World’s Finest! Podcast (S01E01) // Batman V Superman Trailer Analysis

Transcript for the video in case folks would like to read the conversation!


Ben
Hello internet! This is Ben here, a recent college grad from CSUF and future unemployed member of society.

Elaine
Hi, I’m Elaine! I’m about to enter college, specifically in the middle of Nowhere of Pennsylvania. I’m also unemployed.

Ben
We are the…

Ben + Elaine
[Out of sync] World’s Finest!

Ben
Uh…gotta work on that. We should rehearse next time.

Elaine
Yeah. Ahhaha!

Ben
Yeah. You shouldn’t come drunk either, that’s very unprofessional.

Elaine
Oh my gosh.

[WORLD’S FINEST, LADIES AND GENTLEMEN.]

Ben
Welcome to our first episode! This is a video podcast about nerd culture through a person of color’s perspective. And today’s theme is BEGINNINGS!

And today’s episode is also powered by THE BAND WITH NO NAME Film Company.

Let’s jump into the Headlines: Comic Con 2015 just happened in San Diego recently, and a lot of exciting trailers—

First, we got out two favorite people of all time, fictional or not—Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice. So what’d ya think? What’re you thoughts? Initial reactions?

Elaine
Well okay, so we have…a lot of reservations about going into this movie, because we both dislike Zack Snyder as a director.

I didn’t like the suit that he wore when he came out first. And I didn’t like the fact that he’s being portrayed as more of like a villain or like more of a bad guy. And making him, you know, try to be like some sort of God who’s trying to take over.

Ben
Like initially, just watching this, I did get…a little fanboy-ish. There were some moments where—especially where Superman just jumps on top of the Batmobile, rips off the doors, and then they both have this epic stare down at the end.

That was…That was nuts! That was literally the comic panels coming to life. But I can see the—Like the problematic elements of this trailer in that: There’s just so much going on!

And…Wonder Woman comes out of no where. I understand that it was announced a long time ago, so it’s not a surprise. But like, you know, what’s her role going to be and how is she going to be the catalyst to the action? Is she going to be a sideline character? Is she going to have a purpose in this movie what so ever? Cause Wonder Woman is a great character and she deserves her standalone movie.

Elaine
Right when I heard her being announced as one of the characters in the movie…I got really really angry! A lot of people got angry at the model for playing her—for like being chosen to play Wonder Woman and—

Ben
Yeah Gadot. /s

Elaine
Yeah, I mean [Gadot’s] fine. I watched the Fast and Furious movies with her and she’s—She’s pretty okay. And she’s really trying hard to—She’s trying her best to pull off Wonder Woman, and I’m happy for that. And like she’s Israeli. So she has a nice, you know, like tint of color. Um, bringing some color to that mayo sausage fest.

But [Wonder Woman’s] such a strong character. And having her just like randomly tossed in there, in the middle of the guys’ fight is like: Come on! She’s better than that! She deserves better!

Ben
Yeah, it’s just like…they conceptualized this idea of a Batman versus Superman movie at the beginning stages. And they’re like, “Okay, we want to do a Batman-Superman movie for sure. Now what else can we do to further expand this universe.”

Because shared universe is the thing. It’s all the rage. That just means throwing in Cyborg, throwing in Aquaman, throwing Wonder Woman—You know, why not just make it a Justice League movie? Why do we have to have Batman versus Superman faceoff?

I feel like it’s so juvenile…to be like, “Hey, I bet—I bet you Batman can beat up Superman in a fist fight!” But it just seems like after everything that Christopher Nolan has established with his you know—

[The Batman Trilogy’s] serious in tone but—Yes, right here, boom. [Gesturing to the Batman Trilogy poster] Chris, he’s a beautiful man. But uh, I feel like [Batman V Superman] is trying to capture that tone, but understanding why that tone was there in the first place…And so there are lots of concerns—and like you said, the one variable that maintains our skepticism ‘til now is Mr. Zack Snyder.

Elaine
Because he headed the Man of Steel, which was a decent movie up until like the part—part where Russell Crowe came in.

Ben
[Remembering Crowe’s acting] Ahhaha!

Elaine
But no, up until that point, it was great storytelling. Like they captured a lot of the really deep emotions and turmoil that Superman would face in a time like this—Where there’s a lot of doubt in the government and just like the political atmosphere…

And then [Man of Steel] just became awkwardly, mindless violence with Zod. Like he’s crashing into towns with no regard to who’s having a building fall on them.

Ben
Yeah, it just all feels so convoluted, and it just—I just imagine Zack Snyder…putting this movie together in his bathtub with action figures going, “Phew! Phew! Phew!”

With that sense of juvenilism and not like…you know…not…having care for these characters that have been around for so long, and the mythos and the pathos of Batman and Superman.

Elaine
I’m a die-hard Superman fan, because of like his mythos and the—his story of being basically the “ultimate immigrant.”

Ben
Yeah.

Elaine
You know he’s not from this planet at all, and yes he can pass for white, but his origin makes him like awkwardly just—not fitting in anywhere.

