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Comment count is 39
Mr. Purple Cat Esq. - 2013-10-18

Bruce Timm directed a lot of Batman beyond (Which was best cartoon). I know this cus I watched the version with the commentary.

Mr. Purple Cat Esq. - 2013-10-18

Also did ye read 'all star superman' ?
One of few actual DC comics I've ever read (apart from a few random alan moore things + the dark knight returns) But its awesome. Highly recommend!

Xenocide - 2013-10-18

All-Star is probably the most notably absent omission in this. That comic is a Superman tribute on par with this video.

Nominal - 2013-10-18

I tried watching Batman Beyond after all the recommendations here.

While it's not as bad as the xTreme 90s intro sequence would have you believe, I wouldn't even call it decent. Most of it is dull filler action sequences. I don't think The Animated Series ever spent more than 3 minutes an episode on fight scenes, Batman Beyond felt like it devoted 15. And most of TAS was about Batman buying time until he figured out a weakness. BB mostly kills time until he gets lucky.

When BB did get good, it was almost always by invoking the old TAS characters like Bruce Wayne and Mr Freeze and The Joker. And since Batman is only as interesting as the villains, BB suffered a lot there. Shriek was the same guy as Spellbinder who was the same as the dogfighting ring guy. TAS villains all had some pathos or interesting quirks to them. The only interesting BB original villain was Mad Stan, and he was just a b-plot side character who got maybe 4 minutes of screentime for the whole series.

When everyone lists favorite TAS episodes, it's usually stuff with interesting setups like villains swapping "almost got him" stories or some kind of Rashomon nod. BB never really had any of that. One episode had Terry disappear and you think it's going to be a neat mystery with the other characters trying to find him and make do without Batman, but they ditch that interesting possibility a minute later so they can have more time-killing action sequences.

*rant over*

candyheadrobot - 2013-10-18

All Star the comic is what actually got me paying attention to Superman again, Grant Morrison is about the only person I can deal with doing the character though, his Action Comics run is flawless too. It's too bad that Snyder and what's that horrible screen writer's name, didn't actually take the cues from Superman Earth One, which they lifted most of Man of Steel from all to modernize the Donner-verse. It's actually another good Superman book, but alas. Bruce Timm is always going to be great for his DC work, and the design he brought to animation, but geez I wish he didn't have anything to do with Snyder. That said this video is okay.

@ Nominal: I agree slightly, but I think you're grading a little too harshly there. TAS has lore galore, everyone knows Batman in some way, so they could incorporate a myriad of storytelling devices and it would make sense cause Batman. Heck the episodes weren't even chronological, no one even knows what time period they're supposed to be in. BB had to establish Terry's Batman from the ground up, plus with stuff like the time establishment, the stories could only go so far. I'll admit if they pulled something like a Blade Runner homage, it would have been cool, but not when you're trying to make a character stand on it's own.

candyheadrobot - 2013-10-18

Oh right, and the fighting was what everything was about at that time. See the New Batman Adventures and Superman, which ran around the same time, they're all fighty, very little story. Justice League had the best balance imo, but TAS was all leaps and bounds.

Bort - 2013-10-18

Morrison can do an awesome Superman, but there is a weakness with Morrison writing: he can't write Superman unless he's doing a thing, for example nostalgia or exploring the concept of fifth dimensional magic. Also, a gripe with "All-Star Superman": Dr. Quintum was actually an evil mad scientist, and if you don't believe me, take a look at all those living beings he created, but tweaked their minds so they wouldn't mind being disposable. This is the man Superman trusts more than any other.

Geoff Johns, of all people, has a pretty good handle on Superman, and can tell a Superman story where he isn't trying to do a homage to Superdickery.

Scott Snyder over on "Superman Unchained" is showing a lot of promise too, but he hasn't completed his first arc yet so it's hard to say. Snyder has the advantage of actually teaching writing at the university level, which is to say, he knows about fancy book-larnin' like "themes" and "story structure". I'm not sure how many comic book writers have even studied that sort of thing; I am convinced of a few who have not.

Hooker - 2013-10-18

I saw Man of Steel recently and was shocked by what a lukewarm and lifeless mess it was. Not as bad as the Kevin Spacey one, but man.

