Some might not realize the true importance of a good score for a film, a score can make or break some of the best scenes for any movie. But this time we will be looking at some of the best themes composed for comic book films, songs that defined a character in some aspects. Some of the most memorable scores created for comic book films that deserve attention and praise. While there are so many others we would love to include like Heroes from Avengers: Age of Ultron or Flight from Man of Steel, we limited it down to just ten as some of the most epic themes in comic books films.
Film: Batman Begins (2006)
Composers: Hans Zimmer & James Newton Howard
Reason: After Rachel is attacked by Scarecrow, Batman races to administer an antidote that could save her life. However the GCPD are attempting to apprehend him. Forcing him to use his Tumbler to burst through the city and back to the batcave. Zimmer and Howards use to violins in this sequence raises the intensity as Batman plows through the streets of Gotham in a race against time.
Theme: Is She With You? (Wonder Woman Theme)
Film: Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016)
Composers: Hans Zimmer & Junkie XL
Reason: While Diana makes her appearance known throughout the film, it isn’t until Batman and Superman prepare to do battle with the monstrous Doomsday where Wonder Woman joins the battle. An incredible guitar rift as Wonder Woman attacks Doomsday sets the tone for the kind of Princess of Themyscira we are witnessing, the theme continued to be used for the films Wonder Woman, Justice League and assuming Wonder Woman 84.
Theme: Theme from Superman
Film: Superman: The Movie (1978)
Composer: John Williams
Reason: The Superman Theme is one of the most recognizable scores in history, used repeatedly throughout the film and even referred to in future Superman installments. Want to know how special it is? It’s John William… Indiana Jones, Star Wars, Jaws, Harry Potter, Jurassic Park… That guy. If this music doesn’t make you want get down to your tighty whities and wrap a red blanket around your neck while posing with your fists at your hips, you must not like Superman or quality music.
Theme: The Avengers
Film: The Avengers (2012)
Composer: Alan Silvestri
Reason: After the film introduces us to the threat our heroes will be facing in the opening scene and then bam! The Avengers pops up on screen as we listen to Alan Silvestri’s theme for the Earths Mightiest Heroes. The theme was given other incredible renditions in future Avenger installments, including a worthy follow up song titled Heroes in Avengers: Age of Ultron.
Theme: Theme (From Spider-Man)
Film: Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017)
Composer: Michael Glacchino
Reason: The first thing you hear when Spider-Man: Homecoming begins with the Marvel Studios logo is a variation of the original Spider-Man theme song composed by Paul Francis Webster and Bob Harris in 1967. Considered as one of the greatest theme songs of all time, Glacchino does it justice with his symphonic take on the Spider-Man theme song.
Film: Black Panther (2018)
Composer: Ludwig Goransson
Reason: As T’Challa and Nakia return to Wakanda, this beautiful theme plays in the background and summarizes the rich unique culture director Ryan Coogler is presenting to the audience. Really though, you can simply play this films soundtrack or score and be transported into the world of Marvel’s Wakanda. It is no wonder Ludwig Goransson won the Oscar for Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures (Original Score).
Theme: Bathroom Dance
Film: Joker (2019)
Composer: Hildur Guonadottir
Reason: After Arthur Fleck commits his first series of murders, killing three Wall Street men and fleeing into a bathroom. While this isn’t much of a heroic or epic theme, it is still worth mentioning. What this theme does for this scene is set the mood for the type of film we are in for, as Arthur performs a strange alternative dance. Representing that he is becoming more and more comfortable with his actions and the skin he lives in.
Theme: Suite to X2
Film: X2: X-Men United (2004)
Composer: John Ottman
Reason: During the opening credits of the second installment of the X-Men film, it seems that director Bryan Singer felt like he was ready to cut loose to give us one of the best films in the X-Men franchise. While we loved Michael Kamen’s work on the first film, it was John Ottman who came on for the sequel and created this masterpiece that went on to appear as the superhero mutants theme in future X-Men films.
Theme: The Batman Theme
Film: Batman (1989)
Composer: Danny Elfman
Reason: Not only does this epic theme feel proper for a Batman film, it feels proper for a Tim Burton film. Elfmans theme for Batman will be one of the definitive markers for the Dark Knight, especially considering shortly after the release of this film came Batman The Animated Series which took inspiration from this theme. Similar to Williams theme for Superman, Elfmans theme for Batman has been stuck in our heads ever since.
Theme: Battle Theme
Film: Zack Snyder’s Justice League (2021)
Composer: Junkie XL
Reason: While this isn’t an official release yet, it was showcased at DC Fandom in September 2020 by Junkie XL. While we respect Danny Elfmans work on Joss Whedon’s Justice League, we were disappointed we never had the chance to hear Hans Zimmers and Junkie XL’s score for the film. Now with the Snyder Cut finally happening, we will be given the proper theme for the proper movie. This might just be the hype for Zack Snyder’s Justice League talking but just this one minute of music is better than everything by Elfman for the film.
What are some of your favorite themes from comic book movies? What did we miss that deserve to be on this list? What do you hear when you read the comic books? Let us know!