The Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Blade film has been quite the source of excitement (and concern) for fans of the franchise. Ever since Mahershala Ali was brought out in Hall H at Comic-Con 2019 during Marvel’s panel, fanart and speculation have flooded social media as fans eagerly try to figure out what the film would look like.
While the character made a voice cameo in the post-credit scene of Eternals, fans have been losing faith in the franchise due to the recent string of errors at the box office and the streaming theatre, especially with concerns about more mature properties under the Marvel label, such as Daredevil and The Punisher. However, it seems not all hope is lost, since director Yann Demange, helming the Blade film for Marvel, has an exciting update with regards to the half-vampire’s rebooted outing, one that might have bigger ramifications for the MCU at large.
Blade is Rated R, and What it means for the Wider MCU
As reported by IGN, the director of Blade has announced that Blade will be getting an R rating. This directly means that a level of gratuitous violence can be expected from the film, given that Blade has always been a horror/dark fantasy property.
Blade director Yann Demange has confirmed that the MCU’s Blade movie starring Mahershala Ali will be rated R. Blade will now be the second R-rated MCU movie after Deadpool 3. https://t.co/fKxbXjgpXe pic.twitter.com/L4lsURCeGu
— IGN (@IGN) November 7, 2023
While this is a win for the fans of Blade, the fact that Marvel is making peace with an R rating for its mature properties opens up many opportunities for characters like Daredevil, The Punisher, and even Ghost Rider. However, Blade is far from the only property confirmed to have a mature rating. Fans have been excited about all the upcoming mature-rated shows and films that Marvel has promised to its audience.
Confirmed upcoming Marvel Studios Rated R/TV-MA projects 🩸
— MCU Report (@MCUReport) November 6, 2023
The fact that there are so many mature rates shows now, has gotten fans thinking about what other projects would benefit from an R rating. While fans lament that such a direction was not taken with previous shows like Moon Knight, others are actively lobbying for projects like Thunderbolts and Daredevil: Born Again to also receive such treatment.
Hope Daredevil born again should be TV-MA
— Jeremy Casas – Spider-Man (@JArriagacasas) November 6, 2023
An R-rated MCU project is yet to see the light of day. The closest that the franchise has come so far, is the Defenders universe which was produced by Marvel in collaboration with Netflix. All eyes are now trained on the Echo series, featuring Daredevil and Kingpin, which has received a TV-MA rating.
What are some other shows and films that could benefit from a mature rating?
As Marvel begins to focus on its street-level vigilantes, the opportunity is ripe for Marvel to create a separate label for its more mature projects. A lot of characters could benefit from a less kid-friendly treatment of their work, including teams like Nick Fury’s Howling Commandos ( a version of which features Werewolf by Night, The Living Mummy, Frankenstein’s Monsters and Blade), The Midnight Suns, and The Defenders.
Of the projects that are announced, fans are keen on seeing the Thunderbolts in a more mature light. Daredevil: Born Again is currently going through a complete creative overhaul, and seeing how the Kingpin will feature in the show might inform the rating that the show ends up getting. Further, characters such as The Punisher (who is yet to be confirmed for a project in the main MCU timeline), Wolverine (who will star in the R-rated Deadpool 3), and Moon Knight (who is awaiting a renewal for a season 2) will benefit massively from an R rated niche in the cinematic universe, allowing the franchise to corner a whole other niche for the benefit of the characters and the brand as whole.