Top 4 Stories A ‘Batman/Superman’ Movie Should Adapt

Published 2 years ago by , Updated November 15th, 2013 at 12:22 pm, This is a list post.

Superman Batman Movie Story IdeasWarner Bros. is using the success of Zack Snyder's Man of Steel to their advantage, as it has been confirmed that their next step will not be a sequel, but a Batman/Superman movie releasing in 2015.The news is sure to send fans reeling, since a team-up film including both of DC's most bankable - and beloved - superheroes has been on the lips of many close to the project. Henry Cavill has voiced his interest in seeing the pair on screen, and Snyder's well-placed Man of Steel easter egg all but confirmed the studio's intent to some extent.Pairing the last son of Krypton and Gotham's dark protector may seem like a guaranteed success, but the film will need a solid story. Batman/Superman stories are some of the best DC's writers have crafted, so here are the Top 4 Stories the Batman/Superman Movie Should Adapt.

The Dark Knight Returns

Batman Superman Dark Knight Returns MovieZack Snyder made it clear when he announced Batman would appear in the Man of Steel sequel that Frank Miller's pivotal comic book would be playing a large part in the film. Explaining that "The Dark Knight Returns" wasn't going to be adapted into live-action, but that it would allow he and David S. Goyer to tell a story they both wanted to - and we think we know what they're getting at.Anyone who either read the comic book (or watched the animated adaptation) knows that the fight between Superman and Batman is one for the ages. A Superman who thinks he can't be touched is brought to his knees by Bruce Wayne, who views the world not as one of hope, but of despair and fear. If Snyder and Goyer were looking for ways that comic writers had brought the pair of titans together as foes, not friends, Miller's series is the best example.If that's truly the path being taken, the chance to tell a story in which Batman and Superman disagree and ultimately face off seems right up Snyder's alley. Forgetting the size of the battle that would ensue, it would also open the door to far more grounded and less-than-formulaic standalone superhero films. Not to mention lay the groundwork for a Justice League that is anything but simple to maintain.

World's Finest

Batman Superman Worlds Finest Movie

We certainly aren't the first fans of DC Comics to suggest that adapting the "World's Finest" animated film is the correct course of action in realizing the Batman/Superman onscreen, but it bears repeating.The film manages to bring the Last Son of Krypton and the Dark Knight together not as a force for the betterment of society, but as a result of the forged alliance between two other DC characters: Lex Luthor and the Joker. With each villain entrusted with killing the other's nemesis, Batman is forced to face an egomaniac not all that different from his Bruce Wayne identity, and Superman is forced to suffer the Joker's unique brand of torture.With a final unveiling of Lex Luthor (his presence was teased at length in Zack Snyder's Man of Steel) and yet another chance for an actor to portray the most famous of DC's villains (Joker), a live-action World's Finest would be a marketing dream come true. And with large action sequences throughout, it could match the size and scale of competing blockbusters.

Public Enemies

Superman Batman Public Enemies"Public Enemies" was a good enough story arc to send the "Batman/Superman" comic series off to the races, so millions of comic fans can't be wrong. The original story, written by Jeph Loeb, put the two DC mainstays together in the fight of their lives.When billionaire Lex Luthor is elected President of the United States, he sets his sights on eliminating Metropolis' big blue Boy Scout by positioning him as an enemy of the state, and placing a bounty on his head. With few people to trust besides the Dark Knight, Batman and Superman team up to fight off not just mercenaries, but superpowered individuals looking for a payday.Both Lex Luthor's wealth and the public's fear of Superman were established in Man of Steel, so a film based on Public Enemies would keep developing those same themes. The story has already been adapted into an animated feature that was essentially one prolonged action sequence, so it would be sure to earn its admission price on special effects alone.

The Supergirl From Krypton

Superman Batman Supergirl Apocalypse MovieAs memorable for the art style as the changes to core DC fiction, "The Supergirl from Krypton" arc in the "Batman/Superman" series is one most fans of either hero will keep fresh in their memory. Beginning when Kal-El's cousin Kara crash-lands in Gotham Harbor, her emergence (and discovery of her powers) draws the attention of both Batman and Superman, who quickly restrain her, and discover her as yet another survivor of the House of El.Questioning everything Kal-El has believed about his loneliness and isolation - and proving that Batman's suspicions about god-like aliens aren't soothed by blood relations - how the story plays out from there seems destined for blockbuster success. Darkseid appearing to kidnap the young girl for his own purposes, Batman and Superman forced to work together in rescuing her from Apokolips, and even an appearance from Wonder Woman would gets fans on board with not just the core group of heroes, but the Justice League's future foe.Of course the action must hold meaning along with spectacle: Superman is forced to fight not one, but several of Darkseid's Female Furies at once, while Batman shows the paths he's willing to take combating evil that Superman never could. Zack Snyder and David S. Goyer already included Supergirl in their film's universe, and while Kara's arrival might take a different form, the foundations to make it happen are present.


