Thursday, September 13, 2018

Slugfest: Inside the Epic, 50-year Battle between Marvel and DC

Slugfest: Inside the Epic, 50-year Battle between Marvel and DCSlugfest: Inside the Epic, 50-year Battle between Marvel and DC by Reed Tucker
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Marvel or DC?

The two companies are the most recognizable names in the comic book industry and the two that have lasted the longest. They have depicted countless imaginary battles throughout their decades long history, but the biggest battle has been the one with each other. Slugfest tells the history of the 50 year battle between Marvel and DC.

Slugfest is exactly what it claims to be, a history book on the battle between Marvel and DC. It gives the facts with some small opinions and countless quotes from experts in the industry.

"DC characters are too perfect and pegged to a different time," said Joan Hilty, a DC editor from 1995 to 2010.

As a kid born in the '80s, DC characters being too perfect would be the perfect way to sum up my feelings about them. I grew up hating Superman and finding the Justice League dull except for Batman. Little did I know that when Marvel came on the scene and challenged the status quo of superheroes that my feelings were shared by the masses. DC was the behemoth before Marvel was even born, but due to their dominance they stopped feeling the need to innovate and Marvel took full advantage.

"...Marvel and DC's heroes are cut from different cloths. They're philosophically different and don't fit easily into the same story. DC's characters are clean, well-mannered boy scouts, and Marvel's heroes are flawed and more human."

Once Marvel over took DC in sales they seemingly never looked back and apparently have largely dominated the competition ever since. There have been titles and certain areas where DC has been more dominate in like TV and animation, but the Slugfest states DC has constantly trying to emulate Marvel to capture more of the market share.

Slugfest is largely a story of business. One company believed it was too big to be challenged by anyone and is flabbergasted to find itself at number two. Marvel and DC found themselves embattled from then on stealing ideas and employees from one another with occasional ceasefires for crossovers over the years. Both companies have had instances where they were driven by artistry, greed, arrogance, and competition. One thing is clear though the two need one another in a strange way. The victories wouldn't be so sweet and it seems neither could have survived this long without each other.

Slugfest is an informative read for comic lovers who enjoy knowing the history of their favorite childhood comic book heroes.

3.5 out of 5 stars

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