There was something particularly striking about watching Captain Marvel, something inspiring, something powerful. In lieu of a review, we thought we’d allow our writers to give their opinion on this film, what it feels like to see someone like Carol Danvers on the big screen, and we’re hoping for the future of the MCU.
Joining me in this roundtable are Lyra, Gillian and McKenzie. So let us talk Captain Marvel!
First things first, did you like the movie? If you had to give it a rating, what would you give her, with one being the lowest, and five the highest.
Lizzie: I really and truly loved the movie, the first time I watched it with this sort of wonder of wow, powerful woman, and the second time with a more nuanced feeling that this story was, at last, for me. I’ll give it a 5.
Lyra: I LOVED CAPTAIN MARVEL TO THE MOON AND BACK! And if I were to give her a rating it would be a solid 10. Yes, it’s considered cheating but she was so amazing and brilliant that she breaks past any limitations ANYONE tries to put on her! Lol.
Gillian: I really did like the movie. It’s not perfect but it was exactly what I wanted and needed. I’m giving it a 4.5 out of 5.
McKenzie: 5. All the fives. It was so good and exactly what I have been needing. Plus, there was no romantic angle for a female lead for once. It was refreshing.
As a woman, watching Captain Marvel has an added layer of importance. Did you feel empowered by the movie? Do you think it’s important for little girls and little boys to grow up in a world where female superheroes are commonplace?
Lizzie: I feel like I could fight armies right now. And more importantly, I feel like I don’t have to be anything other than what I am, because what I am can be a superhero. The whole goal of superheroes is, of course, to inspire people – but male superheroes, as inspiring as they have been in the past, are, of course, not tailored to reflect the uniqueness of being a woman, and to that extent, only inspire us in a broad sense. Captain Marvel, like Wonder Woman before her, inspires us, I think, NOT because of their power, but because they are proof of something we already need, but is always good to have reinforced: women can do anything.
Lyra: As a woman, Captain Marvel felt like coming home. Here we had this woman, this hero, that was a badass, intelligent, funny, and kind! She was a wide range of things that I don’t think I’ve seen a female superhero do on screen yet. And this isn’t me trying to say that this female superhero is better. I’m saying that the writing is getting better and female characters are being given an opportunity to be more than the love interest, kick ass fighter, or damsel in distress. Progress means we get better and more well written heroes. It also means that little girls and little boys are growing up in a world where they can look up to women because it’ll be the norm for them. And I don’t know about you, but that makes me teary eyed AF. Someone like me, could be someone people look up to. That’s brilliant.
Gillian: I definitely felt empowered by the movie. Her strength was not only physical. It was in her whole personality, her heart, her friendships. I loved her sarcasm and how she wore her emotions on her sleeve. I always think more female representation is necessary. It warms my heart that little girls can see themselves on screen and for little boys to respect that.
McKenzie: I felt empowered and it represents women really well. We have a female Air Force pilot and badass superhero that is also a strong woman. Brie Larsen was phenomenal and all her pictures with young boys and girls give me so many feels and so much hope.
One of the biggest messages of the movie was that you can fail time and time again, the important part is that you get back up. Does this message strike a chord with you?
Lizzie: So much. I think we all need a reminder of this, but particularly now, as I’ve had some personal issues, it’s good to have someone other than myself be there with this message. Sometimes there’s this attempt to minimize the power of representation and the power of positive messages, and I think the only ones who do that are the people who’ve had these messages directed at them for their entire lives. For the rest of us, this is brand new and hella inspiring.
Lyra: This message hit me so hard that I’m going to tell you a little secret. I took that message, that spirit of getting back up after you fall, and I transformed into something I could carry around with me just in case I lost my way. I created a little card, one side with Captain Marvel’s logo and the other with this message to stand up written across it. I cut the two sides out, glued it together, and even went as far as laminating it because it’s go big or go home with me. Now I have it, on me, wherever I go as a guiding reminder that when I fall, I can rise again.
Gillian: I have been going through a rough time personally and professionally. The past two years have not been kind to me so that message really hit home. It’s been hard getting up every day only to be thrown back down but even before this movie, I was going through the motions of picking myself up. It was nice to see on screen especially because it wasn’t only part of her past. It was also something she struggled with while having extraordinary powers! Moving forward, going to power pose every time I get up from a setback.
McKenzie: it’s hard not to imagine this striking a chord with me. I’m a woman so that is always an obstacle by itself. We aren’t valued the way we should be and are looked down upon by weak men. Every time during the movie someone called her weak or emotional I felt it in my soul.
The other big message of the movie was that emotions aren’t a weakness, they’re a strength. This is a particularly important message for women, who are constantly being told they’re too “emotional” to do their jobs. How did this message make you feel?
Lizzie: I have never felt like the way I was, or the way I conducted business, or the way I liked things was acceptable, or maybe I just didn’t feel like it was the right way. I’ve worked in a male predominant field for all my life, and I have struggled to control my emotions, to seem as emotionless as them, because that’s what they expected of me – that’s what everyone expected of me. And I really didn’t think I’d go into Captain Marvel and come out feeling like my emotions are not just okay, they’re a strength. I didn’t think I would feel so understood, and so supported. I didn’t think I’d tear up as Carol said “I have nothing to prove to you.” But I did. Because I realized it applied to me too.
