As we told you yesterday, in this article, Gotham City Sirens is heading to the screen via the directorial leadership of David Ayer. While I am excited at the proposition of a movie starring Harley Quinn, Poison Ivy and Catwoman (and some Batman if all goes according to the title run), a few questions come to mind. Namely, how closely to the plot will they stay and – if so – where exactly does it fit in to the new DC Comics movie universe (The DCEU or DC Extended Universe)? What does this movie mean for the other movies in the DCEU?
The DCEU is interwoven and connected and is one large tapestry of superhero adventure and world building. 2013’s “Man of Steel” bled right in to the opening sequences of 2016’s “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” and the fallout from that movie led to the next film, David Ayer’s Suicide Squad. “Dawn of Justice” will also give rise to the upcoming Justice League film as well as the solo films for each of the ensemble characters. These will take us all the way to the year 2020. It makes sense, then, to presume that Gotham City Sirens will follow suit and connect itself to this DC Extended Universe and use characters already established (such as Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn). It also makes sense to presume that David Ayer and Geoff Johns, being the forward thinkers they are, will plant the proverbial seeds for the movie in the upcoming movies. So let’s take a look at the plot to Gotham City Sirens, how it can make sense and what it may mean for other films in the inter-connected world of cinematic, live-action DC Comics.
Beginning in 2009, and lasting for 26 issues, Gotham City Sirens opens acrobatically (literally and metaphorically) with Catwoman dancing across the buildings of Gotham as the narration weaves a tale spun from other titles and story arcs to this new one.
Catwoman is confronted by d-list villain “The Boneblaster” but is immediately aided by Poison Ivy who reveals, with Boneblaster now incapacitated, that she is roommates with Edward Nigma, a retired and reformed Riddler. They travel back to Ivy’s apartment and find Nigma drugged on plant toxins. But we also get another reference and critical inter-weaving clue.
As they discuss the “Hush money”, we get to meet our third Siren, Harley Quinn:
Harley Quinn, Catwoman and Poison Ivy then begin discussing the circumstances around their all being there and how they came to be roommates. Poison Ivy says she helped out Catwoman with Boneblaster because she was “moving way too slow”. So now, references to Catwoman’s heart. Poison Ivy, via her plant connections, decides to visit Zatanna to ask questions about Catwoman and her heart operation.
What? Her operation? What is she talking about? Why is Catwoman’s heart so weak now?
They are referring to a story arc that began in 2008’s Detective Comics #846 in which a villain, Dr. Thomas Elliot, literally rips the heart out of Selina Kyle’s chest.
The Heart of Hush story line involved numerous characters on both sides of the moral fence in the Bat-family such as Thomas Elliot, Catwoman, Oracle, Mr. Freeze, Scarecrow, Dr Mid-Nite, Harley Quinn and Nightwing.
But let’s get back to Gotham City Sirens for a moment and issue number two, where Catwoman again reflects back on what happened to her. The girls are interrogating her because she knows the identity of Batman. In fact, she has a rather intimate and (in)famous kiss with Batman in one particular issue of Batman, volume.1. Gotham City Sirens propels forward with this one pivotal moment in mind, the kiss and her knowledge.
In issue 2 she speaks of Thomas Elliot again:
But there’s more. Elliot – the villainous Hush – is not merely a flashback, he’s not a reference. He’s here, in Gotham City, in Gotham City Sirens and he makes an impact. Let’s cut to Harley Quinn who is out for a stroll in Gotham, where she encounters a certain Bruce Wayne. But see the image above, It’s not Bruce. It’s Elliot … Hush.
So now we have to ask ourselves, for a Gotham City Sirens movie to work, to make sense and to stay true to its comic book source material, who would the villain(s) be for these three roommates?
How do we get to a point in the DCEU where a Joker-less Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy are living with a Catwoman who knows the identity of the big black bat?
How do we explain a man in Gotham, with a stolen face, masquerading as Bruce Wayne?
How do we even get to a point where Catwoman is recovering from the horrific and traumatic experience of having her beating heart ripped out of her body?
How do you plant the seeds for this in the current DCEU with its confirmed slate of upcoming movies?
Hush my friends and faithful readers, and I will answer these burning questions. Keep reading because “Heart of Hush” is not the droid you are looking for. Heat of Hush would not exist without one thing. Gotham City Sirens would not exist without one thing.
At the onset of the year 2003, Jeph Loeb, Jim Lee and Scott Williams took over creative control of “Batman” from Ed Brubaker and Scott McDaniel. Their first issue together, issue #608, began one of the most harrowing, exciting and – arguably – one of the best Batman stories ever. The story itself ran through twelve issues, to issue # 619 and featured nearly the entire rogues gallery of Batman villains. The action, mystery, intrigue and depth of this story make it rise to the top as one of the best. Clayface, Harley Quinn, Scarecrow, The Joker, Two-Face, Killer Croc, Poison Ivy, Catwoman and The Riddler all make appearances. But all of these villains are driven by one thing, one man: Thomas Elliot. Yep, the same Thomas Elliot that we see in Heart of Hush and the same Thomas Elliot that takes Harley Quinn on a date in Gotham City Sirens. The same Hush that ripped out Catwoman’s heart. He’s a Hush constantly echoed through the stories of DC Comics since Lee and Loeb first put him to paper back in 2003. All of the players in Gotham City Sirens are here and all of them need Hush.
Hush is gritty, action-packed and cerebral, exactly what Ben Affleck said about his movie. It is great, the best and something that Affleck would be happy scripting. He said, adamantly, that he wouldn’t move forward on a film that was anything less than fantastic. Hush is all that, and more.
So there we have it, a story worthy of Ben Affleck’s attention, a story that needs to be told for Gotham City Sirens to be adapted to film and remain true to the title and a story that will put a plethora of DC characters on the cinematic map from which DCEU can draw for future films.
But we are not done yet, a couple of questions still remain.
What about this?
As you know, this particular Robin costume was encased in glass in the Batcave in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. This memorial to Batman’s fallen Robin have led many to postulate that The Batman will be either the “A Death In The Family” story or a “Red Hood/Under the Red Hood” story (both of which are excellent by the way). Both of these stories revolve around Robin II’s (Jason Todd) death at the hands of The Joker back in 1988. Where did this story, and Jason Todd for that matter, start to see its way back? Hush. Hush is where we first get to entertain the idea that Jason Todd might, in fact, still be around.
Further, Mark Hamill spoke in front of an audience at the 2016 Fan Expo Canada and teased wide-eyed panel listeners with the prospect that A Death In The Family would be heading to WB Animation for production. Hamill knows DC, especially the Joker, a character he has played since 1993’s Batman: Mask of the Phantasm. Most recently, he played The Joker in “The Killing Joke”, in which Batman gives the Joker the beating of his life. Well – one of them.
Guess what, the scene is recalled in Hush.
So what do you think? Will The Batman adapt the Hush story line? What do you think of Gotham City Sirens? Sound off in the comments below with your opinions.