New Movies – 10 Other Comic Book Movies That Should Get Follow-Up TV Shows
Zack Snyder’s adaptation of Watchmen in 2009 was a wildly successful movie, which is especially impressive considering it was an R-rated superhero film. It is still considered by many to be his best film, and The Watchmen received another adaptation with the HBO series that came out in 2019 that serves as something of a sequel to the original graphic novel (and therefore, to the movie as well).
This naturally leads one to wonder what other movie adaptations of comic books should receive a new life through a television series. There have been countless comic book movies over the years, and not all of them have been part of the MCU or DCEU. So which comic books that have already been movies should get another chance on a smaller screen?
10 Bloodshot, Valiant Comics’ Unkillable Supersoldier
Bloodshot is a character from the Valiant Comics Universe created by Kevin VanHook, Don Perlin, and Bob Layton. The character was originally a mafia hitman named Angelo Mortalli but was later revised as Raymond Garrison. The idea of Bloodshot is that he is a supersoldier who cannot be killed, empowered by nanites in his bloodstream.
Bloodshot received a movie adaptation last year with Vin Diesel in the title role that was to start a Valiant cinematic universe, but television might be a better fit for an interconnected Valiant universe— and it could start with a Bloodshot series before going on to include series featuring the likes of Ninjak, X-O Manowar, Faith/Zephyr, Livewire, and others.
9 Ghost Rider, The Spirit Of Vengeance On A Motorcycle
The Ghost Rider films starring Nicholas Cage weren’t particularly well-liked or successful, but that has nothing to do with the merit of the Marvel character. The Ghost Rider has a long and beloved history in the Marvel Universe, and there is a lot of potential for the character to shine in a television series. The Robbie Reyes version of the Ghost Rider did show up for a while in the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. series, but his time on the show wasn’t particularly long.
The Ghost Rider has had four main hosts over the years: Johnny Blaze, Danny Ketch, Alejandra Jones, and Robbie Reyes— though there have been several spin-offs like the Cosmic Ghost Rider and Ghost Rider 2099. Any one of those four hosts could make for a compelling superhero horror show.
8 Man-Thing, Marvel’s Silent Protector Of The Swamps
Another Marvel Comics character, the Man-Thing is Marvel’s swamp monster (who actually predates the Swamp Thing). His real name was once Ted Salis, but he was transformed by a mixture of a failed Super-Soldier Serum recreation mixed with a mystical deal with a demon. Now, the Man-Thing guards the Nexus of Realities, and those who fear him burn at his touch.
The Man-Thing received an obscure TV movie in the mid-2000s. He could work well with a horror anthology series based around his Everglades lair.
7 Jonah Hex, DC’s Supernatural Cowboy Gunfighter
Jonah Hex also received a reviled movie adaptation, this time starring future-Thanos/Cable actor Josh Brolin alongside Megan Fox. Jonah Hex hasn’t received much love in the comics since then outside of a short-lived All-Star Western run. However, he could deliver a compelling horror western series for DC Comics.
Hex is a former Confederate soldier who abandoned that cause and became a wandering bounty hunter. He had his face scarred and fought several supernatural threats over the years. He even time-traveled a couple of times and even spent some time in our far future.
6 The Empty Man, A Lovecraftian Pandemic Horror
Late last year, The Empty Man by Cullen Bunn and Vanesa R. Del Rey received a movie adaptation. While it received some praise from those who saw it, it didn’t get much attention and many aren’t even aware it exists.
The Empty Man is a chilling horror comic about a psychological virus that spread across the world, causing individuals to commit acts of horrific violence against to one’s self and others. There is also a growing cult devoted to a mysterious entity called the Empty Man. Not only could the core narrative of the comic be adapted, but the show could also expand on other parts of this violent and grim world.
5 The Spirit, Will Eisner’s Legendary Mystery Man
The Spirit is one of the oldest superheroes in existence. He was created by legendary comic creator Will Eisner in 1940. He was a detective named Denny Colt who was seemingly killed and returned as the heroic Spirit to fight crime now that he was believed dead. This could easily be adapted into a noir superhero story built around the Spirit.
The Spirit’s film adaptation was heavily disliked as well but had a surprisingly stacked cast. Gabriel Macht played the Spirit himself, and Samuel L. Jackson played the Spirit’s archnemesis, the Octopus. However, Scarlett Johansson, Eva Mendes, and Sarah Paulson also showed up in this flick.
4 The Phantom, The Masked Man That Predates Superman
The Phantom was created by Lee Falk in 1936, two years before the first appearance of Superman. The Phantom was the “man who could not die,” and he was a masked adventurer and crime-fighter who lived in the fictional African country of Bangalla. The Phantom was a likely inspiration for characters like Superman and Batman. In fact, the Phantom was almost called “The Grey Ghost,” which is the name of the fictional TV character who helped inspire Batman in Batman: The Animated Series.
The Phantom would certainly need some updating and modernizing if brought to television now. He had a 1996 movie starring Billy Zane, and there was even a short-lived series in 2009 starring Ryan Carnes as the Phantom. However, this character has a long enough history that it’s worth another shot.
3 The Crow, A Tale Of Loss, Death, And Vengeance
The Crow famously starred in a 1994 film starring Brandon Lee, George Wincott, and Ernie Hudson. It’s a cult classic and sparked three sequels of varying quality as well as a poorly-received and short-lived TV series. The original film was adapted from the first The Crow graphic novel by James O’Barr. It’s a tale of loss, death, and brutal revenge.
The Crow has continued on in several incarnations, mostly published by IDW these days and with several more Crows than the original Eric Draven. This could easily become an American Horror Story-esque anthology series with a new Crow each season to keep the premise fresh and exciting.
2 Judge Dredd, The Gun-Toting Protector Of Mega-City One
Judge Dredd is the brutal law enforcer of the futuristic dystopian society of Mega-City One. He was created by Pat Mills, John Wagner, and Carlos Ezquerra for 2000 AD in 1976. He has since had two movie adaptations. The first isn’t well-liked and starred Sylvester Stallone. The more recent incarnation was a beloved cult hit starring Karl Urban.
Judge Dredd is begging for a television adaptation that follows the trials and tribulations of the cold and violent Judge as he tries to bring order to Mega-City One.
1 Hellboy, The Demon That Protects You From Things In The Dark
Finally, there is Hellboy. He has had three movies, the first two starring Ron Perlman as Hellboy and the third starring David Harbour. The first two are well-remembered, but the third is a reviled flop. Hellboy, along with his allies in the B.P.R.D, is a fertile ground for an action-horror series that shows our heroes fighting against all manner of supernatural threats.
Hellboy was created by Mike Mignola and has had a long history, both in-universe and in the real world. Hellboy would make for an excellent animated or live-action series, and this hero needs some redemption after that last widely-hated flick.
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New Movies – 10 Other Comic Book Movies That Should Get Follow-Up TV Shows
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