Superman V - Part 5
Written by Fred Walker, Edited
by Fred Walker and Marvelite
SUPERMAN V DOOMSDAY
A screenplay by Fred Walker
Based on a novel by Roger Stern
"You'll Believe a Man has Died!"
(Author's note: The basic concept here is to do a "Death and Life" storyline within the continuity of the previous Superman movies. The title is a Latin pun. It can be read either as "Superman 5: Doomsday!" or "Superman versus Doomsday.")
Continued from Superman V Doomsday Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4
MONTAGE of a "Reign of the Supermen" sequence. Superboy and The Eradicator in a city-wide game of one-upsmanship, each doing ever-more spectacular heroic deeds, covered by a doting press, with only The Daily Planet not taking sides and publicly endorsing one of them as the "real" New Superman.
INT. LOIS LANE'S OFFICE -- DAY.
CLOSE-UP on her COMPUTER SCREEN. EMAIL from Cat Grant inviting her to guest-host The Cat Grant Show to moderate a super-debate.
She types and uploads her acceptance.
INT. LUTHOR'S HIDEOUT -- DAY.
Luthor and Mercy are in bed watching breakfast TV. She is dressed like Harley Quinn, and he's wearing her uniform.
Admit it Lex! There's nothing like 2 girls together!
Ooh, I'm a head on a Harley!
It's a commercial, my sweet. Before your time.
Quiet please. There's a lady on stage.
INT. TV SCREEN -- DAY.
Lois hosting The Cat Grant Show, with guests Superboy and The Eradicator. Superboy wears a T-SHIRT that says, "Lois Lane marks out for Superboy."
Good morning, and welcome to a special edition of
The Cat Grant Show. Sitting in for Cat Grant,
this is Lois Lane of The Daily Planet. Today,
2 would-be Supermen will make their cases,
and you get to judge their merits. But first ...
(through gritted teeth)
Lose the shirt.
You heard her folks! Would any of you ladies
like to see me take my shirt off?
TEENYBOPPERS scream. Superboy playfully peels and gets UNDERWEAR thrown at him by the teenyboppers. Lois begins the debate.
There have many claimants to the S-shield,
because the world needs a Superman.
Let me list a few: Some drunk named Bibbo,
a 7-foot basketball star from New York,
and a certain Cyborg in Washington
who really had them going until his partner
The Bionic Woman told him to quit it or
she'd break his other arm, and Oscar Goldman
threatened to dock his OSI pension.
Laughter. PAN audience.
To start with, why don't both of you "supermen"
briefly tell us your respective claims?
CLOSE-UP on The Eradicator.
I remember a battle ...
(beat. it seems a painful memory.)
Bless Krypton and the House of El.
Their legacy, and the technology of my Fortress,
have given me new life. The heart of
Krypton's Last Son will keep beating.
Once I could see to the ends of the Earth,
if I so desired, and now the dimmest light
blinds me. I don't know if I'll ever get used
to that. I must not give in to despair.
I may have lost the gift of supernormal sight,
but I am alive! My senses, my body
may have changed ... but I am still strong!
I can fly free of gravity's hold.
I still posses powers and abilities far beyond
normal men. The people cry out for Superman!
I must be their champion!
Um, I guess that will do for an opening statement.
CLOSE-UP on Superboy.
Oh yeah? Well I was cloned to have Superman's powers.
And I've been endorsed by the major media, dude!
"Be a clone/ Be a clone/ All the world loves a clone!"
Superman ... that's me. The one and only.
All other claims to the contrary.
I'm here to give you the story of the century, moi!
What's the problem? Don't I look mature enough?
Superboy leans on the PODIUM, adjusting his shades, combing his do and flirting with the CURVACEOUS CAMERAWOMAN.
There! Doesn't that make me look older? Whoa! Who is that?
She's the camerawoman. Tana Something.
I don't remember her last name.
Hey, Lois, baby -- get a hold of yourself!
This jealousy of yours is unbecoming.
