DC Versus Marvel: Who Won At SDCC?

DC and Marvel are the biggest rivals in the superhero world, and so in the interests of friendly rivalry, it’s time to run through the weekend’s announcements. Which company’s star shone the brightest? Whose movie announcements were the most exciting? And who made SDCC the greatest experience?

The Movies

Marvel Studios – A New Logo, Casting Information, and a Doctor Strange Trailer!

Last year, a corporate restructure separated Marvel Studios out from the wider Marvel company, leaving Kevin Feige reporting directly to Disney. With Captain America: Civil War out of the way, Marvel Studios has done a significant rebrand. As part of that, there’s both a new intro sequence and a new logo.

Marvel Studios’s focus at SDCC was on the experience. The Marvel Studios panel sounds to be one of the most unforgettable experiences ever, with a whole host of guests – and some serious special effects. At one point, every wall of Hall H was used as a screen to create a stunning backdrop as Benedict Cumberbatch’s Doctor Strange made his entry!

The real Marvel announcements, though, were cast-related. Brie Larson wasn’t really a surprise as , but the revelation that Michael B. Jordan is playing in Black Panther was a fun one. Lupita N’yong’o was also confirmed as the head of the Dora Milaje, Black Panther’s female bodyguards, while Danai Gurira will play Okoye.

In perhaps the strangest casting twist, Marvel announced the identity of Star-Lord’s father – ! Kurt Russell will play the part, and – while fans in Hall H were treated to a stunning video montage – we get this Instagram of Russell’s costume:

A photo posted by Ryan Penagos (@agentm) on

Rounding off the major casting information, we finally learned the characters of in Spider-Man: Homecoming!

Although Marvel’s being pretty stingy with the videos – the majority were shown exclusively at Hall H – we did, at least, get a new Doctor Strange ! Meanwhile, the cast largely confirmed details we already knew from the .

DC Film – Trailers Galore!

Where Marvel Studios concentrated on the SDCC experience, DC Film wowed us with trailers galore. The absolute highlight was the beautiful trailer for Wonder Woman, which left fans jubilant. The clip, meanwhile, finally allowed fans worldwide to see some of the scenes journalists and critics had back in June. To everyone’s surprise, DC Film also released a new teaser for , although it may have unwittingly revealed more than they realized. Unfortunately The Killing Joke is getting – one journalist shouted out his irritation at Batgirl’s portrayal during the panel – but, whether that animated movie proves to be a misstep or not, DC Animation is headed in the right direction again. The next three animated movies were announced; we already knew about , but sound fun.

Let’s be honest about it: the Wonder Woman trailer alone is hard to beat. Marvel Studios’s focus on the experience undoubtedly made SDCC one of the best experiences imaginable, but DC Film has been far less reticent at sharing their clips with the rest of the world. I’m giving the film victory to DC.

The Winner: DC!

The TV Shows!

DC TV: “Flashpoint”, Arrow, and More!

The first look at The Flash‘s next season reveals that the show is going to dive head-first into the ” ” arc! It’s no surprise, but it’s still tremendously cool. Meanwhile, The CW also gave us our first look at Arrow , while we got some huge for Legends of Tomorrow.

Marvel TV: Ghost Rider and a Focus on Marvel Netflix!

You know who's coming! Image: ABC

You know who’s coming! Image: ABC

The biggest reveal for Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. was that is coming to the show, to be played by Gabriel Luna (best known for playing Tony Bravo in Matador and Paco Contreras in Wicked City). The only other major tease was in the Women of Marvel panel, where we learned that next season will see Agent May getting an “upgrade” of some kind.

Marvel Netflix, though, absolutely stole the show. The panel gave us some wonderful scenes from the series, and also treated us to for Iron Fist and – most unexpectedly – The Defenders. The latter may well have revealed than you’d realize at first glance!

Even the logo is astounding!

Even the logo is astounding!

The most exciting surprise was of Daredevil Season 3, which I’m suspecting will follow the “Born Again” arc.

Finally, Marvel Entertainment and Fox Television chose to reveal the trailer for Legion. It’s definitely ! The show promises to be unlike any other superhero TV series airing right now, and looks to be rich in psychodrama.

Where DC shone in the films, Marvel Entertainment has triumphed in the TV shows – mostly because of the incredible degree of ‘awesome’ we’re seeing at Marvel Netflix. I can’t wait to see these shows!

The Winner: Marvel!

The Comics

Marvel: “Civil War II” Shatters the Marvel Universe, and the X-Men Go To War!

The Inhumans vs the X-Men! Image: Marvel Comics

The Inhumans vs the X-Men! Image: Marvel Comics

Right now, Marvel’s in the midst of their latest summer event – ” ” – which will divide the world’s superheroes. Marvel already released a preview comic for their post-event relaunch (Marvel NOW!), so most of SDCC was about putting flesh on those bones, and there were few surprises. At the moment Marvel’s current event is feeling like something of a ‘rinse-and-repeat’, with the event setting up a very familiar status quo and the post-event relaunch even featuring a recycled name. Frustratingly, there was a lot of repetition in the panels – on occasion Marvel ‘announced’ something already discussed in interviews prior to SDCC, and there was a real overlap between the Cup O’ Joe and the House of Ideas panel (although, to be fair, the panels got asked the same questions a lot of the time).

The only real surprise was that Marvel revealed the next X-Men event – Inhumans Versus X-Men, an event coming in the winter in which the Inhumans will go to war against the X-Men in order to preserve the Terrigen Mist. It promises to continue the growing divide between X-Men fans and Inhumans fans.

DC’s “Rebirth” Continues

DC's "Rebirth" is spectacular! Image: DC

DC’s “Rebirth” is spectacular! Image: DC

In a similar vein, DC’s “Rebirth” event continues to transform the DC Universe. While Marvel’s ” ” is feeling like a rinse-and-repeat, “Rebirth” is more of a course-correction, and seems to be doing phenomenally well; books are selling at four times the pre-“Rebirth” level. As with Marvel, the panels had few surprises, and were more about putting flesh on the bones of things we already knew.

This one’s a tough call; in my view, neither company really announced anything ground-breaking in terms of the comics. Marvel’s biggest announcement – Inhumans Versus X-Men – hasn’t really struck home, as it continues the current post-“Secret Wars” arc and is a second X-Men-versus-Inhumans event this year (possibly a third, given the Civil War II: X-Men miniseries is heading in that direction too). So, more out of my view on the current direction than anything else, I’m giving this one to DC.

The Winner: DC!

Overall, then, Marvel and DC fans have had an outstanding time at SDCC. Marvel’s television shows – particularly the incredible excitement for Marvel Netflix – earned them a win there, but DC Film’s wealth of trailers was simply unbeatable in the movies. Meanwhile, DC’s “Rebirth” direction has won them another success here. That means that, for me, the overall winner of SDCC was DC!

What do you think? Who won SDCC for you- Marvel or DC?

This means war!

This means war!


I’m a British guy who has a particular love of superhero movies – and I’m having a great time writing for Movie Pilot! Feel free to follow me on Twitter @TomABacon!