Superheroes deserve some logic too…

There’s a lot of talk about the glut of superhero movies lately, and debate about whether fans are burned out. I don’t think fans are burned out…I think Hollywood screws things up half the time, and fans know good ideas from bad ones.

Comic book fans are very VERY much into the mythology and continuity of their favorite characters. I’m convinced one reason the first Batman series fell apart so quickly was the continual rotation of actors playing the lead character…and the weak choices of who those actors were. Fast forward to the current Batman series, easily the best comic book movies ever, and the inspired choice of Christian Bale and the gritty edge to the films bring us compelling films that happen to be comic book adaptations, not campy comic book travesties like the final couple of Batman films from the 1990s.

The critically panned Daredevil wasn’t bad. Maybe another actor could have done more with it, but Ben Affleck wasn’t bad either. Likewise, Superman Returns wasn’t bad, and Brandon Routh was, well, at least somewhat acceptable as Superman, despite being a little young for the role given the history the movie tried to adhere to.

Captain America

The Human Torch

So fast forward to today. Hollywood is making mistakes and doesn’t seem to learn from past lessons.

Captain America can’t be the same guy as Johnny Storm, aka The Human Torch.  Chris Evans played Johnny Storm of the Fantastic Four in TWO movies. Then a couple years later he all the sudden is Captain America? And in between that he starred in yet another comic book adaptation, The Losers. The fact that Captain America and the Fantastic Four are both Marvel products makes it all the worse.  With as much attention to detail and long-term development as Marvel has put into the hugely ambitious buildup of The Avengers, how do you borrow a member of the Fantastic Four and ignore that series?


Green Lantern

Similarly, Green Lantern can’t be the same guy as Deadpool, a villain from X-Men Origins: Wolverine. A stone cold killing machine becomes a light-hearted flying neon green glowstick in Green Lantern? And how do you cast Ryan Reynolds to play Deadpool to begin with? He’s Mr. Likeable. And why would you use a glowing green all-CGI costume for Green Lantern? And no costume at all for Deadpool?? The fact that X-Men is a Marvel title and Green Lantern is a DC line only slightly lessens the ridiculous nature of recycling lead actors in comic movie after comic movie.

And finally, you can’t keep re-booting The Hulk. In the Avengers, we’ll have our third actor portraying The Hulk in three films. Ridiculous. And we’re already re-booting Spiderman after the third Tobey Maguire film just a few years ago? Why?

Building live action storylines and characters across a multi-movie arc like the progression toward The Avengers is a fantastic opportunity. Conversely, trying to create a Justice League film with no lead up connections to the Batman and Superman films (and with new actors) seems pretty odd.

Keeping actors in the same roles over multiple films is not easy.  But there are plenty of actors out there. The relatively unknown Chris Hemsworth starring as Thor (yet another Avenger to be) is one example. The powers that be need to be sure not to cast Chris Evans in any more comic book roles. Let’s allow audiences to become as committed to these characters as comic book fans are. That can only happen with consistency, logic, and respect for fans, in addition to compelling storylines and fun special effects.


4 thoughts on “Superheroes deserve some logic too…

  1. Get your comic book geek on, brother! I remarked over and over about the ludicrous nature of casting Chris Evans for Captain America, despite that I really, really did enjoy the film. It just makes for awkwardness and challenges the old “suspension of disbelief”. Considering the universe of male actors capable of playing the role, it’s incredibly arrogant of Disney (through its ownership of Marvel) to have gone ahead with whatever misguided thought said, “yeah, casting the guy who plays Human Torch from Fantastic Four as our new Captain America is a good idea.”

    Of course, I should just shut up and pay my $13 to watch it all in 3-D. Hollywood hates it when one of its viewing audience starts thinking for themselves…

  2. I must admit that I have become dissalusioned by the Comic Book / cum movie adaptations long ago. The unrealistic attempts with the Incredible Hulk further dimminished my enthusiasm after the horrid run of Batman movies.
    On that topic, I thought the Original two films starring Micheal Keaton were Comic Book perfection from a photographic perspective. But as you alluded too…the franchise turned sour with the endless catwalk of boorish actors filling the black suit….Christian Bale notwithstanding.
    Will I see the current run of DC and Marvel adaptations? Perhaps…Not on the Big Screen however….I have not gained the desire because I dont see these as new stories that really needed to be told. And RedBox rents for a $1 a night….

    • I enjoyed Captain America – despite the fact that he was played by The Human Torch 😉 – and the Christopher Nolan Batman films are truly magnificent…but there’s just been way too much of a rush to put out every character possible in a movie lately, not realizing it’s taken 80 years for these characters to develop in print. We need them to slowly come to the screen, not a new one every month!

  3. Pingback: Superman, meet Green Arrow | Above The Field

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