RBB2015 Art

Voila!! It’s a couple of days late, since my author was very busy with personal stuff AND writing another RBB fic at the same time, but finally the day has arrived for my Cap-Ironman 2015 Reverse Big Bang art to come to light!

It’s my second year, and I’m proud of the fact that I’m no longer classified as a newbie! Also, that this year I have done a larger quantity of pieces to help my author along – in part, actually because of their fic. I took a completely different direction from last year, challenging myself to go down the steampunk path. Actually, the initial character sketches of steampunked Tony, Pepper and Steve (which I was pretty happy with) detailing clothing, patterns and ornaments didn’t end up being part of the final product, but I enjoyed doing them, and they definitely influenced my work.

This was the result:

RBB2015 Heart

This was a later drawing, a line in the fic which really resonated, and made me want to draw a mechanical heart. So I did πŸ™‚ Unfortunately, something about the red blood tubes makes it vaguely resemble a rugby ball… This was drawn in pencil and acrylic paint.

 

RBB2015Ship#2

The Iron Maiden! I’m not sure if I like it exactly, but here’s a depiction of the ship – Jarvis was obviously doing the laundry when I took a reference photo πŸ™‚ This was done in pencil.

 

RBB2015 Cap'n'Tony

So, this is an earlier scene where Tony meets Captain America for the first time. It was actually drawn after the next picture, because my author created a really cool opportunity to have a sort of parallel scene πŸ™‚ This was done in pencil.

 

RBB2015Masked

Last but not least, the original artwork!! (Or, rather, the original piece intended to be displayed for the RBB Challenge). This was a scenario I came up with, and my author rose to the occasion magnificently, writing a touching scene that also explained why Steve was in clothes and Iron Man was wearing his armour in a very convincing way! (Hooray!) This was done in watered down black acrylic paint, in lieu of watercolour or ink, which I had no access to, and pen for the detailing.

 

Second companion piece for: Staring Into An Eclipse

BB 2014 Pencil Final

My second piece for the 2014 Cap-Ironman Big Bang – this one took rather longer, even though it’s only pencil, as I had to redraw it. Originally, I was going with Tony being shorter than Steve, never having seen them standing side-by-side in the 616 verse and thus simply presuming that he was. As it turns out, they’re the same height!

Companion Art for: Staring Into An Eclipse

BB2014 Final

My first piece of art, made for the 2014 Cap-Ironman Big Bang – the final version of it πŸ™‚

I was trying to visualise what Tony’s headspace looked like when he had Extremis, which features in the story, and came up with the above; I quite like the contrast between the charcoal portrait and the very busy background myself, but if anyone is interested in seeing other ‘layers’, I’d be happy to post those up as well!

Firstly, I figured I needed a base code, so I covered the page in binary code (which was actually a translation of words, only I think I missed a couple of digits here and there). Then I wanted to reflect Tony’s time in Afghanistan, and his nightmares, which are always looming in his subconsciousness, so that’s where the explosions and the water come into the picture. The next layer is the white; those are semi-conscious thoughts, which mostly focus on improving the armour, because in my opinion, if he had Extremis, that’s a process that would become inherent to Tony’s mindscape; he wouldn’t be focusing on it all the time, certainly, but he’d be making those changes continuously. After that, there’s a layer of pencil, which you can’t really see, but that’s because it’s mindchatter, and I didn’t want to make it too obvious. Maybe you can find a ‘Steve’ or two? The last layer is made up of black blueprints and schematics, which Tony is currently thinking about on a higher level: the arc reactor, obviously, features pretty heavily, as do a couple of his current projects for S.H.I.E.L.D., and he’s experimenting with a new helmet shape that isn’t as potentially compromising, plus a new type of… something.

He’s a busy man, is what I’m trying to say!

Thor: Dark World Review Part 2

As always, my review just grew and grew… (you should see all of the unfinished Cap 2 drafts) and as always, I seem to have put off writing my response up tillΒ  – gosh, half a YEAR – later. Not on purpose, I swear. Here is part two of my review on Thor: The Dark World. It pertains to everything else, apart from the premise and the first act of the film, which I discussed here in my first review. The delay has been terrible, and for that, I apologise.

