Battle of the Big Screen

superman versus the hulkI’m not sure when it all began. Was it Batman, or Ultraman, or Superman?

Perhaps it was the death of Christopher Reeves that made everyone realise exactly what a comic-to-film movie promised: instant fame for said actor, millions in movie takings, zillions of toys for kids and adults, and more.

Perhaps that’s why so many of them have been made these past couple of years. X-Men, Y-Men, Hellboy, Swamp Thing, Z-Men, Fantastic Four, I could go on and on and just fill up this page.

I’m not complaining, they’re exactly how I like my movies: great looking people dressed in amusing outfits, wearing all sorts of cool stuff, doing good, inflicting violence and devastation (interestingly, sometimes to a greater extent than their nemeses), with even cornier enemies and their even more amusing outfits.

It doesn’t get better than if Cirque de Soleil comes to town, and is a lot cheaper than watching Quidam.

But still, there’s a lot to be said for often poor mimicries of comics. It’s rather difficult to develop a character in 2 hours time, much less 5. The development of the characters are often poor, as are plotlines, and as a result, comic-to-film movies often get a bad rap. Incredible Hulk is a fantastic example.

Eric Bana is a great actor, but for a good 10 minutes Incredible Hulk was more like Incredible Gummi Bear, bouncing all across the Northern American continent. They even charted his progress. Half the time, he’s in air, and once he got so high he saw stars. Literally. That’s carrying silliness a bit too far. And the ending? You could have printed “Incredible Hulk 2 coming soon” and it would have been more subtle.

Then there’s Hellboy. Hmmm. That’s about all I really can muster for the show. Of course, there are the better shows, that deal with issues more serious. Constantine (even though it seemed like a screener for a Quit Smoking campaign at times), and X-Men, are great successes, considering their new cult following, even if not entirely accurate in their portrayal of characters. But there’s only so much you can do in 2 hours.

But these are the shows that tell adults that comics aren’t just children’s books; they deal with mature issues that often affect us, albeit with supernatural powers. Perhaps that’s why so many children love X-Men. Or it could be just because they have cool powers.

But what I love about comic-to-film movies are the sometimes cheesy and interesting lines they can come up with. It’s something that would simply be outlandish if it was done by someone else.

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Can you imagine Michael Nyqvist saying “With great power comes great responsibility”? But Uncle Ben can get away with it because he’s dying, and it becomes so dramatic. So here’s a list of great lines I’ve recalled from all the comic-to-film movies I’ve watched. Enjoy.

“Do you know what happens to a toad when it’s struck by lightning? (dramatic pause) The same thing happens to everything else. (Insert “Whoops” here)”

– “One for every sin. So quite a few.”

– “Hold the door. You going down?”

“Not if I can help it.”

– “Yeah, what kind of mental patient kills herself? That’s just crazy. “

– “You’re f*cked. “

– “Well, I’ve always found him to be a little limp. “

– “Got it. Supernova bad. “

– “Now, dying… that’s bad, right?”

– “I am Catwoman. Hear me roar.”

– “Life’s a bitch, now so am I.”

– “You start pretending to have fun, you might even have a little by accident.”

– “Didn’t you get the memo?”

– “Uh, d-do you have a first name?”

“What do you mean, like, uh, Ralph or something?”

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