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 Post subject: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-22 11:48am
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The Elite are an obvious parody of the Authority - Manchester Black is a pastiche of Jenny Sparks, Menagerie is a pastiche of the Engineer, Hat is a parody of The Doctor etc.

So straight away you know that the Elite would be the anti heroes who kill, and they are going to end up against Supes.

So what was nice about this.

1. They didn't edit out the expletives, so Manchester Black fires away almost as much as Gordon Ramsay does on a bad day. Coupled with his British accent and you have a winner.

2. The scene where the Elite execute the Atomic Skull was well done, and encapsulated what was different between their philosophies and Superman's.

3. How does it feel to be deconstructed? That line cracked me up.

4. Superman defeats Manchester Black by lobotimising him (well a lobe which normal humans don't have and gives him his powers).

I was however disappointed that the Elite did things I doubt even the Authority would do. For example they destroyed parts of their ship (which is a living organism) because it was inconvenient (the part destroyed governed emotion in the ship), and they even started advocating a might makes right type of philosophy. The Authority had gone up against foes more powerful than themselves, and did so because they felt they were in the right. The Elite didn't even care for collateral damage.

Now the reason they did this was to show that the Elite weren't good guys, but I felt it would have been more difficult to tell, if they didn't. I mean what if the Elite just executed criminals? What happens if they weren't really criminals before becoming the Elite (a sort of poisoning the well against their position). What happens if they did try to save civies and tried to prevent collateral damage? What happens if Manchester Black explained that the pain inflicted on reading the terrorists' minds was a side effect of his telepathy, and if he could, he would do it without causing them pain? They would still be playing judge, jury and executioner, but it would have made their position more nuanced and the moral conflict between Supes and the Elite would be more grey than what was potrayed.

However, overall I enjoyed this DCAU cartoon.



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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-22 12:55pm
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Hm.

There's probably something I'm missing; comic books are not my main thing. But a lot of works that set out to deconstruct something start by having that thing go to its logical extreme.

Here, the self-righteous, murderous antihero is the target for the wrecking ball, so the authors tried that. "We're right, they're wrong, and we're badass enough to kill them for it" is easily taken to its extreme as "the rules can go to hell, we have power and we'll use it as we see fit." So it's not about "which of these two philosophies of heroism is right, and which is wrong, decide for yourself." The authors have a very clear idea about that- that exaggerated morality is better than amorality.

You can reasonably criticize that, yeah.

I wonder how this compares to Kingdom Come.

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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-22 05:11pm
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I rather enjoyed this movie. Showing that supporting the people with power to do whatever they want will end up with people doing whatever they want, and that it isn't something that should be admired.

At first, I rather disliked the animation style of the movie, as I felt it was a rather simplistic look and below par compared to previous DC Animated features, but then I realized that was kind of the point. It's meant to be cartoony, showing how that world would look under the pressure terrorists and supervillains, and the response powered vigilantes would cause.



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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-22 06:11pm
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Looked positively brilliant compared to 'New Frontier' if you ask me.
The title sequence totally stunk but they made up for it by reusing the theme music from 'Doomsday'. If I can't have Daly, Newburn makes an adequate Clark and Pauly Perette sounded a lot like Anne Heche did in 'Doomsday'.
The Elite went from 'We deal with the bad guys permanently' (for which there are damned good reasons wether or not we in the Tights Brigade want to admit it) to 'let's kill Superman and rule the world' for no real discernible reason. Sure, power corrupts and all that, but there was no real transitional period showing that. They superhero around if a bit roughly (and frankly after using the surrounding buildings to rough up Atomic Skull Clark's not in a position to chastice anybody for being careless about collateral damage), show up at Clark's to tell him to stay out of their way, and when he predictably says 'No' they tell him 'Yes you will or we'll kill you'-and decide to make a media spectacle of it too.
I did love the final fight sequence where it appears Clark pulled out all the stops and went 'you wanna play hardball, we play hardball'.
The 'You're screwed' speech after his apparent death was awesome, and this finally showed just how screwed you are if you're up against the Boy Scout (as I can testify from personal experience).
Not the best of the DC DTVs but easily one of the better ones.



