Never before has the realm of comic book superheroes enjoyed such success. DC Comic’s Superman and Batman to many were the epitome of comic superheroes. Both had long histories, Superman was the star of a weekly radio serial, and both comics had early television spin-offs.
However the true comic superheroes were still to come in the form of the Marvel characters. Marvel comics presented the characters as more human than superhuman and storylines often pointed out that the stars were reluctant heroes at best. As a result of the storytelling and extraordinary dialogue Marvel’s characters were more “real” and believable.
Marvel took a cue from the early theatre serials and continued the storyline from issue to issue and effectively perfecting the art of cross-promoting characters and spinoffs.
While the Batman and Superman franchises are still strong and show no signs of going away, it is Marvel that sits atop the superhero throne.
The Marvel Universe encompasses TV, Film, Stage, Print, and the merchandise, such as clothing and toys in a way that has never before existed in entertainment; all the while staying incredibly faithful to its brand.
One area that is an indicator of a genre or franchise’s popularity is the video game arena. Here once character has true iconic status; Spider-man. While Superman’s first video game appearance was in 1978, four years before the first Spider-man game hit the market, the Man of Steel has appeared in 14 games; The Amazing Spider-man’s total is 37.
The first in the long running series was “Spider-man” in 1982 for the Atari 2600 and featured the equally iconic villain, the Hobgoblin. The franchise went one to include virtually every game console and operating system. There was even a text based game in 1984 (Questprobe: Spider-Man) and an MS-DOS game in 1989.
Marvel and its stable of characters have also proven that comic fans consist of far more than teen-aged boys. For the past decade as slot machines have migrated to video rather than mechanical displays, themes for the games are often taken from pop culture. One of the most popular themes and on that draws a great number of players is, you guessed it, those based on Marvel characters. The Spider-Man Attack of the Green Goblin is one of the stars in the line of online slots developed by Playtech. The game features an amazing number of features and highlights events and characters from all of Spider-man’s history. The graphics are spectacular and the game play is fun, and rewarding.