The Marvel Symphonic Universe

The Marvel Symphonic Universe

There’s a second, supplementary video you can watch here:

And a new Twitter account about temp music we made here:

Off the top of your head, could you sing the theme from Star Wars? How about James Bond? Or Harry Potter? But here’s the kicker: can you sing any theme from a Marvel film? Despite 13 films and 10 billion dollars at the box office, the Marvel Cinematic Universe lacks a distinctive musical identity or approach. So let’s try to answer the question: what is missing from Marvel music?

This video was made by
Brian Satterwhite:
Taylor Ramos:
Tony Zhou:

For educational purposes only. You can donate to support the channel at

Interviews filmed in Vancouver, B.C., Canada

The Hollywood Reporter 2012 Composers Roundtable:
The Hollywood Reporter 2014 Composers Roundtable:

Music Cues:

Daniel Pemberton – Orchestra Tuning Up (from The Movies (2005) video game)
Ramin Djawadi – “Test Day Eleven” (Unreleased from Iron Man)
Patrick Doyle – “8m52 Warriors Find Thor ALT” (Unreleased from Thor)
Henry Jackman – “The Smithsonian” (from Winter Soldier)
Danny Elfman – “Heroes” (from Age of Ultron)
Danny Elfman – “Farmhouse” (from Age of Ultron)
Patrick Doyle – “Ride to Observatory” (from Thor)
Henry Jackman – “A New Recruit” (from Civil War)

Temp Music Examples:

300 (2007)
Elliot Goldenthal – “Victorious Titus” from Titus (1999)
Tyler Bates – “Returns a King”
Titus owned by Fox Searchlight Pictures
300 owned by Warner Bros. Pictures

THOR (2011)
Steve Jablonsky – “Einstein’s Wrong” from Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen (2009)
Patrick Doyle – “Hammer Found”
Transformers owned by Paramount Pictures
Thor first owned by Paramount Pictures, then transferred to Walt Disney Studios

Henry Jackman – “Captain America” from Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)
Junkie XL – “Brothers in Arms”
Winter Soldier owned by Walt Disney Studios
Mad Max: Fury Road owned by Warner Bros. Pictures

Hans Zimmer – “Mombasa” from Inception (2010)
Michael Wandmacher – “Mass vs. Acceleration”
Inception owned by Warner Bros. Pictures
Drive Angry owned by Lionsgate/Summit Entertainment

Help us caption & translate this video!

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20 Responses

  1. elmertjee says:

    Always on point man! I’m huge soundtrack fan, and I feel the same way.
    Marvel doesn’t take chances with its scores, while soundtracks make 1/4 of
    a movie. (The exeption for me is Alan Silvestri’s Avengers theme). Keep the
    videos coming man! You just became my favourite movie channel! What are
    your favourite soundtracks guys? Would love to hear them!

  2. Lupe Walker says:

    I respect that you didnt do the bush league nerd wars Marvel vs DC
    comparison. Great vid BTW.
    Winter Soldier (the best thing Marvel has ever done) has an amazing themed
    score however they didnt know how to use it in the film. It’s quite
    unfortunate. You really hear how great it is at the end credits

  3. Steve Rudzinski says:

    The thing that gets me is that even the DC movies have memorable scores. If
    you asked me to do a DC movie theme I could very easily hum the Man of
    Steel theme, or even the Lex Luthor theme from Batman v. Superman. Zimmer
    (and Junkie) nailed their soundtracks and put true emotional reactions into
    the scores of those films. Those are scores you NOTICE in those films, in a
    good way.

    It’s one of my complaints about the Marvel films, the scores are just
    forgettable background tunes. And the MCU films certainly aren’t the only
    culprit at this. But honestly, one of my favorite things about Man of Steel
    and Batman v. Superman was how POWERFUL the scores were. And how they
    weren’t afraid to be in your face with the emotions of the music.

