Recently, Warner Brothers announced the official synopsis for the upcoming “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” movie:
Fearing the actions of a god-like Super Hero left unchecked, Gotham City’s own formidable, forceful vigilante takes on Metropolis’s most revered, modern-day savior, while the world wrestles with what sort of hero it really needs. And with Batman and Superman at war with one another, a new threat quickly arises, putting mankind in greater danger than it’s ever known before.
I was, to put it politely, underwhelmed. The “heroes fight each other until a villain shows up and they have to work together and discover a bond of mutual respect” plot line is as old as comics (one friend observed its the same plot used in every Marvel Team-Up issue) and, while I appreciate that Warner Bros. is marketing to a wider demographic AND setting up the Justice League franchise, I can’t help but join many of my fellow geeks in rolling my eyes. Falling back on convention is safe, but rarely inspiring.
In one conversation, a colleague asked “What other plot could they have used?” THAT got me thinking.
What other story lines could there be?
CONTEST: Write a Better “Hero vs. Hero” movie synopsis
[CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED TO NEW ENTRIES]
The Challenge: Write a 3 or 5 act movie synopsis (1-2 paragraphs per act) that pits two heroes – one a brooding brilliant human vigilante operating out of “his city”, the other a high-profile super-powered alien who has vowed to protect the earth – against each other.
- 700 words maximum
- The heroes must remain true and consistent with their respective back stories. They can grow and evolve, but the core characters cannot be compromised.
- Both heroes are going to work together as part of a larger hero group in an upcoming film, so the outcome must lay the foundation for them working together.
- The synopsis must offer an alternative or variation on the “heroes fight each other until a villain shows up and they have to work together and discover a bond of mutual respect” trope.
The Deadline: Midnight (Central Time), Tuesday, June 30 (winners to be announced July 15)
The Prizes: 3 winners – 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place – will be selected from the entries by a panel of editors (TBA), and will win one or more of the following books (in e-book format):
- 1st Place – All three books
- 2nd Place – winner’s choice of two of the three listed books
- 3rd Place – winner’s choice of one of the three listed books
The three winners will also have their synopses posted here on the RTP site for all to admire and the First Place Winner will be a guest for a special “Roundtable: Dialogs” episode featuring other astonishing guests (as always) and fabulous conversation (as always).
Entry Submission: The contest is now closed to new entries, but you can check out the Official Contest Rules.
Come on, Literary Alchemists! Show me what ya got!