'Next time I let Superman take charge, just hit me. Real hard.'
'You're a princess from a society of immortal warriors. I'm a rich kids with issues. Lots of issues.'
'No. No dating for the Batman. It might cut into your brooding time.'
'Tactically we have multiple objectives. So we need to split into teams.'-'Dibs on the Amazon!'
'Hey, we both have a Martian's phone number on our speed dial. I think I deserve the benefit of the doubt.'
'You know, for a guy with like 50 different kinds of vision, you sure are blind.'

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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-22 06:52pm
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I don't think the Elite we're transiting anything, I think they were just pretending for the sake of seeing how Supes reacts to them.

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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-22 10:52pm
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There was a story in the comics like this a long time ago. A bunch of stereotypical 90s anti-heroes showed up, made a fuss, caused some property damage, and generally mocked Clark for his outdated, Boy Scout morals.

He kicked the crap out of them, easily. Then pointed out how awesome it is that such a powerful figure follows such a rigid antiquated moral code.



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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-22 11:41pm
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It's a direct adaptation of the story "What's so funny about Truth, Justice and the American Way?" (Action Comics 775). In the original story, the defeat of the new, dark 'heroes' is temporary. I haven't seen the movie yet, but from what I've read, people are implying that he didn't pull the bait and switch he does in the original story. He makes it look like he killed them all/lobotomized them, when in truth he just defeated them as his morals dictated originally. Is it the same or different in the adaptation.



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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-22 11:49pm
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That very story is mentioned in the opening credits and yes, he did. When everybody thinks Clark broke down and sunk to the Elite's level-with all the terrible consequences that entails-it turns out he didn't.



'Next time I let Superman take charge, just hit me. Real hard.'
'You're a princess from a society of immortal warriors. I'm a rich kids with issues. Lots of issues.'
'No. No dating for the Batman. It might cut into your brooding time.'
'Tactically we have multiple objectives. So we need to split into teams.'-'Dibs on the Amazon!'
'Hey, we both have a Martian's phone number on our speed dial. I think I deserve the benefit of the doubt.'
'You know, for a guy with like 50 different kinds of vision, you sure are blind.'

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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-23 01:07am
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Though this does raise a few questions as to why the heck he doesn't have his super robots help him beat all the super criminals he keeps having to deal with. I'm sure Atomic Skull wouldn't have killed so many people if Supes had his robots patrolling Metropolis and ready to help out whenever an attack happens. I can actually see the logic in Supermans "Do not kill ever, even if they are an inhuman supervillain." code, if only because Supes is so powerful (and apparently immortal) that such a code would prevent him from going over the deep end.

I mean, superheroes regularly have to face villains who can shapeshift or mind control or whatever and having his own unbreakable rule could provide some protection against him killing someone he would regret later. Such a code would make a hell of alot more sense if the justice system that Superman has to work with would enforce the death penalty on supervillains or at least properly contain them (if Atomic Skull had been imprisoned inside a tank of water or some other device that was less likely to fail and let him escape then it would be a different story).

It is interesting that during their fight with Atomic Skull, the Elite didn't come off as invincible. They did have powers and all but a weakened Atomic Skull nearly beat them until Superman came in and helped them out. Considering how many innocents died in that fight, you can make a good case that if the Elite didn't kill Atomic Skull right then when they had the chance that there was no guarantee they could survive a later battle with him (much less keep tossing him back in jail). Superman it seems in this story is actually immortal (unless you've got kryptonite which nobody here did) and even with the apparent beatdown he gets near the end he never seems to consider himself in actual danger. It makes you think that Supermans code against killing supervillains like this will never actually result in his own death but could just result in the death of innocent bystanders. The Elite don't have his immortality which makes their actions pretty understandable.

Though the whole "We're in charge now" thing and killing the leaderships of countries without any spoken plans of what to do during the inevitable power struggle doesn't put them in the right at all.



