Wednesday, December 13, 2017

YOUR favorite verse can stop a Chaos-Spawn Invasion

So if you don’t know the villains of the first 4 of 5 arcs of Sailor Moon are beings called Chaos-Spawn, cosmic horrors that are aspects of the primordial evil known as Chaos. I LOVE them, they are the most well-designed eldritch abominations in my perspective.
But believe it or not, I think there’s a good chance your favorite verse can probably stop a Chaos-Spawn outbreak. However, despite the strength of the verse I don’t see them as particularly broken, they are actually quite fate to introduce as a test for verses. While they are horrific cosmic horrors capable of wreaking devastation through the cosmos, if you know what to do, I strongly believe any mid tier or up verse, even some of the stronger low tier verses can take them down. If your favorite verse has a decently large power variety and at least some enhanced stats, it’s totally possible for them stop an infection of these horrors. Let’s discuss how:

Chaos-Spawn 1: Queen Metalia, The Goddess of Darkness

Metalia is not a physical entity, a recurring theme among the Chaos-Spawn. Instead she is a living mass of darkness. Her goal is to expand, covering everything in her darkness.

That said, when she starts out on Earth as opposed to around a Star, she actually isn’t that powerful. While she can grow very powerful over time, more and more as she gains more and more energy, originally, she has no more impact on the physical world then a particularly malevolent shadow.
Her only really capacities early on are her ability to drain energy (something all the Chaos-Spawn can do) and her manipulative intelligence. If you have someone with good stamina and isn’t easily manipulated, you are good to go! You have a while too, as it took Metalia weeks at least to become to size of a human after energy-draining.

There is the real trouble of killing Metalia however, since Metalia is an intangible entity. If you want to harm her, you need to use either something esoteric like reality-warping or her one weakness which fortunately isn’t that uncommon in fiction and that is light powers. Light, especially Holy Light, can push on Metalia’s body like physical force does to us, and so a powerful light, especially a holy light, will be able to destroy her.

The real danger of course is if she grows too big. As she grows her rate of increase grows too at a literally exponential rate as she went from the size of a room to covering an entire planet in a few minutes. The bigger she is, the stronger a light she’ll need to beat her as her very presence becomes so monstrous it drives people looking at her insane and she eventually grows large enough to plunge the universe into eternal night, with all the stars going dark and all matter converting to stone and eventually disappearing in darkness completely, causing the universe to die in dark, cold, stillness, and suffering.

Hence the need to stop her before that.

Chaos Spawn 2: Death Phantom, The Wiseman

Like Metalia, Death Phantom is scary if he gets powerful enough, but he doesn’t actually start off that bad. Interestingly, Death Phantom started off as a human, or rather an evil spirit taken human form. In his human form he has some dangerous techniques, but he can be overwhelmed. As a human he has his supergenius intellect, his beast hands technique which gives him stretchy arms that can drain peoples’ energy, and his evil eye technique which grants him control of peoples’ minds and can also shoot energy blasts and protect from mind tricks.

Wiseman can become a threat in almost any verse if he can start hypnotizing people with the Evil Eye, but he can be put down by someone who is willing to use any real degree of super speed to hit him from the side instead of charging him straight on and getting mind controlled.

If he starts to do well, he’ll hypnotize an army of people and use his supergenius to command them, and eventually take dominion of a planet and fuse his consciousness, eventually warping it into a Black Hole, absorbing matter and energy into his singularity until giant holes rip the timeline apart and all of space and time are condensed inside an infinite singularity inside his black hole under his control, his ultimate goal being the eradication of cosmic unevenness and non-symmetry.

Note, there is a difference between beating Death Phantom and killing Death Phantom. Beating Death Phantom early on, IE killing his human manifestation is relatively simple. Killing the Death Phantom spirit is trickier, as it involves something like a spiritual banishment, or exorcism, or really anything that can affect spirits. That said beating him is really all that is needed most of the time. The positive spirits of a life-filled world like Earth will essentially hold down Death Phantom the spirit and keep it from acting. The only real trouble is if it somehow gets to an uninhabited planet to fuse with.

Chaos-Spawn 3: Pharaoh 90, The Tau Overlord

So, Pharaoh 90 is theoretically a lot harder then Queen Metalia or Death Phantom because it starts out cosmically strong. Pharaoh 90 is essentially a cosmic psionic entity, who’s telepathy commands the armies of Daimons that are its brood and who telekinetically moves it’s galaxy around, fusing itself with life-sustaining planets after daimon infiltration, and slowly causing a cosmic convergence where dimensions are merged into it’s weird Tau Dimension and the Daimon infest all the cosmos. Given its raw telekinetic power and it’s variety of abilities

That said Pharaoh 90 has a pretty big weakness, that being its mind. Pharaoh 90 while smarter than the average human is very unintelligent for a Chaos-Spawn, and is not as smart as some real-life earth humans. It’s psionics also act as a major weakness. Its telepathic thoughts used to command the daimon are so big and powerful that even the most low-tier telepaths can hear it’s “thoughts”. 
Likewise, any amount of mind hax, like hypnosis or brainwashing would give command of Pharaoh 90 and thus victory.

