BattlinMurdock's JUSTICE LEAGUE Film Ground-Plan

It's twisty, it's turvy, and I think it's the right direction. I haven't laid out a Justice League ground-plan, yet, but maybe that's all the more reason to check mine out!

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By BattlinMurdock - 12/28/2012


Let's start with part one of the movie, because the ground-plan I've got for this series is a bit of a doozy. So, let's take you to a land where destruction rules all. 2024.

Justice League
It's 2024 and Lex Luthor has risen through the ranks and used political power and agenda to turn the United States into a hostile, decrepit wasteland (figuratively). How is this possible? Well, he began sowing the seeds for this years before he was ever in office by doing the impossible. Defeating Superman. After revealing the hero a public nuisance, he had Superman captured and imprisoned, never to be seen again.

Since Superman's imprisonment, other heroes have come out of the shadows to fight this uprising horror. Heroes like Barry Allen, gifted with super speed and an alias like The Flash, and heroes like Hal Jordan, given a ring from the cosmos that he uses to become The Green Lantern. Heroes like a living goddess in Diana's Wonder Woman. Heroes like a man who lives under the sea, like Aquaman. Heroes who fall out of the darkness of their crumbling cities like Batman.

After constant defeat in battle, the newly formed (already formed by the time the feature starts) decides there is only one remedy. It comes to pass that Barry Allen must travel into the past and find and free Superman, so they can stop the war from ever happening. However, at that point in time, the only active superhero was Superman. Barry takes Hal's ring and runs through the time barrier in the past, given coordinates to where Superman may be hidden by Batman's deduction. They also state that Barry only has one chance to do this. If he fails, he will be unable to return to the future because time will have changed too drastically and there will not be that future to return to so they can try again.

In 2024, Luthor finds out about the team's plan and launches an all-out assault on the only three heroes left with their abilities: Wonder Woman, Batman, and Aquaman. These three fight on, not only for their own survival, but for the survival of the remaining people on Earth, just as their time-change plan may not work.



In 2018, Barry finds himself in a world without a Flash (the incident that gave him his powers has not-yet happened), a Wonder Woman and Aquaman (they have not yet revealed themselves to the public), a Green Lantern (Barry has Hal's ring), and a Batman (Bruce has yet to start training to be Batman). Barry's first order of business is to find Hal Jordan. He finds him and eventually convinces him to become the Green Lantern. Hal commits to his new identity, and they go search for Superman.

They find him and release him, only to find Superman has become disheartened that the public has rejected him. They tell him what the future holds and finally manage to get him to join up and take down Lex Luthor.

In the future, the battle rages on. Batman, Aquaman, and Wonder Woman hold back as much of Lex Luthor's totalitarian and robotic army as possible as Luthor now sees only three heroes standing in his way. The battles are long and heavy. And epic. Let's not forget epic.



In the past, Superman, Barry, and Hal start their battle with Lex. His army is small at this point, but he still proves to be formidable. While Supes battles Luthor, Barry and Hal take out the rest of Luthor's army, making a public debacle of the then-politician and completely taking away any public support he once has. The tides now turned, Luthor (in battle-suit) becomes desperate and tries to make his suit go nuclear. Superman grabs him and flies upwards to rid the city of the bomb, but as they fly, he is stabbed in the shoulder with kryptonite by his foe. Weakened, the bomb explodes and Superman falls to the ground, only to be caught by Hal Jordan.

They realize that the only way Superman can survive (the kryptonite has been broken off and secreted into his blood stream) is if they rush him to the future, where Batman's medical intellect could save him. Hal warns Barry that he doesn't know if that is possible, being that they don't know which future Barry will run into now that they've alternated the timeline. Barry tells him that he has to try any way and he runs Superman into the future to save him.

This leaves 2018 Hal Jordan to do the only thing he knows to do. Recruit the would-be members of the Justice League.

This leaves us with questions. Did the plan work? Is the future safe? Did Barry get Superman to Batman in time? Did Batman, Wonder Woman, and Aquaman survive the onslaught? And it's from here we move into solo films.

The Flash
In an effort to create his best friend's superhero identity, Hal Jordan causes the accident that makes Barry Allen the Flash. This realization causes Barry to struggle with his own destiny; was he truly meant to become the Flash if someone else made it happen? Couldn't Hal have picked anyone? But time is running out, because Captain Cold and Mirror Master have attacked the city, and Hal Jordan has to go find the rest of the group!

Wonder Woman
While I don't have plans for Wonder Woman, yet (predominantly because I'm not well-versed on her mythology), she'd have a stand-alone story with maybe an end scene with Hal Jordan informing her of the group.

