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ComicMix Six: The Worst Movies Adapted From Comic Books

Luana Haygen

Luana is an animated movie and superhero enthusiast with an eye for detail. She has been drawing and creating fashions since she was a child. She has been routinely helping here at ComicMix since 2009.

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68 Responses

  1. Mike Raub says:

    If you include Nick Fury, then you also have to count that wonderful treat we called Generation X from the 90's. Let the screaming begin!

    • Linda Gold says:

      If we are going to include TV movies than number one has to be the never aired Justice League.

      • Brian Alvey says:

        Is that the one with Fire, Ice and the Martian Manhunter in it? I saw a screen grab of that years ago and just figured I would never be able to see the actual show it came from. Got a copy?

  2. Linda Gold says:

    I must disagree with Daredevil being placed on this list when the original Punisher film was left off. The Punisher film makes Daredevil look like Gone With the Wind. I sat through the entire Daredevil film but couldn't get through 5 minutes of The Punisher. Come to think of it I'd put Batman Forever and maybe even the 2nd Tim Burton Batman film (hated the greasy mutant Penguin) on this list before Daredevil.

    • Rick Marshall says:

      Which Punisher film? I loved the first one w/ Dolph Lundgren, but hated the second one w/ Tom Jane. I enjoy tom Jane's work immensely, and I know he loved the character, so it killed me to see what they did with the film.

      • Linda Gold says:

        I was talking about the first one. You are the first person I ever hear say they liked it. At least the Tom Jane film had some relation to the character all though to be honest, as I said I could not get through even one scene of the Lundgren one.

        • Anonymous says:

          I have to agree that Dolph's The Punisher was awful. I love cheesy B sci-fi flicks and love other Dolph flicks but I couldn't watch more than 5 minutes of it either. I even went on a rant a few years back on how bad I thought the movie was. It left an impression…Rick – I'm glad you got some enjoyment out of it…:)

          • Rick Marshall says:

            Bah. When the bad guy asks Dolph who he is, and he responds, "I'm Batman" … pure genius.Of course, I also count the "Man-Thing" movie (at one point a major release and eventually a Sci-Fi Original Movie) as one of my favorite comic adaptations, so that should say a lot about *my* tastes.

      • Dan says:

        I tried to watch the 1st Punisher film, but Dolph with the dye job (and minimal acting abilities) was just too much to bear. Even my son, one of the biggest Punisher fans I know, couldn't watch this p.o.s. all the way thru.

    • Nevi says:

      Ahh come on.You just have hotpants because you wanna eat Afleck.Him and Dolph Lundgreen are the top of bad taste..lmao!

    • Aerwyn says:

      I would have loved Tim Burton's Batman Returns if it weren't for those mutant penguins with rocket launchers that are apparently mind controlled with some sort of mind control device. So basically, the leaps of logic are astounding in the last 15 minutes of the movie. That aside, it was great.

  3. Mark Torres/MFC Stud says:

    I like the League. Of course I had never read the comic. But I had to say that it had a better Hulk (at least this one actually fought something that he could hit), a better Wolverine/Lady deathstrike fight (it just seemed "cooler") and it showed me that Sean Connery still had "it".

  4. Mark Torres/MFC Stud says:

    I liked Punisher. I thought it was a great non-comic book movie. (unless you mean the first Punisher movie)

    • Linda Gold says:

      I did mean the first one (hence the word original). The Tom Jane one was fine I thought. Not great but okay.

  5. Chris Lisy says:

    As noted on another board I visit, someone mentioned Steel, with Shaq.
    Judge Dredd was pretty bad.

    • Vinnie Bartilucci says:

      Judge Dredd was an example of a film that LOOKED perfect, but the story and acting just couldn't live up to the look. Mean Machine Angel, the ABC Warriors, The Judge uniforms, all looked like they took the book and shook it till they all fell out.Doc Savage: The Man of Bronze was another example of that. They nailed the look perfectly, but the cast weren't quite good enough to hold up the story.The Shadow came damn close to working. They went for just a few too many cutesy lines, and that pulled at away from the bullseye.

    • Rick Marshall says:

      Steel would've definitely been on *my* list of the worst comics movies… but then again, that's why these lists are written in first-person and not from the group POV. ;)

  6. Martha Thomases says:

    I didn't hate DAREDEVIL. Ben was well-cast. There was too much clutter, but it was no worse than the last X-Men movie. Also, if Alicia Silverstone is pudgy, we're all in trouble.