Lyra: Let me tell you, I needed this message in my life, every woman does. From a young age we are taught to stay in your lane when it comes to EVERYTHING in our lives that might steer even a little bit away from what a prim and proper young lady should be. At least, that’s what life was like for me in a Latinx home. Captain Marvel took that message, that “stay in your lane” attitude, AND THREW IT RIGHT THE FUCK OUT THE WINDOW! Making us feel shame for our emotions, be it by a man or a woman, is the world’s way of discrediting us and acting like we are out of control, not worth the effort, or even smart enough to be considered. We aren’t out of control. We are worth the effort. And we are smart enough to be considered for EVERYTHING, TO THE MOON AND BACK! No one can tell us, tell me, tell you, how we are to feel or what emotions we should repress. We are vibrant, brilliant, badass women. Let’s get to work and embrace all the ups, downs, and turns of our lives! We deserve it!
Gillian: My whole life, even before I entered the workforce, I was told I was too loud, too sensitive, too emotional, too much. It was always upsetting because I constantly felt like no one wanted me to be who I was. Watching Carol take her power back BY accessing her emotions was a revelation to me. It was exactly what I needed to see at this point in my life. My emotions give me strength and I will no longer feel bad for making someone uncomfortable when I am expressing them.
McKenzie: I’ve been told by men that I’m to emotional, sarcastic, weak and so many other things. This message was a huge point for me and helped me connect to Carol on a deeper level. We shouldn’t need to change who we are for small minded men. We are perfect the way we are. If they have a problem with it then we fight back.
What was your favorite thing about the movie?
Lizzie: I loved Carol’s relationship with Maria, and her relationship with Fury as well. I even loved the time she had with Monica, and Talos, and Goose. I love that the movie didn’t feel like it was trying too hard to say hey, sometimes women’s lives aren’t about romance, but it still sent that message.
Lyra: My favorite thing about the movie was how funny, silly, and honest Captain Marvel was allowed to be. The writing transformed her into AN ACTUAL PERSON who found joy in the life she was living, even amongst the crap that life throws our ways sometimes. That’s reality and that’s how life really is. Allowing and encouraging that in Captain Marvel made me connect with her character in the same way I do with Tony Stark or Peter Parker. I especially liked when she had her hands locked up by the Skrull and roared into a bad guys face just like he did to her. It was surprising and so damn funny. I couldn’t look away!
Gillian: The thing I liked best was that it wasn’t what you expected. The villains, the story about how she got her powers, Goose, everything was kind of turned upside down and it was awesome. I love being surprised by superhero movies! If we’re going by specific scenes, the “I have nothing to prove to you” will stick with me forever and I also adored every single 90s reference and song.
McKenzie: The relationship between her and Fury. I love Carols sense of humor and the camaraderie they share. Goose is also precious as well. I have a cat that looks exactly like him so I might be a bit biased. I loved how Carol stands up for what she believes in. Even if she has to deny orders because it’s the right thing to do. That is the type of person I look up to.
What do you anticipate for Captain Marvel going forward? Which Avenger are you most excited to see her interact with?
Lizzie: CAROL AND THOR. THE TWO STRONGEST AVENGERS FIGHTING SIDE BY SIDE. CAROL AND SCARLET WITCH AND OKOYE AND BLACK WIDOW AND NEBULA, BECAUSE I DESERVE A SHOT OF ALL THE WOMAN TOGETHER. CAROL AND TONY SASSING EACH OTHER. CAROL AND CAP, AND THE PASSING OF THE MANTLE.
Just ..every second of Carol.
Lyra: I expect Captain Marvel to be a BAMF that will make even Thanos shake in his boots at his summer home. This woman’s got the power to take on anything that comes her way and I’m so excited to see how she has grown since the moment she left with the Skrull to find them a new home. As for which Avengers I’m most looking forward to her hanging out with…hmmmm. Tony is definitely on this list. They’re both sarcastic, funny, and wildly intelligent. Oh and Thor. This Asgardian is a fangirl and he will be in awe and want Captain Marvel’s autograph ASAP. Remember how he reacted when he encountered a Valkyrie. Same thing is going to happen here.
Gillian: I know Endgame is soon but I was actually more excited to see what they do with a sequel. Will it go back to the past and feature Ronan? Will it be post-Endgame and feature more Monica? But of course, we have Endgame and I am ready for her to go toe-to-toe with Thanos. It is going to be quite the epic battle. I really want her and Steve to get along. I feel like they were written very similarly in the MCU and I think they’ll be really great teammates because Steve respects women.
McKenzie: I’m excited to see how everyone else reacts to her especially Cap. I will forever ship Steve and Peggy but I could see something between him and Carol as well. I’m most excited to see Carol kick some ass. I have a need to avenge some deaths. Goodbye Thanos. I hope you have a miserable, slow, painful, death.
Captain Marvel is in theaters right now.