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"Brave New Metropolis"

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Superman: TAS episode
Brave New Metropolis
"Brave New Metropolis"
Airdate: September 27, 1997 (USA)
Production Number: 025
Airdate Order: 25
Animation Services by: Koko/Dong Yang
Written by: Stan Berkowitz
Directed by: Curt Geda
Episode images (6)

"Brave New Metropolis" is the twenty-fifth episode of Superman: The Animated Series. It depicts Lois being transported into an alternative dimension where she has been killed by Intergang, and Superman, distraught over Lois's death, has teamed up with Luthor to turn Metropolis into a police state. After Luthor learns that Lois is "still alive" he tries to have her killed so that he can keep Superman under his control.

Plot

Out at S.T.A.R. Labs, Jimmy and Lois are being shown a machine built by Professor Hamilton that is based on the Phantom Zone projector. It's supposed to provide a window into other dimensions, but it doesn't seem to work. However, when Lois looks between the machine's two posts, she notices the glass between them looks cracked while anything around the posts is whole. As she looks over it, however, she gets too close and is pulled into the alternate dimension.

Lois ends up in a decrepit and destroyed S.T.A.R. Labs and heads off to Metropolis. The streets seem to be deserted, however, and Lois discovers a large statue of Superman and Luthor's heads declaring them "the men who saved Metropolis". Lois is then confronted by Turpin, who demands to see her curfew card. When he finds she doesn't have one, he attempts to arrest her but a group of shaggy men break into a building and start firing on him. Amongst these men is Jimmy, who runs into Lois. Before he can say anything, however, Superman arrives and violently stops the gang. Jimmy drags Lois away before they're noticed.

Jimmy leads Lois away and explains to her that she's supposed to be dead: while Lois was working on an Intergang piece and they attempted to kill her with a car bomb. However, Lois remembers that Superman saved her. Jimmy, however, claims that Superman was actually too late to save her, and then became brutal and turned the city into a police state.

The duo arrives in a building filled with more downtrodden people and Jimmy reveals that his mission was to steal a rock of kryptonite. Unfortunately, a group of soldiers led by Mercy arrives and take the people into custody. Lois is taken to Luthor, who expresses some surprise at her being alive, yet he finds that he cannot deny it. Deciding that she's too dangerous to be kept around, he tells Mercy to kill her. Fortunately, Mercy and Lois run into Angela Chen, who distracts Mercy long enough to allow Lois to take Mercy's gun and escape.

Lois runs through the city and climbs up a large Superman/Luthor monument and fights off a group of police helicopters. In spite of this victory, she is injured and Superman soon arrives. However, when he sees his target is Lois, his demeanor instantly changes. He saves her from falling when she faints and takes her somewhere safe. All of this is witnessed by Mercy, who reports to Luthor.

Elsewhere, Lois explains about her origins and Superman explains that his Lois' death shocked him into realizing that his heroics were futile. He decided that he needed to take control to stop all crime. Lois wonders why he would go so crazy just over her, and Superman admits that he was in love with her. Lois is angered not only at his hiding her feelings for her, but for joining up with Luthor as well. Superman claims that Luthor is in check, but when he learns of Luthor's true actions, he becomes enraged and confronts his partner.

Faced with certain death, Luthor starts his fast-talking and then reveals he now has the chunk of kryptonite Jimmy had stolen. Lois tries to save Superman but Mercy stops her. As the two women fight, Luthor tells Superman that he'll smooth-talk the people of Metropolis and become their savior. Just as he says this, the rebels arrive and reveal they know Luthor's true intent. Luthor runs and Mercy tries to follow, but is tripped and the crowd advances on her. Luthor manages to escape in a flying vehicle, but Superman goes after him. All of Luthor's attempts to shake his enemy off the vehicle come to naught. But when Superman gets too close to catching him, Luthor uses his kryptonite to force him away. Unfortunately for Luthor, Superman damages the vehicle enough to cause it to go out of control. Luthor is unable to eject, and crashes into the side of the monument bearing his own face, killing him and marring the statue in his likeness.

