Every hero gets a movie. We’ve talked about it on the site very often. The reason we do is because everybody seems to love superheroes lately, and for good reason. Movies like Iron Man and The Dark Knight have ushered in countless new fans to the genre and the studios capitalized effortlessly. Our summers are full of Avengers and Men of Steel taking the screen, and when it’s not blockbuster season, fans go crazy for shows like Daredevil and Arrow. It feels like there’s a new hero getting their fifteen minutes of fame every other week.
But with all the new heroes stealing the spotlight, what happens to the heroes that the studios miss with? Daredevil was lucky enough to be resurrected on Netflix, but chances are we’ll never see Ghost Rider ever again. Here are 12 heroes that got a movie, but not the movie they deserved.
12. The Hulk
It’s a shame that movies can’t get the Hulk to work. Over and over, Bruce Banner proves to work on television, from The Incredible Hulk in the ‘80s to today where Hulk can be found in any kid show based on the Marvel Universe. So why has it been such a challenge for the studio to create a stand-alone Hulk movie? The 2003 Eric Bana-starring Hulk was a massive failure partly due to the never-ending run time and the overall lack of action.
Marvel rebooted the green man in 2008, releasing The Incredible Hulk with Edward Norton, but the movie gained little traction and has since fallen into the category of “one of the other prequels to The Avengers.” Since then, Mark Ruffalo has taken the mantle of the Hulk and has done a fine job in both Avengers movies, which is great. However, it leaves millions of Hulk fans wanting more. Perhaps another stand alone movie someday? We can only hope.
11. Kitty Pryde
Ellen Page was a great casting choice to play the young X-Man (X-Girl?), but with so much going on around her, Shadowcat just got lost in the shuffle. Now a girl who has the ability to walk through walls may not scream “blockbuster movie” but Kitty brings so much more to the table than that. She has been the leader of the X-Men, and at one point becomes the first mutant president of the United States. Her powers mean that whenever she chooses, she’s able to phase through anything. A wall, a fist, a bullet, a fire – anything. A stand-alone movie might be tough, but Kitty is a tough girl. Seriously, anyone who regularly sleeps with Colossus has to be one of the toughest people in the Marvel Universe…
Constantine is no hero, he’s a total jerk. Throughout his run in comics, Constantine has worked hard to screw over practically everyone who associates himself with him. He’s a cunning, clever, sarcastic con man who’s willing to do the right thing, until it is no longer convenient for him. All of this makes him a very difficult character to root for. This explains why his TV show wasn’t a success and why Keanu Reeves wasn’t able to capture the nuances of the occult detective. If a movie were to come out and paint the character as the anti-hero that he is, fans would be on board 100%. For now, we hope to see Matt Ryan appear as Constantine on Arrow again, however unlikely that is.
I’ll hold off putting her higher until after season 2 of Daredevil, but either way Elektra deserves better than the Jennifer Garner flop. The sai wielding assassin has been a standout in Marvel lore for years. However, when giving her a movie, the writers decided to throw out any source material and make her into some time traveling knife thrower. The fight scenes were ludicrous and the dialogue was awful. Worst of all is that this movie set all super-women back years. We are seeing the ramifications finally come to an end with Wonder Woman coming out in 2017, which is the first stand-alone female superhero movie since 2005, when Elektra was released.
Bane is well known as the hulking and “roided out” luchador from the Batman universe, so how come every movie rendition of him is so far off? In the comics, he is one of the more brilliant military strategists and one of the only men to have ever “broken the Bat.” Yet Batman and Robin pinned him as a zombie follower for Poison Ivy to use, and The Dark Knight Rises made him a Eastern-European puppet for Talia al-Ghul. Instead of getting comic book Bane, a man who taught himself Latin and biochemistry while in prison, we get two very loosely related bodyguards who share the character’s name.
