Movie Review: Superman Unbound
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Superman Unbound
Blu-ray Multipack | DVD | Instant Video
Directed by James Tucker
Starring Matt Bomer, Stana Katic, Molly C. Quinn, John Noble
Release Date: May 7, 2013

First and foremost, I’m not a huge Superman fan. I prefer my heroes a bit more…mortal, you know? That said, I am sometimes forced to reassess a character based on who is writing the storyline, script, what have you. Animated superhero shows have a certain appeal to me, regardless of the main characters. Watching the Super Friends on Saturday morning is probably one of my favorite childhood memories and I find any excuse to try to relive that excitement. And the chance to watch and discuss Superman Unbound was way too cool to pass up. Now on to the review…

DC Entertainment does love to change up the voice actors quite a bit, don’t they? This incarnation of the Man of Steel is voiced by none other than White Collar star Matt Bomer. This became a very distracting issue for me, just to let you know. I kept envisioning Big Blue as an art thief in New York and not the Kryptonian hero of Metropolis. But maybe that’s just me.

This story is more of a myriad of tales. The main theme involves the first meeting of Supes and Brainiac, though there is a twist with Supergirl having some prior history with this alien humanoid who seems focused on absorbing all the knowledge of the universe one planet at a time. Having taken the city of Kandor from the planet Krypton shortly before its destruction, Brainiac holds it in miniature form on board his ship (along with countless other cities from planets he destroyed). Knowing his modus operandi, Superman attempts to intercept and stop this from happening to Earth. But plans don’t always go as they should…

The other plotlines involve the characters more personally. We are given a deeper look into the lives of Lois Lane and Clark Kent/Kal-El. Their relationship is hidden from the world due to the fear that Superman has of Lois being put into harm’s way because of him. That said, this version of Lois Lane (voiced by Stana Katic) is a lot tougher than we are used to in most stories. Unafraid and more than willing to flirt with danger, she charges head first in every situation. This almost backfires when dealing with Kara Zor-El (Supergirl) as she forgets that this heroine is still quite young and very traumatized by her sudden relocation to Earth. But, I have to say, this was my favorite part of the movie. We see an entirely different side of Supergirl. We are shown a vulnerable teenager who came into her powers without a learning curve.

This is something I have wanted from DC for a long time. Humanizing the characters enables the reader/viewer to empathize with the hero and really bond with them. Too long has this company resisted this when it comes to the Superman animated franchise. We usually just see Superman save the day with limited emotion or effort, but watching the way they had Clark interact with Lois and Kara was awesome. The banter was even more uncharacteristic, but definitely nice to see. I want to see some more of that, please. I especially enjoyed the little bit of jealousy we see from him early in the movie. But I won’t spoil it for you, I promise.

Overall Superman Unbound was good, though I felt like the Brainiac attacking the Earth plot was kind of taking a back seat to everything else that was going on in the film. Molly C. Quinn flat steals the show, I must say. Her voice really helped breathe life into Kara…it was a cut above the rest. Not that I don’t like Bomer, but he didn’t really sound like Superman to me. I enjoyed the quips and I have no doubt he gave it his all, I just couldn’t make the connection. As for John Noble, I didn’t really recognize the Fringe actor by his voice. Maybe it was the audio manipulation to make him sound more bio-mechanical? I don’t know…just another synaptic miss on my part, I suppose. I’m sure true Superman fans will disagree with a lot of this, but that’s okay…this is my review, my perception. I know I’ll buy the Blu-ray, just like always. I do have some obvious OCDs, after all. As long as I don’t anger Superman, it’ll be okay. That is how he defeated Brainiac, after all…exploiting his obsessive and compulsive habits. Curious? Then go watch the movie, duh.

Up, up, and away.

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  1. I disagree. Bomer is amazing as Superman. His voice is different. Noble is amazing,too. Molly’vois is bad, I don’t liked.

    Comment by Francesca Facchinetti — May 20, 2013 @ 6:20 pm

  2. Sorry you didn’t like it, but I stick by my comments. Thanks for reading, though!

    Comment by Waerloga69 — May 20, 2013 @ 8:36 pm

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