SUPERMAN: RED SON (2020)
Director: Sam Liu
Stars: Jason Isaacs, Amy Acker
Rating: 8 out of 10
Supes is a difficult character to get behind. A lot of people find him too powerful. That he's just a 'nice guy' and, as such, doesn't have a layered personality. I am one of these people myself, but I have to admit that Superman becomes infinitely more interesting when he's the villain.
'The Dark Knight Returns' and 'INJUSTICE' are fantastic reads, mainly because Superman is the antagonist. Maybe "villain" is a harsh word to use in those stories but I suppose if we're talking about a communist Superman, intent on spreading the Soviet way across the west, then perhaps this is his most "villainous" role yet,
Elsewhere stories always peak my interest as well. There's so much more freedom with these characters and Mark Millar clearly thought this as well whilst penning the comic. No canon to fit into, no current events to tie into, just tell a good story with these classic characters as your chess pieces. This was a no brainer to purchase once I'd heard about it, so how did the story of the Man of Steel in Mother Russia hold up in animated form?
I don't know if the animation team were pandering to the style of the original comic, or just fancied something different, but I loved how this looked in comparison to other 'Justice League'/DC animated properties of late. Superman looked like classic Superman, other than the badge. And everyone else looked good in this too. In fact they didn't just look good, they sounded good.
The voice acting was so on point. Strong russian accents did not become overbearing and ruin the believability of what was being said, a risk that wasn't taken by the award winning CHERNOBYL TV series. Every line delivered carried the weight of the drama, anger or comedy that the original comic did in my head when I first read it.
The story hasn't been stupidly modified, like recent "adaptations" they've done of classic DC comics. The action and pacing is fantastic and the whole concept really shines through. Don't watch it with the kids, as there's a few naughty words, some innuendo involved and you might end up with your children pledging to serve the Soviet Union, because Superman is a very compelling character, he isn't just a plain, over-powered "nice" guy. And when the writing and plot makes for some very interesting points, you never know. Perhaps you too will become a comrade.
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