Release Dates for Batman 3 and the Superman RebootThat concludes our top ideas on how a Batman/Superman movie could not only stand on its own two feet, but build toward the larger Justice League continuity that Warner Bros. finally seems willing to acknowledge is their best strategy for the coming years.What's your take on the announcement? Should Snyder and co. focus on adapting one of the best stories from the past, or come up with something completely new? Leave your thoughts in the comments._______Stay tuned to our Comic-Con 2013 Coverage for more on the Batman/Superman movie.Follow me on Twitter @andrew_dyce.Featured Image Source: Balsavor @ DeviantART 
TAGS: batman, batman vs superman, man of steel, superman, worlds finest


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  1. Not overly excited about this news. Seems like WB/DC is doing this to just milk out their only two successful franchises by bringing them together. So you’re giving us Batman and Superman? What about Wonder Woman? The Flash? Aquaman? etc..? And Justice League? is there news on that? Any? I would completely be okay with this news if they confirmed a none Superman/Batman movie along with this. They really don’t know what to do with anything that’s not those two guys.

    • I think plans for a Flash movie are in the works and hopefully coming out for 2016. Justice League I don’t know it’s rumored or true but i think the movie is planned for 2017.

      • Neither Flash nor JL have been confirmed. At this point it’s all just rumors. My comment still holds.

      • I hope Flash plans have been revived. It was kind of put on hold when DC/Warner got cold feet (blast them) after all the naysayers made a big hue and cry because they did not like Green Lantern (blast them as well; I liked GL). I am up for Man of Steel, which I will buy when the DVD comes out, and will be up for a Supes/Bats flick as well, but you are quite correct that DC/Warner seems to knock their knees together and pee down their legs like a deer in the headlights, and then whip out one of these two for yet another adventure. That is kind of like a poet writing a couple poems that made him famous, and then nothing else good, and trying to live on solely the rep of those couple good poems, or an author writing one or two good books and alot of schlock, but always waving those couple around like his whole career was one gigantic major accomplishment based solely on the reputation of couple good stories amongst the chaff. Bring on something else: Flash/GL; Martian Hunter, Atom, and Hawkman; Doctor Fate and Hourman. Something besides Bats and Supes, and I will be happy. Constantly promising a JLA movie and then not delivering some progress is kind of like a girl promising a good night kiss, and then not even holding your hand.

    • Agreed. Sure I will watch this and buy the DVD, but I would rather see a team-up between Flash (Barry Allen) and Green Lantern (Hal Jordan) against say, Reverse-Flash (Professor Zoom) and Sinestro.

    • They’re not doing this to milk money, they’re doing it so they dont have to waste money on a film about a character everyone already knows about, especially since Nolan just finished a Batman Trilogy. This way they get to pave the way to a Justice League film much faster, now that they dont have to worry about making a Batman film.

      As for heroes like Wonder Woman, she’s a character who NEEDS to have her own film. Her story isn’t as well known as Batman, so they cant just put her in a film, set a small explanation, and think that that’s going to be enough. DC/WB knows that to make the most money on Wonder Woman is to give her her own film, while they know they can make money on Batman without a film.

      We get Batman, they get their money. It’s a win-win.

      Now for the other heroes, its too soon to know anything about them. I read somewheres a while back that DC/WB was going to focus the Justice League film on the 5 Core Members; Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, The Flash, and Green Lantern. Its way to soon to know anything about Lantern, so we should be hearing about a Wonder Woman or Flash film soon, although I think Wonder Woman is going to be be getting her film first.

      And Aquaman? Look, I love Aquaman, he’s one of my personal favorite DC heroes. I dont see him as a useless hero like most people, I read his comics and know who he is and what he can do. Aquaman is kickass. But almost no one else knows that, other than other Aquaman fans. DC/WB need to focus on heroes that make money right now, and an Aquaman film right now most likely wouldnt do as well as I hope it would. Do I want an Aquaman film? Oh my god, yes. all of my yes. But unless they get someone like Nolan to direct it, someone who’s very well known and has a good record for great films, I dont think we’ll be seeing any DC hero films like “Aquaman: King of the Sea” anytime soon.

