I have to go with Marvel. It's the company that got me into comics in the first place, and my loyalty has stood with them. It was kind of tough, because when I've most recently gotten back into comics Blackest Night with Green Lantern and The New 52 were both the biggest selling points for me.
Anyway, for me it just comes down to characters. Both companies have tremendous characters in their respective pantheons, but I enjoy Marvel's just a little more. Add to that I think Marvel has better "background" characters than DC. So where both have great lead characters, Marvel's universe feels deeper in the background for me. Gambit is one example, where he's not a major player in the Marvel Universe but he's my favorite comic character of all time. Same goes with reading the Avengers...yeah, Captain America, Iron Man, etc. are the front runners but there are some great background characters. And yes, I'd pick Spider-Man over Batman lol.
I think with writing both companies have taken the lead at different times. Right now we're at a great time for both, IMO. Mark Waid (Daredevil) and Peter David (X-Factor) are doing awesome on the Marvel side and Geoff Johns is continuously doing great work in DC on multiple titles.
I should say that I think DC makes better animated movies compared to Marvel. I've seen every single DC straight to DVD movies like all the Justice League, Superman, Batman, Green Lantern, and Wonder Woman movies as well as their featurettes for Green Arrow, Captain marvel, Jonah Hex, etc. With the exception of one GL one, I thought they were all wonderfully done.
I'm in the process of watching the Marvel animated movies. I just got through Invincible Iron man, planet hulk, and the two Ultimate Avengers movies. They were enjoyable, but I just don't get into the story as much. It's just reaffirming the fact that I don't like the hulk. haha
and btw, did anyone hear that they're changing Captain Marvel's name to Shazam? Apparently it's because most people think that's what his name is anyways so in the next Justice League issue, they're doing his origin story and introducing him as Shazam. :shake:
I love characters from both but I think I would have to give a slight edge to Marvel. This is based purely on just having more characters that were around when I was growing up, so I just know them better.
DC has quite a few that I know, but only a few that I actually like (batman and Lobo off the top of my head) and I was never fond of Superman.
Like Wade, it's hard for me to choose.. I didn't think I'd be able to but as I sat here, I decided that I'd have to go with Marvel. The amount of big-time Characters's they have is just great and I feel more people would be able to name more Marvel Characters then DC Characters off the top of their head. I just feel like if you match the two up, Marvel would destroy DC in a fight.
A few years ago I would have answered DC without even thinking about it (I used to be a Batman fanboy, now I just like the movies a lot). I've watched a bunch of great stuff with them recently, X-Men, The Avengers, Iron Man, Thor, Agents of SHIELD.
I have to say that I'm quite impressed with Marvel as a whole, they have so much good content. DC's problem is that they only have Batman and Superman, Man of Steel was great, but their other new movies aren't really anything to get excited for.
DC. I'm a huge Batman fan. He has all of my favorite villains as well. I've never been much of a fan of Marvel... and they only made things worse with the terrible Spider-Man movies and that dreadful Avengers train wreck.
That being said, I'm not much of a comics fan. I could never really get into them. All my exposure is through movies, TV and video games.
DC holds the the title for the classics, so I'd never put them down, but Marvel has a way with bringing authentic cons to the pros of being "super" that makes me relate. Plenty of the DC characters have issues, to be sure, and their stories are thick...but Marvel writing and storytelling has so much anti-hero, so many Byronic heroes like Russian literature of the 19th century that it makes me fall in love with these "damaged" characters.
In the DC universe, superpowers (with the exception of a small Achilles heel here and there) are largely seen as gifts, endowments, and blessings. No one is as strong or noble as Superman, no one as quick as Flash, no one as skilled and wealthy as Batman (though he has some darkness doesn't he). On the Marvel side of the fence, the Fantastic Four get their powers at great cost, both emotional and physical. Spiderman looses family and friends during his transition. Wolverine is a mental case who was brought about through experimentation, and the whole genesis story of being a mutant is the feeling of exclusion. Iron Man is a hard drinking narcissist playboy and Beast is...a beast.
The villains are telling, too. DC villains seem largely maniacal or just truly mentally/criminally insane. The Joker, case and point. DC heroes are the embodiment of the great Greek and Roman gods, and their villains are evil incarnate. Marvel villains seem to more often lash out based on injustices they suffer. Half the mutants chose evil because they were excluded--half chose the side of light. Choice is a big thing and such a human thing that I feel that is what defines Marvel. Superman knows he's supreme, but he doesn't even seem to need to make really hard choices on how to use his power--it just seems innate.
I think they are really two different worlds, each defined by the times in which their most iconic characters were created: DC during the nationalistic years, and Marvel during the counterculture years.