"What if Superman was an evil dick?" isn't exactly a fresh take. Injustice: Gods Among Us did it, as did Irredeemable, and Man Of Steel is basically two and a half hours of Superman playing office temp pinball with sonic booms. But an upcoming movie produced by James Gunn (Guardians Of The Galaxy) is asking a similar question with a new angle: "What if Superman was a child?" That is, a tiny sociopath with little control over his impulses.
Most interpretations of Clark Kent tend to gloss over his terrible twos, preferring to pretend that an omnipotent alien being drop-kicked into an unknown and xenophobic world would never need the U.S. military to give him a timeout. BrightBurn, directed by Gunn collaborator David Yarovesky and written by members of his Games Of Thrones-esque deep bench of brothers and cousins, doesn't make the same assumption.
In the horror movie, set to release May 24, 2019, a childless rural couple finds a alien baby near their farm. So far, so Supes, but despite their best attempts to raise the boy right, he quickly discovers that having the power to melt teachers with your eyes means the rules don't have to apply to you. What does it take to stop a tiny Superman with the opposite of a Superman personality? The trailer doesn't say, but we hope it involves a cheerful boy detective who's attending a nearby summer camp to get away from his fussy parents.
But for fans of Gunn, BrightBurn poses another, much more important question: Who's getting dunked on more here, Marvel or DC? Gunn had been working on his Evil Superboy production while still working for Marvel. But then, over this past summer, Gunn not only got fired by Marvel after becoming the target of a successful alt-right grasshole campaign, but then immediately got snatched up by DC to write their next Suicide Squad movie. So you'd think this trailer would reflect the poorest on Gunn's new employers, who probably aren't that excited to see their hotshot filmmaker turn Clark Kent into Damien from The Omen. But then you'd be disregarding this brief moment in the trailer:
Sony Pictures Releasing
Sony Pictures Releasing
That's right, this DC-inspired movie is brought to you by the "visionary director of Guardians Of The Galaxy," which sure feels like a laser-eye precision burn aimed at whichever non-visionary milquetoast director Marvel will be getting to replace him. Be sure to spot the exact same title card during every single 2icide Squad trailer.
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