Without mind hax it’s significantly harder, but a smart enough character could theoretically trick Pharaoh 90 in some way, perhaps by convincing the Tau Overlord that some section of the cosmos is riper for life then the Earth.

Chaos-Spawn 4: Queen Nehelenia, the Nightmare Queen

The big one, and definitely the harder to beat for most verses. Queen Nehelenia was sealed away inside her Dark Dimension by Queen Serenity the first. She has turned her world of darkness into an endless procession of mirror dimensions to reflect her nightmares, which she sees as her own beauty.
So good news about this one, Nehelenia has no reason to strike at most verses. She attacked the Sailor Moon Earth out of a desire for revenge against the people of the Moon and to take the Silver Crystal which sealed her away, so she could get out. Without those things there is no reason for her to care about most worlds. Other good news, because of Serenity’s seal Nehelenia’s ability to impact the real world is profoundly limited. She can only do so through her projection, an avatar of herself, called Zirconia.

Bad news, if she does attack most verses, Zirconia is still a monster to deal with. Zirconia is at least planet level given she said that to her destroying a planet is as easy as breaking a baby’s neck, as well as covered a planet in darkness. She’s also FTL by scaling, which makes this unhelpful. That said, it’s not as hopeless as it looks.

First off Zirconia is vain, just as the Nightmare Queen is, and flattery and manipulation can get one close enough to her to launch a surprise attack. Likewise, Zirconia doesn’t go for outright destruction, instead preferring to show people their deepest nightmare and bask in it’s “beauty”. A character with true courage can break through one of these nightmares, which would shock Zirconia and give them a second to act against her. Likewise, Zirconia and Nehelenia have little idea of the concept of working together with others, and so things like distractions and the like can also buy people time to use some form of ability on her. It is possible through cleverness and virtue to get off an ability of Zirconia even if you aren’t actually as strong or fast as her.

Now as to what will stop her, matter/energy manipulation probably will not give her nature as a Chaos-Spawn and the fact that she isn’t actually made of matter-energy. Likewise dimensional manipulation likely won’t work given she can travel between dimension at will. That said, they do have minds, and are implied to have souls, so both of those should work, time manipulation would work but the really big one is Sealing. Sealing is a particular sore spot for Nehelenia given how it was originally she was defeated, and sealing would absolutely definitely work on Zirconia if it can be managed.

On the Matter of being Tricked or Manipulated:
So that is for the most part what it takes to stop a Chaos-Spawn outbreak, however there is one more factor that’s honestly possibly the most important. Namely on the matter of how to stop the Chaos-Spawn from manipulating people to get them on their side.

The Chaos-Spawn manage to convince beings of the cosmos, of existence to turn against existence, to side with the aspects of non-existence themselves. Seemingly this doesn’t make sense right?

But what the Chaos-Spawn do is actually both realistic and sinister, which is that they exploit what you want, whatever you are willing to have at any price.

“I want him to love me!”
“I want to have all the power!”
“I don’t want her to die!”
“I want to be young forever!”

The Chaos-Spawn whisper to people promises of the world they want, of the things they want and that they are willing to be rid of the current world to get. They take advantage of the tiny hatred of the world that festers in the heart. That little bit of self-justifying hatred that says “This part of the world shouldn’t exist, I want it gone”. They exploit hatred of the current world to get people to feed them the energy and services they need. You got what you wanted, the world you hated a little bit is gone…

That is why Usagi is the hero of the story that can stop them, she is the one who loves and accepts the world as it is, and doesn’t want to force it to be something else.

To be able to beat the Chaos-Spawn requires powers and abilities, but really what is needed to beat them more then anything is just the willingness to love the world and everything in it, and to not demand that the world be what you want it to be. It is this reason that when Beryl merges with Metalia in the musicals she says that as long as hatred exists in the hearts of humans, she can return. The Chaos-Spawn live in the tiny festering self-justifying hatreds we hold, and that grow until it consumes us, and to defeat them is to let go of our hatred.

Friday, November 24, 2017

Death Analysis: Zatanna

Death Analysis: The Backwards-Talking Princess of Presdigitation, The Mistress of Magic, The show of a life, the double Z, Zatanna Zatara

Ladies and Gentlemen, prepare yourself for a show like no other. What do you hear when I say "magic"? A trick of the light? A quick hand movement? Smoke and mirrors? Perhaps magic is but smoke...but perhaps the universe itself is but smoke. Prepare to have you sense of reality challenged, to be shown a world beyond ours, where impossibility serves only as an invitation. Allow me to introduce our star...The Magic Maid Zatanna Zatara!