    • Kai says:

      hold the phone…PUDGY BATGIRL???!?!!?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!??!?!?!?!? Chris, PLEASE tell me you were under the influence of a high fever, alcohol or some other substance when you wrote that? I do agree that the movie should be on the list for many reasons…but PUDGY BATGIRL????

  7. Mike Raub says:

    You know – now that we have brought in TV movies, let's heap any of those 70s/80s Captain America films onto the pile (still screaming over the White Queen).

  8. Wiredwizard says:

    I'm surprised neither Spawn or the much beleaguered Howard The Duck made this list… =looks at shelf= I should be one to talk though, owning copies of all of 'em excpet Batman & Robin…

    • Rick Marshall says:

      Yeah, I enjoyed both of those films, so they wouldn't be on my list. Of course, several of the films on Chris' list here wouldn't make *my* list, either – but I'm a bit weird about films.

  9. Allan Lamberti says:

    "Blade Trinity" is mighty terrible.

  10. Russ Maheras says:

    I thought "League of Extraordinary Gentlemen" was three separate films. The first part (Film #1) was terrific; the middle part (Film #2) was mediocre; and the final part in Venice (Film #3) was so indescribably bad it made me want to run screaming out of the theater.And since no one has mentioned it yet, I think I shot better Super 8 films in my backyard than Roger Corman's unreleased 1994 film version of "Fantastic Four."

  11. Russ Rogers says:

    Before we can begin to debate what are the best and worst movies based on comics, I think we need a comprehensive list of all the movies and TV movies made from comic book source material. There is a list at Wikipedia, but it isn't comprehensive. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_films_based_…I tried to add Wonder Woman (2004) starring Cathy Lee Crosby to the Wiki's list.I agree with Linda Gold, The Punisher (1990) with Dolph Lundgren is punishing to watch. Or was Linda Gold talking about the more recent less punishing, but still rotten Punisher movies? Maybe this could go in as a set.And "NICK FURY: AGENT OF S.H.I.E.L.D." (1998) is a much better TV movie than "Wonder Woman" (1974).I also think "Captain America" (1992) deserves a mention.I don't think projects that have never seen the official light of day should be considered. This includes the Justice League TV movie and Roger Corman's Fantastic Four. http://www.teako170.com/ffmovie.html

  12. Vinnie Bartilucci says:

    Nobody?NO ONE's gonna mention Howard the Duck? I'VE gotta do it? *sigh*, okay…It took Tim Robbins over ten years to stop being "Philsie" in my head. I think it was "The Player" that finally did it. (For the record, his wife Susan Sarandon has NEVER stopped being Janet ViceWeiss for me)Exactly two good bits – The scene in the unemployment office ("Ahmo find your feathered ass a JOB!") And pretty much anything out of Jeffrey Jones' mouth. Alas, Billy Wilder said the formula for a good movie is THREE good scenes and NO bad scenes, so this films falls short by a Duckworld mile.And am I the only person who saw "Brenda Starr, Reporter"? Timothy Dalton as Basil St. John is about as perfect casting as Matthew Lillard as Shaggy in Scooby Doo (I am still convinced that Mr. Lillard is the end result of a massive genetic engineering experiment to create the perfect actor to play Shaggy; a plot of such scope and vision that it puts the Bene Gesserit's plans to shame) and they even tried to go metafictional by having the writer transported to comics-world (where he shocks Brenda by having a navel) but nobody in the film, before and behind the camera (save Dalton, but ESPECIALLY Brooke Shields in the titular role) had the chops to run with it.I could (and possibly will someday) go on for pages about the assorted comic adaptations I've sat through. But I think Mike Gold will agree with me that the Miller "Spirit" might just make us look back at Sam J. Jones' TV version with heretofore unrealized nostalgia. Mark my words, if a clean copy exists, it will make it to video just as the film hits theaters, possibly before.

    • Russ Rogers says:

      Brenda Starr is also NOT on the Wikipedia's list of adapted comics! And yes, "Howard the Duck" deserves a mention. But Tim Robbins and Susan Sarandon aren't married, unless common-law counts.

      • Vinnie Bartilucci says:

        It is on their list of films adapted from comic STRIPS; I noted its non-listing and dug further."Tim Robbins and Susan Sarandon aren't married"Then there's still a chance for me?

