May 10 2012

Which Tend to Be Better: Superhero Team Movies or Lone Superhero Movies?

Published by at 7:25 am under Comic Book Movies

Since 2000, movies with 2+ superheroes have averaged 59% on Rotten Tomatoes, whereas movies with a lone superhero have averaged 50%.

 

Lone Superheroes

 Company

Average RT Rating

 Marvel

54

 DC

48

 Other

43

 Overall

50

 

Superhero Teams

 Company

Average RT Rating

 Marvel

64

 DC

41

 Other

58

 Overall

59

 

Below, I listed all of the superhero team movies and lone superhero movies which went into these ratings.

 

LIST OF MOVIES WITH ONLY ONE SUPERHERO

Marvel

 Movie Title

RT Rating

 Spider-Man 2

94

 Iron Man

93

 Spider-Man

90

 Captain America: The First Avenger

79

 Thor

77

 Incredible Hulk

66

 The Hulk

62

 Daredevil

44

 X-Men Origins: Wolverine

37

 The Punisher

30

 The Punisher: War Zone

27

 Ghost Rider

26

 Ghost Rider 2: Spirit of Vengeance

14

 Elektra

10

 

DC

 Movie Title

RT Rating

 The Dark Knight

94

 Batman Begins

85

 Superman Returns

76

 V for Vendetta

73

 Constantine

46

 Green Lantern

25

 The Spirit

15

 Jonah Hex

12

 Catwoman

10

 

Other

 Movie Title

RT Rating

 Unbreakable

68

 Astro Boy

49

 Hancock

40

 My Super Ex-Girlfriend

40

 Underdog

16

LIST OF SUPERHERO TEAM MOVIES

Marvel

 Movie Title

RT Rating

 Avengers

93

 X-Men United (X2)

88

 X-Men: First Class

87

 X-Men

82

 Kick-Ass

76

 Iron Man 2

73

 Spider-Man 3

63

 Blade II

59

 X-Men: Last Stand (X3)

57

 Fantastic Four

36

 Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer

26

 Blade: Trinity

26

 

DC

Movie Title

RT Rating

 Watchmen

64

 League of Extraordinary Gentlemen

17

 

Other

 Movie Title

RT Rating

 The Incredibles

97

 Hellboy 2

87

 Chronicle

85

 Hellboy

84

 Sky High

73

 Megamind

73

 Green Hornet

44

 TMNT

34

 GI Joe: Rise of Cobra

34

 Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl

20

 Zoom

3

 

Methodological Notes

  • I only counted movies since 2000 which grossed at least $10 million at the box office and actually had Rotten Tomatoes ratings (Dr. Horrible didn’t).
  • My crude measure for whether a movie counted as a superhero movie was whether its Wikipedia article used the word “superhero.”  Foolproof, I know. 🙂

13 responses so far

13 Responses to “Which Tend to Be Better: Superhero Team Movies or Lone Superhero Movies?”

  1. B. McKenzieon 10 May 2012 at 8:52 am

    Minor methodological point: I listed movies with more than one superpowered protagonist as superhero team movies even if the characters weren’t really on a team–Mastermind, for example.



    Also, when I update the listings, I should probably look harder for the movies from companies besides Marvel and DC–I probably missed some.

  2. Carl Shinyamaon 10 May 2012 at 2:22 pm

    Prince Nuada in Hellboy 2 is my favorite movie supervillain. His character was extremely well-written in my opinion.

    In fact, I think he was the most interesting character in the entire movie.

  3. Goaton 10 May 2012 at 4:19 pm

    I loved the Avengers but my friends and I agreed that Thor works better in his own movie. I thought he was good in Avengers but he has more to do in his own movies. Which is why I think the villain chosen was Loki. But still, Thor just didn’t seem all the way there. Does that make sense?

  4. MisterEon 10 May 2012 at 5:14 pm

    You forgot the original Superman movies, Blade, and some others. Are you also listing animated films, or just live-action?

  5. Carl Shinyamaon 10 May 2012 at 8:24 pm

    MisterE, he’s talking about movies since 2000, so no, he didn’t forget the SUperman movies.

    Also, he listed the Incredibles, which is an animated movie.