With Luthor gone and Superman in check once again, he and Lois go to S.T.A.R. Labs and discuss the rebuilding of Metropolis. However, a portal opens, and our world's Superman comes through, calling Lois back home. The alternate Superman swears that even though he's losing Lois again, it won't change things for the city. Lois kisses the alternate Superman and then returns home. Back at home, she decides to never let her own Metropolis to suffer the same fate as the alternate one, and invites Superman to dinner.

Background information

Home video releases

Production notes

  • The van that Superman blows up features reused footage from "My Girl", specifically the scene in which Mr. Eelan blows a vat of hot lead off its support.
  • Likewise, when the motor of Luthor's jets catches fire, the ensuing explosion features reused footage from the gas canisters that Superman ignites in "The Way of All Flesh".

Trivia

  • The title of the episode is inspired by Aldous Huxley's Brave New World.
  • This episode's theme would later echo in the Justice League two-parter "A Better World", with a much greater scale of Superman's fascist oppression.
  • First time Lois kisses Superman, albeit an alternate dimension's version of him.
  • The "S" worn by alternate Superman is based on the SS logo. This "S" logo was also used by Overman, a version of Superman who landed in Nazi Germany just before the start of World War II, becoming the successor of the original Superman of his Earth, and helped put an end to the Final Crisis along with many other Supermen from many different Earths.
  • Luthor's tactic of weakening Superman with a chunk of Kryptonite, fleeing in an airship when confronted by reinforcements and having an accident would later be repeated in the Justice League episode "Injustice For All, Part I", the only differences being that Luthor had a heart attack and was narrowly saved from crashing in the latter.
  • In Teen Titans (Vol. 3) #17, the Teen Titans end up in a future where many of them have taken the names of their given mentors (such as Robin as Batman, and Superboy as Superman). In the Tomorrow Titans tower, their "Hall Of Mentors" features a statue of Superman and Lex Luthor back to back representing their parts in who Superboy is like the one in this episode does for what the "Brave New Metropolis" is.

Cast

Actor Role
Tim Daly Superman
Superman (alternate) (uncredited)
Dana Delany Lois Lane
Joseph Bologna Dan Turpin (alternate)
Cop (uncredited)
David Kaufman Jimmy Olsen
Jimmy Olsen (alternate) (uncredited)
Clancy Brown Lex Luthor (alternate)
Revolutionary (uncredited)
Lisa Edelstein Mercy Graves (alternate)
Lauren Tom Angela Chen (alternate)
Broadcaster (uncredited)
Tress MacNeille Revolutionary
Victor Brandt Professor Hamilton

Quotes

Alternate Lex Luthor: The insolence. The outright rudeness. She's definitely the genuine article.


Lois: Hey, I'm not finished!
Alternate Lex Luthor: I beg to differ.


Alternate Angela Chen: Lois? Lois Lane? My God, it's you, it's really you!! You're alive, after all these years! Can you loan me a dollar?


Lois: So, I am Lois Lane, but I'm not the Lois Lane that you knew...
Alternate Superman: Ever since you-- she died I've wondered if there were other dimensions out there. Other versions of me... and you.
Lois: Hold it! I may be a lot like your Lois, but you're nothing like the Superman I know! He's no tyrant.
Alternate Superman: I had to take control, there was no other way. For too long I fooled myself into thinking I was just doing a simple clean-up job. And if I did enough good, people would follow my example. I didn't realize it was a war. And suddenly you were a casualty of that war. And I knew I had to stop it by whatever means possible.


Alternate Superman: You never knew what I felt about you. I never knew, till you were gone.
Lois: (slaps him) You could've said something. We could've talked about it and figured it out! Now look at you... married to Luthor...


Alternate Superman: I never thought I'd lose you... twice.
Lois: Will it change anything?
Alternate Superman: For me, but not for Metropolis. Not this time.


Superman: So that was me?
Lois: Yes. And... no. It-it's complicated. I could explain it over dinner.
Superman: Dinner? Are we getting a little personal?
Lois: Better now than never...



Previously produced episode:
"Solar Power"
Episodes of
Superman: The Animated Series
Next produced episode:
"Monkey Fun"
Previously aired episode:
"Solar Power"
Next aired episode:
"Monkey Fun"

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