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Wonder Woman. Yes. That’s the big one, we all know it. Lets get that out of the way. It will happen, I’m just surprised it has taken this long. I wrote a whole article about it that you can peruse at your leisure.
Speaking of inevitability, DC’s going to be looking to develop their own shared cinematic universe. Why? Because everyone is. Sony’s looking to make a shared universe out of Spider-Man, and Fox is hoping to do the same with X-Men and the Fantastic Four. Why? Because shared universes make billions of dollars.
So DC, with an entire actual universe, will be looking to cash in. Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman — the Trinity — are in for sure. But who else? The Flash? It’s possible. The Green Lantern? Uh… perhaps. If it can come back from that movie.
So that’s at least four characters. Not really enough for a Justice League movie. So who else should get included in this DCCU? I’m glad you asked! What about…
He’s kind of goofy, a bit too similar to Superman, and a left over from a different time. I understand. Yes. But hear me out. Captain Marvel here has a hook that no other superhero on the screen has. He’s a kid! Like literally. He’s a kid who becomes a super being via magic lightening whenever he says “shazam”. Kids sit there and connect to Batman or Superman because they’re cool, but they relate to Captain Marvel. They can be Billy Batson. That’s a much stronger appeal.
I hate to say it, but the first thing to do is darken him up a bit, modernize the suit, make Billy like 13 or 14 to appeal to a wider age group, and tone down the crazier elements of his origin. It’s simply a matter of translation. Not everything that works on the page, works on screen. The important thing is to keep Billy Batson hopeful and optimistic in a cruel and unforgiving world. A magic Superman with the innocence of a child.
Think about the interaction a character like that will have with the Cinematic Justice League. Why with this more cynical Superman and the older Batman, he’d be a lighter note in a sea of gritty grimaces. It’s an interesting mix, one rife with potential conflict. Not convinced? Well like most good things in DC, an excellent example already exists in the DCAU:
Is he lame? I don’t think so. Would the joke be referenced sometime during the movie? Of course.
Aquaman, as in the uber powerful monarch from underneath the ocean who straight out hates the surface world, would make an interesting addition to the DCCU. Think of what Thor did to expand the scope of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but where as Thor was a spoiled prince, Aquaman is an untrusting king. It’s completely different. Every choice they make, he’ll have to think about the well being a nation and culture. That’s a ton more going on than with any of the other characters.
Plus, not only would you have an easy arc (Aquaman learning to accept the surface world), but so many avenues in terms of character conflict as well. He could have eyes for Wonder Woman due to their shared royalty (which might piss off Supes), disregard anything Batman has to say because he perceives him as weak, or, best yet, have trouble figuring out our surface transit system. Oh, that crazy Aquaman!
WAAAAAAH? Yes, Zatanna. I’ve thought about this for a bit. Firstly, it would be nice to have more than one woman on this Justice League team. It’s just a better dynamic AND helps to set them apart from Marvel (this is crucial). I know, Hawkgirl would be the go to choice, right? Well with her you run the risk of overloading the team with characters possessing a similar power set. Which would get boring. Not to mention trying to explain any version of her backstory. Seriously, read it. Even a whole movie to herself would be pushing it.
However, more importantly, she’s magic. That’s a facet of the comic book movie genre that’s hardly been explored. Marvel has written themselves into some kind of corner on that front with setting their Cinematic Universe is a mostly-science based world. If they want to introduce Doctor Strange or any other magical characters they’re going to have explain magic away somehow, and ‘YOUR MAGIC IS OUR SCIENCE’ won’t work for everyone.
DC can get ahead of the game with Zatanna, introducing the concept of magic into the DCCU. It not only increases the breadth of the world, it has a bunch of little side effects like giving Superman a non-Kryptonite weakness. Imagine Superman getting his ass kicked by some eldritch horror, only to be saved by the likes of Zatanna. In doing so, she earns the respect of her teammates who had only thought of her as “the magician” up to this point. This thing writes itself!
Of course, they’re going to have to do something about the costume design to make her less of a walking fetish. At least get rid of the top hat. We’ll see how fishnets test with control groups.
They don’t have to be all heroes, guys. He could a villain somewhere…
Or like… an anti-hero with a standalone movie…
C’MON IT’D BE AWESOME!
I originally thought there’d be no way Martian Manhunter would be included in the DCCU, especially a movie of his own. But now Marvel is putting chips on a Guardians of the Galaxy movie and I kinda have to rethink things. With a redesign — more clothes than just the buccaneer boots and underoos as well as toning down the forehead cliff — and his shapeshiting abilities, it’s as doable as a Hulk movie. Mmm… maybe that’s a bad example.
MM is stoic and, unlike Superman, truly alien to our world. Like a Spock that can change his form and read minds. While everyone is busy with their own fears, wants, and needs J’onn is cutting through all the bullshit. He’s the voice of reason. The outsider looking in. When the inevitable scene where the characters shout at each other comes up, it’ll be MM who talks some sense into them.
I’m repeating myself, but it’s because its important now that everyone is getting a shared universe, he’s also something we haven’t seen before. An ultimate fish out of water story. He’s lost everything and is now alone in a world he doesn’t understand. There’s nothing more compelling than that.
This might be nitpicky, but MM is also a seminal member of the Justice League. Not only would it boost the Justice League movie with the reasons written above, but it’d also appease the hell out of comic book fans.
Are there any characters I missed? Any you think are more worthy to be in the DCCU? Let me know in the comments below.
BUT YOU SHOULD REALLY CONSIDER A DEATHSTROKE MOVIE, DC. I know you’re reading this.