Aquaman
Honestly, the same thing with Wonder Woman. Give Curry a reason to come up to land, reveal himself, and then have Jordan give him the what's what on the League.

Batman
I've got a lengthy Batman-reboot story, but I'll save that for another day. With him, it'd make sense to get the entire (then) team together for his initiation, which he eventually turns down.

Then, we fall into Justice League 2 which has the second most clever title of all time. We get reintroduced to Superman, as time has come full circle and the year is now 2024, who apparently did survive, and there's a new threat headed earth's way. But that brings up the question...where is the Barry Allen that rushed Superman to the future?

...and that's the challenge I leave to Damon Lindelof.

What do you folks think? I wanted the first Justice League to deliver in terms of superhero team-ups, but in a way that it wasn't everyone physically working together, so it leaves you a bit longing for the sequel. I also wanted to invent a natural progression for these characters together and give them each a chance to really show their stuff. You get to see Wonder Woman and Aquaman take on major, badass armies with the comic book Batman you've been longing for, as well as getting a healthy does of Green Lantern and Hal Jordan without having to deal with a sequel or reboot. Also a good way to show The Flash's relevance to the team instead of just being a fella who can run fast.

And of course, it gives Superman a chance to rest and be longed for again. Tell me what you guys think in the comments below! I'm excited to read about them! And you can follow me on Twitter @Lumetian.

You can find a really cheaply-made, rough version of a trailer here, using clips from oldies, but goodies.



FAQs:
What exactly happens to Flash and Superman? Short answer: nobody really knows at the start. Since altering the time-line, Barry and Clark don’t know what they’ll run into in the future. Barry knows Bruce’s intellect, though, and trusts that if 2018 Hal gets the team together by 2024, Bruce will, by that time, be Batman, so the risk of running into a future with no saving grace for Superman is lower. It’s definitely still a risk, though. But they’re trapped. Superman dies if they stay and he only might die if they go. Barry takes the latter risk, leaving 2018 Hal Jordan to put the team together.

Why the six-year gap? Aside from the time-travel trope being used, where a gap of that size is fairly necessary, I figured six years would be the adequate amount of time for Bruce Wayne to become Batman. Bruce sees the battle in Metropolis and uses it as a catalyst to do good for his city of Gotham. That, his paranoia, combined with the loss of his parents, is ultimately what sells him on the idea to become Batman. When Hal meets Bruce for the first time and finds out that (by this time: 2022-ish), he is Batman, he tells him that Superman’s gone to the future to be treated by him. Batman then starts making a device in order to save Superman, hoping that by 2024, it will be finished.

If Flash is in 2024 after running Superman there, then what happens with the Barry Allen from 2018 naturally becomes the one in 2024? Simply put, they become the same person. The Barry that comes to the year 2024 naturally is the only Barry. The one that ran Superman into the future is gone. Barry has no recollection of saving Superman or of the battle with Lex in 2018 (because he didn’t do it and he was never a part of it), but his natural progression into 2024 causes him to become the only Flash. Time paradox!

What about Martian Manhunter or Cyborg or Hawkman? Simply stated, I’m saving Manhunter for the sequel, and it’s likely we won’t be seeing the likes of Cyborg and Hawkman (in my plans). I'd also want the sequel to be very Green Lantern focused, if possible. Considering he wouldn't have gotten a new solo film, I think re-introducing a team-up of the Corps with JL would be great, and a great segway into people like Stewart and Martian Manhunter if it weren't too stuffed.

And then maybe have Darkseid show up for round three and make JL3 more Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows-esque.
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23 Comments
jimmyjay88 - 12/28/2012, 6:46 PM
I really like this idea but i think John Stewart should be used to diversify the movie a little bit. and what about the Martian Manhunter?
Jolt17 - 12/28/2012, 6:54 PM
Fantastic, man. I also have the idea to feature the Flash using his power to travel to the past (for a different purpose, though), but I can't possibly come up with a story as terrific as yours. Well-crafted, with enough amount of complication (yet still easily digestible), and spot-on characterizations. Not to mention your cliffhanger-esque end to the movie, which may or may not work for an actual movie IMO, but it's still one hell of an interesting idea. Well done.
Jollem - 12/28/2012, 7:14 PM
no!! the only way to do it is how the marvels studios did it. only way possible ever!

joking aside, nice article
Jolt17 - 12/28/2012, 7:38 PM
"Superman grabs him and flies upwards to rid the city of the bomb, but as..."

Just curious, is that bit inspired from Heroes?
jaysin420 - 12/28/2012, 7:58 PM
Very cool, nice job.
Jolt17 - 12/28/2012, 8:16 PM
BattlinMurdock: Haha, understandable.

