As Warner Bros Steps Away From Woke Messaging, It Can Expect Review Bombing From Legacy Media

While I haven’t seen “Black Adam” yet, the two things I could have easily predicted about it is that it was likely going to be your typical Warner Bros superhero movie that didn’t do anything we haven’t seen before but is likely going to be, at least, an entertaining way to spend a couple of hours.


The other thing is that it was going to be slammed by legacy media movie critics, not because it was bad, but because its creators didn’t put political messaging first.

Predicting these things wouldn’t have made me Nostradamus, just good at recognizing patterns. In this case, my dog could have recognized what was going to happen before it did. DC movies aren’t exactly known for carrying the same gravitas as Marvel back in its heyday but it hasn’t stopped them from trying. The DC cinematic universe has released some real stinkers when they’re not cranking out decent superhero flicks.

Legacy media critics are far more consistent. If it doesn’t put the message first, then the movie isn’t getting good marks. They might even call it dangerous if it looks like it might even hint at promoting any traditional values.

As Bounding Into Comics covered in-depth, critics jumped on DC’s latest outing with “Black Adam” with all the vitriol you might expect. Author Spencer Baculi makes the point that despite the media’s obvious bias they will never be accused of “review bombing” in order to make a film less successful on ideological grounds, especially since the lead is non-white:

In a continuation of Warner Bros. Discovery’ particularly rough year, their last tentpole release of 2022, DC’s Black Adam, has been met with near-universal panning from legacy media critics – and curiously (less so if one has paid attention to the ever-growing disingenuity of the media landscape across recent years), none of them have been decried as ‘racist’ or had their actions described as ‘review-bombing’ for disliking a film with a non-white lead.


Baculi drives his point home with quotes from various reviews from legacy media sources such as The Washington Post and NPR, all of which carry a similar message of it being another entry in the already-tired superhero genre, but Baculi sees an interesting pattern emerge from the reviews:

As noted above, these criticisms – overuse of CGI, uninteresting characters, nonsensical narratives, clear signs of studio meddling – are similar to the ones numerous fans have leveled at Hollywood’s recent attempts to capitalize on a given long-established franchise’s inherent audience base, such as Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, Wonder Woman 1984, or even the Star Wars sequel trilogy.

Yet – as noted by many, including YouTuber Ryan Kinel – no outlets are running hit pieces on detractors claiming that they’re bigots engaging in bad-faith review bombing.

Not only does “Black Adam” have a non-white lead, the movie even race-swapped certain characters from the comic, and yet critics are still putting this film down. It begs the question as to why.

The answer is likely that Warner Bros has entered the crosshairs of, not just legacy media critics, but the mainstream society’s overall tastemakers. The company is clearly trying to step away from the politicization that has infected so many other companies and movie studios. Warner Bros seems to be one of the few companies actually learning that going woke means going broke, and as such it wants to return to a kind of movie-making that courts fans and consumers, not a small group of angry activists who probably won’t see the movie anyway and all for mainstream clout that sinks the company.


We don’t have to guess that’s Warner’s aim. Its disgruntled former employees that were laid off as the company takes a new direction already confirmed this.

(READ: Laid-off HBO Max Execs Confirm Warner Bros. Is Ditching Wokeness and Embracing ‘Middle America’)

Naturally, this is going to anger the legacy media as infected with unapologetic leftism and social justice advocacy as it is. Anything that doesn’t carry “the message” is not good enough to be seen, and in fact, should be avoided at all costs lest people go see it and studios begin learning that they can get more money by not being politically divisive.

As of this writing, “Black Adam” holds a Rotten Tomatoes score of 90 percent from the audience and a 39 percent score from critics. As Warner Bros continues down its path of shaking itself free of the woke infection, you can see this pattern continue of critics lashing out at DC movies while fans remain relatively entertained. You shouldn’t be surprised to see this pattern emerge from any Warner creation, ranging all the way down to anger at CNN, which has already happened with something involving yours truly.

Baculi’s point is well stated. What these professional critics are doing is what they would normally call “review bombing,” and Warner Bros can expect more of it in the future. However, what it can also expect is a growing audience and more money flowing into its bank accounts, and as they continue to pump out movies we actually want to see, these critics’ voices will become more and more irrelevant.



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