Too many people let a simple thing like Company Brand dictate what they enjoy. As I sit here and write this, there’s two Marvel films in theaters. Avengers: Age of Ultron and Ant-Man are in a theater somewhere in this country. ANT-MAN has been made into a movie. Never in my wildest youth imagination would I have predicted that there would be a film based on the comic book character Ant-Man. Yes, I’m astonished, and I’m elated! I was NEVER a fan of Ant-Man in the comics. Hell, I was never a fan of Iron Man or Captain America either, and yet I’ve enjoyed both of their films and now have a greater enjoyment for their characters in the books. But I grew up loving X-Men…and Batman! Gasp! ‘He’s with that other company, not with the wonderful Marvel, how dare you sir!’ I know, it’s crazy. I love both companies' characters and stories. And my question I pose today…why don’t you?
Let me get this clear, this isn’t going to be about Marvel VS DC. This is about why we even need to discuss such a mundane point. There’s so much to love about both, that the divide needs to end. Every year we come out of Comic Con with the same stupid debate. Who won? Was it DC? Marvel? Star Wars? The bigger question…who cares? Its a simple statement, when DC and Marvel compete, we as fans win. We have so much to look forward to in the coming years, that there can’t be a single fan left in those cold dark Gotham alleyways wondering “when’s it gonna be my turn?” Whether you’re a big fan of the X-Men, Spider-Man, Fantastic Four, Aquaman, Batman, Wonder Woman, it doesn’t matter. They’re all coming!
I can understand if you grew up reading one certain brand of books. Your pull list as a kid was all about the Silver Surfer and he is a Marvel character so your allegiance stands with the almighty Stan Lee. I get that. Now you’ve grown up and its time to branch out son…or daughter. Even within the company, there’s more to Marvel than just the Surfer. Get out there and try something new! Sometimes, a character gets reinvented by a new writer and artist. You may think Hawkeye is just this one dimensional archer guy, but when a new writer takes him into this incredible new direction he transcends his position within the Avengers and within S.H.I.E.L.D. and becomes something new and something exciting. The X-Men are about more than just super powers and blue creatures that look scary. There is so much depth in their plight that so many of us can relate to. Whether you’re an outcast at school because of the clothes you wear or music you listen to or you’re an outcast because of your color and religion, the pages of an X-Men book can speak to you.
You don’t have to like everything but you also don’t have to hate everything because that other company over there made it. Hey, you can even look outside of DC and Marvel and into the pages of Dark Horse and Image Comics (I highly recommend Morning Glories) and so many others as well. Take a look at Jenny’s great weekly column The Geekly Book Review (Here's Vol 1, Vol 2, Vol 3, & Vol 4) and she’ll show you what you can try out (she’s a great judge of quality writing and artwork, trust her!).
Even if you try out the other brands and you still don’t like it, there’s no reason that every tweet and message board post needs to be filled with hate. Again, we’re all fans and we all love the the things we love, so instead of raining on someone’s parade because they’re super stoked to see their favorite character on the big screen, say nothing or at the very least spark a FRIENDLY debate but don’t tell someone their opinion is wrong. They like something because it speaks to them, just the same as you liking something that someone else doesn’t like. Love the things you love and let’s all just have some fun in this incredible Geek Culture that we currently reside in. Geek Out!