A Kryptonian size helping of DC Comics related news from June 9th – 11th, 2013!
Superman vs. Famine!
With “Man of Steel” about to hit theaters on Friday, Superman has become the focus of the “We Can Be Heroes” charity campaign to battle hunger in Africa. The initiative was announced last year as an alliance between Warner Brothers, DC Entertainment and Indie Go-Go to utilize the iconic Justice League to encourage donations. The first of the League members to be promoted was Batman, and within six weeks Indie Go-Go raised over $130,000 towards famine relief – far larger than their goal of $50,000.
Now with the wind at the back of Superman, the second wave of this initiative focuses on him. The larger the donation, the more Superman swag that donors can gain. Examples include signed comics, t-shirts, toys, to extreme donations which would earn a painted mural by Jim Lee (artist of “Superman Unchained”) or being drawn into an issue of “Action Comics”. Superman has long been used to raise awareness about natural disasters, from earthquakes in the 90’s to famine now. Hopefully this alliance of comics and charity will continue to foster good work in the real world.
Superman vs. Critics and Sequels!
General audiences may be days away from seeing Zack Synder’s “Man of Steel”, but naturally advance reviews are in from various outlets online and in print. As Newsarama notes, while the reviews are mixed, the majority of them shift positively thus far. Warner Brothers spent a reported $230 million to produce the film and another $150 million to promote it, and the future of future DC superhero film adaptations. Ironically, this brings costs on par with those of 2006’s “Superman Returns”; between the cost of the film itself, promotion, and previous attempts for a new film in the 90’s starting and stopping, that film cost Warner Brothers roughly $383 million. The difference is the film barely broke even internationally, while projections for this attempt seem to be superior.
In an exclusive, Deadline reports that Warner Brothers are pleased enough by the final product and the initial critical reception (as well as, perhaps, tallies of tickets ordered in advance online) to fast track approval for a sequel film. A second “Man of Steel” would see Zack Synder return as director and David S. Goyer once again write the script. The question mark would be Chris Nolan (of the recent Batman trilogy); he co-wrote and produced “Man of Steel”, but has distanced himself from becoming DC Entertainment’s official film czar. While this may seem like a large story, it is somewhat standard. 2011’s “Green Lantern” (which also saw Goyer’s involvement) was fast tracked for a sequel on the eve of its underwhelming performance, and the waiting game continues. This merely is an official announcement that WB has faith in the film it’s about to release, which shouldn’t be surprising.
“Teen Titans GO!” renewed!
As fans of “Young Justice” and “Green Lantern: the Animated Series” mourn the loss of both series from Cartoon Network’s “DC Nation” block, the network and DC animation have moved on. “Teen Titans GO!”, which started out as a series of shorts animated for the Saturday morning block in 2012. The shorts reunited the voice cast of the “Teen Titans” cartoon which ran for five seasons (and one animated TV movie) from 2003-2006, and offered the characters in a “super deformed”, comedy style. Either due to popularity or seeking to play with a safe franchise, DC Entertainment decided to extend the shorts into their own show, which began this April.
This afternoon, via an official press release, it was announced that “Teen Titans GO!” would be renewed for a second season. The show has done well in its Tuesday night slot, averaging 1.7 million viewers an episode and winning the network’s key demographic of children and pre-teen boys. While the success of this incarnation of “Teen Titans” may seem bizarre, it should be noted that a “super deformed” parody version of the iconic “Gundam” anime series, titled “Superior Defender Gundam Force”, did air on CN’s “Toonami” block for several years. Now that even a parody spin off has lasted two seasons, “Teen Titans” is suddenly the third most reliable franchise for DC Entertainment’s TV animation division after Batman and the Justice League.