DC currently has the highest grossing movie in the world, with the gritty stand-alone spin-off Joker raking in the riches, despite fears that it would inspire copycat violence. But their films don’t always work out. For every Aquaman or Wonder Woman there’s a Justice League or a Suicide Squad, the latter which made money despite the problems both off-screen and on. Their TV shows, though, tend to have a better track record. And Kevin Smith — the biggest comic book superfan there is — has a theory about that.
Smith was speaking to Entertainment Weekly ahead of Jay and Silent Bob Reboot’s release, and the conversation inevitably turned towards superhero fare. And he said he knew why DC TV does better than DC cinema.
“It has nothing to do with the characters themselves or how they interact with the social consciousness or whether they’re relevant still or not,” Smith said. “A good writer will turn anything into a watchable concept. Some of the DC movies have had a hard time catching an audience. The stories haven’t been as satisfying. When you’re doing a DC television show, such as Supergirl or The Flash, you don’t have two hours to tell your story. You have 22 hours to tell a long story… They get more time there.”
Full disclosure: Smith has directed episodes of Supergirl, and he made sure to gush about its star. “Melissa Benoist is the absolute f*cking s*it,” he said. “Like, grace under pressure. They truss that girl up and sail her up in the sky on hooks and s*it like that… but she never complains.”