Debate: Which is better — Marvel or DC?


Round 1

Side 1: Recently there’s been a lot of hype about Marvel, but is it really all that everyone claims it to be? Not quite. Marvel’s recent popularity seems to be caused by its crazy flood of recent movies, which is going to make them seem more popular because they have more viewers in a given time frame, even if they were to get the same amount, or less, viewers per movie when compared to DC ones. Meanwhile, DC has been going crazy with TV shows for ages, and many of them are pretty popular, while Marvel seems to have only recently gotten into this area. This, of course, does not in itself make DC better, but the fact that they have had so many popular TV shows at all says something about their storytelling and animation. It also helps that DC hasn’t had to worry about copyright issues when creating their TV shows and movies, which is something that has limited Marvel quite a bit. This gives them more freedom of creativity and plot creation, thus making it easier to produce high-quality entertainment.

Side 2: Although DC has made a few great movies, usually involving Batman, they can’t hold a candle compared to the list of hits Marvel has put out. We need to remember the 2002 Sam Raimi Spiderman films were huge contributors to the current superhero movie phenomenon. I worked in a movie theater for a few years, and I asked the owners what their busiest movie was; they told me when the original Spiderman movie came out they had a line out the door and wrapping around the parking lot. Marvel has managed to make something that was once either purely children’s entertainment or the hobby for nerds into a mainstream sensation. As far as TV shows are concerned, DC may have more live action dramas than Marvel, but I’d bet way more people will recognize an animated Spiderman or Hulk than the live action Arrow stars. To put it simply, Marvel just has a way better image than DC. Even their worst movies are better than Batman vs Superman.

Round 2

Side 1: To say that Marvel has the most recognizable characters is a bit simplistic. Yes, maybe more people would recognize Spiderman before they would recognize the Green Arrow, but that same argument could be reversed. More people are likely to know who Superman is than they would know Hawkeye. Plus, it’s a common belief that Superman is the original superhero in terms of defining what a superhero is. If that’s not a point in DC’s favor, I don’t know what is. Also, in terms of villains, whose are the most well known? DC’s villains. The Joker, Harley Quinn, The Riddler, all of these are names that most kids grew up hearing, while, until recently, Marvel’s villains were not quite as infamous. Why would they be so well known if they weren’t great villains? In this area, DC has done much better for far longer than Marvel has. Marvel may be the current fad, but the question of who will remain superior is something that only time will show, and that is something DC has been pretty good at keeping up with.

Side 2: Marvel didn’t just change how modern cinema portrays comic heroes. They revolutionized modern television writing in general. Marvel was a pioneer of crafting connected worlds that impact each other, something DC is trying to catch up to. By writing their films in a way that even the most minor character in some sequel can come back in an Avengers title, Marvel is able to increase audience engagement, even if it’s in the third Thor movie. What’s more important, is that their movies generally star characters that all ages can enjoy. Recently DC has tried to make their movies way too dark. I’m sorry, but you can’t have your main character wear a red spandex and cape then try and have a serious plotline. Not to mention the fact that Marvel movies almost always have way better special effects. I think it speaks for itself that their biggest villain is a large, wrinkly chinned, purple giant with a magic glove, and I still totally believed he was actually walking around on set.

Side 1 argued by Rebecca Barkdoll and Side 2 argued by David Disney