The latest trailer for the Ant-Man sequel, Ant-Man and The Wasp, was released just a week ago and the timing couldn’t be more perfect. Everyone currently has the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe on their minds since Avengers: Infinity War broke box office records all over the world to rave reviews from both critics and the general movie-going populace alike. The trailer itself does look and feel a whole lot like the first Ant-Man film. It looks good and the filmmakers will use Ant-Man and Wasp’s ability to enlarge and shrink things creatively throughout the film. Suffice to say, I am looking forward to Ant-Man and The Wasp when it releases in July.
Unfortunately, while the timing of the trailer is great as fans will gobble anything part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe now, I don’t think Ant-Man and The Wasp will light up the box office, which is pretty much what happened with the original Ant-Man film. The first film made around $519 million worldwide, which is nothing to sneeze at. But, if you compare that number to the other films in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it is on the low side. If you rank Ant-Man’s box office take and adjust it for inflation, it’s second to the last in the list. The only film that did worse is The Incredible Hulk!
What makes Ant-Man’s comparatively low numbers is it was released right in the middle of Phase 2 and Phase 3. You can kind of forgive Thor, Captain America: The First Avenger and even the first Iron Man not raking in massive amounts of ticket sales a decade ago because the Marvel Cinematic Universe was an untested experiment and they had yet to prove that superhero films were the latest craze. But the first Ant-Man was released after all of that, after they’ve established they can make fantastic films. So, why did Ant-Man did poorly at the box office compared to other Marvel films and, with that being said, why do I think Ant-Man and The Wasp won’t be that big ticket sales-wise?
In my opinion, it’s not Ant-Man’s fault. It’s the fault of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s film release schedule. In fact, you can place the blame on the fact that Ant-Man will have to go right after another Avengers film. My theory is it’s because Ant-Man always has to follow an Avengers film that the diminutive superhero’s films look so… how can I say this nicely… unimportant. The Avengers are hobbling Ant-Man’s films unintentionally because of this.
Let’s go look at Avengers: Age of Ultron. It may not have been the greatest of the Marvel films, in my opinion, but it was still pretty good. Even if this wasn’t the first time Iron Man, Captain America, Thor and the rest of the Avengers teamed up, there was still a feeling of scale to the story. The entire world was in danger of Ultron as the malevolent AI’s plan was to wipe of humanity to save the planet.
Now, let’s go look at the plot for the first Ant-Man. Hank Pym, the creator of the Pym Particle which enables humans to shrink, hires professional thief Scott Lang to steal the prototype Yellowjacket suit developed by his former partner, Darren Cross. Pym gives Lang the Ant-Man suit and teaches him how to use the suit’s powers to break into the building that his holding the Yellowjacket. Basically, it’s a heist film. That’s all there is to it. It is possible that the world may be at risk as it’s revealed that Darren Cross is selling the tech to the terrorist organization, Hydra. But the stakes don’t seem at all that high as compared to Avengers: Age of Ultron. By comparison, Ant-Man’s scenario is small potatoes and rather frivolous when compared to the world destroying affair that was Age of Ultron that came before it. It kind of felt like Ant-Man was the “cooldown” film. It was the film that Marvel decided to schedule after a huge film like an Avengers film to kind of slow things down after all the excitement.
Marvel is doing pretty much the same thing with Ant-Man and The Wasp. It’s actually a whole lot worse now, if you really think about it as it now has to follow after the events that unfolded in Avengers: Infinity War. In order to elaborate on what I mean, I will now be revealing SPOILERS from Avengers: Infinity War. I’m assuming that, since you’re reading something on a geeky site like this, you’ve probably watched Infinity War by now, possibly even twice now. But I still have to warn you about the incoming SPOILERS just in case.
At the end of Avengers: Infinity War, Thanos gets all of the Infinity Stones, snaps his fingers and half of the universe’s population is instantly wiped out of existence. Thanos, having accomplished his life’s goal, retires in solitude and watches the sunrise in a brave, new universe. End credits. It was a shocking ending to most fans as most fans didn’t expect to see the bad guy actually succeed. But he did here and it was amazing! I’m betting a lot of fans left Infinity War left the theater just wondering what’s going to happen now in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Too bad for them! They’ll have to wait a whole year because the next Avengers film, which will definitely answer how Earth’s Mightiest Heroes will bring everybody back, is coming next year. But, in the meantime, they’ll just have to settle for another silly size-changing romp with Ant-Man and The Wasp first.
Marvel has released two trailers for Ant-Man and The Wasp and, while they look like a whole lot of fun, I’m not sure if audiences will be drawn to a film that doesn’t seem to have any impact to the overall story that Avengers: Infinity War told. It just feels incredibly disconnected from the events in the film. That’s probably because this film will be taking place just before Thanos snapped his fingers and changed everything. There are going to be some who will dismiss Ant-Man and The Wasp as “filler” and something that they can skip, which is why not many people went to see the first film then.
Personally, I do like what I’ve seen so far from Ant-Man and The Wasp. After the really heavy Avengers: Infinity War, I’m ready for a lighthearted superhero adventure, which is the vibe I’m getting from the trailers. And the first film was a blast; it doesn’t make it to the upper echelons of my favorite superhero films but it was definitely a whole lot better than most out there. Since it was good, I’m definitely hoping the sequel would be good as well. Also, I’m willing to bet that, while the trailers don’t even hint at it, I’m betting Marvel will slip in a few hints here and there regarding how Ant-Man will get involved with how to reverse the effects of Infinity War. It may be something as simple as an end credits scene or even involving the “quantum realm” (AKA The Microverse in the Marvel comics). Whatever the case, Ant-Man’s latest film will probably give us more clues.
Whatever the case, Ant-Man’s latest film will probably give us more clues. Fans may not see it now but the upcoming Ant-Man and The Wasp will give us a little more perspective with what Marvel has in store for us in the future… or the past since it’s totally possible that it will involve time travel. Hey, this is a comic book movie, after all!
Will you be watching Ant-Man and The Wasp? Let me know in the comments section below!