Heroes in Quarantine: How to Make the Most of DC Universe During the Pandemic | Under the Radar - Music Magazine
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Heroes in Quarantine: How to Make the Most of DC Universe During the Pandemic

Jun 05, 2020
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Seems like just about every studio or network has its own streaming service these days. Netflix (the OG). Amazon. HBO Go. HBO Now. HBO Max (huh?). Hulu. CBS. Disney +. Apple TV. The list goes on and on. There are so many, it becomes virtually impossible to tell which one is worth the monthly fee, which one has enough content to keep you tuning in, and which one is only as good as its one show de jour and can be canceled come the season finale.

Enter DC Universe, DC Comics' foray into the streaming arena. DC Universe is rife with content, some classic, some of it original, and all absolutely worth the price of entry. There are movies; holy rusty rocks, Batman, are there movies. DC Universe boasts a wealth of films, from the Michael Keaton Batman films to exclusive animated features. Speaking of animated, the TV selection is a treasure chest of series, from Batman: The Animated Series and Justice League, which followed, to original live action content like Star Girl and Doom Patrol.

Unlike the aforementioned services, though, DC Universe offers its subscribers a trove of content beyond what's streaming. DC's bread and butter has historically always been its comics-weeklies, monthlies, limited series, and original graphic novels-and DC Universe is loaded with digital reads. Organized to entice the diehard and the newcomer alike, subscribers can search by their favorite character, seminal story arcs, or even "Get to Know" the universe one character at a time through curated selections. The site also features a fan community section, with message boards, sweepstakes, and events, an encyclopedia collecting vast histories of the DCU, and a news feed to help you keep current.

With DC Universe, there's something for every fan of the Justice League, Legion of Doom, and every A, B, and C character that inhabits the DC multi-verse. Let's takes a look at some of the content worth bingeing this summer while practicing social distancing.

By Zach Hollwedel

Harley Quinn

Brace yourself for this one, if you don’t know what it’s about. Rated a hard-R, this isn’t the Harley Quinn of Bruce Timm’s immaculate 90s series. Now in its second season, Harley Quinn finds its titular anti-hero (Kaley Cuoco) on a quest to be inducted into the Legion of Doom, following her most recent split from The Joker. She assembles a ragtag crew composed of Clayface (Alan Tudyk), King Shark (Ron Funches), Dr. Psycho (Tony Hale), her bestie Poison Ivy (Lake Bell), and even their aging, half robot landlord, voiced by Jason Alexander. The show is raunchy, bloody, expletive-laden, and will make you laugh out loud at a cartoon about comic book villains in a way you might have thought you never would.

Heroes in Crisis

Written by Tom King, the first part of the nine-issue series hit shelves in September 2018. It was far from the first Crisis DC’s heroes have faced. Crisis on Infinite Earths. Final Crisis. Identity Crisis. (All of those are on DC Universe, by the way.) But Heroes in Crisis was unlike those that came before. In it, the heroes have Sanctuary, a place that is just that—an undisclosed location where they can go to heal from their wounds, both physical and psychological. When Sanctuary is attacked, the heroes have to find out who did it, who killed their friends and learned their deepest, darkest secrets in the process.

Titans

Robin, Starfire, Beast Boy, Raven, and others are all grown up in this gritty, graphic, violent live-action take on the Titans. When Dick Grayson, a grizzled detective who has long since stepped out from under Bruce Wayne’s shadow, meets Rachel Roth, a young woman struggling with a dark power, the two find themselves on a path that leads to a global threat. Along the way, they meet other unique individuals, and soon form an unlikely team. This isn’t your Teen Titans; these are Titans with baggage and attitude.

Wonder Woman: Bloodlines

Can’t wait for Wonder Woman 1984? Let Wonder Woman: Bloodlines tide you over. The animated feature, exclusive to DC Universe, casts Rosario Dawson as the eponymous hero fighting to rescue a troubled young girl from the clutches of a dastardly organization known as Villainy, Inc.

Batman: The Animated Series

Okay, I've already mentioned it a few times so far, but Batman: The Animated Series is the crowning achievement of superhero cartoons. It simply doesn't get any better than this. Kevin Conroy's voice remains the definitive Batman voice for those who grew up watching the show, even two and a half decades later. Mark Hamill's Joker is bar none. Uniquely drawn on black paper, the show oozed tone and grit and mise en scene. It set an unattainable threshold for generations of cartoons to come, and I would argue, has yet to be bested.

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