This shouldn't be a surprise to anyone: Critics and audiences are not a fan of Marvel's Inhumans. After poor reception with trailers and criticisms about the show's cheap production value and special effects, people aren't exactly loving the newest addition to the MCU, with the show's Rotten Tomatoes score at a staggering 0 percent. However, Jeph Loeb, the head of Marvel television, is sticking to his guns and defending his vision for the show.
The original idea for Inhumans was to give them their own feature film within the #MCU on the same level as Iron Man, Captain America and Thor. However, since #Marvel dropped the Inhumans bomb on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Loeb told CBR that he felt that the characters could be fleshed out better during a 12-hour season than a two-hour film.
"We never really approached it as something that was going to be spectacle first and family second, and so I think one of the things that we do well is to ground our characters, to be able to take the time in order to get to know our villains... This was an opportunity for us to be able to tell a story about people."
Whether you want to agree with him or not, Loeb does make a good point that has worked for the Netflix Marvel shows. Most fans would agree that both Kilgrave and Wilson Fisk have been two of the greatest MCU villains since Loki. This is because a TV show can spend time dedicating development to everyone on the character list, including the hero, side-characters and villains.
The Inhumans have a long list of characters that need development and that a film would not be able to flesh out as well. The X-Men franchise is a good example of this, as everyone can agree that while most of the X-Men films are good (not amazing or terrible), they did leave out a lot of mutants and plot points from the story, including Gambit, Jubilee, most of Rogue's powers, as well as Wolverine and Sabretooth's rivalry.
Most of the X-Men films focused on the character of Wolverine because the studios felt that these movies needed one central character to root for, and he was the character audiences kept coming back for. If Inhumans were to be adapted into a film, they would have to focus on one character or a special few. This has worked in the past with Guardians of the Galaxy, but the Inhumans have a whole society that needs focus, rather than the Guardians who only need to focus on a handful.
Also, while other Marvel television properties usually take place in New York City, Inhumans takes place on the moon, which requires more of a budget than most television shows. Loeb explained that the addition of Ghost Rider in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. served as a benchmark as they went into development of Inhumans.
"In the first two hours alone there are 600 visual shots... and that is not something that we had ever done or ever taken on. Each of those experiences pose different challenges while you're trying to make a regular television show. A lot of people came to us at the beginning of [Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.] last season and said to us, 'How are you going to do Ghost Rider? That was a feature property. How are you ever going to compare with a feature property?' I think we held up pretty well, not just for television."
Surprisingly, in spite of the belief that it couldn't work, Ghost Rider turned out rather well on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., despite fans still wanting a Netflix show based on the character. Inhumans could still preform well with audiences when the show premiers on Sept. 29 on ABC. Most audiences usually give new TV shows four episodes to a full season before harshly judging it and dumping it from their watchlist.
Star Trek: The Next Generation lasted a good seven seasons and if often considered better than the original, but the first season of the show is lackluster compared to the rest of the seasons; same thing with North America's version of The Office. Season 1 of The Office really under-performed with their ratings, but the studios took a gamble and renewed the show for another season.
Even Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. had a poor reception with its first season and they were able to improve themselves in the following season with better writing and casting. So, it's fully possible that #Inhumans could have a rough first season and can improve on its mistakes for the future. While the trailers and other marketing did not impress us, the show's writing and performances can still surprise us and it would be unfair to judge a show based on two measly episodes.
Marvel's Inhumans premiers on small screens on Septempter 29. See for yourselves if you like it or not and give it a shot. You never know, you might be pleasantly surprised.
Will you be watching Marvel's Inhumans?