Have a beautiful shot of Asgard’s gate to the Rainbow Bridge to cheer you up!

Directed by Alan Taylor, Thor: The Dark World was, in my opinion, a very spotty film, especially given its title. Whereas in Captain America: The Winter Soldier, there is an underlying tension that is maintained throughout the film regarding the Winter Soldier himself, despite his minimal screentime, Thor: The Dark World doesn’t pull it off, with the titular Dark Elves neglected and underdeveloped to create a weak and cliched overarching storyline. While there are certainly moments of well-placed levity, including a brilliant cameo with Chris Evans as Captain America, the film is carried by Tom Hiddleston as Loki, whose fascinating mixture of acerbic vulnerability and smooth menace lifts the film into decent territory and creates the contrast required to make Chris Hemsworth’s Thor a more interesting character.
While I have made my feelings on the subject abundantly clear, let’s reiterate in short: the dark elves were incomprehensible, because of both motive (turn the world Dark. Then what?) and voice distortion, and had been pushed to the side until that final climactic scene so that everyone can save the day again. The plot of the film wasn’t spectacular; in fact, it was rather predictable, to the degree that I guessed that Loki wasn’t really dead long before it was announced in that dramatic reveal. However, there were some good scenes, especially those where Thor is back on Earth or with Loki, as well as the earlier scenes with Kat Dennings as Darcy. I enjoyed being able to clearly see the relationship between Loki and Thor change (as Thor grasps a concept that had apparently been evading him for centuries). Having Loki to counteract his booming brawn always makes for a more interesting scene, but in Thor: The Dark World, this was enhanced by the new freedom to pull away from that clichΓ© a bit since Thor was on his home turf and showed more of an appreciation for strategy and cleverness than he had previously displayed in the first Thor film. I felt that previously, Thor was too direct and arrogantly self righteous to be regarded with a deeper gaze (through no fault of Hemsworth’s superb acting; it was the character himself), and that the balance had to be created by giving Loki such a contrasting, painful past to agonise over. The juxtaposition is certainly effective, but also it just makes me a bit bored of Thor when he’s not interacting with a character profoundly different to his own.

Thor has been developed into a much more interesting character in Thor: The Dark World, thankfully!

