Go Back  DVD Talk Forum > Entertainment Discussions > Comic Book Talk
Reload this Page >

Which company is more obsessed with continuity, DC or Marvel?

Comic Book Talk The Place to talk about Comics

Which company is more obsessed with continuity, DC or Marvel?

Old 08-03-10, 04:42 PM
  #1  
Banned
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 53
Which company is more obsessed with continuity, DC or Marvel?

I'd say Marvel as they were constantly referencing previous issues right from the start of FF & Amazing Spidey, while DC went with standalone single issue storys for decades. Or is it one of the other smaller companies?
TheMadFapper is offline  
Old 08-03-10, 05:18 PM
  #2  
Banned
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Puerto Rico
Posts: 11,975
Re: Which company is more obsessed with continuity, DC or Marvel?

Neither DC or Marvel care about continuity anymore. The reboot or undo stuff all the time, now more than ever.
dx23 is offline  
Old 08-03-10, 06:44 PM
  #3  
DVD Talk Limited Edition
 
Travis McClain's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Western Hemisphere
Posts: 7,294
Re: Which company is more obsessed with continuity, DC or Marvel?

I can't speak to the last decade of comics, because I haven't been an active reader in that time. During the time I was, though, it seemed to me that Marvel's writers were more apt to namedrop events from previous issues. At least, it seems that I saw a lot more editor's notes in Marvel titles. Whether those references were proof positive of any kind of "obsession" with continuity, I can't say, but it seemed that Marvel made a bigger deal out of maintaining awareness of their back issues.

But then, it seemed that was part of the appeal of Marvel in general; Stan's Soapbox and the editorial remarks, in addition to the letters columns and No-Prizes, helped cultivate a sort of in-crowd readership. I think those references to previous issues were largely there to reward longtime readers.

With the superhero crowd, I preferred DC's characters, but I read G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero, Transformers and some of the other non-superhero titles Marvel published, and I always liked that style of theirs that broke the fourth wall, so to speak. I always found DC's editorial style more formal, and more likely to take their content seriously.
Travis McClain is offline  
Old 08-03-10, 07:00 PM
  #4  
DVD Talk Hero
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Posts: 27,666
Re: Which company is more obsessed with continuity, DC or Marvel?

Weren't FF and Spidey and much of early Marvel written by the same person/people? Much, much easier to have continuity, though they did have a different feel from the DC universe at the time; events that happened in the book affected future stories, instead of a bunch of standalone stories that could have been told in any order.

But DC made some effort to fit the golden age heroes in with the silver age (starting with the two flashes issue) with the Earth 1 and Earth 2 stuff way back when... and they were the first to do a major reboot with the initial Crisis in order to try to get continuity down (which totally devastated the Legion of Super Heroes, who no longer had a Superboy to inspire them). The problem, as dx23 stated, is that they constantly reboot over and over, sometimes with a big event (Infinite Crisis, Zero Hour, etc.) and sometimes just by retconning (non-matrix Supergirl, Superman was Superboy and did join the Legion at one point). I'm not sure if it's the editors not caring, or if continuity just becomes this unwieldy beast with the number of different writers tackling the same universe of characters over decades.

I think it also matters if the writers care. Kurt Buseik really digs tying continuity together (see his Avengers Forever or his run on the original Avengers where he essentially brought back 3d-man). James Robinson loves to flesh out characters and cities (see Starman). Geoff Johns loves to tie things together (JSA, Green Lantern, Legion of three worlds).

As for other companies, it's much easier to keep a tight continuity with a smaller number of books and a smaller number of writers, but I did appreciate how "unified" Shooter's Valiant was until he was ousted. And CrossGen seemed pretty tied into continuity while keeping the books largely separate, which was cool.

On a side note, I miss the little captions where it would tell you that some event happened back in issue #XX. Now I read books like Teen Titans, where a member (Kid Eternity) has been missing for months now, with no reference from the team about trying to find him, and no clue on what his fate was (which was revealed in a non-titans related book).

Last edited by fujishig; 08-03-10 at 07:02 PM.
fujishig is offline  
Old 08-04-10, 11:38 AM
  #5  
Banned
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 53
Re: Which company is more obsessed with continuity, DC or Marvel?

fujishig, some excellent points. Many of the Marvel titles in the first decade or so were written by Stan Lee although Jack Kirby did have a fair amount of editorial input.

As for DC, the biggest problem for them after the Crisis was trying to reconcile the Legion of Super Heros and it's history with SuperBoy and still make it work in then current continuity while disavowing that SuperBoy ever existed. They never did seem to make it work, not without breaking the elastic suspension of disbelief rubber band and making it snap back into the readers eye.
TheMadFapper is offline  
Old 08-04-10, 02:33 PM
  #6  
DVD Talk Hero
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Posts: 27,666
Re: Which company is more obsessed with continuity, DC or Marvel?

As a Legion fan, I thought Giffen and co. did a decent job with what they were given post Crisis. Taking away Superboy put a huge monkey-wrench in the Legion, and they had the whole Time Trapper story and bubble universe and all that stuff. But then in v.4 (which admittedly some people absolutely hated), I thought they did a great job explaining how Valor/Mon-el basically replaced Supes as the legendary hero, who seeded all the UP planets.

The problem is that this got very convoluted with L.E.G.I.O.N. (I'm still not sure whey they decided Phase was NOT Phantom Girl), the youthful, possible clone legionnaires, Earth blowing up, and then they decided to reset everything with Zero Hour. I mean look at Zero Hour, it was basically an excuse to try to clean up out of control continuity yet again, most of them caused by Crisis (Katar Hol/Hawkman, Legion of Superheroes, for whatever reason re-aging some of the JSA).

And now the basic tenets of the original Crisis are thrown out the window. We have the multiverse again. We have Superman not being the only Kryptonian, not being depowered, and having had his powers in his youth and having been a part of the Legion. We have Wonder Woman... well, we can probably just consider the current version an Elseworlds. We have Barry Allen back as Flash, with a radically de-aged Iris Allen (and nobody noticing). Soon, Bruce will be back.
fujishig is offline  
Old 08-05-10, 03:07 PM
  #7  
DVD Talk Limited Edition
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 5,731
Re: Which company is more obsessed with continuity, DC or Marvel?

They both care about the same. It's just that continuity now means all of the "big" events of the company's publishing history (crisis', deaths, origins, landmark arcs -- except for when those things get retconned out), and then the last 10 years of publishing history.
boredsilly is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.