For those who like to compare Marvel and DC and pretend like they aren’t both selling the same thing to audiences in different packaging (one is shiny, the other is gritty, both are mass produced), here’s another issue they can debate: the crossover of the brands’ movie and television worlds. Marvel has sort of flirted with it, particularly from a narrative perspective, with their films and programs taking place in the same realm, and referencing events from each (see the nod to “Avengers: Age Of Ultron” in “Daredevil“). And according to Kevin Feige, it’s only a matter of time until major characters start making the shift between the big and small screen.

“I think that’s inevitable at some point as we’re plotting the movies going forward and they’re doing the shows,” he said during a recent Q&A (via IGN). However, the big factor right now is scheduling, with Marvel’s movies and shows moving at different speeds, so arranging cameos that make sense can be tricky. “Going forward and certainly as [Marvel’s TV division] begin to do more shows and cast them with such great actors as they have — particularly ‘Daredevil’ — [crossovers] may occur. A lot of it is by the time we start doing a movie, they’d be midway through a season; by the time it comes out they’d be done with the second, starting the third season. Finding timing on that is not always easy.”

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However, over at DC, they are not intrigued by the notion of mixing up their universes. The comic company already has a few shows on the go (“Arrow, “The Flash,” “Gotham“) and there’s no plans to try and cross-pollinate. “[We] could end up handcuffing our creators into trying to work with the same storyline or force them to hold back characters or introduce certain characters. Ultimately it hinders the ability for someone like [showrunner] Bruno Heller to come in and create ‘Gotham.’ “ Diane Nelson, president of DC Entertainment and WB Consumer Products and president-chief content officer of Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, said at Variety‘s Technology and Entertainment Summit earlier this month.

But don’t take that as shade thrown at Marvel. Nelson says their playbook “has worked beautifully” for them, but it’s not a good fit for DC. Makes sense to me.

But what do you think? Is Marvel biting off more than they can chew? Is DC playing it safe? Or are both companies doing what’s best for the brand? Let us know below.

  • trekkie

    Soon, Marvel fanboys who poop on Star Trek for getting "bogged down with canon" and eventually contradicting itself will be sitting in a shit-bed of their own making. Because they are fans, they will do as we Trek fans do, and say "who cares, it\’s fiction". But until then they will continue feeling superior. Enjoy it while it lasts.

  • Gracie

    It might be because DC wants people to remember the character rather than the actor that portrays them. That being said, it is hard for the audience to know what is canon and what is creative input of the writers and directors.
    On the Marvel side, it is easier for the audience to know the story of a character from graphic novel to the series to the movies. But it becomes harder to fit a character into different stories with other characters because all of them inhabit the same universe. Timelines would begin to conflict with other timelines. And they all have to fit or they wouldn\’t make sense.

  • MAL

    Frankly, I prefer the DC route. As a viewer, it\’s hard to find the time and inclination to invest in a universal approach. When Agents of Shield had an episode linked entirely to Thor 2, it was almost enough to put me off the series (especially had that direction continued). While I like many of the movies in the Avengers universe, I am not a Thor fan and felt a little "held hostage to the cult." With DC\’s approach, I don\’t feel I have missed out by not watching one or the other but can still enjoy the characters as stand-alone or in their respective television series.