On the other hand, with a character like Loki, it doesn’t matter who you play him against, because he’s interesting at the most fundamental level. The myriad of complexities that Loki is made up of, and the large screen time afforded to him and his arc is what sold the movie, for me. However, it brings up a debate which a lot of people have mentioned; that of the protagonist role. Named after Thor, the films so far have nominally focused on his story, but it is becoming increasingly clear that it is Loki who holds the audiences captive. Marvel has acknowledged it by giving the character solid expansion and time on screen, and while this seems to be a popular move, it rather undermines the story of Thor as the hero in some ways (although it makes for a better film). I wonder if there’s a chance of seeing an offshoot film with the anti-hero playing protagonist? I, for one, would definitely watch that!
Character-wise, Loki makes sense, and so does the theory behind his actions. Why is Odin so stupid? This is the crux of my problem in the Loki-Odin relationship – I find it very hard not to sympathise with Loki, because he seems, for the most part, to be surrounded by slightly boorish morons or Aesir who actively dislike him and cannot see past their furred cloaks. The Allfather gave up an eye for wisdom; would it hurt Marvel to portray him as someone who can make a good decision, or at least listen to reason every once in a while? Loki masquerading as Odin made better decisions than the Allfather himself.
It was therefore absolutely brilliant to have some Frigga-Loki interactions, and especially nice to see a woman whose strength lay just as much in her words and mind, as in the muscles of her arms. I think that the role of the mother was quite cleverly used as a device to bind Thor and Loki together, although I deeply regret that it resulted in the death of Frigga (who is played by Rene Russo). I do understand why it was necessary plotwise – for the two brothers to even think about teaming up, it couldn’t have been anyone else’s demise. Yet, there are so few female characters in Marvel, and the few that are mostly seem to be relatively younger women who are in a new relationship, or single; it would’ve made a good change, in my opinion, to also have a wiser matriarch, with a long marriage behind her and centuries of experiences to have shaped her. Somehow, even though I’d had this point spoiled a few months before I saw the movie, I managed to forget and thus be extremely surprised and somewhat angered all over again. The Fridging of Frigga was not to my taste. At all. Especially since we learn at the beginning of the film that she can cast illusions and send them quite a distance away – to Loki’s cage. As she had sufficient time to take Jane Foster and leave the room in the scene, I fail to see why the director didn’t simply make her appear to be dead.
Well, I guess you can’t use the same trope twice in one film, right?
My reaction at Loki’s death was surprised: but not for the right reasons. Hang on, I thought, Loki’s dead? That can’t be, no way would Marvel kill Loki off, it would be bad for business. Also, Ragnarok! Thus, after appreciating the very well acted scene, I concluded that Loki was Not Dead. And then I went ahead with my winning streak, and correctly guessed that Loki was the guard, and surprised my friend, who somehow hadn’t seen it coming πŸ™‚ I couldn’t properly suspend my disbelief at his death, and it saddens me a little, because it mean that I was watching the scene with jaded eyes. Although, they did get me at the Odin part, that was good. Overall, the second half of the film improved upon the first, and the ending was a great cliffhanger.
I really loved Darcy, her snark was great, but I didn’t like the intern of intern drama, especially when she seems to get together with him at the end of the film. One kiss, I can understand, I guess – a the world did NOT end, yay, we live! kiss – but Darcy was a minority as a woman in a film who is single and happy about it (or seemed to be), and I liked that, and appreciated it a heck of a lot. So that annoyed me. Also, the slap is being overused in movies. But Jane is still better in this film than in the previous one (you can find my opinions on her over here, I wrote a thing). On that note, I would also be keen to seen more racial variety, because as it stood, we had Heimdall, who was very well played once more by Idris Elba, and Kurse, played by Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, who is very briefly seen and then turns into a CGI berserker-elf. Who promptly dies. And that’s about it for diversity.
I believe I’ve mentioned it before, but the other thing that piqued me was the lack of acknowledgement of why no help is coming from outside quarters. To drop in a line is easy – the audience understands that due to budget constraints it’s hard to get other Avengers to lend a hand, so pragmatic viewers wouldn’t have been expecting anything, but really, a simple, “oh, Stark’s dealing with an emergency in Oceania, Banner’s off-radar and Cap’s on a mission with Black Widow and Hawkeye, sorry they can’t help” would have helped so much!

The last thing I wanted to mention is the slightly disturbing trend to the Phase 2 films so far: the metaphorical hanging up of the cape. In Iron Man 3, Tony Stark blows up his suits and operates his reactor out of his chest. In Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Natasha Romanov’s cover is blown and she goes to ‘discover herself’, while Steve Rogers distances himself from the role of hero as he goes on a personal on a mission to find the Winter Soldier with Sam Wilson. Now, in Thor: The Dark World, Thor decides to return to Earth and forego his princely duties on Asgard for the time being. I have no idea what’s happened to Clint Barton and Bruce Banner, but I assume that one is in psychiatrists’ hands, and the other has gone back to a third world country to lie low and help the locals.

The question is; how do they reforge the Avengers in Age of Ultron?What do you think?-Let’s call me Lily

Sergeant James Buchanan Barnes, a.k.a. Bucky, codename: The Winter Soldier.

My second instalment in a series of reviews of Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Don’t despair, more will come…eventually.

For a look at my reaction to the introduction of The Falcon, click HERE!

For a look at my reaction to the development of Captain America, click HERE!

