It’s hard to recall a time when comic book movies didn’t dominate the cinematic landscape. Outside of the odd success – like Richard Donner’s Superman or Tim Burton’s Batman – they use to be embarrassing failures, like Dolph Lundgren’s Punisher, Spawn or that Fantastic Four film they didn’t even bother releasing.
Times have obviously changed, and it would be considered abnormal not to have a comic book movie on the release schedules. The studio process being what it is often means these comics have their harsher edges trimmed off, including bloody violence or sex, before they ever reach the screen. There’s a reason we’ll never see a boozy version of Tony Stark or The Joker slicing off his own face.
Sometimes the studios make profound changes to the source material that upsets the fanbase, but sometimes – just sometimes – these changes are actually for the better. They can add a deeper meaning to the story, or replace a silly plot element with something better.
Let’s examine a few controversial changes that actually worked out for the best.