Marvel has been mired in a lot of controversies this year.
From an ill-fated partnership with one of world’s largest defense contractors (canceled after an intense backlash from fans and creators alike) to defending Nazis (yikes) to promoting a man who practiced yellowface to Editor-in-Chief (yikes), the comic publisher has walked into one PR nightmare after another.
Oh, and this was all after a Marvel exec said that the explanation for a recent slump in comic book sales was due to the publisher releasing books with more diverse superheroes.
However, as the garbage fire of 2017 wraps up, it seems that Marvel is determined to get back in its fans’ good graces. How?
By releasing an animated film starring the very same diverse superheroes it once blamed for a slump in sales. The irony isn’t lost on anyone, but that’s okay!
Marvel has a really diverse group of heroes, and it makes sense to animate them and draw in a whole new generation of fans.
Plus, representation is awesome. The squeal of excitement I let out when I saw the exclusive news on BuzzFeed was 100 percent genuine, even if I find myself side-eyeing everything Marvel does, all the time.
[bctt tweet=”Marvel will bring representation to the screen in a big way.” username=”wearethetempest”]
Marvel Rising: Secret Warriors is a feature-length, animated film. It will debut in late 2018, preceded by six, four-minute digital shorts following Spider-Gwen (under her new moniker, Ghost-Spider, voiced by Dove Cameron).
Who else is in the new generation of superheroes featured in this film?
Here’s the roster: Ms. Marvel, a.k.a. Kamala Khan, Marvel’s first Muslim superhero to get an ongoing series (voiced by Kathreen Khavari); Miss America, a.k.a. America Chavez, Marvel’s first Latinx-American LGBTQ character (voiced by Cierra Ramirez); Quake (voiced by Chloe Bennett, from Agents of SHIELD); Squirrel Girl (voiced by Milana Vayntrub, who will also play the character in the live action New Warriors, debuting in 2018); Inferno (voiced by Teen Wolf and Jane the Virgin star Tyler Posey); Patriot (voiced by Kamil McFadden).
The film will also feature Captain Marvel (voiced by Kim Raver), animal companions Tippy Toe and Lockjaw (both voiced by Dee Bradley Baker), Exile (voiced by Booboo Stewart), Gloria “Glory” Grant (voiced by Skai Jackson), villain Hala (voiced by Ming-Na Wen), and Captain George Stacy, Gwen’s dad (voiced by Steven Weber).
[bctt tweet=”It looks like Marvel Rising: Secret Warriors will feature one of the most diverse casts ever.” username=”wearethetempest”]
This list of characters and voice actors is a doozy.
It looks like Marvel Rising: Secret Warriors will feature one of the most diverse casts we’ve seen in an animated series, which is a massive turnaround from Marvel’s previous claims that diversity damaged the company’s sales.
Viewers should still take note that the digital shorts preceding the film will feature a white, blonde character — which feels like an Orange is the New Black-style misdirect to draw in fans who might otherwise turn their noses up at such a diverse show.
Once they’re in, they won’t be able to help falling in love with other fan favorites, like Ms. Marvel – who fans have been asking to see in a film for ages.
One thing is for sure: Marvel Rising: Secret Warriors will bring representation to the screen in a big way. The ability to see yourself in the media you consume is so huge.
Marvel, for all of its terrible decisions and massive missteps, seems to at least be figuring that out.
[bctt tweet=”Seeing yourself in the media you consume is so huge.” username=”wearethetempest
Like I said: representation is awesome.
Whether or not Marvel is trying to get back in fans’ good graces, we can’t discredit that. It’s super exciting to see these characters making their way out of their comic panels and onto our screens.
Since the digital shorts and the feature film are all animated, kids will get to see themselves in these characters, too. And that’s some of the best news to come out of Marvel (or in general) all year.
For more details and insights from the cast and creators, check out the trailer for Marvel Rising: Secret Warriors below.