The future of the Inhumans is a question that has been lingering over the Marvel Cinematic Universe ever since their movie was quietly removed from Marvel’s Phase Three slate earlier this year. Well, tonight we have an answer, and it seems as though the project has moved from the cinemas to TV.
But this is no ordinary series. Prompted by the blockbuster success of the series Marvel has developed alongside Netflix (and perhaps also by the often lukewarm response to ‘Agents of SHIELD’ and the cancellation of the acclaimed but low-rated ‘Agent Carter’), ABC is looking to turn ‘The Inhumans’ into an event. How? Well, you need look no farther than the recent release of ‘Doctor Strange’, which has been promoted with an emphasis on experiencing the film’s eye-popping visuals in IMAX 3D. Marvel and ABC plan to mirror that by partnering with IMAX for a cross-platform launch. How is that going to work, exactly? From the press release:
Marvel Television, a unit of Marvel Entertainment, and Disney/ABC Television Group today announced an innovative agreement to exclusively premiere the new ABC series ‘Marvel’s The Inhumans’ in IMAX commercial theaters, marking the first time a live-action television series has debuted in this manner.
Under the agreement, a version of the first two episodes of Marvel Television’s new series ‘Marvel’s The Inhumans’ — produced in conjunction with ABC Studios and filmed entirely with IMAX digital cameras — will run worldwide exclusively in IMAX for two weeks at the beginning of September 2017. ABC plans to then premiere the weekly series in fall, with additional exclusive content that can only be seen on the network.
In a way, a television series is perhaps a more appropriate direction in which to take the Inhumans, given that they have so far chiefly featured on ‘Agents of SHIELD’ and gone virtually unacknowledged in the films. Originally introduced in the comics during Stan Lee and Jack Kirby’s legendary ‘Fantastic Four’ run, and incorporated into the Marvel Cinematic Universe throughout the second season of ‘Agents of SHIELD’, the Inhumans are an evolutionary offshoot of humanity given superpowers as a result of ancient genetic experimentation by the alien Kree. In the MCU thus far, the Inhumans have largely played a role similar to that of the X-Men in the comics, that of an often feared and persecuted superpowered minority. But in the absence of familiar characters like Chrystal or Medusa, who or what would an Inhumans series focus on? For that, we go back to the press release, for what is perhaps the most exciting part of this announcement:
The Inhumans, a race of superhumans with diverse and singularly unique powers, were first introduced in Marvel Comics by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby in 1965. Since that time, they have grown in prominence and become some of the most popular and iconic characters in the Marvel Universe. ‘Marvel’s The Inhumans’ will explore the never-before-told epic adventure of Black Bolt and the royal family.
Not only will it be exciting for fans to see the Inhuman Royal Family finally join the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but the fact the series will be centered on them also helps to defuse the common criticism that the MCU has largely used the Inhumans as “substitute X-Men”. Not only that, but it also helps to make clear exactly what sort of spectacle the series will be brining to IMAX theaters next fall.
Be sure to check in with ScienceFiction.com for more on information on ‘The Inhumans’, including casting and specific premiere dates, as it becomes available!