Monday, September 24, 2012


I've stated this in the past - I can't stand it when TV writers feel the need to splain a pop culture reference in their dialogue. If it needed to be splained away, then it wasn't worth using.

But there's another reason I detest such splainins - if left on their own, we could make the assumption that the subject of that pop culture reference shares the same world as the show which cited it.

Here's a good recent example, from 'Alphas':

When Skylar saw how upset and preoccupied Nina was, she asked: "Trouble in the Justice League?"

The remark was a comment on Nina's team-mates having super-powers by comparing them to the DC comic book super-hero team (Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, the Flash, Aquaman, etc.)

There was no mention of comic books or cartoons, so we can make the assumption that the Justice League exists in Earth Prime-Time. (We know it exists in 'The West Wing' TV dimension, thanks to 'Smallville'.)

  • Superman is dead in Earth Prime-Time.
  • Batman is probably retired and it's beginning to look more and more that someone else, perhaps even Bruce Wayne's son, has donned the cowl and assumed the identity of the Dark Knight.
  • Being nearly immortal, Wonder Woman appears to have withdrawn from the outside world and retired to the "Paradise Island" of Themyscira.
  • The Flash could still be active, or it could be that he is dead, perhaps killed by the very chemical combination that first gave him his powers.
  • As for Aquaman, his pilot may not have been picked up, but it was one of the lucky ones to be broadcast. (Even though it was on Canadian TV, it still counts - putting the world in Toobworld.)
The new Green Arrow (NOT from the world of 'Smallville'!) is just a baby in comparison to the older crew.

The actual appearance of the Justice League in Earth Prime-Time, as opposed to its incarnation in the 'West Wing'/'Smallville' TV dimension, would cause some massive Zonks because of the fates and ages of those original portrayals. First off, more than likely all of the roles would be recast so some heavy splainin would be needed.
  • New Superman? An escapee from the Bottled City of Kandor or the Phantom Zone determined to carry on the tradition? Mon-El?
  • New Batman? Again, perhaps Bruce Wayne's son.....
  • New Wonder Woman? Daughter of Diana Prince?
  • New Aquaman? A citizen of Atlantis who decided to co-opt the character's name from Vincent Chase's movie (as seen in 'Entourage'?
It would take a lot of logistical limbo moves, but it could be pozz'ble, just pozz'ble, that the Justice League could exist in the main Toobworld.

If I had my druthers, I'd cast the Justice League with all new members never seen in Earth Prime-Time:
  • Power Girl
  • Green Lantern
  • Elongated Man
  • Zatarra
  • Black Canary
  • Atom
Any other suggestions?

At any rate, even if they never show up, thanks to Skylar's comment we can claim that they still exist in Toobworld.......



Robert Wronski said...

You don't count Legend of the SuperHeroes to be part of Toobworld?

Toby O'B said...

I have it here on DVD, (Probably a bootleg? Can't remember.) so I really should check it out. But I thought of it while writing and I was sure that nothing about it contradicted what I suggested. Maybe I'll go check Wikipedia for the details in the meantime.

Okay - checked it out. The monkey wrench is caused by Haase as The Flash. I accept the TV series "The Flash" as the official version. And the appearances by Ghetto Man, Scarlet Tornado, and Ed McMahon make this too jokey even by the camp standards of later "Batman" episodes.

I think this probably belongs in either Skitlandia or one of the Borderlands connecting a TV dimension to the Tooniverse.

Although I'm tempted by the appearances of Atom, Black Canary, Green Lantern even Solomon Grundy, I'd hate to waste their inclusion on these two specials just in case new incarnations came along (that don't tie in to "Smallville".)

Toby O'B said...

Also it's too tempting to resist to now write up an article about how Scarlet Tornado in one dimension is Admiral Hargrade in the main Toobworld!

Robert Wronski said...

Found your answer. You can disregard my asking the same thing in a Facebook message.