Marvel Studios has finally unveiled the first episode of Secret Invasion, its new series starring Samuel L. Jackson as the world-weary Nick Fury – and with it, the superhero show's opening titles.
At first glance, you might assume that the intro was illustrated but as it unfolds, you can see that the visuals look a little off, which is, admittedly, in keeping with the thriller's focus on conspiracies and shape-shifting. As with many Secret Invasion's characters, though, there's more to them than meets the eye...
Shortly after the premiere landed on Disney Plus, Polygon published an interview with director Ali Selim, in which he revealed that the intro was designed using AI technology. The news, it's safe to say, hasn't gone down well with fans.
"A lot of people will rave about how good #SecretInvasion is but, this show marks the first major invasion of AI on a major studio's piece of work," one critic argued. "It's utterly horrifying to think about and this is only the start."
"Secret Invasion intro is AI generated. I'm devastated, I believe AI to be unethical, dangerous and designed solely to eliminate artists' careers," said another viewer. "Spent almost half a year working on this show and had a fantastic experience working with the most amazing people I ever met… Looks like it was outsourced to Method Studios. I'm really concerned about the impacts of this."
"Disney/Marvel using AI to produce that horrific looking Secret Invasion intro rather than even think to use THEIR MANY ON-STAFF COMIC BOOK ARTISTS is just so grim," tweeted a third.
"Deeply disapointed that Secret Invasion's intro is animated AI art. The tech bros are going to see this as a big win, when it's only another symptom of the now-creatively hostile MCU production monster," a fourth chimed in. "Who cares if 'it fits the theme cause it's uncanny'. Disgusting."
Check out some more reactions below...
going from the beautiful end credits of She-Hulk to the AI mush opening credits of Secret Invasion sucks so much ass pic.twitter.com/nYik20P9SmJune 21, 2023
I really loved the first episode of secret invasion but them using AI “art” for their intro is just wackDo better Marvel pic.twitter.com/BCjOWA3xNtJune 21, 2023
Episode 1 of Secret Invasion was pretty good....but yeah, that AI generated intro ain't it, dawg pic.twitter.com/JOhj4r9sKjJune 21, 2023
The thing about the Secret Invasion AI opening is that was THE best possible use case for this tech! A perfect marriage of ever-shifting, uncanny, unsettling imagery that is Not Quite Right on every level. And yet it's still shitty and morally repugnant. Dump it.June 21, 2023
I started watching Secret Invasion. And then the intro happened.I immediately thought "wait a minute, is this AI generated?!"Turns out, yep, it is. I immediately binned the show after that. pic.twitter.com/0HkBWDxErWJune 21, 2023
Even ignoring the concerns over the MCU proudly dipping its toe into AI this early, the Secret Invasion MidJourney intro is repulsive. Genuinely embarrassing it was allowed to remain in the finished product. One of the more embarrassing moments of the streaming eraJune 21, 2023
seeing that marvel used AI to make the intro for secret invasion is SO fucking disappointing. there’s no justifying that shit, this intro for the show is absolutely terrible pic.twitter.com/rpmkVbrsxyJune 21, 2023
Also starring the likes of Olivia Colman, Kingsley Ben-Adir, Emilia Clarke, and Ben Mendelsohn, Secret Invasion sees several Marvel characters unsure of who to trust, when they discover that a shape-shifting race has infiltrated all facets of life on Earth. Cobie Smulders and Martin Freeman also reprise their roles as Maria Hill and Everett Ross, respectively.
"We would talk to them about ideas and themes and words, and then the computer would go off and do something," Selim told Polygon of the titles' design process. "And then we could change it a little bit by using words, and it would change."