For as long as I can remember, I’ve been a “DC Guy.”
I will admit that I am a Batman fan first and foremost. I LOVE The Caped Crusader…always have, always will. Thanks to the 1960s TV show, I became a fan of the greatest comic book character of all time at the ripe old age of 5 -- give or take a year. If my math is right, I’ve been participating in Bat-Fandom for over 40 years.
When I was a kid, I’d go down to my local corner store and purchase my comics off this circular, revolving magazine rack. As I’d buy BATMAN, DETECTIVE, THE BRAVE AND THE BOLD, and any other one which featured my pointy-eared hero, I noticed that there was this big “DC” on the upper left-hand corner of the front cover.
Being curious, I checked out these other titles that had that big “DC” on the corner as well. Thus, I discovered Green Lantern, Green Arrow, Wonder Woman, The Justice League, and of course, Superman.
Then came SUPER FRIENDS and it was over.
For some reason, I never gravitated towards the Marvel Universe. Now I did like Spider-Man and The Hulk, but never gave a flip for any of the other Marvel characters (Though I did have a short fascination with WEREWOLF BY NIGHT for some reason).
Like I said, I was, and still am, a “DC Guy.”
So as you might imagine, I very much enjoyed SECRET ORIGINS: THE STORY OF DC COMICS.
I’m sure that everyone reading this review right now knows, this is the 75th anniversary of DC Comics. As part of the celebration, Warner Bros. has put together a cool little documentary chronicling the entire history of both the company and its classic characters. It’s narrated by Green Lantern himself, Ryan Reynolds. What, was Batman -- Christian Bale -- unavailable? I kid, I kid! Reynolds does a fantastic job -- and I’m VERY MUCH looking forward to this Summer’s GREEN LANTERN.
(I’m thinking that the producers of this documentary were so conscious of the fanboy bitching over Bale’s “Batman Voice,” that they nixed the idea of him narrating from the get-go. *wink*)
The majority of the doc centers on the creation of DC “Trinity” -- Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman. However, most of DC’s great characters are touched upon -- albeit it briefly in most cases. In addition, all of the different “Ages” -- Golden, Silver, Bronze, Modern, etc. -- of DC Comics are featured and analyzed.
Adding their insight to DC’s history are Jim Lee, Neal Adams, Denny O’Neal, Neil Gaiman, Geoff Johns, Grant Morrison, Len Wein, Paul Levitz, Mark Waid, Paul Pope, Dan DiDio, Louise Simonson, Marv Wolfman, and others.
Before I continue, here's the trailer...
My favorite segments were…
* How “The Bat-Man” came to be and the acknowledgement of Bill Finger as one of Batman’s creators.
* Wonder Woman creator William Moulton Marston was one eccentric dude!
* The segment on Alan Moore (WATCHMEN, SWAMP THING).
* The impact that SUPERMAN: THE MOVIE had on the "Comic Book Movie Genre" and the greatness of Christopher Reeve.
* Denny O’Neil and Neal Adam’s GREEN LANTERN/GREEN ARROW. One of the greatest and most influential comic book runs of all time.
The only real problem I had with this video is that at least half of it is devoted to Grant Morrison and how his Bat-Tail is wagging the Bat-Dog. Apparently, “Time-Traveling Bruce,” “The Dick-Batman,” and McBatmen are the greatest thing to ever happen to DC Comics.
I'm kidding -- literally. Anyway...
If you’re a fan of DC Comics, I think you’re going to get a kick out of SECRET ORIGINS: THE STORY OF DC COMICS. My only caveat is that some fans (i.e. fanboys) may think that it’s a gloss-over and too much is left out. While they may have a point, I don’t think you can cram 75 years of history into a 90 minute documentary and make (*ahem*) "everyone" happy.
Batman should have been on the cover...the Bruce Wayne Batman that is.