The Best and Worst Comic Book-Based TV Shows

Fox's Human Target is only the latest, if not the greatest, TV show to spring from the pages of four-color comic books. While comics on television haven’t touched the crossover success of films like Iron Man and The Dark Knight, they’ve still got a long history of supplying material to the small screen; we've rounded up some of the best and worst comics-to-TV adaptations and, just for kicks, the real-life creative superheroes with feet in both worlds.

The Best Comics-to-TV Shows


Human Target (FOX, 2010- )
Although it’s a bit early to judge, Human Target is off to an enjoyable start; viewers are only likely to be disappointed if they expect it to be a faithful adaptation of the psychologically intense, master-of-disguise stories published by Vertigo in the early 1990s. Instead, the show (featuring a top-rate cast of regulars in Mark Valley, Chi McBride, and Jackie Earle Haley) eschews its comic-book origins and instead plays like a throwback to the frothy days of ‘80s television action. Which, in these days of heavy backstories and intricate serial storytelling, can be downright refreshing. Anyway, it’s far better than a previous adaptation attempt from 1992, in which the lead role of Christopher Chance was played by Rick “Jesse’s Girl” Springfield. Grade: B-



Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (syndicated/CBS, 1987-1996)
This animated kids’ show strayed far afield from its source. The indie comic it was based on, by Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird, was a somewhat dark, black-and-white affair that took itself pretty seriously—or at least as seriously as a comic about intelligent, karate-fighting bipedal turtles named after Renaissance painters possibly could take itself. The cartoon version ditched all that in exchange for a gleefully stupid approach that was saturated in ’80s and ’90s junk culture. In doing so, it took the comic from a small cult hit to a massive international success. The less said about the movie versions, though, the better; reveling in junk culture is one thing, but prolonging the career of Vanilla Ice is quite another.
Grade: B (cartoon); D+ (movies); Z- (“Ninja Rap”)


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The Incredible Hulk (CBS, 1977-1982)
Creator Kenneth Johnson took a lot of liberties with the venerable Marvel Comics Jekyll-and-Hyde character, but the result was the first truly successful superhero show of the color era. Even though the scripts got a little tired after a while, the show wisely anchored its appeal on the character of the tightly controlled Dr. David Banner (Bill Bixby), the little man forever pushed too far, and the raging gargantuan demon (Lou Ferrigno) inside him. It’s a testament to the staying power of the TV series that the show was a much bigger influence on the two recent film adaptations than the comic book on which both are based. Sure, it was just The Fugitive with a radioactive monster instead of a one-armed man, but how is that not awesome?
Grade: B, raised to a B+ for any episode where the Hulk captures a dude by throwing a bunch of tires around him.



Tales from the Crypt (HBO, 1989-1996)
The original EC Comics horror series, which ran from 1950 to 1955, caused a nationwide moral panic for its gory, sex-stoked morality tales—but it was also a huge influence on a generation of young filmmakers. Forty years later, they paid tribute to the comic with this top-notch horror anthology series; directors like Robert Zemeckis, Richard Donner, John Frankenheimer, Walter Hill and William Friedkin all pitched in with episodes drawn from the original EC series, and given their full measure of spice thanks to HBO’s ability to show content that wouldn’t be allowed on network TV. It also featured an instant classic score from Danny Elfman, and an unforgettable host in the Crypt Keeper.
Grade: B+, depending on the director



The Tick (FOX, 1994)
Based on author Ben Edlund’s indie series for New England Comics, The Tick played the superhero angle for laughs, but never cheap ones: Absurdist humor was placed over sharp character notes, and the main character—a hulking brick with a dementedly philosophical outlook—took fighting Soviet vending machines and gangsters with chairs for faces very seriously. The excellent, though short-lived, animated adaptation was followed in 2001 by an equally excellent—and equally short-lived—live-action series, with a pre-Lost Nestor Carbonell as “Batmanuel.”
Grade: A (animated series); A- (live-action series)



