HBO has always made amazing documentaries, whether for broadcast TV or its streaming service, Max. So there’s every reason to be excited about Superpowered: The DC Story even before I tell you that Academy Award-nominated filmmaker Leslie Iwerks and Emmy-nominated filmmaker Mark Catalena co-directed the three-part series, which will explore the comics publisher through its 85+ years of history with a truly stunning array of comics writers, artists, and luminaries, as well as its live-action stars, directors, and producers from throughout DC’s long history in pop culture.
First, check out the trailer:
It’s a bit bombastic and portentous, but you can’t argue with the breadth of interviewees, which includes Melissa Benoist, Greg Berlanti, Tim Burton, Mike Carlin, Lynda Carter, Henry Cavill, Kaley Cuoco, Gal Gadot, James Gunn, Patty Jenkins, Dwayne Johnson, Michael Keaton, Regina King, Zoë Kravitz, Jim Lee, Zachary Levi, Damon Lindelof, Tom Mankiewicz, Jason Momoa, Christopher Nolan, Robert Pattinson, Christopher Reeve, John Ridley, Margot Robbie, Bruce Timm, Michael E. Uslan. Mark Waid, and more. That’s a hell of a line-up right there.
If you want more of a preview, here are the summaries for the three episodes:
- Episode 1: “The Hero’s Journey”For over 85 years, DC has been home to a universe of iconic characters and unparalleled storytelling, but its origins began with the brilliant minds who created a Super Hero trinity: Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman. From survival to revival, DC navigates the birth of the sidekick, parental concerns after WWII, and a corporate takeover amid a struggle to stay current.
- Episode 2: “Coming of Age”During a period of declining comic book sales, a bold move resets DC’s entire universe, as the company decides to also take a gamble on a new Superman movie. While rivals begin to address pressing social issues, a determined DC introduces their first Black Super Hero and breaks story boundaries under their new imprint, Vertigo Comics, with the hopes of maturing comic books into an everlasting adult art form.
- Episode 3: “A Better Tomorrow”Tired of being left out of the conversation, a group of diverse creators form Milestone Media to give voice to marginalised characters and stories born out of their own experiences. After more than eight decades of history, DC visionaries look toward a future that is representative of all in their ever-expanding universe.
I won’t lie; it’s super-cool that one of the documentary’s three episodes will deal with DC’s history with and current drive for diversity and representation, helping showcase how important it is to the comics industry and all the entertainment that spawns out of it. Plus, I’m eager to hear anything more about Damon Lindelof’s beyond-excellent Watchmen TV series.
Superpowerd: The DC Story premieres July 20.