We don’t know when Captain Marvel will enter the MCU. She was supposed to randomly pop up at the end of Avengers: Age of Ultron, but was wisely axed before the role was cast. It’s possible (and likely) that she’ll show up before her solo film, but that solo movie carries huge expectations. Not only is it a new standalone series for Marvel, it’s also a standalone series featuring a woman in a landscape dominated by male characters.
Last week when I was at Pixar for The Good Dinosaur (click here for my thoughts on the footage I saw), I spoke with screenwriter Meg LeFauve, who, in addition to penning Good Dinosaur, is set to co-write Captain Marvel with Guardians of the Galaxy co-writer Nicole Perlman. Obviously, LeFauve couldn’t get into any details about what she, Perlman, and Marvel have planned for the movie, but I was curious about what attracted her to the character and why she finds Captain Marvel such an appealing superhero:
MEG LeFAUVE: Yeah, we haven’t started yet! We have not started yet. We just got the phone call to come over to Marvel. But for me personally, the wonderful thing about her and the challenge of her is going to be that she’s a female superhero. And that is awesome because she’s so powerful, and how hard is that going to be because she’s so powerful? We don’t want the Superman curse. “What’s her vulnerability?” is what we have to figure out.
While I wanted to press further, my interview time was up. Nevertheless, it’s an interesting comment to say that the gender connotations of the character are something they’re considering along with the standard issue of trying to clearly define her powers. Per Wikipedia, in the comics Captain Marvel (aka Carol Danvers), “initially possessed superhuman strength, endurance, stamina, flight, physical durability, a limited precognitive “sixth sense”, and a perfectly amalgamated human/Kree physiology that rendered her resistant to most toxins and poisons.”
So they don’t want her to be a female Superman, but I assume they also want to be careful with her weaknesses. A female superhero bears cultural burdens that a male superhero doesn’t have to worry about, and I hope that LeFauve, Perlman, Marvel, and whoever they get to direct find the right balance for the character so that any weaknesses are about the individual rather than stereotypes based on gender.
Captain Marvel opens March 8, 2019.