Comparing Star Wars and the Marvel Cinematic Universe to Recovery from Addiction
Movies from the Star Wars and the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) franchises have captivated people all around the world. From light sabers to battle scenes between superheroes, it is no surprise that these films have been beloved for many generations. However, there is more to these two movie sagas than just exciting action and amazing special effects. Upon further examination, we find that Star Wars and the MCU have many themes and messages that pertain to recovery and addiction. In this essay, we will compare the parallels between these two franchises and recovery from addiction and explain how they can be used in complementary ways.
Heroic Journeys in Star Wars and the MCU
Much like the story of overcoming addiction, the narrative of both the MCU and Star Wars follow a typical heroic journey, in which characters must confront and overcome obstacles and hardships in order to reach their ultimate goal. Scarification and perseverance are always key elements to success, and this rings true for both the heroes of these two movie worlds and those struggling to become reclaimed from the bondage of addiction.
In Star Wars, we see the heroes of the Rebellion, Rey, Finn, and Poe Dameron, each undertaking their own heroic journey to create a better, more just world for their galaxy. Similarly, in the MCU, we can trace each of the heroes’ steps under the leadership of Iron Man and Captain America as they work towards creating a better future for the planet. This element of a heroic journey resonates with addicts and those who support them in a recovery process. Every step of the recovery process from detox to aftercare is a step towards a new, better future.
Patience in Adversity
Both the MCU and Star Wars also have unique and important lessons about the importance of patience and perseverance. This lesson is especially applicable to those struggling with addiction. Recovery is often a long and arduous road, requiring limitless patience and dedication. In the MCU, each of the heroes wins their biggest battles after they have endured and withstood long periods of struggle. Similarly, in Star Wars, much of Rey, Finn, and Poe’s success against the Empire can be attributed to their patience and ability to outlast the darkness. These lessons of perseverance and courage in the face of darkness can be seen as another parallel to those on the path to recovery.
The Power of Hope
The power of hope is another strong parallel between Star Wars and the MCU and recovery from addiction. In the MCU, it is Hope van Dyne, a morally strong and determined heroine, who ultimately helps the Avengers to win their winning battle against Thanos. Her faith and confidence are vital to the team’s success and her characters serves as a reminder that courage and hope can be a powerful motivator, even in one’s darkest hours.
Similarly, in Star Wars, we see hope being an undeniable force in their ability to defeat the Empire. Princess Leia’s unwavering belief in her cause and her courage in the face of evil serves as a political and emotional beacon of hope to the rebellion. Hope is also an important factor in the process of recovery, because it helps those in recovery gain the courage and strength to keep on fighting.
Surrender as a Necessary Step
The final point of comparison between Star Wars and the MCU and recovery from addiction can be seen in the idea of surrender. Surrender is an essential element in all of these tales, since the heroes must acknowledge that they cannot do it alone. In the case of Star Wars, the rebellious heroes are forced to trust and rely on the help of their allies in order to succeed. In the MCU, surrender, or the idea of accepting help and trusting in others, is also a key theme.
For instance, we see Tony Stark’s ultimate victory over Thanos in Avengers Endgame when he puts his differences aside and makes peace with his former nemesis, Captain America. This idea of surrendering and giving up control is an important part of recovery from addiction, because it requires acknowledging that help is needed and surrendering to the fact that only by working with other people and relying on outside aid can a person successfully become free from the bondage of addiction.
Risks & Counter Argument
However, it must be noted that despite this parallel, there is one major difference between the two. In both the MCU and Star Wars, surrender and reliance on others is only the first step and usually doesn’t guarantee victory. The heroes still must take it upon themselves to shape their own destinies and make the hard choices in order to prevail. In recovery from addiction, this is also true. Although help and support from trusted sources is essential, it is still ultimately up to the individual to take action and make the necessary changes to become clean and sober.
It is no coincidence that pieces of our popular culture like Star Wars and the MCU have messages that can aid in our journey to recovery. When examined closely, we can see the parallels between these two universes and recovery from addiction. From the heroic journeys of the characters to the power of hope in their victories, Star Wars and the MCU are excellent reminders of our own paths to recovery, and their influence can be highly beneficial in helping people take the necessary steps to reclaim their autonomy from the bondage of addiction.