You've Seen Endgame. Now What?
Maybe you’ve seen it, maybe you’re planning on seeing it, or maybe you have no interest in seeing it. But unless you’ve avoided all media for the past year or so, you’re aware that Avengers: Endgame came out last weekend and claimed the top spot for the weekend, the week, the month, quite possibly the year, and - given a continued strong insurance - all time.
With that kind of success, it’s a given that we’ll see more Marvel superheroes on the big screen. Sony Pictures’ Spider-Man: Far From Home is due out in two months and expected to be the last of the “Phase Three” Marvel movies. Disney and Marvel have been mostly tight lipped about what Phase Four will look like, though possible films include the long awaited Black Widow movie, a Black Panther sequel, and a third volume of Guardians of the Galaxy. So there’s no danger of fans being without new Marvel film before long. But if you need more Marvel content in the meantime, here are some tales of your favorite superhero from outside the cinematic universe to keep you occupied.
Long before Marvel was having regular success at the movies, the company was all over the small screen. Some of their TV offerings were a little shy of amazing. (Anyone remember the Generation X TV movie?) But there are also gems that might have escaped your attention. Spectacular Spider-Man is an excellent modern take on one of Marvel’s biggest names, helmed by Greg Weisman and featuring designs by Sean “Cheeks” Galloway. Wolverine and the X-Men also brings fresh life to a well-known narrative as the titular mutants follow the telepathic warnings of a Professor X stuck twenty years in their future to avoid a dystopian nightmare. If you’re up for something more retro, try the always charming Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends or the lushly animated pilot Pryde of the X-Men.
The whole interconnected Marvel cinematic universe Isn’t the only game in town for Marvel movies. We had films featuring our favorite heroes well before Tony Stark made us feel that a big screen Avengers might actually happen. As with the Marvel TV shows, the results varied, but there are some wonderful films old and new that don’t connect up with the current movie saga.
Priority number one is seeing the brilliant Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse if you haven’t already. It’s the absolute perfect balance of the fantastic and the grounded, comedy and really emotion, that makes Spidey, Marvel, and superheroes in general work so well. Going back to the earlier days of Marvel at the movies, Blade took a relatively unknown character and cast him in a solid and enjoyable vampire film back when Cap and Iron Man couldn’t get their agents to call them back. If you want to revisit the beginnings of Marvel superheroes becoming a truly dominant force at the box office, you can go back to the Raimi Spier-Man films (probably just the first two, but we won’t judge if you’re inclined to finish the trilogy) or the original Fox X-Men movies. (Again, your mileage may vary if you go past the second one.) Or see how far we’ve come by checking out the ‘90s Captain America or the never officially released Fantastic Four.
Speaking of media that’s come a long way, video games have changed a lot since the days when Spidey couldn’t attach his webs to a window or the not very good NES X-Men game was not very good. Old games can be a lot of fun, like the classic X-Men arcade game with its Pryde of the X-Men character designs and charmingly clunky “Welcome to die” dialogue. But the newer games for the home systems offer a wide variety of options for all kinds of players to spend some time in their favorite heroes’ shoes. The PS4 Spider-Man is a strong contender for the best Marvel game ever made, with high quality visuals, an open world New York to explore, well designed controls, compelling story, and treasure trove of unlockables. If you’re looking for something more family friendly or you need the majority of the the Marvel universe as playable characters, you’ll want to check out the LEGO Marvel games .
Go back to the source material to see what’s been changed for the movies, learn more about your favorite characters, or just enjoy a good story. While it’s not an ideal starting point for newcomers to Marvel Comics due to its expansive cast of heroes, villains, celestials, and a skeleton with breasts, Infinity Gauntlet is a good comparison piece to the last two Avengers films. Not every movie has a direct counterpart in comics; the sprawling crossover Civil War has only some similarities to the Captain America movie of the same name. There’s a much closer correlation between the second Cap movie and the “Winter Soldier” storyline in the acclaimed Ed Brubaker run of Captain America. Most of the films draw inspiration from many parts of the characters’ lengthy histories. Black Panther fans can find the movie’s roots in everything from the original Lee and Kirby stories to Christopher Priest’s take on the character to the most recent Coates and Stelfreeze comics. Spider-Man’s movie adventures are similarly pulled from a number of sources. If you’re just looking for some excellent comics with the webslinger, track down the love song to Peter Parker’s early days Untold Tales of Spider-Man.
If you have your own favorite Marvel media from outside the cinematic universe or you’re looking for more stories about a character we didn’t mention, let us know in the comments.