Batman: The Animated Series (FOX, 1992-1995)
Setting the standard for small-screen adaptations of superhero comics, Batman: The Animated Series featured a unique visual style, thanks to designer Bruce Timm. The dark tone of the series made it decidedly not-for-kids, but it maintained a sense of adventure that appealed to longtime fans; a similar series starring Superman wasn’t quite as good, but a second spinoff featuring the Justice League may be the best superhero series ever to air.
Grade: A- (Batman); B (Superman); A (Justice League)




NEXT: The Worst Comics-to-TV Shows

The Worst Comics-to-TV Shows


Sabrina the Teenage Witch (ABC/WB, 1996-2003)
Another runaway success that spawned TV movies, merchandising, and its own comic book, Sabrina the Teenage Witch—itself based on a franchise from the Archie Comics empire—capitalized on the booming tween market and made a star out of Melissa Joan Hart. But the show was defined by its limitations: It's camp was extremely mild, it lacked the edge of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and its target audience meant that it couldn’t conjure the soap-opera sexiness of Charmed. More often than not, it played out like a teenage version of Bewitched—with a less appealing cast. Plus, despite being an Archie property, we didn't see a single cameo from Moose, Jughead, or Professor Flutesnoot.
Grade: C (show); B (Melissa Joan Hart)



The Adventures of Superman (syndicated/ABC, 1951-1958)
For the greatest superhero of all time, Superman just can’t catch a break. He’s been the subject of innumerable movies and TV series, almost all of them deeply flawed; this early hit suffered from dopey special effects, utterly forgettable bad guys, and scripts that were almost indistinguishable from one episode to the next. (It pales in comparison even to the Max Fleischer cartoons that aired a decade earlier.) And worse was yet to come: There were the inconsistent films, Lois & Clark, and—see below—Smallville. People talk about the Superman Curse (which began with this show’s hero, George Reeves, blowing his brains out); the real curse is having to watch all of this nonsense.
Grade: C- (live-action series); B (Fleischer cartoons)



Smallville (WB/CW, 2001-present)
It’s hard to argue with those dates: Any show that can last ten years in this day and age has to have something going for it. But this series, based extremely loosely on the teenage adventures of Superman, has always suffered from not knowing exactly what it wants to be. It started out as an angsty teen relationship drama; it later tossed in monster-of-the-week elements borrowed from Buffy; it set up a tense love-hate relationship between Clark Kent and Lex Luthor that circled around until all the life fizzled out of it; and it deliberately eschewed costumed superheroics until its producers realized that it could draw in the geek crowd with them, after which it absolutely piled them on. Sometimes it’s better to burn out than fade away.
Grade: C- (Smallville); D (The Flash)



The Fantastic Four (NBC, 1978)
The Fantastic Four are widely considered one of the greatest comic book superhero teams, but no one seems to be able to get them right in the movies or on TV. The 1978 animated series did no one any favors by replacing the Human Torch with the cretinous H.E.R.B.I.E. the Robot. The Marvel cartoons of the ’60s, a trio of badly animated adventures starring the FF, Captain America, and The Hulk, preceded this version and were slightly less awful, but they’re mostly remembered now for their ridiculous theme songs (“When Captain America wields his mighty shield/all foes who chose to oppose his shield must yield!”). When people say comic books are stupid, this is what they’re talking about.
Grade: D+ (1978 series); C- (1960s series); F+ (the line “Ol’ Doc Banner, belted by gamma rays/turns to the Hulk—ain’t he un-glamour-ous?”)



Batman (ABC, 1966-1968)
There’s no denying that the 1960s television adaptation of the Batman comic was a success; the problem is that it was too much of one. For years after, its iconography (“Bam! Pow! Comics!”) and low-camp approach to the medium tainted any attempt to take comics seriously as a medium. Adam West and Burt Ward’s hokey take on Batman and Robin set even the comics back by a decade; by the time Batman got his grim-avenger aspect back, it was almost too late to salvage the character.
Grade: D-, with an extra minus for every time since 1966 that someone has uttered some variant of “Holy _______, Batman!”



