A legend has existed for years and years and years, one spoken of in jeering conversations and some might have thought of as urban myth.
It is the Justice League of America 1997 television pilot!
“Loosely” based on the late 1980’s Bwahahaha League of the time, where the emphasis was on character and humour, this pilot was never picked up. With some very good reasons.
The JLA is already around saving the world as the show opens. We have Flash, Atom, Green Lantern Guy Gardener, Fire, and occasional appearances by Martian Manhunter. The villain is an evil weather scientist who plans to extort money or cause disasters. Ice finds out, gains powers, and helps save the world. Along the way we get generous helpings of the League’s personal lives, with all sorts of hilarity and angst.
While much of this show is sad sad sad, I cannot fault the acting at all. All the actors are really trying hard to make their characters work. And frankly I do buy them as the JLA. Interspersed about the story is the heroes and heroines being interviewed by themselves and in groupings, by some interviewer. Here the acting even more shines through. They are the unsung winners almost saving this wreck.
But Holy Moley, this thing is killed by the massive chessiness! The costumes are awful, okay beyond awful and more gut wrenching, and the specials effects are outstandingly terrible. Plus, they have to wrap Martian Manhunter in a cape Batman style, all to hide the fact that the actor, David Ogden Stiers who played Winchester on M.A.S.H., has lots of extra girth to put it mildly. Also, to say that most of the characters are out of character and some (cough cough Guy Gardner) come across slightly ridiculous and others (cough cough Flash) come across as massively ridiculous is an understatement.
We can think the Hellmouth that this weird little entry did not go forward, because I do think it would have set our Geek genre back more then that nasty Green Lantern movie. And that cannot be allowed.
…is currently reading The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith, aka J.K. Rowling.