On superhero costumes and geek leaks

This summer is certainly a hot one for superhero fans, as early pictures for The Dark Knight Rises, The Amazing Spider-Man, and the first photo of Superman in his costume for Man of Steel have all been released.

It’s definitely building anticipation for fans (myself included for Batman), and it gives them a nice little taste of what’s to come without letting too much out of the bag.

This started with the first Spider-Man flick, when the picture of the Spider-Man costume was released well in advance of the movie.

Instead of doing everything they could to keep it top secret, they let the picture out officially, because let’s face it, the geeks will not be denied with something like that, and it beat them to the punch before it could have leaked on the ‘Net. (Remember, there was also some scuttlebutt when the X-Men costumes got leaked on Aint-It-Cool-News before they were officially going to be revealed.)

Some studios aren’t very geek friendly, which in my opinion isn’t smart, simply because they’re the best free publicity machine you can ask for. If they’re really behind the movie and want it to do well, they’ll push it as hard as they can. But we’ve also seen what happens when the geeks get pissed off. Witness J.J. Abrams’s Superman script, which got trashed on Aint-It-Cool, then subsequently wasn’t used.

Yes, the geeks are very picky, and can often jump to conclusions before seeing the finished product. Early in the new millenium it was easy to be antsy, because comic films were just coming off the disaster of Batman and Robin, and hadn’t turned the corner yet.

And there’s a-holes in every crowd no matter what. 

Still, it’s always important to stay in touch with the people that actually pay money to see your movies.

Of course, you can’t let the geeks, or anyone else, dictate your art, but an open dialog can often be very healthy, and I always respect the filmmakers who stay in touch with their fans more than the ones who stay up in the ivory tower away from them.

Probably because the geeks will be watching, filmmakers these days are especially on their toes, knowing they’ll be tougher on the finished product than the legit critics. But like bikers, if you’re straight up and don’t cross ‘em, they can be incredibly loyal.

Lastly, as far as the actual costumes themselves, the Batsuit still looks cool, although I can’t imagine how difficult it is to move around in that thing.

The Spider-Man costume looks fine, from what little I saw, didn’t look that much different from the original, and the Superman costume also has the same kind of sparkly quality to it, like the Spider-Man suit, although I’m not sure sparkly works with Superman.

Obviously, you can’t stray too far from the classic costume designs, (although X-Men wisely ditched the yellow spandex), but at least the costumes of the next Superman, Spider-Man and Batman movies look all right so far.