comicbook fans will notice but casual moviegoers wouldn't care. The only good X Men films are logan and Deadpool

  • Tommy Anderson
    Tommy Anderson Month ago

    And this is why everyone hates vox

  • TheColdCutCombo WithTomato

    I just don’t understand what your complaint is exactly

    • TheColdCutCombo WithTomato
      TheColdCutCombo WithTomato Month ago

      And don’t get me wrong I do believe the mcu has deeper issues, but I don’t think the right ones were addressed here