Young 15-year old Zatanna was the daughter of the great Stage Magician Giovanni Zatara and was determined to live up to the family name. They would regularly tour together and Zatanna eagerly took up instruction from her father. Then one day she came home to find her father missing. Looking through her father's books Zatanna discovered to her amazement that her lost mother was actually one of the homo magi, a sub-species of humans who had founded Atlantis and were gifted with the ability to naturally perform magic. She found further that her father was no plain street magician but was in fact a real magician and used to be a superhero. Determined to find her father, Zatanna began researching through her father's spellbooks, learning the art of magic. The events are chronicled here.

She would search aimlessly for 20 years for him across the worlds and dimensions until with the Justice League of America's help she was finally reunited. Zatanna then joined the Justice League as their official magician, and was instrumental to fighting for the cause of Justice across the worlds.

Zatanna's magic is essentially the power of suggestion, willing yourself or others to enter into a different reality. Zatanna is so adept at the power of magic she can suspend the laws of nature with just a few backwards words. Zatanna rarely uses her power to the fullest, because it is difficult to retain one's connection to normalcy when one can change reality at will. Indeed when a normal human is given access to Zatanna's power, it causes him to go insane. Despite this, Zatanna is incredibly powerful even for a magic-user. The first rule of magic is that man is as strong as he allows himself to be but Zatanna seems very at ease with usage of magic and being far beyond the limits of humanity. This is likely due to the heavy magic used in her conception. When Zatanna was born, Zatara imbued in her his four spellbooks, the 4 elements, giving her all the greatest qualities of humanity to the extent he could. She was his greatest spell, a magician with a kind heart, graceful body, keen mind, and strong spirit. These are the tools with which she casts her magic.

This blog treats all Zatanna comics as canonical, because they are. Not only did DC Rebirth make them all canon, but the Magicians have never been bound by canonicity due to their ability to choose realities at will. As an example, Zatara in the Silver Age conjured up his first enemy from the beginning of the Golden Age and spoke of their previous encounter.

Physical Strength/Skill:

While she is primarily a magic-based fighter, Zatanna can engage in a little fisticuffs from time to time. She has knocked out Felix Faust, a powerful magic-user with a punch and she has out-meleed supernatural hunters

Physical Durability:

Even more impressive, she has survived the super-breath of Pre-Crisis Supergirl. Given Pre-Crisis Kryptonians could freeze or push stars with their super-breath this is quite the achievement. She has also twice survived taking hits from New 52 Wonder Woman, once brainwashed (1) (2). The same Wonder Woman could stagger Apollo, literally the Sun, with her strikes. She has also survived a hole in spacetime.

Mundane Skills:

Zatanna is skilled in several mundane skills, including stage magic. Such things sometimes allow her to gain an advantage against her enemies who aren't used to such material means of deception.

Of the stage magic tricks, Zatanna is particularly good at sleight of hand. She is also highly trained in escape artistry, having learned how to get out of a straightjacket underwater in Kindergarten

Magical Equipment:

A Magician is handicapped without her useful tools. Among her most-used magical equipment, Zatanna can summon a crystal ball to give her answers to her problems. This Crystal Ball can also tell her the future. She also possesses a flying carpet to take her where she wants to go in style. She also tends to carry a wand, although this seems purely for show.



Shadowcrest is Zatanna's magical home, which she can teleport herself and others to at any time to get a homefield advantage. It functions as her batcave, with magical books and artifacts. The house is bigger on the inside then it is on the outside. One of the rooms in Shadowcrest contains a whole galaxy and yet others contain monsters too powerful for Mary Marvel with Black Adam's powers to fight. But the most dangerous thing in Shadowcrest is also one of the strongest trump cards in the DCU: The Gnosis Sphere

Also if someone in Shadowcrest is misbehaving, Zatanna can banish that person from Shadowcrest and make it lost to them forever.

The Basics of Magic:

Just to explain some of the basics of Zatanna's magic first. Zatanna does not actually need to speak backwards to cast magic. Here she is putting The Top to sleep without speaking. Speaking backwards just sharpens the concentration and makes it easier. Her writing can also be used for this purpose.

At any given time, Zatanna has HUNDREDS of spells prepared, even ignoring her amazing improvisation skills. Originally Zatanna could only use White Magic and so was vulnerable to Black Magic, although after learning Black Magic, she no longer has this vulnerability.

Elemental Magic:

For a time, Zatanna was limited to merely the manipulation of the 4 elementals imbued inside her. As such, her manipulation of these 4 forces is particularly close. She can call the winds between the worlds to carry her away from danger or create a wind cage around a demon. Her fire magic is strong enough to throw Pre-Crisis Supergirl although this is likely at least in part due to her magic vulnerability, though her fire has also burned Swamp Thing before. She can also turn blood to fire.

Also while not strictly the normal 4 elements she has frozen both The Top and a fire-based supervillain before. Zatanna has also twice shot magic lightning from her fingertips (1) (2)

Eventually this restriction would be lifted and Zatanna gained the ability to affect all cosmic forces.


Zatanna is quite quick, only amplified by her ability to magically fly. 

