5 AUG 2022

Are consumers starting to get tired of superhero movies?

New data from Morning Consult shows that enjoyment of the seemingly never-ending stream of superhero content continues to drop among adults in the United States - and even among self-identified Marvel fans.

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“Thor: Love and Thunder”

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Last month, Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige unveiled extensive plans for phases 5 and 6 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe at San Diego Comic-Con. Among a slew of reveals that included films and TV series featuring both familiar characters and ones new to most fans, perhaps the biggest announcement was the two new Avengers films set for 2025.

The news came amid a rare slump for the Disney-owned property: many of Marvel Studios’ latest films, including “Thor: Love and Thunder,” have underwhelmed at the box office. While the coronavirus pandemic and rise of streaming options have certainly been factors, the slump may stem in part from a tangible increase in superhero fatigue among moviegoers. New data from Morning Consult shows that enjoyment of the seemingly never-ending stream of superhero content continues to drop among adults in the United States - and even among self-identified Marvel fans.

The share of adults who said they enjoy superhero movies dropped 5 percentage points from 64% in November to 59% in a late July survey conducted following the Comic-Con announcements. Meanwhile, the share of adults who do not enjoy superhero movies jumped 5 points in that time, from 36% to 41%. That share has increased 9 points since a 2018 survey.

While 82% of Marvel fans still enjoy superhero movies, per the July survey, nearly one-third (31%) said they are “getting a little tired of so many of them,” a 2-point uptick from last year. The 82% who enjoy them is down from 87% in November. The share of Marvel fans who do not enjoy superhero movies increased 5 points in that time, from 13% to 18%.

According to Morning Consult, if there is a silver lining for Marvel, DC Comics and the rest of the superhero industry, it is that the share of Gen Z adults who said they enjoy watching superhero movies and will continue to watch them in theaters increased from 47% in November to 53% in July. The generation was also the likeliest to say they plan on watching Marvel’s new releases in theaters. Meanwhile, the shares of millennials, baby boomers and Gen Xers who said they enjoy watching superhero movies and will continue to watch them in theaters each dropped compared to last year.

Surveys were conducted on November 19-21, 2021, and July 30-31, 2022, among representative samples of roughly 2.200 adults in the United States, with an unweighted margin of error of +/-2 percentage points.

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