Comic book readers worldwide are often divided into very distinct factions, Team Marvel or Team DC. Many debates have transpired that pitted the roster of superheroes for each company against one another. With very distinct characters, storylines, and visual presentation, both Marvel and DC Comics have found a way to coexist and come to dominate the comic book industry. Both the Marvel and DC comics are industry titans that have enjoyed unparalleled sales and success both domestically and internationally. While the two companies similarities have allowed them to coexist, it is their differences that have allowed both companies to thrive. Before discussing the differences between the two companies, it is important to note the similarities between the two in order to understand how their differences evoke such rabid support amongst each company’s fan base.
Both Marvel and DC Comics were founded in the 1930’s. In 1934, under the name National Allied Publications, DC Comics was founded. Five years later, Marvel Comics was founded, but under a different name (Timely Comics). Both Marvel and DC Comics are currently based in New York City and are both subsidiaries of larger corporations. Marvel Comics became a subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company in 2009 following Disney’s purchase of Marvel Entertainment. DC Comics was founded under the auspices of Warner Brothers Entertainment where it has remained since its creation.
While both Marvel Comics and DC Comics are well known for their print comics, each company has expanded its portfolios to include cartoons, movies, video games, clothing, and apparel. This expansion is what lead to and continues to sustain the popularity, influence, and financial stability of both companies. Moreover, both publications have had crossovers with other popular comic franchises. Marvel Comics’ first crossover, the popular “Marvel vs. Capcom” series, pitted Marvel characters against Capcom characters together, and remains one of the most popular crossover series even today. DC Comics’ recent foray into “crossing over” was the “Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe” series.
At the center of both companies is their roster of heroes and villains that possess special powers and abilities. The most notable Marvel superheroes include Captain America, Spider-Man, Iron Man, Thor, Wolverine and Cyclops (of the immensely popular X-Men franchise). While the most notable and, arguably, well known DC superheroes include Superman, Batman, The Flash, The Green Lantern, and Wonder Woman. The most popular Marvel supervillains are Green...