  4. Captain Spider-Man says:

    I’m glad I don’t really care about this sort of stuff as much as other

  5. EnterpriseKnight says:

    Winter Soldier’s main theme. I love it, it was stuck in my head for months.

  6. Andres Gaggero says:

    this is the reason I like dc movies better, cause with marvel, to me they
    are just movies, I don’t feel almost anything, I honestly cared so little
    in civil war too cause there isn’t that resonating emotion yea they were
    “friends” and now they’re “fighting” each other, but there never was
    “emotion” where I actually felt what the characters felt, I just knew I was
    supposed to feel in a certain way cause they told me to.

  7. Justin Fattz says:

    This is the net result of too many sheep rewarding copy/paste work with
    their vote (money).

  8. Olodus says:

    So true. It is a little sad that even though what Marvel did was quite
    brave (letting so many movies build together to Avengers) their movies will
    never be look upon as bold. Probably rather the opposite.
    They do try with music sometimes but don’t have the guts to do something
    original or use it in inspiring ways. I think about things like using
    “Ironman” (but only in the credits) or “Hocked on a feeling” in Guardians
    of the Galaxy.

  9. Henry Elliott says:

    DCEU has great music

  10. DaDavidVids says:


  11. Batnat says:

    One of my favorite and unforgettable marvel theme is Spiderman from Sam
    Ramis film. It has emotion, depth, and a lot of power

  12. RMLowley says:

    “Ive Got No Strings” from Age of Ultron really made me have goose bumps,
    but I think its not a original Soundtrack..

  13. CRAZEH247 says:

    I think you have it wrong here. It’s just that the main themes are not
    REPEATED enough in their movies to be recognisable enough. Ask someone who
    has only seen star wars once and only heard the soundtrack during the film
    and they’d have trouble remembering that shit too. The only reason it’s so
    easy to remember those themes so easy is because even if you haven’t
    watched them, you would have heard them over and over during the years.
    Marvel character film themes aren’t even repeated enough times in the films
    themselves so how would anyone remember them. But I bet someone who has
    rewatched Avengers or Iron Man or something like that multiple times would
    be able to hum the theme for those.

  14. MikeD says:

    To be clear, do they mean the MCU generally? Because the scores prior to
    iron man 1 are fairly recognisable

  15. zmunk says:

    Wait a minute! There is that epic Iron Man song thats by Black Sabbath.
    That is catchy as hell.

  16. EoghanMcCarthy900 says:

    Wow Tony is really churning out these videos, he just released one 4 months

  17. Stray Dog says:

    I specifically remember the main theme from Avengers because it sounds like
    the Soundgarden song that plays over the credits – ‘Live to Rise’
    If you’ve never noticed this, listen to the main theme and ‘Live to Rise’
    back to back and you’ll probably hear it.

  18. Jared Lingle says:

    out of all the marvel movies Winter Soldier was the only one with a
    slightly memorable soundtrack but again it was muffled by its already
    amazing story. I hope Spiderman homecoming has a good soundtrack or at
    least a Spiderman theme. no, they better have a Spiderman theme!

  19. Vincent Freiburg says:

    I still remember the main themes for Avengers, Iron Man, GotG, Civil War,
    and Ant Man. The other movies I’ll agree are forgetful

  20. Sams ChanneI says:

    Great analysis on Marvel’s music! It’s a shame that so many people will
    misinterpret the whole “risk” conclusion as being a flaw of the whole
    franchise in general. This video is discussing the *MUSIC*, not everything
    about the series. I’ll agree that there isn’t a huge amount of artistry in
    the scores or filmmaking but there certainly is in the scripts and
    characters and that’s what the studio aims to excel at – characters. I felt
    James Gunn did a great job at not only making Rocket Raccoon and Groot work
    at all but lovable and engaging in ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’. ‘Civil War’
    explores genuinely nuanced emotional depths in Tony Stark and Steve Rogers,
    albeit to a lesser extent. Good characterization can make up for a lot.

    But yeah, once again, great vid.