And about the Green Lantern and Flash bit - being a big fan of Hal Jordan myself - I think it can work just fine. I understand how you think he may not get a solo movie treatment again in a while, thus giving him such a role which I think is satisfying enough. (Especially given the fact that it's rather a pivotal one.)

And your Flash treatment...wow, that's smart. Again, we share the same idea about his supposed conflicted feeling about becoming a hero (let's admit it, the whole I-adore-this-old-superhero-so-I-will-succeed-him will never work on the big screen), but the way you create the stimulation of how that conflict will take place is just great. Not exactly faithful to the mythology, sure, but tied to my point about your cliffhanger ending to the movie, it may or may not work, but all in all it's one creative idea. Not to forget my adoration toward your attempt to make him a lot more relevant to the team - that's the challenge of featuring the Flash in the team, because logically, people won't think he's that important to a team consisting of an alien with tremendous power, a guy who can create anything he imagines, et cetera.
SAT - 12/28/2012, 8:28 PM
I'm a little iffy about the idea, it seems like itwould suit a sequel better than the 1st movie.
But, that trailer is AWESOME! You should definatly make more of those!
jimmyjay88 - 12/28/2012, 9:22 PM
heres an idea Murdock you could do a nod to Kingdom Come and have Superman not there because someone killed Lois so Superman leaves humanity. this way the heroes have to find Superman and convince him to return to the world. I also think this would make Superman more relate-able and not seem as god like.
TheHawkWithin - 12/28/2012, 11:54 PM
BattlinMurdock, sorry to say dude but this is....absolutely amazing. Most fanfics I've seen only focus on having a villain unite the team, but this one really focuses on their responsibilities as individuals. Very original and overall very non comicbooky and more oscar like.
xcrementus - 12/29/2012, 4:17 AM
I love the overall idea of the story, but I keep thinking that a Justice League (if it ever happens) would be kind of a cop out if the ENTIRE team isn't united at the same time, same place.
I mean WB only has one shot at getting this right, these days you can't assume that a movie is gonna be big enough to launch a whole bunch of new franchises out of. You really have to give it all you have, and this kind of story might hold too many cards from the audience.

If i pay to see a Justice League film, i expect to see Batman, Superman, Flash, Lantern and Wonder Woman. Biggest guns, right there together, fighting as a unit. If delivered anything else, i know i'd bitch about it for years down the track.
bgharcourt - 12/29/2012, 4:44 AM
Cool write-up,Murdock. I like the time travel angle(like you said, its a Flash mythos staple), as well as having Hal and Barry give each other their respective powers.

There is something I would like to know your thoughts on. When The Flash takes Superman into the future, the time line has already altered with the fall of Lex Luther, correct? If that's the case, then Superman would have also disappeared in 2018. What do you think the state of the world of 2024 would be?

In every Superman story arc where he leaves earth for whatever reason, nothing good comes of it. Some evil force that would normally be kept in check by Supes always come a-knocking the second he's gone.

When Barry returns to his own time, what do you think he will find? Will any of the JL still be alive?(Oh, who am I kidding Batman will survive)
aresww3 - 12/29/2012, 5:44 AM
Hey great stuff man. Really enjoyed the time travel element of the story.
if you´re not sure about WW, can I suggest some reading for you. Avoid New 52 its awful.
Instead start with Gail Simone The Circle. One of the best WW stories out there.

Read Ruckas run, again some great stories, the one with Medusa and basically the whole run is pretty awesome.

Finally look up Perez´s origin Gods and Mortals. I think you´ll really enjoy. Perez is a bit outdated, but great for the time and has moments of real beauty, but the others recommended are just kick ass.
Tainted87 - 12/29/2012, 6:29 AM
No J'onn?
I was waiting like a little kid trying to be patient, thinking that eventually the Martian Manhunter would pop up (maybe in the past, as a keeper of that timeline?) but uh, it didn't happen.

I like the time travel bit though. My only complaint there would be that it really couldn't be used again without becoming a staple of the Justice League, so long as the Flash is there in the future movies.

