Have you ever imagined what today’s culture would be like if comic books had never existed? It’s fair to say that they’ve had a pretty extensive influence on action movies, games, events and merchandise since the early 20th century. Being a comic fan around that time meant you were part of a pretty minor subculture. Nowadays, it’s as mainstream as it can get.
With the release of the extended second Avengers: Age of Ultron trailer (which you can watch below), let’s start the hype with a look at how comics have had an effect on modern society and media.
Any Comic Con you go to across the globe, you’re likely to see your fair share of Marvel and DC cosplayers – the Poison Ivys, the Batmans, the Supermans, the Thors and Lokis and of course, an abundance of Deadpools. As its name suggests, Comic Con was initiated to appreciate and accommodate comic book fans on an international scale. So what would be left if the biggest convention in the world didn’t have that element?
Marvel have been announcing installments to the Avengers series up to 2019, as well as DC preparing for a whole variety of releases, including Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice (March 25 2016), Wonder Woman (June 23 2017) and a two-part Justice League movie.
Hollywood knows that every one of these movies is going to be a hit at the box office. Avengers Assemble is the third-highest grossing movie of all time in the US Box Office, with The Dark Knight close behindin fourth place. At least 20% of the first two hundred movies on the list are based on comic books, which shows how incredibly popular these movies are with the fans.
Comic book-themed video games come around just as frequently as the movies. There are plenty of new releases being announced, one of the most anticipated being Batman: Arkham Knight, due to be released next June. Comic-based games have been popular since the 90s, and the theme has even spread beyond console games – board games like Justice League Monopoly, and online games, such as video slot machines based on characters, and MMORPGs where you can play as superheroes in the DC or Marvel universe against thousands of other players.
Let’s face it, the comic fan-base is one of the biggest in the world, and certainly one of the oldest. The age range is something to consider too. Some kids’ first words are the names of superheroes, right up until the elderly comic-readers who have been part of the subculture since it’s beginning. So, as much as the original comics influence today’s culture, it’s also down to the fans and their dedication to something that mainstream media would be pretty plain without.