Saturday, March 21, 2015

Bracket Tournament of Comic Book Movies

The folks at AMC Movie News are currently running a tournament bracket to determine, by popular vote, the best animated movie of all time (my final four would be Sleeping Beauty, Up, The Incredibles, and The Emperor's New Groove). This contest reminded me that last year they ran a bracket to determine the best superhero movie. The final four ended up being The Dark Knight, Man of Steel, The Avengers, and Iron Man, with The Dark Knight defeating The Avengers to take the crown.

I was curious about the breakdown of DC-based movies versus Marvel Studios movies throughout the bracket. Here's what I found.
  • AMC Movie News seeded the brackets and they included 9 DC movies in the set of 32, 8 from Marvel Studios, 4 X-Men, 3 Spider-man, and 8 miscellaneous (some of which featured Marvel characters, like Blade, but were not produced by Marvel Studios, and none of which moved on to round two). So to start things off, it's DC 9, Marvel 8.
  • Then the fans took over. In the first round, 6 DC movies moved on, 5 from Marvel Studios, 3 from the X-Men universe, and 2 featuring Spider-man. So DC maintains its lead, 6 to 5.
  • The elite eight featured 4 DC movies to 3 from Marvel, plus X2. So it's still 4 to 3, advantage DC.
  • Then, as mentioned above, we had The Dark Knight versus Man of Steel (DC v. DC) and The Avengers versus Iron Man (Marvel v. Marvel) in the final four. This guaranteed a DC v. Marvel showdown in the final, where The Dark Knight trounced The Avengers, getting nearly 3 times the votes from the AMC Movie News fans. So DC comes out on top, hands down. [See the brackets here]
The fact that DC maintained the edge over Marvel throughout every round of this popularly-voted tournament just reminds me of the fact that, although Marvel has had a solid run of hits in theaters recently, one has to keep in mind that DC had a very large head start, leading off with the original Superman series and the Batman series before Marvel got started. And then even if you restrict your attention to "what have you done for me lately," DC has Nolan's Dark Knight trilogy actually surpassing Marvel Studios according to the AMC results, plus there's Man of Steel right there in the final four.

I do admit that, if you expand out to other Marvel characters, that adds quite a few feathers in Marvel's cap, and I also admit that DC has more than their share of stinkers to go along with their strong showing in the AMC tourney, but I don't think that it should be a foregone conclusion that Marvel Studios is wiping the floor with DC in the film department. If Marvel were the unchallenged king, then I think we should have seen Marvel winning at least one round of the comic book movie tournament!

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