Next year’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is as hotly anticipated a movie as it gets, and a large part of the reason why is because Batman and Superman, two characters that became global sensations within a year of their creations, have never shared a screen together (in live-action) in seventy-five years. When you think about, it really does seem crazy that it’s taken this long for it to happen. But then, these two didn’t even meet in the pages of DC Comics till they’d been around for some twelve years or more, which seems equally nutso.
But what it if it hadn’t taken so long? What if comics’ biggest and most iconic heroes had met in their heyday of the 1940s? What would that look like? Well, for starters, it would look a hell of a lot cheaper. Despite selling millions of copies per issue in the 1940s (yes millions, comic books sold that much once kids), their live-action incarnations were strictly on the low budget side.
Neither character got full-length feature films back in the day, but instead were the subject of Saturday matinee serials, the equivalent of today’s Saturday morning cartoons. When actor Kirk Alyn as Superman was shown leaping tall buildings in a single bound, he just turned into an animated cartoon. And Batman and Robin had it even worse; their Batmobile was barely a Batmobile, it was just some old car someone found on the studio lot. And it wasn’t even black!
Now the fine folks at Vulture, via their video artists Diane Bullock and Mike Schuster, have taken bits and pieces of the old ’40s serials featuring the world’s finest heroes and created this brilliant little trailer for Batman v Superman, as if it happened in 1949. And watching it actually makes me wish this movie had been real. Sadly, Wonder Woman doesn’t appear in this trailer, but since the character didn’t have a serial of her own like Supes and Bats, or other heroes like Captain America and Shazam, that’s understandable. You can only work with what you’ve got.
You can watch the 1949 remix trailer for Batman v Superman above, and let us know what you think of all the old fashioned highjinks in the comments below.