NEXT: The Men Behind the Curtain

The Men Behind the Curtain


Unless you’re into comics, you might never have heard of most of these writers—but they’ve been the creative force behind shows like Heroes, Lost, and Babylon 5. Here’s our quick take on their work so far.

Paul Dini and Bruce Timm
The men behind Batman: The Animated Series (Dini provided many of the scripts, and Timm gave the show its unforgettable look) made a splash in animation; DC animated series are often said to take place in “the Diniverse.” Both went on to ear acclaim as comics creators as well.
Best TV episode: “Heart of Ice” (Batman: The Animated Series, Season 1, Episode 3)
TV Grade: A
Best comics work: “Detective Comics”

Brian K. Vaughn
A number of Lost writers and producers have moved from TV to comics, including Javier Grillo-Marxuach and Drew Goddard. (Paul Dini has also written for the show.) Brian K. Vaughn followed the opposite path: The producers brought the hotshot comics author into the writers room after reading his work on titles like “Y: The Last Man” and “Ex Machina.”
Best TV episode: “The Shape of Things to Come” (Lost, Season 4, Episode 9)
TV Grade: B+
Best comics work: “Ex Machina”

J. Michael Straczynski
The man fans call “JMS” first got into television via Saturday morning cartoon scripts, contributing work to Marvel and DC before creating the cult hit TV series Babylon 5. From there, he’s taken a far more prominent role in comics, penning high-profile titles like "The Amazing Spider-Man," "Fantastic Four," and his own "Rising Stars" series.
Best TV episode: “Severed Dreams” (Babylon 5, Season 3, Episode 10)
TV Grade: B
Best comics work: “Supreme Power”

Joss Whedon, The creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Firefly and Dollhouse is also a lifelong comics fan, and, after making it big as a TV producer, dabbled in comics. He’s given Buffy an eighth season in comic-book form, he took over for Brian K. Vaughn on “Runaways,” and he wrote “Astonishing X-Men” for several years to general critical acclaim.
Best TV episode: “Hush” (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, season 4, episode 10)
TV Grade: B
Best comics work: “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”

Jeph Loeb
Loved by many fans, hated by many others, Jeph Loeb—a writer who’s had one foot in comics and another in TV for over a decade—is controversial in both worlds. A veteran of Smallville and Lost, Loeb didn’t manage to win over many of his detractors when he became a writer and producer for Heroes during its first three seasons.
Worst TV episode: “Dual” (Heroes Season 3, Episode 13)
TV Grade: D+
Worst comics work: “Ultimatum”

Which comics-to-TV shows (or creators) would make your best and worst lists?

Comments (98)
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Well, I'm 5 years late to this party.

Thank god the site has improved it's design. I forgot what shit it was back then.

BTAS deserves an A or an A+. The 60's Batman is definitely not my cup of tea, but it still holds an important place in the Dark Knight's history, so to name it among the worst is absurd.

By the way, do your fucking research on Jeph Loeb. The guy only wrote 4 episodes each on those shit shows Smallville and Heroes. He realized what shit Heroes was and he left. Not an impressive TV career I agree, but you make it sound like Jeph Loeb was largely responsible for Heroes, and that couldn't be further from the truth. Do your fucking research! Oh that's right, you're not on this site anymore, because you SUCK!!!
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Are you crazy putting Smallville on the worst list and the Human Target on the best
Smallville had 10 seasons 10 how many show last this long ???
Sure it kind of ended with a low note but overall it was a great show
It took Superman seriously and made his character more real and less comic book like
It made him human and even a bit dark at times but It didn't ruin his basic goodness that
he represent like the all anti hero crap we have today in movies (see Man of Steel)
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My worst list would also include the animated New Adventures of Superman, made by Filmation for Saturday morning on CBS in the mid-1960s. These were Filmation's typical cheap animation with repetitive background music. Granted, not much plot can be done within 8 minutes, but there was room for more than what was here. The Fleischer cartoons had done that 25 years earlier, although I would not see those until much later in my life. Several of these wore out the plot of Superman encountering Kryptonite, then finding a lead shield in some form to overcome it. There was a Superboy cartoon in the middle of the show. After recently seeing some of those on YouTube, I have to say that those were considerably better than the Superman episodes. I forget the name, but the Superboy shows were written by a well known comic writer who passed away in just the last year or two.
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It's pure myth to say the Adam West series damaged the "grim avenger" persona of Batman in the comics. Batman had stopped being a ruthless vigilante back in 1940, just a year into his run, when Robin was introduced as his sidekick. (Soon afterward, his enemies largely ceased their homicidal ways, and became eccentric thieves with gimmick costumes.)