How about we get the actual Gambit? The thieves’ guild Gambit who’ll steal anything for the right price. What we’ve been treated to so far was Gambit in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, a dude who likes to do gymnastics. Gambit is one of the most intriguing X-Men for both his kick-ass power to manipulate energy, and his time spent as a criminal. If the care that went into Deadpool goes into the upcoming Channing Tatum Gambit movie, then fans will be content. Until then, X-Men Origins: Wolverine needs to answer for what it did to Remy LeBeau.
Rorschach stands for the entire Watchmen “team.” It’s too bad that Zack Snyder couldn’t take one of the most critically acclaimed graphic novels and make a good movie. Don’t get me wrong, the movie has its moments, but they mostly consist of epic fight scenes in slo-mo (thanks Snyder!). Rorschach is the best example of differences between the book and the movie. Instead of exploring the one traumatic moment that Rorschach graces the readers with, Snyder decides to fast-forward the scene and shows little of the depths that Rorschach sinks to while torturing a criminal. Why? We have no idea.
5. Fantastic Four
Well, you had to assume that this was coming. Every rendition of The Fantastic Four has turned into a momentous failure. As far back as 1994, movies based on the hero team have failed time and time again. And the reason… Well, they all just suck. The Fantastic Four is similar to your weird cousin at Thanksgiving. You love him or her because they’re family, but you’d never choose to talk to them. The four are an important part of the Marvel Universe, but can’t seem to keep any one’s attention for 2 hours straight. What we deserve is a good Fantastic Four movie wiping away all the bad that Fox has done.
4. The Spirit
A badass vigilante reminiscent of Batman? Sign me up. Well, on second thought, The Spirit needs a lot of work before moving back onto the big screen. Where The Spirit movie failed is obvious: bad acting, rushed script, lame jokes, and a seemingly purposeful attempt to make audiences ask “what the hell is going on.” What The Spirit could be is a supernatural film noir that focuses on the darker aspects of the hero’s immortality and loss of connection with the human race. The Spirit is a detective, neither alive nor dead, who works to protect the city he lives in. What we got in Frank Miller’s depiction was a horny parkour expert with very little gray area to explore.
Man of Steel really begs the question, can there be a good Superman movie? In this modern age of superhero movies, fans want one of two movies. They either want a long epic fight scene starring a character that uses their heart and willpower to overcome any obstacle (like Captain America), or they want a movie starring a hero who is dark and brooding (like Batman). Superman falls somewhere outside of both. He’s too strong for anyone to pose a real threat to him so he has no reason to use ‘heart’ nor does he have any reason to brood. Watching Superman is kind of like watching Dora the Explorer; no matter how much trouble the character can get into, they will always be unscratched at the end. Superman can be an interesting character, but rarely is. So unless someone is willing to show him as the villain, we will be stuck with the Boy Scout in every Justice League movie currently being made.
2. Green Lantern
Speaking of will power… The Ryan Reynolds Green Lantern movie was a fantastic idea. Besides that Mr. Reynolds looks strikingly like a modern day Hal Jordan, he was one of the biggest stars in the world at the time. Superhero movies were so popular (good or bad) that the studios were cranking out heroes so fast that they didn’t have time to write a decent script. Green Lantern was all show and no work. Sure, the animated scenery was pretty, but the Green Lantern Corp. is about more than shiny rings and aliens. Luckily Green Lantern is being rebooted and we may see the movie that should have been made back then.
The last time we got Robin in a live-action movie was in 1997, the classic Batman and Robin. Movie fans now may only recognize the Boy Wonder as the douchey, pun spewing, overgrown child that we were treated to then, not realizing that Robin actually contains some of the greatest character arcs in comic book history. Whether it’s Dick Grayson’s ascent to Nightwing, Jason Todd’s untimely murder at the hands of The Joker, or even Damian Wayne’s redemption story, Hollywood may have missed the boat.
We already know that Jason Todd is dead in Batman v Superman, so unless aging Batman decided to take in Tim Drake, don’t expect any side kick for the bat in any Affleck rendition. And to whoever believes that Joseph Gordon-Levitt was supposed to be Robin in The Dark Knight Rises, Robin is a kid, Gordon-Levitt is only 7 years younger than Christian Bale.