Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Superman/Batman: Apocalypse

Year 8, Day 104 - 4/13/16 - Movie #2,304

BEFORE: Well, this is it, I've reached the end of the Batman and/or Superman chain.  I'm sure there are a few animated films that I missed, but these were the ones that ran on cable and made it into my movie collection.  I'm suffering from DC Heroes burnout, and I need to move on to other topics.  Like Marvel superheroes, coming up next week.  But first, some sci-fi, then a couple crime films.  It'll all make sense in a week or two - I know, I say that a lot.   But I really prioritized this time, many of the films coming up in the next 3-4 weeks have been deemed to be the most important or significant ones left on the watchlist.  After that, I can't be held responsible for what rises to the top of the list. 

Kevin Conroy and Tim Daly carry over as the voices of Batman and Superman, respectively.

THE PLOT:  Batman discovers a mysterious teen-aged girl with super-human powers and a connection to Superman. When the girl comes to the attention of Darkseid, the evil overlord of Apokolips, events take a decidedly dangerous turn.

AFTER: I think this might be based on the storyline in "Superman/Batman" comics that came right after "World's Finest" (which got turned into last night's movie, "Public Enemies") because that giant meteor headed "straight at" Earth (like that's even possible...) was a chunk of Krypton that also was carrying the spaceship of Kara, aka Supergirl.  No, this doesn't make much sense, because if she was in a spaceship, why is the spaceship part of the meteor?  Did the meteor hit her spaceship, or did her spaceship never launch properly, so it was still on the planet when Krypton blew up?  If so, how did the rocket not get damaged?  

Apparently she got into the rocket, which protected her from the explosion, and the life support and/or suspended animation got turned on, but then the planet blew up before her launch, and that chunk of the planet ended up being aimed right at where Earth was going to be, years later.  That's quite a series of unlikely coincidences.  But hey, it's a comic book, these things happen.  Wikipedia confirms at least some of this as her back-story, she was Superman's (Kal-el's) cousin, she was a teen when he was a baby, but her rocket got stuck in an asteroid, and she arrived on Earth years after him, but he was now older than her, thanks to cryogenics or whatever.

This is how they brought Supergirl into the DC universe, at least before the last reboot.  I don't know how they introduced her in the "New 52" continuity - but that's the problem with these animated films, especially if you follow the current comics, these films are only 6 or 7 years old, but they're already outdated.  Fans barely have a chance for these stories to register before the universe they take place in gets ripped to shreds and pieced back together again.  How are characters supposed to get loyal followers or fans, when their back-stories keep changing?  Whoops, sales are down 5 percent, better cancel that book, completely re-work the character and re-launch them with a new number 1 issue!   

You might also consider this film as a little peek into the future of the DC Movie Universe, in line with the "flash-forwards" we were shown during "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice".  Batman had a dream/vision of Earth in flames, being attacked by flying parademons - that's the work of Darkseid, but he probably won't show up in a movie until the 2nd Justice League movie or so.  Kind of like Thanos in the Marvel Cinema Universe, they keep teasing him, but when's he gonna appear for real?   

I never really glommed on to the "New Gods" section of the DC Universe, created by Jack Kirby back in the day.  Darkseid was a really important character around the time of "Crisis on Infinite Earths", but that was just before I began reading DC Comics regularly (I only read Batman, Superman & Justice League).  So I know a bit about Orion and Granny Goodness and Miracle Man and Big Barda, but only from them making guest appearances in the comics I've read.  

Also starring the voices of Andre Braugher (last seen in "City of Angels"), Susan Eisenberg, Summer Glau, Edward Asner (last seen in "They Call Me Mister Tibbs!"), Julianne Grossman, Rachel Quaintance, Andrea Romano, Salli Saffioti, Tara Strong (last heard in "Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 2").  

RATING: 4 out of 10 hell spores

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