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January 23, 2011

Alright, despite the inital tempation to indulge in a nerd argument that rarely comes up around the watercooler, I wasn’t exactly planning on doing this because the temptation to be lazy is a hard one to ignore. But thanks to the prompting of Kate from The Stories That Really Mattered to take part and Kai over at The List for siding with his namesake, I’m throwing down the gauntlet and fighting the good fight in the argument of a lifetime:

Are you a Marvel, or are you a DC?

I don’t know about you gringoes, but I’m picking up the DC flag and flying it like a bastard. You want reasons? Oh, I got ’em, baby. I got ’em in spades! SHAZAM!

5. Kingdom Come
First thing’s first: DC’s just got a better roster. It’s a smaller roster, but it’s quality over quantity that matters. I’ll get to Bats in a minute, but we’ve got Robin (and Nightwing), The Joker, Supes, Bizarro, The Flash (my personal favorite), Wonder Woman, The Green Lantern, Captain Marvel, The Green Arrow and about 650 more total badasses who make Tony Stark look like the alcoholic Tin Man he is. Anyway, here they all are in one place, drawn to astoundingly convincing life by Alex Ross in the best Ultimate Suphero Showdown on the block. As someone who usually walks right past the superhero graphic novel shelf, I couldn’t believe how blown away by this and it’s a total page-turner from start to finish. Talkin’ ’bout fan service at its best.

4. Preacher
Alright, now this one along with my top two slots were published under the Vertigo label, but that’s a direct offshoot of DC and it totally freakin’ counts. Jesus, the fact that DC has a badass label like Vertigo under its belt is more than enough to win this fight, but I digress. Preacher is about an alcoholic priest from Texas who gets possessed by the bastard child of an angel and a demon is then able to speak the Word of God (which makes anyone do whatever he says). So God finds out about this, He sends His #1 heavenly hitman to take the priest out pronto before the priests and his traveling buddies (an old fling and an Irish vampire) find Him first. It’s offensive, it’s sacriligious, it’s brutally violent and it’s definitely not for everyone, but I had a blast with it and it’s one of the more memorable series I’ve gotten through in recent years. I think someone out there is trying to make this into a movie, I have no idea how they’re gonna pull it off, but I’m seeing it if they do. Bonus points for the simple fact that The Saint of Killers could single-handedly take out Marvel’s whole crew at once.

3. Batman: Year One
Took me way too long to discover it, but this is the best Batman graphic novel of all-time. Better than The Dark Knight Returns, better than The Dark Knight Rises Again, better than Hush, better than all of ’em and those are all winners. Seriously, this is unbelievable stuff, it’s the best treatment that Master Bruce ever got and if Batman Begins had given the same kind of spotlight to Commissioner Gordon that this did, that bad boy would have been a 10.

2. Watchmen
No explanation needed.

1. Y: The Last Man
Folks, this series did the impossible, this is the series that bested Watchmen. I borrowed every issue from a friend in college, read through it faster than Johnny-Five with a lightning rod up his ass, and I really wish I had the shelf space and funds to buy them all for myself because I would do it in a heartbeat. Look, I don’t know what else to say other than Y: The Last man is one of the best things I’ve ever read, graphic novels or otherwise, there’s not a thing in Marvel’s repertoire that even comes close to matching it, and there’s no way in hell that you’ll feel otherwise after taking the plunge. Read this immediately, read any of these choice five immediately, and believe you me, you’ll be converted.

So I realize that this was more of a DC’s Greatest Hits list than anything else, but I’ll take one graphic novel over a thousand comic books any day and DC’s where it’s at in that regard. Still not accounting for Alan Moore’s Swamp Thing run, V for Vendetta and Neil Gaiman’s Sandman series which I still need to get through, but I think this coffin’s already got enough nails in it as is.

