Official film photo
Official film photo

Get ready for epic comic-book showdown

This is the year that DC Comics is taking a shot at Marvel’s crown for on-screen comic book supremacy.

First up was “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice,” which despite receiving terrible reviews was a box-office hit.

The criticism did hurt the company’s projected earnings; not even DC’s holy trinity of Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman are immune to bad reviews but “Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice” is far from being considered a flop.

Both companies will continue to slug it out as they prepare to unleash the next wave of superhero films this summer and fall.

This is your guide to this year’s superhero extravaganza.

“Captain America: Civil War” (May 6)

First up, is Marvel’s big gun. “Captain America: Civil War” is a take on the 2006 crossover that pits Captain America against Iron Man. After an international incident leads to massive collateral damage, the government seeks accountability. Captain America, played by Chris Evans, wishes to operate without regulation, while Iron Man supports government oversight. This leads to the fracturing of the Avengers and the inevitable battle. This is one of the most awaited comic book films this summer and will see the debut of Black Panther and Spiderman in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

“X-Men Apocalypse” (May 18)

Loosely based on the 1990s comic book storyline “Age of Apocalypse,” ancient mutant Apocalypse awakens after thousands of years of hibernation and plans to take over the world. “Days of Future Past” cast of James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender and Jennifer Lawrence will return to reprise their roles for the film. This is the ninth film in the X-Men franchise for 20th Century Fox and the third under the helm of director Bryan Singer.

“Suicide Squad” (Aug 5)

The film is the third installment on DC’s Cinematic Universe, which is vased on a comic book about a government-recruited super villain team tasked to execute dangerous missions in exchange for clemency. Suicide Squad is expected to give DC that big step towards catching what Marvel has done with its Cinematic Universe. Hype has been strong for the Will Smith-led film and is hoping to capitalize on word on mouth rather than the critical response for “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.” A loyal fan base can equal big money as we have seen so far.

“Doctor Strange” (Nov. 4)

Marvel’s wild card, the film follows the world’s top neurosurgeon, Stephen Strange, played by Benedict Cumberbatch as he suffers an accident that injures him and ruins his career. Strange sets out on a long journey of healing and encounters the Ancient One, who becomes his mentor in the mystic arts. Although not well-known by mainstream audiences, Marvel is starting to take more chances on obscure franchises to positive response; “Guardians of the Galaxy” and “Ant-man” are a good example of this success, thanks to the groundwork laid by Marvel.

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Get ready for epic comic-book showdown