Just picture it. As far as the eye can see. Death. All the world is gone only you and your nearest cinema are left standing. You walk in because, well let’s be honest you have nothing to do. You head down to the employees only section to find where the films are kept, only to options available: Man of Steel or Captain America/ Winter Soldier. How do you feel? Literally ask yourself, are you excited? Does the idea of the only two movies you have in the whole world to watch are two outplayed superhero flicks. As of right now while I’m writing this there have been 52 superhero movies (no pun intended) since the year 2000. As of me writing this, from the year 2000 until 2020 there will be a total of 78 film adaptations of a DC/Marvel intellectual properties.
Is this a problem? Should we be happy? Should we be furious? Or indifferent?
2005 brought us the world’s first Guitar Hero. Few can say they haven’t dabbled in plastic rock before, fewer still can say they missed it. Up until recently the last title released by either Guitar Hero or Rock Band was out by 2010. After five years both titles decided to attempt a moderately unwelcomed comeback. Though it’s too soon to tell whether it will last, not many have hope. So what does this mean for superheroes? Will they go the way of the dodo or just become another watered down genre like the horror or thriller films? As Nerds and Geeks we love to see our favorite stories cross other mediums and of course the general audience enjoys them as well but, will there come a time where paying for an Imax ticket to see a superhero kick CG ass becomes too superfluous. If we go back “superheroes” weren’t “superheroes” they were “Action Heroes” it’s just a name change but it makes a different.
Back then superheroes were still young and susceptible to change. Superman used to not be able to fly. Batman has killed. And Spiderman had friends. Now we scream at each other over the size of a bat logo or the flamboyance of our jokers. We forget these movies are like the M&ms of the trail mix we call the movie industry. Meant to be enjoyed but to only have few. Don’t get me wrong, I’m the dude in the Batman T-shirt with a cape velcro’ed on, jerking it to set pictures of Suicide Squad but, nevertheless I see a pattern and it’s engulfed one of my passions. I know I may as well be screaming at a wall, but hopefully something will change. I am having almost daily Nerdgasms from all the new movies and news I cross paths with. More Star Wars and Justice League and Avengers and Mad Max let’s add a sprinkle of some Disney Live-action remake maybe a biopic or two and we finish off the year with an assortment of mid to post credit scenes for dessert. It seem like at some point someone would scream for another Big Lebowski or World’s Greatest Dad something with a little depth. It seems like nowadays I find myself enjoying movies the less CGI there is.
Remember the days when you had to wait for the resolution? When the words “BE BACK NEXT WEEK! SAME TIME! SAME PLACE!” or some variation of that, actually filled you with suspense and excitement. Not to sound like a pouty hipster, but we live in a world of total and absolute satisfaction. The Showtime series Californication, an extremely well written show, had a quote “Satisfaction is the death of desire”. A total NO DUH moment but the words ring true. Always getting a solution after every movie or series or getting a movie just by hashtagging or liking. Remember there’s a reason why Christmas comes once a year. When a music artist releases an album most of them take some time off. Music is art. Art is emotional. How you feel is everything. While writing for the Batman Animated Series, Paul Dini wrote many episodes. He is the genius in charge of Harley Quinn, the best Psycho-dependent Villainess in animation or comics. During an episode of the podcast: Fatman on Batman, Dini stated while writing the episode Heart of Ice for the show, he began to cry. After hearing that I watched the episode looking for a deeper story and just like that I saw it. The possibilities. The Art. Where it can go. From that story, I reached an understanding about love. During another episode of Fatman on Batman, The host Kevin Smith also began to cry while recounting his times watching The Dark Knight Rises. That during one of his many viewings, he found that Batman’s imminent death during the final moments of the film was an acceptable one. That even though there would no longer be a batman, kevin smith and myself including both agree, if Batman had to die then let it be while carrying off a nuclear bomb over the ocean away from Gotham, which at the time was a city in absolute ruin. That’s the impact these characters have on us. Where the supposed death of Christian Bale’s Batman has brought a tear to someone’s eye. It’s almost poetic. These moments should be enjoyed not shelled out every year by big wigs looking to make another buck. Of course, the movie industry is still an industry. And the fact that billions of dollars are being made is nothing to laugh at but let’s have a little respect for the characters we love.
In the end, it’s all about choice. Do the cookie-cutter marvel movies entertain the six year old in you? Will DC’s huge showcase of movies make history? Ask yourself what’s more important. The characters we know and love for years or the fact that I can see a semi-decent flick about guys/girls in tights facing ridiculous odds every other week?