      • The only thing they’ve confirmed is Superman/Batman, that is the most predictable thing they could have done, it shouldn’t really be a surprise to anyone that WB/DC would eventually put their only two properties that have been successful of the past 3 and a half decades together, especially since MoS has broken any B.O. records in regards to CBM. Until they confirm something that’s not Superman or Batman, I still hold that they’re doing for money, and there’s nothing wrong with that; but JL isn’t Superman and Batman, there are 3-5 other characters that need introductions, and so far WB/Dc doesn’t seem to have any plans for them.

    • Uh ya actually, THR and USA today are saying flash in 2016 and JL in 2017… You got Internet?

      • “You got Internet?”
        That is literally the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard in my life. I’m going to let you answer that for me. Also I checked both sites, can’t find it anywhere…care to give me a link?

    • flash movie in 2016, justice league in 2017, it was announced at Comic con

      • No, it wasn’t.

        It is just gossip from Comic Con. WB has not announced anything about FLash and Justice League

  2. I like the Public Enemies idea. I doubt if you can find someone to play Powergirl, however that one seems most likely to draw interest to viewer and first timers. My second idea would be the Dark Knight returns episode.

    • It was differnt universe. And the story was too different. “WB animations” is the one who does adaptations, and it works there. But for the movies it will create another wave of negative reviews(unless its made with different actors) maybe

  3. I’m really curious to hear your guys’ thoughts on the podcast!

  4. public enemies and worlds finest are my top 2 choices. i like the idea of lex being president going up against supes and bats

  5. In DKR and so many other comics that superman and batman have faced off, it seems the writers have been so preoccupied with making batman appear as the ultimate badass who can actually beat superman! (in a PHYSICAL FIGHT no less!!!) Yes that’s right, someone who struggles to take down people like Bane and other common criminals somehow has the ability to beat up gods. (yes I know it was kryptonite and some other s***** science stuff but still)

    If anyone man would beat superman it SHOULD NOT be in a physical fight. That is just undermining exactly what makes superman who he is. I would only hope they take the watchmen/doctor Manhattan approach, where Ozymandias had no chance in even hurting Doc but managed to out think him (in a way).

    This also speaks to a HUGE problem I’ve had about the justice league for years. I love batman as much as the next guy, but he just doesn’t belong in the justice league. The tone and scale of batman stories is on such a different level to those of the other justice league folk that writers constantly have to stretch stories just to make him fit, while also weakening some of the other characters.

    • Thats because most stories like DKR are meant to show Batman as a god, that he can literally do anything. It’s the writer’s fault, really. They’re the ones who try to dumb everyother hero to make their favorite one look the best. Dark Knight Returns is one of these stories. It makes Superman look bad on purpose, so Batman looks amazing.

      As for beating Superman in a physical fight? Superman should be able to lose in a physical fight. There are people who are able to do it. It just shouldn’t be written as “I’m going to punch Superman oh look I just knocked him out even though he’s Superman and I’m just a man parading around in a Bat suit.”

      And Batman does, at times belong in the Justice League. I say at times because Batman is unable to work properly in a team for long periods of time. It’s like in the animated film Doom. Batman creates plans to defeat/kill the League in case they turn evil; bad guys get the plans and nearly kill the League; League recovers and beats bad guys; League fires Batman from the League because they realized they can’t trust him to be part of a team.

      This kind of writing is awesome because while it shows Batman can work with near gods, and be one as well, it also shows that Batman is just a character who is not fit to be part of a team for too long. He is unable to trust anyone except himself. If they can get something like this in a Justice League film, just something that shows that Batman can’t be trusted fully nor can he trust others fully, than that’d be perfect.

      • He doesnt even trust himself, if i remember correctly in Doom he had a defense against himself in case he was somehow turned. Personally, i think batman is a Dick.

        In fact i think ALL DC characters are Vaginas. (& not awesome vaginas) i mean EVERY JL member has a secret idenity. unlike Marvel where we are Straight Up. Excelisor bitches! Im Out!

        • Don’t listen to the MCU. Thor was the only one without a secret identity. Iron Man had one for years before he removed his mask in front of people (it was to save a dog). Everyone knoew about HUlk but had no idea who he really was or where he came from, except the military. And who Captain America was before WW2 was kept secret by the US government.