Ben
Superman is a symbol of hope. He’s a bright character. And he should be juxtaposed and be contrasted to Batman. But it just seems like it’s two of the same guys in different suits—it’s different colored suits in this movie. So that’s why…

I mean as excited as I want to get, and I love these characters and I want them to do well, because I don’t want Marvel just to have a monopoly on the superhero, you know, genre.

I think when you adapt…a comic book into a film, obviously it’s different mediums and nothing’s going to translate completely. But the thing is, you have to capture the essence. And that’s what Marvel is doing so—it’s doing with flying colors right now. They’re capturing the correct essence of these characters.

And you know, you don’t have to do everything word for word obviously. But like…uh, Batman! Understandably brooding. His parents were murdered in cold blood in front of him, so he is the brooding character.

But Superman’s—There’s nothing about him where I feel like he should be a downer of a character. Like, sure he lost his planet and came over here in a rocket ship…

Ben + Elaine
but he was—

Elaine
He was young!

Ben
Yeah!

Elaine
Like, he wouldn’t completely understand the repercussions of that until he was maybe past his teenage years. [Sorry Elaine was under estimating him.]

Ben
Yeah.

Elaine
Because, I mean, we’re Vietnamese American. And our families, you know, had to escape Vietnam after the World—the Vietnam War.

Our families had to escape a war, and their country was war-torn for the longest time. And they’re still like recently adapting to the changing culture of technology.

But I don’t think I really appreciated what they did until, like in the past 2-3 years.

Ben
Yeah.

Elaine
So, I mean, the fact that [Superman’s] whole planet died, but he was raised as an adopted Earth kid forever and he didn’t even know he was adopted until very very late in his [developmental] years. I mean, come on.

Ben
You’re totally right. I like the point that you bring up about the immigrants from Vietnam and the boat people. Um yeah, during that time I feel like—all though there were times of struggle and times of xenophobia, especially coming to this country and being the only Asian faces of where they were…

Like my folks were…They went to Missouri as like—There’s no Vietnamese people there. But I think they were fully formed. They know they were, they know what they wanted, and they just worked hard to get what they wanted.

And something in the case of Bruce Wayne, it happened to him at a very young age and he was conscious of it. And it’s that image that plays over and over again, and you see it in every movie. They show it, whether it’s in a flashback or the actual origin, of him and his parents and their murder so…That would affect him psychologically.

But as for Superman, he understands his heritage, he understands where he comes from, and he honors that by doing good. For people and for future generations.

So that’s what Superman means for me, at least. That symbol that he stands for.

Elaine
And that’s why I call him the “ultimate immigrant.”

Ben
Yeah.

Elaine
Because he’s an immigrant as much as we are. And that’s, I think, one of the reasons why he’s such an amazing figure in like fiction! Because he transcends those values in a way—or like he’s like a shining beacon of those values.

Maybe that’s why he’s like a Jesus-like figure..in many of the like comic books. And I’m not saying you should make him that way on film, but capturing the essence of like him just like really understanding his heritage and trying to come to terms with it—

You can do that without him being extremely broody.

Ben
Yeah!

Elaine
And then, for some reason, have him wreck any—everything in his path.

Ben
Ahhaha. But um…Yeah, that’s Batman Versus Superman everybody!

Elaine
Yeah, that’s Zack Snyder. And this is just the trailer!

Like we’re going in…I’m gonna—If I’m gonna watch this, which I am, I’m going to hate it by being an informed hater!

Ben
Yeah. Ahhaha.

Elaine
Like—

Ben
See that’s the thing. We’re fans at the end of the day as much as we’re like dogging on the movie.

We’re gonna watch the movie. We’ll be first in line.

Elaine
Yeah!

Ben
Like I mean, check out our shirts.

Elaine
Yeah! Because I love DC. I grew up on DC Comics, more so than I did Marvel, because Superman—like, I just resonated with him so well so…

I’m still going to like watch it, but I know I’m going to hate it.

Ben
Ahhaha! I think the thing for me is too—I’m not like rooting for [Batman and Superman] to fail. I want them to succeed so bad.

Like, we deserve multitudes of these, uh, different comic book universes. We as fans—You know, this is the golden age of comic books, and it’s time that we have a variation.

TO BE CONTINUE…


Coming up—The Pilot is split into 4 parts, or rather “episodes,” which will be uploaded soon! I will also transcribe those after they are uploaded!

Episode 2: Suicide Squad
Episode 3: Bruh!
Episode 4: Beginnings

E’s Commentary
My goodness I had no idea what I was doing the entire time we were filming. I basically embodied “fake it ‘til you make it” that day. I’m not sure if anyone can tell, but I was extremely nervous and had difficulty talking to string words together some of the time. I am not extremely satisfied about how I presented some points, but I’m glad Ben was there to offer more coherent insight. However, I’m still happy that all the segments will be published. But if everyone supports us, I promise I will improve as we continue making these video podcasts for you!

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