28th Oct2015

Avengers Assemble! The best Marvel brand for kids?

by ApolloXL5

In the Marvel universe there is certainly enough content for grown ups to nerd over, but there is still more than enough that is definitely in the bracket of children’s entertainment. Okay, so some of the themes in movie franchises like Iron Man are not exactly adult-only, but the stories that relate to Tony Stark’s billionaire playboy status probably mean that those films were never going to get universal releases in the UK. Despite this, Marvel seem keen on the Avengers, including Iron Man, to become the child-friendly brand in their universe. Take a look at the much anticipated LEGO Marvel Avengers crossover game for a typical example to the way they are thinking. Think of the Avengers as the ultimate super-team, designed to appeal to a wide variety of younger consumers, and compare that to more mature themes of teenage angst that run through the story lines of a character like Spider-Man.

The LEGO game is very much inspired by the images and stories generated in the two hit movies The Avengers and Avengers: Age of Ultron, but there is little doubt that the games’ content will be suited to younger players. The Marvel Kids website is full of content and games that are designed for pre-school children – and those who are at the learning to read stage – already. They have some simple flash games which are surprisingly entertaining to play, even if you are not five or six years old, but a full-grown adult. They also provide some very traditional child-centered content, like word searches and mazes.

The positioning of the Avengers as one of the first Marvel brands kids come across makes sense when you think of the broad appeal that a team has. Crucially, the Avengers feature real-life characters, mystical ones, alter-egos and heroes of both genders. It is the please-everybody brand. And you’ll see Marvel pushing this message in all of its merchandising, from bed linen to kids bikes and children’s trainers. After all, once their attention is grabbed, few children will fail to ignore the back stories of their favourite characters and find out more about them for themselves in other media, going on to explore the wider Marvel universe.

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