Just as going for a walk in the woods on a beautiful day will inevitably lead you to pick up some burrs on your pants, so too will perusing something fun on the internet ineluctably point you to comments from the most repellant segment of the population. Call it the Yiannopoulos Effect: No matter how simple the appeal of something, there’s an idiot out there willfully misinterpreting it in hopes of riling their fellow simpletons.
Look no further than the reviews page for Captain Marvel on Rotten Tomatoes for today’s example of insensate behavior. The upcoming Marvel movie starring Brie Larson has yet to come out, but a barrage of brief, pointed negative reviews on the site are trying to create the false impression of a tide of dislike for the film. “brie larson has already said this isnt for me.i’ll spend my money elsewhere,” states a clearly thoughtful person named “Kevin,” to cite one example. “I somehow feel that Skull are not the enemy, but that I am, since Brie Larsen has been careful to state she doesn’t want the Press Tour to include types like me,” goes another assessment. “Terrible movie hate it already!!!!!!” says yet another person who has, again, not seen the movie.
The impetus behind these reviews is as predictable as it is wearyingly misguided: Larson had the temerity to point out that a lot of the press she was dealing with for Disney was overwhelmingly white and male, and she took steps to try and get more diversity in the film journalists with whom she was meeting. Full stop. To a certain percentage of people who are hell-bent on missing the point, this good-hearted attempt at diversity simply Will. Not. Stand. “Tired of all this SJW nonsense,” is the totality of a review from “Jonathan B,” in regards to Carol Danvers, a character who has existed since the ’60s. It’s not yet clear how obtuse you have to be to twist her actions into a statement that you, a (presumable) white male, are not welcome to see the movie, but rest assured the nation’s finest practitioners of dunking are already hard at work responding to these trolls.
Additionally, some of the first actual reviews began coming in last night following an advance press screening, and, unsurprisingly, reactions are overwhelmingly positive. True, this won’t stop the delightful insistence by said trolls that critics have all been paid off by Disney—along with the tens of millions of other Marvel fans whose online enthusiasm is almost certainly the result of payola from Marvel’s corporate overlord. America: now supported largely from underground payoffs to make people pretend to enjoy Marvel movies.