The Creed series is a continuation of the legendary Rocky film series, with Rocky himself the mentor character in the movies. It centres around the son of Rocky’s former nemesis, Adonis Creed, who seeks to make a name for himself in the boxing world. There’s lots of boxing action, training montage scenes, and of course, Rocky.

We weren’t kidding about the training montage scene, by the way.

Most people might think that the Rocky series ended in the 1990’s, but it has continued to flourish in the 2000’s. You might even think that the Creed series, which made a debut in 2015, has been the result of Rocky veering into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. We love Creed and Rocky, mind you, and we’re all for some boxing action. However, we can’t quite help but notice that Creed II does have similarities with many Marvel movies, such as…

 

1. Many actors work in both franchises

Michael B. Jordan is Adonis Creed in Creed II. Credit: Golden Village Cinemas

Michael B. Jordan is Adonis Creed in Creed II. Credit: Golden Village Cinemas

If you find the star of the Creed series to be a little familiar, that’s because he also popped up in a tiny little movie called Black Panther last Christmas. You know, the blockbuster that surpassed even Titanic on the box office list? That’s because Michael B. Jordan (not to be confused with the basketball player Michael Jordan, without a “B”) (in fact, there are many, many Michael Jordans around) played the villainous Killmonger in Black Panther and the feisty Adonis Creed in the Creed series. The “B” in Michael B. Jordan’s name stands for Bakari, by the way.

But Michael B. Jordan isn’t the only actor to appear in both franchises. Tessa Thompson, who was the powerful warrior Valkyrie in Thor: Ragnarok, plays Bianca, Adonis’ girlfriend, in Creed. Wood Harris played Gale, one of Ant-Man‘s allies in the titular film, and now, trainer Tony “Little Duke” Evers in Creed. Of course, you have Sylvester Stallone himself, who made a cameo appearance as Stakar Ogord (Starhawk) in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol II.

 

2. Ryan Coogler directed films in both series

Michael B. Jordan and Ryan Coogler. Credit: Den of Geek

Michael B. Jordan and Ryan Coogler. Credit: Den of Geek

Creed was directed by Ryan Coogler – who also did Black Panther. If you’ve noticed a pattern here, you’ve got a sharp eye. Ryan Coogler has frequently collaborated with Michael B. Jordan (they also did biographical drama Fruitvale Station), so it’s no surprise that the two co-operated so well in their movies. Creed II is helmed by a different director, but we’re sure he followed the tone set by Ryan Coogler in the first movie.

So yes, the name Ryan Coogler should ring some bells – and make the Creed series ever more similar to a Marvel movie.

 

3. Both film franchises espouse inclusivity

Adonis (Michael B. Jordan) and Bianca (Tessa Thompson) in Creed II. Credit: BET

Adonis (Michael B. Jordan) and Bianca (Tessa Thompson) in Creed II. Credit: BET

It’s a sensitive topic, but both the Marvel and Creed franchises are amazingly avant garde when it comes to inclusivity. The broad swath of Marvel characters speaks for itself (like Daredevil’s blindness and Iron Man’s former heart condition), and the Creed series?

It features a hearing-impaired character, Bianca – who also happens to be an aspiring musician. She wears hearing aids to help her along, but that doesn’t stop her from living a normal life. In fact, when Creed II begins, Bianca is already the mother of Adonis’ child.

 

4. The African-American factor 

Michael B. Jordan is Adonis Creed in Creed II. Credit: Golden Village Cinemas

Michael B. Jordan is Adonis Creed in Creed II. Credit: Golden Village Cinemas

Of course, no discussion about Creed and Marvel can be complete without a discussion of the African-Americans that star in them. Not many studios would dare to launch films which centre around a non-Caucasian character (although with films like Crazy Rich Asians, we’re finally beginning to see this trend being bucked). So to have launched movies like Black Panther and Creed, which feature African-American stars, is a big step forward for diversity.

 

5. Both are film franchises with a long and interesting backstory

Creed II. Credit: Golden Village Cinemas

Creed II. Credit: Golden Village Cinemas

Finally, what makes Creed II a truly uncanny, seemingly alternate version of a Marvel film is that it’s not just a mere sequel.

It’s actually the eighth instalment in a long and illustrious series, that began all the way back in 1976 with Rocky. How many other film franchises can boast so many popular instalments? The Marvel Cinematic Universe, that’s who. It’s like Creed II takes place in a bizarre, alternate version of the mainstream Marvel universe. In fact, we wouldn’t be surprised if the universe of Creed II was designated a number in the Marvel Universe.

Creed II. Credit: Golden Village Cinemas

Creed II. Credit: Golden Village Cinemas

The sequel to Creed picks up three years later, as Adonis Creed finds himself entangled in a legacy battle. You see, Adonis’ father, Apollo Creed (Carl Weathers), was defeated and killed by Ivan Drago (Dolph Lundren) way back in 1985’s Rocky IV. In Creed II, Ivan Drago’s son, Viktor Drago (Florian Munteanu) battles Adonis and carries on the grudge between fathers.

Dolph Lundgren is Ivan Drago in Creed II. Credit: Golden Village Cinemas

Dolph Lundgren is Ivan Drago in Creed II. Credit: Golden Village Cinemas

Will the match between Viktor Drago and Adonis Creed yield the same result as the one between their fathers? Or will Adonis manage to avenge his father?

It’s all in Creed II.

 

Credits: Golden Village Cinemas, BET, Den of Geek

 

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