“Hear me and rejoice. You have had the privilege of being saved by The Great Titan. You may think this is suffering. No. It is salvation. Smile, for even in death you have become children of Thanos.” – Ebony Maw in Avengers: Infinity War
A few months ago, I took my daughter to see Aquaman.
I love superhero movies.
But lately I’ve felt a clear preference for ones produced by Marvel (e.g. The Avengers, Thor, Ironman, Black Panther) vs. the other of the big two comic book legacies: DC Comics.
Aquaman is a DC Comics character.
The movie was OK, but I kept thinking, “why is this just not as good as a Marvel movie?”
Fast-forward a few days. We hit the play button on Avengers: Infinity War which had recently come on Netflix. I knew the second I heard the first few lines of script what the difference is…
Marvel has superior writing.
(Quoted above are those opening sentences, which in the scene are pronounced magnanimously by the sorcerer Ebony Maw, as he steps over bodies in the wake of Thanos’ attack.)
It’s not even that DC’s writing is bad. It’s not. But Marvel’s writers have that slight edge that, when repeated throughout the film delivers a better experience. The jokes are just that little bit funnier. The story lines, just that little bit more imaginative. The dialogue, just that little bit cleverer.
These are big, blockbuster movies.
And even though, in my opinion, anyone who enters the theater is under an implied contract to suspend disbelief, the challenge for the writers (especially over several movies) is to keep one-upping themselves without it getting too…well, wacky.
One way Marvel’s writers get around this is by poking fun at the genre, as seen in this brief exchange:
Dr. Strange: “If Thanos gets his hands on all six Infinity Stones he’ll be able to wipe out life on a scale hitherto undreamt of.”
Tony Stark: “Did you seriously just say ‘hitherto undreamt of’?”
It lets the tension out of the big scenes and keeps the audience on side with the characters.
Let’s go to the scorecard.
Here’s Marvel vs. DC by the numbers (domestically):
*Average gross revenue per release: $247M to $224M in favor of Marvel (keep in mind Marvel has produced almost double the number of movies DC has. Thus, higher output AND higher average.)
*Percentage of releases grossing over $200M: %58 to %48, again in favor of Marvel
*Opening weekends: Marvel, 6 of the top 15 (and 3 of the top 6), DC, 5 of the top 15 (highest at #5)
*Critically, Marvel movies tend to have many more favourable reviews than DC movies (with the exception of the three Batman movies directed by Christopher Nolan, those are truly special)
All this is despite DC having, arguably, more iconic characters – Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman.
Internationally, Marvel is more popular as well.
What does this all mean for you?
If you had even slightly higher-converting words throughout your business (in your email newsletters, in your print ads, on your social media, in selling situations, in the scripts you give your employees – you do give them scripts, don’t you?) not only would you be more popular in your niche, but you’d steal market share faster than a bandit in a Bugatti.
That’s where I come in.
If you’d like to find out how email helps you convert more leads and sell more to your existing customers, go here to request your stress-free brainstorm call:
Wipe out your competition on a scale hitherto undreamt of.
Then, rest and watch the sun rise on a grateful universe.
P.S. If you have an interest in writing and story-telling, I urge you to study what Marvel’s writers do. I’d start with Thor: Ragnarok, followed by Avengers: Infinity War.