‘Eternals’: Marvel superheroes now have sex

A kiss between two men, mid-breath sexual encounters, and ten new diverse, multicultural, and inclusive superheroes. The significance of Eternals goes beyond its importance in the Cinematic Universe of Marvel, in which they are the heirs to the continuity of the Avengers: the study confirms its intention to open the doors to new communities and races.

A few months ago, the premiere of Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings welcomed the first Asian superhero in the history of the comic book house. Now with Eternals a bunch of characters from different backgrounds and cultures come together to save the world, as well as featuring the first gay couple in a Marvel movie.

Ajak (Salma Hayek), Sersi (Gemma Chan), Ikaris (Richard Madden), Thena (Angelina Jolie), Gilgamesh (Don Lee), Sprite (Lia McHugh), Phastos (Brian Tyree Henry), Makkari (Lauren Ridloff), Kingo (Kumail Nanjiani) and Druig (Barry Keoghan) are a race of immortals with powers who have lived for thousands of years in secret on Earth, camouflaged among humans. After the fatal deeds of Avengers: Endgame, which eradicated half of humanity, a new threat – with a new apocalypse in between – forces them to appear before humans.

(What’s more: This is the luxury cast of ‘Eternals’, the new Marvel movie).

It seems that the breadth of Marvel is even behind the scenes: Chinese-American Chloé Zhao, the second woman and the first Asian to win an Oscar thanks to Nomadland, is the director and co-writer of Eternals..

“Chloé gives her a special signature, a style and a particular sensibility, so it was fantastic to be able to share with her, see what she could do and see her hand in the story and in her characters, I think the way she is brilliant is brilliant. she is willing to give this story an epic touch: spectacular landscapes and incredible battles, everything you expect from a film like this. It’s also beautiful how he made the connections between the characters. They are very intimate ”, British actress Gemma Chan, who plays Sersi, comments in a talk with EL TIEMPO.

‘Eternals’, the new Marvel movie

(You can also read: Anya Taylor-Joy is the enigma queen in ‘The Soho Mystery’).

A controversial kiss

Critics, meanwhile, have been decaffeinated with their comments on Eternals, while the public is divided: there are many disqualifying comments for the plot and the effects – a section that should be obvious for a Marvel film.

“Regardless of Zhao’s (and Marvel’s) intentions, Eternals is a parade of inexperienced faces, a film that goes through history and returns empty-handed,” exposes The New Yorker.

In Colombia, the film accumulated 398,400 viewers during its opening weekend, a figure that makes it the box office of Marvel in this 2021 in the country and in the second best launch since the reopening of cinemas after the pandemic.

Marvel's Eternals Movie

Phastos (Brian Tyree Henry) has a husband and is the first homosexual couple in a Marvel film.

However, the good performances at the box office and the rather loose plot – with the odd surprising twist – have taken a back seat. The controversy has been centered on an affectionate kiss and a sex scene with no nudity in sight.

Phastos (Brian Tyree Henry) and her husband – the first homosexual couple in a Marvel film – star in one of the most tender kisses in the film: the one he gives his partner after seeing each other after a long day at work, and the sexual scene between Ikaris and Sersi on a beach in ancient Mesopotamia. They are just a couple of minutes without a greater load of pure eroticism, but enough to disrupt the world of superheroes. Sex has been a taboo in these types of films, and their characters generally appear to have the sex of Barbies. In Eternals, for a moment, no.

The film, which begins Phase 4 of the Cinematographic Universe of Marvel (MCU for its acronym in English), was even censored in some countries for these scenes. Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain, Oman and Kuwait refused to show the film if the sexual content was not edited, while in Russia it received 18 years of censorship (in Colombia the classification is 12 years) for the same reason.

“I’m sad, but proud that Marvel refused to remove those scenes,” commented the actress. Angelina Jolie during a meeting with Australian media. I do not understand how we live in a world in which there are still people who do not see the family that Phastos has and the beauty of that relationship and that love ”.

(Can read: Fernando Trueba is the figure of the Huelva Film Festival).

Marvel's Eternals Movie

Pakistani actor Kumail Nanjiani: from ‘nerd’ to toned superhero. A change in stereotypes.

Fighting stereotypes

Pakistani actor Kumail Nanjiani is a clear example of how Eternals tries to change the projection of performers from specific cultures and countries. Hollywood has proven that it has the perfect box for Latinos, Asians or Arabs.
Nanjiani, Kingo in the movie, is not a scared and skinny Indian. He killed himself for months in the gym (motivated by the muscles of Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger, the ideals of masculinity that haunted his head as a child) and radically changed his look. Not because he wanted to have scary pecs, but because he wanted to fit in differently as an actor.

“I wanted to get other kinds of opportunities. I wanted the industry to see me differently. People of color can only access very specific roles ”, he assures. “Feeling fear or causing fear. Fixing your computer or planning something strange with the actions of the stock market, “he said in an interview with GQ magazine.

Famous for his character as a skilled nerd on the HBO series Silicon Valley, he claims that Chloé Zhao and producer Nate Moore “played it by signing me as Kingo at the end of 2018. They believed in me with a faith that the rest of the world. industry did not have ”.

Marvel's Eternals Movie

Mexican actress Salma Hayek as Ajak.

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The Mexican Salma Hayek It also adds to that exciting adventure to start changing the rules of the game. For her, donning the superhero costume was her childhood dream come true. In an interview that seemed like yet another of the Eternals promotion, the interpreter, who aspired to an Oscar for her role as Frida, burst into tears when she recognized the emotion that became Ajak, a super powerful woman.

“I saw my brown face in the superhero costume, and when I saw my face I saw your face, I saw my face as a girl, who had to have so much courage to dream big. I saw the faces of all the girls. I realized that a door had been opened where I was not alone, but in that suit all the Latinos went together that we have waited so long for this moment, ”Hayek said in an interview with the Univision network’s Despierta América program.

In the end, Eternals synthesizes a message of empathy and visibility for the audiences that is summarized in ‘the difference is valuable and important’; They even allow themselves to say that the arrival of the Spanish in America was a genocide. There are Latinos, gays, women who take leadership in the middle of a group of males, overweight people, Asians, but the most powerful, at least in brute force, are Angelina Jolie (Thena) and Richard Madden (Ikaris); However, in this new universe of diversity, the turn in the personality and in the head of its characters is not the typical one of the white hero and savior.

For Kit Harington, the unforgettable Jon Snow from Game of Thrones, who in this movie does not have any kind of power, not even an unhappy sword, the most powerful message of the film for audiences is, above all, “the sense of family, when they finish Introducing ourselves to all the members, we realize that they are very dissimilar, but that they are there to support each other in the midst of difficulties. At the end of the day, Eternals is a tale of humanity and its connections. “

And it’s a good start for other types of heroes – sooner or later a Colombian has to sneak into these types of universes – and for a new post-Avengers saga. There is no doubt that there will be a second part. The post-credits scene, as always, leaves a new loose thread.

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SOFÍA GÓMEZ G.
CULTURE
In Twitter: @ s0f1c1ta

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‘Eternals’: Marvel superheroes now have sex