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Top 5 Comic Book Movies Of 2013

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2013 was a banner year for the now all-too-common comic book or graphic novel-based movie. Between live action epics, stunning animation, and jaw-dropping announcements for 2014, it was one of the more super-heroic movie years in recent memory.

Click the arrows to keep reading our list of the top 5 comic book movies of 2013.

Warning: Spoilers ahead.

5. Thor: The Dark World

 

Can we please just hurry up and get a Loki movie, already?
Can we please just hurry up and get a Loki movie, already?

Why was it so good?

Thor: The Dark World was everything that a post-Avengers sequel should be; epic battles, teases to the 2nd wave of the Marvel cinematic universe, and twists and turns galore. They killed off some important characters, humanized a god, and opened the door (at the very end) for a greater and more sinister role for everyone’s favorite Asgardian usurper, Loki. I have never been a “Thor guy,” but the way Marvel is handling the Norse powerhouse, I’m giving serious thought to becoming one.

Issues?

Where the hell was S.H.I.E.L.D. or, to a lesser extent, the Avengers? After the whole “battle for New York” thing, wouldn’t it be safe to assume that anytime something from another plane of existence shows up on earth it would be a good time for the Avengers to assemble? I mean, Thor handled his business with his trusty sidekick Natalie Portman, but even Hawkeye could have expedited the process of banishing the invading elves before too much of Europe was destroyed. Just saying.

4. Iron Man 3

 

Finally, the Tony Stark movie we deserve.
Finally, the Tony Stark movie we deserve.

Why was it so good?

It’s unfair to truly call this an Iron Man sequel because, in all reality, it’s a movie about Tony Stark. Finally, we get a grander taste of the emotionally damaged, complex animal that Tony Stark has evolved into since the New York incident. Honestly, I imagined this movie had Spider-Man 3 written all over it when I heard the abomination of a plot twist used for the Mandarin, but I was on the edge of my seat the whole movie and enjoying every moment. Oh, and the post credit sequence did little for setting up Avengers 2, but it was hilariously awesome.

Issues?

Oh, yes. Oh my, yes. This was far from a perfect movie but NOT because of what was there, but more of what WAS NOT. Iron Man 3 was another example of me screaming internally (and externally after a few beers for that matter) of “where the f**k is S.H.I.E.L.D”??? The president, as well as the entirety of the United States was under constant terrorist threat – isn’t this the kind of thing S.H.I.E.L.D. does? I get that the movie was set at Christmas (making this an AMAZING Christmas movie, I should add) but it’s hard to believe that the United State’s all powerful guardian agency all took the holidays off. How about Captain America? Isn’t “president peril” in his job description? Did everyone fly to Maui following the New York battle except for Tony Stark and Thor?

3. Justice League: Flashpoint Paradox

 

You had me at Kevin Conroy.
You had me at Kevin Conroy.

Why was it so good?

What wasn’t to like? As a HUGE fan of any DC animation from the last 2o years, JLA:FPP was the Justice League animated movie I’ve been dying for. With returns from my favorite voice actors and cameos galore, FPP delivered in both perfect story execution and killer visuals. The story is a little hard to explain but it involves a rift in the space-time continuum resulting in an alternate reality (something DC loves) where the JLA doesn’t exist. The plot, executed by Professor Zoom (I love me some Flash bad guys) sets the stage for a cinema-quality conclusion and a really bitchin’ Barry Allen story (which I’ve been waiting forever for).

Issues?

If I had to nitpick, and I technically don’t have to, the only issue is there were too many cool cameos. “How is that possible if the cameos were cool, you idiot?”,  you may be asking. Well, the story involves alternate realities and a ton of sub-plots, so all the cool cameos actually make it a tad more confusing than it needs to be. A second watch (which is highly suggested) makes everything all better.

2. The Dark Knight Returns: Part 2

 

There's a joke here, somewhere.
There’s a joke here, somewhere.

Why was it so good?

DK2, more commonly known as The Dark Knight Strikes Again, is one of the most interesting  Elseworld’s stories of all time, and from my experience, it’s usually a love-or-hate kind of thing. The animated version of Frank Miller’s polarizing classic is perfect from start to finish. The unique twist on both Batman and Joker are as iconic as they are different. The shining moment of both the filmic translation as well as the graphic novel has always the part where Batman beats Superman and has the balls to let the big guy know it. This moment was perfect on screen and really hit home the fact that I need to watch this – and its predecessor, The Dark Knight Returns – at least once a month.

Issues?

I don’t care if it’s Elseworlds or not, Mark Hamill needs to voice the Joker.

1. Man Of Steel

 

I FINALLY believed a man could fly
I FINALLY believed a man could fly

Why was it so good?

Has there ever been a director as polarizing as Zach Snyder? He seems to tear a rift in the comic book mainstream any time his name is attached to a project. Much like the aforementioned DK2, Snyder’s comic book renditions have fallen into the love or hate column for most. I happen to LOVE what he does to the DCU. He gave life to the unfilmable (Watchmen), perfectly captured the grand scale of the 300 Spartans (300), and most recently put a much-needed spin on an American classic: Superman.

Man Of Steel is the perfect twist on a time-tested tale. After years of the same rehashed formulas, we got a modern Superman as well as characters who were far from one-dimensional. FINALLY, Lois Lane wasn’t an idiot who didn’t recognize her lover with his glasses on. FINALLY, we had some depth and a fresh treatment of the destruction of Krypton. FINALLY, a Superman movie that delivers and fires on all cylinders. Man Of Steel is to Superman what Batman Begins is to Batman, and I hope (wait for it…) it’s just the beginning of more good things to come.

Issues?

I have three main issues with Man Of Steel:

1. How the hell do some people hate this movie? Seriously, did you watch Superman Returns or Superman 4 by mistake?

2. Why in the hell couldn’t the cards fall together and have this set as a part of Nolan’s incredibly crafted Batman universe? I am cautious of the future.

3. This movie serves as the herald of Gal Gadot.

Share your thoughts on this list in the comment section below!

The Author

Ricky Laprade

Ricky Laprade

Comic Book/ Graphic Novel & Screenwriter. Movie Director. Former writer @ Cakemix Studios (@HasbroNews). Contributing Writer @Agentsofgeek. Batman, AD&D & Dark Tower fanatic. Phenomenal Mrs. PacMan player.

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