Crap. I hope this gets better.
That was my first impression of the premier episode.
The episode starts off with a little run-in with Iron Man by The Falcon (Sam Wilson). It’s his official first day on the team and it starts off with the Avengers being taken over by an extra-dimensional, ethereal race of beings that wants to replace everything in this universe with its dimension-conquering race. So, it’s up to The Falcon to save the Avengers that are trapped in a pocket dimension, defeat the invaders that have created copies of the Avengers (with all of their powers) and hold the line from imminent attack. Is The Falcon really ready to be an Avenger? Does he really have what it takes?
My answer: I’m not sure I care. The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes was a show that gave us a respectable group with spot on characterizations of the heroes and their villains. The thing I loved about that show was that it respected the property and viewers. When there was a threat, it felt like a real threat. When there was a mystery, it felt like a real mystery. When there was humor, it wasn’t forced and canned. From this one episode, I have to say the villains were simple and no sense of threat was ever felt. There was no mystery, just action for the sake of action. The humor was baseline and there was only one scene that actually made me chuckle. It was a scene where Sam entered a room with fragile, glass figurines and thought he had inadvertently wandered into The Black Widow’s room, only to find out that it was in fact The Hulk’s room. The Hulk walks up behind him and quietly says to Sam, “We will never speak of this. Ever.” Okay… a legitimately funny scene.
The problem with this series is readily apparent; Marvel/Disney decided that pre-13 year old crowd is the future (which they are) and that taking a more juvenile approach to the direction of their properties is the right path. I get it. Us 30-plus something guys and gals that were faithful to the industry when the rest of the world could have cared less and when the industry almost imploded during the 90’s are no longer needed. Message delivered. So, as with any demographic that is being discarded, I will support or not those properties which are worth my time and effort. I don’t begrudge them for the business decision, only that I hope it works out for them because I think they’ll begin to shed their core fans as more and more of these Marvel-lite properties are released.
Marvel’s Avengers Assemble, so far, is mediocre. I really don’t care about the direction, the characterizations or their interpretation of The Avengers at this point. Even from the standpoint of making it more closely resemble the movie franchises, it fails even in that effort as well. However, this is only one episode. I’ll review this again by the time I get to episode 6 or 7 because by then I will be “all-in” or have dropped this like a 10 lb. tumor. Like with the SyFy series, Defiance, the first episode underwhelmed me, but now is one of my favorite series on TV as it just got better and better every week – that’s my hope for this latest Avengers effort.
The jury is still out on this series, but if this were a group of 12 people sequestered to judge this first episode – it’s an 8-4 split to put this series to death.