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Adaptation Amalgamation / Comic Book Films

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Many comic book movies blend story elements from a few different storylines involving the characters, with varying results. Straight/faithful adaptations of storylines are fairly uncommon, especially with superhero comic books.


Marvel Comics

  • Spider-Man is adapted from Amazing Fantasy #15, The Night Gwen Stacy Died, and the Green Goblin stories of the 1960s. That particular Amazing Fantasy story was the origin story of Spider-Man, but the film itself drew from the other stories featuring Green Goblin by depicting him as the Big Bad, and his capturing of Mary Jane Watson was similar to the way he captured Gwen Stacy.
  • Amazing Spider-Man series:
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    • The Amazing Spider-Man combines Peter Parker's origin story with the Lizard story, which never appeared in Spidey's origin, as well as elements from Ultimate Spider-Man, mainly the fact that Oscorp was where Spider-Man got his powers from.
    • The Amazing Spider-Man 2 combined the origin of Electro (60s story) with The Night Gwen Stacy Died (70s). Once again, the former villain is not present at all in the latter story, a story that involved Green Goblin (albeit this time Harry Osborn taking his father's place in the part). The Rhino for instance is a Russian gangster like his classic depiction, but pilots a Mini-Mecha/Powered Armor like his Ultimate counterpart.
  • Punisher: War Zone crafted a story that used both characters from the mainstream books and The Punisher MAX as it has Jigsaw as its Big Bad (though the Heavy, the villain of the Max arc, "Girls in White Dresses", which was released a few months before the movie, was revealed to be the MAX version of the character), yet the movie shows him interacting with Don Cesare as the movie makes Cesare Jigsaw's uncle; he's shipping in something for the Bulats; and Pittsy and Ink, (henchmen for Nicolas Cavella) and Maginty are shown working for Jigsaw. Likewise the movie also shows Martin Soap working with Paul Budiansky.
  • X-Men Film Series:
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    • The original X-Men (2000) uses elements of the famous "Days of Future Past" storyline (though with the Time Travel adapted out), but it's also loosely inspired by the first few stories in the comics where the team fought Magneto. It's about the Brotherhood targeting Senator Robert Kelly, and it features the X-Men trying to stop Mutant terrorists from attacking a gathering of politicians, but it also features Magneto trying to overthrow the US government.note 
    • X2: X-Men United combines the plots of the graphic novel "God Loves, Man Kills" with the original "Weapon X" arc. It features the Mutant-hating villain William Stryker plotting to kill the world's Mutants, but it's also about Wolverine attempting to unravel the secrets of his past. Notably, it reimagines the fanatical priest Reverend William Stryker as the military scientist Colonel William Stryker, and it portrays him as the man who gave Wolverine his adamantium claws—essentially making him a Composite Character of William Stryker and Dr. Abraham Cornelius.
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    • X-Men: The Last Stand combines the plots of "The Dark Phoenix Saga" and the "Gifted" mini-arc from Astonishing X-Men. It features Jean Grey coming Back from the Dead as the murderous "Phoenix", but it's also all about the world's Mutants being divided by the invention of a controversial "cure" for mutation.
    • X-Men Origins: Wolverine adapts several plots from the comic in Broad Strokes, referencing parts of Wolverine: Origin, Wolverine's relationship with Silverfox, involvement in Team X, Barry Windsor-Smith's Weapon X, and Deadpool being part of Weapon X.
    • Logan is a loose adaptation of Old Man Logan in part due to rights issues with other Marvel characters. Additionally, it changes the deaths of the X-Men from being Mysterio tricking Wolverine into killing them to Xavier accidentally killing them with his powers during a seizure. It also adapts elements of Death of Wolverine, including Wolverine's healing factor shutting down and ultimately Wolverine dying, in a manner similar to Sarah Kinney's death in X-23's original comic. The modified crops Transigen created to kill mutants is a more grounded version of the depowering of mutants in House of M. Elements of Innocence Lost were also included, X-23 and her origins most notably, mixed with her original X-Men: Evolution incarnation. She has the age and implied ethnicity of her cartoon version, but the design and darker personality of her comic version (bar some changes to go with her decreased age, such as scrapping her teenage prostitution backstory).
