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November 28, 2010

Stay Tooned Sundays: Superman/Shazam! The Return of Black Adam

Hey there boys and girls, happy Sunday. With it being Sunday, it’s time to take a look at some of the best in comic book television and animation. This week we will be checking out an anthology of some DC animated shorts that were just collected together on DVD. Among the shorts collected are DC Showcase: Jonah Hex, Green Arrow, and The Spectre, with a brand new extra extended animated short Superman/Shazam! The Return of Black Adam. So without further ado, let’s get into it, shall we?

Title: DC Showcase: Superman/Shazam! The return of Black Adam
Written by: Michael Jelenic
Director: Joaquim Dos Santos
Company: Warner Bros. Animation
Distributed by: Warner Home Video
US Release Date: November 9, 2010
Length: 22 min.
MPAA: Rated PG-13

The first extended short is a retelling of the origin of Captain Marvel, the “World’s Mightiest Mortal.” Young Billy Batson has not had an easy life, but through all the rough times he has kept an upbeat attitude and positive outlook on life. Billy meets with a reporter, Clark Kent, who is interested in doing a feature on Billy and his daily life. Before they get a chance to start, the duo are attacked by the mysterious Black Adam. As Superman (Clark Kent’s alter ego, as if I had to tell you that) and Black Adam have a massive showdown, Billy uncovers his true destiny when he happens upon the wizard Shazam. The wizard tells Billy about Black Adam’s origin and grants him the power of the Gods as Captain Marvel. Billy then rejoins Superman and together they attempt to defeat Black Adam.

With great animation and a fun story, this short is not to be missed by Shazam fans. I found the story to be a great spin on Captain Marvel’s origin, and I particularly like the portrayal of Billy Batson and his everyday life. This animated flick has the perfect mix of action and heart. It stars the amazing voice talents of  James Garner, George Newbern, Jerry O’Connell, and Arnold Vosloo. If you are looking for a fun short adventure, you should definitely check this one out.

Title: DC Showcase: Jonah Hex
Written by: Justin Gray (Original Story), Joe R. Lansdale (screenplay)
Director: Joaquim Dos Santos
Company: Warner Bros. Animation
Distributed by: Warner Home Video
US Release Date: July 27, 2010
Length: 12 min.
MPAA: Rated PG-13

The next short, DC Showcase: Jonah Hex was first released as a bonus feature with Batman Under The Red Hood. This features the voice talents of Thomas Jane, Linda Hamilton, Michael Rooker, and Michelle Trachtenberg. Jonah shows up to a saloon to investigate a brothel with a deadly secret. It would appear that the men who “visit” with Madame Lorraine are never seen again. Once Jonah uncovers what  the wicked Madame is up to, it’s time for him to dish out some justice, like only he can. This is a beautifully animated short that is both fun and exciting. The story is everything you want from a great western, with a side of superhero added to the mix.

Title: DC Showcase: Green Arrow
Written by: Greg Weisman
Director: Joaquim Dos Santos
Company: Warner Bros. Animation
Distributed by: Warner Home Video
US Release Date: September 28, 2010
Length: 11 min.
MPAA: Rated PG-13

The Emerald Archer’s short was originally released as part of the Superman/Batman: Apocalypse DVD set. The movie features Neal McDonough as Green Arrow and Malcolm McDowell as Merlyn the Magnificent. When Ollie goes to the airport to pick up Black Canary, he ends up thwarting an assassination attempt on a young princess. Ollie then spends the rest of the adventure trying to keep the girl safe while simultaneously defeating Merlyn and Count Vertigo. Black Canary also shows up to lend a hand or voice, as the case may be. This short like the others has some awesome animation. I really enjoyed the rapport between Green Arrow and Princess Perdita, and their relationship really pays off in the final scene between Canary and Oliver.

Title: DC Showcase: The Spectre
Written by: Steve Niles
Director: Joaquim Dos Santos
Company: Warner Bros. Animation
Distributed by: Warner Home Video
US Release Date: April 23, 2010
Length: 12 min.
MPAA: Rated PG-13

Similar to the Jonah Hex story above, this short is about the Spectre serving up some vengeance, nice and cold. The adventure begins when a famous film maker is assassinated. Jim Corrigan is one of the police officers that is called in to investigate the death. It’s soon revealed that the daughter of the slain man happens to be an old friend of Corrigan’s. As he looks into leads from his investigation and gets closer to the truth, he sets out to make sure that all the guilty parties are dealt their due vengeance. This tale is a classic who-done-it with a supernatural twist and a surprise ending. With the voice talents of the amazing Gary Cole and Alyssa Milano, this is also one short you won’t want to miss. The animation is hauntingly beautiful and the story holds nothing back in showing the Spectre evening the score with the murderers in question. This movie was first released as part of the Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths DVD pack, but like all the others, can now be found as part of this collection with added, never before seen footage. If you like sweet animation and great short stories, then this set is definitely for you.

Nick Zamora
nickz@comicattack.net

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4 Comments


  1. Kristin

    ….I kind of want this. How much is it?
    Maybe I can convince someone that my step-son needs this for Christmas, then I can watch it, too.



  2. lol #Kristin. It was only like nine bucks when it first came out, IDK how much it is now though.


  3. Billy

    Cool! I saw Dos Santos name up there. He was a staple on JL & JLU.



  4. Okay, I thought it was a collection of animated shorts maybe old ones repackaged with a great looking new cover. Now that I know it’s all new I just may pick this one up!



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