This summer has been heating up for blockbusters. It hasn't really disappointed so far yet either.From Hunger Games to the Avengers with a few great shows in-between, the movies have been hitting a much needed box office high for theatres all over North America. Marvel/Disney has made a huge dent this summer with their record breaking numbers and now it's down to Marvel/Sony and DC Comics/Warner Bros. With their release dates so close together, you know that Spider-Man and Batman are going head to head.

Without seeing either of them, and watching how things have been going in terms of movie marketing, I can give a pretty good idea of what the outcome will be, but let me lay out a few things for you first: - The Amazing Spider-Man releases July 3rd - Dark Knight Rises releases July 20th

- Spider-Man has approximately 3 trailers out (1 Teaser, 2 Full length Trailers) - Dark Knight has approximately 3 trailers out (1 Teaser, 2 Full length Trailers)

- Spider-Man has a number of featurettes released on-line (totalling close to 25 minutes of footage combined with trailers) - Dark Knight has no featurettes

- Spider-Man began pre-sales just this week (week of June 25th - Monday) which is just over a week before their release date. - Dark Knight began pre-sales June 11th. Over 5 weeks before their release date.

Reading the writing on the wall, Spider-Man has spent a lot of time trying to generate more buzz online and push people to a small pre-show window, hoping to get people in and out quickly. That says to me, they're hiding something. Dark Knight on the other hand, shows that there is mystery and anticipation. They want people ramped up and excited about their release WAY BEFORE it's close and they're leaving plenty of speculation of what might happen to Gotham's finest.

I'm not stating that Spiderman isn't going to do well in the box office. It is, after all, Spider-Man and he'll sling his way to the top of the box office but I don't think we'll see him break any records, or be there for too long.

Let me share my opinion why and you can take or leave it. Spider-Man is a reboot. We'll be re-watching part of the story that's already happened. Yes they are taking it in a different direction, BUT we're watching the origin of Spider-Man AGAIN. I think people will be saying, "Didn't we already see this?"

I think Batman is going to do much better simply because people will be buying into the story and the journey that Chistopher Nolan has taken them on. It's a conclusion to what, at least I think, is what re-sparked the comic book movie era and will leave a mark for all studios and superhero movies to try and match.

I'll be seeing both of these movies this summer, but I already know which one I'll enjoy more. Hopefully, I'll at least be pleasantly surprised by the other one.

Cheers, Matthew A. Hawkins

BTW - If you want to take 25 minutes and get a complete sneak peak of Spider-Man, a guy online developed a 25 minute sort of short film of the movie. *Spoiler Alert Though* Check it out here.