  6. Comicbookguy117on 10 May 2012 at 9:02 pm

    Well, Dc’s got some great animated movies. My favorite for example is Crisis on Two Earths. I LOVE that movie. It’s awesome!

  7. B. McKenzieon 10 May 2012 at 10:26 pm

    I went with only movies since 2000 because I thought they were more applicable to movies being currently made.



    “Are you also listing animated films, or just live-action?” I included every superhero movie I could find that had done more than $10 million in ticket sales. Would it be applicable/helpful to include straight-to-DVD and limited release movies as well?

  8. MisterEon 11 May 2012 at 7:12 am

    Ah, I didn’t see the since 2000 bit. In that case, Blade 2 and Blade: Trinity were made post 2000. Zoom, and RED (technically based off a hero comic) should also be included. Since you included Astro Boy and Sky High, The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl should also be added, along with Underdog.

    “I included every superhero movie I could find that had done more than $10 million in ticket sales. Would it be applicable/helpful to include straight-to-DVD and limited release movies as well?” That’s a possibility. I was asking because the Ultimate Avengers animated films, in my opinion, were well-done, and they received good reviews. Though, if you include those you’d have to include all direct-to-video films, and since there are so many, that may cloud the results. However, the TMNT film was in theaters, and I’d describe the Turtles as superheroes.

  9. B. McKenzieon 11 May 2012 at 7:55 am

    Okay, I’ve added Chronicle, Kick-Ass, Zoom, Blade II and Blade: Trinity, Sharkboy and Lavagirl, Zoom, TMNT, Underdog and GI Joe. Dr. Horrible didn’t have any Rotten Tomatoes ratings. I opted not to add RED because it doesn’t feel like a superhero movie to me and because its Wikipedia page doesn’t use the word “superhero.”

    The main result of these changes is that the superhero team movies got worse on average, particularly in the Other Companies category.

  10. ehrichon 11 May 2012 at 8:53 am

    TMNT are not superhero’s , there mutant ninja turtles in a half shell,(sorry had to do it) don’t think they have superpowers just ninja skills.

    Underdog is questionable. but i just never liked him.

    GI Joe are hero’s, not really superhero’s none of them have any real super powers, the closest thing is like a tony stark/iron man kinda thing, but nothing like Thor or Capt. America. the Joe’s powers are 100% from training and technology. so i say… hero’s yes, superhero’s not really **

    R.E.D is the same as the Joe’s only defiantly no way they can be superhero’s, just plain hero’s

    ** only real super power the Joe’s have is bringing back people from the dead, lol.

  11. MisterEon 11 May 2012 at 10:51 am

    @ehrich: I think you’re confusing superheroes with people who have superpowers. The two are not necessarily synonymous. TMNT are indeed superheroes; they have incredible abilities, they’re anthropomorphic turtles, they fight crime, and frequently prevent world domination at the hands of supervillains. Same as the Joes, who, in essence are no different than Batman – and I guarantee you’d call Batman a superhero. And Underdog is even defined as a superhero.

    @Mac: I can understand not using RED, I just thought I’d list it since it’s technically based off a comic featuring heroes.

  12. ehrichon 11 May 2012 at 1:09 pm

    @MisterE: actually i think your right, guess I’ve just never really tried to define the two before. when i was younger i didn’t really care they were just fun to read/watch.

    but now i think its all just too bland and as an adult i just didn’t really try to define the two. so i think that might have been my first attempt, lol.

    but what is it that actually make a reg hero in to a superhero in the first place? what is the defining moment when a guy rescuing a lady from a mugger stops being just a hero, and becomes a superhero?

    was it the moment he said ” that’s not right I’m going to stop it!” ?

    does the world have to recognize him for the act of valor to achieve the status of “superhero”?

    what is the defining moment?

    was it the moment when he witnessed his parents murdered like Batman?
    was it the moment he crash landed on earth and taken in like Superman?
    was it the moment he escaped his captures like Tony Stark/Ironman?

    what is it?

  13. B. McKenzieon 11 May 2012 at 6:24 pm

    I have an article about What Makes a Superhero Story but for this I mostly relied on whether Wikipedia listed the characters as superheroes.

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