God of War is one of Sony and PlayStation’s biggest video game franchises to date. While the original God of War series was a much-loved reinvention of Greek mythology, the soft reboots from Santa Monica Studio have taken the quality of the storytelling to a new level. The titular God of War, Kratos, has been on a tumultuous journey since audiences first met him. He’s a compelling character who could easily slot into other fantastical fictional universes.
In the comic book medium, there are two major companies that are larger than the rest: DC and Marvel Comics. Kratos could in theory fit into either one of those superhero landscapes, but there’s only one that he should join due to the tone of the character. Regardless of where Kratos would end up if Sony was open to collaborating with one of these significant publishers, fans know that the depth, brutality, and core traits of the character would translate beautifully to the page.
Kratos Is A Complex & Gritty Character
Kratos is such a complex and gritty character. He has evolved a great deal since his initial appearance and has been shown to have genuine depth, changing as loved ones come into his life and leave. That range of characteristics certainly doesn’t mean that Kratos fits into one comic book company more than the other. However, the character’s story is a tragedy, full of loss, acceptance, and revenge. Tonally, both DC and Marvel Comics have explored these themes, but there’s a grittiness and level of violence that matches the God of War more closely to that of DC. There are obvious parallels to be made between some aspects of Kratos’ personality and the likes of Batman or Lobo. Players who have embarked on Kratos’ journey chronologically through all God of War titles could easily imagine the character fitting quite comfortably into the world of DC.
But it’s DC’s approach to ancient mythology that also meshes well with Kratos’ storytelling. Both God of War and DC Comics take a more realistic and grounded approach to the gods and monsters of ancient lore. Of course, these arcs are still fantastical in nature and do not shy away from the mythological deities of bygone civilizations. But unlike Marvel, which has fictionalized its gods and myths further through its own lens, DC treads closer to the brutality of the tales of old. The characters keep their complexities and there are fewer changes in these fabled legends. God of War has crossed mythologies over though, presenting different Norse and Greek lore to create a new type of story. DC doesn’t do this as much and that’s where the differences begin. However, the violence and tragedy of both Kratos and his original mythology won’t be lost in DC’s pages. And with characters from Greek mythology such as Wonder Woman and Zeus to interact with, Kratos could instantly begin to be surrounded by a notable cast of supporting players.
Kratos’ Mythology Is Incredibly Deep
Kratos’ use of Norse and Greek mythology does also lend itself to the Marvel Comics brand however. Marvel has created its own unique iteration of these legends and even forged original new characters to add further conflict. God of War has of course built its own unique mythological universe and in many places has completely forgotten about traditional lore in favor of quality storytelling. Marvel is known for its incredible world-building, with locations like Asgard and Olympus taking much more prominent places in its comic universe in comparison to DC. Kratos and his role in the Olympian Pantheon would work very well within Marvel continuity. What’s more with the likes of Punisher and Ares fighting over the mantle of God of War, there’s even a natural story to introduce Kratos through, filling the power vacuum that has been left and recreating the cosmic balance. As long as Kratos manages to survive through that conflict, that is.
When looking at Marvel’s most significant heroes, from Hercules and Thor to Odin and Loki, it’s obvious that there’s more of a place for gods in that landscape than there is in DC. Indeed, gods make up the fabric of the comic book company, with the publisher forever analyzing the impact that actual gods have on humankind. In comparison, DC loves to elevate man to the realm of gods, looking at the likes of Superman or Green Lantern as mere mortals who have transcended beyond their human limitations. Kratos, decked out in his impressive armor, could seamlessly join that line-up of deities, as the God of War series has continuously explored what it actually means to be a god. Marvel thematically treads similar ground and the backdrop of that rich mythology helps to contextualize that discussion.
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Kratos Would Ultimately Fit Into This Universe
Kratos’ personality and complex, gritty themes work well within the context of the DC Universe. But the wider mythology and role that Kratos could potentially take on meshes better with the Marvel Universe. Thus, it’s a complicated question to analyze, as to which of the two comic book worlds the god of war should join. The answer depends on what readers are looking for. If they want a personal and emotionally fraught tale that tonally matches the games, then DC may be able to deliver better. But of course, Marvel is also capable of going towards those dark places.
If readers want a narrative that involves a larger ensemble of characters and a better collision of worlds, then Kratos would naturally fit into Marvel in a more streamlined manner. Ultimately though, Kratos doesn’t need a huge shared universe. The character would benefit from smaller, emotionally compelling stories that match the tone of the video games. Thus, DC Comics is probably a much better space. The comic book company is more likely to take risks, especially with out-of-continuity stories that are bold and unyielding. Marvel might be hesitant to truly lean into every aspect of the video games if it could risk their shared universe. Thus, DC is the better choice!
Kratos is one of PlayStation’s most notable characters, but if the God of War were to move to a comic book universe, DC & Marvel are good contenders. Read More