Not all comics should be movies

Members of the Marvel universe chose their sides in Civil War, as they fought one another in a comic book that, like many other comics, should never make its way onto the silver screen no matter the budget or director. | Marvel

When people hear of comic book movies, they automatically go to superheroes or movies like Jonah Hex. This, however, isn’t the case. While superheroes obviously do play a giant role in comic-based movies, graphic novels and non-superhero based comics have played a major role in Hollywood over the past 15 years. Road to Perdition isn’t usually remembered as a comic book movie — but it’s based on a graphic novel of the same name. The classic John Hughes movie Weird Science is also based off of a comic book.

The past few years have brought comic book movies skyrocketing back into public focus, however. Batman kicked it off in the late ’80s, but comic book movies got their second wind when the original Spider-man came into the scene in 2002.

Now it seems that any and every halfway decent graphic novel or comic book character is getting its own movie. There are, however, some things that should not be turned into a live-action affair. Sure, The Dark Knight was excellent, but there hasn’t been a single good Aliens vs. Predators yet, and it’s not for lack of trying. With these mistakes in mind, here are a few 2-D cartoons that should stay that way.

First and foremost is the Sandman series. It deals with a magician who tries to attain immortality by trapping the Grim Reaper in his basement, but instead traps the lord of Dreams. He eventually manages to escape, and goes to Hell to find his tools. The point is, it’s one of the most successful (and creative) comics to come along. It’s only a matter of time before some executive decides to plunder it and make a live action version — but they shouldn’t. It’s not as complex as Watchmen, but it does have too many small details to really make a solid script.

What was done to Watchmen shouldn’t be done again. They took the War and Peace of comic books and turned it into a lackluster movie that was a dumbed-down version of an intricate and well-designed storyline. The same thing would happen with Sandman, except they’d probably cast Keanu Reeves as the main character.

Another series that should never be recreated — and some people will definitely disagree with me here — is Marvel’s epic Civil War spinoff. It involves just about every character from the Marvel universe aligning with either Captain America or Iron Man in a showdown about the government wanting to know the secret identities of every superhero. Don’t get me wrong, it would probably make a killer movie; they would just have to water down the complexity of the storyline to do it, and that just isn’t right. True, it would be a great hit — who doesn’t want to see Iron Man and the Hulk duke it out? But that doesn’t mean that taking something that’s the Vequivalent of a steak and turning it into a hamburger is right.

Although I only presented two comics, there have to be plenty of others out there that I’ve missed. I still don’t think that The Green Hornet should be turned into a movie, with or without Seth Rogen. However, it’s too late to stop that; and the odds are, it’ll make a halfway decent movie in the end. But it probably won’t stick to the source material, which means it’s just another in a long line of half-baked Hollywood moneymakers.

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