I LOVE graphic Novels. I used to collect Batman Graphic Novels and I have a real Batman 'fetish' its fair to say - although its more of a life long love affair. Aside from Batman Graphic Novels I also love Alan Moore's Watchmen, which I discovered when I was 13 years old and it literally BLEW MY MIND. Along with The Dark Knight returns it is still one of my favourite Graphic Novels. In terms of Marvel Graphic Novels, I read the fantastic four, The Wolverine origin and THOR, I also used to buy Amazing Spider-man and x-men comics - I watched a LOT of HULK cartoons. But all in all I am definitely not only a DC girl, but a die hard Batman fan -
Growing up I always saw Iron Man as Marvels answer to Batman. I had seen him in the comics but I didn't like him. I didn't like Tony Stark - I thought he was brazen - and that his ego drove him more than the will to do good. He was a show off and I didn't much care for that. With Batman he was driven by something much darker - it was an obsession and a need to make things right - Not just justice or revenge - it was atonement - survivors guilt - the only way he could live with himself.
I'm not going to lie - I had zero interest in any Marvel characters bar Spider-Man and the X-men in terms of comics. Nothing had really grabbed me - it all seemed a little too innocuous and shallow for me. I wanted to feel my hero's angst, I wanted to struggle along with them. Spider-man being a teenager was always quite vocal about his angst and so I kind of loved him too - plus spidey gives the best banter. Wolverine is also a really complex character. The rest however - was just too - vanilla. I'm not saying that's how it was - I'm saying that's how I perceived it.
Of all the new Marvel and DC movies coming out the one I was LEAST excited about was Captain America - The First Avenger. Goody two shoes captain America - why would I care about him? Also they cast Chris Evans? Really? After that awful fantastic four movie? (That I watched a lot - because I was hungry for superhero movies - I love superheroes) To be fair to Evans he was the best thing about the fantastic four movie - and I have always liked him. I was excited about Green Lantern - that wasn't so great. I was excited about Thor - it was good but - didn't really stand up to repeat watches. I did really enjoy the Christopher Nolan movies - loved them - but still - it wasn't the definitive batman for me - it was great, I watch the dark knight rises all the time - not perfect though, it wasn't MY Batman, it most definitely could be expanded on and improved. I'm possibly one of the few people who didn't spit my dummy out when I heard Ben Affleck was going to play Batman, and I did like his portrayal - I look forward to seeing what else is coming from him.
Going into Captain America the first Avenger I was blind. I know a lot about a lot of characters but he was someone I had read once and decided wasn't for me so I had NO IDEA of his origin or storyline or anything. Firstly I was really impressed with the special effects - little Steve Rogers was so cleverly done - I bought it. I loved Peggy Carter and her chemistry with Steve. I LOVED Steve's innocence and determination to BE GOOD. Also Richard Armitage hello! - the righteousness of Steve Rogers instantly hooked me - its definitely a THING I'm attracted to in a character - to have that absolute certainty that what you are doing is right - well frankly its hot. That's a very Batman thing - admittedly its also an Iron man thing - but I guess its the motivations behind it. I should add at this point that I do like the Iron man movies - I don't love them but I do like them - oh and I LOVE the end credits for Iron man 3. (Also all Captain America movies end credits are brilliant - so props to whoever designed those)
I'm not entirely sure what I saw when I watched the Captain America: The First Avenger - because I think I forgot a lot of the plot. Next came the Winter Soldier - and you know that moment when Steve flips the WS and his mask falls off - and he says Bucky? - WS: Who the hell is Bucky? - I was kind of with him there - WHO THE HELL IS BUCKY? I had pretty much wiped Bucky from my mind. It was explained to me and I still was a bit hazy. I didn't even recognise it as being the same actor.
Since watching Civil War I have a Bucky Shrine around my desk - including a Bobble head Bucky stuck to my monitor. I'm a Goth/Nerd at heart. Moody supervillain with metal arm and emo/angsty from brainwashing ???- hot. I'm now aware the Bucky's origin is completely different in the comics but I have to say - I'm perfectly happy with the MCU version of events - this is probably more to do with the fact that I didn't know the origin story before hand ... I blow a gasket every time they do Batman wrong.