For the next 25 years, including the lead-up to the 1966 TV series, Batman was a square-jawed boy scout, and his comics were full of absurd, barely coherent plots; giant appliances and other oversized props; and crazy "scientific" devices such as intention sensors and radioactive tire-track tracers. The producers of the TV series saw potential comedy in these silly stories , and the show's earliest episodes were in fact faithful adaptations of comicbook stories. Batman's "Dark Knight"/Gotham avenger persona wasn't revived in the comics until the early 70s, several years after the TV series ended.
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As lists are subjective, I don't see much point in agreeing or disagreeing, but a few factual fixes: "When Captain America *throws* his mighty shield, all *those* who chose to oppose his shield must yield."

"*Doc* Bruce Banner, belted by gamma rays, *turned* into the Hulk." Admittedly, turned sounds like turns to me, but this at least keeps the verb tenses uniform.

Captain America: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1dWIPUuTPB4
Hulk: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D3fEVgqoaok
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It is ironic that this list has Smallville listed as one of the worst, when even it was just voted Best Superman TV Adaptation on SupermanHomepage.com
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i call shinanigans!
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Hehe. I like all the references to Buffy.
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okay are u serious? Have you not seen zatanna? I would give my left nut!!! Smallville is one if not the greatest show. BLASPHEMY.
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I have to agree with Mac-Ale. While the '60's era Batman wasn't my favourite show either, it's kind of unfair to give it such abuse without considering the context. For that era and that market, it was pretty clever and certainly funny. And it was trying to be a SIT-COM, not a dark, edgy 21st century graphic novel turned tv show. Human Target, I'm really liking so far. But it's good, it's smart, and it's on FOX. A DEADLY combination. Just like Firefly, it doesn't stand a chance! Smallville certainly has it's faults but it's also generally entertaining. Sabrina was a kids show, sorry if it wasn't dark enough for you. And explain this to me. They say "less appealing cast..." and then they give Melissa Joan Hart a B? And as for the "Superman Curse"? I agree that the movies could be hit or miss, and Lois and Clark didn't aim very high, nevertheless a lot of pretty decent entertainment has come out of that franchise. Just because Kevin Smith says a film is boring, doesn't make it so. I mean, I like the guy, and I think he's funny, but even he can be wrong once in a while. And to the guy who remembered the animated "Spiderman" as being a great Saturday morning cartoon, I say Hell Ya! I've seen a couple of episodes just recently, and while they are certainly dated, I think they stand up pretty well. My eight year old nephew LOVES them. And, with a mention of the TV series, they could have sneaked in a mention of the films (which they did more than once), which are almost certainly the best comic book to movie adaptations ever. Right up there with the two new Batman films. (Or at least 1 and 3 where. Part 2 was pretty confused. Peter decides he can't be with Mary Jane because it's too dangerous for her, and then proceeds to spend the rest of the movie wooing her. And naturally the most important part of Doc Oc's whole apparatus - the one thing that just MUST NOT be damaged - is housed in a little GLASS box at the base of his skull). And then these same reviewers give the incredible hulk tv series a B? They painted Lou Ferigno GREEN and gave him lots of balsa wood and prop glass to trash. Fun to watch once, maybe, but even a 10 year old would get bored watching THAT every week.
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I love it when writers barely out of college pretend to know anything about comic or TV history. Not a single program from before the 1990s was written about in the context of its time.
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The Middleman rocked everything else...which is why it was canceled. Because everyone is dumb.
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What about Spiderman the Animated Series... that was awesome as a kid.
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The tick was An awsome show
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i do like smallville it has got some really really good episodes. and unfort some very bad ones too..
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@drmayeda

