The Marvel Universe has been expanding for more than 80 years. Over that time, all kinds of incredible stories have been told in comics, television and movies, but also in real life. That’s exactly what Marvel’s 616 covers – the real world stories that have come from the Marvel Universe.
The new Disney+ docuseries takes a deep dive into a very wide variety of topics. From the Japanese Spider-Man and forgotten characters to women in Marvel and the cosplay community, Marvel’s 616 covers it all. No matter what you’re interested in, there’s sure to be an episode you’ll enjoy.
It’s difficult and almost unfair to review a series like this as a whole when each episode is so wildly different. However, what makes it easier is the fact that each episode is so well done. You may find yourself thinking a particular episode covers a topic that doesn’t interest you and 15 minutes later you’ll be completely hooked.
The stories are all very emotionally charged, as just about every one of them tells a story about someone’s hard work to achieve a seemingly impossible dream, in one way or another. Even the first episode, which focuses on the long lost Japanese Spider-Man series, has some truly emotional moments. You may expect an episode like that to just be ridiculous and comedy-driven, and for the most part you’d be right. But don’t be surprised if you also find yourself tearing up at times.
One of the coolest and most unique things about this series is that each episode was created by a different filmmaker who simply came to Marvel with a story they wanted to tell. So not only are the topics very different, but the storytelling style of each episode is also very different. You can really get a sense of what each of these directors is interested in learning as you watch their episode.
Another great thing about the series though is that it’s not about those storytellers, no matter how big their names may be. Instead, they let these stories shine on their own. The real stars of the show are those who have been working with Marvel for years and use this platform to tell their incredible stories.
There is also so much fun footage and imagery for Marvel nerds (like me) to enjoy. You get to see all kinds of clips from the Japanese Spider-Man, behind-the-scene footage on the making of Marvel Comics and even a quick peek in the Marvel offices. Every episode has something that will get hardcore Marvel fans excited.
If I was to nitpick a bit, the only thing about this series that seems as though it could be improved a bit is the way the stories tend to jump around a bit. For example, in the third episode, “Amazing Artisans,” we jump back and forth between the life stories of two Marvel Comics artists. While it shows how their lives mirror and sometimes actually differ from each other’s, it also fees like the episode could have stuck with one or the other for longer periods of time in some instances. This is a very small issue however, as both stories eventually get their fair share of time to be fully told.
Overall, Marvel’s 616 is a must-watch for any Marvel fan. Not only do we get some great looks inside the world of Marvel and new looks at our favorite stories and characters, but we also get to meet and learn about the people who created them. Their own amazing stories will make you laugh, cry and develop a brand new appreciation for the Marvel Universe and all of its bizarre, entertaining corners.
All eight episodes of Marvel’s 616 will be available to stream on Disney+ on Friday, November 20.
Mike is a writer that has covered comic cons, theme park events, video game showcases and other fun events. He is a fan of theme parks, sports, movies, Marvel Comics and is a self-proclaimed “nerd.”