(sputtering with rage)
J-jealousy! Jealous? Of you? ... Why you conceited,
arrogant little ... You are 5 seconds away, flyboy
-- and Lois Lane means 5 seconds away!
There's that green-eyed monster again! It's a curse.
Why don't you just take the night off?
Finally! I wondered how long it would take
to get under your skin.
He beckons to Teenyboppers.
C'mon girls! We're blowing this popsicle stand!
He EXITS with Teenyboppers, glad to be out of there!
When we return after these brief messages ...
"Superman" will debate me.
2 COMMERCIALS for Superboy tie-in products: an S-SHIELD LEATHER JACKET and the "Lois Lane marks out ..." T-SHIRT.
INT. THE TV STUDIO -- DAY.
Welcome back. I'd like to call "Superman" here
on both of his main points. First of all,
do you really remember Superman's life?
It's my life. Why wouldn't I remember it?
In that case, I have a few questions for you.
I stand for cross-examination, Miss Lane.
What was your father's name?
Jor-El. My mother was Lara. I had an uncle named Zor-El,
an aunt Allura, and the world knows about my cousin Kara.
Simple enough. What about your Earth parents?
You know I can't answer that, Miss Lane.
It would give away my secret identity.
Where did your spaceship land?
I cannot answer that either, for the same reason.
If people knew where the landing site was,
they could work out who must have adopted me,
and figure out my identity from there.
Cat and mouse suspense. She has to ask things only Superman would know, without eliciting answers that, if he is Superman, will give away his secret identity. When The Eradicator refuses to answer, is he being circumspect, or is he ignorant of the facts?
Here's a question that gives away nothing.
Name the first witness who ever saw you
do something "super."
That would be you, Miss Lane.
Bullshit! The real Superman had powers
from early childhood. Haven't you ever heard of
"The Adventures of Superman, When He was a Boy?"
The correct answer is Lana Lang.
You just picked the helicopter rescue
because it was well known.
No, Miss Lane. You are mistaken.
I did not mean the time I saved you from
a helicopter crash here in Metropolis.
I meant that time you saw me in Smallville.
Long pause. Lois is speechless.
When ... when did I see you ... when did I see
Superman in Smallville? I never lived there.
It was years ago. I was helping the
Sheriff of Smallville with a trifling matter.
I needed my super-speed to outrace a train.
I didn't even have a costume yet,
so I ran in my street clothes. There was
a little girl riding as a passenger on that train.
She looked out the window and saw me.
I later found out that you were that little girl.
FLASHBACK to the famous "train sequence" in Superman I.
BACK TO SCENE.
CLOSE-UP on Lois.
I ... I remember. I was a little girl ...
I saw a boy running faster than a train.
I told my parents, but they didn't believe me.
They told me I fell asleep on the train
and dreamt it ... all these years I thought
... I thought it was just my imagination!
PAN audience. Astonished reactions. He knew something about Superman that even Lois Lane didn't know!
I concede that you know your Superman lore.
Let's see how good you are on the history of Planet Krypton.
Fire away, Miss Lane.
What was The Science Council?
The supreme governing body of Krypton.
Krypton had world government, and was
a meritocracy. The best and the brightest
were promoted, not elected, to power,
regardless of popularity. My father Jor-El
was president of The Science Council.
He was a very unpopular man.
And the Phantom Zone?
The way we punished criminals, as Krypton
had no capital punishment. The Kryptonian coup-
plotters came from the Phantom Zone.
Don't you remember punching out Ursa?
FLASHBACK to the punch from Superman II.
BACK TO SCENE.
CLOSE-UP on Lois' sadistic smile.
I do indeed. The bitch had it coming.
What are the Fire Falls?
#1 tourist attraction.
The Scarlet Jungle?
The Kryptonian Hell. Created by a weird experiment.
Of course you remember the guy with the horn,
the one who found the cure for Virus X.
Must we resort to trick questions?
There is no cure for Virus X. It ravaged
the planet, even before the Great Explosion.
