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C'mon, Hollywood: Is television about to experience superhero overload?

01.28.2014

I think all of us can agree that comic books are f*cking awesome. They have no doubt been a huge inspiration for our generation and it shows with the rapidly increasing amount of comic book adapted films and television shows. People are finally able to see their favorite comic book/graphic novel characters come to life, both on the big screen and the small one. However, with so many new comic book based pieces of entertainment being announced, have we finally reached the point of overkill? Are we about to get bombarded by superheroes to the point of excess? 

Now that Disney has Marvel by the balls bought the rights to Marvel, I have a feeling greed is going to take over and, consequently, more stories are going to be made into television shows that may not necessarily deserve to. Marvel is allegedly not only planning a show centered on Agent Carter from CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER, but they are also apparently planning several other shows. I'm sure when the shows hit the tube, they'll be successful and popular, but that's just the beginning. 

FOX is set to make GOTHAM, a show that centers around the origins of James Gordon and a young Bruce Wayne. NBC picked up the pilot for Constantine. THE CW is planning a Wonder Woman television show, as well as giving The Flash his own spinoff series, after being introduced in THE ARROW on the same channel. Netflix is wanting to create four whole shows based on Daredevil, Luke Cage, Iron Fist and Jessica Jones, which will eventually accumulate into a mini-series of The Defenders. That's kind of exhausting. With THE ARROW and AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. being the frontrunners at the moment, let's hope the quality of these future productions match the former rather than the latter. AGENTS OF S.H.I.E.L.D. isn't getting the best reviews from fans or critics, unfortunately, and hopefully these new shows don't follow suit. If we're having to get so many superhero themed television shows, let's at least make them good. 

Shows based off of graphic novels like THE WALKING DEAD have a lot of power in the fact that they're darker, lesser known works, as opposed to Wonder Woman or Batman. While there is still lore and characters that don't exactly follow the graphic novel, the show has done a good job of balancing that out and keeping casual viewers and fans of the books happy and entertained. THE STRAIN, FX's new graphic novel inspired show with Guillermo del Toro at the helm, looks like it could be another brilliantly told horror story. Television is a lot darker and realistic these days, so seeing more intense stories and characters like Daredevil could be perfect. Let's just hope NBC doesn't completely neuter Constantine.

News of FOX trying out a small screen version of A LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN is actually something I think could work. The film version was pretty darn bad and given the rich literary characters and possible story arcs and avenues, this could make for a really interesting show and a wonderful second chance to do these characters and story justice. Another flop that could turn out to be great would be a WATCHMEN mini-series. If you're like me and was disappointed by the movie, think of the possibilities of a show allowing us to focus more on the characters, flesh them out and not rush things as well as spending some extra time with their backstories, etc. It would obviously take a while for this to happen (hell, bringing it to the big screen took nearly two decades), but if they're reaching for stories to bring to television, I feel like those could work tremendously. 

One glimmering ray of hope, though, comes from the fact that television holds such a high standard these days. After BREAKING BAD, MAD MEN, HOUSE OF CARDS, GAME OF THRONES and the latest TRUE DETECTIVE, there's some damn good television out there, which means to hold off their competition, these shows would need to be great in order to hold the attention of their viewers. There's also non-comic book fans out there to consider, so the gimmick of being an adaptation could only carry them so far. They would need to rely on the quality to have people coming back week after week. 

So, C'mon, Hollywood! Please be careful and don't go overboard when it comes to the superhero television shows. Look, I'm all for using comics, graphic novels or any other form of literature for creative visual purposes, but having dozens of superhero shows on simultaneously might get a little numbing. Everyone has their favorites and some have been unfairly left out of the spotlight, but with the massive amount that's coming at us, it feels somewhat like overkill. Here's to hoping that fantastic, wondrous spectacle revolving around these stories remains and that superheroes never lose any of their super. 

Extra Tidbit: Out of all these potential television shows, which one has you most excited? What about the most skeptical?
Source: JoBlo

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