We know that geek entertainment isn’t just for geeks anymore. More TV shows and movies are about superheroes, fantasy and science fiction than in recent decades.
So how do you sort through which superhero movie is Marvel and which is DC? And what does that even mean? Media Medusa is here to help! We’ve put together some blog posts to cut through the chatter and give you the lowdown on what to watch and what to skip. We want to save you time that can be spent somewhere else.
Maybe you’ll even find your next favorite movie franchise or TV series. Let’s get started!
Disclosure: Media Medusa receives a commission if you purchase through the affiliate links on this post, at no extra cost to you.
Marvel Movie Timeline – Find out which Marvel movie to watch first, and which ones you can skip. We also rate each movie, explain Infinity Stones and tell you if you need to sit through the credits. (Examples include Avengers, Captain America, Iron Man)
DC Movie Timeline – DC movies are getting a bad rap, but they’re not all that bad. We rate each movie, list them in chronological order and explain who’s who. (Examples include Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman)
Here’s a rundown of the superhero TV shows that are currently on the air. We included a brief synopsis for each one.
Agent Carter – Agent Carter only lasted two short seasons, but it was one heck of a show. It really didn’t deserve the treatment it received. I’m including it on this list because a) it was such a great show and b) it’s party of the bigger Marvel universe. Agent Carter follows Peggy Carter after WWII ends, when she works for the S.S.R., which is the precursor to S.H.I.E.L.D. This is another great show for young girls to watch. ABC. TV-PG.
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. – A Marvel TV show on ABC that dovetails with what’s going on in Marvel’s movies. Lots of action, some sci fi and even some super powers. Rated TV-14. Read our Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. blog posts >>
Arrow – This is probably the darkest superhero show on a major network during primetime. The Green Arrow is a tortured soul, so a lot of episodes explore what the “right thing” tod o really is, like killing someone or just putting them in jail? Same world as The Flash. Definitely TV-14, even though it’s on at 8 p.m. Read our Arrow blog posts >>
Black Lightning – On the CW. With a dangerous new drug on the streets and his eldest daughter determined to engage in vigilante justice, an Jefferson Pierce decides it’s time to come out of retirement. Also explores racism in the U.S. TV-14.
The Flash – A CW show that stars the Flash, who is a good guy, through and through, even when he’s fighting villains with powers. Has a lot of messages about family, friends and greater good. Same world as Arrow. TV-PG, occasionally TV-14. Read our blog posts about The Flash >>>
The Gifted – This FOX TV show follows the civil war between humans and mutants. The X-Men have asked the Mutant Underground to help keep mutants from being imprisoned and to get them to safety. The show’s creators have made it clear that The Gifted does not follow any X-Men movie continuity, including Logan. TV-14.
Gotham – Don’t be fooled by the title. This FOX TV show is more about James Gordon, who starts out as a detective but rises through the ranks of the police, than it is about Batman. Sure, Batman’s there, but he’s Bruce Wayne as a child. Lots of great Batman villains, though. Leans toward TV-14 at times, but most of the time probably PG.
iZombie – I can’t watch iZombie. Sorry. I can’t deal with [gulp] the gore. Olivia is a medical resident who finds that being a zombie has its perks (braaaaains), which she uses to assist the police. CW. TV-14
Krypton – This isn’t Smallville or any Superman story you know. It’s the untold story of Superman’s grandfather as he fights for justice on his home planet. He’s essentially trying to keep it from blowing up. Syfy. TV-14.
Legends of Tomorrow – CW’s TV show about a group of time-traveling misfits. Some of the cast rotates in and out from other CW superhero TV shows. For instance, Sara Lance was originally on Arrow. The Legends live in the same universe as Arrow and The Flash. TV-PG, occasionally TV-14. Read our Legends of Tomorrow blog posts >>>
Legion – One of the trippiest TV shows ever. Legion follows David Haller as he tries to make sense of the world and his own mind. It’s a show about mutants, but you won’t find any famous X-Men here. FX. TV-MA. Read our review of Legion >>>
Lucifer – Yes, this is a DC superhero TV show. Lucifer airs on FOX, although it does not exist in the same world as Gotham. Lucifer retires from Hell and moves to Los Angeles, where he owns a nightclub and helps solve crimes. TV-PG.
Supergirl – CW’s TV series about Clark Kent’s cousin, Kara Danvers. This CW TV show is a gauzy, superhero-lite look at Supergirl, her superhero friends and a bunch of alien villains. Very empowering show for young girls. Supergirl lives in a different universe than Green Arrow, The Flash or the Legends of Tomorrow. TV-PG, occasionally TV-14. Read our Supergirl blog posts >>>
The Walking Dead – Again, I don’t watch this one, but Lou Martin and Mike Brown (Media Medusa contributors) do. And they’ve written plenty about it. Sheriff Deputy Rick Grimes wakes up from a coma to learn the world is in ruins, and must lead a group of survivors to stay alive. AMC. TV-MA to the extreme. Read our blog posts about The Walking Dead >>>
I separated the Netflix Marvel series from the other TV shows because they tell a larger story. Plus, I wanted to list them in chronological order, which is how I think you should watch them. Chronological order is not the order in which the Netflix Marvel shows were released.
Marvel’s Daredevil – Follows Matt Murdock as he tries to balance his life as an attorney with his life as a vigilante. First in the Netflix Marvel chronology. TV-MA.
Marvel’s Jessica Jones – Following the tragic end of her brief superhero career, Jessica Jones tries to rebuild her life as a private investigator, dealing with cases involving people with remarkable abilities in New York City. (Best of the Netflix Marvel series, according to me.) TV-MA.
Marvel’s Daredevil, Season 2 – Matt Murdock must deal with two new threats, on top of the usual street crime he already deals with. TV-MA.
Marvel’s Luke Cage – After Luke Cage is released from prison, he reluctantly uses his gifts to keep Harlem safe from organized crime lords. TV-MA.
Marvel’s Iron Fist – After being presumed dead, Danny Rand returns to take back his father’s company. He is forced to fight old friends and new enemies. TV-MA.
Marvel’s Defenders – All of New York’s “gifted” come together to fight The Hand. This series is the culmination of the other Marvel series on Netflix. TV-MA. (Not for sale yet.)
Marvel’s The Punisher – Frank Castle seeks revenge on the people who killed his family. But he doesn’t realize how far up the chain of command the corruption goes. TV-MA. (Not for sale yet.)
Marvel’s Jessica Jones, Season 2 – New York City private investigator Jessica Jones is beginning to put her life back together after murdering her tormentor. Now known throughout the city as a super-powered killer, a new case makes her reluctantly confront who she really is while digging deeper into her past to explore the reasons why.
Did I miss one? Let me know in the comments!