The DC Films Universe has managed to gain some sort of success even after the mixed reviews that most of the movies got in the past. But, still, if we compare it to the MCU, it is not yet in the league of the big-hitting franchise on the box office even after being quite successful itself. Throughout the world, fans are divided between Marvel and DC, and by the last year’s Box Office Numbers, it has been proved that there are indeed more Marvel fans than DC even though people tend to love both these big comic houses.
Fans and critics have plenty of theories to point out that why DC has not managed to break through as well as Marvel has, and now a new scientific research study reveals why Marvel movies are performing better in theatres and are more successful in the longer run than DC movies.
A test was conducted on a large scale by Automated market research tech provider ZappiStore, as they checked the viewer’s emotional engagement with several Marvel and DC movie trailers using facial coding and emotional recognition technology which is called Affectiva, and here’s how this system works. It was revealed that Affectiva has the ability to measure moment to moment expressions and emotions via webcam, so as the viewers watch the trailers of the upcoming movies, the results display on a dashboard (ADWEEK).
Even though it is just bound to the trailers, ZappiStore is still able to gain a hefty load of information from this process. Affectiva highlights the aspects of the trailers that resonates more with the fans, the parts that fans relate more to, and this painted a crystal clear picture of the two maverick properties in front of us. The DC trailers got a more positive response from the moments in the trailers that were big on big action and great special effects but not that much when the core characters of the movies were present.
On the other hand, the results were totally opposite with the Marvel trailers. The viewers responded very strongly to sections which had the Superheroes themselves, and they also reacted positively to the humorous moments present in the trailer which were more engaging for them, as they were able to relate more to these sections, creating a high deal of emotional attachment.
For example, if we consider the Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 trailers, the study found 78% of viewers as “lovers” of the trailer, which means that a great song choice and funny character moments were the biggest reasons for this. After that, Captain America Civil War trailer has a 75% score on this as it also had big character moments involved. Comparing it with DC, the first ranked film on the list was Justice League with a 71% score as it also had the character moments absolutely right and Batman V Superman trailer had a 60% because it was much bigger on the action and special effects.
So, to summarise it, fans engage more to the music, the humor and the characters, and this effect is long-term, whereas the effect of big CGI scenes and action seems to last a little shorter.
This makes a lot of sense as all three Marvel movies that came out last year did focus on the characters pretty well and made huge bucks on the box office. Wonder Woman had a similar reaction and almost similar earnings as it also focused more on the core characters whereas Justice League even after being a step in the right direction, getting all the characters right tried to do big on the action and CGI, and failed to break the box office with big bucks.
Here is what the research architect of Zappistore mentioned about the study of this process:
“We were surprised to see, across all trailers tested, that the emotional response was lower than expected for set pieces and special effects, particularly in the genre we were looking at. The results indicate the way DC can reboot and change characters across trilogies or between TV to film might be having a detrimental effect on how well the public connects with those characters.”
Well DC as just one movie coming out this year which will be Aquaman and Marvel has 3 big movies coming out with a huge hype train of fans, Black Panther, Avengers Infinity War and Ant-Man and the Wasp.