Friday Debate: Enough with the Superhero movies already!

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It seems that we’re still being bombarded with Super Hero movies. This week saw the release of Guardians of the Galaxy 2, and it’s apparently quite good – but it’s yet another in a long line of movies about comic book characters. It’s probably because these sorts of movies are safe for studios; great big blockbusters that are more likely than not to rake in the cash.

There’s still much more to come; in the next year or so we’ll see Wonder Woman, Spiderman: homecoming, Thor: Ragnarok, The Inhumans, Justice League, Deadpool 2, Black Panther, Bloodshot, Avengers: Infinity War and probably more that I’ve forgotten about.

Both Marvel and DC are building these great big cinematic universes, with movies and sequels planned right through to the next decade. It’s become an endless parade of tights and capes – and it’s getting a little damned boring.

We watch things anyway, of course, almost feeling like we’re sticking with things out of obligation rather than genuine interest. Can it be sustained? Steven Spielberg doesn’t think so – saying the blockbuster model that drives superhero flicks will go the way of the Western.

“I still feel that way. We were around when the Western died and there will be a time when the superhero movie goes the way of the Western. It doesn’t mean there won’t be another occasion where the Western comes back and the superhero movie someday returns. Of course, right now the superhero movie is alive and thriving. I’m only saying that these cycles have a finite time in popular culture. There will come a day when the mythological stories are supplanted by some other genre that possibly some young filmmaker is just thinking about discovering for all of us.”

Me? I can’t wait for the super hero cycle to complete. But am I wrong? Darryn says…maybe.

“Geoff’s got a point. There’s only so many times you can watch a highly-paid actor dress up in bright spandex and watch them close a space-anus in the sky. And yet, I’m still not tired of these flicks. It’s not the actual on-screen action and special effects that make these films special, but rather the lessons beneath the surface that are worth exploring.

An idea of being better, of being more than you currently are. I’m a big believer that we need heroes now more than ever, even if they’re fictional. Inspiration for the price of a movie ticket and dodgy popcorn? I can live with that. Maybe more than that, however, is the utter joy at seeing my favourite characters given the spotlight. Characters who deserve to be remembered beyond the printed page, and any of those other terrible adaptations that almost killed them.

Comic book movies are a reminder why I love the medium, the greatest American art form ever. Something that I’ll never get tired of.”

What say you? Done with it all, or happy to see more?

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Critical Hit as an organisation.

Last Updated: May 5, 2017

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Geoffrey Tim

Editor. I'm old, grumpy and more than just a little cynical. One day, I found myself in possession of a NES, and a copy of Super Mario Bros 3. It was that game that made me realise that games were more than just toys to idly while away time - they were capable of being masterpieces. I'm here now, looking for more of those masterpieces.

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