Be careful, guys, this here is your warning that you are entering SPOILER territory. Does Bucky look vengeful enough to dissuade you? Honestly, watch the movie first, then come back. If you want to come back, that is :)
Be careful, guys, this here is your warning that you are entering SPOILER territory. Does Bucky look vengeful enough to dissuade you? Honestly, watch the film first, then come back. If you want to come back, that is πŸ™‚

Goodness, Sebastian Stan can pack his acting punches! Having read at least some comics, I am vaguely familiar with the Winter Soldier storyline, and definitely knew that he’d been mind-wiped multiple times and had his personality basically erased (probably through fanfic, if I’m being honest). So I am really curious what someone who didn’t know about Bucky being the Winter Soldier, or even didn’t know that he was being mind-wiped by HYDRA, got out of Captain America: The Winter Soldier, especially given that he didn’t actually have a lot of screen time for the titular character. In fact, what I really want to know was if someone who didn’t know the history of the Winter Soldier, picked up that Bucky was being continuously mind-wiped between missions in that short scene with Pierce and Bucky after he encounters and fails to kill Steve. Because to me, even though no one said it, it seemed so clear. And that was due to Stan’s acting.

I love Bucky’s characterisation so far; I, for one, am so glad that he’s not 12 years old. Or Steve’s sidekick. Although the newer strands of comics, which I’m a tad more familiar with, do portray him more like the MCU version. The power and emotions behind Steve and Bucky’s story comes across much better with Bucky and Steve as best friends since childhood, instead of a leader/follower dynamic; it puts them on the same level and gives more depth to their relationship. The fact that Bucky was once bigger and stronger than Steve, the person who always cared about and took care of Steve even after Steve’s transformation into Captain America and was saving everybody else. This is really important, because Captain America: The Winter Soldier shows how much Steve needs that – a friend who will back him up and offer the support that he requires; to believe in him, so that he believes that what he’s doing is the right thing. It also, I think, lends more credit to Steve’s reaction at the end of Captain America: The Winter Soldier, as Steve, knowing that he has been taken care of for years, wants to do the same for Bucky now, partly to repay him, and partly because of the deep and abiding loyalty and love that he has for him. It wouldn’t have worked if Bucky was just Captain America’s 12-year-old sidekick.

Yep, it was a Batman and Robin scenario going on there...

Yep, there was a Batman and Robin scenario going on there….

Something that I really love about Marvel is their character continuity, wherein they cast an actor in a role, and, for the majority of the time, that actor will stay in their role (a few exceptions are Mark Ruffalo as Bruce Banner and Don Cheadle as James Rhodes, who were recast, but both were markedly well-suited for the job, more than the original choices, in my opinion) for their entire duration in the MCU. I mean, can you imagine a different Tony Stark for each film? In this way, the actors in some ways canonicalise their characters through their stylised performance, as well as depict the development of their characters in a much clearer arc. This is really evident in The Winter Soldier, because we have the strong foundation of Bucky in Captain America: The First Avenger as Steve’s oldest and dearest friend; someone whom Steve loves deeply and looks up to in some ways, as well as a stubborn, charismatic soldier whose abilities are superb and who attracts the dames with his cocky smirk. This makes the change from Bucky Barnes into the Winter Soldier even more dramatic, because the audience recognises Bucky’s face and some of his movements in the Winter Soldier, but his entire attitude to life, the core of his being, has been erased, resulting in a vastly different depiction of character. But, and I stress this point, because that is what makes it such a breathtaking portrayal, there isn’t a ‘new’ character to take Bucky’s place. It is still recognisably Bucky underneath all the brainwashes and torture and experimentation that he has undergone, and it’s all conveyed without words, just the emotion that Stan carries in his eyes. Marvel made the marvellous (:P) decision to make the Winter Soldier powerful, strong, yes, but not in control (a bit like Clint Barton under Loki’s power), and in some respects, not aware of the destruction he has wrought because that is a consequence of his mind-wipes; that he is not aware of what he has done and who he has been. The Winter Soldier is a puppet; a broken toy to be used and abused as HYDRA and Pierce wished. This quality was so clear in Bucky’s plaintive, childlike protestation of “but I know him …” and pout, the resignation in his eyes as he prepared to be wiped again, accepting the mouth guard, knowing the pain was coming, but knowing he had no choice. Bucky wasn’t making choices for himself any more; wasn’t his own person, and that was what made Stan’s performance so heartbreakingly devastating.

