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Is Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice on a Heading for Franchise Disaster?

The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) - How'd They Do It?

It shouldn't have workedImage Credit: SuperHeroMovie.com
The success of the MCU can be attributed (in my opinion) to a couple of major factors:
  • Taking the characters seriously
  • Putting together a team that knows and cares for the source material
  • Allowing the team to write for both the die hard fans and casual fans alike
  • THEY TOOK THEIR TIME!
  The Avengers did not bring in $1.5 billion dollars because they threw a bunch of heroes on the screen together as fast as they could. It took four years and six films to get that kind of Mojo composed. Batman v Superman intends to ram multiple major characters from the DC universe down our throats all at once. I can't help but see this image in my head: DCvMarvel In the MCU, we were introduced to each character and went along on their journeys with them. We got to know them as individuals. We got to explore their individual triumphs and failures. We got to experience their sacrifices and pain. We the audience let them woo us - and we didn't let them go all they way until the 6th date! And we were not disappointed, because we keep coming back for more. Proof that we as an audience wanted more came with the first movie in Phase 2 - Iron Man 3. This was the first of the Standalone Marvel hero movies to break the billion dollar barrier, bringing in an impressive $1.2 billion all on it's own. This led the way to not only the core heroes we've already seen having flourishing franchises, but to the development of new franchises in Ant Man and The Guardians of The Galaxy, not to mention bringing Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. to life and a group of new projects in conjunction with Netflix. Investing the time in the franchise and the characters can only bring about good things for D.C., If they would only stop trying to re-invent the wheel.

How Can the Creative Team Behind Batman v Superman Avoid Disaster?

I think the answer to this is relatively simple, STOP DIGGING A HOLE - dial it back. You've already announced the characters, now smartly put them to use. The story:
  • Needs to be about Superman and Batman (Yes I think giving Batman top billing in the Man Of Steel sequel is idiotic). Give them some tension, I think the best Superman/Batman moments are because of that tension - it is OK for them to not exactly like each other.
  • Should use Luthor as the mechanism to pit them against each other and have them overcome that manipulation to see through the farce. Give them each their moments and turn it around in the end to stop the true villain.
  • Should NOT use Diana as a main character. (I know this is a rough one, but hear me out.) Bring her in towards the end of the film, her attention drawn to the world outside of Themyscira by the events of Man of Steel and the current conflict. Her intention is to help, and use that meeting to lay the foundation for the Justice League. Save her for the Justice League Movie and a Standalone franchise.
  • Should NOT, for the love of all things nerdy - make Batman the grandpa of the future Justice League.
I get it, you want him to be old and seasoned a la Frank Miller, but I think it is time to take a page from Nolan's Batman franchise here. Without exactly leaning on his Batman universe, pick up where The Dark Knight Rises left off. He's been out of the game for a while, he's battered, tired, but well seasoned. You can have a more experienced Batman without making him 60 years old. A late 30's to early 40's character would serve this purpose just fine AND leave room for the Frank Miller confrontation story should they wish to do it later on. To DC and Warner Brothers, my plea to you is this - take your time and flesh this new universe out. These fans are not going anywhere. Respect the mythology from which these characters come and protect their continuity. You have the opportunity to make some of the greatest Super Hero movies of all time if only you would take your time. Don't give us the DC Cinematic Universe you think we need right now - give us, your audience, your fans the DC Cinematic Universe we deserve. Go to the next page and vote in our Poll... let us know what YOU think should happen and share your opinion in the comments below! batman-vs-superman-1-tptivirz0s-1024x768Image Credit: TokoWallpapers
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  • shaun says:

    lol this is stupid

    1. alphabetical order, neither character needs to be above the other, its obviously no longer a superman movie, its a justice league beginnings movie, why does the title matter whatsoever seeing as that is the case? you want it to be man of steel 2 yet contain 4 or 5 other justice league members and basically be “superman & the justice league” lol cause thats just worse, its not mos2 accept it

    2. the script was written with the intent of bale joining the cast, so they worked in the original story, why do you think the new batman is older and more withered? alot of superheros retire and go back to it, because he retired in bales movies dosnt mean thats where it ends, so we HAVE heard of and seen batman, just because he isnt mentioned in man of steel, he is seen in terms of the wayne logo and the call batman sign in the background, the wayne logo also is the exact one from bales movies, they would have revamped it if they didnt intend on using bales universe, so likelyhood is batman will come up at first as a legend, a myth, something only some people believe in, when an aliens ie superman lands on the planet, bruce is the first person to worry and start planning, same as he does in the comics and cartoons, he plans ahead, he tries to find weakness’s incase this all powerful being from another planet decides to basically enslave the human race because… he could if he wanted to, batman isnt trusting right away or even 100% ever, but you need to know your knowledge and background on these characters and the DC universe if you are going to judge it correctly