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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-23 06:10am
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The Atomic Skull wasn't weakened. He even said may stay at Stryker's did me some good. Somehow resting at Stryker's allowed him to overcome the power drain they were putting him through. So when he came to fight Superman, Supes needed the Elite to help him.

However I get your main point about if the Elite didn't end the Atomic Skull, they might not survive round two.



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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-23 08:53am
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Well, my thing about him being weakened was due to all the cracks in his armor and stuff... though he might have had cracks in his armor during the first battle, I can't quite remember.



Fry: No! They did it! They blew it up! And then the apes blew up their society too. How could this happen? And then the birds took over and ruined their society. And then the cows. And then... I don't know, is that a slug, maybe? Noooo!

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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-23 10:33am
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Batman wrote:
The Elite went from 'We deal with the bad guys permanently' (for which there are damned good reasons wether or not we in the Tights Brigade want to admit it) to 'let's kill Superman and rule the world' for no real discernible reason. Sure, power corrupts and all that, but there was no real transitional period showing that. They superhero around if a bit roughly (and frankly after using the surrounding buildings to rough up Atomic Skull Clark's not in a position to chastice anybody for being careless about collateral damage), show up at Clark's to tell him to stay out of their way, and when he predictably says 'No' they tell him 'Yes you will or we'll kill you'-and decide to make a media spectacle of it too.
I did love the final fight sequence where it appears Clark pulled out all the stops and went 'you wanna play hardball, we play hardball'.
The 'You're screwed' speech after his apparent death was awesome, and this finally showed just how screwed you are if you're up against the Boy Scout (as I can testify from personal experience).
Not the best of the DC DTVs but easily one of the better ones.


I thought The Elite went from disagreeing with Supes to wanting to kill him really quickly. That was an odd sort of jump.

I did like the battle on the Moon and afterwards when Superman makes taking them down look rather easy while making his point about why he follows the rule of law as best he can. Lobotomizing Black and removing the powers from the others seems to stretch his previous morals a bit. He may not be killing people like The Elite but he is deciding to drastically alter who they are. From that stand point The Elite did get him to do more to criminals. Just not to the extent that they were doing.

It was a little weird that his super bots helped out so much but he doesn't have them in Metropolis on even a part time basis. I haven't read the comic book version so does anyone know if the bots look the same as they do in the movie? I'm just wondering because Silver Age Superman and Superboy had robots that looked just like Clark and would fill in as Superman/boy as needed. I'm just wondering if the change to a more mechanical appearance was to keep people from confusing the robots with Superman.

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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-23 11:23am
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If he could somehow removed the Elite's powers, why doesn't he do the same for other criminals? If we say
a) it just only works for the Elite, its contrived
b) if he chooses to do so for the Elite, but not say the Atomic Skull, it raises some interesting points I am not sure we like to go. That is he did it against the Elite because they more than the Atomic Skull challenged his values. The Skull might kill him, but the Elite threatened to make his values look obsolete. Its clear Superman places his values above life (his own). What does that say about Superman?



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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-23 02:02pm
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I liked it, too, and I read the comic just before watching it. My favourite line:

Manchester Black wrote:
They're dead. Dead as a bunch of dead wankers.


I also noticed a possible easter egg: in a shot of the interior of "Bunny", we see what looks like a certain police call box.



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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-23 02:11pm
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Tsyroc wrote:
I thought The Elite went from disagreeing with Supes to wanting to kill him really quickly. That was an odd sort of jump.
I haven't watched this- but I had a thought.

From what I'm hearing, it sounds like the Elite are being presented as super-powered thugs. Thugs who have some interest in keeping totally random people off their turf, but their turf is the whole world. They're the neighborhood gang of punks, scaled up to a global level.

A thug can go very fast from "polite disagreement" to "IMMA CUT YOU!" if you stand in their way or make them look weak. They react very badly to being told to stand down by authority figures, especially if they've had a lot of success at using violence to get their way before.

EDIT: This may be what's reminding me of Kingdom Come, which I've actually read. There too, you have 'edgy new' superheros showing up who are a lot more willing to kill each other off. And one of the themes is that once you open that door, the psychological difference between "serve and protect" and "rule the roost" gets a lot narrower.

