Take the 2-minute tour ×
Science Fiction & Fantasy Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for science fiction and fantasy enthusiasts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I realize that this isn't going to provide a straight 'yes/no' answer, but I believe it could yield a correct answer nontheless, if appropriate detail is provided...

How much of the already released Marvel Cinematic Universe films contains narrative events that are faithful to previously published canon material?

Are there any films that maintain relative fidelity to a specific narrative arc, or are they all considered original storylines?

This is obviously ruling out the 'loose' details of the character emergence/origin story, more specific plot points and narrative..

share|improve this question
I gave you a + 1 for a good question and topic (IMHO), and my answer below does include one origin story, but I do so because it illustrates not only the source material but also how some things are considerably re-interpreted. –  FoxMan2099 Jan 20 at 4:22
add comment

migrated from movies.stackexchange.com Jan 20 at 1:52

This question came from our site for movie and tv enthusiasts.

2 Answers

The answer is that it is ROOTED IN AND LOOSELY BASED on Marvel cannon. Here are some examples:

---In Iron Man, for instance, Tony's injury to his heart and capture are rooted in and loosely based upon his origin story going back to Tales of Suspence #39 (1963). In the comics, however, there is an anti-communist theme and those who capture him are Asian, whereas in the movie there is more of an anti-terrorist theme and those who capture Tony look more like radical Islamic extremists (that's not a characterization of all or the majority of Islam, btw). So you see the point, the origin is rooted in the comics, but heavily adapted (perhaps even re-interpreted).

---Iron Man 2 draws heavily from the self-destructive impulses in Tony as elaborated in the critically-acclaimed comics arc, Demon in a Bottle. See HERE for details.

---In Thor: The Dark World, the basic story of Malekith is adapted from Walter Simonson's run on Thor in the 1980s, which is when he created and introduced Malekith. However, Malekith is much more complex in the comics, a deceiver and schemer on par with Loki, and not the nihilist of the movie trying to destroy everything (I know that's an oversimplification, but the point is in the contrast). See here for a little info, not much but enough to see the differences: LINK.

Conclusion: I think these sufficiently demonstrate how some basic plot points are rooted in and loosely based upon comics canon. To be clear, though, they also demonstrate how the movies adapt, diverge, and even re-interpret the canonical material.

share|improve this answer
add comment

I do know that Iron Man 3 was loosely based on the "Extremis" arc (6 issues published between 2005 and 2006). Also, it seems that the the general trajectory of the MCU will eventually include both Thanos and his quest for the Infinity Gauntlet, a staple of many Marvel story lines staring both the Avengers and the Guardians.

Sadly, my knowledge of Marvel comic cannon is way too limited, but is seems that the MCU is much like the Nolan Batman franchise in that the movies blend various "cannon" story arcs together into a single film, while also introducing original elements.

share|improve this answer
good use of the Nolanverse to demonstrate the point, I have a graphic novel called Batman: The Long Halloween, and it has an introduction by Nolan talking about his love for the story and his drawing upon its material in his films. –  FoxMan2099 Jan 20 at 4:21
add comment

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.