One theme that has defined DC Comics since the beginning of its journey is the importance of legacies. Original veteran characters pass on their mantle to the next generation of young heroes who carry on their ideals and responsibilities while adding their uniqueness. This is something that can be taken as a commentary for yesteryear’s creators as well, as legendary artists and writers through different generations have been creating and modifying characters and stories that will resonate with readers through different eras. Superman and Batman, being the flagship characters of DC, are no exception to this theme. In fact, the legacy characters of only these two heroes stand tall when great fictional characters are mentioned, and deserve their own chapter in the history of comic book literature. The upcoming DC Animated movie “Batman and Superman: Battle of Super Sons” revolves around children as well as the youngest of the legacies of these two heroes. The movie follows Superman’s son, Jon Kent, adjusting to his newfound powers and pairing up with Batman’s son, Damian Wayne, to save the world from a major threat. We will briefly discuss the characters, plot points, and how their team-up allows them to grow as characters.
Origins Of Jonathan Kent And Damian Wayne: Explained
“Battle of the Super Sons” showcases a number of DC characters, including appearances in Justice League and Teen Titans but primarily deals with the protagonist duo Jon Kent and Damian Wayne.
Jonathan Kent- One of the newest additions to the ‘Super Family,’ Jonathan Samuel Kent is the son of the post-crisis version of Superman, aka Clark Kent, and Lois Lane. Created by quintessential Superman writer-artist Dan Jurgens, Jon made his first appearance in the comics in “Convergence: Superman #2” in July 2015. Writer Dan Jurgens has described him as looking like Clark but with Lois’ spitfire attitude and inquisitiveness. Jon is also the most recent addition in comics to have taken the mantle of Superboy, and most recently, in Tom Taylor’s series, he takes the mantle of Superman. Unlike his father, who gained his set of powers in childhood, Jon didn’t develop them until he was 10 years old. Due to his human-Kryptonian mixed genetics, his powers are still developing. Reared up by the best parents in modern comics, Jon has the potential to become the ideal successor to his father. In live-action media, the character of Jonathan Kent appears in the DC series “Superman and Lois,” played by Jordan Elssas, and has appeared in a few animated series as well. In the movie, Jack Dylan Grazer, who also plays the role of Freddy Freeman in the DCEU, voices the character.
Damian Wayne: Damian is the son of Batman, aka Bruce Wayne, and Talia al Ghul, daughter of the Head of the Demon, Ra’s al Ghul. Created by Mike W. Barr, Damian made his first appearance in “Batman: Son of the Demon” in 1987 as an infant. Later, in Batman #655 (2006), writer Grant Morrison used him as a proper character. Damian had a pretty rough childhood as, in order to take advantage of his already near-perfect lineage, Talia experimented on him since he was an infant and genetically engineered him to age faster. During his initial years, Damian was trained by Ra’s the League of Assassins in the art of weaponry, numerous forms of martial arts, and almost every form of science and stealth to become the perfect killing machine. His experiences in his childhood and the wrong guidance made him precocious, arrogant, insensitive, and a spoiled brat. However, after he became the fifth character to don the Robin mantle and spent some time with the Bat-family, he tried to become a better person. Even after almost three decades-long existence in comics, Damian often falls victim to the writer’s laziness, who refuses to let the character grow, something that needs to be rectified soon. Being trained by the best of villainous and heroic forces, Damian has the potential to become the worthiest successor to the mantle of the Bat. Jack Griffo has voiced the character in the movie.
The movie itself is an adaptation of the criminally underrated comics series “SuperSons,” which follows Damian and Jon, starting off as frenemies and gradually working side by side to become best friends. Despite being polar opposites as characters, their funny adolescent banter, the chemistry they share, and Peter Tomasi’s writing, which treats kids the way they are and not miniature adults, makeup part of the brilliance of the series. The other greater half of the book’s success rests on artist Jorge Jimenez’s impeccably vibrant and dynamic art, which suits the characters and the stories perfectly.
What Happens In The ‘Batman And Superman: Battle Of The Super Sons’ Film?
“Battle of the Supersons” is the first DC Animated movie to be completely made using computer-generated imagery, like MCU’s “What if…?” series. While that makes action scenes translate on-screen efficiently, it also takes away the organic part in some scenes. Directed by Matt Peters ( Constantine Showcase, Injustice, JLD: Apokolips War ), the movie itself follows a pretty basic premise. On his 11th birthday, Jon Kent finds out about his heritage from his parents and is super-ecstatic to be a part of the world he had always admired as a fan. He meets with Damian Wayne, a snarly, cocky teen who isn’t ready to cut Jon some slack. Both of them have to work together to save their parents and the world from the control of Starro the Conqueror while discovering what it takes to be a hero.
While the plot keeps its approach simple and straightforward, several scenes and character treatments become highlights of the movie, positioning it among some of the better-animated ventures. The tone is cheerful, optimistic, and much like the character designs taken straight out of pages from “Super Sons.” The comic-book-inspired montage that begins after Kal-el’s arrival on earth is top-notch, to say the least. The first half of the movie develops the backstory of Jon Kent and probably takes a bit too much time with that, which results in Damian’s origin being reduced to a few dialogue mentions, unfortunately. The Voice cast does an amazing job of bringing the movie to life, especially the leads, who make a difference in characteristics very quickly. Laura Bailey’s voice as Lois Lane shines among side characters. The first Justice League villain in comics, Starro plays the role of an adversary in SuperSons’ first adventure too. While Alfred’s absence can irk some fans (as in comics, he gave the duo the name “Supersons”), Krypto’s appearance makes up for that. Even Bat-Cow makes an appearance in the Batcave, and fans surely want more of her in the future. A few scenes involving Starro’s mind control give face-hugger horror vibes. The fight scenes were well made too. The dynamic duo complements each other very well.
How ‘Battle of Super Sons’ Ended? What Does The End Mean?
The movie answers the question of whether being the biological children of two of the greatest heroes is what makes Damian and Jon part of the legacy of the characters. In comics, the concept of legacy was never limited to blood relations or even among known or related characters. It was always represented by the ideology or sense of common goal and responsibility characters shared among themselves. Similarly, Damian and John don’t get their title as heroes of the future on a platter; they earn it as they grow, even in a less than 90-minute movie.
Jon experiences what Superman had to go through in his young days, too; getting bullied, feeling like an outcast, being treated like a weirdo, and being unsure of himself. And just like Kent’s parents had comforted him during those tough times, Jon gains confidence after heeding the words of his parents. In the beginning, Jon doesn’t understand the importance of the job of reporting what his parents do. Appropriately, the advice Lois shares with him regarding a good reporter comes to his aid while he tries to save the day. A confused Jon is bewildered to think why his father fails to be there when he needs him the most, yet through his experience, he learns the weight of responsibility and the significance of sacrifice. Damian starts as a loner, picking on Jon and pretending to be more mature than his age. The hollowness Damian feels after having gone through a rough childhood doesn’t ease up from the fact that his father, Batman, is often emotionally incapable of sharing feelings. His only coping mechanism is to gain approval from his father or to prove he is better than most others, all the while hiding the fact that what he really needs is friends to be with. Therefore, being a highly skilled assassin doesn’t make him the best fit for Robin. It’s when he learns to trust and depend on Jon is when he learns the meaning of teamwork. Befittingly, he is the one who approaches Damian about a team-up, not the other way around. It’s the action that will make Jon Superman in the future. Similarly, Damian has earned his moniker Robin.
“Batman And Superman: Battle Of The Super Sons” is a 2022 animated feature film directed by Matt Peters.