Popular search engine Google has recently released its annual Year in Search for 2018, a compilation that highlights the trends and events within a duration of twelve months. And, in terms of movies, we are not surprised that the Marvel blockbuster film Black Panther emerged as the most searched on Google in Nigeria. The fever of Black Panther, even before its cinema release, spanned through countries and continents and dominated social media. Aside Black Panther, some Nollywood movies made it into the most-searched list – Kemi Adetiba’s political thriller King of Boys and The Wedding Party 2.
Avengers: Infinity War was a post-Black Panther Marvel movie that a lot of movie lovers and Marvel faithful trooped to the theatres to see, in part because it gave audiences an opportunity to see Wakanda again and the high stakes presented in its compelling trailers. And so, we could say that Infinity War siphoned from the Black Panther fame, translating into Google searches. And so was the sequel to Deadpool, another Marvel anti-hero vehicle that foisted itself in our collective minds with its brilliant promotional campaign, utilising a Lagos-based dysfunction – traffic. Along Ozumba Mbadiwe Road, Victoria Island, a billboard with an image of a languorously stretched Deadpool saying “I cannot come and kill myself in this traffic” encased in a text bubble was packed with resonance.
Then came the Taraji P. Henson-led movie Acrimony, with a controversy that scalded into social media, a debate amongst Nigerian Twitter users about the movie’s portrayal of an aggrieved woman who sacrifices for her husband only for him to them to divorce due to some circumstances. The Marvel-Sony superhero movie Venom also ranked as one of the most searched movies this year, a standalone project that explored the Spider-Man universe. What’s particularly interesting is that people are still relying on Google to make searches on trends and topics, which is indicative enough from a brand perspective.