Why are 'cinematic universes' so compelling?

You can rightfully think that franchises are an easy way to grab money nowadays. Instead of searching for new ‘forms’ to present a story, big studios are betting on established worlds where they can add another thing or two; yet, a lot of us -the audience- fail to find a harm in that. When I went to watch the newest Star Wars, I was conscious that it wasn’t going to be a breakthrough, but there was a bigger pull motivating me to follow the story. So I’ve been wondering: Why are we so compelled to get involved in these multi-film universes?

  • Probably because we like the idea of a moving world, constantly changing like our own. It gives a sort of balance and symmetry. That's my take at least. – SpectreWriter 7 years ago
  • Part of it is character and story - we get invested in these characters and want to see them face new challenges and adventures. And though the universe may stay the same, we are exposed to different facets of it, which is part of the fun! Learning tiny new details through the different films of the Harry Potter universe, for example, makes things fresh and exciting (such as new magical creatures being introduced such as the hippogriff, which ostensibly were part of that universe all along, but we don't learn about them until the 3rd movie; or the textbook that growls and tries to hurt Harry in one of the films - we've seen textbooks by this point, but never one that was alive; the Knight Bus, and so on). With the latest Star Wars, the universe is the same, but we are introduced to an entirely new set of characters, new droids, new villains, and we get to see what has happened to our favorite characters many years later (which is part of the allure of Facebook, actually - finding out where your high school crush has been all these years, etc.). – Katheryn 7 years ago
  • The Cinematic Universe puts me to mind of something that Turpster of the Yogscast once said in an interview - that there is currently a lot of interest in a non-linear form of storytelling (which is kind of how the most popular series in the Yogscast worked, specifically the Yogscast Complete Pack, Tekkit and Moonquest). I think outside of films you can see that in other kinds of YouTube series like Lovely Little Losers which uses multiple forms of media to convey story, or even TV shows like Doctor Who (connected to Torchwood, Big Finish, Novels etc). – Joshua Sammy 7 years ago

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