…. yeah, Sebastian Stan made me feel like Bucky needed a hug.

Run, Bucky! Out of the fire, and into Steve's arms :P
Run, Bucky! Out of the fire of the war, and into the ice of the cryogenic chamber.

The Winter Soldier’s costume design was another point in Marvel’s favour. I really loved the way that the cybernetic arm was so smoothly crafted, a fine networking of interlocking parts that could lock together and provide him with a superhuman grip, as well as the way it just fitted onto him – not clunky, but a dangerous weapon that was intricately bound to Bucky and was now an integral physical part of him. Additionally, I always appreciate a comic shout-out, even if I’m not particularly knowledgeable, just because it’s nice to see where concepts are coming from. So while I don’t think that long hair on anybody involved in combat is a very practical idea, it did echo the Winter Soldier’s look, as did the black costume and assortment of weapons. One thing I will ask is: what is up with the smudged eyes? Because in comic-verse, this is one of those flimsy skin-tight masks that totally means that they can’t be identified (cue the suspension of belief), but in the film, it looked like smudged raccoon eyes? I’m not sure if it’s a side-effect because of his goggles or what; I’d really like to know.

Raccoon eyes :)
Raccoon eyes πŸ™‚

However, in saying all of that. I am really disappointed in the lack of back-story of Bucky meeting with Natasha in the Red Room; that has always been a vital part of their story (and relationship, because the Black Widow and the Winter Solider are an item for quite a long time in most versions), and I was really interested in seeing that modernised and negotiated by Scarlett Johansson as Natasha Romanov. I knew it wouldn’t be explored in depth in this film, but I did want at least a hint that Marvel was going to use it, because 1) it’s in practically every version of Marvel as far as I know, 2) it provides a great link between Natasha and Steve, as it gives them a shared motivation: wanting to snap Bucky out of it (otherwise, as we saw, Natasha would think that Steve is just wasting his time, because she knows intimately that second chances are a risky business) and 3) it was a genuinely interesting back-story that could have led to an origins-type film with Natasha and Bucky negotiating the Red Room, and how Natasha got out of that environment alive. Instead, it wasn’t mentioned at all. In fact, they made up a new story and acted like it didn’t happen – here, Bucky was simply another antagonist that Natasha had faced, albeit one that was more skilled than anyone she’d encountered before. There is a theory going round which tries to assert that as Natasha is an unreliable narrator, she’s covering up her emotional past with this story of being shot and not telling Steve the whole story, which is possible, but a bit unlikely in my opinion, simply because I don’t think that Marvel would want to confuse viewers that much.

One last quibble about the Winter Soldier himself; throughout the film he is described as a ghost, someone who slips past systems and kills and then disappears completely. Well, we don’t really see much of that at all, do we? Instead, we see daylight confrontations, gunfights and dozens of civilian witnesses! I know that this is because such things create more oomph and impact as action sequences, but it would have been nice to see the spectre-like qualities of the sniper in the Winter Soldier – his primary role in comic-verse – to shine through, Maybe it will be covered in the next film in which Bucky is part of? As Sebastian Stan told several interviewers, including here (which offers a very comprehensive look at Stan’s views on the film and his character and the future of Bucky), he didn’t find out that he would be the Winter Soldier until a year ago, and didn’t even know the title of Captain America: The Winter Soldier until it was announced at Comic Con by Marvel; so it stands to reason that Marvel is just keeping as much under wraps as possible.

Sebastian Stan’s acting is incredible πŸ˜€ I’m looking forward to seeing more of him. In the seven films that he is still contracted to make with Marvel. I was completely taken aback by that; that Stan had agreed to a nine film contract with Marvel. That’s going to keep him busy for, what, the next decade at least? I hope Marvel makes it interesting, both for his sake and ours.