Then again, this is a movie blog, so that’s a whole ‘nother can of worms we gotta run through right quick:

Marvel – The Good
1. Blade
2. X-Men
3. Blade II
4. Spider-Man
5. X2
6. Spider-Man 2
7. Iron Man
8. The Incredible Hulk

Marvel – The Heinous
1. Red Sonja
2. Howard the Duck
3. The Punisher (the one with Dolph Lundgren)
4. The Fantastic Four
5. Daredevil
6. Hulk
7. The Punisher (the one with Homeless Dad)
8. Blade: Trinity
9. Elektra
10. X-Men: The Last Stand
11. Ghost Rider
12. Spider-Man 3
13: Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer
14. Punisher: War Zone
15. X-Men Origins: Wolverine
16. Iron Man 2


DC – The Bitchin’
1. Batman (the ’66 version where the seal/dolphin sacrifices itself to save Adam West)
2. Superman
3. Superman II
4. Batman (the Tim Burton version)
5. Batman Returns
6. Batman Begins
7. The Dark Knight
8. Watchmen

DC – The Criminal
1. Superman III (the one with Richard Pryor)
2. Supergirl
3. Superman IV: The Quest for Peace
4. The Return of Swamp Thing (the one with Heather Locklear)
5. Batman Forever
6. Steel
7. Batman & Robin
8. Catwoman
9. Superman Returns (I liked it, but I’ll put it up anyway, ya’ vultures)
10. Jonah Hex


Argue those numbers all you want, but here’s my thinking: Marvel may have a bigger roster, but it ultimately sets them up for failure more than anything else. Yeah, DC’s got its fair share of stinkers, but we will never let you forget about Howard the Duck. And you’ve still got another Ghost Rider movie on the way! Fuckin’ harsh, man.

Marvels, don’t get me wrong, I love ya’. You’re my boys and you’ve put out some damn fine stuff in your time, but alas, the proof is in the pudding.

I am such a freakin’ DC.

32 Comments leave one →
  1. January 23, 2011 1:26 am

    If asked which one will win a fight, I will always say DC, and here is my argument. The strongest of the Marvel characters is probably Thor. DC has Dr. Manhattan. All he has to do is blink, and POW!!! Every Marvel character is reduced to instant gazpacho! Powerful stuff.

    As for which one I prefer, I’m still on the fence. Batman is my favorite hero, but Marvel has provided better entertainment over the years. I don’t know. I’ll wait until Nolan leaves the brand than I’ll formulate an opinion…

    • January 24, 2011 11:14 am

      Geez, I always of how Superman alone pretty much trumps Marvel’s entire roster, but I totally forgot about Dr. Manhattan, that’s not even fair.

      And I hear ya’, it’s a tough call. But Nolan having DC’s back is a definite step up.

  2. January 23, 2011 6:55 am

    I’m glad you finally caved and decided to write me a post. I knew you’d have some awesome ideas. Obviously, you;re wrong, because you’re a DC, but it was a fun read nonetheless 😉

    I was really hoping I could get away with no one mentioning Howard the Duck or Watchmen, so thanks for that one. We’re probably having different arguments. I’m nowhere near enough of a comic book geek to argue the pros and cons of the graphic novels like you. My knowledge is more assimilated from movies and the internet, which is probably why I come out as a Marvel, even you have to admit that overall the Marvel movies are better. (PS. half of your heinous list I’m arguing with, but I wont start that because I think it’s an argument neither of us can ever win)

    Thanks for joining the debate. As always, a great post.

    • January 24, 2011 11:17 am

      Haha. It was a great idea on your part and I had a total blast writing it even if I’m totally in the right!

      And, yeah, I’m thinking that my arguments are gonna be different from most folks, but those are five kickass points if I do say so myself. And as for Marvel making better movies than DC, I’m afraid we’re gonna have to once again agree to disagree. But Spider-Man 2 and the first two X-Men movies are freakin’ great. Will give you that even if they both ultimately got butchered.

      • January 25, 2011 11:15 am

        We’re definitely going to have to agree to disagree, but you are a great advocate for teh wrong opinion 😛

      • January 25, 2011 11:18 am

        hahahaha. right back at ya’.

  3. January 23, 2011 12:49 pm

    DC all the way for sure.

  4. January 23, 2011 12:58 pm

    Yea in movies, DC is kicking Marvel’s ass but if you look at the overall universe, DC only has Batman and Superman really.

    • January 24, 2011 11:19 am

      Batman, Superman, and Dr. Manhattan. I would love to see the entire Marvel universe take down those three guys at once.

