GtT: DC vs Marvel


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Rescue Squad
Dec 23, 2009
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Welcome to a new segment of talk I like to call "Gauging the Temperature" where I take the current temperature of a topic. For this discussion we will look at at the current battle at the box office between DC and Marvel. I did not grow up reading comics in fact most of my knowledge of the properties came from Fox's cartoons such as X-men, Spiderman, and Batman which all surprisingly still holds up today. I personally did not care about Superman unless he was paired up with Batman as I liked seeing the differences in methodology play out when those two are together.
During the 80's and 90's DC movies went unopposed at the box office with their Superman and Batman properties and this continued until Joe Schumacher's Batnipple debacle that set comic book movies back a few years. Fox revived the genre with X-men and we have seen an upswing since.

Marvel has taken the genre to an entirely different method building worlds and movies that interwove with the next while in the process keeping people glued to the seats to watch what is coming after the closing credits. Iron Man started it off and I remember people losing their minds when they saw Nick Fury on the screen talking about the Avengers initiative. This momentum continued until they released the Avengers movie which set box office record on the way to continuing the momentum for Marvel movies.

DC was not silent during marvel's recent run as they had their cash cow on screen again with arguably the best Batman yet in Chris Nolan's Dark Knight Trilogy. In fact DC set their own box office records with the Dark Knight and the Dark Knight rises. DC would go on to ride that momentum in the Man of Steel.

Here we are now with other movie properties trying to copy the playbook of Marvel who developed their property to a level that is basically an atm. They managed to make 90 million opening weekend off of a trash talking raccoon and and a talking tree that says only 3 words. You do not make 90 million dollars just on curiosity you make that by great word of mouth and people going back again. Guardians of the Galaxy transcended generations by combining an 80s soundtrack, humor, that "Star Wars" feel, with the comic genre. In comparison to one of DC's larger properties in Superman, Man of Steel made 116 million opening weekend which is good but when compared to Guardians of the Galaxy which is an unknown property you have to feel like DC is in trouble. DC will surely make money off of Batman v Superman but can they garner enough momentum to translate to their other properties like Marvel has done?
DC continue to nickel and dime on their animation "direct to dvd" movies but that is not going to be enough to bridge the gap that has formed between Marvel an DC, as the question of what will DC do after Batman v Superman which is still 2 years away. So is there a chance that DC can catch up to the momentum set by Marvel or is Marvel that far ahead?

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