She is able to avoid gunfire and has raised her hands and spoke in the time it took bullets to reach from from a close range. This would imply she is in the hypersonic range, which is consistent both with the fact that she flew at seemingly the same speed as Hawkman and Red Tornado and flew from the United States to the Himalayas in a short amount of time.

Even faster then this, Zatanna has seemingly flown at the same speed as Pre-Crisis Supergirl. However it is unlikely Supergirl was going full-out given Kryptonians regularly hold back the abilities. Still Kryptonians like Pre-Crisis Superboy have casually broken the time barrier many times...Zatanna is also able to react to people like Lobo in motion

Spacetime Magic:

When she really needs to get around, Zatanna can play around with the passage of spacetime. 

Zatanna can easily teleport a group up to the Hall of Justice. To even begin to challenge her, you would require transport across dimensions. Here we see her travel between dimensions casually. Zatanna can enter magical realms where no human could exist. It is the specific talent of the Magicians to jump between realities. Zatanna can also enter the neutral area between realities and has teleported the JLA to the mystical realm of the god Anansi, likely in the Sphere of the Gods. 

Zatanna can control time as easily. As a teenager, she was able to slow the flow of time. She can if wanted peel back the layers of time and spirit or conversely repair holes in the timestream. She can go back in time or send other people back, even to the beginning of time. She can even cause time go backwards. Even greater, she, Madame Xanadu, and Nightmare Nurse froze time across the entire multiverse, suggesting she along should have at least universal time stop.


Zatanna can seal enemies away in physical objects like when she sealed Allura, her father's most dangerous enemy, into a bottle. She can also seal enemies in her hat


Zatanna can create illusory copies of herself to help her do battle


Zatanna can create a magical shield to protect her or the JLA. This shield is strong enough to protect against Lobo or even the ghost of her father. This shield can reflect attacks, including the power of Black Adam being used by Mary Marvel. The shield can grow large enough to protect entire buildings.

Healing Magic:


The big one. Zatanna does this A LOT, so just gonna list best examples. She is particularly fond of turning enemies into toads. She has also turned an enemy into a fluffy bunny. She has turned an audience into vampire bats to help Batman fight the Joker and changed poison gas to oxygen.

Still not impressed? What about larger then a mere human. She has turned oceans of lava into fields of daisy. When brainwashed she covered the moon in an ocean and made the Earth fly. She has even made a dress with supposedly "real stars" for herself. 

Or perhaps you would prefer REAL small. Zatanna has proven capable of affecting even atoms, such as removing the Red Sun radiation from Superman.



Zatanna never fights alone! Summoning servants is a very basic magic.

The forces of darkness are bound to Zatanna's will. She can summon demons, even a fire demon strong enough to fight Pre-Crisis Superman. She can summon the Hellish Nightmare Nurse, a powerful magic user in her own right. And her magic can even awaken the Old Gods

More benevolently, her magic can summon other Justice League Members.

Destruction Magic:

The Mistress of Magic can be most scary when angered into destroying. Her magic is powerful enough to shake a building around her merely as a side-effect of her casting. She has forced a robot to explode and when Lobo made her lose her father again, she caused him to bleed and flayed the skin from his body. She can create a year's worth of sunlight in a second and is implied to be able to sink Atlantis. 

And this is only the beginning. Zatanna managed to briefly put down Starbreaker, a Universal Threat who previously soloed the JLA. She has broken a magical barrier that Nightmare Nurse and Phantom Stranger couldn't. She has cast a spell powerful to tear down the very walls of reality, which created a huge explosion purely as a side-effect. In her rage, she can destroy the whole universe.

Soul Magic:

Mind Magic:

Zatanna's magic gives her passive telepathy allowing her to sense anger, trouble, mystical influences or mystical vibrations. She can also telepathically contact other.

Beyond this, she has telekinetic and psychokinetic powers. Enough to throw the Martian Manhunter. Zatanna can make people lose memories. She can change someone's personality, such as turning Doctor Light the sadistic psycho-rapist into a bumbling moron. She has even wiped her childhood friend Batman's memory and action which so haunted her, she calls it "the worst mistake I ever made".

Spirit Magic:

When dealing with evil spirits, Zatanna can dispel the spirit or trap it in a cage of it's own rage and spite. When dealing with more helpful spirits, Zatanna can call down benevolent spirits to help people or restore spiritual being.



Zatanna can grow to a much larger size to gain an advantage in combat. Like that time she grew to the size of a dimension.

Though that is a bit...ambigious. Her best size manipulation feat is her battle with Zor. In this fight Zatanna and Zor's body, much like Zatanna's old father Zatara, grew to the size of large planets. In this form Zatanna was tough enough to be thrown hard enough to break reality and was powerful enough to destroy Zor, who had become a living universe.

Zatanna, should it prove helpful, can also shrink down as well.


Arguably what all of Zatanna's abilities are, Zatanna can do such trivial tricks as suspending gravity and turning night to day. She can change someone's gender and history for a bit of fun and it is directly said that her and Constantine magic can warp the universe.