Audience gasps. She can't even stump him with trick questions.
You win round one, "Superman." After this
commercial let's see how well you do ...
MONTAGE of people around the world in all different cultures cranking the volume on their TV SETS with excited exclamations, all of which are translated in SUBTITLES as "This is it!"
2 more commercials for Superboy products: ACTION FIGURES and BACK-ISSUES of Superboy in Action Comics autographed by Krypto! (with a pawprint.)
They're super! Tell em, boy!
INT. THE TV STUDIO -- DAY.
Lois and The Eradicator repeat the previous segment, word for word, in Kryptonese. BACKSTAGE HELP scramble to find someone who knows the language without success. Cat runs out on stage.
I'm sorry, Lois, but I have to take back my show.
I can't stand the suspense! You've heard enough by now.
Is he or isn't he?
(politely, to Eradicator)
Your Kryptonese is fluent. In fact,
you speak it like a native. But Superman isn't.
A native, I mean. Superman, the real one,
was raised on Earth. He learned his Kryptonese
from tapes, like a Berlitz course.
He speaks it with the worst Kansas drawl
you've ever heard. You're a fake!
Now tell us who you really are.
CLOSE-UP on Eradicator. He removes his visor, revealing weird alien ROBOT SENSORS where his eyes should be!
In previous visits to this planet I was known as
PAN the TV studio as people stampede for the doorways, and UNIFORMED SECURITY spill in with AUTOMATIC WEAPONS.
Eradicator raises his fists to project blasts, and ENERGY swirls around him.
Lois lunges in front of him as a human shield.
No! Don't shoot! Haven't we had enough of this?
Have you forgotten Doomsday already?
A strange creature appeared from nowhere.
He looked dangerous, so everybody started
fighting with him. Big surprise: he fought back.
For once can't we at least try talking to the
scary monster instead of trying to kill him?
The last time he was here he tried to destroy the world!
This time, he has done nothing but good deeds.
There is a saying on your planet.
By their fruits ye shall know them.
INT. THE GREEN ROOM -- DAY.
Superboy watching a monitor with a SOFT DRINK and a girl on either arm.
He's a fruit! He admits it! Now aren't you girls
glad you're with a real man?
They squeal and giggle.
Oops, almost forgot the ol' product placement!
He holds up the soft drink can and turns the label to the camera.
Yes folks, Superboy drinks delicious PC Cola!
You don't have to be Post-Crisis to like it ...
but Honey, it sure helps!
CLOSE-UP on his smarmy wink!
INT. THE TV STUDIO -- DAY.
Eradicator tells his story, assisted by FLASHBACKS.
I must seem a strange visitor from another planet.
I am an artificial intelligence from Krypton.
I arrived on Earth years ago on a Kryptoforming
mission (which is terraforming from the
point of view of Krypton.) The scientist who
invented me, Jax-Ur, either didn't know
that Earth was inhabited or didn't care.
On 2 previous occasions, I have tried
to remodel Earth to look like Krypton,
changing the course of mighty rivers ...
Both times I have been foiled by Superman
and hurled into the Sun. But being from Krypton,
I am an invulnerable robot. I cannot be destroyed.
Every time I am exiled, I fly back to Earth orbit
to renew my program. This time is different.
On the flight back from the Sun, I reflected
that Krypton itself was not remodelled to look like
some other planet. To really be like Krypton,
Earth must be permitted to be true to itself,
just like Krypton was. So I have built myself
a Fortress at the South Pole. I have decided
my new mission must be to transform myself
into the image of the Last Son of Krypton.
Regrettably, I never knew the Last Daughter.
People of Earth, I stand for your judgement.
Lois kisses his metal cheek.
INT. LUTHOR'S HIDEOUT -- DAY.
Mercy sits 6 inches from the screen, like a little kid.
I love Lois Lane! She's my heroine!
(enjoys her adulation)
Mine too, Mercy, mine too.
INT. THE ULTRA-HUMANITE'S HIDEOUT -- DAY.