Then came Batman Vs Superman and Civil War - I'm not going to pit the movies against each other - there are plenty of other blogs where you can read that (literally hundreds) - but what I did notice is how similar the characters of Batman and Captain America are. I would say that Captain America is much more like animated Batman (Kevin Conroy) than Ben Affleck's version - but in case you haven't seen any of the animated Batman TV shows or movies it doesn't matter.
Batman has a really strong moral code - but it doesn't necessarily match up with the worlds idea of 'justice' - he KNOWS what is right and ultimately he trusts very few people outside of himself - not even Superman - not really. (this is obviously explored in BVS) Batman is a contingency planner - he thinks every situation through to its end and works out how to stop the bad shit from happening - every step of the way. (This is why he always wins - essentially he is a massive pessimist and meticulous plotter) - Captain America is the same - he doesn't trust the government, he's learnt the hard way that you cant really trust anyone. (In Avengers Assemble he goes and finds the weapons Fury has hidden because he knows he is being lied to) Of course this all really is the crux of the story in Civil War - he KNOWS what's right - he knows his own judgement and morality are more reliable than those of 'men with agendas' - although slightly different this is why Batman never really joins the justice league - he cant be accountable to anyone but himself. This is not to say that neither of them struggle with themselves. Batman is aware that he's not that far off being completely mental (he dresses like a bat ffs) and MCU Captain America (much like bats) struggles to fit in with society. The difference is that batman plays the part of being like everyone else through Bruce Wayne - that's as much his mask as the costume is. Steve Rogers doesn't get that luxury.
Also - I don't buy Iron man's emotional attachment to Roadie in the movies - There is still an obvious imbalance in their relationship - they are not equals - I don't believe iron man puts anyone before himself - even when he flew up into that big hole in the sky in New York (his most noble moment by far) it felt as though it was martyrdom and little else. EVEN on signing the Accords - its to alleviate his conscience and get his girlfriend back (selfish!) Batman and Robin - batman is his mentor, his father and his friend, they respect eachother and they trust each other. Robin is the son batman never had - and ultimiately he is the boy Batman never got to be. Dick Grayson grew up to be Nightwing and remained a trusted and respected friend of Batmans. Without spoiling too much for anyone - A death in the family ripped my heart out. The image of Batman carrying Jason Todd's body out of the debris is as powerful as it gets - apart from that one cover of The Death of Superman of Lois weeping over Supermans broken body which is also heartbreaking. Back to Dick Grayson - everyone remember that moment in Teen titans animated series when Slade Wilson offers to be Robins father - and robin says I ALREADY HAVE A FATHER cue batman music and a flurry of bats (EPIC!!!)
Cap and Bucky - Civil war really pulled me into their story - more than the previous two - although on rewatching the first 2 I see things I missed the first time around because I know so much more now - Half way through the winter soldier they basically tell you the big spoiler for the massive fight at the end of civil war in that big metal place.
Their friendship is passionate, its true and pure. Bucky is only able to find his way back because of Steve - and for Steve - the survivors guilt of watching Bucky fall to his death is gone - but replaced with a much bigger guilt of what he let happen to Bucky after that - he ultimately feels responsible for what has happened to his friend - he gave up too soon - should have fought harder. Much like the guilt facing Batman - knowing that Jason Todd was not killed but captured and tortured by the joker and turned into the Arkham Knight - who then comes after Batman - Batman gets through to Jason though and he eventually becomes the Red Hood - a vigilante. Much like - if all goes to plan - Bucky eventually becomes Captain America.
Cap fights for Bucky - protects him, because of the responsibility he feels for everything his friend went through - he also knows what a good person he is inside because of their relationship growing up - because Bucky would have done the same - because they LOVE each other. Side point - all this give captain america a boyfriend stuff is silly - a friendship that transcends romance is a much rarer thing and therefore more beautiful - I love their relationship and would hate for it to change - although I do find myself perving at some of the fan art depicting them as a couple sometimes.
The biggest difference is that Cap wants friends, he wants to trust people and see the best in them and he would give most people a second chance. He's an optimistic Batman.
Either way as Characters, I love them both. Marvel finally won me over.