When it was first announced that the Marvel’s previously announced Inhumans movie had been scrapped and turned into a television series instead, many wondered if the small screen format could ever do justice to the Inhuman Royal Family, a beloved group of superheroes in the Marvel comic books. After all, Black Bolt, the Midnight King, his Queen Medusa, his brother Maximus The Mad and all the other members of his inner circle are larger-than-life characters deserving of grandiose storytelling. Their cherished city of Attilan is both ancient and futuristic, and the Inhumans’ struggles, goals and powers are appropriately epic. To bring them to life would always be a challenge, and Marvel saw it fit to try something completely different for this series: to limit the number of episodes to only eight, to film the two-part pilot with IMAX cameras and to release the 80-minute long result in IMAX theaters.
It was an unprecedented move, a bold approach that augmented expectations, which were already high to begin with. Surely, such an ambitious project would yield jaw-dropping results — an experience worthy of a movie itself. However, the marketing campaign started things off on the wrong foot, with audiences complaining about poor production value, and it only grew worse from there. It’s been a tumultuous ramp-up, but now Marvel’s Inhumans is here. You might have heard mentions that the final product looks cheap or that it feels rushed. However, the Marvel brand carries with it a healthy amount of faith, one that has more than merited the benefit of the doubt. While it’s always nice to hear what critics have to say, the only way to truly know is to see it for yourself.
But considering that Inhumans will hit our regular television screens in the fall on ABC, you might find yourself wondering if it is actually worth paying an IMAX entry ticket to see two episodes of a show that you will ultimately be able to watch for free in little less than a month — episodes that, on top of all that, are confirmed to feature extra scenes for their television broadcast.
This is a valid concern to have, especially when taking into account the high price tag that comes with an IMAX showing. But the truth of the matter is, there’s nothing quite like experiencing a movie in the theater, and Inhumans is no different. Sure, the final product definitely feels more like a television show than an actual film, but that isn’t necessarily a fault. There’s a different structure to storytelling when it comes to television, and it will of course deviate from the usual cinematic viewing. Could the series have used more budget to make things even more spectacular and cosmic? Absolutely. But that doesn’t make any of what you will see in the theater bad by default. It might be a mistake going into the series expecting something like Game of Thrones — this isn’t HBO, it’s still an ABC series, albeit one well worth your time. When going into a showing with a pre-conceived notion that something will be bad, it’s easy to look only at the bad. But there is also a lot of good to witness here.
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