Warner Bros. is really not in the place that they hoped they would be when it comes to the DC Extended Universe movies. Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice was met with absolutely terrible reviews, and currently sits at a dire 27 percent approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Now, the first wave of Suicide Squad reviews have poured in, and they are not much better. That being the case, DC fans are not happy, and they have started a petition to get Rotten Tomatoes shut down.
As of the writing of this article, David Ayer’s Suicide Squad sits at a very poor 34 percent approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes, with 55 reviews counted. That is not at all what Warner Bros. wanted, and it surely isn’t what DC fans wanted. But some of those fans are blaming Rotten Tomatoes for the poor reception, not the movies themselves. A fan named Abdullah Coldwater has started a pettion on Change.org to have the review aggregator site shut down. As of this writing, the petition has nearly 800 supporters. Here is what the petition says.
“We need this site to be shut down because It’s Critics always give The DC Extended Universe movies unjust Bad Reviews, Like 1- Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice 2016, 2- Suicide Squad 2016 and that Affects people’s opinion even if it’s a really great movies”
It isn’t necessarily hard to believe that DC fans are upset about what has happened with Warner Bros.’ DCEU so far. Even for those who genuinely do enjoy these movies, of which there are plenty, the negative criticism has no doubt had an effect on things moving forward. However, Rotten Tomatoes merely aggregates reviews from hundreds of publications who are not directly affiliated with the site. So, it is a bit strange to go after them specifically. But, many people these days are quick to cite the tomatometer score as a means to judge the quality of a movie, and it has not been kind to the DECU thus far.
Defenders of the DCEU movies have been quick to point out that Marvel movies are consistently getting good reviews, and some of them aren’t assuming this has everything to do with quality. There have been accusations levied that Disney is paying critics to give the Marvel Studios movies positive reviews. This sentiment is being echoed in the comments section for the petition started by Coldwater.
“Avengers: Age of Ultron was a mess, it has a 75% on rotten tomatoes tho. Suicide squad has a 36%, reviews says that it was bad because it introduced many characters, well, what about “vision” on age of ultron huh? Or “hawk eye” on avengers (part 1), “Quiksilver” or that red witch. NONE of them had any kind of standalone movie. Coincidence? I don’t think so. Anyways it was just my opinion.”
There is no doubt that negative reviews can have an effect on the box office for these movies. Batman V Superman should have easily sailed to $1 billion worldwide, but it only made a little under $900 million by the end of its theatrical run. Granted, that is still a pretty massive haul by almost any standard, but in the modern landscape for a movie with a $250 million production budget, that isn’t great. Suicide Squad is currently tracking for a massive opening weekend, but if the word of mouth isn’t great, it could suffer a similar fate to that of Batman V Superman, if not worse. At least that movie had Batman and Superman in it.
A Rotten Tomatoes score is certainly not something that is overly scientific. A movie with almost entirely, but only vaguely positive reviews could garner a score above 90 percent. While a movie that is divisive, like Suicide Squad, suffers. But the site does not actively hate on all things DC Comics related. The Dark Knight currently sits at a 94 percent approval rating, and the original Richard Donner directed Superman has a 93 percent. So it isn’t a DC thing specifically. Someone has to take the blame from angry fans though, and this time around, it is Rotten Tomatoes, and not the creative team behind the movie.