DC Universe Animated Original Movies

Features, Shorts, Live-Action and Direct-To-Video
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Post by Randall » September 16th, 2007, 9:22 pm

For me, the best part of the comic storyline was the "four Supermen" angle, so I was sad to hear it got cut out. It hardly makes it all seem worthwhile without that part, but I understand the time limitations with the script, and the need to simplify. Personally, though, I would have bought four DVDs if they could have done a four-part miniseries instead!

Ben has spoken for this one to review, as he is a big Superman fan. I'll likely cover the next DCU one, since I'm more of a comics guy than he is.

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Post by Daniel » September 17th, 2007, 12:57 am

Ah right, I should've guessed! Well, hopefully this fairs better than Superman Returns.

Sad to hear the about that part being cut out. I can only imagine what its about, but it sure sounds interesting.

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Post by Randall » September 17th, 2007, 1:38 am

The "Reign of the Supermen" aspect of the story saw the original Superman being replaced after his death by four people who all claimed to be him--- a cyborg, a young clone, an emotionless Kryptonian version, and a man in a metal suit called Steel. Where the first "Death" segment was just a drawn-out fight scene, and "World Without a Superman" was intriguing enough, "Reign" was where the story really got interesting!

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Post by Ben » September 17th, 2007, 7:01 am

I just wrote to WB again over the weekend because none of our September screeners have shown up!

Yep, Dan, I'm doing Supes: Doom. I'll be coming to this totally fresh since while I truly adore the character, I haven't kept up with the comics and only know The Death Of Superman by reputation. To me it sounded like the publicity stunt that it was and I kind of shied away from it at the time.

So, while Rand might have been disappointed in the final animated version in comparing it to the comic, you'll be getting a view on this from someone - albeit a fan - unfamiliar with the storyline and so, hopefully, more in tune with whether this works as a movie or not.

The running time doesn't worry me...I'm sure they found a way to slim it down - and that's what I'll be looking for - but I'm excited by the 75 MIN documentary...that's pretty special for something like this.

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Post by Daniel » September 17th, 2007, 3:20 pm

So pretty much like me, eh? Cool! I can hardly wait for your take on it; Providing when you get the review copy.

And thanks for the info, Rand!

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Post by Meg » September 17th, 2007, 4:14 pm

Can't wait for this to come out! The Doomsday series was the first Superman storyline I read, I'm really excited to see what they do with it. (Although I am dissapointed they're not doing the Four Supermen bit...Ah well.)

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Post by Code Horror » September 17th, 2007, 11:03 pm

I'll be definately seeing Superman: Doomsday, I mean it just looks mind-blowing and I like that.
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Post by Daniel » September 18th, 2007, 4:52 pm

The Target edition comes with a card, and the Wal-Mart edition comes with a CD preview of the comic book. -- eh, was hoping for something more special from Target.

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Post by ShyViolet » September 18th, 2007, 6:00 pm

I actually owned that comic SPOILER
where he dies,
when it came out. :) (1993)

Reminds me now a little bit of the end of Singer's film (obviously ripped off parts of it) only good. :) Can't wait to see this version! :wink:


Here's Superman: Doomsday FAQ on AICN

http://www.aintitcool.com/node/34085
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Post by GeorgeC » September 19th, 2007, 3:45 am

Please,

The original comics the animated Doomsday film was based on are garbage. Like the typical early 1990s maxi-storyline it was a short-term fix to monthly sales that created more long-term headaches for the near-term sales boost it gave. It was very much a symptom of its time, and shortly thereafter, the entire comic book industry collapsed. Today, there are perhaps one-quarter as many comic shops in the entire United States as existed fifteen years ago.

Sure, "The Death of Superman" was not the entire cause of the collapse -- it was a combination of greed upon the part of comic shops, short-term speculators, stupid fanboys, and industry leaders who didn't care about the long-term impact of bad storytelling --, but it's one of the most visible signs of what was wrong with comics back then and the kind of stupidity that the comic book companies ought to be avoiding now. Sad to say, stupidity repeats itself in cycles like anything else and Marvel and DC are hell-bent on repeating the same mistakes they made 15 years ago.

The "Return of Superman" was handled a bit better than his death in comics, but not by much. Better than half the "super-characters" introduced during the "Reign of the Superman" storyline are no longer in use. Not much longevity there, eh?

It's a blessing in disguise that the animated film, Superman/Doomsday, has very little to do with the horribly drawn and awkwardly plotted comics it's supposedly based off of. Rather than featuring dozens of characters who have next-to-no-use other than cameos, it focuses on Lois Lane, Superman, Lex Luthor, and Doomsday. Thankfully, Doomsday doesn't speak!

People will either like the voice-casting or hate it depending on how much they appreciated the 1990s Superman animated series cast. At any rate, the new film is NOT set in the continuity of that series OR the comics. It has its own continuity and grabs a little bit from more recent versions of Superman in the comics and the Superman Returns movie. While it's a bit annoying to myself and other people who are not fans of the Joss Whedon TV shows, for once the stunt-casting of Whedonverse veterans isn't half-bad with the exception of James Marsten's Lex Luthor. Nobody beats Clancy Brown for the ultimate Luthor. Just not gonna happen in our lifetimes.

