The Golden Age of Marvel Comics kicked off in 1961 with Stan Lee and Jack Kirby’s Fantastic Four #1. The company’s rivalry with DC Comics began almost immediately, as Marvel’s stable of new and refreshing characters like Spider-Man and the Hulk challenged DC’s long-held industry dominance and their roster of Superman, Batman, and the Justice League. Both companies now rule not only comics publishing but Hollywood moviemaking as well. Although Marvel has an undeniable edge in their massive cinematic universe, DC, through parent company Warner Bros., has made a major push into movies with an extended universe all their own.

Months after Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Warners and DC follows it with Suicide Squad, which opens in theaters this Friday. The movie, based on a popular DC comic from the 1980s by writer John Ostrander, is opening in early August, in the slot where Marvel debuted Guardians of the Galaxy in 2014 to surprise box office success. With no serious competition in theaters, Suicide Squad is DC’s chance to make a serious dent in Marvel’s movie advantage with their own team of amoral antiheroes. Of course, Marvel will soon follow with Doctor Strange, but for the moment, the stage is set for DC to make a big splash.

The DC/Marvel rivalry added another chapter last night at the Suicide Squad premiere, when director David Ayer yelled “F--- Marvel!” from the stage of the theater to the assembled crowd. According to reports from those in the audience, someone in the crowd started things by screaming “F--- Marvel!” and then Ayer responded by yelling it back. Here’s an Instagram video of the moment (and, yes, there is NSFW language):


#suicidesquadpremiere 1

A video posted by el tigre (@samirsamuraieme) on


A short while later, Ayer tweeted this apology:



It’s a classy move to own the gaffe that way; and even if he hadn’t, really no harm was done. A little competition is good for business. And no doubt this competition will continue for another 50 years.