Since the dawn of television, network executives have been in desperate need of new content to fill their broadcast schedules. Comic books have certainly helped in this regard, providing inspiration for several popular TV shows over the past 60 years.
From the classic Adventures of Superman series in the 1950s, through to Marvel Studios’ recent Netflix output, numerous superhero properties have been translated to the small screen. Even comics not centered around costumed adventurers have served as the basis for TV shows, including horror phenomenon The Walking Dead.
That’s just the live-action side of things – when animated outings are taken into account, the number of comic book-based TV programmes skyrockets. Not only have these shows proven a hit with audiences over the years, but many are also held in high regard by critics, with shows like Batman: The Animated Series considered a high watermark for the medium.
Not every comic book TV show gets the green-light from networks. Indeed, a surprising number of comics-inspired series were abandoned very late in the day – often after substantial pre-production work had been undertaken or a full-blown pilot produced!
With this in mind, here are 20 Comic Book TV Shows That Almost Happened.
Unlike in the real world, in comics, death is rarely the end. Over the course of nearly a century of superheroics, almost every crimefighter who ever slapped on a mask or pulled on a cape has died (or appeared to die) – only to return from the grave further down the line.
Indeed, we’re at the point now where the very concept of death has lost virtually all meaning within the confines of the genre. After all, why bother getting upset over the death of your favorite do-gooder, when they’re almost certain to be back on their feet again in a year’s time?
And so it is that we find ourselves in the unusual scenario where it’s only when a superhero bites the bullet and doesn’t recover that we consider it remarkable. It’s easy to forget that this does happen from time to time. Sadly, it turns out not every hero gets a do-over. Conversely, there are some heroes that have undertaken the death/rebirth cycle so often that even their allies barely bother organizing a funeral!
With this in mind, here is a round-up of 12 Superheroes Who Died And Stayed Dead (And 8 Who Won’t Stop Coming Back).
When Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice arrived in cinemas back in 2016, it represented a landmark moment. Sure, both the Dark Knight and the Man of Steel had already appeared in films previously, but never before had DC’s two biggest icons – undeniably the two most famous and influential superheroes of all time – shared the big screen together.
Unsurprisingly, given the pair’s history of comic book team-ups, Warner Bros. had previously attempted to feature both Superman and Batman in the same live-action movie. Of these failed efforts, the most significant – which is to say, “bigger than a cameo” – was Superman vs. Batman, which was in development between 2001-2002.
Written by Se7en screenwriter Andrew Kevin Walker (with rewrites by A Beautiful Mind scribe Akiva Goldsman) and with Troy’s Wolfgang Peterson set to direct, Superman vs. Batman is at once similar and wildly different to Batman v Superman.
Although the plots of both films call for a showdown between the two legends and count Lex Luthor among the main villains, that’s pretty much where the similarities end.
Here are 17Ways Batman V Superman Was Almost Completely Different.
Given the seemingly endless stream of comic book movies released in recent years, it’s hard to imagine that any film projects like these ever get canceled. Yet plenty are, with spinoffs the most commonly scrapped.
There are several reasons why these cinematic offshoots wind up on the chopping block so often. The most common motivation for a studio axing a spin-off is that the film which spawned it has underperformed financially.
Then there is the disappointing scenario where a character who was expected to be a break-out hit with audiences fails to impress, with their ability to carry their own solo outing appearing a lot less feasible.
And finally, there are those instances where the overall plans for a superhero film franchise change. Suddenly, a spinoff that once made perfect sense fails to align with the broader slate of scheduled films, and is either re-worked into another movie, or dropped entirely.
Whatever the reason, this means that we sometimes miss out on some potentially amazing superhero side projects – even as we dodge a few that look pretty awful! With this in mind, here are 8 Canceled Comic Book Spinoffs That Would’ve Been Bad (And 7 That Would’ve Been Great).
In many ways, the role of a superhero (or supervillain) sidekick is a thankless task. You get less recognition from the public – both in the fictional universe you inhabit, as well as in the real world – while your more famous boss hogs all the limelight.
On the face of it, sidekicks playing second fiddle makes a certain amount of sense. After all, not only is it their role to support their more experienced mentors, but sidekicks are also traditionally the less powerful element of their respective crimefighting (or crime-committing) partnership.
But that isn’t always the case. Indeed, many comic book support acts actually boast abilities and skills as impressive as those of the spandex-clad headliners they assist, if not even more so. Time and again, these poor souls struggle to escape the shadows cast by their superhero and villain head honchos – even when they finally break out on their own.
In honor of these unsung heroes (and as a tip of the hat to their villainous counterparts), we’ve pulled together this list of 16 Sidekicks Way Stronger Than Their Superheroes.Let no one ever mistake these talented guys and gals for mere human shields or cringing cronies again!
Movie history is filled with examples of high-profile projects that never made it to the big screen – including unmade sequels to your some of your favorite films. Unfortunately, while getting a sequel off the ground for a critically acclaimed outing or blockbuster hit seems like it would be a no-brainer, thanks to the many logistical and political forces at play in Hollywood, that’s not true.
Although this has cost audiences the opportunity to enjoy promising follow-up entries to a number of popular franchises, it’s also spared them from pretty severe disappointment, too. For every brilliantly conceived sequel that fails to materialize, an even greater number are pitched that are at best ill-advised and at worst flat-out unnecessary. Indeed, several of these dubious continuations wouldn’t have merely been destined to fall flat at the box office – they risked damaging the legacy of the beloved movies that came before them.
Still, there’s something inherently fascinating about these unseen films – whether they looked set to be a masterpiece or a trainwreck – that comes from wondering what might have been. With this in mind, we’ve taken stock of the biggest unmade sequels out there, pulling together this list of 9 Canceled Sequels That Would’ve Been Terrible (And 6 That Would’ve Been Great).
As a superhero, you could be forgiven for thinking that when you join an elite super-team like the Justice League, the last thing you need to worry about is disloyalty. After all, you’re banding together with a bunch of equally-heroic, like-minded individuals dedicated to fighting a common enemy. And yet a startling number of betrayals have taken place across the many incarnations of the League that have formed since its inception way back in 1960!
Of course, sometimes the reason for this treachery is that the Justice League member in question was suffering from the effects of mind control, brainwashing, or some other kind of mental hoodoo. But other times, their motivations are a lot more calculated – if not necessarily always badly intentioned – and are therefore a lot harder to forgive.
Indeed, one League member betraying the trust of the rest of team is always taken very seriously, and this otherwise compassionate fraternity of heroes has even resorted to expelling guilty parties from their ranks (at least temporarily). Regardless of the reason, nothing hurts worse for a crimefighter than when one of their costumed peers stabs them in the back – which is why we pulled together this list of 15 Justice League Members Who BETRAYED The Team!