No Brainiac though? A huge robotic army and no mention or inclusion of Brainiac?
DrDoom - 12/29/2012, 8:40 AM
Why would Lex Luthor want to turn the United States into a wasteland?
aresww3 - 12/29/2012, 9:05 AM
@ YEAH, I mean the reason I was telling you that was because I got into WW recently and the New 52 version was one of the first I picked up after seeing the animated series, and they´ve really done some controversial things to her origin, that I personally don´t like, but that also is kind of more boring and less intellectually and emotionally satisfying than her previous incarnation. But I have to say for 70 years of publication its really true that most of the old stuff out there is pretty bad. After seeing the animated feature I was impressed by her story and specifically Ares I loved as a villain and wanted to find more stories focusing on him. However it was like a needle in a haystack, DC just don´t seem to know ho to get her right. But Perez especially his origin story for her is fantastic (however as I´ve warned a bit outdated for our modern cynical sensibilities, but seriously worth reading, especially for all the feminist implications he ties into it), Gail Simones Run is really hits heights of genius sometimes and The Circle is up their with my favorite comics and novels (a very dark and refreshing take on WW mythos), and Greg Ruckas run is probably the most solidly entertaining the whole way through. I just think alot of people into New 52 are into it as a story - as oppossed to a Wonder Woman story. He´s dropped all her supporting cast, her villains aren´t in it, she´s in living in london, depowered, and in the midst of a drama concerning the Greek Gods. Kind of like a poormans sandman. So its interesting as all of Azzerrello´s work is, but its not up there with his stuff on The Joker, Lex Luthor or Berfore Watchmen, if thats what you are expecting. The problem is he doesn´t really even like WW, so he´s just reinvented his own character.
Parker2017 - 12/29/2012, 9:46 AM
its good murdock. i think it could eb a bet better but i liek the reverse avengers apple to it.
kenjim152 - 12/29/2012, 11:28 AM
@battlinMurdock , man that is such a great story, i would not be that worried about time traveling stuff, if the new xmen movie handles it right the door will be opened for a lot more people ti give it a shoot.
@aresww3 so at the end u actually think there an be a JL movie without the solo movie introduction films right? U changue ur mind to fast dude ;)
aresww3 - 12/29/2012, 12:11 PM
@kenjim152 - I don´t think thats unfair to say, I never said it was impossible. All I said is WB are doing this for the money in a greedy way. The same they did putting Green Lantern out there before they had a really good creative direction to take the character. Now thats not to say the JL film will be bad, just that to them it doesn´t matter, they just think they´re going to make a quick buck off JL. If they have a good script right now it is purely incidental, even if they had a bad script right now they´d do the same thing. Even if someone passionate right now about telling a WW story and or a Flash story, who had wonderful scripts and a great direction went to WB tomorrow, if there idea conflicted with a "bad" JL movie in 2015, they would pass it up thinking that the head to head with Avengers 2 will generate them more cash. But I can´t say anything till more info comes out, but if I even get a sniff that they are treating WW or Flash badly, or they don´t use MMH without a good reason, or I don´t like the creative direction of the movie I will defo be catching the JL movie on internet and I will not support it at all. Even if I don´t like the actors involved or the director, WB can go screw themselves, and I will actually make a point of going to see Avengers 2 even though I´m not that interested in it.
Read more at http://www.comicbookmovie.com/fansites/sohelpyougod/news/?a=71884#kDux9Ts3BVc7Fw2v.99
6of13 - 12/29/2012, 12:46 PM
Cool stuff Battlin.

I love time paradoxes. They can be confusing but logical at the same time. I think it was an episode of Star Trek Voyager where Janeway says (about time paradoxes) that whatever is supposed to happen will find a way of being what is it supposed to be despite whatever alterations or changes are made to the timeline in the past. i.e if Barry Allen was meant to be the Flash then that will always happen even if changes are made to his past.

I kinda like the idea of Damon Lindelof writing.
kenjim152 - 12/29/2012, 12:53 PM
@areswww3 man u r so right about that, WB just drives me crazy sometimes I cannot believe they have not been able to make a WW movie after the great (in my opinion) animated movie, and u r right green lantern could have been both great movies, but they just rushed everything and they tend to give to much artistic freedom once the project has been greenlit. I just hope MOS is great and from there we can get a world's finest movie.
dezdigi - 12/29/2012, 4:59 PM
I wouldn't mind the whole, let's avoid a whole dystopian future thing. I think I would like to see a cross between Public Enemies and that DC RPG plot. But once that has been established, I would like to see something a bit more mainstream with the group coming together. Or perhaps, a flashback with out the time travel element until the sequel.
I didn't mean to sh*t on your ideas, I'm just thinking about something less convoluted to introduce the JL to the general public.
dezdigi - 12/29/2012, 5:01 PM
I should add, you've had the most original idea so far.
ToTheManInTheColdSweat - 12/30/2012, 6:00 AM
as a comicbook - great.
comicbookmovie - ummmm, don't know.

time travel creates two versions of everything, now complicates a story that's already choking which leads to questions, questions, questions, that's when you lose the audience. AND the powerful justice league not fighting a central physical enemy, the true enemy is lex's political plan - the public's dislike,

is boring in film -> Watchmen 2009.

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