Best Bet: Comic book heroes abound on TV, film

It is almost a Golden Age for comic book fans who enjoy seeing their paper heroes up on the big and small screen. There is so much comic book goodness out there that it requires a bit of schedule juggling just to watch it all.

Some of the television shows with comic book roots are pretty obvious. You can catch the DC Comics character, The Flash, running around on The CW. The show comes complete with the red costume and a slew of comic book supervillains, including Gorilla Grodd, Reverse Flash and Captain Cold showing up to make his life interesting.

And ABC’s “Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD” is returning next week. Although they have done away with most of the superhero costumes, the show is deeply tied to the Marvel movie universe and SHIELD played a major role in last year’s Captain America movie.

Less well-known, however, are the comic book roots of “Constantine,” which wrapped up its first season on NBC a couple of weeks ago. Rumor on the comic book news sites is that the supernatural thriller show will return under its original comic book name, “Hellblazer.”

And as an example of a comic-based show that has outgrown its original past, “The Walking Dead” is in its fifth season of zombie slaying on AMC television.

But sometimes the comic book ties are nearly invisible. The hit Disney/Pixar movie “Big Hero 6” from last year? Originally a comic book series from Marvel Comics, although the movie was much better than the printed predecessor.

And right now, you can catch “Kingsman” in movie theaters. It is an entertaining but over-the-top violent, spy film that gives tongue-in-cheek nods to 1960s James Bond films, “The Man from UNCLE” and even “Get Smart.” “Kingsman” grew out of a six-issue comics mini-series from 2012, “The Secret Service.”