DC Movies - To Infinity and Beyond

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by dodge, Aug 5, 2018.

  1. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2004
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    Exactly, for a lot of people the movies are going to be the only version of the character that they are going to be exposed to, so I think it's best to try to present them with a version of the character that really represents what the comics version of the character.
    They don't have to be an exact copy of what's in the comics, but there are a lot of core elements that should be there. The MCU is a perfect example of making changes to the characters, but still keeping that core intact.
    I think you are taking this way to literally, it seems pretty clear to me that when people are talking about "original" I don't think they are necessarily actually talking about the early comics.
     
  2. TREK_GOD_1

    TREK_GOD_1 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    May 24, 2006
    Location:
    Escaped from Delta Vega
    Wrong. The anti-DCEU people have claimed the Swan/Weisinger version was the original, which is how they judged every filmed adaptation of Superman, finally going completely negative with their "Superman is not dark!" cries about the DCEU. Again, if they want original, go the source which has been available for all to familiarize themselves with for eight decades.
     
  3. The Realist

    The Realist Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2001
    Pretty sure that I, for one, have never used the word "original" in decrying Snyderman. (I do know better.) It's hardly necessary to invoke originalism to say that grimdark Superman is not to my taste, nor is it in keeping with the overwhelming majority of the character's 82-year legacy.
     
  4. theenglish

    theenglish Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2001
    Location:
    Western Canada
    The original Superman was not grimdark either. The code against killing hadn't been developed at the time but his actions weren't different than other popular heroes. He was a crusader for the poor and downtrodden and treated gangsters, corrupt politicians, and amoral businessmen as if they were all equally of the crimes they committed. But he was always a beacon of hope and stood for justice.
     
  5. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2004
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    But are they specifically saying the early golden age comics?
    I think I've said the original comics a few times when talking about characters like Superman or Spider-Man, but when I have said it, I don't mean the early comics, I just mean the mainline comics, rather than movies, TV shows, video games, or the comics set in other universes.
     
    The Realist likes this.
  6. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    I wouldn't say that. As you say, an adaptation needs to be able to stand as the exclusive version of a work that a given audience member knows. So that means it is not beholden to copying some other version. It has the freedom to create its own distinctive version. A lot of great movies and TV shows have featured versions of their characters that were very different from the source materials. Arrow's Felicity Smoak was nothing like the comics character, aside from working with computers. Its Oliver Queen, "Laurel" Lance, and other characters were quite revisionist too, but they still worked as characters in their own right. Marvel's also had some very revisionist characters who worked very well, like Peggy Carter, Mordo in Doctor Strange, Ghost in Ant-Man and the Wasp, etc.

    The mistake some people make is to see adaptations as competitors or replacements for their source works. They aren't. They're distinct entities that exist alongside their sources. They're like a new species that branches off from an old species -- the existence of one does not threaten the other or render it extinct, because it branches out to occupy a different, non-competing niche. It becomes its own distinct thing that evolves on its own path. The characters in an adaptation don't have to be like their namesakes in the source. They just have to be good characters in their own right. That is the end, and deciding whether to keep or change elements of the source material is merely the means to that end.

    I have nothing in principle against a movie interpreting Superman in a new way. After all, he's had numerous interpretations in the comics. The problem with Snyder's Superman is not that he made changes, but what the specific changes were. A bad choice in a single specific instance does not invalidate the entire approach.
     
  7. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2004
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    I didn't mean to say that they have to be an exact duplicate of the source material, but they should still have enough elements of the original source to be recognizable as the character.
    I just looked up the original comics Felicity Smoak, and she was the head of a tech company, which still fits pretty well with the Arrowverse version.
    The MCU Ghost was also based around invisibility and intangibility, and wore a similar looking suit.
     
  8. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    No, that's not necessary. The people who know the original character or work are not the exclusive audience. The whole point of creating an adaptation is to transform the work for a new audience. All that requires is for the characters and the story to work on their own terms. Anything outside that is merely a means to that end, and if it gets in the way of that end, then the hell with it. If your responsibility is to create a story, the needs of that story have to be your priority. Treating anything outside the story itself as a higher priority just undermines the needs of the story you're telling.