          Marvel has secret identities, all heroes do. There are very few who do not, for good reason.

          • Thor was masquerading as Dr Donald Blake and walked with a cane that turned into Mjolnir when he hit it against the ground or a wall though so he did have a secret ID for years until Odin took it from him during the whole Beta Ray Bill thing.

            Then Thor immediately wore glasses, tied his hair back and worked in construction under an assumed name (even literally bumping into Clark Kent, who looked at him in awe and said in one panel “No, it can’t be him”).

            • thor running into clark kent?

  6. I like elements of all the stories mentioned, but I do not want a straight up adaption of DKR. Save that one. Maybe keep the tone. I just don’t want to see another story about that has to make Superman look stupid in order for Batman to beat him.

    Considering Luthor and Wayne are going to be the main players in the next MOS based on Easter Eggs, I think an interesting movie would be Wayne and Luthor are both skeptical of Supes. As two of the most powerful men on the planet, they may even be collaborating to find Supes weakness. A minor confrontation with Supes and Bats ensues, but Supes gets the trust of Wayne. However, Luthor is not swayed and launches an attack with the tech both Wayne and Luthor were working on to take down Supes. This would be kind of like the Tower of Babel JLA storyline where Wayne’s contingency plans were used to take down the JLA. In this scenario Supes would need Batman without dumbing Supes down.

  7. I hope they make Batman a scary character , a very dark version of batman would be exciting IMO

  8. They should try to adapt all of these into the Superman/Batman film. It could work, it really could, minus the Lex/Joker bit, but everything could work if some things were excluded.

    Batman pressed to get the Man of Steel to realize that earthlings aren’t sold on his “Hope”, with Superman disagreeing with him saying that he’s seen the world in a different light. Also, I can see Batman being the sole person (well not SOLE) but one of the major players to be like (your fight with Zod caused trillions of dollars worth of damage, killed x amount of people, and even (For a cheeky-funny moment) say he ruined his damn satellite.) LOL.

    This film could be very, very awesome.

  9. Public Enemies makes the most since. Do to the destruction of Metropolis in Man of Steel, newly elected president Lex Luthor claims Superman can’t be trusted and needs to be put into custody. Meanwhile, Batman is a new vigilante that the law is obsessed with arresting, so Lex place’s a bounty on their heads. Superman and Batman would then need to team up to evade Luthor and prove to the world they are here to help (and here to stay).

    This story is not only a great team up story for the characters, but would be a perfect sequel to come after the events of Man of Steel.

  10. either make a new one, or do the World’s Finest story

  11. People were asking how were they ever going to go bigger in a MOS sequel?
    Well, they just did! What’s better then a throw down between the last son of Krypton and the caped crusader? JL is on it’s way!

  12. I have not read any comics but I did watch almost all animated movies from Batman and a lot a few from Superman, so based on my knowledge I think it will be wise to World’s Finest story line then after that they could make a Justice Leage movie and then make another Superman Batman movie when they battle and batman wins :P

  13. Batman not only becomes batman to bring justice to criminals, but to put an end to the false hopes superman has brought to the people.
    Batman believes the people need fear to stay grounded, and on track, while superman brings hope, and optimism to the world.

    • Insightful, thats his new origin story so why not. I hope Snyder feels like this as well.

  14. It seems to me to be already headed towards Superman/Batman Apocalypse. With Kara’s ship being found and the open pod being empty pretty much tells us she’s on earth. This will lead to a JL Darkseid movie. Followed by MOS3 Doomsday.

  15. Three stories that were just adapted into animated films very very recently and one that was animated anyway? Odd list. Personally I think if they take things from anything they should be from stories that are so far unadapted.

  16. They won’t really be able to do “The Dark Knight Returns”, for one it is a Batman story that features Superman where the Man of Steel universe seems like it will stay centered on Superman. Also the MOS Superman won’t be a government lacky, then there should’ve been no way Batman beat Superman in the original but he definitely can’t beat him in a world without kryptonite. If Superman fought Batman like he fought Zod there would be no more Batman.

    Public enemies seems to work the best considering all of the damage that was caused in MOS.

