2 Funny/Toons & Tunes: MAD – That’s What Super Friends Are For

Today we have a “2-fer” (because it falls into 2 of our categories). The following sketch comes to us courtesy of the late Cartoon Network animated series MAD. It’s a musical number about the plight of being one the DC super heroes who aren’t the DC Trinity. Enjoy “That’s What Super Friends Are For”.


Nerdvana: Castles in the Air (aka Dee-Luxe Apartments in the Sky)

Today’s Nerdvana focuses on one of my favorite fantasy/sci-fi locations: the futuristic self-contained floating city.

The rent on these things must be reedonkulous!

The rent on these things must be reedonkulous!

Two of my favorite examples of this are from the comics. From DC, we have Supertown.


Though it’s official name is Celestial City, it was named Supertown by the young Gods known as the Forever People. Supertown is a vast flying structure that constantly glides over the skies of the planet New Genesis.

Supertown is the only technologically advanced structure on the otherwise unspoiled paradise planet of New Genesis, and is designed in such a way as to in no way interfere with the planet’s ecosystem. all the Gods have abodes in the city. And it is in the towers of this city that the Chamber of the Source is located, where the Highfather communes with the Eternal Source by watching the flaming messages written on the Wall of Prophecy.
The entire city is riddled with statues, paintings and other beautiful works of art which echo the Gods’ celebration of life and happiness. In fact the city itself is so beautiful that visitors often stare in awe of the majestic complex, rightfully believing they have come to heaven.

The colors, dude, the colors! There's reddy-purpley, orangey-pinky, bluey-whitey-silvery, greeny-magenta-purpley...Bro, I an so baked!

The colors, dude, the colors! There’s reddy-purpley, orangey-pinky, bluey-whitey-silvery, greeny-magenta-purpley…Bro, I am so baked!

The city possesses impressive mobility, and is capable of interstellar travel, demonstrated when Darkseid’s use of the Micro Mark cause the destruction of New Genesis. The Supertown was simply jettisoned off of the planet awaiting its doom and relocated to another planet as New Genesis was rebuilt.

-Plus, Supertown is such a cool name. It’s just fun to say. Try it. Supertown! Rolls off the tongue like honey on biscuits.

On the Marvel side, there’s the City of Attilan.


Gonna fly now!


Attilan is the ancestral home of the Inhumans, a highly advanced offshoot of the human race. About seven thousand years ago, the Inhumans grew tired of centuries of persecution by their more primitive parent race, and decided to create a place of refuge for themselves. Under the leadership of King Myran, the Inhumans chose as a site for their city a small island in the northern Atlantic Ocean, located about two hundred miles southwest of Iceland. The city, which took several decades to complete, was named Attilan, a name derived from Atlantis, the former pinnacle of civilization on Earth that had vanished beneath the sea about three millennia before. Attilan has been the sole center of the Inhuman population ever since.

Attilan was relocated from its’ original location in the Himalayas, to escape the effects of Earthly pollution and disease. Attilan is currently located in the “Blue Area of the Moon,”


Dark side of the...well, you know.

Dark side of the…well, you know.


….nestled in the ruins of an ancient city built by the alien Kree whose technology gives the “Blue Area” its own artificially created atmosphere.

Now, this may come as a shock, but I’m a bit of a geek who’s not the most social person in the world.


As such, I’ve often fantasized about there being a magical, high-tech place where myself, the mutants, the mages, the mega-minds, the super artistes and other ‘special people’ could dwell, live and just plain be unique and different, enjoying all of the modern amenities away from all of those pesky normals.

Pity the name Astro City is taken.

Pity the name Astro City is taken.

But you know, maybe it’s high time the Specials reconnected with the natives down below. Maybe they’ve lived in isolation from the outside world too long. Maybe the Uppers and the Lowers should come together. Let’s see what it’s like down there.

"'MURICA! #$%* YEAH!!"

“‘MURICA! #$%* YEAH!!”


"Thug Liiife!"

“Thug Liiife!”

Never mind, I take it all back. We’re better off up here. Pour me another sparkling nectar.


Unpopular Opinions: Superboy

OK, I know that by saying the following that I’m going to risk ticking off every fan of the Young Justice animated series, but here it is: I didn’t (and still don’t) like the YJ version of Superboy. At all.

I had become a fan of Superboy (Kon EL) ever since I read the DC vs Marvel comic book mini series, and ever since then, I’ve been wanting to see Superman’s clone Conner make his animated TV debut. Alas, what we got was this.


“Frustrated grunt!”

