Well readers, before we get going, I have some good news and some bad news. The bad news is that I’ve decided to postpone the first article in the “Real-Life Heroes” series. I know some people were looking forward to the idea, but I’m afraid it just got bumped by the news from San Diego Comic-Con this weekend. Which leads me to the good news, I’ll still be debuting a new format for the column! This is one I’ve been meaning to start for a while now, and with the news from this weekend in mind, I’d say the timing couldn’t be better to start.
As you may have guessed from the title, this is going to be my pitch for a certain property. It’ll detail how to show our heroes in the possible light, and how I think it could be really successful.
Now unless you were living under a rock, or somewhere else without internet or any other kind of media, you know that Warner Bros. officially announced that their next DC Comics project to arrive on the silver screen will be about the Man of Steel finally crossing paths with the Caped Crusader himself. If they do this right, DC could finally start to really compete with Marvel.
I’ve only had the past three days to think about this, so my vision isn’t exactly perfect. That being said, I’ve got some pretty strong idea for both characters and I like a lot of what I’ve come up with. I also decided that I’ll be separating this pitch into two halves. The second half will be out next week. Sorry if you wanted to read the whole thing at once, but at this point, we all know just how long-winded I can be!
So without further ado, here’s my pitch for Superman/Batman!
The film opens with a house fire in the suburbs of Metropolis. Superman arrives and saves some children trapped in the burning house. The crowd that’s gathered still doesn’t know what to make of him, and he can sense this. Despite that, he’s very polite and treats everyone with respect and courtesy. I think it would be a nice touch if he saved the family photo album as well. This would show that no task is too big or small for Superman to help out with, if he can.
The next scene would see the new Batman take down some criminals in Gotham. He does it quite efficiently, but not without his touch for theatricality. After all, he still needs to keep building his own urban legend. During the fight he seriously injures some of the criminals.
In the Daily Planet’s newsroom, the staff discusses how Superman’s actions are slowly changing the public’s opinion of him. In the same meeting, some of the other reporters bring up both the return of Bruce Wayne and his company’s charitable endeavors, and the mysterious “Batman.” Perry’s skeptical on the Batman front, thinking it’s probably just some street warfare, but he does think that the Wayne story has potential. However, most of the reporters are averse to spending any time in Gotham, because of its high crime rate.
That evening Superman is contacted by General Swanwick from the first film. Swanwick introduces him to General Sam Lane, one of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and Lois’ estranged father. Lane informs Superman that the Batman is real. Superman is reluctant to do this, saying that while he’s happy to help out in any kind of natural disaster, he’s not the government’s lapdog. Lane tries to persuade him that it’s more likely that Batman’s just an insane vigilante and that bringing in someone like him would go a long way towards helping the public accept Superman, and it would convince the skeptics in Washington that Superman is indeed right for the USA. Superman says that he’ll think about it. As he leaves, Lane tells Swanwick that he’s not satisfied with Superman’s response, and he still doesn’t trust him. He then requests to speak with Amanda Waller.
After talking with Lois and his mother, Clark does decide to go to Gotham. Lois offers to come with him to cover the story. Perry assigns Clark the Batman piece since he’s the new guy, and gives Lois the Wayne assignment and says that he’s already set up an interview for her.
That night in Gotham, Alfred speaks to Bruce in the Batcave before Bruce makes his rounds as Batman. Bruce has the television on and sees Superman on the news. Alfred compliments Superman on how he handled himself in certain situations, but Bruce has no respect for him. He thinks that Superman is dangerous, and can’t be trusted. Alfred points out that it’s likely the two of them will cross paths soon, and that if they have to fight, Bruce should be prepared. Bruce says that he already has a few tricks up his sleeve if that should ever happen. Alfred also reminds him that he has an interview with Lois Lane, and shouldn’t let his guard down in front of her. Lois has a reputation for being a very tough inquisitor, and it’s tough to successfully lie to her.
When Lois and Clark get to Gotham, Clark is surprised at just how different it is from Metropolis. Their economy is in the toilet, and it’s very difficult to find jobs there, which results in a high crime rate. Not long after they arrive Clark is forced to change into Superman to avert an accident, which alerts the city to his presence. Afterwards, the two of them separate to cover their respective stories.
Lois goes to Wayne Enterprises, and meets Bruce Wayne. She asks questions about his long time away from Gotham, his eclectic studies at various universities, his social life, and his plans for the company. Bruce plays coy about the first two subjects, and Lois can tell he’s not telling the truth, but he comes alive when he discusses his plans to help redevelop Gotham City into the thriving metropolitan area that it once was.
Meanwhile, Bruce goes to the GCPD where meets Commissioner Loeb, and the recently promoted Jim Gordon. Gordon is the star of the GCPD, having busted some high-profile cases lately. Loeb and Gordon both are certain that Batman exists, but unlike Loeb, Gordon doesn’t think that Batman’s a menace. While talking with Clark, Gordon tells him that he’s been contacted by an anonymous source who has given him hints in how to proceed with these cases. He confides in Clark that he has a suspicion that the source could be the Batman himself.
That night Superman makes a patrol across Gotham City, and he comes across a few different crimes in quick succession, noting that he’s busier in Gotham than he ever was back in Metropolis. It isn’t long before he finds Batman in the midst of a fight with some criminals. Batman is playing very rough with these criminals, and Superman intervenes.
Much to his surprise, Batman pulls out a few moves that effectively run rings around him, but only for a moment. Superman gets a hold of him and throws him away from the criminals. This of course angers Batman, since he was trying to hunt down their boss, and Superman cost him weeks’ worth of hard work. Superman is rather angry with Batman’s tactics likening it to torture. Batman replies, “At least I didn’t snap his neck.”
This makes Superman lose his cool, and he throws Batman through a window. He follows after him, and when he stands over his seemingly lifeless body, he starts to X-Ray underneath his mask, but much to his surprise, there’s a thin layer of lead interwoven through the fiber, preventing Superman from seeing anything underneath it. At that moment, Batman pulls a Batarang from his belt, and slashes at Superman with it. It actually cuts Superman’s skin, and Superman lets go in shock. Batman aims for vulnerable areas like pressure points, but after a second, Superman refocuses, and knocks the blade from Batman’s hand. Then he reaches out and rips Batman’s mask apart to reveal that it’s Bruce Wayne underneath.
Batman reaches out and sprays a small bit of gas in Superman’s face. It’s a solution similar to Kryptonian atmosphere, which Superman can’t breathe. It temporarily incapacitates Superman, and when he comes to, Batman is long gone.
Superman flies back to the hotel room that he shares with Lois to tell her what he learned. Lois isn’t readily available when he gets back. While he’s waiting to speak to her, the hotel phone rings and he answers it.
Batman is on the line. “Now we’re even…Clark.”
Superman is shocked. “How did you -” But Batman cuts him off.
“Doesn’t matter, Clark. There’s only one thing that matters now. You tell anyone who I am, and I mean anyone, and I’ll expose you too.”
That’s it for Part 1! Tune into Most Heroic next Wednesday to find out what happens next!