Mixed reviews or not, Suicide Squad just finished its third week at the top of the box office charts according to Box Office Mojo. Billboard puts the soundtrack at number one for the second consecutive week as well. Say what you will, but that is a difficult task for any film to duplicate. So, does this mean that Suicide Squad’s success prove that DC can compete with Marvel when it comes to movies?
There is certainly evidence to suggest that DC is very much in the lead on the small screen as it compares to Marvel. Through week 47, according to TV Series Finale in the all important 18-49 demographic, Supergirl and The Flash are both ahead in the ratings compared to Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. With Supergirl now on The CW, DC has built a television shared universe that has squashed Marvel’s network shows.
Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. will be the only Marvel property on any network this fall. Marvel’s Agent Carter stalled out last year in it’s second season. They also failed to materialize any interest in Marvel’s Most Wanted, a spinoff to S.H.I.E.L.D. This is particularly surprising considering Disney owns both Marvel and ABC. This should give DC fans hope for the future.
While television seems to be DC’s for the time being, the large screen is where Marvel has been whipping DC. However, things could be changing in this area if this week’s box office numbers are any indication. Before this can be dismissed as an untruth, take a look at the Suicide Squad as it compares to Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy.
Box Office Mojo compared Suicide Squad and Guardians of the Galaxy’s first 17 days domestically. At this point even with international numbers taken out, Suicide Squad is still ahead by about $4 million. So, as enamored with Marvel as some critics tend to be, DC properties are still performing well in theaters.
DC’s win at the box office and on television can be dismissed by some as being an issue of timing. Suicide Squad obviously has been helped out by the fact that little has been released in the month of August that would be considered a big blockbuster title. However, what about when it comes to the medium these characters all come from, comics?
Marvel has enjoyed quite a bit of success in comics the last few years. In fact, it has not been unusual to see Marvel own 90 percent of the top 10 comics in any given month, However, July saw a reversal, and DC reigned supreme.
DC recently launched its Rebirth storyline. Comichron compiles comic book sales numbers. In July, DC comics seven of the top ten spots and 21 of the top 25. That is a pretty amazing number. This constitutes the second straight month DC has won. It will most likely have Marvel worried.
While the short term is bright for Marvel, DC has made changes to better position themselves in all area of entertainment particularly movies. DC Entertainment was formed by Warner Bros. in response to the bad publicity Batman vs. Superman received. They hired Geoff Johns as co-president alongside Jon Berg.
Geoff Johns has been one of the main writers for DC for a number of years, but he cut his teeth in Hollywood. He interned under Richard Donner (Superman and Superman II). He has also written for some of DC’s most beloved television properties including Smallville which ran for 10 seasons on The WB/The CW.
So, Does the Suicide Squad’s success prove DC can compete with Marvel? Only time will tell if this could be the case, but it certainly says that the DC properties can compete. With characters like Superman and Batman in the fold, the right leadership could not just compete but win.
[Image via AP Photo/Joel Ryan]