ScreenCrush’s Comic Strip is a weekly roundup of the hottest superhero movie/TV news items. From Marvel to DC and points in between, if it pertains to costumed comic book heroes, we’re covering it here, bringing you our expert analysis. This week, sift through the weird state of DC movies and television, read the latest updates on Captain America: Civil War, and celebrate the greatest superhero TV spot of all time.

The Increasingly Complicated World of the DC Cinematic Universe

A lot of ink has spilled on the subject of how the upcoming DC superhero movie universe will co-exist with the DC superhero TV shows and a lot more is going to get spilled as the movies actually start to arrive in theaters. While we certainly won’t see Batman or Superman pop up on the CW, there is going to be just enough crossover to make everything really confusing for the uninitiated.

Let’s start with this interview with Ezra Miller, who make his debut as the Flash in the upcoming Justice League movies. The interview begins normally enough, with Miller geeking out about playing the fastest man alive and talking about his take on the character will explore the psychology of a man with such incredible super powers:

Barry Allen is the hero of the Silver Age who follows a lot of really interesting discoveries in physics. Where he comes from is where we figured out the Event Horizon was there, and he was the character who was created through our mythos machine of comic books to break that Event Horizon, so you could explore in fantasy ... I think that’s an interesting idea. And, what’s an interesting idea to me is, ‘What the f**k does that do to someone?

Eventually, the conversation turned to The CW’s The Flash and Miller has no problem whatsoever playing the same character as Grant Gustin. Like a few other key members of the Warner Bros. superhero movie team, he has a nerdy excuse ready – the multiverse:

I’m not avoiding it at all. I think it’s awesome! C’mon, we’re the Flash! It’s parallel universes! Grant Gustin is the Flash AND I’m the Flash, don’t you see? It’s the Event Horizon, we crossed it baby! Grant and I are chillin’, we’re gonna have a race, it’s gonna be dope. Like Jay Garrick and Barry Allen back in the day.

The big question now is whether or not the DC multiverse is just an excuse that everyone can toss around in the press whenever someone asks why there are two versions of the Flash or if someone with creative control is going to go crazy and actually have these two universes acknowledge each other.

And prepare for things to get even more confusing! NBC’s Constantine may be dead, but if Arrow executive producer Wendy Mericle has her way, Matt Ryan’s take on the DCU’s sardonic mystic will have a second life on her show:

Yeah, we really want to do it. It’s something we’ve been talking to DC about and it’s just a question of some political things, but also the actor’s schedule. We’re trying to work it out, but we don’t know 100 percent if it’s going to happen, but we’re really optimistic and we would love to have him.

Meanwhile, Arrow producer Marc Guggenheim is claiming that there will be no version of Green Lantern on the CW. Whether this was a creative choice or the film side of DC drawing the line with this particular character (they do have that Green Lantern Corps movie coming) is unknown.

Martin Freeman and Kevin Feige Offer Civil War Updates

We’re still not 100 percent sure who Martin Freeman is playing in Captain America: Civil War, but the delightful Sherlock star has finally started slipping us some hints. We don’t have a name, but we do have a fairly detailed description of his job, which is certainly a start:

He works for the American government. He works in conjunction with the superheroes, and certain agencies that help to tame the superheroes’ power, I suppose. So you’re not quite sure which side he’s on. It looks a little bit like he’s playing one game when actually he’s playing another. It’s the kind of character I like because it’s ambiguous and because you don’t know whether he’s good or bad. I like that area that isn’t black or white, I like the grays, because I think there’s just more fun to be had in not playing one obvious line.

And ethically ambiguous government agent who meddles in the affairs of superheroes? Interesting. As you’d expect, Marvel has Freeman signed up for more movies, should the MCU require more of him:

Unless they fire me, it's a role that will carry on.

For a look at the big picture, we need to go to Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige, who recently spoke at length about the film’s plot. According to the mastermind of the MCU, the massive cast and scope of Civil War doesn’t mean this won’t be one of the most personal Marvel movies yet:

Civil War is a relatively simple story. [Avengers: Age of Ultron] had a lot going on. Civil War is a surprisingly grounded story about two characters that most audience members have come to know and like and admire finding themselves on different sides of a political argument, like the country does on many occasions, and how they both respond to that. That’s the story. So it’s actually a very, very simple story, and then how their personal relationships fit into that.


Can he save his friend? Can he turn the Winter Soldier back into Bucky? Is that even possible? While the Winter Soldier, from most other people’s point of view, is the deadliest, worst assassin of the past 70 years. So some people are like, ‘Cap, you’ve got to let it go. He’s not the guy that you used to know.’ So it’s a surprisingly personal story with a simple and very efficient plot that I think allows all those characters to have a presence and interact in a way different from other films we’ve made.

Yikes, we keep on forgetting that this movie will somehow have to deal with the Winter Soldier as well as the epic showdown between Captain America and Iron Man. There’s going to be a lot of movie in this movie.

Trailers of Note

You’ve probably watched the Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice Comic-Con trailer a dozen times by now, but the much shorter version that will play in theaters has arrived online and it’s actually pretty interesting for what it doesn’t show. Gone are any glimpses of Wonder Woman! Gone is the shot of Robin’s vandalized uniform! The focus in this streamlined version is entirely on the titular conflict.

This TV spot for Fantastic Four contains more energy and action than all of the theatrical trailers combined. Is this a display of confidence or an act of desperation? As with everything surrounding this movie, who the hell knows?

And finally, Ant-Man has been out for a week now, but this truly bizarre advertisement is worthy of your time and love:

Paul Rudd & Michael Douglas lead the ant charge! See Marvel's Ant-Man in theaters today!

Posted by Walt Disney Studios on Saturday, July 18, 2015