The Potential of Jane Foster

I recently watched Thor: The Dark World, which I’ll be getting to in a later post (I felt that this deserved its own, because it’s more encompassing than Jane’s character as seen in Thor: The Dark World).
Jane Foster, reincarnated anew for the Marvel films, could have been the greatest woman to appear in the Marvel Cinematic Universe to date. She truly could.
In various of the Marvel comics universes, Jane is usually depicted as a nurse who works for, and who quickly becomes romantically entangled with Thor’s human alter-ego, Dr. Don Blake. In some more recent cases, she has been a doctor who works alongside Dr. Blake, as Marvel has begun to give more women positions of authority, but one thing remains true: she is always the supporting character, the love interest who is usually seen in conflict with Sif from Asgard, and who enjoys the excitement of the forbidden love trope due to Odin’s disapproval.
For what I believe could have been a multitude of reasons, Marvel decided not to use the concept of a hidden identity with Thor at all, and the character of Dr. Don Blake, the form into which Odin forced Thor into when he was sent to Midgard (Earth) when exiled, has yet to be mentioned at all. It is my belief that he may be referred to as the persona Thor takes on Midgard in the announced Thor 3, but it seems that Marvel has scrapped the entire storyline thus far. This renders Jane Foster, as she appears in comic-verse, completely obsolete. Hence, when Marvel started its new film franchise, it had to re-create her character – find her a new job in this new world that would mean she could easily get into contact with Thor upon his arrival on Midgard, and thus retain her role as a main supporting character.
This, in my opinion, could have been Marvel’s biggest chance to create a modern, truly identifiable woman and push the depiction of women on screen to a higher level of realism. And, to be quite frank, in my (biased, subjective) opinion, Marvel did not do this completely. Maybe mostly. But definitely not in the elegant way that I had hoped for.

Right now, in films, the only strong women are those who are seen picking up a weapon and fighting – becoming ‘one of the guys’. This seems to be following Germaine Greer’s interpretation of women as effectively having to become transvestites and lose their status as a woman in order to succeed in a man’s world. For example, to take the character of Pepper Potts; many people commented that in Iron Man 3 she becomes a strong woman and gets to “do more”. Well. Yes, she gets more action, but does that make her a stronger woman? Why does she have to pick up the suit and kill Killian to be justified as a strong independent woman who saves Tony, when she’s done so hundreds of times in her role as PA, friend and CEO? Why can people not see Pepper as she is; a powerful, articulate woman in her own right, who steps up and helps Tony in any way she can because she is a loyal friend and lover?

