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Veteran Marvel fans are already nostalgic for… 2016?

Fans debate whether the good ol' days are gone.

A promotional image shows Iron Man, Black Widow and others facing off against Captain America and his faction
Image via Marvel Studios

Part of being an entertainment company like Marvel is you have to keep producing new content and also continuously move forward so things don’t get stagnant. This means that things are going to keep changing – there have to be new properties and new stories to keep things fresh.

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However, some fans are already nostalgic for days gone by, namely the period from 2016 to 2018, according to a fun Marvel thread over on the subreddit r/marvelstudios. User Ska-pilgrim123456 posited the following: “I really miss the 2016 through 2018 times of the MCU.”

“Nothing wrong with phase four (I personally like it) but I just miss the times of being a fan around those years. Getting movies left and right boom Civil War, boom Doctor Strange, Homecoming, Infinity War, Endgame you know. (I mean connected wise). I can’t describe it but everything just felt… perfect.

Also I’m just gonna say this and I truly don’t mean to offend you phase four fans at all but you guys are weird as hell sometimes. I’m sorry I just had to get it off my chest please don’t hate me.”

Nothing gets fellow Marvel fans riled up like calling them “weird,” and “please don’t hate me” definitely doesn’t help. Despite this, user bigc_94 had a measured response.

“Idk I think you might be looking at that release schedule with rose colored glasses. Its pretty similar to the current phase release schedule. Also, Civil War released May 6th then Dr. Strange November 4th, that’s a nearly 7 month gap not quite the left and right “boom” you described lol.”

They went on to say that movies now are actually getting released more rapidly, with a three month gap between Black Widow and Shang-Chi, and another three months for Eternals.

User Saul-Funyun commiserated but also said to trust what Marvel has in store for the future.

“I getcha. It was a fun time, we kept pushing the boundaries of how big the world could get, and it ended in such a satisfying way. Plus, time felt different when you could actually go out and do stuff. That said, I love the weirdness they’re doing with the sandbox. You can’t replicate what happened. You can only look for what’s next.”

User BrightSunsGuy also shared that sentiment. “You have to give the new stuff a chance! The new Phase, after all, needs to have a beginning before it can have a crazy good ending.

“I think what we have to remember is that this is only Phase 4, the first phase in a whole new saga. Phase 3 was amazing because it was the crescendo, climax, and conclusion of a decade’s worth of movies. It will always be special. I am optimistic that what they are laying the groundwork for right now in Phase 4 will pay off massively in Phase 6, or whenever the Multiverse Saga inevitably concludes.”

User Flame_On_And_On subtly dragged OP’s understanding of storytelling in a completely expected and nerd-like way.

“Kind of like how people say ‘Empire Strikes Back was always the best Star Wars film’ when what they seem to mean is ‘I always like act two of a three act story.’”

The truth is that Phase Four is just getting started, and there’s no way to know how it’s going to end up. Sure, from right now it looks to be less exciting than previous ones but that doesn’t mean it will be. Marvel has seemingly endless amounts of money and some of the most creative people in the world in its employ.

Only time will tell how it all shakes out. Check out the whole thread over on Reddit.