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What-If: Superman/Batman


Mar 7, 2005
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I like playing what-ifs (I did so with Smallville), so let me do something regarding Superman/Batman.

What-If: in the late '90s/early 2000s, both the Batman & Superman franchises were in development hell. Superman was in this longer than Batman, and Batman was more recent. We all know the story, don't we? Superman: after Superman IV's failure, Superman V/Superman Reborn/Superman Lives all dealt with the same idea: the Death of Superman. But countless delays, rewrites, casting, and what Jon Peters wanted to do with Superman caused WB to pull the plug on the project after alot of money was spent with nothing to show for it, and the planned blockbuster of WB in '99 was now Wild Wild West "ouch". Batman faced a disaster after the horrible Batman & Robin, with a planned fifth film (fourth sequel to the series) shelved because of it. With plans for a reboot, projects came and went, but there was one that stayed the longest and that was Batman: Year One. But the script wasn't...well you know.

But during all this, there was one movie that was considered, but failed to get off the ground (though that's one of those thank god moments), but despite the story sucking the conccept/idea on it was interesting: Batman vs. Superman. The title just shows why the movie wouldn't work.

But you know what: I often wondered if they went that route and did Superman/Batman (correctly, of course) instead of solo Superman and Batman franchises. What would have been like? Obviously, there is a charm on this: Jeph Loeb on Superman/Batman, the monthly itself still in publication, the upcoming DTV adaptating the first Loeb arc, as well as the STAS episodes, and the multiple times they teamed up in comics from issues to max-serieses titled World's Finest; from all of that, Superman/Batman would be one of those ideas that would make you wonder "why didn't they think of that sooner, or at all".

I often wondered about stories, since you have two characters from two franchises, two world, etc. Prior team-up films have always been...favoring one over the other no matter how much the story focused on both. One diea is that I would have movie #1 be on their origins, bit have them tied into one another so much that it hadn't been done before: the development of Superman would occured at the same time with the development of Batman, to the point where when Superman becomes who he is the same time Batman becomes Batman, and at the same time. Movie #2 would be on both of their '93 events in one movie: Death and Return, and Knightfall. Where Superman dies and Batman is broken in act one, they are replaced by creepy and ultra violet versions of themselves in act two, leading Superman to be resurrected and Batman will go through salvation in order to combat their replacements and restore the balance. Part of inspirations for these movie ideas is from the World's Finest maxi-series.

This is just small of the many ideas I could possibily think of, but it has made me wondered what they could've done if we didn't have Superman and Batman, we had Superman/Batman. This is something that ultimatly makes you think.


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