Now that we've fully entered 2015 we are all about to be subjected to an ever increasing roster of TV comic book shows. With the number of Marvel & DC shows airing this year well into double figures(that's almost double figures each btw), is 2015 going to be remembered as the great year of the TV comic book world(s) or will the market become so flooded and saturated with huge number of show that it might be the beginning of the end for the comic book TV world?
Now one thing we can all agree on is that movies are great, especially superhero movies, finally getting to see our favourite comic book characters up on the big screen is every comic book fans' dream. Movie studios spend 10's of millions of dollars on making our favourite heroes & villains come alive in 2 hour spectacles of amazing entertainment and beautiful eye candy that, for the most part, leave you feeling happy and satisfied, however after you leave the movie theatre and start to think about the film or talk about it with your friends the thought that will inevitably cross your mind and in turn slightly dampen your enjoyment of the after-film experience will occur.
This is always going to be a problem facing movies, you can tell your story but no matter how amazing or good looking it is it will only last for 2-2.5 hours maximum and you will then be facing the long, agonizing wait, of generally between 2 to 3 years, to see the next instalment of your favourite film. This need for more comic book content is however quite easily filled by the ever growing number of TV comic book based series' that are starting to air across so many different networks. With the wide array of varying shows that are coming out there will be at least one that you will enjoy and want to follow. This means that you will get at a minimum 10 weeks of entertainment (over 6 and a half hours minimum)with, assuming the shows renewal, less than a year to wait to see its story continued, unlike the several years wait for a film. In 2015 we will see the following shows on air on TV, and in the case of the 4 new Marvel shows, Netflix:
- The Flash
- In development: Static Shock, Lucifer, Global Frequency, DMZ
- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D
- Agent Carter
- AKA Jessica Jones
- Luke Cage
- Iron Fist
- The Defenders
Combined that is some 16 comic book shows (20 including the one in development) that are going to be shown this year. Some of you will probably notice the walking dead is left out, which is based on the Image comic of the same name, but that show has grown to be far more than just a TV comic book show by this point.
All of these shows coming to air is surely great news for comic book fans out there as they now have an almost endless supply of shows to occupy their free time and crucially allow you to get that live action comic fix and fill the massive void between movies. However have things happened too fast and are just simply too many shows coming all at once and will it be too much comic book world at one time and the "bubble" might pop?
Part of the reason we have jumped from 1 comic book TV show in 2012 (Arrow) to an amazing 16. just 3 years later, is that while the superhero "bubble" is incredibly strongly right now, and is essentially a license to print money for companies, no one actually knows how long its going to last, so while it is still going strong everyone is throwing in their offering to take a piece of that huge superhero money pie but is this a good thing?
Having so many shows all revolving around the same theme means every show will have to try to make their show unique to stand out amongst the crowd, which will inevitably cause changes to the core of the source material, not a problem for the casual viewer but to a true fan could completely ruin their favourite characters. Another problem for the TV comic world is that it is starting to be adapted by networks who have never delved into the sci-fi/fantasy genre that comic books cover, which is going to lead shows like Gotham on Fox and Supergirl on CBS down strange paths that may not particularly fit with the source material. The main problem however with having this sheer volume of comic book shows is there just may not be enough of an audience to make all of them work. By splitting an audience 16 ways on just comic book shows is going to mean that some shows just simply won't get the viewing figures they may in fact deserve, while others that aren't as good but are perhaps on a bigger network may succeed in gaining that large audience.
The negative aspect of having so many shows are clear but that being said there are a few advantages also to the sheer volume of shows. It will hopefully cause every show to pick up their game, trying as hard as humanly possible to beat one another in terms of story, action and drama. Also with the introduction of TV universes it allows for crossovers between shows and in Marvels case between TV and film, as all their shows exist in the cinematic universe. With shows being able to share audiences and help each other grow this may sustain smaller shows and get bigger shows even more of a wide audience. Another great thing is if some shows don't make it on their own but have established a popular character then they could then move permanently over to a more still running show in the same universe. Whether the problems or potential advantages win out we will have to to wait and see.
So is 2015 going to be the greatest year for TV comic book shows or is there simply too much comic book TV content and it may spoil everything but having too much too fast? Whatever the case hopefully you enjoy all the comic book content available this year.
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