Hooker - 2013-10-18

In particular, the tone is all over the place, an worst in the first five minutes of the film. It seems to want the Batman Begins-style direness, but it also takes place on a Krypton where everything is bizarre and, lacking any symbolic connection to Earth, pointless. It reminded me most of the horrid Green Lantern from last year.

Rodents of Unusual Size - 2013-10-18

At least the last Superman had good performances from Spacey and Parker Posey. Man of Steel had great effects but much like Clash of the Titans and any of Snyder's works it missed any of the humanity. It was just a cavalcade of visuals and steeped with the sort of depressing macho bravado with no heart to it. I was actually depressed watching it.

Binro the Heretic - 2013-10-18

And it all began with a couple of nice Jewish boys from the Midwest.

Xenocide - 2013-10-18

One of whom was inspired to write about a bulletproof man after his father was killed in a robbery.

So Superman's real origin is actually Batman's origin.

unknown specimen - 2013-10-18

I'm kind of surprised Timm didn't attempt to throw in a Kirby style superman. That being said this gets five stars alone for including so much as one image of the 90s "mullet" superman.

Merzbau - 2013-10-18

Giant Monster Jimmy Olsen is a pretty good summary of the Kirby era, I thought. Did anybody else find the Alex Ross bit really jarring, though? Just another reminder of how everything Alex Ross does looks like paunchy middle-aged cosplayers in static poses.

(My points are all for the Warhol gag.)

fatatty - 2013-10-18

I didn't realize Timm was in on this, the last place I saw it posted it just said Snyder. He's definitely the best thing that's happened to DC in a while.

Agreed on Alex Ross, never was a huge fan. He's technically great but his stuff always seemed so lifeless, and so obviously straight photo reference. There's more life in anything Timm's done in his completely stripped down style.

unknown specimen - 2013-10-19

I've always liked Ross' writing and pinup work. His character design is a bit off but when he's doing his Sterenko style covers he's at his best.

Basically the further away from reality he gets the better he is.

Xenocide - 2013-10-18

Some people say he's a relic of an earlier time, that his adventures seem dated and childish in our cynical age. To hell with those people. As far as I'm concerned, Beepo the Super-Chimp will ALWAYS be a true hero.

Seriously though, this video is amazing.

Seven Arts/H8 Red - 2013-10-18

Mort Weisinger was an asshole as an editor, yet a lot of the classic Superman elements - Supergirl, Metallo, Brainiac, the Legion of Super-Heroes, Kandor, Bizarro, the Super-Pets - were introduced under his editorship. Hell, the 1990s versions of Superman-Red and Superman-Blue are in the video. I'm surprised DC even WANTS people to remember the electric blue Superman.

There was a lot of goofy shit in the 1950s and 1960s, but then, the Superman comics were aimed at children. The modern era has its fair share of goofy shit, but DC has intimated that its main titles are squarely for adults, so there's a mature, perfectly logical reason why Superman bangs Wonder Woman now.

BillLumbergh - 2013-10-18

montages are the only thing snyder is good at. perhaps he should be a montage director.

Nominal - 2013-10-18


Kabbage - 2013-10-18

Actually, now that I think about it, that sweet-ass montage at the very start of Dawn of the Dead was by far the best part of the movie.

Nominal - 2013-10-19

The entire movie was the best part about the movie.

cognitivedissonance - 2013-10-18

It seems to me that some enterprising Hollywood executive should just recognize that "Mask of the Phantasm" was the best Batman movie ever made, and just remake that, word for word. It seems like Christopher Nolan should've just done that (yeah, yeah, Heath Ledger was dead, but it's a better idea than CGI-Tattoo-Removal Tom Hardy wearing a vacuum cleaner attachment on his head and ranting about Obamacare).

Xenocide - 2013-10-18

The best ones are probably Superman: Birthright, Superman For All Seasons, Superman: Red Son, Lex Luthor: Man of Steel, and Grant Morrison's Action Comics.

Stopheles - 2013-10-18

I got a copy of a book called SUPERMAN: THE UNAUTHORIZED BIOGRAPHY as a gift recently and highly HIGHLY recommend it. It goes into a ton of historiographical tidbits of the character, and as such reflects the changing role of superheroes as a whole in American pop culture (which makes it pretty much exactly the book I've been looking for).

I'm not a fan of the character, particularly, but am becoming a lot more aware of why so many people are, and I'm probably going to start looking for some good old Superman books to check out. Any recommendations aside from ALL-STAR?