Marvel does have a spectrum when it comes to level of physicality shown by its female characters, ranging from Jane on one end of the extreme, to the likes of her intern Darcy Lewis and Dr Simmons, who are occasionally handy with a tazer, to Pepper Potts, who engages in violence in Iron Man 3 and displays the capability of violence way back in Iron Man 1 (she kills Obadiah Stane, remember?) to women who have made fighting their career, and are the epitome of the ‘attractive woman warrior’ – Natasha Romanov (the Black Widow), Agent May and Sif. However, the majority of the women do use weapons, and are inviting the view that the only women who deserve to be on screen are those who can be labelled as ‘bad-ass’, or who have successfully negotiated their sexuality in order to integrate themselves into a patriarchal society. The problem with so many ‘strong warrior women’ is that they set unbelievable expectations for women. So girls end up thinking that they aren’t good enough, that they can’t succeed as women, because they don’t have the ability to fall down four stories and shoot out all the guards in the process. It also means they now don’t identify with any of the characters, since the male characters are also depicted as very physically capable and strong (not to mention the under-representation of racial and sexual diversity).
This is where Jane comes in. Jane is given a position of relative authority: she is an astrophysicist, which suggests her high intellect, capacity to imagine and innovate, and determination in a hard science field that is male-dominated. She has an intern. What’s more, Marvel spends quite a bit of screen time on Jane in both Thor and Thor: The Dark World. I believe that in Jane’s character, Marvel has begun to show one of the newer strands of feminist movement, wherein a woman does not have to adopt a man’s role in order to succeed, but should be accepted as herself, as a real, happy, successful woman, not because she “can do anything a man can do” but by accepting everything that she is, whether she’s a warrior or an accountant or a stay at home mum. Because compared to the other women in the MCU at the moment, Jane is the only woman who does not fight physically. Yes, there are other characters who are similar to her, such as Dr. Jemma Simmons in the Marvel T.V. spin-off Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., but even she renders a man unconscious in Episode 7.
I think it’s great that we have Jane’s intelligence and physical normality (also why I think a lot of people picked up on Darcy – she’s just a normal early 20s student concerned with her iPod and matchmaking her friend with this hot dude that she likes), rather than another super-capable spy/assassin/fighter like Natasha Romanov. Natasha is amazing, but not all women are like her. Jane isn’t that tough. She can’t kill a man with her hands and she doesn’t have a ninja move like the thigh strangle-hold. The point is, neither can I. Neither can any of the women I know.
Jane Foster enters the MCU and shows girls that their brains can be just as heroic as their bodies. That intelligence is strong as well. She’s (mostly) realistic. Being a strong woman doesn’t mean giving up sexuality and not being attracted to men at all. In order to appreciate ourselves, we don’t have to be blind to the other sex. One can point out aesthetically pleasing men, can date men, can interact intimately with men and marry men, and still be an independent woman. It is possible, and many women do it. Jane does this, to some extent. Yes, she giggles when she sees Thor. Yes, she’s attracted to him. But what often gets overlooked is that Thor is also her science project. She has spent her entire life studying space, and then suddenly, she literally bumps into an alien from another realm. Thor becomes the biggest bit of proof she’s ever gotten – of course she’s going to try to stay close to him. He IS science. In Thor: The Dark World, this is expanded upon, as Jane is now placed in an unfamiliar environment and has the opportunity to explore Asgard and experience the ‘magic’ of the Aesir.
Now, where Marvel stumbled, in my opinion: firstly, in pushing the agenda of the Hollywood romance, and secondly, succumbing to the bad-ass trope.

In a way, I believe that Jane Foster is the truest depiction of a scientist that is given in the MCU. Bruce Banner, Tony Stark; while being scientists, they have motivations other than the desire to learn; to gather more knowledge, and they are both, at the end of the day, very self-serving. Meanwhile, Jane has studied astrophysics all of her life, without being able to verify if she was getting anywhere, if her assumptions were right, for the sake of the science itself. She is characterised by her determination and perseverance in the face of obstacles such as S.H.I.E.L.D. and a broken Bifrost. She doesn’t give up after Thor goes back to Asgard, she continues her research.
In Thor, we don’t get this impression strongly enough. In Thor, most of what I saw was Jane apparently falling deeply in love with someone whom she’d known for, what, 2 days? I felt that was unrealistic. I felt that Marvel, instead of focussing on Jane as a character, stretched the romantic love story aspect of the plot to such an extent as to render it unbelievable. In trying to provide for a Hollywood romance, Marvel flattened what could have been a magnificent three-dimensional depiction of a woman, of a person. They do rectify this somewhat in Thor: The Dark World, but the result is a character without a strong foundation to build on.

 

Secondly, in Thor: The Dark World, I thought that Marvel fell into the trap of trying to force Jane to be a bad-ass. The slaps, an overused trope of female indignation, didn’t quite fit into the film, in my opinion, and seemed to be an attempt to satisfy the demographic that thinks strength can only displayed in physical shows of violence.So by the end of Thor: The Dark World, we are left with all of this potential, all the beauty and strength and awesomeness of what Jane Foster could be, and it is overlooked by the romantic aspect of Thor and her relationship (as well as the frankly uninspiring plot). Which, to me, was extremely disappointing.