The first reviews of X-Men: Age of Apocalypse are in! And they’re not great. Some of them are pretty bad, in fact. But are these critics being honest — or are they just puppets in the hands of the Mouse?

So claims the author of a Change.org petition addressed to Rottentomatoes.com and “Audience and Movie goers” [sic], accusing Disney of paying movie critics to bad-mouth non-MCU superhero films. According to the anonymous petitioner:

There is growing evidence Disney has been continually paying critics to attack Non MCU movies. MCU movies are safe. They’re not challenging at all. Just like a comic book movie is “supposed to be”. They’re not divisive or thought provoking. First they bashed Batman V Superman.They cleared BvS out of the way, gave Civil War (which wasn’t a perfect film) an Oscar, now they’re going to work on moving Apocalypse out the way...

The author fails to cite evidence for Disney’s superhero payola scheme, but it certainly is a, um, compelling argument.

Films like Days Of Future Past did receive good reviews due to the fact it came out in 2014 when there was hardly any competition from MCU films. Had the movie been released in 2015 against Ant-Man it would have gotten the Man of Steel treatment. Deadpool would have also suffered the same fate however it was released in February when there was no MCU movies being released at the time and was not an immediate threat.

So clearly, if studios want their big-budget tentpoles to do well, they should schedule their movies to come out when their competitors’ films aren’t in wide release! (And maybe, you know, not make terrible movies.) What an amazing strategy. That’ll show those lousy critics and their Disney overlords.

Advertisement

As of this writing the petition has 456 supporters, so now’s your chance to get in on the ground floor of this thing.

Reviews for X-Men Apocalypse are awful — but is it just a vast Disney/Marvel conspiracy? [The Beat]