Marvel is the real MVP
By Chelsea Everman
Marvel was a big part of my childhood and still holds a very important place in my heart today. Growing up my cousin would always take me to the Comic-Con conventions when they came to Lexington. This is where my love for Marvel grew past that basic love of their films and into a love for the brand itself. This convention is where my love of superheroes started.
While I won’t argue for Marvel movies because we all know they’re already much better than DC movies, I will argue the point that Marvel is just an overall better brand with the best superheroes around.
The first comic book I ever bought was Captain America. From then out, my love of comics grew. I have learned that comics are actually really cool to hold on to and read. The very first Marvel comic book was published in 1939 and introduced ‘The Human Torch.’ The Human Torch is a founding member of the Fantastic Four which, in my opinion, is “fantastic.” If you look at all of the Fantastic Four’s superpowers and compare them to Suicide Squad you will see how much better the Fantastic Four are. The Fantastic Four have far more experience and could kick Suicide Squad’s butt. The original Fantastic Four members are Mister Fantastic, Invisible Woman, Thing and Human Torch.
Mister Fantastic’s superpower is elasticity, so he can stretch unbelievable measures. Invisible Woman’s superpower is invisibility. The Thing has rock-like skin, superhuman strength, stamina and durability. Human Torch’s superpower is the fiery form that serves as a damage shield.
The first Suicide Squad members are Johnny Sorrows, Rustam, Doctor Polaris, Emerald Express and Lobo. Johnny Sorrows’ superpower is that he can teleport from place to place. The Fantastic Four would crush the Suicide Squad literally, I mean, the Thing is made out of stone.
Ignoring the obviously superior characters Marvel has developed, the comics are much more enticing than DC Comics are. When you read DC Comics, you get a great storyline and character build up, but when you read a Marvel comic you are drawn into the world of the superhero you are reading about. The storylines of Marvel are easily more cinematic than DC. That is why the DC movies don’t even hold up to the slightly higher expectation you are given after reading a DC comic. This is evidence that Marvel is an overall better comic. If DC was truly better, don’t you think that they would be able to show their great writing abilities in cinema as well?
In conclusion, Marvel comics is so much better than DC. Just with the superheroes powers and abilities alone, they would win the war. Marvel comics and movies are a force to be reckoned with. DC comics, try as they might, never have lived up to their expectations in film or in writing. When it comes to the realm of superhero brands, DC will forever live in the shadows of even Marvel’s earliest works.
In defense of the Distinguished Competition
By Blake Vickers
Man of Steel was a bleak, polarizing mess. Justice League was a Frankenstein-esque monster of a film sewn together by two vastly different directors. Batman v. Superman was a bizarrely written and bloated film that filmmakers seemed to think they were making high art. And Suicide Squad? I’m positive that it was written by middle schoolers, and there’s not a soul that can convince me otherwise.
I’m not here to defend the excrement that has made up a majority of the films that make up DC’s shared film universe. When it comes to the movies, Marvel is kicking their honky tonk on every front. But DC Comics as a whole is a company that I’ll go down defending and cherishing until my dying day. Far too often people judge Marvel or DC solely on their film adaptations People look past the animated adaptations, the video games and the actual comic books that make up their source material. With all that in mind, DC outclasses Marvel in almost every way.
DC doesn’t necessarily only make bad films. There’s a little series directed by Christopher Nolan that comes to mind. The Dark Knight trilogy is without question, the most critically acclaimed set of comic book movies ever made, because they weren’t just good comic book movies, they were good movies in general. In terms of plot and character, no other comic book film has matched their quality since. That’s not to mention any of the other good movies that DC has put out either. Wonder Woman was a cultural milestone. The Christopher Reeve Superman films, at least the first two, are bona fide classics. And look, Aquaman wasn’t perfect by any means. It was 20 minutes too long, and it had a god awful soundtrack; however, there’s a Lord of the Rings scale battle with laser sharks, Crab people with cannon shells and Jason Momoa riding into battle on a kraken voiced by Julie Andrews. Where else can you see that?
Outside of the films and comics, DC has also done really well in the video game department. The Arkham series, which includes Batman: Arkham Asylum, Batman: Arkham City, Batman: Arkham Origins and Batman: Arkham Knight, are all fantastic games. They’re basically Batman simulators that also function as some of the most engaging open world games of the last decade. We also can’t discount the Injustice games. For those unaware, Injustice 1 and Injustice 2 are made by the same studio that makes Mortal Kombat. So think Mortal Kombat but with DC characters. They’re both highly acclaimed with intriguing storylines and pretty good tie in comics. Onto the spectrum of animated content, which I’m not as familiar with. We have the extremely popular, Emmy-winning Batman: The Animated Series as well as other acclaimed shows like Teen Titans, Young Justice and Justice League Unlimited.
When it comes to actual comic books, DC has always been leaps and bounds ahead of Marvel. Watchmen, The Dark Knight Returns, V for Vendetta, All Star Superman and Kingdom Come stand out as some of the most acclaimed stories in the medium. They also rank as some of the finest things I’ve ever read period. DC isn’t just successful with their prestigious books. Series like Geoff Johns’ Green Lantern, Gail Simone’s Secret Six, Scott Snyder’s Batman and Brian Azzarello’s Wonder Woman are all examples of classics from the past decade. Both companies have had their ups and downs over the past 60 years. I don’t think either of them came out of the ‘90sin good shape, but DC has been far more consistent in putting out quality writing.
Apart from DC’s mainstream line of comics, their other products have also had a major impact on the industry and pop culture at large. Their Vertigo universe in particular has been incredibly important, luring in legendary creators like Grant Morrison, Garth Ennis, Neil Gaiman, Bryan K. Vaughan and the incomparable Alan Moore. Iconic books like Sandman, Swamp Thing, Y: The Last Man, Preacher, Hellblazer and more came out during Vertigo’s reign. The mature label allowed the creators to have more control and freedom in their work, leading to complex storylines. For example, if you look past the crude humor in Preacher you’ll find a heartfelt satire chronicling the dangers of religious fundamentalism and toxic masculinity. Y: The Last Man is a simultaneously charming and devastating coming of age story that also reads like a gender studies class. While the Vertigo line has been out of print for a while now, DC has effectively brought it back with the Gerard Way helmed Young Animals imprint.
DC has often been accused of being dark and gritty just for the sake of it. And yeah, they’ve made some pretty high profile missteps in trying to achieve that in the last couple years. But for every grim misfire like Batman v Superman there’s a masterpiece that transcends the genre like The Dark Knight or Watchmen.