    3. also loved that frank millers story so im with you on that, but i already expected as much from the beginning because its the only realistic fight between the two that dosnt feel silly and wasted like “why didnt superman just do this and kill him” kind of thing, not that he would kill him but you get my point. but now you have to consider something, as ive said about the bale universe, batman is older, more withered, but smarter, the fight between to two works still in terms of millers stories, batman dosnt need to be a major part of the justice league movies, for a few reasons, firstly batman spent alot of time at the watchtower, he is like the leading tactical expert they have, his justice league stories where always best when he did very little yet had the most impact, for instance mid fight he would just disapear, you would wonder wtf but then usually find he was off doing something that was much more important tactically and something that usually saved everyone, like when doomsday is going to destroy earth prime and batman just slips away to stop it, or when he arms all the bombs and tells doomsday to let them all leave with kara or he wont tell him the disarm code, doomsday cant kill him, has to let them go, over, thats the batman we will see, older but smarter, less fighting (because lets face it, seeing a human fight a human amongst supermhumans having a huge battle just feels insignificant, they may restart batman but im not so sure yet, as they then would have to distance themselves from bales movies and theyve already not dont that

    4. wonder woman will just be her civilian self not wonder woman, lex will likely just be that, lex luther, not supermans arch rival, not yet, just a businessman, green lantern i reckon is a big no no, renolds movie was so bad, but theyre already considering a sequel, but i duno if it will be with him, maybe john stewart? as he fits in better i think with the justice league personally, plus we already know cyborg is gona be in the film, so i think were more likely to see his origins otherwise he wouldnt be cast as cyborg yet, just his footballing human self, keeping the surprise for longer

    5. nolan hardly paved the way with the batman movies, i know everyone raves about them and i did like them, but they wernt groundbreaking or anything, it was basically die hard with a batman lol, and they would never have fitted into the universe they are building now unless it was like “a long time ago in a gotham far far away” thats another reason i think batman being old makes sense, its the only way to tie a more realistic movie franchise into a superpowered superhuman metahuman world they are moving into now

    i think you need to relax, we comic fans can think of a million stories that would be amazing to follow and worry when they dont follow them, yet most marvel movies have done the same and veered off at times and still done amazingly well, have faith, dont get your hopes up, just wait for it and when it comes judge it then, DC need to not rush to catch up to marvel, and yes it could be their downfall, but i think theyre smarter than that after films like superman returns and green lantern, just look at the animated movies, almost all of them the past few years have been amazing, faultless.

    • Slider Slider says:

      Shaun,

      This is my opinion so I am not going to argue whether or not it is right or wrong, however I will say that immediately dismissing someone’s opinion as stupid because you disagree is a sign of narrow mindedness.

      That being said it seems to me that you have either entirely missed the point of what I was saying or did not read all the way through. As such I will answer your comments point for point.

      “1. alphabetical order, neither character needs to be above the other, its obviously no longer a superman movie, its a justice league beginnings movie, why does the title matter whatsoever seeing as that is the case? you want it to be man of steel 2 yet contain 4 or 5 other justice league members and basically be “superman & the justice league” lol cause thats just worse, its not mos2 accept it”

      1- In theater and film, and most entertainment media in fact – the order in which names appear is VERY important. It signifies the importance of the people or characters being named. (Please see Backstage.com for more info.) As for it not being a Superman movie, this is not how it was originally announced at San Diego Comic Con. It was announced as a Super hero team up movie between Superman and Batman. While it may be true that they are shifting course, I was given the expectation of a second installment in the franchise – which would have been MoS 2 and include Batman. This is what I was looking forward to. As for your statement:

      “you want it to be man of steel 2 yet contain 4 or 5 other justice league members and basically be ‘superman & the justice league’”

      You could not be more incorrect. I explicitly stated “How the hell do you introduce all of these characters and develop them in such away that the audience will give a crap about any of them?” and that “they are pushing too many characters into the mix too soon in order to segue into a Justice League team up movie.” Since it seems you did not quite get what I was saying, let me translate for you – THERE ARE TOO MANY CHARACTERS IN THIS MOVIE. So no, I do not want “superman & the justice league” I wanted a movie in which our newly introduced Superman encounters batman and they have to deal with each other. I don’t see the need for them to fight at this point. It’s too new and will have heavy implications on the JLA later that would be a mistake to ignore. So their shift in the focus of the franchise only backs up my opinion that – what was it I said? Oh yeah, that THEY’VE LOST FOCUS.

      “2. the script was written with the intent of bale joining the cast, so they worked in the original story, why do you think the new batman is older and more withered?”

