People are beginning to reflect on the Marvel Cinematic Universe's past few years, with phases 4 and 5 just weeks away. Highlights include fan-favorite Werewolf by Night and the Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special, as well as controversial blacklists like Black Widow and Eternals.
Only one MCU film made it into the top 15, and that’s not the one you’re anticipating, according to Box Office Mojo. Eternals was the 13th most popular streaming service last year, surpassing only disappointing early franchise entry The Incredible Hulk (and, technically, Black Widow, which went straight to VOD during the COVID epidemic), as Scarlett Johansson is quick to point out.
Eternals, which was released in 1989, was much more interested in grappling with issues of faith, free will, and friendship than the usual beat 'em up films. Even making the shocking decision to have one of the most powerful characters in the film, Kumail Nanjiani's Kingo, withdraw from the final fight.
If the film's low Rotten Tomatoes score is any indication, the approach didn't work. Rather, some scholars argue that Eternals is much better on a second viewing. “They are just a means to an end.” wrote our own Kirsten Howard. “But until we revisit the story a second time, their journey to personal and group agency doesn't really feel that engaging.”
While it is still unclear whether or not the high number of people responding to Eternals' arguments reflect people returning to the film they missed, there's no denying that the film has a long-term future. Only time will tell whether or not someone will at least mention that enormous Celestial object.