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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-23 07:05pm
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SCRawl wrote:
I liked it, too, and I read the comic just before watching it. My favourite line:
Manchester Black wrote:
They're dead. Dead as a bunch of dead wankers.

I also noticed a possible easter egg: in a shot of the interior of "Bunny", we see what looks like a certain police call box.

Wrong colour. The thing's red and the very reason The Doctor's TARDIS looks like a police call box is her chameleon circuits are fried.



'Next time I let Superman take charge, just hit me. Real hard.'
'You're a princess from a society of immortal warriors. I'm a rich kids with issues. Lots of issues.'
'No. No dating for the Batman. It might cut into your brooding time.'
'Tactically we have multiple objectives. So we need to split into teams.'-'Dibs on the Amazon!'
'Hey, we both have a Martian's phone number on our speed dial. I think I deserve the benefit of the doubt.'
'You know, for a guy with like 50 different kinds of vision, you sure are blind.'

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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-26 01:12am
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Only seeing the trailers, Kingdom Come is what I thought of.

In fact, I wish they would just do KC and stop doing these "Superman has become old fashioned and out of time" stories as it is by far the best variation of it.



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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-26 10:18am
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Havok wrote:
Only seeing the trailers, Kingdom Come is what I thought of.

In fact, I wish they would just do KC and stop doing these "Superman has become old fashioned and out of time" stories as it is by far the best variation of it.


Well, the DVD has a advertisement/preview/teaser for The Dark Knight Returns: Part One so if that goes over well maybe they'll continue with their other big Elseworlds stories. Kingdom Come might be tough just with the sheer number of super powered characters in it. Even if a lot of them are just background.

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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-26 01:51pm
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When Black executed Atomic Skull did any one notice how similar his posture and scene was to how Amon did his execution style debending ? Complete the same fingers pointed like gun stance !



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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-26 02:06pm
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Just to clarify Superman did not *actually* lobotomise Black, it was just a concussion to temporarily suppress his powers.

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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-26 07:22pm
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Blayne wrote:
Just to clarify Superman did not *actually* lobotomise Black, it was just a concussion to temporarily suppress his powers.


In the comic, yes. I'm less certain about whether or not that was what happened in the video.



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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-26 07:49pm
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While there seems to be a kinetic component to heat vision every once in a while, I don't see how you could give someone a concussion with it (at least not without the concussion being the least of their worries). In the movie, it's pretty clear that Clark took away Manchester Black's psychic abilities for keeps by burning off the part of his brain responsible for them.



'Next time I let Superman take charge, just hit me. Real hard.'
'You're a princess from a society of immortal warriors. I'm a rich kids with issues. Lots of issues.'
'No. No dating for the Batman. It might cut into your brooding time.'
'Tactically we have multiple objectives. So we need to split into teams.'-'Dibs on the Amazon!'
'Hey, we both have a Martian's phone number on our speed dial. I think I deserve the benefit of the doubt.'
'You know, for a guy with like 50 different kinds of vision, you sure are blind.'

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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-26 08:43pm
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Remember, now, that this is the big blue boy scout. The heat vision could have been nothing more than bluff, and the real damage could have been done by flicking him upside the head at super speed. Unless we're to believe that Superman was lying about the "micro-concussion" in the comic -- for PR purposes, I suppose -- that's what he did to 'Chester. In the video, though, there's no such post-fight retraction, so there's no reason to believe that what happened was anything other than what he said happened.



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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-26 10:17pm
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I will believe that the issue is up in the air until said definitely to be otherwise, because there seem to be future plot threads in the comics where Black makes an appearance, if in the cartoon they want him back they'll say it was only a concussion. Otherwise they have an explanation if he doesn't appear again animated so they can have their cake and eat it.

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 Post subject: Re: Superman vs the Elite PostPosted: 2012-06-26 11:19pm
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The second half of the film is very weak. Superman comes across as a smug person who can do no wrong. it seems his real motivation was the elite were stealing his fame and publicity. No superman must have ALL THE ATTENTION ALL THE TIME.



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