Tag Archives: DCAU

The New #DCNation: #BewareTheBatman, Mister Terrific, and Wonder Woman

Image of Batman and Alfred staring at Michael Holt on their computer from Tumblr.

I was going to completely avoid

Beware the Batman

Beware the Batman (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Beware The Batman, the new CGI animated series on Cartoon Network. Green Lantern and Young Justice were unjustly cancelled, and dagnabbit, I’m still bitter. Then, late this week I read about a new series of animated shorts with Wonder Woman that were to air during BTB, and I thought, okay okay, I shall watch! And watch it I did. I was thoroughly underwhelmed. Beware the Batman was okay, it wasn’t gonna  blow me away

Batman as he was depicted in Batman: The Anima...

Batman as he was depicted in Batman: The Animated Series (1992–1995) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Batman The Animated Series/Green Lantern The Animated Series magical with their pilots, but it wasn’t Marvel’s The Avengers Assemble bad. #sorrynotsorry.

Image of Mister Terrific provided by comic vine.

One of the best surprises of this episode, “Hunted” was the appearance of Michael Holt, who becomes Mister Terrific, the third smartest man in the world and one of my favorite DC Comics heroes! I am kind of hoping for a modified version of Batman’s The Outsiders to appear in this series, maybe with Mister Terrific replacing poor poor Jefferson Peirce /Black Lightning. Katana is already going to be a regular on the show. As long as Holt keeps appearing on the show, I’ll watch. I don’t think this was a 1-time thing, but I could be wrong.

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Superman/Batman: Apocalypse

Superman/Batman: Apocalypse

Superman/Batman: Apocalypse (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

SHOULDA BEEN TITLED: WONDER WOMAN/SUPERGIRL: BIG BARDA RETURNS

I can watch Superman Batman Apocalypse over and over again. The only problem with this film that I have is literally the title. It is very misleading because it’s not about Batman or Superman; they are just incidental protagonists in this story, the action comes to them, starting with Kara (voiced by Summer Glau of Firefly fame) crash landing on Earth. From the opening scene, when Kara is in her birthday suit, the male gaze is questioned in this feature. A few workers catcall Kara, and one attempts to grab her, but she uses her super strength to crush his hand. Batman has to put her down by using Kryptonite he found at the landing site. Wonder Woman decides it’s in Kara’s best interested to be discipled by her and the Amazons. Clark/Superman, Kara’s cousin also from Krypton objects, but Batman persuades him its for the best. None of these are Kara’s choices; people are deciding for her. Darkseid the villainous god of Apokolips has decided he wants Kara as his leader of the Furies, a female band of warriors that lead his army to invaded planets, his honor guards (reads like a “third” world dictator” if you ask me).

Using trickery, Granny Goodness kidnaps Kara to Apokolips where Darkseid manipulates Kara into being one of his killers. Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman seek out Darkseid former Fury, Big Barda, who wants to live a normal, suburban life. But when given the chance for redemption, and vengeance against the tyranny of Darkseid, Barda agrees to travel with the Trinity to Apokolips to stop Darkseid, the Furies, and Kara.

Throughout this movies, the male heroes represent different types of male gazes. For Clark Kent/Superman, he’s the overprotective, chivalrous elder brother who thinks he knows what’s best for Kara. Batman, while a little xenophobic of her foreignness, is supportive of her being discipled by Wonder Woman in very much the male-feminist ally fashion. The construction workers and Darkseid desire nothing but the control of Kara’s body. It’s not until Kara accepts her responsibility to control her powers (her choices, her body) for the greater good as a hero that she is able to overcome Darkseid.

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Superman VS The Elite

Superman Vs The Elite is further proof that DC Comics is above and beyond Marvel when it comes to animated features. The DC Animated Universe has given us some great stories and interpretations on classic comic book heroes, and SVTE is no exception.  What makes DCAU so good at what it does is its inclusion of children’s experience into their narrative.  In every DCAU movie, there is “that scene” where the nitty gritty is revealed, the practical implications of the story.  In SVTE, this takes place on the playground, a group of kids pretending to be heroes. Who’s values do they want to personify? One boy is dressed as Superman but he doesn’t want to be Superman in SVTE. Truth, Justice, and the American Way are out. Violence, revenge, the way of the Elite (a band of anti-heroes) is in.

The fist to cuffs that takes place in the final battle between Superman and Manchester Black is not the true struggle.  This film is a theological debate about Superman’s belief in “the grace of humanity that is everywhere” versus Manchester Black’s commitment to total depravity, or the “36 flavors of Original Sin.” Yes, Superman knows that good does not mean perfect, but overall people are good. Meanwhile, The Elite, “the loud talking heads of conservative radio broadcasts,” and many other bystanders begin to see some effectiveness of retribution and the murders of perpetrators.  Even if it means that there has to be civilian casualties.  *SPOILER ALERT* In the end, Superman, with his  Truth, Justice, and the United Nations’ way wins.  But does it really? Has it? Even the image of making it look like Superman killed all of the members of the Elite before the big reveal, is an act of violence; Superman still relies on the threat of violence to stop killers.  But where is the line drawn? What are the limits on the human potential for goodness?

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