I watched Justice League last month to see what all the DC/Marvel movie hoo-ra was about. For those of you not plugged into superhero-internet spasms, DC has all the truly Golden Age iconic heroes—Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman—and is flailing at the box office, while Marvel has less universally known heroes—Ironman, Captain America, the Hulk—and is making money so fast it’s giving the industry a headrush. I don’t care about box office, I care about story, but I do think there’s often (not always) a strong correlation between good story and good profit, so I decided to do a compare-and-contrast, to look at Marvel’s big superhero team-up, The Avengers (2012) and DC’s team-up, Justice League (2017), to see why DC keeps falling on its face and Marvel usually (not always) kicks box office butt.
My thesis going in: It’s the story, stupid. My thesis after watching Justice League twice last month and The Avengers at least half a dozen times in the past six years: They’re the same damn plot, so it’s something beyond that.
Uh, that would be the writing.
I had lunch with my agent, Meg, Saturday, just because we hadn’t seen each other in such a long time. Also, I love Meg. We caught up about kids and general social stuff and then got started on TV. Like me, she is cordless, getting her moving pictures from Amazon and Netflix and other streamers, and we got started on that “Have you seen this?” thing you do when you talk about TV. What really surprised me is that I hadn’t seen any of hers and she hadn’t seen any of mine. I thought we were soulmates. What happened? Continue reading
I know, I know, there’s Sayers and Christie and Tey, and Marsh, and my fave, Allingham, all of whom were better known as Golden Age goddesses of wrongful death, but Georgette Heyer will always hold a special place in my heart. She and Dorothy Parker were my muses when I started writing; I wanted to be the next Them. And she wrote marvelous (for the most part) mysteries about clever young people before and after WWII, good solid plots full of characters who you either fell in love with or wanted to strangle yourself.