EvilHomer - 2013-10-18

Can you give us the Cliffs Notes version? I'd be interested in hearing some good arguments in favor of Superman, especially if they're convincing enough to get a skeptic on board.

Personally, I hate him; I see him as little more than a fascist masturbatory fantasy and, like most of his pals at the CCA-loving DC Comics, his stories do little else other than glorify the police state. I also find him to be unbearably boring. He has no real personality to speak of, lacking any compelling flaws or weaknesses, and worse, his powers are so dull and overpowered that there's never any tension to the action.

At least with comic book characters like Batman or Bizarro or Jimmy Olsen, you have some exciting conflicts and character development; you know, real drama, that only occasionally insults your intelligence. But Superman? He's the king of Mary Sues: a one-dimensional, unrelateable, thoroughly uninteresting author-fulfillment fantasy.

Bort - 2013-10-18

Up above I mentioned a title called "Superman Unchained"; I wouldn't go as far as expecting you to like it, but it would speak to some of what you're saying. Turns out the US Army has had an extraterrestrial in their employ for 75 years now, who's more powerful than Superman. And the dude who's in charge of the program in question thinks Superman is a coward, for NOT using his power to take down dictators and the like.

FYI, DC hasn't adhered to the CCA at all for a few years now:


The appeal of Superman, at least to me, is that he keeps trying to bring about a better world; he's not just in it to stop bad guys, but also to bring out the best in people. So these days, Clark Kent is every bit as important as Superman, trying to use words to do what Superman cannot. As for physical challenges, that's actually pretty easy to write around: come up with problems that can't be solved through brute force. Purely physical threats tend to be the most boring anyway (for example Doomsday).

Which brings us back to the army's superhuman: things are shaping up so that it will almost certainly be not just about who's stronger, but who's more right about how power is to be used. (My money is on Superman's status quo being vindicated, spoiler.)

Nominal - 2013-10-19

I liked Superman vs The Elite on on netflix well enough. Story was okay, action scenes were great. It only stumbled a bit at the end.

To me, what makes Superman boring isn't his character or invincibility, it's pulling shit out of his ass. I'm fine with him being as powerful as he is as long as his abilities are defined with boundaries. It's when he starts pulling stuff out of his ass that I lose interest.

Examples: A ton of slugfest fights that end when he decides to use his heat vision to effortlessly win, or a Doomsday slugfest that ends when he lifts him into orbit and tosses him into space. Why didn't he do that to begin with? Or stuff like (spoilers for Superman vs The Elite) where he uses heat vision to perform surgery on a villain's brain to burn out the part that gave him powers, from a quarter mile away, through the villain's eyeball. Made up magical shit.

I think The Flash is actually a more boring character than Superman. At least Superman can be presented as a flying, thinking Hulk. Flash's whole entire character is just magic ass pulling shit that can instantly end fights and the only tension is when the writer's suddenly decide for him not to be magical.

Nominal - 2013-10-19

Oh, I almost forgot the infamous reversing the Earth to turn back time. Another "why doesn't he do that for everything?" magical ass-pulling moment.

Bort - 2015-03-09

"To me, what makes Superman boring isn't his character or invincibility, it's pulling shit out of his ass."

He could probably charge .99 a minute to let people watch.

Yeah, writers focus way too much on his powers and make stupid decisions on how to use them (such as the examples you cited). The powers aren't what make Superman interesting, they're primarily the means to an end, and that end is Superman doing his best to make the world a better place for everyone.

The scene from "All-Star Superman" that everyone loves is where Superman talks the suicidal girl into not giving up. No powers required; even if Superman couldn't fly, he could have used a ladder.

mouser - 2013-10-18

Needs a Canada tag.

TeenerTot - 2013-10-18

Where's the silly Lois & Clark version?

duck&cover - 2013-10-18

"Superman vs. Muhammed Ali": I remember that issue.

exy - 2013-10-18

Looks a bit like Hitler when he's charging the camera.

EvilHomer - 2013-10-18

So he does. Fittingly enough.

Bort - 2013-10-18

YES!! Atari Superman, the best Superman of them all!

Merzbau - 2013-10-18

no Superman 64 no sale

MacGyver Style Bomb - 2013-10-18

Brief shot of Lois Lane as a black woman.

Juice Eggs McKenna - 2013-10-19

They really think we're going to buy into the no-red-shorts thing don't they?

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