FYI Birds of Prey was a comic book. It originally stared Black Carnary and Oracle, eventually taking in the Huntress, and Lady Blackhawk (Gail Simone rocks) before expanding into having a wide range of women heroes they could call on. It ran for 10 years (Jan 1999 - April 2009) for 127 issues before coming to a close surrounding the death of Batman.

Sorry honey...but you were WRONG!! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Birds_of_Prey_%28comics%29
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Oh yeah...forgot to add...if they fault Batman for 'ruining' the comic image why don't they lay the same blame on the Incredible Hulk?A show that didn't even get the main characters name right?
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This article was a load of crap. - They fault a FAMILY show for not being as edgy and racy as an adult show (Sabrina), - They fault a 9 year show for growing fro what it once was (i'll admit I had some problem in season 6 and 7 of the show...but what decade long show doesn't become strained at a 6/7 mark. I think the new blood in producing was a godsend)

- They Fault an intentionally campy show for being memorable

And atop of that they have no sense of comics either.

Jeph Loeb - Ultimatum was amazing. Taking an over crowded comic world and shaking it upside down

Brian K. Vaughn best work is wildly accepted as Y the Last Man

And as much as I am a Weddon Fan, and I am trying to remain as neutral as possible, after two HIT Television franchises (Buffy verse and Firefly), four shows (two which were wild successes, one which made fox enough money to be the second canceled show in history to have a direct sequel feature film after cancellation) You think the man deserves more then a B
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I don't agree with anything in this article. Love Smallville.
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I have watched the first few episodes of Human Target. I have really liked them. Fast action and really fun. Worth seeing
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Awww no Teen Titans for the best, that was such a great show and had a HUGE fanbase, the fans even convinced them for the season 4 i heard.
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lets face it, Smallville is not the show it started as. All the characters have become monotenous and boring even the ones we liked, and the story now feels like they make it up as they film it. They obviously don't know where they're going or when if they are ever going to turn clark/the blur??? into Superman. All this and the one whoooosh special effect they use to treat us like we're idiots has turned this superhero show from a A into a solid D-
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Best list is lackluster, worst list is flat-out wrong. The 60's Batman was an excellent production and, although frequently lampooned by idiots and the woefully ignorant, was barely outrageous compared to the stories actually running in the comics those days. The George Reeves Superman episodes were also a helluva lot better than Shazam! which came decades later. As for the so-called "Best" list, it was difficult to watch Hulk episodes in a row and the show itself is probably more popular now thanks to the magic of nostalgia than it was when it came out. Wonder Woman was far more amusing. Cartoon-wise, the recent JL & JLU are more deserving than Batman which suffered from sporadic quality between seasons/resets. The 90s X-Men & Spiderman both had an excellent flow and continuity to them. Batman Beyond was also great and fizzled long before its time.
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I agree with most of this, but I can't say I fully agree. Smallville isn't exactly my favourite show, but I still don't think it deserves to be on the 'Worst' list :/
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YES! This is the best thing I've seen in days! I cannot believe Smallville is on the worst list! YESSS!!! I am amazed. Considering Smallville's ranks in the top 20s all the time, which disgusts me btw because of what the show has become (nevermind the fact that it's never been a good interpretation of Superman by any means), I expected the worst when I saw this article. I am now extremely satisfied, especially because of the apparent disgust for the writers by the author of this article, same as I have developed.