      2- Can you cite a source on this? Because it has been fairly well publicized that both Nolan AND Bale have said that the Nolan Batman universe has reached an end. See here, here, and here if you need further clarification on that fact. (You’ll note some of these were written almost a year before the announcement at San Diego Comic Con). Given these statements I think it would have been pretty foolish on the part of the writing staff to put together a script counting on Bale reprising the role. As for not having heard of Batman – The Wayne Industries logo is not enough to equal an active Batman. Wayne Industries was around long before Bruce donned the cape and cowl. However, I concede this point to you. I had forgotten about the “Keep calm and call Batman” Easter-egg in the Man of Steel. Also I never insinuated that Batman would need to trust or even like Superman. In ANY universe where Batman and Superman are together I would expect Bruce to be suspect, and plan for a potential future confrontation. I would even be ok with Wayne having known about Kal-El/Clark Kent before he decided to step into the light, because he is after all – the greatest detective ever. But in DKR Batman is 55 years old and has been out of the superhero business for 10 years (per the DC Wiki). In Nolan’s Batman universe, Bruce comes home from college (presumably 18-22 yrs old) to take revenge on Joe Chill. After this fails he disappears for 7 years before returning to Gotham to take on the Bat persona (making him between 25 and 29 years old). Giving a few years for the events of Batman Begins and The Dark Knight (TDK) he would be at most 32 when he give up the Bat. In The Dark Knight Rises Wayne has been out of it for eight years after the events of TDK, which would make him about 40. This is plenty of weathering and seasoning for this character, and would work well going into this movie if they indeed decide to pull from Nolan’s universe.

      “3. also loved that frank millers story so im with you on that, but i already expected as much from the beginning because its the only realistic fight between the two that dosnt feel silly and wasted like “why didnt superman just do this and kill him”

      3- I’ll reiterate what I said in my first point – I don’t see the need for them to fight at this point. Part of the genius of Millers The Dark Knight Returns is that the fight between the two characters is the culmination of years of tense relations between the two. They KNOW each other. They respect each other, yet Bruce still does not see eye to eye with Clark. In their initial confrontation I’d rather see Bruce use his with against Clark than an all out brawl. This speaks to your description of him as a tactician – let him be tactical, let him use his brain, and plant the seed in the audiences mind that Bruce is preparing for a day when he would have to take batman on. Batman often works unilaterally, even when he is with the League and that is fine – but they should let the two develop a relationship before pitting them against each other in battle. I think that would set an expectation of Batman being primarily a physical character rather than an intellectual one in future installments of the franchise. That’s just my opinion.

      4. wonder woman will just be her civilian self not wonder woman, lex will likely just be that, lex luther, not supermans arch rival, not yet, just a businessman, green lantern i reckon is a big no no, renolds movie was so bad, but theyre already considering a sequel, but i duno if it will be with him, maybe john stewart? as he fits in better i think with the justice league personally, plus we already know cyborg is gona be in the film, so i think were more likely to see his origins otherwise he wouldnt be cast as cyborg yet, just his footballing human self, keeping the surprise for longer

      4- Your point about Wonder Woman simply being Diana in this film – Why? What purpose does it serve? This is one aspect of Comic Book hero stories I have never liked, why does everyone have to be so closely related? I think it is silly and detracts from the reality of the world they are building (Spider-Man is really bad about this, I mean Really? Black Cat is Osborne’s assistant?). I’ve also heard rumor of WW being Superman’s love interest, drawing from the New 52 continuity and I am just not interested in seeing that when they just introduced him to Lois Lane and the Daily Planet. I am ok with Lex not being a main villain, hearing what Jessie Eisenberg has to say about playing the character also gives me concerns. I had no problem with Ryan Reynolds performance as Hal Jordan’s Green Lantern, although it was not a good movie. I personally would prefer John Stewart, but again – not in this movie. It’s ok if they plant a couple of seeds for different characters but I still think the focus should be on Superman and Batman, with any other introductions coming after the main plot of the story is resolved.

      “5. nolan hardly paved the way with the batman movies, i know everyone raves about them and i did like them, but they wernt groundbreaking or anything, it was basically die hard with a batman lol, and they would never have fitted into the universe they are building now unless it was like “a long time ago in a gotham far far away” thats another reason i think batman being old makes sense, its the only way to tie a more realistic movie franchise into a superpowered superhuman metahuman world they are moving into now”

      5- On this point I could not disagree with you more. I get into why I feel that way here, but the short version is Nolan showed that a super hero story could be told in a modern, non campy format and be a financial success. Before his franchise we only had Christopher Reeve’s Superman The Movie and the first two Installments of Tim Burton’s Batman series which were far from perfect (and the rest were pure shit). Nolan’s Batman gave movie studios the courage (to be read the balls) to seriously back a super hero franchise, which has ushered in the last decade of super hero based movies, many which have been FANTASTIC and have brought scores of new fans to these properties. That is the trail Nolan blazed.
      As for you feeling I need to relax and not get my hopes up – I don’t know what age bracket you are in, but I grew up with these characters and seeing real films in which they are portrayed well is extremely important to me. So yes, I get worked up over this. A failure here could really jeopardize future DC franchises that I would love to see come to life. It is OK to veer a bit, but changing the continuity of the characters is a major deviation, and a cause for concern.

      One thing you and I completely agree on is the recent animated movies have been amazing. Gail Simone’s Wonder Woman, the adaptation of Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns, Superman: Red Son – all have been great. I just really want to see that greatness come to the big screen.

      Thank you for your comments.

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