So, with the HD trailer now released for Batman and Superman are Going to Punch Each Other in the Rain and the certainty even my dad will now have seen the trailer - rather than answer the same open ended question in short bursts of tweets or Google Hangouts or whatever, here we go:
|Ah, man. We know you're doing your best, buddy.
The DCU that WB is working on for the movies does not jive well with the overall DCU I've liked for 30-odd years of my life (or 37 if you want to want to count when I got into Superman: The Movie and Super Friends - or, heck, before that if you're partial to Adam West, and I am).
There are pretty obvious lessons the WB execs believe they learned from the success of the Dark Knight trilogy and failure of Green Lantern and Superman Returns (although any kind of thoughtful evaluation that didn't require execs saving face just wasn't going to happen on the WB lot). And in that lesson-learning, much like DC Comics believed with the New 52, everything had to be Batman. And not just Batman, but the same Batman that shows up in Arkham Asylum video games.
Anyway, I tend to think that the point of Superman and Batman running up against each other is not just a question of the the tone of the characters coming into conflict - it's also the world and worldview colliding and reflecting off one another. And this isn't that. This is someone mistaking grim'n'gritty as an ends unto itself.
Hey, WB, if that Green Lantern movie didn't work out for you, keep in mind - you kind of made a terrible movie. No one is under any obligation to enjoy a generic superhero movie dripping with studio-driven decision making writ large (Blake Lively. Really?). And, I have to say, trying to continue the Chris Reeve Superman franchise 20-odd years after the fact may not have been, tactically, the greatest decision making.
There's a long history of Superman not moping his way around Metropolis - but that doesn't mean he's a character without conflict. It just means he doesn't sit in his basement and pout/ brood and go around telling everyone else they're stupid for not also being sad. And it doesn't mean Superman can't get mad, or tear up a robot or whatever. He does tend to get mad when the bad guys put innocents in harm's way (which, you know, they kind of screwed up a bit in MoS).
And don't get me started on how dumb it is to put Batman in his endgame armor from DKR up against Superman in their initial meeting (he was trying to fail, remember?).
Anyway, whatever. We all knew this was coming, and it'll appeal to people who like the idea of two action figures smacking against each other, and it'll really appeal to people who have that weird belief that Superman is somehow picking on them by not being Batman, and who don't quite get the irony that they're more or less confusing Batman with Lex Luthor.
As always, I'm a little baffled and bummed that DC/WB aren't interested in selling Superman and Batman to young kids. Superman, in particular, is intended to be an all ages character. I can confirm that it is interesting to see the character pushed into genres or worlds a bit darker than his own while retaining his Superman-ness to drive story. But nobody at WB seems to have any idea how to do that, which, I think, is an interesting note about who is making movies at the studio these days.
Meanwhile, the trailer for Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Shakes and Bakes was released, and, you know, this is the best I've felt about Star Wars since standing in line prior to The Phantom Menace. It's got spaceships and robots and Chewbaccas.
Here, take a look:
I'm actually not much of a JJ Abrams fan, but this at least looks passable as a Star Wars movie. Maybe even... it looks good? We'll find out when the reviews are released - but, man, I have a hard time believing this is going to be the same boring mess that was the Prequel Trilogy.
Anyway, I get the irony that I'm interested in Star Wars and bummed about Superman, but there you are. It's a funny world.