  13. Matt Raub says:

    You failed to mention any Hulk film with the following elements:A blind lawyerA norse godanybody in a costume riding a motorcycleEric Bana

  14. Paul1963 says:

    I always get a kick out of imagining a pre-production meeting for the Dolph Lundgren Punisher film:"Okay, it's 1989, Batman is out and the entire world is plastered with Bat-symbols. It's a very effective way of promoting the film and it can be used all over the world. They don't even have to include the name of the film because everyone recognizes that iconic symbol. We have the green light to do a movie about The Punisher, whose most recognizable feature is a giant skull that covers his entire torso."Let's lose the skull."

  15. Vinnie Bartilucci says:

    I have a similar whimsical scenario between marvel and the producers of the live-action Japanese Spider-Man show from the 70's."OK, first question…what does his Giant Robot look like?"

  16. Danny says:

    I actually have a VHS recording of that lame '90s Generation X TV special. Scary stuff.

  17. Chris Ullrich says:

    Actually, I didn't mind 'Spawn' so much. 'Howard the Duck' was bad (even though it did feature Lea Thompson) and would be in my top ten list of bad films. I would also include 'Steel', 'The Phantom' starring Billy Zane (although technically based on a comic strip) and any 'Superman' film numbered higher than II.I won't ever include any Roger Corman films on a list like this. Roger always gets a pass from me as he gave me one of my first jobs in "the business." Plus, its not really fair to compare a major studio feature like 'Ghost Rider' or 'Catwoman' to something Roger shot in his backyard in Venice, CA for whatever change he could find under the couch cushions.

  18. Glenn Hauman says:

    38 comments in, and I'm the first to mention Supergirl? You guys are slipping…

    • Russ Rogers says:

      Which "Supergirl" movie are you talkng about? The 1984 movie, starring Helen Slater? Or the 1973 Filipino production, starring Pinky Montilla? I think both were DC licensed!http://andrewleavold.blogspot.com/2008/03/komik-s…Pinky also played Bat Girl in "Fight Batman Fight" (1973)!

      • Glenn Hauman says:

        Looking at that page, I suddenly understand how America has such a dominant lead in exporting their movies and TV shows all around the world. Ee-yikes.

  19. DrFreemanstein says:

    Russ Maheras wrote "I thought "League of Extraordinary Gentlemen" was three separate films."The copy I have on my DVD rack is definitely just one film…and there were no others prior! Was it screened in 3 pieces where you are??As for the Alan Moore thing with LXG, V for Vendetta etc. I could never understand how he can moan about what Hollywood did with his work when surely he would have had to give them permission to use it in the first place??? Did you hear JK Rowling whine when they produced that bucket of butcher's trimmings Goblet of Fire??? If he didn't want his stories butchered, maybe he should have fought to keep creative control as part of the contract when selling the rights!

    • Anonymous says:

      Summarized by Neil Gaiman, paraphrased by me, Alan Moore's attitude towards his stories and the Hollywood process is that the graphic novel is the best medium for his stories, so he'd rather just take the money, leave himself out of the process and wash his hands of the product.

    • Anonymous says:

      DC (Warner Brothers) had the movie rights to League (at the time, maybe not now) and owns V for Vendetta, Watchmen, etc. So no, he had no input on whether or not a movie got made.

  20. Mike Gold says:

    Well, if we're going to include adaptations from comic strips (Brenda Starr, The Spirit), then I've got to note perhaps my all-time biggest disappointment, with respect to this specific category: Modesty Blaise. Based upon one of the best written and best drawn strips of all time and with Terence Stamp and Dirk Borgarde playing leads, this unmitigated piece of shit needed Woody Allen (or, today, perhaps the South Park guys) to loop all the dialog. It's so bad it would make the MST3K 'bots explode. The Batman teevee show at its very worst was Citizen Kane in comparison. It's so bad, it's almost as bad as that Justice League pilot that starred Major Winchester as the Martian Manhunter.In other words, I didn't particularly care for it.

    • Russ Rogers says:

      Speaking of Mystery Science Theater 3000, check out <a href="http://www.rifftrax.com” target=”_blank”>www.rifftrax.com to see what some alumni of that show (including head writer and star Mike Nelson) can do with your favorite or least favorite movies. These mocking professionals skewer a bunch of comics movies, including Daredevil, X-men, Batman and Robin, Fantastic Four and Spiderman!

