Two Prominent Mountains: Marvel and DC Comics
Two Prominent Mountains: Marvel and DC Comics
  • Reporter Gwak Jun-ho
  • 승인 2015.11.04 16:01
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Do these rather child-like words sound familiar: Spiderman, Batman, Iron Man, Thor and so on? With no doubt, hero movies are this generation’s rising stars in the world of media. Why are people so into hero movies? What is so special about them? The most prominent characteristic of hero movies is that they can contain multiple genres such as action, romance and comedy, satisfying audience of various age groups. Furthermore, hero movies of these days are also adding philosophical issues such as hypocritical aspects of justice and self-realization.
At this point, it is reasonable to ask who’s behind this massive hero movie industry, and the most definite answer to this is, Marvel and DC Comics. Interestingly, Marvel and DC Comics are both prominent comics companies, but they differ in many areas such as characters, story lines, and even their ways of commercializing movies.
Firstly, Marvel and DC Comics differ in their ways of commercialization. While DC Comics and Marvel both have long histories in their comic world, DC Comics consider each hero/heroines to live in different times. Therefore, the heroes from different series cannot interact with each other, such as Batman and Flash. Due to this, DC Comics mostly produces series, and there is no relation between different series. In contrast, Marvel tends to construct a long period of commercialization. During this period, they not only commercialize series of individual heroes, but also the series where heroes from different worlds meet and interact. A good example of this is the movie, ‘Avengers’. In this movie, the major heroes from different series such as Iron Man and Hulk gather together and interact with each other. However, this is no longer a difference, because DC Comics has recently realized Marvel’s commercial power of bringing heroes together, and is planning to produce ‘Justice League’ and ‘Suicide Squad’, where DC heroes from different series finally meet each other.
Secondly, DC Comics movies tend to deal more deeply with philosophical issues, compared to Marvel. In Marvel, if the government does something wrong, the responsibility goes to an individual, making that person as the villain. Therefore, generally the government is rather a victim of injustice, just like ordinary citizens who need heroes’ help. In contrast, in DC Comics, the government’s faults are usually blamed on the entire government. The infrastructure is criticized. For this reason, governments in DC Comics are symbols of injustice, groups of villains. However, ironically, the confrontations between oppressive governments and heroes rather reveal the egotism of heroes, questioning the unnecessary position of heroes in society.
Even though Marvel and DC Comics are antagonistic to each other, there is no doubt that thanks to their competition, the popularity and hero genre movies flourished all over the world. There are many number of upcoming DC Comics hero movies in late 2015 and 2016. As 2014 was the year for Marvel, we should be thrilled to see how DC Comics strikes back.