  17. I really hope they don’t go the Dark Knight Returns route. At least not a major part of the story. It’s a GREAT BATMAN story. But a horrible representation of Superman. Superman is not a government lacky. Superman doesn’t turn his back on his superhero allies (SuperFriends). I’m aware that DC writers can write whatever the heck they want and there’s no ‘official’ versions of the character. But anybody wanting to give Superman a fair chance on the big screen should NEVER use the version of him from The Dark Knight Returns. You’re not going to increase Superman’s fanbase with a story heavily inspired by The Dark Knight Returns. Nobody reads TDKR and BECOMES a Superman fan. At least I can’t imagine anyone admiring that version of him.

    I’m hoping they don’t follow TDKR. Would be the only thing worse than David Goyer’s involvement.

  18. They could even use the Injustice: Gods Among Us plot?

  19. They are all good story line…… But i feel it will be good to write something not from the comic. But either way they could write some of all story together but leave super girl out for a while so that after the JL they can have something to do and write of new story of Super girl and the Wonderwoman,Batman & Superman……
    That mine own view…….

  20. They are all good story line…… But i feel it will be good to write something not from the comic. But either way they could write some of all story together but leave super girl out for a while so that after the JL they can have something to do and write of new story of Super girl and the Wonderwoman,Batman & Superman……
    That mine own view…….

  21. I’m not worried about Snyder borrowing elements from DKR. MoS had elements from MoS, Birth Right, All Star Supes, Earth One, and more. I think they might pull off another successful adaptation distillation.

  22. Please for the sweet love of God do not take any cues from Dark Knight Returns. That damn thing did Superman no favors and makes BOTH characters look like jackasses.

  23. in that picture of dark knight returns hes wielding guns….please tell me he wont have guns

    did he use guns in frank millers dark knight returns??? someone please answer

  24. because ‘nolan’s batman just finished, i’m having a hard time accepting a new batman. I know he’ll be fresh and hopefully they’ll use the “detective batman”. i think it could make the transition easier if it was a superman/bruce wayne kinda of thing, like a mos2 with bruce wayne being a inmportant character whos already batman but doesnt reveal it., and then in the last ending minutes of the film,BOOM… IM BATMAN !

  25. Batman himself does no harm to Superman in Returns whatsoever.

    It’s Green Arrow who allows for Batman to get an upper hand for a few moments…and then Bruce collapses.

    I don’t recall a single comic book where Batman himself actually defeats Superman in a direct combat. He always just manages to force Sups to snap out of mind control fast enough to not get killed.

  26. like the first two, hate the last two.

  27. Heard somewhere that Snyder said he’s not considering adapting “Dark Knight Returns” for this movie. Now I’m confused but I guess we’ll see only passing references. Pretty sure this won’t be a 100% adaptation since Batman would have to have been an already established character to work in this storyline and we’re exploring Superman’s early years in Snyder’s story. Batman is the first superhero/vigilante in this universe, so Dark Knight Returns won’t work. Got confused the first time since well shock and knee jerk reactions and all.

  28. I think it’s going to be something along the lines of a mix between little elements from “The Dark Knight Returns” and something along the lines of “World’s Finest”.

    I want Metallo because I do believe he is a great villain that would be an excellent match for both Superman and Batman, but he has to be secondary. Maybe Lex Luthor is working with Victor Fries? I mean, it’s possible to find some way to almost have Luthor bribe Fries into doing is bidding to save his wife, and the combined intelligence would result in making an effective suit for a newly born Mr. Freeze.

    That, and I REAAAAAALLY want Daniel Craig to play Freeze :D

  29. I don’t like the whole “Dark Knight Returns” inspiration.
    Why do they have to be bitter enemies? I’ve wanted my whole life for a movie like this and instead of seeing the two arguably greatest superheros of all time combining forces to stop a team of supervillians we get them beating the crap out of each other?

    Why? It’s a silly nerd argument, I hate it. It’s like your starving for days and someone finally gives you food. But it’s something you hate and it’s a little rotten. Yeah your grateful that you have food finally something in your stomach after days without food. However, at the same time you hate the fact that after starving you have to eat something you don’t like.

    My point, finally I get to see Superman and Batman on screen, but doing something I’ve always hated and never liked.

    • But they won’t be doing this for the entire film, perhaps even a 20 minute sequence.

      Snyder said they aren’t adapting TDKR, which means if said fight occurs, it won’t even be for the same reasons.

      Plus, Batman doesn’t trust people easily. That’s his nature. With a guy that nearly destroyed all of Metropolis, parnanoia will likely kick in because Batman stands for not letting fatal harm come to the people he protects and the people he fights against.