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe:
    • The Avengers draws heavily from not only the mainstream Avengers comics, but The Ultimates as well. Loki is still used as the reason behind the team's formation, but a number of elements (such as Hawkeye and Black Widow being black-ops agents and founding members of the team, and the team being formed to combat an alien invasion by the Chitauri, whom Loki commands in the MCU) come from the Ultimate universe.
    • Iron Man 3 combines elements of the "Extremis" arc by Warren Ellis, most notably the Extremis itself and many characters from that comic such as Aldrich Killian, the "Sentient Armor" arc by Joe Quesada, the Mandarin's origin story, more plot points from the "Armor Wars" arc, "The Five Nightmares" arc with Ezekiel Stane, and the Civil War story.
    • Captain America: The Winter Soldier is based off a storyline from Ed Brubaker's run, but Captain America sports his Secret Avengers costume, while The Falcon looks like his Ultimate incarnation. The storyline also has elements of the "S.H.I.E.L.D. Gone Bad" storylines Nick Fury vs. S.H.I.E.L.D. and Secret Warriors, due to Alexander Pierce taking on the role of Aleksander Lukin as Winter Soldier's handler.
    • Avengers: Age of Ultron incorporates Ultron and The Vision's intro story (Avengers #54–58), Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch leaving a terrorist organization to join the Avengers (Avengers #16) (in the case of the film, HYDRA, though Scarlet Witch orchestrates Ultron's creation and serves him with Quicksilver until he goes too far), the Sentient Armor story-line in which Iron Man created an AI suit that went insane and tried to kill him (Iron Man vol.3 #26–30), Ultron using multiple bodies (Ultron Unlimited), and the name of the Crisis Crossover Age of Ultron.
    • Thor: Ragnarok is adapted from both the Thor: Ragnarok storyline, involving the Ragnarok on Asgard (this time with Hela taking a prominent role as the main antagonist) and Planet Hulk (the appearance of the planet Sakaar in the film, and the involvement of Hulk, Korg, and Miek, though Grandmaster is the one who takes on Red King's role as the planet's ruler).
    • The plot of Black Panther is largely drawn from Don McGregor's "Panther's Rage" arc from The '70s (Killmonger igniting a violent insurrection in Wakanda, which leads to a duel with T'Challa atop Warrior Falls), but also has story elements and major characters taken from from Christopher Priest (Nakia and Okoye) and Reginald Hudlin's (Shuri) respective runs. Some of the visuals (namely the new Black Panther suit) were also taken from the very recent run by Ta-Nehisi Coates and Brian Stelfreeze.
    • Avengers: Infinity War is an adaptation of The Thanos Quest and The Infinity Gauntlet (notably the fact that this is the film where he goes after all the Infinity Stones), but takes elements from Infinity as well in order to make Thanos' plot tied more closely to Earth. It also has elements of Annihilation and Secret Invasion.
    • Captain Marvel combines the title character's origin story with elements lifted from The Kree/Skrull War, such as the war itself.
    • Avengers: Endgame, like Infinity War, draws from The Infinity Gauntlet, but the Time Heist which takes up much of the middle section has a similar premise to Avengers Forever, with additional elements cribbed from J. Michael Straczynski's run on The Mighty Thor, Fear Itself, The Ultimates volume 3, and Rick Remender's run on Captain America.
  • Venom combines Planet of the Symbiotes with Venom's Lethal Protector solo series.
  • Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse combines Spider-Verse with Spider-Men, and frames it all as a Miles Morales origin story.

DC Comics

Other English Language Comics

  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles:
  • Judge Dredd: Elements from a bunch of different arcs are mashed together, including The Return of Rico (Dredd's corrupt twin brother Rico returns from a prison colony to get revenge), The Day the Law Died (an insane and tyrannical senior Judge seizes power), The Cursed Earth (Dredd traverses the bombed out territory outside the city), The Judge Child Quest (Dredd encounters the Angel family), and Oz (Dredd thwarts a plot to conquer the city with an army of clones), greatly condensing their stories.

Franco-Belgian Comics


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