It’s bad enough that the shows’ producers went with the T-shirt and jeans look for the character, which doesn’t even look like a super hero costume. It looks like he’s fighting in street clothes. Still, it’s better than his costume in the Amalgam universe where he was fused with Spider-Man to become Spiderboy.


No, just no.

YJ gave Superboy a completely different personality than the one that he had in the comics. This Superboy doesn’t make wise cracks. He has no sense of humor. Instead of having tactile telekinesis power that mimics Superman’s power of flight, he just is able to leap considerable distances.He broods all the time and starts dating Miss Martian…and later gets dumped by her.


Ugh! Teen soap opera drama. Pass me Mr. Bucket!


THIS is the Superboy that I wanted to see on the small screen. The Kryptonian Kid. The one with the tactile telekinesis powers and the cool black jacket. Stylin’!


The Conner from the comics was cool. he was cocky and over confident. I imagined someone like Edward Furlong (circa Terminator 2) doing Conner’s voice.

But no, we don’t get the interesting version of Superboy. That would have been too good. Instead we get stuck with this hot headed brooding lame-o with leaping powers. He was like the Hulk, only without the charisma.


“‘Ooh! Look at how dark and tormented I am!’ Sheesh, what a whiner!”

So now, DC reset it’s universe a couple more times since then and it seems that there’s yet another Superboy out there; Jonathan Samuel Kent, the son of Clark Kent and Lois Lane. I haven’t read any of the current comics yet, so I don’t have a strong opinion on this character yet, positive or negative, nor do I have any idea where Kon-El fits in with this continuity, or if he’s there at all.


Hmm…The costume’s OK. I like the jacket with the S shield on it, and the red sneakers are a nice touch. This is starting to sound like a Pop Dream…

I’ll have to read the Rebirth comics before I state how I feel about this version of Superboy, but he already has the advantage of not being the Young Justice version.

I don’t know if we’ll get a Superboy on Cartoon Network’s Justice League Action or on any other DC animated series, but if we do, please don’t let it be the Young Justice version. Even if it’s not Conner Kent, let it at least be a Superboy who doesn’t need to wear nicotine patches for his powers, one who knows what jokes are and who actually SMILES sometimes.


OK, that’s cute. I’ll give you that one, DC.


Cartoon Country: “Weaponomics” and “Club Life”

On today’s Cartoon Country, we’ll be giving our thoughts on the latest (as of this writing) 2 installments of the DC Super Hero Girls web series, “Weaponomics” and “Club Life” (a.k.a. “Clubbing”). We’ve just finished shoveling a ton o’ snow that got dumped on out doorstep over the weekend (thanks, Winter Storm Jonas!) so these will be brief and to-the-point.

First, Wonder Woman tries to make the grade in weapons’ class (with Cheetah once again rearing her jerky head) in “Weaponomics”.


And now, for the assorted ramblings:

  • So, are the teachers at this school all blind? This is the second time that Cheetah has screwed with Wondy in plain sight, and no one has noticed?
  • Why didn’t Wonder Woman just bind Cheetah with her lasso so she’d confess? It’s not like Wondy could get into more trouble; she was already in detention. Seems like a very easily solvable problem.
  • So in this universe, Cheetah and Catwoman are buds. Heh. I’m not really a Catwoman fan, but she has a decent design here. Understated, but effective in its’ simplicity. Much better than that thing she walked around in on Mortal Kombat VS DC Universe.
  • I really hope that Cheetah will eventually receive the comeuppance that she’s so begging for. This “Cheetah messes with Wonder Woman and receives no punishment for it” routine is starting to leave a bad taste in my mouth.


-Next up, Principal Waller informs Poison Ivy that she must get some extracurricular credit by joining one of those fancy-shmancy school clubs that I’ve seen so many times in fiction but never in real life.


And once again, the ramblings:

  • The daisy with a face was cute. I like how ‘un-grounded’ this series is.
  • I’ve never been a big Poison Ivy fan, but she has a great design in this series, and I can sympathize with her ‘plight’ here, having never been much of a joiner myself. To quote Groucho Marx: “I’d never join a club that would have me as a member.”
  • The Detective Club mentions a landed Kryptonian spacecraft and are looking for its’ ‘female occupant’. We all know who that is. Hopefully this means we’ll FINALLY be seeing Kara/Supergirl on the show.
  • Speaking of, Barbara Gordon is still masquerading as Babs the IT Gal. I know they’re going to address her finally donning her cape and becoming Batgirl at some point, I just wish they’d hurry up and do it already! I wonder why Babs doesn’t want to be a hero? Does she not think she’s worthy because she doesn’t have any super powers? Katana, Catwoman and Harley Quinn don’t have any powers either, and they’re students (unless we’re going by Quackerjack from Darkwing Duck‘s rules and counting wackiness as a super power).
  • I like how the alien (or mythical/otherwrldly, in Wonder Woman’s case) students have their own United Planets Club; being an outer space/outer dimension nerd, I thought that was a nice touch.
  • This is Starfire’s 3rd appearance on the show, but her first speaking appearance. Like Beast Boy, Star has her Teen Titans: TAS voice actor, Hynden Walch.
  • Miss Martian is freakin’ adorable.
  • Rocking out with the band is THE most interesting thing I’ve seen Katana do so far.
  • I really like Beast Boy’s costume here. Where can I get that paw print shirt?
  • For once we see Cheetah in a short not being a jerk to Wonder Woman.
  • I have to say, though the series’ focus is clearly on the girls (it’s in the title, fer cryin’ out loud!), I do like how the boys are portrayed here. When they do show up, they’re just regular characters, not a bunch of FRIs (Forced Romantic Interests). If we must have boy characters in a girl-centric franchise, I’d rather them be portrayed this way instead of just being obligatory boyfriends for the girls.
  • Another character’s design that we like is that of Frost (she’s not called “Killer” Frost here for obvious reasons). It’s a stark contrast to how the character looked on Justice League: TAS; here, Frost looks like a nice version of Icy from Winx Club. If Icy were to do a face turn, that’s probably what she’d look like.

-“Club Life” is my favorite episode of this series so far. More shorts like this (and the eventual appearances of Supergirl and Batgirl), please.

DC Apparently Stands for "Don’t Chuckle"

Ever wondered why Man of Steel and the Dark Knight trilogy were so grim and joyless? Well, it would seem that, according to Drew McWeeny of Hit Fix, that that Warner Bros. has applied an interesting policy when it comes to their upcoming slate of DC comic book movies. This policy can be summed up in just 2 words:

If this is to believed, then it would seem that the culprit to this current mode of thinking lies with the cinematic bomb that was the Green Lantern movie starring Ryan Reynolds, which was filled with cheesy one-liners and Reynolds’ non-stop quips, and this is also a way for DC to distinguish its’ movie franchise from arch-rival Marvel, who has made it a point to stuff as many jokes as they can in their films. However, as Drew points out, humor can be a great way to alleviate the tension of a scene as well as allowing for the suspension of disbelief, which is usually required to some degree in a comic book movie.
How do we feel about this alleged “No Jokes” policy, if true? Glad we pretended that you asked.
Damon (Silverstar):

If this is true, then it in a nutshell explains why I’m generally not that into a lot of action properties: so many of them just take themselves way too seriously. I guess DC is really trying to distinguish themselves from Marvel’s movies, but going all grim and serious really isn’t the way to go. They’ve forgotten a very basic premise: that when people go to the movies, particularly action movies, they want to go out together with their friends and family and have FUN. Just pure, escapist fun. Yeah, it’s great when the characters are badass and the story is deep and compelling and all that good stuff, but all that means nothing if the films are boring or a bummer to watch. That has little to no replay value. People are more apt to come back to a movie they had fun watching. People like to laugh, what’s wrong with laughing occasionally between explosions?

The idea that superhero stories have to be all grim and grown-up, I just can’t take that pretentious crap seriously. When your stories involve crazy do-good freaks in funky tights beating up bad guys armed with a Weather Dominator, how dark and serious is it supposed to be? The genre is already kind of silly to start with, so I don’t see the harm in having a little levity thrown in. I actually think Squirrel Girl said it best: “Things were better when the comic book world was a place you wanted to escape to, not from.”

Jason (Goldstar):

Everybody likes to laugh. What’s wrong with laughter? Man of Steel was desperately lacking in fun.

Seriously, though. I wouldn’t take a statement like that too seriously. It’s most likely just DC trying to differentiate their movie universe from Marvel’s. I mean, how can you make a movie about SHAZAM!, a story about a 12-year-old boy who is turned into a muscle bound Adonis by a wizard and who’s rogues’ gallery includes an intelligent ape and not have any jokes in it? I think that a dark, serious take on SHAZAM! would end up being more hilarious than it ever would be as a light hearted comedy.

This mentality has seemed to have seeped its’ way into the comics continuity as well;check out the murky and generally joyless New 52 titles, which are chock full of this “Look at how dark and grim and graphic and not funny and totally not for kids we are!!” attitude. It would seem that the DCAU/Brave and the Bold way of thinking is, for now, a thing of the past. The current mode of thinking at DC seems to be, “Can’t make these movies fun, lest we end up like Marvel”. And we think………


….That’s a laugh.