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  1. #16
    Extraordinary Member Lightning Rider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vordan View Post
    Dude every Marvel movie is an action-comedy with lighthearted heroes who don’t make serious mistakes. The idea that general audiences don’t respond to lighter characters is nonsense.
    I didn't say general audiences don't respond to lighter characters. (And in fact, reducing some of those characters to comedic quip-machines is cynical in its own way). But I would argue Batman is still a tier above any Marvel character in iconic status, merchandising, media presence, and global popularity. And within his own stories, he's treated more seriously.

  2. #17
    Ultimate Member Vordan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lightning Rider View Post
    I didn't say general audiences don't respond to lighter characters. (And in fact, reducing some of those characters to comedic quip-machines is cynical in its own way). But I would argue Batman is still a tier above any Marvel character in iconic status, merchandising, media presence, and global popularity. And within his own stories, he's treated more seriously.
    Fair enough, but they tried making the rest of DC like Batman and it failed hard. So I don’t think it’s merely the darkness and grit that are the key to success.
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  3. #18
    Extraordinary Member marhawkman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vordan View Post
    Painful as it is to admit, yeah these are true. With #4 it’s because by and large we all agree on what Batman should be, basically somewhere in the mold of what Miller established. With Superman however there’s no general consensus, not even among the hardcore on what he should be. I would say that Morrison’s Action Comics and Tomasi’s Superman Rebirth runs are two runs that seem to have had a wider impact on the character however. YMMV on the quality but there are people who dislike Morrison and Snyder’s Batman runs so you’ll never get 100% adoration.

    Saddest part is that there have been three times in recent memory where DC could have potentially had other franchises that equaled Batman in success: GL, Flash, and WW. Each time DC sabotaged itself through either incompetence or malice. GL died because of the movie flop and because they didn’t know where to go post Johns. Flash was hamstrung by Didio constantly screwing over Manapul, despite the major success of the TV series. With WW they didn’t even try, dumped a mid writer like Robinson on the book to tie up Johns Darkseid War plot threads rather than attempt to build on the success of the first movie.
    Or just not trying. Volume matters, and Batman's is HUGE!!! There's so many Batman games you can choose a genre of game to play.

  4. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vordan View Post
    Dude every Marvel movie is an action-comedy with lighthearted heroes who don’t make serious mistakes. The idea that general audiences don’t respond to lighter characters is nonsense.
    I think Batman being one of the few mainstream superheroes who is relatively dark helps his popularity. All the other big name heroes are lighter and more traditionally heroic. Spider-Man, Superman, Iron Man, Cap, Wonder Woman, Etc wear bright costumes, smile a lot and happily interact with regular citizens in-universe. The fact that Batman wears all black and keeps to the shadows may make him seem more unique to the casual viewer.

    I think that plus the the negative reception to Batman & Robin coupled with the huge success of DKR, Batman 89, TAS, TDK trilogy and the Arkham games is why DC will be hesitant to make lighthearted Batman media. I know some might not like that but I think to the casual audience dark stories are where Batman works best. His niche that allows him to standout from the crowd of the lighter superheroes.

    I do wonder how his popularity would've fared over the years if he was still portrayed like he was in the Silver Age. The Adam West show was a phenomenon but it was a fad and the show got cancelled after 2 years. Dark Batman has been going strong since the mid 80s so I sometimes wonder how popular he'd be if instead of Miller's DKR and Batman 89 we got tonal opposites.

  5. #20
    Post Editing OCD Confuzzled's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mathew101281 View Post
    Prior to that Superman was the most popular character, and Batman was seen as kind of corny by the population at large( a result of the 60ís show).
    I kind of feel this view is revisionist or skewed by a modern opinion of the show. I mean, I wasn't around in the 60's but all the people from the time claim in interviews that the show was considered to be the coolest thing in pop-culture and created it's own "Bat-mania". It also established the majority of his most popular Rogue's Gallery members as household names pretty early on, something that NO other franchise has managed even till now.

  6. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by Confuzzled View Post
    I kind of feel this view is revisionist or skewed by a modern opinion of the show. I mean, I wasn't around in the 60's but all the people from the time claim in interviews that the show was considered to be the coolest thing in pop-culture and created it's own "Bat-mania". It also established the majority of his most popular Rogue's Gallery members as household names pretty early on, something that NO other franchise has managed even till now.
    There is an argument that some has made the Adam West show actually saved the Batman comics from being canceled back at that time (now I don't know if that is true or not) but without the Adam West show there would be no Alfred (he was dead in the comics at the time), no Barbra Gordan Batgirl and later Oracle, cementing the popularity of many of the rouges like Riddler, The Penguin, and Catwoman and making them equal to the Joker, and there would be no Mr. Freeze since he was created for that show.

