Monday, April 30, 2012

On superhero storyline reboots

There's something that the comic book industry has that isn't really prevalent anywhere. And no, I'm not talking about the superheroes. Comics books aren't afraid to break continuity and start over. Which I find pretty interesting.

You don't even have to read comic books to know what I'm talking about, just see Batman. Remember all the silly movies from the nineties and how Christopher Nolan took that material and made it dark and gritty for the newer movies? Better yet, did you know that there are plans for yet another Batman reboot in the future? And what about the new Spiderman that's coming out this summer? Or the two different Hulk movies?

And that's only the movies. If you start looking into the cartoon franchises and the source material itself, you'll notice that this is a trend. Comic books are all about rebooting the same characters and the same ideas, but giving them twists.

Which is fun, in a different sort of way. If you had a history with comics and watched the first season of Young Justice, you knew everyone's darkest secrets before they became an issue. You understood why certain characters were paired off and you knew what the future held for some of them. But that anticipation wasn't bad--it was awesome because not everything was the same.

Now, the reasons these reboots exist is for money. The idea is to keep an interested audience without losing what got them interested in the first place. But I guess what I'm wondering is, why don't we ever see this outside of comic book stories? I'm sure that everyone would jump on an alternate universe re-telling of Harry Potter. So why don't writers or filmmakers or video game producers reboot their stories? The profit is there, there are talented writers who would love to play with previous franchises, and the possibilities are infinite.

So what do you guys think? Would you love to see a reboot of your favorite book or tv show, or is that what fanfiction is for? Would you be willing to take your characters from your own writing and create new stories for them? And what about superheroes--why do these reboots work for them, but not anyone else? Tell me what you think in the comments.