Marvel’s Women of Power
On March 3, Marvel Games and Marvel Publishing launched “Women of Power” initiatives, updating and celebrating many of their female heroes and villains. Games featuring new or improved characters include Marvel Contest of Champions, Marvel Future Fight, Marvel Heroes 2016 and LEGO Marvel’s the Avengers. In addition, Marvel hired artists to revamp many of their comic book covers to add a new flare.
Last spring, Marvel received some backlash concerning their lack of Black Widow products after the premiere of “Avengers: Age of Ultron.” One particular complaint was the absence of the heroine in sets of action figures. “The Avengers” star Mark Ruffalo even spoke out in a tweet, requesting more Black Widow merchandise for his daughters and nieces. Around the same time, a former Marvel employee explained the shortage of female-centered products, saying “That’s not why Disney bought us. They already have the girls’ market on lockdown.”
Possibly in response to the criticism, Marvel announced that they were planning to put a “big focus” on women this month and throughout the summer. As “Captain America: Civil War” approaches, Marvel really took the opportunity to prove that they value their female characters. It’s an excellent move on their part, since the movie includes the powerful heroines Black Widow and Scarlet Witch. Even if they do have the girls’ market cornered, an increase in products designed for females would undoubtedly help their sales.
While this is definitely a step in the right direction overall, some of the specific updates are exciting. The new characters in LEGO Marvel’s the Avengers, Marvel Contest of Champions, Marvel Future Fight and Spider-Man Unlimited include Captain Marvel, Moonstone, Poundcakes, Ms. Marvel, She-Hulk, X-23, Proxima Midnight and Silk. Marvel Avengers Academy, along with some of the other games, also has new special quests involving the heroines. Peter Phillips of Marvel Entertainment said, “By featuring these stories and characters throughout a single month, we’ve lined up one the most exciting events in the history of Marvel games.”
If traditional comic books are more your style, the new variants of comics like “Black Widow,” “Guardians of the Galaxy,” “Daredevil” and “Scarlet Witch” might be more appealing. Marvel hired fantastic artists like Emanuela Luppachino, Kevin Wada and Annie Wu to redesign the 25 comic books. For the full list, take a look at the article by Comic Book Resources.
Since this month is, after all, Women’s History Month, Marvel couldn’t have chosen a finer time to celebrate some of their amazing characters. The additions to their comics, games and merchandise are a great way for the company to show their support for their female fans. As the year moves forward, fans have a lot to look forward to, including “Captain America: Civil War” in May. Hopefully, Marvel chooses to continue incorporating more female characters into their products even after the “Women of Power” promotion ends.