Existence Erasure:

Power Manipulation:

Zatanna can alter the powers of other people if she prefers them to not have the powers they have. She can transfer powers from one person to another and can give herself the powers and personality of other people if she wants to be like them.


Zatanna can magically impose silence on others which can be helpful if her opponent is a mage who needs to speak


Zatara can remove a curse or cause a spell to cease with just as much ease as any other spell. Her metamagic is so good she can counter the magic of Black Lantern Zatara, she can control other sorcerers' magic, and when Superman temporarily had Zatanna's magic though was extremely unskilled with it, he was able to return all the magic of the magic dimension back to it

She also gave Batman a charm to dispel all magic even to the level of Circe for a brief time. She has also taught Superman how to fight against magical foes. 

Magical Potential:

Zatanna's potential as a magic-user eclipses her father. She rarely uses even a fraction of her full power to preserve her normality. Truthfully, with her internal magic reserve, Zatanna is the most powerful member of the Justice League. She is one of the most powerful sorcerers in all dimensions and the Quintessance, the group of 5 cosmic beings that oversee the multiverse, count her as a powerful future ally. She along with the other Sorcerers of Earth were able to give The Spectre enough power to battle the Anti-Monitor evenly, while Anti-Monitor was becoming one of the Presence's aspects, their battle being powerful enough to shatter all of creation and reboot the Pre-Crisis Canon to Post-Crisis Canon. Even an infinitesimal part of that would be far multiversal.

But not even this compares to her greatest feat...

Ladies and Gentleman, you have seen Zatanna perform many mind-bending feats so far, but this next one will shake you to your soul, please hold on, and if you have a history of heart conditions you may wish to stop reading right now. The rest, prepare to be taken to the ultimate, the absolute, the world beyond all worlds.

At one point, Zatanna and her father were called as a group of the strongest magic-users to oversee the battle of the forces of Heaven and Hell against a being that made Anti-Monitor seem minor. The Great Evil Beast, the Anti-Presence, the infinite darkness that seeks to consume ALL. It was too much for the poor magic-users, and to protect his daughter, Zatara took the whole of the Great Evil Beast inside him and managed to survive very briefly.

Much later Zatanna would encounter Pralaya, the feminine form of The Great Evil Beast. She is the darkness that is the unconscious of God, Brahman's sleep, the end of all things physical and metaphysical. She pervaded existence and tore it and destroy it leaving nothing...

or so she thought!

From deep within Pralaya, non-existence itself, Zatanna maintained the mental projections of herself and Constantine. They quickly created a new Swamp Thing before Pralaya found them. Zatanna's power was able to hold off even Pralaya, non-existence in it's entirety briefly allowing Swamp Thing to tap into the World Tree inside Pralaya and reset all of creation.

And that was how our dear Magic Maid saved all of creation. 

Related image

  • Used Palindrome to defeat a time manipulator who reversed her actions so the magic would still work
  • Took the ring off John Stewart's finger
  • Through sheer willpower, regains conscious as a puppet
  • Escapes the Beginning of Time which shows your desires as reality through willpower
  • John Constantine, her ex-boyfriend, had to resort to begging for her help
  • In her first magic battle, tricked Zatara's strongest enemy
  • Lead the Justice League Dark
  • Is the Justice League of America's official Magician
  • Has Several times overcome her father when he was brainwashed or otherwise not himself
  • Defeated Zor a magic user who had become a whole universe
  • Led the Magic Team that reconstructed the rock of eternity, issuing in the 10th Age of Magic
  • The Spectre has given praise to Zatanna's soul as pure
  • Fought along with the other Sorcerers of Earth to aid the Spectre against the Anti-Monitor
  • Stopped Pralaya, briefly holding off her raw power, and outwitting her leading to the reconstruction of the whole of creation


Big one first, if she is stopped from speaking her ability to cast spells is greatly limited. She can get around it to some extent, but it is difficult. She also rarely uses her full power because of it's dangerous instability and capacity to break apart everything she knows and loves about the universe.

Due to the sheer power of her magic, she has to be very careful with it. If she pushes herself too hard, the magic will fail, and she might even tear herself apart. And for all her magical power she can't revive the dead.

Zatanna is a complete daddy's girl. She loves her father and everything he stood for. Her dream is to live up to him and to make him proud.

Besides this Zatanna is a mischievous but noble person who blends the light and dark as any magician must. She is naughty enough to use her power for...rather impure reasons but her heart is noble enough that The Spectre itself is forced to admit it. While she is prone to sarcasm and light-heartedness like making her ringtone "every little thing she does is magic" yet is also a true friend to misfits (and rabbits) and was courageous enough to charge Amazo without her powers.

The line of Magicians of which Zatanna is emblematic of is representative the darker back of DC Comics, the smokey and shadowy area of causation and secrets of why things are. When the hero beats the villain, always behind the scenes are demons trying to tempt the hero to fail and some mystic or magician to drive them away. Zatanna in all her mysterious aloofness yet deepfelt emotion is that dark ocean, concealing a secret power beyond all normal conception of how power should be. 

