Comics Creators

DC Cinematic Universe - Wonder Woman, Justice League and More


Byrne’s Superman probably had ten times the readers of Kingdom Come on a monthly basis. It’s hard to imagine how popular comics were back then when they just hit that appeal between 10 to 29 year old readers.

I like more adult films but I think it’s a little dumb for a studio to spend $100 million to make a capes and powers movie that appeals to me and not to kids.

Warners really got it backwards. The adult audience is on television while the broad “family” audience wins in the theaters. I’d watch a Suicide Squad or Justice League Dark television show, but I expect the movies to be something that would appeal to my niece and nephew.

It’s crazy that Marvel got it right with their portfolio of bizarre dysfunctional heroes and DC got it entirely backwards.


Well, listen I don’t think you’re right about Byrne’s run… I mean, as good as it might’ve been or as much as it might’ve sold at the time, I don’t think it touches one of the books that sits along with Watchmen, DKR, Marvels, and that sort of seminal CB stories… But I don’t want to look up numbers and all that, 'cause I’m lazy. We could do a mini-poll here in MW, for a sample idea…

Anyways, as for the 2nd part… why would that be a dumb idea? It’s adults (and YA as well I suppose) who’ve got the disposable income to pay for the movies… Why should all SH-related things be kid-oriented?

Also, The whole Dark Knight trilogy was adult-oriented, it did spectacularly well, so not only you’re wrong, but WB already had a good succesful exemple and an actual precedent for that type of movie.

It would’ve actually been crazy if WB would’ve gone the “funny” route when considering the massive success of the Nolan trilogy… in fact, it was crazy when they tried it with GL and it just flopped…

I think reducing the issue to just your agument is not right, there were a lot of intersecting factors that tanked the “Snyder-verse”… it wasn’t the seriousness or the “darkness” of it all.


You mean Snyder embraced the criticism or the trend? I mean, dosn’t matter, he did both… MoS & BvS have a story arc quite similar to KC… you can see on JL that his plan was to get to that positive cheerful point… it was just gonna be a dark ride to get to it, much like KC.


Because, less and less, adults who want that sort of story don’t go to the cinema for it. The cinema is where families with kids, teens and shiftless students go in large numbers anymore. That sort of mature complex material and characterization “sells” on television and cable/streaming. It’s dumb to put your “mature” work in the cinema and your broad material on the little screens.

It was the “so not fun” factor that tanked the DC films. More to the point, none of the successful superhero films take themselves so seriously that they forget these are guys wearing tights and capes and primary colors (though with Snyder, you kinda forget these films are in any other color than steel blue and sulfur orange).


Eh… you’re still conveniently ignoring the pink Dark Knight in the room… or the pink Logan =P


While you are ignoring the bright red ENTIRE LINE OF MARVEL MOVIES, JUMANJI, INCREDIBLES, DESPICABLE ME and any number of movies that have made not only more money than the DC films, but also have fans today looking forward to the next installment.

It’s incomprehensible that Warner Brothers have intellectual properties that literally could fill every possible genre and appeal to any demographic, but they just want to make movies that people who liked the DARK KNIGHT might go see.


Dark can definitely work for superheroes, but I think the majority will only go along with some characters. Much as I love Kraven’s Last Hunt or The Death of Jean DeWollf, I know those won’t ever become mainstream Spidey films. Born Again would have no problem, though.


I’m not ignoring those… we all know they sell like crazy, that is not the issue you raised. WB is already exploiting those franchises on other places in a family-friendly manner, like TV and cartoons for both TV and cinemas… it’s not like they’re leaving money on the table.

I don’t find it weird or incomprehensible that they’d try to replicate the Nolan Trilogy success for the movies (which is exactly what they were going for with MoS and BvS, right down to having Nolan as a producer/consultant), quite the contrary as I said. They tried family-friendly and lighter with Green Lantern, that didn’t work, so they went back to a darker more realistic approach… seems quite logical to me… =/


Though they might make great Spidey television shows, if Sony would develop it.

My point is that DC shot right for a stupid cinematic superhero universe without considering the potential for all of their characters because they only focused on the success of THE DARK KNIGHT which was very short lived. Honestly, the only thing about the DARK KNIGHT that people really remember is Ledger’s performance and the fact no one could understand what Bane was saying.


Seems brainless. Which is an approach they’ve been using for some time. Green Lantern was about as family friendly as Ang Lee’s THE HULK. DC’s been chasing some other property for a long time. The only real unqualified success they’ve had was WONDER WOMAN. Every movie they made otherwise has always been behind the curve, and letting the guy who directed WATCHMEN take over their premiere superhero cinematic launch was bonkers. It was like Nolan making sure they would never surpass his mediocre Batman films.

Because, honestly, that is the truth about the Nolan Batman movies. They were just okay EXCEPT for Heath Ledger’s Joker performance. That was the best writing and acting. The Dark Knight is really a Joker movie.


Oh I agree with that… however both the 2nd and 3rd went over the billion WW (compared to Batman Begin’s meager 350mil WW). So wether they’re shit or not, they did EXTREMELY well at the time, and even by today’s standards.

I think the anti-Snyder bias has more to do with the failure rather than the actual approach, for exemple :smile:


Sure, but now we see that approach leads to diminishing returns. Including WATCHMEN in the mix.

