While DC has announced ambitious plans to try and catch up with Marvel on the big screen, I continue to find their TV lineup far more entertaining. The CW has expanded the Arrow-verse with The Flash, NBC’s just-debuted Constantine is already generating rumors of potential spinoffs, and both TNT and CBS have DC-based projects in the works (Titans and Supergirl, respectively). And then there’s Fox’s Gotham, a bizarre experiment that has so far yielded decidedly mixed results. But what else should we have expected from a Batman show without Batman? Now it seems we might be getting another prequel-ish series from DC, one that will take us back to one of the most famous fictional planets of all time: Krypton.
Bleeding Cool reports that Man of Steel writer/producer David Goyer, who is one or the architects of DC’s burgeoning movie universe along with director Zack Snyder, is developing a TV series called, simply, Krypton. That’s pretty much the only info they’ve got at this point — there is no mention of where the show might eventually air, or even what the show will be about. Of course, with a name like Krypton, it’s not that hard to hazard a guess. Since Kal-El didn’t exactly spend a whole lot of time on his homeworld, and given that it went kaboom as it made its exit, Krypton would presumably be about Jor-El and Lara before Kal came along, or perhaps Zod and his camp, or maybe even Braniac. Honestly, it could be about anything Krypton-related, but I have to imagine it would hang its narrative hat on characters we’ve actually heard about, and that list of Kryptonians is pretty damn short, especially if you’re not a hardcore comics fan.
The good news is, it would likely be able to preview those characters’ eventual fates in a more elegant, less on-the-nose way than Gotham’s clumsy “Look, she’s going to be Poison Ivy someday so she’s watering a plant!” nonsense. I quite like the core duo of Gordon and Bullock on Gotham, and Robin Lord Taylor’s performance as the eventual Penguin has been a lot of fun. But I could not care less about Edward “The Riddler” Nygma’s days as a forensics expert for the Gotham PD. I might be more interested, however, in learning more about Jor-El, Lara, Zod, and the culture of Krypton in general.
Speaking of which, it’ll be interesting to see just what version of Krypton we’ll be getting. We’ve seen the sterile, crystalline serenity of the Richard Donner films (and Bryan Singer’s Superman Returns). Man of Steel gave us a violent Krypton full of violence and epic vistas. And of course we’ve seen a number of different interpretations in the comics themselves. Could this Krypton TV series tie into the one established in Man of Steel? If so, Jor-El would almost certainly have to be recast, as I can’t imagine Russell Crowe would be keen to sign on for a long-time series commitment. It also seems unlikely as DC Chief Creative Officer Geoff Johns has made clear that the various DC shows don’t exist in any sort of shared continuity, outside of the possibility of a “multiverse” that might be explored some ways down the road. Then again, Arrow and The Flash are carving out their own little pocket universe, so it’s not entirely impossible that we could see a Krypton series tied directly to the films.
All told, I can’t say I’m enormously excited by the idea of a Krypton series, especially when there are plenty of other, more interesting corners of the DC universe to be explored. Hell, if we want a sci-fi DC series, somebody greenlight Legion of Super-Heroes already.