DC’s Movie Slate: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly
Comic book fans rejoice! Warner Brothers has announced a slew of movies (10 total!) that they’ll be releasing based on your favorite DC superheroes. The news definitely merits some fist pumps in the air so go ahead, treat yourself!…..Okay, done? Good, let’s take a closer look at what’s been announced because the choices are a little….odd.
Obviously, we all know about the upcoming Batman vs. Superman movie coming in 2016 but a second movie is also coming in 2016 centered around Suicide Squad. Never heard of it? I think that’s the point. Suicide Squad is a bit of an obscure book that’s about a bunch of “B” villians (seriously, the most famous members are probably Harley Quinn and Deadshot) who are sent by the government on impossible missions with the promise of amnesty if they succeed. This seems like a weird choice for Warner Brothers. Are they trying to emulate Guardians of the Galaxy and picking an obscure book they hope will be a huge success? If so I think this wasn’t the best choice.
Warner Brothers, can we talk for a second? Look, I get it, the Batman Begins Trilogy was a tremendous success for you. The dark and gritty feel of the movie worked very well for Batman. That does NOT mean that the rest of your movies all need to be dark and gritty. Don’t turn into a one trick pony, show us you can do something other than dark and gritty, please?
Moving on we have a Wonder Woman movie coming in 2017. Nothing surprising here. We know that Wonder Woman will be making an appearance in the Batman vs. Superman movie although to what extent is not clear. The movie in 2017 will give Warner Brothers a chance to flesh out the character and let her shine instead of playing second fiddle to Batman and Superman. Also coming in 2017 will be Justice League Part One. This is where I start to get a little worried. Who’s going to be in the JLA movie? Obviously Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, and Green Lantern but what about Flash, Martian Manhunter, and Aquaman? Clearly, Warner Brothers isn’t following the pattern set by Marvel of introducing it’s characters in stand alone films which then come together for an epic super group movie ala The Avengers. Furthermore, of the characters I just mentioned, Green Lantern’s movie (which wasn’t terribly successful when it premiered) came out in 2011! It will have been a full six years by the time Justice League comes out! In other words, most non-fans will probably have forgotten about him by this point. But Mike you say, Flash has his own TV show now! Surely people will be familiar with him! I would agree with you except for one problem, the actor on the TV show, Grant Gustin, is NOT going to be same actor playing him in the movie. Instead it will be Ezra Miller, try and figure that one out! Also, why is this titled “Part One”? This implies it won’t be a stand alone story and will end on a cliff hanger which is a bummer considering that Part Two of Justice League isn’t slated until 2019!
So what’s happening between 2016 and 2019? Well, in 2018 we’re going to get both a Flash and an Aquaman movie. Why these movies are coming after Justice League and not before is anyone’s guess. Although I’m quite curious to see if these movies will take place after the events of the Justice League movie or will act more like prequels. Additionally, 2019 will see the release of the Shazam movie. I was a little surprised that we won’t see the release of this movie for a full 5 years despite Dwayne Johnson already announcing he’ll be playing Black Adam.
Finally, in 2020, we’ll see the release of a Cyborg movie. Let’s be honest, Cyborg has never been that strong of a character and I personally think he’d make more sense to be in a Teen Titans movie of some sort. At least Warner Brothers has 6 years to get together a solid and compelling script. Oh, and another Green Lantern movie (after almost a decade since the last one!) which is better than nothing I guess. Worried about getting your Superman/Batman fix? Don’t, each will also get stand alone movies during this 10 year period although specific dates were not given at this time.
Overall, while I’m certainly glad that Warner Brother’s has announced all these comic book movies but their scheduling seems a bit haphazard. It feels like WB is just desperate to play catch up with Marvel. This is not the kind of endeavor one should ever rush. Marvel has spent years building and intertwining their movies to generate momentum and make us care and grow with these characters. It feels like Warner Brothers is going to be betting very heavily on the Batman vs. Superman movie and building off that single point. It’s a very risky gamble and I wish them the best of luck. They are going to need it.