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Future State Superman rips a page from The Doctor’s playbook to save Metropolis

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In DC’s Future State, Jonathan Kent, the son of Clark Kent and Lois Lane, is the world’s Superman. “Future State: Superman of Metropolis no. 1” introduces a Jon Kent who knows that he has big red boots to fill since, In this comic, Metropolis is becoming more like the crime-ridden Gotham City.

After saving a boy from getting killed in the middle of a standoff between technological zealots and the U.S. Army, Jon plans on taking an artificial intelligence called “Brain Cells,” away from Metropolis. Brain Cells is derived from Braniac’s remains after the villain was defeated by Jon and Supergirl. Jon’s plan is to keep Brain Cells away from the City of Tomorrow so it can no longer control the zealots.

While pulling Brain Cells away, Superman executes his most drastic plan to save Metropolis: bottle the City of Tomorrow. So, just like Kandor after Krypton’s destruction, Metropolis is encapsulated. This tactic is similar to one used by The Doctor and his twelve incarnations in the BBC TV series “Doctor Who.”

In the 50th Anniversary Episode “The Day of the Doctor,” the 11th, 10th, and War Doctors hatch a plan to save Galifrey. The Doctors plan to use their TARDISES to encapsulate the Time Lord’s home planet, Galifrey, in a pocket universe to save it from the Daleks, enemies of the Time Lords. When they pitch their plan to Galifrey’s leaders, they fear that measure would force the planet to be lost. They also fear that the planet would have nothing. The 11th Doctor tells them that they would have hope. Something that they did not have.

The Doctors then call on their previous nine incarnations to help out in their plan. As the Daleks close in on Galifrey, the Time Lord High Command urges the Doctors to carry out their plan. And, as a result, all 12 incarnations of the Doctor use their TARDISES to place Galifrey in the pocket universe. However, all of the Doctors memories incarnations would not remember this event. Furthermore, the Ninth Doctor, regenerated from the dying War Doctor would believe that he destroyed Galifrey.

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If you are Doctor Who fan, you could probably see the similarities behind Jon and the Doctors’ motivations. Like the Doctors not wanting Galifrey to suffer, Jon did not want to see Metropolis burn with Brain Cells controlling the zealots. And like the Doctors, it is likely the Jon believes that Metropolis will still have hope to survive while encapsulated.

However, not everyone is happy about Jon’s plan. Kara Zor-El is not keen on Jon’s idea to have Metropolis bottled. She notes that the U.S. Military told her that he had destroyed Metropolis. This sentiment is very similar to the Ninth Doctor believing that he had destroyed Galifrey rather than save it. Kara also reprimands Jon for imprisoning Metropolis due to the city’s descent into a crime-ridden metropolitan like Gotham.

In addition, one can argue that some of Metropolis’ citizens would agree with the Time Lord’s concerns about encapsulating a populace. For instance, the new Guardian of Metropolis mentions that the city’s air quality was dwindling along with food supplies. Furthermore, Jimmy Olsen notes that bottling up Metropolis was something Superman would never do. However, being Superman’s Pal, he believes that there has to be more to the plan.

This plan was the former Superboy’s way of giving Metropolis a chance to survive. However, Jon’s plan backfires when he discovers that Brain Cells has used Brainaic’s tech to invade the city. Worse, the AI vows to protect Metropolis from Jon which will likely cause Metropolis’ citizens to turn against the young Superman. Maybe like The Doctor pitching his plan to Galifrey High Command, Jon should have at least filled in Jimmy, Kara, or perhaps the U.S. Military on what he was planning to do. 

Brian Adigwu

Brian of Earth-16 is a podcaster for the Geek Talk with Brian of Earth-16 and a contributing writer/journalist for the Daily Planet. You can also hear Brian on the DC Comics Geeks Nation podcast. When not writing, Brian enjoys going to the world of comic books, TV shows, video games, and pro-wrestling. He also loves listening to other podcasts and having a philosophical conversation.

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