It has been confirmed David S. Goyer is bringing Krypton to SyFy. The news was met with mixed reactions. Many people are worried it will be met with many of Gotham‘s problems, like trying to throw every reference they can into every episode, rather than create their own mythos. This time period in Krypton’s history is relatively unexplored, with little more than the occasional allusion. We could see things like the origin of Brainiac, perhaps a new version of the origin of Cyborg Superman (to some extent), perhaps Doomsday (NO NO NO). There’s so many things they could do, and so little they won’t.
David S. Goyer was the man behind the Man of Steel, and I can imagine Krypton will feel very much so like Krypton did in the film, with the dinosaur things, and the weird looking cities. This may be something to SyFy’s benefit. By exploring that world, years before it was shown in Man of Steel, there are so many plot points that we could see. Let’s take a look at the dos and don’ts of Krypton:
- Do: Show us a Green Lantern. With Warner Bros./DC Comics Television constantly trying to spin itself off into new shows, show us a something believable. With Krypton probably not focusing on any “superhero” aspects, and more likely a relational drama, showing a Green Lantern could keep the show grounded enough in the overall universe of DC Comics, without forcing Superman aspects down anyone’s throat in an unbelievable way. You could show Abin Sur, or someone of that relative recognizable standing, but possibly no more than as a cameo or one time plot device.
- Don’t (and a Do): I do not want to see any references to Doomsday. This show takes place long before Clark’s time, and should not focus on any form of crime fighting. The show should be a political drama about the families, much like Game of Thrones, by throwing Doomsday in there, you bring a more unbelievable aspect to a Sci Fi show. Is that even possible? Doomsday doesn’t fit with Superman’s Grandfather on Krypton. The only way they could work is if Kryptonians had super powers, which they don’t. Maybe allude to the “ancient Doomsday,” or something.
- Don’t (And a Maybe Do): Don’t give Kryptonians powers. Kryptonians don’t have powers like Superman did, since Krypton had a Red Sun. A Red Sun is one of the things that would remove Superman’s strength (and other powers) so giving them powers would take away from the realism. And don’t just give them a yellow sun just so they can give them powers.
However! They could give Krypton a yellow sun and watch it transition from it’s typical, power giving, life supporting yellow properties, to burning off it’s hydrogen slowly throughout the show’s run explaining Krypton’s impending doom, and eventual death, with Jor El’s father being the only one seeing it coming, and the family being ostracized for their “insanity.” A political move by the rivaling Zod family to control power, and drive the El family out. Eventually, everyone would regret going along with this, sometime in the shows final season (That I could get behind.) Tl;Dr? Yellow sun decaying, everyone’s powers are erratic, leading to the sun going red, as a plot device explaining some of the politics, and the eventual death of Krypton. The only downside to this, though, is wouldn’t the yellow sun give them the weakness to their own planets geology?
- Do: I’d like to see a young Jor El on the dating scene, and eventually getting married, with allusions to Kandor, Jor El’s in-laws (or sibling’s family) and the eventual birth of Kara later in the series. Don’t show Kara or Kal El until the show has a limit for how long it will last, like the last season. By having the kids in the show it severely limits how long the show can last, with their eventual arrivals on earth at a certain age limiting how long you have with them.
- Do: I’d like to see Zod and his family (possibly parents at this point) and allies. Set it up like a political drama, with the El family rivaling the Zod family, and set up the future of Zod the criminal and his eventual imprisonment in the Phantom Zone.
- Don’t: Don’t show Krypto, he’d be really old by the time Superman was born, if this show focuses on Kal El’s father (unless Kryptonian pets have extended lifetimes, which I doubt). You could, however, give the main characters a pet alluding to the possibility of Krypto (maybe Krypto’s parents?). There are a few ways you could allude to Krypto without actually creating him, and I would like to see Goyer go that route, rather than showing Krypto, even as a puppy.
- Do: Create a rich, unique world, filled with nods to the comics, without doing it so much it takes the comic book reading viewer out of the show. If you’re going to tie the show in to other properties, then you can get away with nods and references, since they lead less to speculation, and more to connection. A show like Gotham or Krypton, however, don’t have any ties to other properties, so too many nods or references that aren’t fully explained or utilized, take the viewer out of the show. Keep things grounded., light, and fun. Try not to make the show so dark that the viewer has to watch Breaking Bad to feel good again. Keep some fun involved, and make the show it’s own, unique entity. Don’t draw from Man of Steel, or people are going to assume that this show takes place in the same world, and don’t draw too many parallels from Gotham, or people will assume the same.
I hope the show is fun, and filled with references I can enjoy and believe. I hope the show takes us in a new direction for Superman lore, and I hope that they don’t spend too much time explaining every detail to non-comic readers. Just make the show you want to make, people will be ok. We’re not dumb, and if someone is watching it and they don’t get something, they will find out for themselves by reading comics or asking friends. A comic book show benefits from leaving unanswered questions that only comic fans can enjoy. It self promotes your property for others to explore further. Shows like the Flash and Arrow seem to have that formula down pretty good.
Now don’t disappoint me.
What do you guys want to see in Krypton? Any characters, references or allusions? Keep in mind, the show focuses on Jor El’s father, not Jor El himself. This sets the show back a reasonable amount of time.