Comic books have been a staple for television and movies lately. Both of the major comic book companies in the U.S have seen properties made into blockbuster films and ratings generating television series.
Recently the major networks have seen a number of primetime comic book shows with Marvel returning to primetime with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D on ABC which is owned by Disney which in turn has control of Marvel Comics, popular series The Walking Dead on AMC, and DC Comics’ Arrow on The CW which is owned in part by Warner Bros. which has control of DC Comics.
DC Comics has a long history on The CW—and prior to that on the WB—with the popular Batman: The Animated Series, the long time syndication of the 1960s cult Batman series, and Smallville, a kind of prequel to Superman. CW’s involvement with comics also includes popular series Supernatural getting a mini-comic book series under DC’s Wildstorm imprint.
In development for The CW is a series based on The Flash. There have also been reports on a series for the hero Hourman and another series based on iZombie.
In a change for DC Comics series, the new series Gotham is a Batman prequel that will air on Fox. The series follows Commissioner Gordon prior to Batman ascending to the mantle of hero of Gotham City.
In an interview CW President Mark Pedowitz commented on the company having so many franchises to choose from. “Having those franchises allows you also to incubate and get new product to come out and increases your development capability,”
Netflix will be cashing in on the comic book trend as well with four miniseries that will be 13 episodes each. The miniseries being developed by Netflix are mostly from Marvel with Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Iron Fist, and Luke Cage. The show will all see a debut in 2015.
The popularity of Marvel movies on Netflix are a primary factor in the company going with their series.
The best thing with Netflix going with these particular characters is that the series should all interact heavily with each other since all of the characters generally deal with street-level crime and villains.
Personally, I’ve always felt that while comic books have been tremendous for the big screen and have made tens of millions, television seems like the better fit given that story arcs can be ran over a season. Television allows for the show to be more authentic to the actual material should they go in a direction that is true to the series.
When it comes to series, I’d love to see a live action adaption of Image Comics’ Spawn or for there to be a reboot of Witchblade.
How about you? Which series would you like to see given the TV show treatment? Which do you prefer between comic books on TV or comic books on film? Give us a shout in the comments below.