The animation is a level above the DC TV series but the character designs are a toss-up. I HATE the new Superman design, but Lois and Jimmy are okay. I never did understand why the lines on Superman's face and the radical Luthor redesign, but I guess Bruce Timm was getting tired of 12-year-old designs that still work.

The film features more deaths than all the episodes of Justice League Unlimited put together plus quite a bit of explicit murder. It definitely deserves a PG-13 rating but probably won't be the hardcore bloodfest that some misanthropes want to see. Stick to zombie films and fanfics if you're into that kind of crap.

Superman Doomsday is not the trainwreck that Superman: Brainiac Attacks was, but neither is it much better than the mediocre Marvel animated DVD movies, either. It looks to me that the film to look forward is going to be Justice League: The New Frontier. There's a great preview of it on the DVD. Too bad the end of January is still months away. This film looks and sounds way better than anything else Marvel or DC have planned for the future at this point...

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Post by GeorgeC » September 23rd, 2007, 8:17 pm

http://www.comicscontinuum.com/stories/ ... /index.htm

A bit more about The New Frontier on Comics Continuum plus a screen capture of Superman soaring above Earth.

Yes, that is the Golden Age/Fleischer outfit he's wearing. Same suit he wore in The New Frontier graphic novel.

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Post by GeorgeC » September 23rd, 2007, 8:29 pm

Okay,

Looks like I'm the only one who's actually seen the film.

It definitely wasn't the best way to open the line of animated videos based on DC Comics characters, but like I said not a complete trainwreck, either.

That said, the film's gotten a decidely mixed reception and mixed reviews online. I'm not sure if it's 50/50 (I get the feeling more people are in the not-likey camp), but it's not worse than the previous animated Superman film (Brainiac Attacks) was, either. (Gee, I don't know if the fact these two films had the same writer plays into their generally poor reception, either.)

The talent is still there at WB to do these films, right. They can basically go up from here, or remain at a level of mediocrity with the Marvel Superheroes animated DVDs.

I think The New Frontier is going to be decidely better than the films released direct-to-DVD the past 3-4 years...


P.S. -- There have been a number of distortions about Superman/Doomsday. First off, it's NOT the first Superman animated movie released on home video. That was Superman: Last Son of Krypton, the animated series pilot for Superman: The Animated Series (1996).

Superman/Doomsday is the THIRD Superman animated film.

This film and the others following it (Batman Anime, Wonder Woman, The New Frontier) really aren't the first series of DC animated films, period. That distinction really goes to the earlier Batman (Mask of the Phantasm, Sub-Zero, Mystery of the Batwoman, Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, World's Finest) AND Superman (Last Son of Krypton, Brainiac Attacks) direct-to-video films set in the respective 1990s animated continuities.

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Post by GeorgeC » September 23rd, 2007, 8:42 pm

Ben wrote:I just wrote to WB again over the weekend because none of our September screeners have shown up!


Ya don't think that might have had to do with the poor reception WB might've been half-expecting for the final S/D film? Usually, screeners and previews aren't sent out/held when a studio KNOWS the final product isn't going to go over well.

Now my local comic shop DID get their screener, but judging from what I've heard people in shops say -- especially anybody that's under-25 --, they tend to accept mediocre storylines and bad character designs and sloppy animation a bit better than older fans (the crowd that includes me). Those guys by-and-large accept just about any film that features superheroes because they eat that stuff to live. I don't know what it is with that crowd, but they have very low movie standards. It's about the punching and fights for those guys -- not the storylines and overall cinematic qualities of the films.

The latest Superman animated film isn't getting a great reception online, Ben. I think there's justification for that, too.

It's certainly not the storyline many people would have wanted for the first "big" direct-to-video animated project from WB Home Video.

It just wasn't a good storyline to adapt. There have got to be at least 20 other stories better to do than this one that would have involved less rewriting and slimming down. "Death and Return of Superman" was just a hideously overwritten storyline in the first place.

That said, I am still feeling optimistic for The New Frontier.

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Post by Daniel » September 23rd, 2007, 8:42 pm

Ooh, love the Superman pic!

And Jeremy Sisto will be Batman's new voice? Not bad, I think he'll do a good job.

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Post by GeorgeC » September 23rd, 2007, 9:01 pm

I have a great fondness for the Fleischer Superman. Simpler times, simpler storylines, but a great version of a great superhero nonetheless.

Any chance to see the old Golden Age suit in action is great by me.

Even the "Kingdom Come" Superman design was largely influenced by the Fleischer design. That's my next favorite alternate Superman design.

The combination of dark navy blue, with a slightly darker red, yellow shield outline with Red "S" and black background --! It's always worked for me for some reason.

I even have the Fleischer Superman statue put out by DC Direct a few years ago. I'm thinking of having one of my other Superman statues painted up like the Fleischer costume but with white temples on the hair.

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