With its subversive and thought-provoking premise, Superman: Red Son is one of the most famous of DC’s Elseworlds titles, so it may be enticing to hear that Bruce Timm wants to adapt the story for the next DC animated film. But if that prospect does indeed pique your interest, then you’d better support Gotham By Gaslight first.
Speaking at a Q&A at this weekend’s big premiere for the latest DC animated film, executive producer (and general DC animation badass) Bruce Timm told reporters that Superman: Red Son would be his first choice as the next animated Elseworlds film. The three-issue story imagines a world in which Kal-El’s ship lands near a Ukranian collective farm in the ‘50s, instead of a cornfield outside of Smallville, Kansas.
Written by Mark Millar in 2003, with art by Dave Johnson and Killian Plunkett, the book received critical and popular acclaim, and was nominated for an Eisner Award for best limited series. And it's continued to hold a place in our collective consciousness, as we recently named it our most essential Mark Millar story.
For the uninitiated, Elseworlds are stand-alone stories that take place outside of the canon of the DC Universe, and imagine our heroes in alternate timelines or realities. Though it wasn’t originally labeled with the Elsworlds imprint, Gotham by Gaslight is widely considered to be the first of these stories. Written in 1989 by Brian Augustyn with art from Mike Mignola, the one-shot imagines Batman 100 years earlier, as he chases Jack the Ripper around Victorian era Europe.
DC’s latest animated film drops on digital Jan. 23, and Feb. 6 on Blu-ray. But Timm said that the chances of Warner Bros. funding a Superman: Red Son adaptation would greatly depend on the success of this first animated Elseworld’s tale, Gotham by Gaslight.
We have heard rumors before about a possible Red Son movie being kicked around over at WB. Who knows, maybe GbG doing well will help move that along? So, does that dangling carrot make you more likely to go check it out?