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People... You've to unserstand Smallville: Tv Series is not Superman at all what's so ever. It's about Young Clark Kent learning his steps ways becoming Superman into the near future. I agree with the poster 100% for sure. Smallville: Tv Series is the worst show now after the dropping of Jonanthan & Martha Kent, Lionel Luthor & Lex Luthor and Lana Lang & Pete Ross. All the meaning progress of Smallville Characters are gone tell the Smallville Story into Clark Kent's early days as Teenager. Come on now.... Smallville: Tv Series now is really totally pointless with these future Characters of Justuce Leaurers & Other Heroes into the Story. This is Smallville before Clark Kent ever before Superman in near the Future, not Justice Leagure or Adventures of Superman. Come on now... Their is no reason for the the other heroes by DC Comics tell Clark Kent about his destiny is as Superman. He should figure out his destiny on his own ways. I think Clark Kent gets the picture about his destiny is being known as Superman in the future by Legion of Superheroes, his father Jor-El, Brainiac and Zod. Again their is no reason for Chole Shullian & Justice Leaguers and the others heroes by DC Comics tell Clark Kent about his destiny is. Smallville: Tv Series run up to Season 9, because of Oliver Queen/The Arrow, Justice Leaguers, other heroes by DC Comics and Clark Kent & Lois Lane. Everthing else after that, is peice of crap plot stories tell. Smallville: Tv Series had better plot stories during the original cast members of this show. This show now is unbelievable. Jor-El & Lara didn't give born to a vampire baby and Jonathan & Marath Kent didn't raise up a vampire baby. Why in the world is Clark Kent dressed-up as a Vampire in along black coat? God... should've had Clark Kent wear a black leather jacket with that middle peice. Well, people... look at 7th Heaven grain up having 11 Seasons and then they stop after that. So, doubt it Smallville: Series will follow as well having 11 Seasons. So, it probably won't come close beating 7th Heaven hit 11th Season. So, i don't want hear Smallville: Tv Series is all that being the longest show on the network. As of right now 7th Heaven is the longest drama show on the network and not yet beated as well. Again, Smallville: Tv Series is not Superman. Just the years before Clark Kent is ever Superman in the near Future. I am truely all time Superman fan and I am disappointed how this show came out to be after the 6 years run without the original cast members. It's Horrible to watch even more of it! This Shows over the years has been dropping every Super-Villain off the show every each season goes by. Such as Lex Luthor from Season 1 to Season 7, Brainiac from Season 5 to Season 7, Bizarro from Season 6 to Season 7, Zod from Season 5 to Season 9, and others have 2 episodes then they're gone. I been thinking what in the world Clark Kent will face up against in the future. When he finish up is training and becomes known as Superman. The freakin meteorfreaks like always, he been going up against thru almost of the Series run. Or maybe Smallville: Tv Series is not really real, it's just a freakin dream about the timeline out of place connected to Superman 4: Quest of the Piece. After Christopher Reeve's Superman/Clark Kent got hurt by Lex Luthor's Super Stong Soldier on the moon. Superman want under the weather sick wouldn't come out save the world. Well, at this point i guess he picture his past life as teenager with Lana Lang in Smallville. That's brings the timeline out of place back into Smallville of the past comes to be this "Smallville: Tv Series" by Christopher Reeve's Superman/Clark Kent dream over being under the weather sick cause up against Lex Lethor's Super Strong Solder up on the moon.
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What no Birds of Prey?
It took the name of the comic and Barbara Gordon and then though out anything to do with the comic. Plus it sucked on toast.
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Wow is it me or do you people just really hate Smallville? Check the numbers on your own site because Smallville has a huge following. I will admit that sometimes it is flawed, and at times I want more but I would hardly put this in the worst category!
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After reading through this, it sounds like someone just doesn't like Superman. My dad bought all the seasons of the 1950's show. From the episodes I saw, I say they did have some odd plotlines, but what do you expect from TV at that time? Anyway, the point is the show is good for for it's worth. But, yeah, it's not the best thing. Good/bad in a funny way.



The 90's animated Superman cartoon was one of the many I watched. What was bad about it!? This with Batman was awesome.



