The world of DC comics has always fascinated me. The plot lines were well thought out, their stories were the kind you could talk to another fan about for hours without getting bored, and the characters each owned the name they were given when DC created them. It’s funny to think all the heroes we love to geek about today started with two college boys.
When writer Jerry Siegel and artist Joe Shuster designed Superman, their creation went through a lot of stages, and six years of scouring publishing comic book companies, before their idea was finally picked up by DC and Action Comics in 1938. The age of superheroes was born, other comic companies hopped on the trendy train, such as Marvel, and from then until today, although there were a few bumps in the road the likes of which only a scarlet speedster could fix, graphic novels of the super genre have steadily been soaring in popularity. They took over the comic book stores. They concurred every dreamy-eyed kid in school libraries world-wide, supposedly doing their homework. And now they’ve stolen the big screen.
Only one problem.
Where the hell are the DC characters up there on that big screen? Marvel, DCs largest super-comic arch nemesis publication company, has taken over the stage, leaving DC Comics high and dry. How is it that Marvel is getting all of the attention as comic books make their way to Hollywood?
Don’t get me wrong, I loved Iron Man and the new Thor movie was epic. And like every other person up, down, and around my age group, I’m pretty physicked about that Avengers film happening next year. Marvel’s characters have made character legends, and the most successful superhero film franchise to date is still Spiderman, with the talented actor Toby Maguire. As superheroes progressed throughout the years and DC continued on in their sci-fi fantasy direction, Marvel decided to take the gritty, more serious and realistic path to creating their heroes, which no other company had tried back in the day, giving them the chance to spread out to a much wider range of an audience.
While Marvel Studios has done so well, the only DC film to really make the waters has been Batman Begins. Marvel has an upper hand that makes it a bit easier than DC to make a film that Hollywood would accept. Their characters are dark, framed to attract the attention of the male population – and they’ve been created with a much more realistic designing than, say, Wonder Woman or Green Lantern, who fly around New York City in neon super suits.
But times are changing, and the possibilities in film have evolved far. Take Avatar for example, directed by James Cameron. The characters were large, blue, sparkling aliens. CGI can be as real looking as your own reflection nowadays, and while Marvel has dominated the rugged realistic look, the dawn of DC Studios is on the rise. What film will bring about this rising? Green Lantern, coming out on June 17.
Ryan Reynolds, who is portraying the main protagonist Hal Jordan, had to perform every scene where there were super heroics in a stuffy, heat absorbing grey suit covered in motion sensors. Then, in technical production that grey suit was exchanged for a brilliantly vivid alien super suit that really gives an audience the feeling that Green Lantern’s story is out of this world. The aliens helped as well, but Reynold’s suit sold the show.
DC Studios may have gotten trapped behind Marvel’s great success, but with the kind of CGI technology the industry has been inventing today, it’s finally time to see the collision of Marvel and DC, and find out for real which side will win. I’m on team DC. Which side are you on?