Not too long ago there were rumors of Tyler Hoechlin's Superman being considered for a potential spin off TV series. While the CW and Warner Bros have denied this as being accurate but truthfully I think this is worth considering. True we have Supergirl and that show is wonderful but I think there is a lot to mine from Superman's 80 year history. There's a reason that every several years there is a new Superman series either live action or animated (including the Justice League animated series). I think the CW would be wise to try their hand at a full fledged Superman series. Here are a few suggestions I have on how to make a new Superman series different from its predecessors.
EXPLORE THE MULTIVERSE WITH HEROIC SUPERMEN
On The Flash, the producers and writers have done a wonderful job of exploring alternate timelines and the multiverse. The other shows don't really go there too much, save for Crisis on Earth X, and I think that would be where a Superman show could be really exceptional. Throughout DC Comics history there have been multiple fascinating versions of alternate Superman - there's Kingdom Come, Red Son, Val Zod on Earth 2, Calvin Ellis (a Superman based on Barack Obama), and many others. I'd love to see a Superman series that wasn't afraid to bring all these different Supermen to life and show Clark how different his life could be under different circumstances. Or worse yet . . .
. . . AND EVIL SUPERMEN
One thing I've been advocating for since the first time the Multiverse was mentioned on The Flash has been the arrival of the Crime Syndicate of America. Granted we got a version of this group during Crisis on Earth X we have yet to see a fully fledged Crime Syndicate. A Superman series would be perfect to explore not only heroic alternate Supermen but evil ones as well. Ultraman is an amazing character. I'd love to see this inverted Superman invade Clark's world and really mess things up. Tom Welling played a version of this character on Smallville but I'd love to see an all out brawl between the heroic Clark Kent and his monstrous doppelganger. Plus the one from Geoff Johns's (my man) Forever Evil was a really twisted Superman. He snorted Kryptonite for strength and is allergic to sunlight. It's pretty bizarre but I'd expect nothing less from Johns. That's the Ultraman I want to see challenge our heroic Kal El.
One of the best characters to come out of DC's Rebirth is definitely Clark and Lois's son, Jon. While he's taken on the mantle of Superboy he's nothing like Clark was when he was a kid or Conner Kent. He's his own young man trying to find his place in the world. He's wonderfully naive but has a good heart. In the early issues of Superman Rebirth, Jon struggled to control his powers but eventually found a way to use them to help others and fight by his father's side. One of the most praised elements of Black Lightning is showing an older superhero with young daughters that he's training to carry on the good fight. I'd love to see a Clark Kent have to train his son on how to be a hero in a similar fashion. But not like The Flash where he is time displaced, I'd love to see Jon that's actually Lois and Clark's son and is working on getting a good handle on his powers.
REIGN OF THE SUPERMEN
Now I'm not saying we need to get into the whole Death of Superman storyline (although if a Superman show exists it will definitely explore this territory) but I'd love to see some of these characters done on the CW. Granted David Harewood played Cyborg Superman but I gotta say that it was written poorly. Considering how great his Hank Henshaw was in flashbacks in season one, it's disapppointing that one of Superman and Supergirl's greatest enemies was reduced to a thug for hire during season two. Plus we have yet to get a great portrayal of Steel in any live action iteration.
I rest my case
Supergirl could easily introduce Natasha Irons or even John Henry Irons to the show. It's surprising to me that they haven't done that yet. Also the Eradicator is an awesome force to be reckoned with. I'd love to see him done on screen as a super-big-bad. These are such great characters that haven't been used yet in the Arrowverse. I'd say I'd love to see Conner Kent but if rumors are true we'll be seeing him soon enough on Titans.
CROSSOVER WITH KRYPTON
Soooooo . . . this is probably a super (pun intended) long shot but how great would this be? There are always rumors that Superman will appear on this show or that show but honestly it seems almost inevitable on Krypton. The show is all about protecting Superman's legacy so it seems inevitable that Kal El will meet up with Seg El at some point, probably during the last episode. But I'm greedy and impatient and I'd love to see that happen sooner rather than later. Plus the actor that plays Seg El, Cameron Cuffe, is such a huge nerd that he might campaign for a role on a potential Superman show. And you know what? He's a damn good actor. I'd cast him in a heartbeat. Even if it wasn't a Superman/Krypton crossover.
STRONG FOCUS ON LOIS LANE
I had a previous blog post about how Lois Lane deserves her own TV show, and here we have an opportunity to give Lois the spotlight. Granted we had Lois and Clark where Lois really drove the action of the series due to her investigative journalism, but I think a new Superman show is where we can see Lois shine again. She's one of the strongest, best characters in all of DC Comics and I still think she'll get her due soon enough. This year's annual Arrowverse crossover Elseworlds will include Lane in a sizable role. I'm hoping that she and Clark will headline a new series. Lois definitely deserves more time in the spotlight as a hero and I'm hoping to see her on the small screen sooner rather than later.
LESS HUMAN THREATS
I think I speak for all Superman fans when I say it's very irritating that Lex Luthor is constantly the go-to for Superman bad guys. For me it was refreshing watching season one of Supergirl and Lex was nowhere to be seen. I don't even think he was mentioned (but I could be wrong). If a Superman show were to be greenlit I'd love see Lex Luthor as far away as possible at least for a few seasons. I'll be the first to admit that I love Lex Luthor and he's an amazing character but I think it's better to treat him like the Joker in the Dark Knight trilogy. The first film, Batman Begins, didn't need the Joker to make it a compelling film. He was saved for the sequel and it was worth the wait. I think that should be how Lex is treated. Like I've said previously, there are so many Superman concepts that haven't been used in the films or TV shows so holding off on Lex would be a smart move. Plus, let's see more alien or super-powered threats that could go toe to toe with Superman physically as well as mentally. Speaking of . . .
MAGOG / GOG
One of the oldest and best tropes used in Superman storytelling is the idea of "Is Superman a god?". During Kingdom Come and the psuedo-sequel in Justice Society of America's Thy Kingdom Come the characters of Magog and Gog challenge the very notion of Superman and the other superheroes. In Kingdom Come, Magog kills the Joker and the public sides with him causing Superman to question his role in society. In Thy Kingdom Come, Gog shows up and starts solving all the problems in the world and demands to be worshipped. The Justice Society refuses and Gog flips his shit and starts killing off people. I think that story has potential to be really captivating in today's society where it seems like faith and religion are used as excuses to do terrible things. Those types of stories like God vs the Devil are always fascinating to me and I love seeing Superman as a supposed god figure that he tries to refute. Christ imagery is constantly used in Superman stories but it's never tackled head on. Supergirl tackled this type of story during season three in an exceptional episode but I think a season long arc seeing Clark struggle with this idea of the public treating him like God would be excellent television.
Granted a Superman series is unfortunately a long shot at this point but I gotta say that Kal El, Lois Lane, and all the Daily Planet staff are ripe for television. Plus there's the recent "legacy" casting that happens with these shows nowadays and I think Brandon Routh, Dean Cain, and Tom Welling would be amazing guest stars. Superman adventures have always made for great television shows so why stop now? Plus Tyler Hoechlin and Elizabeth Tulloch would be great as this generation's Clark and Lois! So what are we waiting for CW? Let's make this happen!
Till Next Time!
JJ - the Comic Junkie!