Also, I'm surprised to see the animated show of The Tick even mentioned, but the live-action one? The animated show was one of the cartoons I barely remember from when I was maybe 4-5 years old and I remember it being great. The live-action one, which I did watch while it was on the air, didn't seem like it would have a chance to succeed. I'd give the live-action version of The Tick a B- or C+ at least.
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You do realize that the 1960s Batman was supposed to be corny? Every single line Adam West uttered was said with tongue planted firmly in cheek. It's hilarious. I think the problem here is poor little comic book nerds don't want people making laughingstocks out of their precious superheroes. -_-
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The BATMAN series is a classic
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Teen Titans? Static Shock? Superfriends? Hello?
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Where's Teen Titans on this list? X-Men? What about Wonder Woman? Lois & Clark? The live-action Spider-Man series? HBO's Spawn series? Smallville being on the worst list? You got to be kidding! I think this list is the worst I've seen in years...
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to partially answer parsec64, Birds of prey doesn't qualify as it was never a comic book. Black Canary was a guest character. The two characters consist of Oracle previously batgirl and huntress the daughter of Batman and Catwoman. This is in a post batman gotham city and we saw offspring. The show was way to shortlived to really get a feel for the show. It kept jumping around so it was hard to find.
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The first six or seven seaons of Smallvile were pretty good. The last couple seasons were not.
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I disagree with Smallville. If it was bad, I wouldn't have been watching it for all these years. Sure, the series wouldn't be that long if there weren't so many filler episodes, but when Smallville gets serious, it gets hella serious. I also think that it's a show that has some kind of value, as it tries to show the viewer how it feels to be a superhero and the consequences that come with it. Aside from comic books and some Batman specials in the 90s, there's nothing else out there that tries to show us that.
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Don't these staff writers here on TV.com have editors? You know someone to check for spelling and grammar errors? Maybe someone to do a little fact checking to make sure things are actually correct before an article is posted? I found several errors throughout this article and it's hardly the first time it has happened on this site. Each time it happens this site loses a little credibility. Even if an article is an OP/ED piece, it should still be that facts are checked for credibility and accuracy. For example in this article, the episode of linked to for “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” is not the 80's/90's series but rather the show from the 2000's. Another example is the link to "The Fugitive" under the section for "The Incredible Hulk" is not to the 1960's series helped inspire that show, but rather to the Tim Daly reboot from 2000. And the biggest glaring error in this article is the one claiming that the people behind the dreadful "The Flash" series from the '90's are behind the occasionally equally dreadful "Smallville" when that's no where near accurate. And finally, this not really an error some much as it is an oversight (in my opinon); the "DCAU" as most fans call it, is referred to as the “Timmverse” more often than the “Diniverse”. This is because Bruce Timm was the one of the primary driving force behind it all from the very beginning, whereas, Paul Dini was not present from the beginning to what is presumably the end.
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Leonard, The Flash was not created or produced by anyone involved with Smallville. I double-checked the credits for each show at this amazing website called www.tv.com. You should look into it.
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Oh look, a 40 year old virgin.
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I'm kind of annoyed that nobody mentioned Teen Titans in the worst list.
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I'm kind of annoyed that nobody mentioned Teen Titans in the best list.
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Smallville wouldn't have been running for 9 years if it was bad. You really don't know what your talking about. Write something people actually agrees on.
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I cannot believe that Smallville is on the Worst list, that's just rediculous! and sure, during the first season there was teen-angst stuff, but that's cause he WAS a teenager, duh. If Smallville was really as bad as the way you people make it out to be, then it would never have lasted 9 years! and in my opinion, Tom plays one of the best Supermans ever, i have all the superman movies, and Tom is the only actor who can actually make it believable that Clark feels pain when around kryptonite. Smallville's not like the comic books, sure, but it provides an amazing background story to why Clark Kent became Superman. You people just don't know what you're talking about.
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The TMNT cartoon series done by 4Kids in 2003 was probably the best so far. Let's see Nickelodeon live up to that in a couple years.
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What happened to X-men: The Animated Series?
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why in the blue beetle hell is Justice League/JLU not on this list?
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Eh writers! you can see by most of the comments, smallville have lots of fan, then it can be in a worst list, or mayby your blind, anyway, the last 10 years a watched all the smallville episodes, some are bad, but most are great, this why we love the show, please next time watch it before making stupid comments!
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Well I read through this list and I had so much stuff to say about it, even finally registed here to comment. Then I read MemnochZERO's post and everything I wanted to say was put in there. But for one point I must reiterate.