Good night ladies and gentlemen.

Between Tiers 10 and 5 normally, Tier 1 at max
Between Planet and Universe Level DC in most realities, Omniversal at highest
At Least Building Level Durability, possibly Star Level, Galaxy Level with Shield, Universe Level in some realities
At least Hypersonic Speed, Possibly MFTL, MFTL Reflexes/Attack Speed
Skilled Fighter
Superhuman Physical Strength
Skilled at Stage Magic
Magical Artifacts
Control of the Elements
Inter-Dimensional Travel
Spacetime Control
Magical Shield
Attack Reflection
Energy Manipulation
Can affect the Astral, Mental, and Spirtual Planes
Size Manipulation
Dimension Manipulation
Existence Erasure
Power Manipulation
Can Impose Silence
-Can't use full power very efficiently
-Needs to be in certain realities to use certain level of power
-Needs to speak to use powers very efficiently
-Can't resurrect

Possible Opponent:

Zatanna vs Scarlet Witch: 

Apparently these two are DC and Marvel equivalents of each other. Can't comment on the fight other then that since I don't really know Marvel.

Next Time:

Saturday, November 18, 2017

JL Thoughts (I loved it...and might not like it very much)

Justice League is making it really hard for me to compare to other films.

I have been one of the biggest defenders of the DCEU that I am aware of for a while now. I absolutely adore the DCEU. Dawn of Justice is my second favorite movie ever, one of my favorite pieces of art ever. I absolutely loved both Man of Steel and Wonder Woman giving them the highest rating I can 5/5. Suicide Squad I thought was very well made, without any major flaws, and had a lot of highlights but was stylized in a way that was not my particular favorite type of style, the sort of anarchistic punk style which, to be fair, fits the characters.

These films were clearly the apex of superhero films.

1: Dawn of Justice
2: Man of Steel/Wonder Woman (The Two were about comparable in my eyes, Superman having a better first part whereas Wonder Woman had the better second part)
3: The Best superhero movies from other films lines (Dark Knight, Spider-Man 2, Captain America 3). Suicide Squad was about at this level in my opinion.

But I…don’t know how to compare Justice League to these films.

Let me say the biggest thing in it’s defense: I had an absolute blast watching it. I felt great watching it.

But…was that the heat of the moment plus my pre-conceived desire to like it?

I am writing this blog mostly to try and talk out with myself how I actually feel about this movie.
So the big thing I’m worried about is that it won’t have the depth the other movies, especially Dawn of Justice, had to rewatch over and over and to reconsider and to think about again at some later point. Man of Steel, Dawn of Justice, Suicide Squad, Wonder Woman…I think about all of these fairly often. Their themes and philosophies I have woven into my life. They are constantly resonating with what I see around me. Will Justice League be the same way?

What are the major themes of Justice League as a film and a piece of art? I say that and I’m not actually sure which to me indicates a problem. The biggest one is the need for unity, what with the three tribes uniting to stop Steppenwolf to be echoed by the JL uniting to stop him. However….that’s not very much to go off of, especially compared to the other films.

All the DCEU films so far have been about what DC as a whole and DC Rebirth is about, the greatness of humanity, the power of the human spirit to prevail.
In Man of Steel we saw people constantly acting heroically inspired by Superman to do the right thing against the existential alien threat, like military generals standing up to Faora, or Perry White helping to save Jenny from the debris, or Lois Lane willingly going with Superman on the alien ship, or Martha Kent telling off Zod etc.

In Dawn of Justice, we see a Batman and Superman who have no knowledge of each other being manipulated into fighting by outside forces but being united together by their shared humanity, as well as other themes of media manipulation, of not idolizing or demonizing people, but accepting that they are just people like you and me trying to do the right thing, of the nature of memory and the significance of heroism. Honestly if people understood the “maybe he’s just a guy trying to do the right thing” it would probably REALLY help and alleviate a lot of our big contemporary political issues…

Suicide Squad was about how even the dregs and outcasts of society are really noble individuals internally. Harley Quinn might protest “we’re the bad guys, it’s what we do”, but in the end she gives up being with her puddin’ for her friends and it’s his love for his daughter that gets Deadshot twice over to stop Enchantress.

Wonder Woman was about the nature of why people do bad things, and how each person is fighting an internal struggle just as she was against Ares, that you can’t force people to do the right thing, but only love can help them realize it’s what they want.

Does Justice League convey that theme or really any number of consistent themes?

I have only watched it once so far so it’s hard to say, I might have been so caught up in it that I just didn’t notice a lot, which happens.

Make no mistake I was greatly enjoying watching it the first time, especially Superman fighting the other League Members (though I have no idea where people get the impression he was somehow super different then he was in the previous films. After he regains his memories he seemed exactly the same to me.)

I’ve already mentioned the theme of unity but what other themes did I notice in Justice League? 

