When I was young comic books and superhero movies were the places I my imagination could escape to. There was never much thought into it, I never knew the politics of it all. I learned to read using not just the funny pages but comic books and Michael Keaton and Tim Burton’s Batman was one of the best thing to happen to me. I loved Christopher Reeves
and even though I was 20, I was beyond excited when the X-Men Movie franchise started. )
I knew that Marvel and DC were different and that there were independent labels as I got older and I worked in tech support for AOL when they first opened as a teenager because I was one of those kids playing “Oregon Trail” and I taught myself how to code and even do ascii art, back then there weren’t a lot of people who already had extensive history with dial-up modems and what they could do. When I was working at AOL I had already been using BBS’s to telnet into text-based RPG MUDDs and when I started getting on BBS’s I was using a 300 Baud Modem. Imagine getting a word every 30 seconds.
I bring up AOL because everybody got stock options and they were good, and then AOL merged with Time Warner and those who weren’t smart enough to sell their stock before the merger lost tons of money. Suddenly AOL Time Warner was this MASSIVE corporation and I saw that DC Comics was part of this. I’m still really young here, so I’m not sure how this all works. Technology moves at the speed of light, and jobs get outsourced and tech support and jobs like working Terms of Service get sent to Asia and instead of having a great job with awesome stock options, now you are doing retention. People are using those pesky disks as coasters and target practice and you move on before you have a serious nervous break down.
But there was the “WB” network which had Smallville and for ten wonderful years the lore of Superman was really done to such a perfection and during that time was a merger with CBS to be the CW. There was a few attempts at other Superman TV shows (Lois and Clark) and other Superman reboots and wow did the Batman movies go from really good to awful. Until Christopher Nolan came around.
There were X-men movies, Origins, there were AWESOME Spiderman movies and some pretty awful attempts at Hulk, Darvedevil, Electra movies.. But things got competitive and things started becoming obvious. The Marvel Cinematic Universe started there about the same time that the Batman reboot began and Iron man, a 3rd rate comic book character, and a script that nobody wanted to direct was picked up and Jon Favrou did and a chance was taken on an actor, an amazing actor who had made a lot of mistakes and Robert Downer Jr., Gweneth Paltrow, Terrence Howard launched Marvel Studios in a big way and with Joss Whedon’s help they took Shield and again The Avengers, the B or C team to gross monster box office dollars.
That’s when things got really confusing and I started to get a little pissed off and the big studio licensing X-men and Spiderman and Marvel having carte blanche with Shield was this masterful mess of things that CANT HAPPEN. Specifically X-men and Shield. They are intertwined in the comic book world, but because Fox owns the rights to X-men and Marvel owns Shield and some shared characters (Quicksilver and Scarlett Witch being the best example) the word mutant can’t be used and origins can’t really be explored. But if there is one thing that the Marvel Universe has done since it started, is they have planned well and other than sharing characters in the last two movies both the television shows and movies actually lend a hand to each other along with the one shots. If you have only watched the Marvel movies and not watched Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D or Agent Carter you have missed out on some serious Easter eggs and huge insights into Guardians of The Galaxy and the upcoming Captain America Civil War..and specifically the second half of season 2 was genius. Now I am pretty sure that ultimately Disney owns Marvel Studios who also owns ABC who runs the Agent’s of S.H.I.E.L.D that makes sense.
Then you have DC, Warner Brothers who have done very well on the small screen for the most part. Smallville was a success 10 years no tights no flights exploration into the early years of Superman. I seriously love this show more than most. Then we got Arrow which is my favorite show of all time (And my goal of where I want to work) and we got the Flash which is a different flavor than Arrow, but just as good. Gotham came along to Fox and it is so good– it’s as subtle as a place like Gotham can be
The Tim Burton Catwoman and the Gotham Catwoman similarities are just unreal and so cool! All of the villians are very cool and so not part of the “over acting villian club” which many of the Batman villians are a part of.
So last season was GREAT! Mondays Gotham, Tuesdays the Flash (and S.H.I.E.L.D), Wednesdays Arrow! But this season CBS decides to get cocky and actively compete against a DC brand with Super Girl airing on Mondays against Gotham. This shows me, that Warner Brothers, AND DC have no idea of what a cinematic universe looks like or else they wouldn’t be trying to put another DC show down. Just for the sake of competing. CBS is doing all it can to knock it out of the park by lining it up with The Big Bang Theory and For those who haven’t seen the pilot, the creators of Arrow and The Flash who have created Super Girl have done an amazing job with this show as well. It’s really nothing like what they presented at the upfront’s it’s not a RomCom, its brave, it manages to find a world for Super Girl without Superman and it’s a superhero show. So why is CBS asking us to choose between Batman or Super Girl? Because of its competition with Fox? Lets face this fact, CBS wins that battle anyway. Why not air SuperGirl on Thursdays?. It would make for a well-rounded superhero week. I have to assume, just knowing the industry a bit, and how these things work. The pilot was leaked, very thoroughly, because CBS is doing some people wrong on it. Honestly I haven’t met someone who hasn’t seen it already. That’s how leaked it is.
This does not inspire confidence in the approach that DC is taking with starting a marathon of superhero movies starting with Batman Vs Superman and then a Suicide Squad movie quickly afterwards. The fact that Arrow had a Harley Quinn and then they couldn’t use that character because of the Suicide Squad movie confirms that.
I love Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman, I love Henry Cavil as Superman. I honestly don’t know if they know what the hell they are doing, if they have a plan if their heads and hearts are int his or if they are doing this because they just want what Marvel has. When Marvel has done this for a long time, and well. But they aren’t ruling the small screen, picking up loyal followers like DC is, but DC is making a critical mistake by letting its pieces fail and compete. (Constantine?)
The lore behind The Justice League and The Suicide Squad is so much bigger than one movie can set up–and there are characters in the justice league that could really be explored and introduced on the small screen to make their way to the big screen. The idea of a birds of prey movie, sounds fantastic, except for an all female team of superhero’s, when Wonder Woman is having a hard time finding a director?
I wish I could say I’m looking forward to what are going to be non stop comic book movies for the next few years, but I really am more excited to see season 3 of Agent’s of S.H.I.E.L.D, Season 2 of Agent Carter, Season 4 of Arrow, Gotham, Super Girl. I am really looking for to Captain America Civil War because all of the stories have been weaving into that movie– both small screen and big screen.