Good news! Megalyn Echikunwoke is set to voice Mari McCabe, aka Vixen, in the upcoming animated series! Marc Guggenheim, who works as a producer for both CW hits, Arrow and The Flash, stated that Vixen’s story will be a “coming of age tale.” Vixen the animated series will also feature the voices of Grant Gustin (Barry Allen), Stephen Amell (Oliver Queen), Emily Bett Rickards (Felicity Smoak), and Carlos Valdes (Cisco Ramon).
Many fans will know Vixen from the DC animated series Justice League: Unlimited (where she was voiced by Gina Torres), but it’ll be nice to see an origin story for Vixen in her solo series. Currently, television is rather starved for series about solo heriones. There’s Agent Carter on ABC entering its second season, and the upcoming CBS Supergirl featuring Kara Zor El, but it’d be nice to see Vixen’s animated show get strong enough reception that CW picks up a live action series as well. Even if it’s only a mini-series in the same vein as Agent Carter, it’d be nice to see a woman of color starring in her own solo hero series. Fingers crossed!
Entertainment Weekly released some really exciting photos this week from Warner Bros’ and DC Comics’ upcoming Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice. While many are understandably wary of the upcoming film, the cover of Entertainment Weekly featuring not just Batman and Superman, but also Wonder Woman has me in a bit of a tizzy. This trinity is one of my favorite aspects of DC Comics, I’m hoping these promotional pictures mean the movie will be less Batman vs Superman, and more trinity-oriented. At this point with Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice still a year away, we can only speculate. But the prominence of Wonder Woman gives me moderate hope.
Ben Affleck, who is set to play Bruce Wayne, the eternal Dark Knight himself, also revealed some small insights into his character in an interview with EW. “[Bruce Wayne is] on the verge of being swallowed up by the anger and the rage that we see haunt this character in the other manifestations of it,” Affleck stated. “But this guy is further down the line and has become more embittered and cynical.”
A cynical Bruce Wayne. That’s new. There’s been speculation and rumors floating around about the inclusion of a Robin — though no word on the who — in the film, which would be a nice change of pace for Batman in his film appearances. I make no illusions of not being a fan of the Christopher Nolan Dark Knight trilogy. His substitute hybrid original character version of Robin was, I felt, an insult to fans of the many incarnations of the comic character. But I don’t want a doom and gloom Bruce Wayne all over again, even if he’s played by what fans are calling “Hot Dad Batfleck.” Still, the image of Bruce Wayne cozying up to Diana Prince sets my Wonderbat heart a bit a flutter, though I think we’re all more interested in seeing Wonder Woman be her own character, and a justified part of the Trinity — not a singular love interest for either Batman or Superman.
Affleck also revealed in his interview with EW what he thought the differences between Marvel and DC franchises are. “Just by their nature, these films can’t be as funny or as quick or as glib as Marvel movies.” Not sure how I feel about a super, ultra, realistic universe — crack a smile Bruce! — but I guess we’ll have to see.
Meanwhile, if you’ve been following Superman’s current comic storyline, he is now depowered, and his secret identity was outed to the world by Lois Lane. In this weeks Action Comics #42, written by Greg Pak and Aaron Kuder, Superman takes on one of the talked about social political discussions of the decade: police brutality. For some reason, after his outing by Lois Lane, police have turned against Superman while the people of Metropolis stand by him. The story heats up with the police attempting to force the citizens of the newly dubbed “Kentville” into their homes, and Superman steps up to take a stand against the police. “I can’t fight for them, but I can stand with them,” is the line Superman monologues in Action Comics #42.
The issue is being praised by the media for its apparent relevance and symbolism given the real world showcasing of police brutality in Ferguson, Baltimore, and many other places where thousands of citizens are protesting against police brutality. But here’s my problem, they’re protesting police brutality against black people. The core of the movement flies under the banner of “Black Lives Matter” because a majority of the recent — seemingly never ending — incidents of police brutality involve black people as the victims. I’m not sure the symbolism and metaphor Pak and Kuder were going for works here given the real world context. Superman is a white superhero, the image of a seemingly powerless black superhero standing up against police brutality holding an anchor to protect innocent citizens would have been, in my opinion, far more powerful. It’s something Marvel could do with Eli Bradley, or Sam Wilson, that would be a fantastic and powerful modern superhero story. Unfortunately it looks like we’ll have to settle for Action Comics #42, but hey, I haven’t read the book, so maybe I’m being overly harsh.
That’s it for this week of the DC Daily Planet! Vixen gets a voice, Wonder Woman gets a cover image and maybe some Batman on the side, Affleck says the DC films aren’t going to be as glib as the MCU, and Superman takes on police brutality! Next week is SDCC. Given that Marvel isn’t attending this year, all eyes are going to be on DC for their Hall H panel. Cross your fingers for some Wonder Woman clips. I’ll see you next week!