Justice League carries over a theme that has been present through the DCEU which is parenthood, and how it shapes people. Let me give examples from the prior DCEU films first:
1: Man of Steel is just loaded with parent imagery. It is Kal-El’s natural birth that gives him the free will to choose what he wants to be instead of being genetically forced into a role
2: There’s a really important line where Pa Kent reassures young Clark that “you are my son”, that the lack of biological connection is not as important as their bond of love and raising
3: Superman’s first battle with Zod is because Zod threatened his mother
4: In Dawn of Justice Batman was of course formed by his parent’s death as is usual
5: But it goes on to make a beautiful connection where Clark trying to get Bruce to save his mother’s life instead of his breaks through to Bruce that Clark isn’t some alien monster but a person with a mother just like the scared kid he once was.
6: Lex Luthor’s motivation is shaped by his abusive parenthood and convinces him that power is always corrupt
7: In Suicide Squad Deadshot through the whole movie is motivated by his love for his daughter
8: Harley Quinn in her fantasy brought on by Enchantress is the mother of Joker’s children, which is a small character point because it shows a perhaps subcouncious desire of her to reform herself and The Joker to have the stability needed for a family
9: El Diablo is motivated by the loss of his wife and children that he burned up because he couldn’t control his powers and his anger
10: In Wonder Woman the relationship between Diana and Hippolyta is obviously based around Hippolyta being Diana’s mother and her desire to protect Diana
11: Diana sharing the same bloodline as Ares becomes important near the end where she calls him brother as she kills him

This is continued on in Justice League
1: Cyborg says that his father doesn’t have a son anymore, referring to his loss of his own humanity in his mind, which shapes his early antagonistic behavior and shows the blame he assigns on his father saying that he should have died
2: Flash is motivated by wanting to get his father out of prison and until the JL came along was content to “run in place”, his familial duty to his father trapping him in a go nowhere life (almost ironic given his powers), even against his father’s wishes
3: Aquaman is motivated by his parental abandonment which explicitly is stated to be the reason why he should be doing things, that his absence of parents is what means he should be acting
4: Not sure how this works into the symbolism but it’s the mother-daughter relationship of Diana and Hippolyta that allows Hippolyta to warn Diana of the threat of Steppenwolf since Diana recognizes Hippolyta’s signal
5: Might be missed opportunity or it could be there and I just didn’t notice it but Batman’s parents don’t get brought up even as a passing mention in this movie despite all the familial connections to it, at least I don’t recall it coming up.

So, Justice League does continue the theme of parenthood, and it has theme of unity…anything else?
Not so much, and it’s possibly part of the shorter timeframe. Which leads me into thinking about Whedon taking control of the film.

A lot of DCEU fans disliked the addition of Whedon one-liners like Batman saying “I didn’t bring a sword” when he gets into the Nightcrawler or goofy moments like after Flash gets Diana her sword how he faceplants into the ground.

I’m gonna be honest, um….I don’t LIKE those parts, but I also didn’t mind them. They just of didn’t impact me really.

What does annoy me is Whedon cut out for those parts a lot of Synder’s parts supposedly, but I don’t blame Whedon himself for that, instead I blame Warner Bros for arbitrarily cutting down the movie size. If it was allowed to be 3 hours I think a lot of the problems I do have with the movie, like the missing Synder content and the truncated final fight would be alleviated. Whedon had 2 hours to work with though so I dislike what he did at some points, but I don’t blame him for it, it’s something he really shouldn’t have had to do in the first place.

Did Whedon add anything I like to the film? I don’t know how much but I do know at least one scene he added which I liked, which was Batman telling Alfred the reason they need Superman isn’t his powers but because “he’s more human than me”. A little cliché for DC at this point but that was handled pretty well. I was blown away to here that he purportedly added Memoryless Superman asking Batman if he bleeds as a callback to Dawn of Justice. Never would have thought it.
Basically, what I’m saying is, I think the Extended Edition if/when it comes will be absolutely amazing even more so then the film was.

So, what do I mean when I say that I love but I might not like it very much. What I’m getting at is I don’t know how much depth there really is for me to go back into like the other films. The other 4 films I could watch all day, and I’m worried this one will come off as just an action piece spectacle in comparison.

I can see the logic that team-up movies should be action piece spectacles and the philosophical bits should be saved for solo movies. Avengers 1 is pretty much an action piece spectacle if you are being honest with yourself. The most interesting part of that movie on any kind of deeper level is Cap and Tony exchanging the lines “Big Man in a suit of armor, take that away what are you?” “…Everything special about you came out of a bottle.” But for the most part it’s clearly just to have them together and bask in the coolness of the idea.

Yeah, Justice League clearly does that. They even have the same problem of the villain not being at all threatening at the end, capable of clearly being beaten by one member of the team.
But, art to me shouldn’t just be an adrenaline rush if it wants to be really good. You shouldn’t be watching just to get your blood rushing. It should be emotionally moving, or thought provoking or something that makes you care 10 minutes after it ends. And Justice League definitely made me care, otherwise I wouldn’t be writing this. Will this pleasant buzz this movie gave me last? I don’t know.

