An age-old debate of comic book lovers, Marvel vs. DC is one of the internet’s biggest online wars. Fans of both creatives passionately engage against each other to prove exactly which one is better! Both universes are vast as they include various platforms such as comic-books, video-games, television shows and commercial films. But, it is no secret that the marvel cinematic universe today is at it’s peak in the industry with their latest movie, Avengers: Endgame breaking records!
Also, as some of the highest grossing films ever, Marvel films have outdone DC films in box offices and otherwise. Here is the core reason as to why Marvel has surpassed DC in terms of cinematic universes. But be warned: spoilers lie ahead!
It all boils down to: Character!
It has been made clear that Marvel movies have performed better in theaters than DC movies in the box office through various ratings and reviews both online and offline. There is one main reason for this. And this vital cause is simply- “Character”. Marvel movie’s primary focus is on creating compelling characters and try to maintain character consistency whereas, DC’s simply isn’t.
Let us take an example of of the movie, Captain America. In the first movie, when our beloved hero, Steve Rogers is being beaten up and falls down, he delivers this dialogue- “I can do this all day” and promptly stands back up. When after a few years, fans go into Endgame or Civil War and hear him say this dialogue again, a personal connection is formed with the character.
Connection is Important!
The audience feels for this character and experience a sense of continuity. It’s as if the movie is confirming that this is the same character you fell in love with in the first movie. Of course, this does not mean there are no character arcs present in this universe! Each character goes through their own struggles, yet stay true to themselves.
In comparison, in Batman Vs. Superman, we see Batman as someone with an incredibly dark and gritty personality. There was no room for optimism or fun in Ben Affleck’s character. He refused to even smile during the run time of the movie! That’s why, fans were left baffled when it seemed as if his character did an entire 180 degree turn in Justice League. In the movie he was made to deliver one-liners and was to an extent, the comic relief of the film. This decision was made due to backlash regarding Batman Vs. Superman, stating it was too dark to watch. But, it backfired as this development made people feel as if they are watching an entire different character. This induced no sense of connect or continuity.
“We’re all humans in the end”
The major difference present is that DC treats its characters as tools to execute a story. Whereas Marvel treats its characters as flawed humans whom the plot is centered around. A DC hero is based on his/hers superpowers. On the other hand, a Marvel hero, on his/her personality. It’s the heroes that define Marvel, with the likes of Iron Man, Captain America, Captain Marvel, Thor etc. being the most engaging characters. In DC, the most engaging characters are the infamous, yet fabulous villains such as Joker, Bane, Lex Luthor etc. who remain memorable to the audience.
Humor is mankind’s greatest blessing!
Let us take a look at the overall context of both films. Apart from being way more emotionally engaging, Marvel movies are also indefinitely more light-hearted and funny. In an age of memes, the humor presented by Marvel is infinitely more relatable to an audience. Compared to the serious, grave tones of DC movies, it is more relatable. Marvel embraced the “millenial” humor and developed their films in such ways that the audience is reduced to hysterics. But that doesn’t mean DC did not attempt to get on the humor train. DC also tried to adapt humor in Justice League, but it backfired as it left fans cringing discomfort more often than ever.
Despite DC having brilliant cast, great visual effects and CGI and well choreographed fight scenes, Marvel has displayed far better bonds and made their heroes so compelling. The audience can’t help but, fall in love and keep wanting for more! Maybe on other platforms, such as television series or video-games, DC fares better, but in a battle of the films, its Marvel who takes the crown!