  21. The Movie Whore says:

    I will give the rest but if you never read the books then LXG was damn entertaining. You could replace it with Elektra which was worse than Dare Devil

  22. Anonymous says:

    Hulk 2003 was pretty terrible too. Granted, nowhere near as terrible as Batman and Robin, or LXG… but still god-awful.

  23. Anonymous says:

    I liked GHOST RIDER, DAREDEVIL and THE LEAGUE OF EXTRAORDINARY GENTLEMEN. Does that mean there's something wrong with me?

  24. Anonymous says:

    well,I'd like to add if, anyone already has, the Dr. Strange Pilot back in late 70's or early 80's. The Spiderman TV series,Man from Atlantis,which was a weakly vailed attempt at the Submariner. The syndicated series of a superhero who I wish I could remember,that Marvel comics coproduced,NightMan,or something like that,that's how much I really rembered. He had some limited esp ability,and some kind of costume that was bullet resistant. Yeah ,he was some kind of jazz musician , playing a saxophone in a night club. I also seen someplace,about the Spirit coming out as a movie(which is technically,was a comic strip).

  25. stephencomic nutt says:

    most good movies come from comics and books.its easy to say some opinion ,but do you list good movies from comics-its so easy to cut on others work-what have you made lately- i bet yer stories suck- so respect others work!and be nice! peace……

  26. Anonymous says:

    Hey, I liked The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen!

  27. Scott says:

    He-Shot-Cyrus.blogspot.comThe 1992 Captain America movie needed to be on this list. The Roger Corman Fantastic Four movie needed to be on this list.The Dolph Lundgren Punisher movie needed to be on this list.'Nuff said.

  28. Chris Traweek says:

    Red Sonja.

  29. Anonymous says:

    Spawn should be number 1 worst movie adapted from comic book

  30. Aerwyn says:

    LXG was destroyed in the comic to film adaptation. It was nothing like the comics, do not get me started on that. the "director" just threw a bunch of the characters together in a big melting pot that only looked impressive on the screen but had no substance.

  31. Dave says:

    Unbelievable that no one has mentioned the TRAVESTY that is Swamp Thing. Bad casting, bad effects, bad ST suit, too well lit. Just wretched all around. Did no one involved even glance at Bernie Wrightson's art? There's a movie just dying to be remade correctly. It's sequel sucked just as bad.

  32. Ben says:

    Oh come on, Daredevil, Ghost Rider, and The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen are at the top of your list? Seriously? They weren't great superhero flicks, but you can't honestly tell me you think they're the worst. I mean if I could find some entertainment without bleeding out my eyes, or vomiting uncontrollable as a result of watching the film it can't be horrible. I'm surprised you didn't put Spiderman 3 or X-Men 3 on there, or even the original Spiderman films.Anyway, your list is totally flawed. If its watchable at least even a bit, I don't see how it could make your list. Hell, I wouldn't mind watching those three again on TV one day if nothing was else on. Despite whatever artistic taste you seem to have.

  33. Ben says:

    Not that I'm saying I could make a better list (I've never tried to watch that many horrible superhero movies), but I do know those three at least wouldn't be that bottom as the worst of the worst.

  34. Anonymous says:

    This list takes into consideration that the films that were being judged were box office movies that were actually fairly mainstream. While that original fantastic four made way back when from that German director was REALLY bad, it was never released in theaters. Although it seems nice and cool to show off intricate knowledge of obscure films that were never placed on the market, you also have to think about the majority of people who are judging films that were actually public and which made some money at the box office. After all of that, if you want to say that Spiderman 3 should be on that list, thats alright.

  35. Chantix says:

    How is catwoman not number one?

    • Russ Rogers says:

      On lists like this, you generally count down to number one. So, in this case, she is. I don't think the numbering is all that important. Obviously there are more than SIX really bad comics movies worthy of making this list.

  36. Anonymous says:

    You guys are forgetting Hell Boy. The worst comic book flick i have seen. Can you say…boring?

  37. Anonymous says:

    I actually liked LXG, especially once you see the deleted scenes. I don't know, I guess I just love the idea of Tom Sawyer as a spy when he grows up. That was my favorite book as a kid. Then again I can't seem to get my hands on the comics so I don't know how well it stands up accuracy wise. Meh, I thought the acting was good enough to keep it out of this list, especially in lieu of movies like Electra and Supergirl.

  38. Chantix says:

    Ghost Rider and Electra were really bad.