Comic books climbing high

The daily reads of Patrick McAuliffe have flourished into a multi-billion dollar entertainment phenomenon.

“I got into comics young, but the super hero movies started when I was young, too,” said McAuliffe, 27, of Orlando.

He has been watching and reading since the trend of comic book movies started lightly in the early 2000s with the 2000 release of X-Men.

“I definitely think some of my interest in comics came from outside media like the Batman cartoon and the original Spider-Man movie,” McAuliffe said.

McAuliffe is one of millions of people who read comics on a semi-regular basis, only to see them suddenly become much more than a light read in 2008 with the release of Iron Man. The movie industry made a total of $2 billion in the United States alone, according to Box Office Mojo, and is on track to keep those numbers up for a long time to come, according to Comicchron.

A 2011 Marvel panel explored the film reboots of popular comic books. Photo courtesy: The Conmunity–Pop Culture Geek.

As a result of this trend, comic books have again become viable after dropping in popularity in the early 2000s. The comic book industry grew 5 percent in 2016 with sales totaling $1.085 billion, no doubt as a result of this ever-expanding movie trend.

This has not only given rise to a popularity spike in mainstream heroes but heroes such as the Guardians of the Galaxy as well who were never household names until their big screen adaptation in 2014, according to the Atlantic.

Which is just one of 107 live action adaptations of comic book properties released since the original Iron Man.

McAuliffe also noted that many of the stories have already been translated to the screen.

“If I think I’ll enjoy a comic arc I’ll read it,” McAuliffe said. “As a result, most of the stories popular enough to make into a movie I’ve already read.”

While the trend may seem like a typically male-centered interest it was discovered that roughly 47 percent of comic book readers are female, according to Comic Beats.

One such reader is Kathryn Golden who “was a fan before the trend started” she explains that “my dad was big into comics so I read his old collection growing up.”

While many of these movies still please crowds there are worries of fatigue with about five new movies of the genre coming out each year.