    Superficial commonalities, but the cores of both characters are radically different. That's the point. In your post I was quoting, you said "it's best to try to present them with a version of the character that really represents what the comics version of the character." You were saying that Superman should be characterized in the same basic way he's portrayed in the comics. By changing that to "any single similarity no matter how tenuous," you're shifting the goalposts to an entirely different playing field.

    The point is that an adaptation is not required to be beholden to the source. The source material serves the adaptation, not the other way around. You keep whatever it works to keep and change whatever it works to change. There's no requirement to duplicate how the source portrayed the character. If a moviemaker comes up with a radically fresh take on Superman that works well for what it is, then nobody has any right to say that's wrong. It's not whether it's changed that makes it good or bad, it's just how well the specific change works.
     
  9. Tosk

    Tosk Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2001
    Location:
    On the run.
    You're just gonna group every person who doesn't like the DCEU Superman into one camp? You'd be better off with, "Some anti-DCEU people..." otherwise you're incorrect, and it achieves nothing.
     
  10. TREK_GOD_1

    TREK_GOD_1 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    May 24, 2006
    Location:
    Escaped from Delta Vega
    When someone claims the Swan/Weisinger Superman was the "original" version, they are mistakenly believing that dates back to his origin--1938. It cannot be spun in any way. They have a false idea of who the character was from the start.

    You may not mean that, but the hardliners who insist on seeing Superman through the lens of something that came along years after his creation, yet believe it was the format all along--do mean that. Hell, MoS/Dawn had a serious Superman struggling with his alien place in the world, while trying to rise to the occasion of his responsibilities, but he was not Batman. He was a serious as he needed to be in consideration of his awareness of his alien status, yet trying to live a human life as Clark.
     
  11. The Realist

    The Realist Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2001
    As somebody once said:
    (Emphasis supplied.)

    Source: https://christopherlbennett.wordpre...-best-and-worst-superman-movie-ever-spoilers/
     
  12. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2004
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    I have to confess, the more I'm thinking about this the more I'm thinking of things that were changed in adaptations, that I actually liked and think improved things.
    The MCU has changed a lot of stuff in there movies just as drastically as MOS did with Superman, and I love them.
    So I guess my problem with the DCEU Superman isn't so much about the fact that they made changes, it's just that I didn't like the specific changes they made in this instance.
     
  13. crookeddy

    crookeddy Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2006
    To me, the worst change was Pa Kent. Instead of a moral compass he suggested that Clark should let kids die. And also his own death made little sense.
     
  14. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Yes, exactly. I'll never understand why people blame the whole category for a specific bad instance. Getting served one bad sandwich doesn't mean making sandwiches is wrong, it just means that one was made wrong.
     
  15. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2004
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    I remembered a big example of good, but still different adaptations, the later Harry Potter movies. The first couple were the closest to the books, but are the worst movies in the series. They didn't really start to improve until they started moving farther from the books.
     
  16. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Exactly. The Chris Columbus films (the first two) closely followed the letter of the text, but failed to capture its spirit, which is more important.

    Even so, the whole series was extremely faithful compared to a lot of adaptations. There have been great movies made by taking only the broadest strokes of the source material and building something entirely new out of them, like Blade Runner, Who Framed Roger Rabbit? and How to Train Your Dragon.
     
  17. Ovation

    Ovation Admiral Admiral

    :rolleyes:
    It’s not “made wrong” just because it’s not to your taste.
     
    TREK_GOD_1 likes this.
  18. Tosk

    Tosk Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2001
    Location:
    On the run.
    If someone is talking about entertainment, you can just take it as a given that they are speaking their opinion rather than a fact unless they state otherwise.
     
  19. theenglish

    theenglish Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2001
    Location:
    Western Canada
    I agree that Jonathan Kent was the weakest point of the movie and, in my opinion, biggest misstep in the movie. That said, if I recall correctly, he didn't suggest that Clark let the kids die. He said he didn't know if Clark should have let them die--maybe he said. And that is where I 100% agree with you--Pa Kent lacked the moral compass that has made him a unique and strong character for decades.
     
  20. crookeddy

    crookeddy Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2006
    By leaving it as a possibility he removed himself as a possible moral anchor for Clark... so why is Superman so selfless then? It's supposed to be his "middle American values" instilled by his parents.
     
    theenglish likes this.