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Old September 25th, 2006   Jeff Shabazz is offline   #1
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Default Why do you think Marvel always beats DC?

Simple question. Why?

My answer:

1. Marvel characters are more saturated into the public consciousness and have been for a long time. Only Superman and Batman rival this exposure.

2. Popular Marvel characters are generally more appealing to the "every man" and tend to be "cooler" and look cooler to the average person. This led to more people deciding to read about them.

3. The X-Men. Quite simply, this is the most commercially appealing comic group ever created, and this leads to tons of spin offs that generate purchases.

4. Once Marvel has a character that sells, even a little, they exploit it and weave endless stories about them. I.E. they stick to their guns. DC, on the other hand, tends to discard characters and replace them, even when they are doing quite well. The direct result is that Marvel readers continue to buy and read multiple titles about a familiar character, while DC readers are always forced to decide if they want to read about a new version of their beloved characters.

5. Marvel doesn't ever play it safe while DC usually does, however (going back to #4) Marvel goes off the deep end without replacing or removing familiar faces. If anything, they add to them.

In short, Marvel gives comic readers what they want: wild stories with radical changes without replacing or removing familiar characters.

DC, with it's incredible depth of characters to choose from, could easily emulate Marvel's success. Instead they choose to kill off or replace money sinks. It's no wonder Marvel wins every month, every year, and continues to pump out movie after money making movie, and all DC has to show is a few good Batman movies and '52'.
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Old September 25th, 2006   ConnorFan is offline   #2
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1-3 I agree with 4-5 imo dont really change anything, both DC and Marvel get bumps from these things not long lasting sales. DC gets spikes through legacy characters that allow the reader who hasnt been reading DC for 30 years to hop on, while marvel goes for radical events that change very little but in the story themselves they are huge.

My 4 and 5 would be:

4. Art... Marvel has a house style, and 99% of their main line is accessable in terms of art. That is not to say that DC has bad artists, just that they are more willing to take a chance on an artistic style that may not translate all too well. When I pick up a marvel book 9 times out of 10 I will get a strong straight forward art style that I can follow. Perkins Ryan Mcknivn and company all have adapted to the marvel style, so Union Jack feels like it is in the same universe as Civil War. Ryan is leaving New Excalibur for Runaways... but I'm not worried because whoever they get will follow along nicely in the same kind of style, maybe a little better or a little worse but I highly doubt i wont be able ot read it or will be willing to stop reading the book because of art.

5. Better marketing... for gods sake have you seen the civil war trailers? They are freaking amazing. When I read about something coming out of marvel even if I hate the concept I still can acknowledge that it sounds good for whatever audience they are targeting. Sometimes DC's stuff is kinda simple and lacks flair. Like they dont know who they are appealing to so they try to appeal to everyone and appeal to no one.
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Old September 25th, 2006   mandoImissmst3k is offline   #3
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marvel has a house style? really?
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Old September 25th, 2006   PMH is offline   #4
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5. Better marketing... for gods sake have you seen the civil war trailers? They are freaking amazing. When I read about something coming out of marvel even if I hate the concept I still can acknowledge that it sounds good for whatever audience they are targeting. Sometimes DC's stuff is kinda simple and lacks flair. Like they dont know who they are appealing to so they try to appeal to everyone and appeal to no one.
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I liked their latest trailer a lot. It was really cool! I hated the past ones though cause of the guy talking in them. His voice was so annoying! Or maybe it was in the Planet Hulk trailer.
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Old September 25th, 2006   Can1 is offline   #5
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Marvel consistently produces quality product and has done so for years.

Marvel understands their market and has so for years.

Marvel produces to their market ... etc.

DC has too long attempted to play to Marvels market instead of establishing their own.

Marvel books in the top twenty feature either the XMen or Spider-Man or some combination of the two.

With all of that .. and the ground that DC has to make up ... have to be pleased with the results so far
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Old September 25th, 2006   mego joe is offline   #6
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I really have no idea, b/c DC has appealed to me much more than Marvel since I was about 14 (I'm 36 now). I can't tell you the last time I read a Marvel Comic. I just don't get it. For me, DC is where it's at.
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Old September 25th, 2006   Matt Olsen is offline   #7
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I think it largely comes down to the fact that Marvel's iconic characters were created decades after DC's iconic characters, so Marvel's speak to a modern sensibility a little better.

I also think that today's readership (with some exceptions like myself) was mostly formed in the 80s and 90s when Marvel was focusing on its core characters while DC was putting more of its weight behind second and third-tier characters and let their lead properties atrophy a bit. At least, that's the impression I have.

And yeah, Marvel seems to be more committed in the marketing and licensing departments.

In my opinion, the business about replacing lower tier characters is more of a personal gripe and has less market impact than you might think.
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Old September 25th, 2006   Joshua Pantalleresco is offline   #8
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Marvel has for the longest time simply catered to their audience. I don't think their stories are necessarily better (though some admittedly are cool) but they do a better job hyping up their own events then DC does. Joe Quesada does a Q and A with the fans virtually every week....there seems to be more of an attempt by Marvel to reach out to people and that I think is the difference. It's not so much the product, but more about who caters to whom.

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Old September 25th, 2006   married guy is offline   #9
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I think it's simply Marvel are pumping out stories people want to read.

Even though I'm not a big Marvel fan, Civil War certainly got my interest.
Spider-Man & X -Men have BIG name writers and artists and some of the healthiest movie franchises around.

Marvel are MUCH better at convincing people what they want.
DC/Warner Bros. have dropped the ball WAY too many times.
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Old September 25th, 2006   Danjester is offline   #10
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I used to read pretty much exclusively marvel books. That's now swung the other way so dramatically that the ONLY monthly I get from Marvel is She-Hulk. None of their other stuff interests me enough to pick it up.

I get the odd mini or tpb but beyond that I don't like their current product generally.
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Old September 25th, 2006   Brupaste is offline   #11
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I suppose Marvel (in its' day) was more 'real' than DC, which was both new and appealing to the masses. Now, why people need 'reality' in stories about men and women with superpowers is beyond me. The absurdity of a lot of DC's books are what drew me in as a kid. Peter Parker's pimples vs. Beppo the Super Monkey? No contest!

These days, though, who knows? I know which side I'm on: DC's!
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Old September 25th, 2006   GLJeans is offline   #12
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I tend to go with the marketing style theories. This is odd only because the giant that is warner should easily beat them at this game. How deep is warner's committment to comics?

Marvel has also amassed a coolness factor that is hard for dc to beat. I may feel this is somewhat undeserved because I do prefer DC and have always been somewhat of a maverick, but it's there.

Try discussing DC with a rabid Mavellite, ...sheesh!
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Old September 25th, 2006   Superman Prime is offline   #13
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Marvel doesn't do re-orders. I hear that plays a big part in why they beat DC.
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Old September 25th, 2006   Navydeepsea is offline   #14
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I don't why Marvel beats DC. The first Marvel comic I bought in years was the first issue of the New Invaders, and it SUCKED. I am buying and enjoying the Agents of Atlas series now. Otherwise all DC and indy's for me.
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Old September 25th, 2006   dragon.king is offline   #15
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Marvel? What is this thing you call... Marvel?
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Old September 25th, 2006   alucardbarnivous is offline   #16
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I think it's because the American audience has been lead by the mass media to lean towards material that is bright, flashy, explicit, shocking, and not necessarily of much substance. That's why the Academy Awards are quickly becoming an award ceremony for films nobody goes to see. That's why most news channels rely on agenda setting, human interest, and a ridiculous severity of gatekeeping (all with bright lights and titles that "pop").
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