  5. January 23, 2011 1:07 pm

    great argument Aiden. love that Joker pic. had read Ledger skateboarded on set, hadnt seen the photographic evidence till now. i too liked Superman Returns! not perfect but Routh was a great Clark Kent. unfortunately – this may seem strange – to me there was too much of Superman and not enough Kent in that movie.
    Batman Year One i also just picked up about a month ago – its terrific. and i have no interest in comics at all really.

    • January 24, 2011 11:20 am

      That Joker pic might be the most badass picture on the planet. And thanks for sticking up for Superman Returns, still not sure why so many people rag on that. Need to revisit it before I can chime in on the lack of Clark though.

      And way to pick up Year One, it really is fucking incredible.

  6. January 23, 2011 7:27 pm

    I’m w/ you, Aiden. Superman & Batman alone counts for at least half a dozen of what Marvel has. I like a lot of Marvel movies, but I’ll always have a soft spot for those two DC heroes.

    • January 24, 2011 11:21 am

      Darn tootin’, Ruth. Marvel’s got some winning characters, but they dont have Supes and Bats, and they will always be sore about not having Supes and Bats.

  7. Max permalink
    January 23, 2011 10:50 pm

    I give you so many props for including Preacher in your reasons, Aiden.


    • January 24, 2011 11:22 am

      Dude, way to be a fan of Preacher. What a crazy freakin’ series that was, but what a total blast, too.

  8. January 24, 2011 2:53 am

    Ruth/Ross/Castor where are your posts?! 😛

    • January 24, 2011 12:19 pm

      Sorry it fell off my radar, Katie… but I might do that sometime in Feb. Thanks, you just gave me an idea for a post 😀

  9. Moose permalink
    January 24, 2011 9:37 am

    Damn it Aiden, I saw the lead paragraph and the headline and I was about to come in here and explain why you are a fool(A FOOL!). But then you had to throw that whole Vertigo is DC bombshell on me(I really had no idea) and now that changes everything.

    I would have 101 time out of 100 picked Marvel over DC, but now that I know that the greatest thing I have ever read, Y: The Last Man, is under the DC umbrella, plus you throw in the obvious fact that The Flash is the best of any universe, and it’s starting to sway me. Now it’s closer to 51 times out of 100 Marvel, and 50 time out of 100 DC.

    I just hope they don’t screw up the inevitable Last Man project, whatever it might be.

    PS – The entire X-Men universe is why I still pick Marvel. It’s legit.

    • January 24, 2011 11:26 am

      Hahahaha. As the guy who introduced me to Y, I don’t know how you can possibly side with Marvel. And way to throw in some love for The Flash. He’s my #1 too, only guy who can beat Supes in a race across the globe.

      Really hope they don’t screw up Y either. Would love to have them make an HBO mini-series out of it instead of cramming it all into a couple movies, but we’ll have to wait and see. As long as they don’t cast Shia LaBeouf, I’ll be a happy man.

  10. Ryan permalink
    January 24, 2011 10:20 am

    I love both Marvel and DC, but the real reason I think DC is better are the Villains. DC’s bad guys are just much better. Batman’s rogue’s gallery alone is amazing, and stands against most of Marvels. While DC has it’s stinkers ( , I’ll still take DC over Marvel any day

    • January 24, 2011 11:28 am

      Hahaha. The world trembles before Captain Boomerang. And you’re totally right, the DC villains are so much better. With the exception of Magneto and Venom (who got totally shafted by Topher Grace), the Marvel villains totally blow. Great point, dude.

  11. January 24, 2011 10:23 am

    As Katie said, this is indeed a fun read. even though I am an idiot on this matter…I didn’t even know which one bleongs to DC which one belongs to Marvel. Not that I want to start reading any superheroes comic…but your post gives me an idea.

    • January 24, 2011 11:29 am

      Hahaha. I recommend reading any of those five graphic novels. You will not be disappointed.

  12. January 26, 2011 6:31 am

    Not sure if this will work, but hopefully this should be a link to my poll.

    Even if you’re not writing a post of your own it’s be great if you’d vote so we can see who wins!

  13. HermioneO permalink
    January 27, 2011 3:11 pm

    DC is the winner. Artemis rocks.


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