Iconic characters and the stories.
Epic scale. I know it’s difficult to imagine since most people living today are younger than Superman but think about how radical it was that the DCU started in the cold depths of space when Baby Kal was rocketed away from an exploding alien planet. The first DC comic story was cosmic and that is the canvas some of its best stories have been written on. And when I say cosmic I’m not talking about stories set in space but stories that tell grand epics whether set on Oa or in Crime Alley.
ALL-STAR SUPERMAN, CRISIS ON INFINITE EARTHS, THE DARK KNIGHT RETURNS, THE SINESTRO CORPS WAR, and on and on. Epic tales told on an epic scale that not only relate powerful stories but raise the bar on what the medium of comic books and the genre of superheroes is truly capable of.
There isn’t a ONE reason:
I grew up on DC. DC has heroes you look up to but are also flawed and relatable. They can’t be inspirational without being relatable. There’s also something for everybody: Inspiring (superman/the flash), Dark (batman), Wierd (doom patrol), Witty (anything grant morrison writes), Sci-fi (green lantern), Street-level (green arrow), Action (superman/justice league), Mystery (batman/the question), Drama (most books), Romance (most books), humorous (Harley Quinn), and the list goes on. Superman & Batman was big part of childhood and was probably the gateway for me into DC.
Sorry I know I was supposed to say only one thing!
The fantasy elements with such a creative universe and wonderful characters
The depth and tie-ins of the characters/stories with real world supporting information. That really goes for all fiction though.
I like the balance of silly, unique characters, and dark depressing characters.
Depth and tie-ins.
When they paint a picture, they paint it well. Suspend disbelief and follow what’s happening and it’s great. When different characters tell you details how and why Batman is a genius or crazy and then you watch him you can see those details written all over nearly every facet of everything he does it makes him make a lot more sense and that’s the good stuff. That’s what I mean by depth.
When I say the-ins I mean when things overlap and connect to other things in meaningful ways. The simplest examples of this is Easter eggs. When they add a bunch of layers and the right plot devices and the right character combinations it’s awesome to me.
Also they are great at playing with concepts. The multiverse theory that MCU is making popular with the spicy-verse (that dc has already been a master of for yrs) is really a theory. I’ve seen it discussed in non fiction documentaries. Batman’s tech is based on real world stuff and so on. When a lantern dies in space because their ring failed and they start to suffocate but then they freeze 1st or Superman moves tetonic plates to stop an Earthquake or Flash runs around the globe a bunch of times to build momentum it gets the mind going. At least for me. Then I’m not just analyzing the fiction anymore I’m thinking about the psychology or environmental factors that the fiction referenced or both. I like going down a metaphorical “rabbit-hole” like that. It’s fun and interesting.
Also, even though DC and Marvel are both good and they both copy and answer each other it’s obvious who’s leading and who’s following. I’m guessing Marvel has more equivalent characters but I very very very confident that DC was first with many of their originals and then Marvel started making similar knock-offs and somewhere after that DC started returning the favor. DC was around 1st and their characters and concepts are usually older.
The DC characters and universe work on iconic, meta, realist, and fantastical levels all at once. They are modular nuggets of creative expression that have been formed and repeatedly reimagined by some of the most creative writers and artists in our culture, using them as representations of important, entertaining, mundane, and ridiculous ideas. They are, in the most pure form, ideas for the sake of ideas, which are, for my money, at base, the most distinguishingly human creation. No other creative universe comes as close to capturing a legacy of unadulterated humanity as the DC universe.
Growing up it was the only thing me and my dad connected with before he passed away. Now anytime a new show movie etc comes out I watch it feeling ever closer to him
The idea of legacy
How the Legion thought of Superboy as their role model and his work with them made him into the role model they needed
How Grayson became Batman for a while, with Damien as Robin, because he could, after all those years with Bruce.
How Wally West and Kyle Rayner replaced Barry Allan and Hal Jordan on JLA, and the only difference was some youthful wonder as events proceeded.
Supergirl on Justice League Unlimited.
Roy Harper joining the Justice League in Brad Meltzer version and Young Justice, because of his competence, as a triumph over addiction.
Of course, some of these characters are dead now, or brain damaged, or erased from history in the wonderful new DC Universe.
DC is the best for a few reasons…1 is the plot of each comic book-off topic-For example take the newest Batman movie…As of the current actor Ben Affleck is one of the best actors for the Batman series and shows well in Batman Returns(few others I don’t remember)They recreated about 47% of what happened in the first Batman comic to have ever been created…The Batman video games are a bonus and are a extra thing in mind when surfing the turf about if DC is good.-Disclaimer:ALL MOVIES ARE WELL MADE
Gotham City and all its inhabitants. Pure and simple.
It’s what I grew up with and have loved since I was a kid. Sure I did read Marvel but I was never apart of the marry marvel martch. I was a DC kid and now a DC guy who still loves these characters. DC characters have always felt more down to earth than anything to me. With there personality, there life’s out of costume, and even how things come to be I liked better than Marvel. Take for instance Robin…always been a huge fan of him ( Hince the name) but even as a kid I thought…How cool would it be to be Robin. That Batman has taken you under his wing and is training you to do the stuff that he does…teaching you to fight crime and stop injustice where ever it lerks. That you would help the helpless in this world and made sure what ever happened to them would never ever happen again…that’s dope!!! You can’t say that about any of the other brands of comic book company out there. I was born a DC guy and I will die a DC guy…burried with Green Lantern ring on my finger and all
The characters and what they represent. There’s so much depth to them and history.
I always liked that the world tended to see DC heroes as heroes - at least the ones I tend to read. Superman gives people hope. Wonder Woman stands for truth. Central City has a Flash museum. Coast City is the City without Fear. Even Batman gets to work with the police. This isn’t to say that the stories couldn’t be dark (they definitely have) or that the idea of a hero couldn’t be questioned/deconstructed (it definitely has), but more heroes here seemed to be in a positive environment with regards to heroics than my favorite heroes elsewhere.