Marvel’s heroes superior

'Observer' Business Manager Daniel Miyares argues for the superiority of Marvel over DC Comics.

By Daniel Miyares, Business Manager

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The green monstrosity advances in a furious rage, muscles bulging and eyes flaring. The familiar, vibrant red-and blue cape ripples in flight as a chiseled figure soars to meet him.

Just before the two forces of nature converge, time stops, and this daydream of countless comic fans ends.

A battle royale between Marvel’s Incredible Hulk and DC Comic’s Superman would be highly competitive and utterly fantastic. The battle for paying moviegoers, gamers and readers between the very real companies the two represent, DC Comics and Marvel, however, is not nearly as competitive.

Ask any student walking these halls whether he or she would rather watch a Marvel or a DC production, and most wouldn’t recognize DC at all.  Yes, Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy was a cinematic achievement worthy of its accolades and fangirl army. Now, ask them whether they’d like to watch Fantastic Four 2, Green Lantern or Catwoman, and their eyes will gloss over.

Marvel acts as a sort of common denominator for going out to the movies, according to senior Savannah Chapa. Almost anyone can enjoy a fun superhero movie, critic reviews and box office receipts aside.

The same cannot be said for DC. According to AP Psychology teacher Jared Pulliam, DC products tended to be darker, both in early comics and in recent movies. As a kid, he found the melancholy Batman comics to be off-putting.

Marvel, in all of its corporate glory, is more fun. Case in point, Guardians of the Galaxy casts a wise-cracking raccoon and a talking tree as protagonists, and it works. It’s a distinctively odd-ball concept, but I have yet to meet someone who doesn’t find it wholly entertaining.

Junior Nancy McNelly, one of Marvel’s many fans, proves this point. According to McNelly, their movies and comics, especially Guardians in both forms, tend to be the perfect combination of action and comedy.

Rocket Raccoon is characteristic of Marvel’s master plan, a vibrant character in an even more vibrant universe. The defining characteristic of a good superhero film is the enjoyment that comes from a suspension of disbelief. Marvel champions its excessiveness and weirdness, knowing that entertainment (and the money made by the entertainment, of course) is its primary objective.

According to Pulliam, DC has its own virtues, as it offers more refined content such as graphic novels Watchmen and V for Vendetta, appealing to a more mature and older audience.

Meanwhile, Marvel entertains a wider and largely younger audience. Its writers and directors know this, and fortunately do not try to fix what is not broken. While DC struggles to come off as serious and thought-provoking, two things traditional comics were never truly intended to be — Marvel gives us what we truly want: superheroes delighting us with their over-the-top, heroic acts.

In addition, Marvel-owned characters, such as Wolverine, have much more depth than those of DC, according to Pulliam. This gap is most apparent in Superhero films and comics — DC’s Man of Steel is practically perfect and unbeatable, making him blasé and boring.

Marvel’s iconic Wolverine, on the other hand, suffers from PTSD and memory loss. While he is immortal, unbelievable by nature, the character’s gritty persona makes him relatable and even believable, which is no small feat for a man with metal claw implants.

Furthermore, Marvel’s characters are simply more diverse. According to Chapa, while Batman and Superman are great, they encompass all that DC has to offer for moviegoer and comic nerd alike. Marvel has every hero and villain from a spider-like teen to a Nordic god to a talking raccoon, each of which entertains in their own unique way.

In truth, we as a culture look to comics and now superhero movies to escape from a mundane reality. To watch Hulk perform his signature smash or to watch Thor wield his iconic hammer is to be a kid again, invincible and free. The feeling isn’t the same when Batman kills in cold blood, or Superman, Mr. Perfect, wins again.

So, who would win the battle between the Avengers and the Justice League? The world may never know. But as of now, the battle for our eyeballs and our hearts has already been won by a hulking green monster, an American poster in tights and a wise-cracking raccoon. Avengers assemble, and don’t let us down.