Pop Culture Smash 3
By: Alexander (not Alex) “River” Gatensby
This article was written before more characters were announced for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. It does not influence the result of the poll, but I felt it necessary to acknowledge this.
Imagine this: All of your favourite characters: Ness, Mario, and Sonic, or Spider-man, Hulk, and Doctor Strange, all joining forces, or even duking it out. These are the things that you thought of while playing with your actions figures in the sandbox as a kid. (back when people actually took them out of the box). Then, you sit down in front of the TV and see that wonderful advertisement, showcasing all of your childhood heroes joining forces for an Ultra Exciting TV Special! “X-men fighting Spiderman? What!? They’re not even from the same comics!” Or maybe it’s a video game that allows you to fight your friends as your own respective video game hero of choice…
These are called crossovers.
Recently, crossover events have been a popular topic in the media. It’s probably due to the release of “Avengers: Infinity War” and many people’s claim that it is ‘the most ambitious crossover ever’. Because of that, the Internet blew up with discussions on what the most ambitious crossover actually is, throwing many TV and video game crossovers into the mix. They often sarcastically use the quote: “Avengers: Infinity War is the most ambitious crossover ever” then compare it to a picture of what they claim to be the real “most ambitious crossover”. Needless to say; it has become somewhat of a meme.
Now, Crossover events are really cool… like, really cool, and long ago, when the media wasn’t overflowing with them, It was really a spectacle to see your favourite heroes team up for the good of mankind. One of my favourite crossover comic books is a collection titled “Ends of the Earth” in the 1990’s run of “the Amazing Spider-man” (the series before Superior Spider-man). In this line of comics, one of Peter Parker’s enemies, Doctor Otto Octavius, seemingly turns over a new leaf, and fights for good. Spider-man is the only one who believes that Octavius is still evil, and has to gather a bunch of lesser-known Marvel heroes, such as the Big Hero Six, and the few A-list heroes who believe him to take down the evil Doc Ock. Reading this comic excited me; it was one of the coolest things I had ever read, and to this day I still think about it.
The recent film, “Avengers: Infinity War”, brought back that feeling. Seeing all of the heroes we have come to know and love in Marvel’s Cinematic Universe, join together and battle Thanos without even really getting the chance to talk and hang out. They had to just get up and fight, because the fate of the universe depended on them.
The same can be said about the Subspace Emissary, the story mode for “Super Smash bros. Brawl”. In this creative crossover, many gaming icons, including Mario, Link, Solid Snake, Ness & Lucas from the Earthbound series, and many more had to join together to save the world from being engulfed in destruction by what can only be described as “Dimension Bombs”. It’s really cool to dive into a game where I can play as characters from my favourite game, Earthbound (which cost me $300 on eBay), while also being in the same world as Kirby and Starfox. Super Smash Bros. and Avengers alike have very large fan bases, who are constantly speculating on which characters will be included in the next entry. It’s these two Titans in the media that inspired me to write this piece on crossovers. It also helps that Infinity War came out his year, and Super Smash Bros. is slated to have a new entry to the series in December of 2018.
But crossovers don’t even need to be about Superheroes. As my cousin Aurora Hardy would remind me, Wizards on Deck with Hannah Montana existed, crossing over three of Disney Channel’s most popular kids drama shows, and apparently it had quite the influence on her. Now, It is my intention to collect a list of the most prominent film and video game crossovers, to compare them and see which stands out as the best, or “most ambitious” as the kids would say.
First off, we need to choose some worthy crossovers. The best crossovers seem to be Avengers: Infinity War, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, Kingdom Hearts, the Justice League Movie, Who framed Roger Rabbit, and the Lego Movie. I compared a lot of lists online, and took suggestions from friends and colleagues, to shave it down to just a few, but I think I’ve narrowed it down to the most important ones. I’m very passionate about some of these, namely Avengers and Smash Bros., so this is very personal to me.
Lets take a look at my scoring system:
They will get 1 point for each show or video game they come from,
10 points for each studio (or whomever owns the rights to a character)
And then of course we will compare that to the Yukon Community Vote. My scoring system may be flawless, but just because there are more characters in one movie/game, doesn’t mean people like that one the most, so I’ll have a community result like before, and an analytical result separately…
So let’s score them!
(Keep in mind that I am at the Internet’s mercy, and there is a lot of counting to do. I will do my best to keep accurate, though some numbers may be slightly off)
Smash Bros: 64 characters and 32 assist characters, from 39 different games owned by 9 different game studios, which totals at 226 Points. This scores pretty high, even though the character list is not final as of writing, and that makes me pretty happy.
Roger Rabbit: over 166 characters, from around 65 different cartoons, and 8 different companies, which gives us a crude score of 311 points. I’ll admit that prior to writing this PopCulture Smash, I hadn’t seen this movie, but just looking at the character list alone makes me want to watch.
Kingdom Hearts stands out in the crowd. It’s famous for its use of Disney and Final fantasy characters, which is really awesome. There are 98 characters from 21 different shows and games under 2 different companies (Square and Disney), adding up to 139 Points
Lego Movie: A great movie. It uses a lot of the characters that have lego versions of themselves, really bringing back the childhood feeling of letting your toys from all of your favourite shows and games fight each other. It has 73 characters from 12 different lines of toys and shows under the umbrella of 5 different companies, scoring 135 points
Infinity War; the one that started all of this discussion in the first place, has 40 characters, from 8 different movie series’, owned by two different studios (Marvel and Sony), totalling in 68 points.
Judging how many points the rest of the entries have, and that this is the film that sparked all of the conversation, I am a little surprised that this one is so low on the list. It may not win the ‘Smash’ but the feeling while watching this movie might still be the best.
Justice League: 20 main and supporting characters from 3 different movie adaptations all under the umbrella of WB, giving it 30 points.
Unlike with Infinity War, I am not surprised at all that this scored so low. It kind-of counts as an ambitious cross over, but there are just far too few characters, and so many characters in the DC film universe share movies, not to mention all the characters that were just introduced in this one (which is most of them).
Now that we have that out of the way, we need to add the community vote, which is the whole life of this series.
Adding all of the votes from social media, it comes to:
Smash: 25% of votes
Roger Rabbit: 10.5% of votes
Kingdom Hearts: 15% of votes
Lego: 19.5% of votes
Infinity War: 27.25% of votes
Justice League: 2.75% of votes
After reaching out to the community, and coming up with a scoring system to gauge which crossover is the most ambitious, then looking at the results, it is clear that Infinity War was the crowd favourite (sorry Justice League) and Roger Rabbit, the movie I haven’t even watched, is the most ambitious, if that’s what we’re still calling it. I still don’t feel completely comfortable gauging the ‘ambition’ of a movie or game, but that is the term that is currently in use, so we are going with it.
I’m not surprised that Infinity War won the people over; just because it’s still fresh in the minds of movie-goers. It is quite possibly one of the best Marvel movies ever, not to mention that the Marvel Movies have been leading up to Infinity War for 10 years. It houses many superheroes that people have emotional attachments to. The real winner here though, is Roger Rabbit. I’m sad to say that, before writing this article I hadn’t seen Who Framed Roger Rabbit, but reading all about it in my research made me regret that. It’s amazing how many character cameos you can squeeze into one film. This film is truly deserving of the ‘most ambitious’ title that it earned today. I can honestly say that I am satisfied with the results.
There you have it; another ‘Smash’ under our collective belt. We have successfully determined the most ambitious crossover in visual media.
Thanks for reading,