Shortpacked! (shortpacked) wrote,
Shortpacked!
shortpacked

They're alike, but different! Different but alike!

Shortpacked!: The way to a man's heart...

So I totally picked up Superman Batman: Public Enemies this morning as promised. And the Best Buy version that came with the little Batman figurine, no less! (I was a little worried it be one of those retarded deals where the exclusives only come with the single-disc version. Thankfully, this was not the case.)

That's the figurine to the right. This is a very low angle, so he looks much bigger than he really is! He's about 3 inches tall, at my estimate. He's articulated at the neck and shoulders. Simple rotational joints. Not bad, really, for what it is. (This photo narrowly avoided a Hitler salute. That's basically all Batman's shoulder articulation is good for, especially since his palms are open and facing down.) Paint's good, sculpt's pretty neat, it does have limited articulation... and I got it and the accompanying DVD double-disc set for just under $20. Not bad at all. (Yeah, it rang up below $20, despite being listed at like $22 or $25.)

The movie itself? It's hard to talk about it in any helpful detail without spoilers, especially since I'd want to contrast it with the source material, so I'll make some brief comments here and then put the real spoilers under an LJ-cut.

First of all, the copy on the back of the DVD packaging claims that the feature "seethes with political intrigue." That is hilarious. That nugget out of the way, I have to say it was an enjoyable movie. It does play a lot with the source material. This is an adaptation, not a direct translation, make no mistake about it. You can probably imagine the stuff they left out. It's pretty easy to guess. But it was a fun romp that made sense most of the time, and you got to see superheroes with giant, bulging abs fighting a lot.


Now for the spoilers. About that political intrigue. They almost would have had some, but it would have been an entirely different movie. See, the world was plunged into chaos - economically, culturally, etc. But then Lex Luthor stepped in, was elected President, and actually fixed everything. In three years. There weren't even any wars! (Of course, during Luthor's actual presidency in the comics, there were plenty of wars. One particularly huge one, in fact.) But Superman was reluctant to trust Luthor. He refused to admit that Luthor had been a good President. Captain Atom reminds him that, dude, he fixed everything. He's been an amazing President so far. How about that? Despite being evil?

And that would have been a pretty interesting angle! How do you, as Superman, deal with that? But, thankfully, that was abruptly sidestepped when it was revealed that, phew, Lex Luthor is insane. We don't have to consider any of those ramifications at all! He really does want to kill everybody. Glad we could scoot everything right back into the black and white. That was a close call.

As I suggested you could guess, all the time travel from the source material is gone. There is no berzerker Kingdom Come Superman traveling from the future to kill himself before he made a mistake that would destroy the world. Captain Atom does not warp to the future, learn humanity's fate if he does not intervene, and return to our present to save the day. No, someone else takes his place. And they miraculously don't die, unlike Captain Atom in the source material. Which is too bad, because that was one of the better parts of the source material. This felt a little cheap, by comparison.

The comic also does not feature any of the Batman or Superman family folks in a White House raid. Sorry, folks, no Nightwing, no Steel's daughter, and especially no weird Supergirl lady I'm not sure exactly what her deal is. Oh, and no Connor Kent. No Connor Kent, having lustful thoughts about Power Girl, who we find out in a subsequent comic book arc is once again technically his cousin.

And that subplot about Batman thinking Metallo might be the man who killed his parents? That was completely excised, too. Which is good, because that wasn't even very well-addressed in the source material. It was like the poorest excuse to give Batman a personal stake in the storyline. It's brought up, forgotten for five issues, and then at the last minute Lex Luthor's all "ha ha ha I planted that evidence it was all fake," the end. Good riddance to that subplot, really.

But the fight with Metallo in the graveyard is preserved, if under completely different circumstances. Batman and Superman still fight dozens of random DC comics villains in Washington, D.C., only to get interrupted by Captain Atom's group of superheroes. (Still including Katana, Starfire, Black Lightning, etc...) Lex Luthor still makes out with Amanda Waller! And yeah, the little Japanese kid Toy Man and his Composite Superman/Batman spaceship are still there in the finale.

An interesting addition to the group of random villains that Batman and Superman fight are three members of the Secret Six! I'm pretty sure Bane, Catman (in his Secret Six costume), and Deadshot were not there in the source material. Oh man, if only Ragdoll and the chicks were there, I'd be orgasming right now. Ha ha ha ha ha. Still. Fun cameos. So many people show up in here who haven't really been seen in DC's recent animated works. Powergirl gets a major part. Major Force is an obscure guy who gets a lot of time. I've always been a fan of that particular iteration of Toyman. And, hey, adult (and mostly voiceless) Starfire! Black Lightning! Katana! Lady Shiva! And everyone gets to fight. It's pretty spectacular, if that's the kind of thing you're after.

Though I enjoyed the movie, one thing I really thought was sorely missing was Lex Luthor's crazy monologue from the final battle, about how, true to Teddy Roosevelt's words, he has literally become a "very big stick"! So goofily over the top. I would like to have seen it.

So, hey, there's supposed to be this Target-exclusive line of toys about this movie by Mattel. Anybody know when those are supposed to show up? Is there a street date or something? The two Targets I hit today had nuffin'.
Tags: batman, dc, movies, superman
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