Superman vs The Elite
How do you hurt Superman? He is pretty much invulnerable to nearly everything thrown at him and he can dish out more than that in return. So what does hurt the man of steel? The answer; his public image. Based off of the storyline from Action Comics called “What’s so funny about Truth, Justice and the American Way?”, this animated movie shows that Superman is pretty much an old fashioned and moral driven character that represents the base code of what it means to be a hero without killing anyone. His core belief is that everyone has some good in them somewhere even if they are doing bad things. So what happens when a younger and edgier group of heroes enter the scene and take away Superman’s moral ethics? Well, on to the review.
The movie opens up with a video intro that pretty much resembles a Sex Pistols music video along with punkish styled imagery. We are treated first to a small clip that is spoofing the old classic Superman cartoon shorts from the 1940’s and the Super Friends cartoons. The clip pokes fun at Superman’s out dated moral ethics to return all “bad guys” to jail over and over. Lois then starts to mock Clark on the cartoon clip when he is called away for Superman time to stop the Atomic Skull. A few moments later, Superman gets involved in the middle of a war between two foreign countries aiding both sides by disarming jet missiles but saving the pilots and taking out gunmen on the ground. He is aided by The Elite and they quickly become his trainees in a way by learning how to save and rely on each other as a team and to put innocents first above themselves. The public reaction to the Elite is quite unanimous as people start seeing their motives to prevent future death and destruction by eliminating the threat over Superman’s moral ethics that everybody has good in them and can change for the better. Over time, Superman starts to see more of the Elite’s reckless attitude and their lack of moral code to stop crime by any means necessary. And when he leader of the Elite, Manchester Black, kills a villain in front of a large public crowd to show that it must be done to prevent future destruction, Superman decides it’s time to stop them.
The movie over all was really well done. The translation from the source material to this movie was true to the source, but with added content to make the point over all better. The one thing that I thought was good was the fight scenes. They were very reminiscence of a DBZ fight scene in which the action was fast paced and the fights were larger than life. Also the tone of the film was something refreshing of a DC animated movie that didn’t involve Batman. The only bad things about the movie in my opinion were the over use of bright colors and the lack of Tim Daly as the voice of Superman/Clark Kent. Sure George Newburn was ok, but he is no Tim Daly.
Overall, the movie is very good and deserves a viewing if not owning it. It’s good to see DC make an animated film that isn’t all about Batman and that makes good use of a storylines that were probably overlooked. Heres hoping that more of the obscure storyline get turned into animated movies.
Studio: Warner Premier
Run Time: 74 minutes
The Elite Unbound: No Rules, No Mercy
A Sneak Peek at Batman: Dark Night Returns Vol.1
Alan Burnett’s Top Superman Episode Picks
Upcoming Dark Knight Rises Photo Gallery
Blue Ray Exclusives:
Superman and the moral debate featurette
What’s So Funny About Truth, Justice & The American Way? Digital Comic
Commentary with Joe Kelly and Eddie Berganza