It’s like trying to make a cinematic universe out of GODFELLAS or Orwell’s 1984. Sure, people will show up in the beginning, but it’s not a long term strategy when the novelty wears off. It just turns ugly, dark and desperate.


If you add up the cumulative gross of the last two Nolan films, the first two Snyder films, Wonder Woman, and Suicide Squad, I’m not sure this theory holds that much water. These 6 movies made about 5 billion dollars combined. I’m being slightly selective but JL was a dud for a whole host of reasons and Begins had to do heavy lifting in restoring the brand.

Who knows what they’d have made if the films were of a comparable quality but “family friendly” (whatever either of those terms mean to the individual)—maybe more although possibly less. Either way, the audience is definitely there for the more mature take.


What’s more… If we only take the “Snyderverse” movies (or the DCEU), meaning MoS, BvS, SQ, WW & JL… those 5 movies grossed a combined (roughly) 3.7 billion.

If we take every MCU movie from IM1, IH, IM2, Cap1, Thor1 & Avengers, you get roughly the same (3.8B) but for 6 movies… and 1.5B of that total is from Avengers…

So when you compare the “success” of both extended universes from their “inception” to their “big team-up movie”… it’s basically the same in terms of general gross, even though obviously JL massively underperformed compared to Avengers… I think it’s safe to say that JL would’ve made a lot more if Snyder had finished it properly…

The reality is the DCEU was doing ok, but the upper execs at WB got caught up in their own stupidity and greed, and possibly the lopsided “popular opinion” presented on-line which is something you should NEVER do… anyways… Numbers don’t lie… even with all the missteps and studio interference they managed to do roughly as well as Marvel (though they probably spent a bit more too*)… so again, the issue wasn’t really the approach.

*There’s no reported budget for JL on Box Office Mojo… but according to those numbers, the 6 MCU movies cost 1B to make, and MoS, BvS, SQ + WW cost 800M… it’s safe to say that JL would probably have a reported budget of at least 250M (like for BvS), but even at 350M it would tally a 1.15B for 5 movies… again, that’s not even that much of a difference all in all… I’m sure WB didn’t make as much back from their movies though, but again, that’s cause they interfered waaaaaay to much, so fuck them… u_u


Let’s be honest, this is all just picking sets of data to try and support the argument we want to make, rather than actually looking at the numbers to see what they tell us.

I don’t really care to wade into the argument as it’s pretty done to death now, but I don’t think that deliberately cherry-picking figures from high- or low- performing films on both sides and then insisting that “the numbers don’t lie” helps move the conversation on in any meaningful way.


I’m not cherry picking anything… I merely took the numbers of the first 5 (and 6) movies of both extended universes… I think it’s a fair comparaison… and what they tell us is that, at least numbers wise, there isn’t a huge difference as the popular opinions would suggest.

Now if we get into critical acclaim, wether people liked them or not, and other parameters, sure, opinions might vary. But in terms of box office earnings, well yes: “the numbers don’t lie” :smile:

The DCEU wasn’t doing nearly as badly as people say it was.

But getting back to Jhonny’s argument, I really don’t think the “tone” of the movie was the problem in this instance, and when adding the results of Logan and Deadpool into the equation, I have to say I don’t see how his argument holds up. What I’m saying is: there’s no real “proof” that a more family-friendly approach is better or that it would yield more earnings.


You don’t see that the data sets you choose and the comparisons you choose to make are everything? For example, you selected a different number of films on each side, that came out across a different timespan, in different time periods. The only common factor was that they were all ‘shared-universe’ movies.

(And even then it’s slightly spurious - I mean, when Man Of Steel came out it wasn’t even a shared-universe movie, they just made it one retrospectively because they decided to go that way with BvS.)

It’s human nature to view evidence in a way that supports your feelings on a subject, but we can’t pretend this is rigorous economic analysis. :slight_smile:


No… the argument is that DCEU “failed” because of the “darker” tone and the serious approach. So taking from the “first” movies up to the “big team-up” movies on both EUs as comparaison is far from being random… They share a lot more than what you suggest… IM1 wasn’t supposed to be the start of a decade long shared universe either… There were 4 or 5 before a big team-up movie… Some did well, some did not, etc… I mean, in the end we can consider those two groups of movies as the respective “Phase 1” of each EU… how is that comparaison not fair (specially since we’re comparing the MCU movies with the DCU movies)? Which movies do you think would make for a more fair comparaison, the Phase 2 ones? surely not… =/

Sure, but it’s useful data to refute an argument. And at any rate, as I said, we have Logan, Deadpool and the X-Men movies in general which are usually darker and more serious (most of which also did good numbers)… that adds more data against his argument.


I seem to recall @garjones (I think it was) a while ago had a post where he pointed out that going by both RT scores and box office performance, the Snyderverse films haven’t fared well. I remember naively thinking at the time that was the final word on the matter.

I get that the films have their fans, and that’s cool — I enjoy at least some of each of them and don’t think any are awful. But to keep trying to make the case that the world is wrong seems…futile, at best.


I may have done, If I did I’ve forgotten it all now. That’s being middle aged for you. :smile: