I don’t think the MCU gets nearly enough cre…

I don’t think the MCU gets nearly enough credit for centering almost all of its stories around male characters who’s values or actions deviate from what other action films would consider “masculine”.

Tony Stark and Frank Castle both suffer almost debilitating PTSD and are defined in large part by fear (hell, who ever would’ve thought the last words spoken by THE PUNISHER in his own show would be “I’m Scared”?).

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 ends with an extreme close up of a violent, angry, gun toting male character crying because he’s realized that can be loved.

Say what you will about Stucky shippers, but the Captain America franchise has unironically centered itself around the muscle-bound symbol of the most machismo-valuing country in existence and how emotionally vulnerable he’s made by his earnest, undying sense of love and friendship for another man.

Doctor Strange and Thor Ragnarok involve characters constantly on the back end, constantly losing, having their sense of power and authority questioned, and their inner conflict is only resolved when they relinquish that sense of entitlement and self-importance.

Compare this to a lot of other action blockbusters or comedies, where emotional weakness or genuine emotion of any kind that deviates from the masculine ideal is frowned upon, played ironically or otherwise framed as a negative. Where a character having their ego validated rather than adjusted is usually portrayed as the ultimate win, and where fear is something to be conquered or ignored, not lived with.

Granted I don’t think Hollywood has this problem nearly as much as it once did, but it kinda amazes me how you barely hear anyone calling any of these characters “pansies” or not manly enough, in spite of nearly a decade of movies all about men failing (or outright not even trying) to live up to a typical Hollywood sense of “manliness”.