The first Ninja Turtles movie is a classic in my eyes. Though quality may seem sub-par compared to the CGI in everything these days, the storyline (which is faithful to the comics, beyond April's career and the turtle's love for pizza) still holds up to this day. And even though I've seen it hundreds of times, I'd like to believe on a first viewing at my "advanced age", I would still love it.. I do agree though the second one left plenty to be desired and well the third was just horrible. Also If you were going to add Turtles to the post, you should have mentioned the 2002 turtles series. Which, at least for the first few seasons, was the closest comic adaptation of the turtles in animation. The violence was toned down of course, but most of the storylines were adapted straight from the original comic. There were some major differences, but it was still well done.

As for the Smallville debate that seems to always be going on. I have enjoyed Smallville for the last 2 seasons, before that not at all. I am a lifelong comic fan, and I look at Smallville as just another alternate universe. Which to me just seems easy to do in relation to comic inspired media. Especially since DC and Marvel utilize the alternate universe theories so much. It does make Smallville more enjoyable, for me at least.

Finally, no mention of HBO's Spawn series from the 90s, which was really well done in my opinion.
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@ Blue_Guardian could not have put it any better. As for my own thoughts on the "article":

Batman The Animated Series being anything less than an A+ makes this list completely pointless, and until Batman Begins it was the best adaptation of the Batman comics brought to the screen (both big and small). True the 60s farce they made with Adam West portrayed the comics of the 50s and 60s superficially accurate, but that comics sucked too and were full of more holes than this tv.com article (not to mention missing the point of Bob Kane and the original creative team's work on early Batman stories). Fox's original 90s X-Men series deserves to be on here as well (and Wolverine and the X-Men is great storytelling and aside from the animation is a great show), it was way ahead of its time and did a great job of showing then-current/new characters. Green Hornet also deserves to be at the top of the list, too (at no less than an A). While it shared the corny 1960s Batman series style visually, it more than made up for it with stone cold gritty crime drama and acting. Furthermore, you're praising the 1980s TMNT cartoon yet trashing the movie? I'll give you 2+, but the first film (aside from the bandana colouring) was/remains the most faithful adaptation of the original comic series so far (besides taking a bit of a cue from the cartoon with April's job), so again, it makes your list seem a totally suspect. Also, Smallville's worthy of at least a C+ or a very generous B, not a C-, simply because it takes a very glossed over part of Clark Kent's history and makes for some great drama. My favorite part of the original Donner Superman film was the stuff with young Clark on the farm. Granted Smallville has its ups and downs with quality, but it's better than some of the turkeys you've given a higher rating. Also not mentioned is Lois and Clark, which at the time was a really fun show since it focused on the mundane and not mindless action. I enjoyed The Flash, but watching it now the suit feels really dated. And finally Joss Whedon as a writer, while X-Men comics really played a part in the BTVS/ATS mythos and creation of characters his work writing the (not so) Astonishing X-Men comic was a huge let down, both as a fan of X-Men and his original work. His work writing Runaways was worse. Thankfully when writing Buffy comics, he's not as bad. Also HBO almost had the best comic adaptation brought to TV (Preacher) but the new head of HBO is a total wimp with no sense.



also

@mgfish Yeah Wonder Woman was an adaptation of a comic, she alongside Batman and Superman are the big guns of DC Comics. As far as the show goes, I thought it was pretty cool, and no matter who they get to play her in any future live action adaptations, I don’t think anyone can match Lynda Carter’s awesomeness. To me, she’ll always be the definitive Wonder Woman. No one today comes close.
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do a more thorough research before making such a list...
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