(n) a condition in which society provides little moral guidance to individuals
My Role: Concept, Strategy, Storyboarding/Illustrations and UI
Iron Man is Dead.
The Marvel Universe unfortunately got rid of Tony Stark and his iron suit in their last movie, Avengers: Endgame (If you didn't know, now you know). The remaining heroes have always fought societal villains such as Nazis or corrupted governments. The loss of Iron Man's technological prowess leaves an opening for a new hero that can go against a more elusive criminal.
Fighting Cyber Criminals
Internet criminals commit vicious crimes as they hide behind computer screens. From illegal transactions to the dark web, the amount of injustices carried out on the internet grows by leaps and bounds every day. The dark web is home to some of the most heinous crimes known to man: human trafficking, slavery, pornography and more.
Cyberbullying is a growing problem despite efforts to prevent it, especially amongst adolescents. Most incidents of this crime are due to rumors spread online, and teen girls are more likely to be cyberbullies. A 2018 study found that cyberbullying makes young people more than twice as likely to attempt suicide. It's time for Marvel to unleash a hero that fights the atrocities that people do to each other.
Who is Anomy?
Anomy’s story begins in 2009, when he was known as David S. Reed. David was a computer science prodigy that lived a simple but happy life, with his wife Melissa and 5-year old daughter Hope.
One night, David miscalculated an algorithm just as an earthquake hit. When his drink spilled on the computer, he is electrocuted and sucked into the dark web. He was finally able to release himself after 10 years and although he didn't age, his daughter, Hope, was 15. Unfortunately, he came home just a day after she committed suicide due to the humiliation of pornographic images of her being released online. Filled with grief and anger, David returns to the dark web and creates a virtual prison called "New Haven". He uses geolocation to track down the man responsible for posting Hope's photos and imprisons him.
Superhero or Anti-Hero?
Anomy represents the lack of moral compass in online interactions. Social networking is exponentially growing in our digital age, yet there is no code of conduct for how people should communicate online. Anyone with a mobile device now has the power to humiliate or destroy others. In many cases, young people will use this ability because they either are not aware of or do not care about the aftermath.
Therefore, Anomy takes up the role of a vigilante to avenge his daughter, and to punish other cyber criminals. Anomy is a character that viewers can relate to and sympathize for because he suffers a loss that comes from the issue. He's a realist who sees the need for putting an end to cyberbullying. But despite his convictions, he isn't a hero because of his moral compass. Unlike a hero, who serves society, Anomy imprisons cyber criminals because it serves his own interests. This reflects both angles of our message: cyberbullying is wrong, but retaliation and revenge don't put an end to it.
Integrated Launch Plan
Because Marvel is known for planting Easter eggs in the Marvel Cinematic Universe to imply which film a character will appear next, we recommend introducing Anomy through a social media Easter egg hunt. Five months before the film release, we will create four pieces of content with Anomy’s symbol (a cryptic keyhole) hidden in plain sight. Each symbol will have a different number in the center. The content will then be sporadically posted across Marvel’s social media channels, and the Easter egg hunt will be announced in April, one month before the film release in May. The reason behind this is that most blockbuster films release in the summer to target young adults, who have the most disposable income for tickets and aren’t in school when the films release.
Consumers who participate in this contest will have to collect all four digits and arrange them in the order that it was posted to create a password. The first four participants to discover the password can use it to enter a microsite that we will create in promotion of Anomy’s film. The microsite will allow the Easter egg hunt winners to “enter the deep web” that takes place in the film, contain exclusive content and more details about the character. Winners will also get two premiere night tickets and a viewing party with the film cast.
Travel Inside of New Haven
Lastly, our launch plan includes a virtual reality (VR) in-store experience through a partnership with Walmart, Target or Best Buy. In the past, Marvel has partnered with different businesses to promote their newest characters. The most recent example occurred earlier this year with 7-11 to launch exclusive Deadpool themed products, sweepstakes, and its first ever augmented reality (AR) in-store experience. Because parts of Anomy’s film take place in the dark web, our recommendation is to set up VR booths in Walmart, Target or Best Buy so that shoppers can view 3D versions of New Haven and other worlds of the dark web that will be explored in the film.
Moving on Up...
I feel very fortunate to have had the opportunity to create a new character for a brand, even if it was hypothetical. Character development usually feels like work for a movie or book, but I know that creating a character is a multi-faceted experience for brand or park designers. In any sense, making a new character will always involve costuming, storyboarding and most importantly, story. Moving forward, I'm excited to do this for other projects. It's so nice to be able to breathe life into a character that can really resonate with an audience!