Monday, July 17, 2006

Superman Vs. Spider-Man

No, this one is not about the proper superhero costume (Though one can easily picture Superman explaining to Lois Lane: "What's the point of wearing your favorite red underpants if nobody ever gets to see 'em?").

This is about one of the great brand-loyalty debates: Marvel or DC?
DC Comics, led by Superman, was for people who adored the fantasy, the Ubermensch triumphant. These readers loved skyscrapers and archvillains and sidekicks, billowing flags, unerring ethical strength.

Marvel, led by Spider-Man, was a place for the smart but troubled reader, the deeply weird. They loved the night, the underground, accidents in the lab. All that dialogue, so many thought balloons! The heroes always on some emotional ledge, and the hubris of it all -- a grittiness that came with saving the world.

DC was about younger kids in back yards, wearing bath towel capes, leaping from treehouses.

Marvel was about older kids in basements, possibly stoned, deconstructing Thor.

DC invented places to go -- Metropolis, Gotham City, Paradise Island.

In the Marvel universe, New York is New York, and it's nothing but trouble.

[. . .]
Maybe it all does really boil down to those superhero underpants.

So, which comics brand is your favorite?

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