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DC/Marvel comics made into movies: the good and the bad?

Discussion in 'Small Talk' started by Linkachu, Jun 7, 2011.

  1. Linkachu

    Linkachu Hero of Pizza
    Staff Member Administrator

    Because I enjoyed reading Red and Alex's comix rants about the Batman reboot thing...

    They're crapping out movies based on DC and Marvel heroes these days, and everytime I watch one I can't help but wonder "is this a total reboot, or does it follow one of the comic storylines?" I thought this while watching the new X-Men movie yesterday. Some of it was quite new to me, but then I've never actually read the comics. I just watched the old X-Men cartoon. :x

    From what you guys have seen of these various movies, which ones did your favourite comic heroes justice and which are completely mangled messes in terms of plots, characters, etc.? Any stand out as being particularly great, or reboots gone wrong?

    Gogo random comics to movie discussion. :)
  2. Doctor Oak

    Staff Member Overlord

    Every movie (or movie franchise) is, in effect, its own universe. They may draw their characters and inspiration from the comics, but it'd be wrong to say that any comics lead into or follow on from any of the movies, Marvel or DC.

    X-Men First Class really isn't a reboot. It's a simple prequel to the original X-Men movies. There are some dodgy issues in tying it into Wolverine (one will now have to assume that the Charles Xavier we see at the end of that movie is a mental projection or something), but otherwise - what happens in this movie leads onto the rest of the X-Men movies (although, there will be 2 more First Class movies to fill in the gap). It also doesn't really match up to the comics at all, as the actual X-Men First Class is actually Cyclops, Jean Grey, Iceman, Angel and Beast.

    That said, I thought it was a great movie, and still managed to have a lot of fanbase nods in there (like Moira giving Charles the name 'X-men' - a scene lifted right from the comics). It didn't get bogged down in any one mutant's story (as the X-Men movies did with Wolverine) and it had good pacing and characterisation throughout. It was pretty much all the good bits from the first two X-Men movies, with none of the bad bits.

    I don't think it's fair to comment on DC's movie output, 'cos Green Lantern is really the first attempt to try anything new on their behalf. In all, their organisation of getting these characters onto the big screen has been a ridiculous mess - which is absurd, since Warner Brothers owns the damned company. Marvel is steamrolling their way to what could be the greatest super hero movie ever made next year, and DC is still puttering around trying to figure their shit out.

    I expect Green Lantern to be enjoyable enough a movie - but when it comes to ambition, scope and consistent, quality output, Marvel has them cornered. I hope Sony don't manage to prove me wrong by fucking up The Amazing Spider-Man next year...
  3. Sir Red

    Sir Red Charms' Caped Crusader

    I have to agree with Alex, Marvel is absolutely destroying DC when it comes to the movies. Despite the Nolan Batman movies being terrific those are the only ones that they really released for a while (unless you want to count the fail of a Superman movie from a few years back :x). Oh, wait, Watchmen is a DC property too. But that still doesn't change much.

    Marvel seems to be releasing a whole slew of movies a year, and even if all of them aren't that great they do pretty damn well in the theaters and get the characters names and stories out there and can thus allow the characters to be sold in a number of ways. Merchandise, animated shows/movies and of course get new fans to read the comics.

    But as a comic book fan I'm certainly all for all of these movies coming out. Some are damn good movies, others are entertaining in their own right and those that suck where about characters that did not really interesting me in the first place. XD (I'm looking at you Hulk and Fantastic Four >=O)
  4. Doctor Oak

    Staff Member Overlord

    What Marvel are doing, really, is turning the comic industry into an actual, successful business interest for the first time in decades. The actual comics themselves sell relatively poorly these days - most issues only get 150,000 sales each, which is quite pitiful, really. By taking control of the multimedia interests spawned from those comics, though - as Marvel has been working increasingly on with the movies and, now, their animation too - they're turning their franchises into multi-million-dollar behemoths and basically defining a new way to make a living in the funny books.

    It's worth noting that, since the Disney buyout, this activity has actually significantly increased in this direction. And it's no surprise that it's very close to Disney's own business model.

    I expect that over the next 10 years or so, Marvel will begin really expanding their multi-media empire. Not just by taking back some of their movie licenses, but by taking complete control of their animation and video game franchises as well. And possibly moving towards controlling their toy and merchandise business more thoroughly too. Don't be surprised if the next decade brings announcements of Marvel/Disney snapping up game studios or toy makers.

    Meanwhile, DC is already owned by a large, multimedia empire and is still floundering at trying to make any headway against the faltering comic sales. It really is kind of ridiculous - and is what is leading to this stunt this year. I have no hate for DC - though I've never been all that interested in most of their comics or stories - but, seriously, they're tanking hard against Marvel - who are just going from strength to strength.
  5. Linkachu

    Linkachu Hero of Pizza
    Staff Member Administrator

    Being a fan of many of these storylines and characters, yet not an active comic reader, I definitely agree that Marvel is on the right track with its multimedia focus. Back in the day it was their animated TV series' that really drew me into their X-Men and Spiderman universes, and now the movies are helping to continue that interest.

    While the Fantastic Four and Hulk movies weren't great, they too drew my attention to those universes and made me want to see more. Further still, I hadn't even read much of anything from Iron Man or Thor before watching those movies (everything I knew about them, I knew from Alex), but now I love both of them to pieces. Who knows? Maybe one day I may even find myself picking up an Iron Man comic simply to see more about that crazy guy.

    I'm sure many hardcore comic fans dislike the hordes new fans that were born simply out of the movies alone, but you gotta start somewhere. Hopefully one day some of those movie fans won't simply be movie fans, and they'll attempt diving into the comic worlds, too. Until then, it's just nice seeing these characters alive on the big screen.
  6. I've obsessively read the few X-Men issues I own, along with an old guidebook (The Essential X-Men Guide, up to the early 2000s in comics), and some collections of my father's. I have supplemented this with knowledge from the internet. I think this tells you I mainly pay attention to X-Men in the comic world, but I enjoy Marvel overall. I haven't seen the movie yet, but I have a feeling it will disappoint me with its accuracy to the comics. Yes, I know the comic and the movies are in different universes/canons, but what the heck, Marvel? Emma Frost, Mystique, and Darwin weren't in the beginning! Floating timeline aside, the character I have the biggest bone to pick is with Darwin. Darwin is relatively recent, looking infantile next to Warren Worthington III and Hank McCoy who are in the sixties.
  7. Teapot

    Teapot Virtual Duck Enthusiast
    Staff Member Administrator

    This rings true with me, actually. I've seen plenty of superhero films - especially both Iron Man films (which I have watched repeatedly :x), but I wouldn't know where to start with the comics. There's just so much there, and I've never really found a way to jump into them.

    So in the end, the movies alone suit me just fine - and because I know that most Marvel films are pretty good, and do take place in their own universe, I don't feel bad about not experiencing the comics too.

    As for DC: Apart from the Batman movies, I haven't seen too much from them at all. Indeed, the best DC thing I've experienced lately has been Batman: Arkham Asylum.
  8. Doctor Oak

    Staff Member Overlord

    To this, I always give the response of starting with the very beginning of the Ultimate line. It's not that old (only 10 years, instead of 70) and it's very, very accessible to both newcomers and old fans just looking for a fresh approach to the old characters.

    The mainstream Marvel books are very off-putting for me too due to their huge wealth of material to cover. The truth is, unless you're Stan Lee himself, you probably will never be able to completely follow every detail of the mainstream Marvel universe. That's not the case with the Ultimate Universe, though and it's really not that impractical to manage to accrue a complete collection of it for maximum enjoyment.

    I certainly can't recommend the first Ultimates book (volumes 1 and 2) enough to anyone that has remotely enjoyed any of the Marvel movies of late. It's pretty much the foundation for the whole Avengers movieverse AND it's easily one of the best graphic novels you'll ever buy in and of itself.

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