My thoughts about Justice League right now are that it’s at the very least a really good movie and a 4/5 about on the level of Suicide Squad even if it stops giving me the pleasant glowy feeling when I think about it for enough time. If that feeling doesn’t wear off, OR they come out with an extended edition that gives it the same depth and intensity of the previous films OR I watch it again and realize it WAS there but I was missing it, then it will probably be a 5/5 movie about on par with Man of Steel and Wonder Woman. My thoughts might change but that’s how I currently see the movie.  

As a sidenote, if you want to see purportedly what Snyder and Whedon personally contributed to the movie there is supposedly a leak that says:

Friday, November 17, 2017

Respect 1930s DC Comics (And my next Death Analysis Trailer)

I am going to see Justice League! In celebration of that fact I am going to release the feats for DC comics up through the 1930s. The Golden Age is where the DCEU seems inspired from so please enjoy this early DC Goodness

Welcome all, welcome all. Witness things you've never seen before, dream't before! Men gifted with the titanic power to rival the Old Gods with strength and speed and smarts more then you've ever seen! With their powers they can shape the world, bend the forces of nature, for good or evil! Do you want to the curtain pulled back, to behold the world of these superhumans?

This is the sorcerer of Isis, bestowed with the magicks of Ancient Egypt! With his magic he can sense the presence of spirits, and attack them with hurricane winds, the flight of arrows, or animated statues. With his superhuman speeds he can evade the Master Magician Zatara, and with an incantation he can turn his foes into dust 

The modern Sherlock Holmes, The Batman is the Gotham Avenger, trained to physical perfection and mastery of science!

With such training, it should not be such a surprise that the Batman is fast enough to regularly appear behind criminals without their knowledge. The Batman is able to avoid bullets from a close range and can move even at the speed of thought! The speed of thought, should it be literally the speed of the transmission of signals across the neurons of the brain can move between 31 and 53 meters per second. From his training, the Batman has learned other skills like being able to disguise his voice of any other persons. And from his incredible willpower, Batman has gained the ability to resist hypnosis

Batman, as the modern man does not go into investigations bare-handed. His suit is able to resist bullets shot at close range. His gloves are really suction gloves with powerful adhensives, and also in his suit pellets of choking gas are kept. And his boot carries a steel blade in case occasion arises for hidden blade. He also carries his signature weapon of combat, the Batarang modeled after the Boomerang. Here we also see the Batplane, his signature vehicle to get around quickly, capable of emitting a smokescreen to disguise it's presence.

Gasp in horror at the night adventures of the Doctor Occult! The Dark Detective is trained in the occult arts of dispelling the monsters of the night and possess unique knowledge of the weaknesses of the various minions of Night.

On the scene prowls the soldier of sleep, The Sandman! Vigilante of the law, The Gas-Masked Sentinel is a scientific genius capable of inventing a ray gun capable of breaking down material on the molecular scale to their structural elements. However his most iconic weapon is his Sand Gun which releases a puff of gas that can put anyone to sleep who inhales it.

The Man of Tomorrow, the Last Son of Krypton he is the SUPERMAN. Champion of the Oppressed and Defender of Truth, Justice, and the American Way, with a biology millions of years advanced of our own.

Superman is often stated to be "faster then a speeding bullet", is that enough for the Man of Tomorrow? Hardly! Even Lightning Speed is a breeze to him. When Superman really gets going he can even give the speed of light itself a run for it's money 1 2 3 4

Superman is gifted with a biology far beyond our own making him unaffected to poison or fatal gases. Likewise his "Super-Biology" gives him resistance to diseases that would fell any normal man, an enhanced sense of hearing and the ability to produce x-rays from his eyes and see through solid objects!

Bane of law enforcement everywhere, The Tigress remains one of the world's most wanted criminals. Ever resourceful is a master burglar and possess the innate ability to sense the presence of spirits.

Do not let your eyes deceive you! The Ultra-Humanite may seem like an old wheelchair bound man but is secretly one of the world's most dangerous scientsits, with knowledge of mad science, and a variety of dangerous traps befitting his super genius intellect. Also he knows hypnosis

Ladies and Gentlemen.....allow me to introduce our final and ultimate presentation. A man without limits, the master magician Zatara. By speaking backwards he can cause any number of effects including:

Hypnosis: On some Thugs

And now for his ultimate show for you folks....

When the Evil Saturnians began abducting people from across the universe with their Massively Faster then Light rays, planned to take over the Earth, Zatara showed their beam a useless toy compared to them, grabbing someone already being lifted off the ground by the beam before they went very far and when grabbed by the beam himself easily showed awareness despite the incredible shortness of the trip to Saturn, even changing his position midflight demonstrating his MFTL reflexes.

I hope you have enjoyed the show folks.

On My Next Time:

About something I was just talking about...

Zatara isn't the best magician ;)