Coming well ahead of a long-discussed live-action film which director Doug Limon has most recently been attached to, Warner Brothers Animation will be releasing Justice League Dark as an R-rated animated feature. The plot sees Batman assembling a team of mighty monsters and macabre magicians to combat supernatural threats which the Justice League is simply unequipped to handle. Get the gist of that gathering below.
TV viewers should be well familiar with John Constantine, by now. The cantankerous plain clothes exorcist has been played by Matt Ryan throughout different DC shows, and he’ll be reprising the role in Justice League Dark‘s voice cast. The other heroic occultists on the team are might more obscure, though. Either they’ve only ever been guest stars on screen or, in the plant man’s case, it’s been over 20 years since they’ve had top billing. Consider the following a pocket-sized grimoire, distilling all the arcana of these characters’ complicated backstories down to just the quick facts you oughta know.
Trapeze artist Boston Brand could execute impressive aerial feats, but he couldn’t escape demons of addiction, nor ultimately evade an assassin’s attack. Post-mortem, Brand’s soul was brought to a Limbo-like realm by the goddess Rama Kushna and forced to atone for his sorry life as bodiless ghost, hopping from body to body on the mortal plane. Deadman makes a most unusual possessing spirit, having never shaken his irrascible East coast attitude and thick accent.
Daughter and successor to Zatara, a stage magician who moonlighted as an actual magician, this heroine continues the family tradition by bringing a theatrical flair to fighting evil. While the wizards of Hogwarts Academy cast spells by calling out pseudo-Latin incantations, Zatanna‘s magic words consist entirely of reverse speak. If she shouts “tibbar,” you better believe a rabbit’s going to pop up. Constantine is an actually an ex of Zatanna’s, having studied beside her under a powerful mag who ultimately went off the deep end.
True to his name, Etrigan is a fell creature from the nether realm, breathing fire and smelling of brimstone. Like Zatanna, his style of speech is one of his most memorable traits. Etrigan always speaks in rhymes, as that reflects his social standing in the hierarchy of the underworld. Despite what appearances suggest, at first, the Demon actually has a secret identity. He’s been bonded to the human, Jason Blood, since the wizard Merlin joined them together during the Arthurian era. They swap places on Earth by–what else?–reciting rhyming spells.
For a long time, this mossy creature believed he was the man Alec Holland, horrifically mutated after a treacherous attack on his research lab left him fleeing to bayou while covered in burning chemicals. Later, Swamp Thing realized he wasn’t a man transformed into a plant. He was a plant who believed he was a man. Holland’s consciousness had actually imprinted on an Earth elemental, and Swamp Thing soon realized he was a protector of “the Green,” a mystical network which all floronic life is connected to. He’s a bit like Treebeard from Lord of the Rings, speaking very, very slowly.
What’s your temperature on the JLD? Are you hoping for appearances from other characters plucked out of DC’s supernatural side? Sound off in the talkback.
Image Credits: Warner