Marvel’s Woes Continue, Huge Budget Blown on Disappointing New Project

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Samuel L Jackson as Nick Fury in 'Secret Invasion'

Credit: Marvel Studios

Marvel’s latest project to hit Disney+ hasn’t exactly set the world alight – but the studio has invested a lot into its new series, Secret Invasion.

Since Disney+ launched in 2019, Marvel has launched several new MCU series on the streaming platform. Despite starting off strong with the universally-acclaimed WandaVision, its successive series have varied massively in terms of quality and success.

Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury in 'Secret Invasion'
Credit: Marvel

Related: ‘Secret Invasion’ Will Reveal the “Truth” of Nick Fury

Its latest series to hit the platform is Secret Invasion. Focusing on MCU mainstay Nick Fury (Samuel L Jackson), it sees the “most paranoid man on earth” team up with the Skrull Talos (Ben Mendelsohn) as they unravel a conspiracy by the latter’s shapeshifting alien kind to conquer Earth. It also stars Emilia Clarke as Giah (recast from her youthful Captain Marvel (2019) appearance) and Olivia Colman as Sonya Falsworth.

While the show’s marketing campaign has been nothing short of incredible, the show itself has been met with a resounding “meh.” As of its third episode, it sits at 61% on Rotten Tomatoes, with reviews generally complaining that despite the spy narrative having “potential,” the show feels “overripe with exposition,” “the tone is too dour,” and that it “fails in its aspirations to be Marvel for adults, mostly because it’s difficult to figure out what’s going on in any given scene.”

Emilia Clarke's G'iah talking to Ben Mendelsohn's Talos
Credit: Marvel

Audiences haven’t taken to the series quite as well as its predecessors, either. Secret Invasion has pulled in Marvel’s second-lowest viewership on Disney+ so far. The series debuted to 994,000 US households, which is only fractionally higher than the worst debut so farMs. Marvel, which premiered to 775,000.

What makes this debut even more disappointing is that Marvel invested a lot into this series. And we mean a lot. According to a report by Forbes, its budget reached an incredible $211.6 million.

Emilia Clarke in Secret Invasion
Credit: Marvel Studios

Related: ‘Secret Invasion’ Could Set up the Future of the MCU

Secret Invasion was always going to be a gamble for Marvel. With way less action – and way, way fewer superheroes – than your usual Marvel project, it was inevitable that some fans would tune out. However, considering the contrast between the budget and the viewers, it seems like more fans have switched off than Marvel anticipated. Considering that the studio hasn’t exactly been on top form lately – the less we say about Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania (2023), the better – it’s just another blow to the once undefeatable studio.

Have you been watching Secret Invasion? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!

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