  7. #22
    DC Comics Forum Mod The Darknight Detective's Avatar
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    The sad thing is, before Tim Burton and the Timmverse, Batman was kind of a joke with mainstream audiences (Aquaman wasn't even close, despite what you hear today). Not with Bronze Age comic book fans like myself, but even the larger number of readers then compared to today still wasn't enough to erase the Batman '66 stench with the average person. The Dark Knight Returns was very popular, but how many people actually knew about it in the '80s? The Batman film, though, everybody knew about. That changed his perception overnight and made him the most popular superhero up to today.
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  8. #23
    DC Comics Forum Mod The Darknight Detective's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyberstrike View Post
    There is an argument that some has made the Adam West show actually saved the Batman comics from being canceled back at that time (now I don't know if that is true or not)
    Batman unquestionably sold more DC comics than anyone except the Superman family of titles and was always north of the average comic sold. If he were really in danger of being cancelled, DC would have been cancelled, too.
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  9. #24
    DC Comics Forum Mod The Darknight Detective's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Confuzzled View Post
    I kind of feel this view is revisionist or skewed by a modern opinion of the show. I mean, I wasn't around in the 60's but all the people from the time claim in interviews that the show was considered to be the coolest thing in pop-culture and created it's own "Bat-mania". It also established the majority of his most popular Rogue's Gallery members as household names pretty early on, something that NO other franchise has managed even till now.
    It was very popular its first season and the Bat-mania was indeed real, but it was also nominated for best comedy that same season (and Season 1 was the least funny of the three). Now as a preschooler watching reruns of it starting in '69, it was great. My father, OTOH, hated it, because he knew it was ridiculing a character he had loved since the '40s. I came to the same conclusion once I started reading Batman comics (by then, it was constantly lambasted by fans in the letter columns), but I began to enjoy it again years later on its own merits.
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  10. #25
    DC Comics Forum Mod The Darknight Detective's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lightning Rider View Post
    I didn't say general audiences don't respond to lighter characters. (And in fact, reducing some of those characters to comedic quip-machines is cynical in its own way). But I would argue Batman is still a tier above any Marvel character in iconic status, merchandising, media presence, and global popularity. And within his own stories, he's treated more seriously.
    Well, Spidey would be his only completion. I'm not sure about merchandising, but Bats would be the equal and then some in regard to the rest. In real dollars, he's #1 at the box office, too.
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  11. #26
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    I'd argue that if it had not been for the BATMAN T.V. show and Bat-Mania in 1966, there would not have been the Burton BATMAN in 1989 and the return of Bat-Mania. The first made the second possible. Even though there was a backlash against Bat-Mania in 1968 that stunk up the Dynamic Duo (Robin laid an egg), the generation that grew up on that earlier incarnation would then take their kids to see the new movie. It's that perfect synergy that gave 1989 Bat-Mania an appeal that spanned generations.

    Much as the dark tone of the Dark Knight might appeal to serious minded adults--what about the kids? Have you never been in a store where, as soon as a little kid sees a Batman product, their eyes light up and they are just bursting with excitement? How do you explain that?

    I grant that kids are attracted to nihilistic things--they like to flirt with disaster--but that doesn't fully explain the attraction of Batman. For me, in 1966, it wasn't just that he was a bat-man, it was that his house was over a cave and in the cave are lots of cool gadgets. He doesn't have any parent to tell him what to do and he's got lots of money, so he can buy as many toys as he wants. He can stay up late after bedtime and explore the night world. Batman is wish fulfillment for a little kid. We don't want seriously to lose our parents--but we can safely imagine that happening and how we would survive and all the things we would do when given that freedom--through the fantasy of being Batman. And you can dress up in a mask and cape and pretend that you are a great hero.

    Mind you, a lot of the same things are in Superman. I think kids would love to be Superman, too. The publisher just has lost the ability to key into that fantasy for kids.
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  12. #27
    Extraordinary Member marhawkman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Kelly View Post
    Mind you, a lot of the same things are in Superman. I think kids would love to be Superman, too. The publisher just has lost the ability to key into that fantasy for kids.
    Oh yeah, as a child, what REALLY got me interested in Superman was some softcover book that had a few excerpts of the extra weird adventures he had. Not the super-fights, but the fantastical adventures.

  13. #28
    Astonishing Member The Kid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lightning Rider View Post
    I didn't say general audiences don't respond to lighter characters. (And in fact, reducing some of those characters to comedic quip-machines is cynical in its own way). But I would argue Batman is still a tier above any Marvel character in iconic status, merchandising, media presence, and global popularity. And within his own stories, he's treated more seriously.
    I would agree with the last part with the exception of Spider-Man. IMO Spidey is the most popular superhero character on the planet. Not only is he a merchandising monster thatís ahead of everyone, his live action movies have a really high average box office gross, and now he also has by far the best selling superhero video game despite the Insomniac game only being on PlayStation while Arkham City was multi platform

    But it really comes down to hits in outside media. Spider-Man being really popular for Marvel hasnít stopped their other characters from being huge as well. And it comes down to other Marvel characters successfully having been used well in outside media. Comics are basically irrelevant now and make no difference. Sure Batman sells 100k copies or whatever but thatís less people than who watched Shang-Chi on opening day. Itís all about outside media now and thatís where DC has been failing with their other characters. Even the hits like Aquaman and Wonder Woman, it feels like they could never take advantage of that success despite both of them having bigger movies than a Batman/Superman film
    Last edited by The Kid; 12-04-2021 at 10:44 AM.

  14. #29
    Ultimate Member Vordan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Kelly View Post
    Mind you, a lot of the same things are in Superman. I think kids would love to be Superman, too. The publisher just has lost the ability to key into that fantasy for kids.
    Mainly because when you look at the last two decades of Superman product, you realize DC hasn’t put out a Superman product for kids since Legion of Superheroes. Everything else, Smallville, the DCAMU, the DCEU, it’s all been for teens and older. Part of why I’m so happy to see a new Superman cartoon coming is that it will hopefully convert kids into Superman fans.

    Real shame they aren’t doing more cartoons for the other Leaguers, WW and Aquaman especially could carry their own I think.
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  15. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vordan View Post
    Mainly because when you look at the last two decades of Superman product, you realize DC hasn’t put out a Superman product for kids since Legion of Superheroes. Everything else, Smallville, the DCAMU, the DCEU, it’s all been for teens and older. Part of why I’m so happy to see a new Superman cartoon coming is that it will hopefully convert kids into Superman fans.

    Real shame they aren’t doing more cartoons for the other Leaguers, WW and Aquaman especially could carry their own I think.
    Aquaman does have that animated miniseries at least.

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