Why Marvel Should Give The Sentry A Movie

 

The Sentry rips Carnage in half. Interior pane...

Image via Wikipedia

The Sentry has to be one of the most controversial comic book characters of this millennium. It was writer Brian Michael Bendis who brought Robert Reynolds back into the centre of the Marvel Universe by including him in The New Avengers. Since then, fans have ruthlessly criticised the character so often, Marvel had no choice but to respond and they decided to kill the Sentry off in 2010, and the character has not been seen since.

That’s quite a lot of hate. First and foremost, why do people hate the Sentry? Was it because he created continuity problems? Is it his overpowered skills set? Or is it his constant crying and running from battles? More often than not, people seem to dislike the Sentry because he was constantly used as a plot device for high-octane battles, as seen in World War Hulk, New Avengers and Siege. His split personality of Robert Reynolds and the destructive Void persona seemed like an interesting idea. After all, the Sentry is the deconstruction of the Superman archetype. A man with such an extreme set of powers, but burdened by his dark side. If he was handled better, the Sentry could have been Marvel’s answer to Superman and then some. But I guess they figured that’s what Thor is for.

Is Sentry just a Superman rip-off? No, but Marvel have hung the Sentry very close to that label in previous years. His dark side was never truly explored, and more often than not if he wasn’t used as a plot device for action sequences, he would simply run away from a battle in fear. If you need an example, look no further than Secret Invasion. He had potential for some great stories, but he spent too much time lost amongst various Avengers teams.

So what am I doing here wishing for a Sentry movie? We are arguably at an age where Superman is becoming obsolete. People no longer care for immortal characters. When a character is incredibly powerful there’s only so far you can go with them. The Sentry is the ultimate deconstruction of the Superman image. The Sentry is a character so powerful, yet ultimately flawed. If Marvel decided to release a movie on the character surely they would attract a Superman audience, but unlike the DC superhero, the Sentry could offer more providing his flaws were developed on screen. Rob Reynolds would be a more relatable figure than Clark Kent, but would still offer the same amount of thrills.

If X-Men: First Class proved anything last year, it was that you shouldn’t judge a movie before it’s released. Fox’s latest mutant adventure faced worldwide threats of boycott, all because it didn’t stick true enough to the source material. Yet, nearly a year later, and I would say X-Men: First Class was the best comic book movie of 2011 (it’s a pity it didn’t box-office records, but that’s a marketing issue). If a Sentry movie headed into production it would generate quite a media storm. Some people would love the idea of a Sentry movie, and others would ultimately hate it. There’s noting worse than no one caring about the movie (I’m looking at you Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance).

For it to work, I think a Sentry movie would need to exist outside the Marvel cinematic universe, meaning under studio such as Fox or Sony. I feel this would be best, in order for the character’s darker psychological problems to be explored. It’s no secret Marvel Studios aim their movies at a young audience, one I don’t think would appreciate a super powered being ripping his enemies apart.

For all my wishing, I don’t think we’ll ever see a Sentry movie. I think Marvel just lost their way with the character at a crucial time, so I’m not even sure if we’ll see him in the pages of the Marvel universe in the near future. I’ve said time and time again however, there comes a time when Batman and X-Men get boring and it’s time for something new once in a while. Iron Man proved that. If a former b-list hero played by a washed out actor looking for a comeback can hit big, there’s no reason why there couldn’t one day be a Sentry movie.

 

 

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