Although there are many comic book companies, no two are more beloved in the popular culture than DC and Marvel. Because of both companies’ significance, fans have conjured up a friendly rivalry between the two brands for decades.
DC set the foundation for what modern superheroes are all about with characters such as Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman among many others. As for Marvel, their characters represent the highs and lows of being an individual who happens to have special powers. Heroes that have exemplified that notion include Spider-Man and Captain America.
Some readers prefer the heroes of DC due to the characters’ status as gods among us. Others prefer Marvel’s characters, usually due to the fact that they can easily see themselves in them. To put it simply, DC represents gods wanting to be human while Marvel represents humans wanting to be gods.
Cort Lane, vice president of Marvel Animation believes that Marvel’s catalogue of characters are more relatable than DC’s for numerous reasons:
“Marvel characters are less iconic and more just like you. They have flaws, they have a sense of humor and they have relatable problems. Every Spider-Man character is a relatable character. And Tony Stark, while wholly problematic by every definition, is still a lovable character.
Lane also describes how he feels about the way DC’s characters are portrayed:
“DC operates on a different level — and that’s not to say it’s bad.What all the movies and the media have shown us over the years is that mining the flaws and reliability — and mining through those threats — to try and find a personal moment people can relate to is what registers. It’s pure. A great Marvel story is about caring about the character in the costume, not the other way around.”
Lane’s argument is sound, but I would argue that even with the larger-than-life status that DC’s heroes possess, deep inside their consciousness are certain human desires. Sure, Superman and Wonder Woman have all the power in the world, but their respective desires to see the good in mankind and doing the right thing because it’s the only just option represents the best of humanity.
Both DC and Marvel’s characters exhibit human nature in numerous ways. If one stops and thinks about the impact they have to inspire generations of readers and audiences, one can come to the conclusion that DC’s characters are who we want to be while Marvel’s characters are who we actually are.