Taking my cue from another, better blog, I'm engaging in a little bit of tomfoolery, just like Bully, The Little Stuffed Bull. So, in some speculative, yet goofy, writing, here are my top 5 Television Shows in the DC Universe (or Earth-1, for those keeping score at home).
- Sandman - this hit on the CW, now in its seventh year, proposes a "21st Century take on the legendary Golden Age mystery man". Tom Welling stars as Wesley Dodds, a literate loner orphaned by his parents, longing to reconnect with his brother (MIA from the Gulf War), and haunted by dreams that drive him to fight evil. Armed only with a gas mask, fedora, and special gas-emitting gun, Welling takes on evil in the guise of the Sandman, aided by his love Dian Belmont (Kristin Kreuk). His only opponent is his main rival, newspaper reporter Lee Travis (Michael Rosenbaum). Early on, the show was criticized for taking huge liberties with established lore (substituting "Exit Light, Enter Night" for Dodd's classic poem), but has gained prominence, and has begun updating other "classic heroes" such as Wildcat (who is now an ultimate fighter), Dr. Mid-Nite (a medical student with nocturnal vision, and the Flash (an athlete whose exposure to quantum particles enabled him with faster-than-light speed).
- So You Wanna Join the Doom Patrol? - Created by Seth McFarlane, this animated comedy on Fox tells the tale of Peter Griffin, aka "Flatulence Boy", and his adventures with the slightly off-beat superhero team. Despite McFarlane claiming that "it's only humor", this show has come under attack for several tasteless concepts, including repeated jokes about the Chief looking up Elasti-Girl's skirt, a blackout involving Aquaman and Charlie the Tuna, repeated references to "Beast Boy's two backs", and in one notorious instance, Adam West's voice shouting "Duck, Dr. Wayne, duck!"* at a showing of The Mark of Zorro.
- Shafted By Love - Former rock drummer/archery champ/addictions counselor Roy Harper doesn't want much - just a special person to share his life with, and to serve as parent for his young daughter. But dating's tough for him, so like many others in his situation, he stars in his own dating-related reality show. Every week, Roy dates a new woman, who competes with other women for his - and his daughter's - affections. His only goal - a woman who can "eat really spicy chili and survive the next morning."
- Law & Order: Green Lantern Corps - "In the 3600 sectors of the universe, interstellar conflicts, crimes and offenses are handled by an elite group known as the Green Lantern Corps. These are their stories". This popular spin-off of the long-running franchise tells slightly fictionalized accounts of recently declassified Justice League files. With an ever evolving cast - and with its cutting edge use of CGI - this show attempts to bring a much more diverse style of storytelling to this popular show.
- Jonah Hex - This gritty western on HBO tells the tale of Jonah Hex - was he a disgraced Civil War hero? Bounty Hunter? Last bastion of morality in the Old West? This series shows that, unlike Metropolis, sometimes heroism takes on a darker tone. You won't see any steampunk/science fiction-y elements....just a good, solid take on an American legend.
So please, feel free to share this amongst your fellows, and/or link to it. Just a non-pranky way to celebrate April Fool's Day.
*By the way, the phrase "Duck, Dr Wayne, Duck!" has been shared with the Zone 4 podcast crew for possible t-shirts. Watch for them!