DC Studios co-head James Gunn previously mentioned how he was already mapping out his DCU geography and realizing it to the same degree as Game of Thrones’ Westeros. Unlike Marvel, which mostly takes place in real-world locations, DC’s main locales are totally fictional cities, each with its own flavor. Gunn mentioned the obvious examples, like Metropolis and Gotham, but also Green Arrow’s Star City and Nightwing’s Bludhaven. But DC Comics has a metric ton of other cool fictional cities, ones we’d love to see on the big (and small) screens. Here are the fictional DC Comics cities that we’d love to see in the DCU.
Gateway City (First Appearance – Wonder Woman #101 (1995))
Superman famously has Metropolis. Batman has Gotham. And so on and so on. But the third member of the DC Trinity, Wonder Woman, didn’t get a cool fictional city of her own till the ‘90s. Sure, she had Themyscira, but she didn’t hang her lasso there Monday through Friday. Originally, she lived in Washington, D.C., and then post-Crisis reboot, in Boston. Yes, somehow DC Comics America has room for all these fictional cities and the real ones. It’s crowded. But in 1995, John Byrne moved Diana Prince to the fictional Gateway City. Intended as a stand-in for San Francisco, it was there Diana worked at an ancient history museum. Later, heroes like the Spectre and Mister Terrific would operate out of Gateway. When Diana finally appears, whoever she may be, we’d love to see her live in Gateway.
Opal City (First Appearance – Starman #0 (1994))
Opal City didn’t appear until the 1994 series Starman, written by James Robinson and illustrated by Tony Harris. It was the home of the Justice Society’s Starman of World War II, Ted Knight. He protected the city with the use of his stellar-powered cosmic rod. As he got older, he passed on his heroic mantle to his son David. But when he died, his other son, a slacker type named Jack, had to pick up the legacy. Opal was a city with much history in Starman, and home to supernatural beings like the immortal Shade. The history of Opal was a huge springboard for stories in this series. Artist Tony Harris designed Opal within an inch of its life, giving every building an Art déco flair. This is one of the most well-planned fictional cities in the DC universe, and it deserves to appear on screen at some point.
Gorilla City (First Appearance – The Flash #106 (1959))
You know what’s cooler than a talking gorilla? A whole city full of talking gorillas. Gorilla City, found in a secret location in the jungles of Equatorial Africa, is home to a highly advanced race of gorillas who were given artificially enhanced intelligence centuries ago. These apes were wise and benevolent. Their sovereign King Solovar ruled them. But one of their own, a gorilla named Grodd, went rogue. He eventually became a primary Flash villain. Like Atlantis and Themyscira, Gorilla City is one of the cooler high-tech hidden megalopolis from the comics. We saw a version of it in the Flash TV show, but we want something a little more like the comics. Basically, we want apes living in a Jetsons world. We believe James Gunn can deliver that.
Keystone and Central Cities (First Appearance – Flash Comics #1 (1940)Showcase #4 (1956))
We’ve already seen Central City, home of the second Flash Barry Allen, in both The Flash movies and TV shows. But in the comics, it is one of two twin cities in the Midwest along with Keystone City. Central City was supposed to be in Missouri with Keystone in Kansas. Both towns have a long history with speedster heroes. Keystone was home to the original Flash, Jay Garrick, during the 1940s and 1950s. Later, Barry Allen made its sister city Central his home. Fun fact: Both cities existed on different Earths, but when Earth-One and Earth-Two merged into one after Crisis on Infinite Earths, they became adjacent to each other. The third Flash, Wally West, then became the protector of both. Seeing twin cities with one hero protector would be a fun approach for the DCU.
Dakota City (First Appearance – Hardware #1 (1993))
The Milestone Comics heroes arrived in the early ‘90s to add some much-needed African-American representation to DC’s heroic ranks. And like any good DC heroes, they reside in their own fictional American city. Much like Metropolis is a fictional version of New York City, they designed Dakota to be a fictional variation of Detroit, Michigan. It’s home to heroes like Static, Icon, Hardware, the Blood Syndicate, and more. Originally, the Milestone heroes were part of their own separate continuity, but it then merged into the mainline DC Earth in 2008. If we ever see the Milestone heroes come to life, like in the long-rumored Static Shock live-action project, then Dakota is a must.
Coast City (First Appearance – Showcase #22 (1959))
In many ways, Coast City has had the wildest publishing history of any DC Comics city. DC introduced it as a stand-in for a Southern California city like L.A. or San Diego in the early ‘60s Green Lantern comics. This was at the height of the period when California was the number one location for the aviation industry. And since Green Lantern Hal Jordan was a test pilot, it made sense to have Coast City as his home base. Hal Jordan worked out of Coast City for years, until the Reign of the Superman story in the ‘90s, when the alien Mongul destroyed it, killing millions. Later, they rebuilt the city in record time, because comics. Still, it’s a fun idealized version of mid-century California, and we’d love to see it on screen.