6 Unique Marvel Shows Unlike the Rest of the MCU
Here are six Marvel shows that offer up a unique experience unlike the other titles the MCU has put out.
Marvel has absolutely come a long way since its days of just being remanded to the realm of glossy, colorful comics. The fictional literature once regarded as nothing but a simple novelty to keep kids busy has become one of the biggest cash grabs both on the big and small screen, with the MCU leading the way by a lot.
The evolution of the franchise into a workable shared universe has put out a ton of great titles that always seem to outdo themselves when compared to the stacked competition of the superhero genre. But there are some projects the MCU has put out that are very different from what some would expect.
If fans are interested in watching remarkable stories from treasured comic book characters unfold, here are six Marvel shows that offer up a unique experience unlike the other titles the MCU has put out.
Some would argue that at one point, Daredevil was one of the best raw and gritty crime dramas the streaming world had to offer, with some excellent martial arts action not seen on the small screen in some time. The fight choreography was as well-crafted as its incredibly enthralling narrative of the one blind man that sees the truth and his quest to clean up the crime-ridden city he calls home. Charlie Cox gives a criminally underrated performance as Matt Murdock that should have won dozens of awards.
The show doesn't’ rely on big spectacles or easter egg-driven fanfare but instead is mostly story-driven, making it easy for viewers to forget they are watching a show based on a Marvel superhero. This one is definitely geared toward the older fanbase and is defiantly the perfect choice for both the people that love everything comic-book-related or those that aren’t really into the MCU like most folks. Simply put, Daredevil offers the best of both worlds, and it's unfortunate to speculate that there may never be another Marvel show done in this manner. Thankfully there are three seasons and a season of The Defenders to enjoy, not to mention some significant cameos in Spider-Man: No Way Home and Hawkeye.
If Multiverse shenanigans, time-traveling escapes, and inter-dimensional heists are something viewers are looking for, then the God of Mischief has absolutely answered their prayers. Loki offers up an intriguing perspective and insight on what would happen if one of the MCU’s most feared villains saw the error in his ways and the struggle through time and space he must endure to find redemption when everything from his world is turned upside down with the discovery of the TVA and Tiem keepers. It also cleverly discusses issues dealing with the pros and cons of giving up control to a higher power, adding to the overall experience.
Besides its riveting narrative, the series also has beautiful locations, a star-studded cast, stunning visuals, fight scenes, and some absolutely amazing Loki variants, making the critically acclaimed affair with an impressive Rotten Tomatoes score a definite must-watch. The series is an incredibly entertaining, fun-filled ride that perfectly sets up some pretty crucial storylines, including what goes down in Spider-Man: No Way Home and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, as well as introducing some brilliant new characters, including epic villains and the instantly lovable Miss Minutes voiced by Tara Strong.
WandaVision was the first Disney+ series, and it makes sense the MCU would go in a very unexpected direction for its first official small-screen endeavor. The story of Wanda Maximoff takes an interesting turn after the events of Avengers: Endgame and is an alluring mystery, unlike any other comic book-based adaptation anyone has ever seen. The critically acclaimed, Emmy nominated series takes audiences on a mind-bending journey through the evolution of the sitcom where nothing is as it seems and several of everyone’s favorite characters, alive and dead, make an appearance.
But what really makes it a must-see is the way it blends Wanda’s tragic story of loss into the mystery while also offering up her origin story. In addition, it brilliantly introduces some new fan favorites as well. If, for any reason at all, people should give WandaVision a chance, it's because it is sincerely one of the MCU's most ambitious titles and shows off the successful potential of taking Marvel characters in bold new directions.
The Punisher is one of the rare Marvel shows that deals with an individual that essentially has no powers to speak of, driven by vengeance and rage with a fatal fondness for firearms. But what honestly makes it stand out is the way it deals with poignant issues, including gun violence, PTSD, war, and loss. Jon Bernthal’s magnificent run as Frank Castle showcases the visceral mayhem the character constantly endures perfectly balanced with the anguish of a man who has lost everything that matters to him, his family.
The show, not meant for the younger fanbase, offers mature viewers a powerful, hard-hitting narrative that is entertaining and doesn't hold anything back. It goes places most properties avoid, and it definitely showcases one of the darkest sides of the MCU. While they were definitely worthwhile endeavors, Disney+ originals such as Hawkeye and The Falcon and the Winter Soldier wish their shows could have been this gritty, dark, and action-packed.
Moon Knight accomplishes with ease what some may have thought impossible, which is to expand an already oversaturated shared universe with yet another set of immortal beings and somehow manages to do so in a way that makes the MCU way more exciting. The format is absolutely intuitive and will instantly give vibes to viewers that will remind them of flicks like Total Recall, Fight Club, and Memento.
The race against the bad guy across exotic locales to find the relic before the world is destroyed Indiana Jones-style plays perfectly parallel to the mystery behind the split personalities battling it out between Steven Grant and Marc Spector. But The way it surgically ties Egyptian culture and history into the engaging story adds significant value to the overall experience.
It also has to be said that a lot of the credit for Moon Knight being a worthy watch with tons of replay value is the masterful performance from Oscar Isaac, as well as the drop-dead fantastic turn from Maya Calamawy. And it's undeniable that Ethan Hawke was born to play the bad guy with his outstanding run as Arthur Harrow.
The entire purpose of the What If...? series is to boldly go where other titles in the shared universe cannot. The alternative versions of some of MCU’s most favored events see a slew of new characters and events unfold, leading to a cataclysmic climax some could argue is almost on par with Endgame. From Killmonger saving Tony Stark before Iron Man, to Captain Britain helming the shield, to Marvel Zombies, seeing everyone’s favorite heroes and villains get a second chance with a fresh new story makes this Disney+ powerhouse an ideal companion to the greater lore of the massive franchise.
The animation style is slick and effective at conveying character emotions which helps make them feel like a unique extension of a larger narrative. The action sequences, while altered for the format, are on par with what fans have come to expect in these spectacles. Several characters from the live-action versions lend their vocal talents for their respective characters, while the newcomers do a stellar job of bringing the rest of the players to life. Overall, Marvel one hundred percent flexes its creative muscles with What If...? and, it is without a doubt a one-of-a-kind ordeal MCU fans will want to experience over and over again.
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Very well written. Keep up the good work!
Niche topic & fresh perspectives