As I continue my trial period for DC Universe, I noticed that they had the Aquaman pilot pseudo-spinoff from Smallville available to watch on there. And I also realized that even though it wasn’t a double length pilot movie, it does pass the 40+ minutes for my feature length requirement. And considering I recently watched the new Aquaman, I figured that I’d give it a shot. I was a fan of Smallville and watched it regularly through the first 7 or 8 seasons before dropping off just before the end. I remember hearing about this pilot when it was in the works but I never looked it up until just now. It has a surprisingly good cast in some of the minor roles and it also has someone who seems to be superhero pilot bad luck as Adrianne Palicki was in this failed pilot, the Wonder Woman failed pilot, and the Marvel’s Most Wanted Mockingbird failed pilot spinoff of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. As far as the actual Aquaman pilot goes, it’s a fairly standard origin setup for a monster-of-the-week first season. It doesn’t really do anything special or interesting. It’s just the same old format with an underwater theme to it.
The Greatest American Heroine 1986
I often go back and forth on what I decide to include on my site as to what is a superhero movie and what isn’t. The question on this one is whether or not it should be considered a movie or an episode of television. It’s technically the final episode of the TV series The Greatest American Hero which ran for three seasons, but it didn’t air in its original run, instead it was only included later when it went into syndication and on later DVD releases. But it also did get its own separate DVD release under its own title. I was aware of the concept of the Greatest American Hero, but I had never actually seen any episodes before now. It felt a little on the campy side and I could tell that I was missing some things even though they included some recaps.
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Justice League of America 1997
While I’ve delved through the entire depths of the Marvel film catalogue including their awful TV movie roots, I have yet to do the same for DC. I have seen nearly all of their films, but there are a handful of early animated movies from the 90’s and a couple TV movies including this one that was initially intended to be the pilot of a new TV series coming hot off the heels of Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman. But they also took a page out of the popularity of MTV’s the Real World which would have been on season 4 or 5 when this went into production and also would be near the height of the show’s popularity. So this show combines the superheroics with the daily life of the heroes alongside several “confessional” segments where the heroes talk directly to the TV audience. It’s bizarre how this managed to even make it to the pilot movie stage, the costumes and effects were lackluster, the characters were unlikable and barely resembled their comic book counterparts, and overall it feels roughly five years behind even 1997.
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