The battle-suit you requested is complete, Master.
But we understand little of its actual workings.
That's because it's from Krypton, Reynolds!
You do not need to understand it. Now, let us begin.
We must leave this Fortress before its owner returns.
It is lucky for us the fool stays away for months
at a time, helping those snivelling weaklings
in his beloved Metropolis! Go, and make preparations!
Henchman EXITS. Humanite glares at a SUPERMAN POSTER on the wall.
How soon you forget, Kal-El. How soon you forget
your oldest and most implacable foe. So Lex Luthor
is your worst enemy, is he? No one else is even in
2nd place? You will regret those words my friend.
The whole world will rue the day you said them!
As far as I'm concerned Lex Luthor is a
second-rate lab rat!
DISSOLVE through wall and pan away, over Humanite's maniacal laugh.
CRANE SHOT reveals THE ERADICATOR'S FORTRESS in Antarctica.
INT. PERRY WHITE'S OFFICE -- DAY.
Silver Age monster, I told Jimmy. I was wrong.
Golden Age monster. The Ultra-Humanite.
Jimmy strikes his forehead at how obvious it all was.
The Ultra-Humanite! Of course, The Ultra-
Humanite! Who else could it be but The Ultra-
Humanite? I just have one question, Chief ...
who's The Ultra-Humanite?
Olsen, you're giving me a headache.
Sorry about that, Chief.
Perry narrates his origin story, in a CARTOON SHORT.
(done in the Golden Age style of a Fleischer Brothers production.)
Once, he was a brilliant scientist, sadly trapped
in a wheelchair. His great mind snapped at his
inability to cure himself and he turned to crime,
organizing a vast ring of evil enterprises,
the largest and most extensive criminal underground
in Metropolis history, outfitting his men with
weapons of super-science designed from his chair
and built by others, including death-rays and
invisibility devices. He was defeated by Young Superman,
during his first year as a Metropolis crimefighter
20 years ago. This opened the door for Luthor,
who has been the local crimelord ever since.
But the Humanite's greatest power is his ability
to transfer his mighty mind into the bodies of others.
He has been underground for years, occasionally popping up
to bedevil the Man of Steel in various incarnations.
Men, women, old, young, black, white ... Nobody knows
how many people The Ultra-Humanite has been. Not even him!
At this point no-one has heard from the
Humanite since, in the form of an albino gorilla,
he chaired a crime syndicate called
The Secret Society of Super-Villains.
This was a few years ago, in what you kids
would call The Silver Age. It has been presumed
that the Humanite died in the Crisis. Until now.
What makes you so sure?
The statue. The one in that phoney Luthor's Lair.
It showed the Humanite in his true form.
Silver Age Luthor would have had a statue of
a gorilla, the only Humanite he ever knew.
I became suspicious shortly after I
interviewed Doomsday. He was feeble-minded.
Why would anyone genetically engineer
the ultimate monster but give him the
huge limitation of making him stupid?
Doomsday's brain must have been a temporary one,
to animate the tissue until the body was ready
to receive its permanent brain -- the brain of
the Ultra-Humanite. You can see now why
Superman stole the body.
Good God yes! Imagine if the Humanite
had gotten it back! Can you imagine
an intelligent Doomsday, armed with a death ray
and the power of invisibility?
We might as well give him the city!
Yes ... The only thing worse would be if he had
a Kryptonian battle-suit.
EXT. ANTARCTIC FORTRESS -- DAY.
Door opens, and Doomsday EXITS, wearing a KRYPTONIAN BATTLE-SUIT. He tests his RAY-GUN by melting a nearby ICEBERG.
CLOSE-UP as he smiles evilly.
Then he climbs aboard a huge SNOW-CAT VEHICLE and drives off. The snow-cat disappears, leaving only the continuing TRACKS of it's invisible presence as it heads to the harbour, where a depression in the water indicates the presence of an invisible submarine. Doomsday's maniacal laughter echoes through the barren wastes. Metropolis is in big trouble!
To be continued.
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