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James Gunn’s Superman Can Show the Legion of Super Heroes’ Origin

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With James Gunn and the DCU moving away from Henry Cavill’s Superman, an origin story with the Legion of Super Heroes could create a better adventure.


When Henry Cavill’s Superman met Black Adam, fans were excited to see where the ever-evolving DC Universe would take the Man of Steel. Unfortunately, James Gunn and Peter Safran nixed that notion, moving away from this Kal-El and seemingly putting Teth-Adam on ice. Instead, Gunn’s focusing on another Superman origin story, with a younger version of the Kryptonian.


Admittedly, it’s been done to death before, but after the success of The Suicide Squad and Peacemaker, some folks are giving Gunn the benefit of the doubt. However, to truly differentiate this iteration of Kal-El, Gunn could take influence from the Legion of Super Heroes cartoon and make the story an origin for them and a liftoff point for the cosmic realm.

RELATED: James Gunn Explains How His Superman Movie Isn’t an Origin Story


Legion of Super Heroes Can Make Superman a Leader

Legion of Superheroes Superman Season Two Cast

For all intents of purposes, the Legion of Super Heroes cartoon (which aired in 2006 for 26 episodes) was more of a Superboy story. There, the Legion came to Smallville and plucked Clark away from the Kent farm, taking him on missions in the 31st century. He worked with the likes of Bouncing Boy, Brainiac 5, Lightning Lad, Phantom Girl, Saturn Girl, Timber Wolf and Chameleon Boy against a plethora of villains.

They visited many worlds and protected aliens from the likes of the Fatal Five, Imperiex, and the Dominators, which allowed Clark to fill that gap in his soul left by a destroyed Krypton. Thus, by traversing unique pockets, Gunn can allow Superman to cut loose against powerful heavy hitters and work past what’s been done in Smallville, Superman and Lois (with the Kent boys), Man of Steel and even the Christopher Reeve films. This sort of self-discovery and destiny in space would sate angry fans who wanted Cavill to be unleashed, with a new Kal-El leading the Legion and helping them learn more about the heroes they hold within.

RELATED: Henry Cavill Explains Abrupt Superman Departure

Legion of Super Heroes Can Mix the Old and New DCU

Legion of Superheroes Brainiac and Brainiac 5

This narrative fits Gunn’s style, as he’s done the cosmic realm pretty well with Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy and is an expert at ensembles. Gunn is also great at making obscure characters household names. He even oversaw the first detailed Thanos debut in-film with Josh Brolin, opening a door for the likes of Mongol and Darkseid.

Seeing as the Legion of Super Heroes cartoon also had the Sun-Eater and an evil Brainiac, this not only gives Superman his iconic foes, but it turns the Legion into a galactic force the way Marvel hasn’t really done yet with the Nova Corps. On top of that, Superman, with these heroes, would wash away the bad aftertaste of the Justice League debacle and be untethered to an Earth that the DCU is still trying to finesse.

That’d allow Kal-El to shine as a breath of fresh air, expand to the Green Lanterns if need be, and let Gunn and co. determine what to do with Wonder Woman, Shazam and Aquaman amid rumors of a reboot. Last but not least, thanks to the Legion bending space and time, Gunn can pull from the older films and new universes to truly map out what the DC Universe is, with the Legion being the unlikely anchor for wondrous adventures.

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