It's almost a rule of comic-book adaptations: with each great superhero movie there must follow great amounts of bitching. With each 2008 summer release, there's a new editorial from some frayed writer, tired of the whole POW-SMASH-BOOM of it all.io9 is eagerly anticipating the end of the trend, while Entertainment Weekly's Chris Nashawaty bravely declared his hatred of all things superhero.I can understand their frustrations; I even share a little of the weariness. Try as I might, I can't wind myself up for Thor or Ant-Man.

But I still find myself defending the genre, albeit lamely, as my mom exclaims "Not another comic book movie!" every time she reads one of my stories.I champion it because there is one boon of the superhero surge that goes largely unnoticed: it's becoming the A-list springboard for male actors.Is your career languishing? Land a comic book lead! Think about it. Some of the most avidly buzzed-about names of late owe their status to a two-dimensional illustration.

categories Cinematical