Superman: God Complex (22 Pages)

A Superman comic script I wrote, in which people are so grateful for Superman saving them they form a religion, making things…complicated. In this script Clark and Lois are married. Not sure if that fits in continuity anymore, but I suppose it doesn’t matter since this isn’t getting made anytime soon.

Superman and all related characters © DC Comics

New Characters:

Michael Hollings: A business executive in his early fifties, hair gone mostly grey but still intact. He is still physically fit, and quite handsome and charismatic, with a Bruce Campbell chin and wide smile.

Nathan: A thin man in his mid-twenties. Wavy blond hair and blue eyes, he is a very passionate and intense about what he believes in.

Karla: An attractive woman in her mid-twenties, with long curly red hair tied back in a pony-tail. Wears glasses.

Jake: Tall thin black man with short hair, early twenties.


PAGE 1: (4 Panels)

PANEL 1. At a helipad on the top of a large skyscraper in downtown Metropolis, Michael Hollings runs toward the helicopter which is already beginning to power up. On the side of the helicopter is the name “MetBank.” Hollings is wearing an immaculately tailored suit that screams of money.

CAPTION:
On the roof of MetBank corporate headquarters…

PANEL 2. Hollings, stressed, climbs into the helicopter holding a briefcase.

HOLLINGS:
Yes, I know I’m late!

PANEL 3. The helicopter takes off.

SFX:
Whir

PANEL 4. Cockpit of the helicopter. Hollings is buckling his seatbelt. The pilot looks down and pulls at one of the controls, suddenly concerned.

HOLLINGS:
Well this deal is worth billions so…

PILOT:
What the…


PAGE 2: (5 Panels)

PANEL 1. Sparks fly out of the tail of the helicopter.

SFX:
Boom at the tail of the helicopter.

PANEL 2. Cockpit of the helicopter, where Hollings and the Pilot thrown to the side by the centripetal force. Hollings panics, as the Pilot wrestles with the controls while an alarm sounds.

HOLLINGS:
What’s happening?!

PILOT:
Hang on, I’ll try to…

SFX:
Beep! Beep!

PANEL 3. Cockpit. Hollings and Pilot suddenly lurch back as the copter stops spinning.

SFX:
Thump!

PANEL 4. Exterior of the helicopter. Hollings looks out the window, and gasps with surprise.

NO DIALOGUE

PANEL 5. Superman has grabbed onto the tail of the helicopter. The sun is behind his head, obscuring his face and giving him a “halo.”

NO DIALOGUE


PAGE 3: (5 Panels)

PANEL 1. Superman sets the helicopter back down on the helipad.

NO DIALOGUE

PANEL 2. Hollings jumps out of the cockpit, exhilarated.

HOLLINGS:
You…you saved us!

PANEL 3. Superman hovers above, smiling down at them.

SUPERMAN:
I do what I can.

PANEL 4. Superman flies off, as Hollings and the pilot look on.

NO DIALOGUE

PANEL 5. A close up of Hollings face, which lights up with a sudden epiphany.

HOLLINGS:
He does what he can!


PAGE 4: (5 Panels)

PANEL 1. Clark Kent is sitting at his desk at the Daily Planet, working on his latest story.  He is holding a cup of coffee, preparing to take a drink.

CAPTION:
Two weeks later, at The Daily Planet…

PANEL 2. Jimmy Olsen bursts in behind him, shaking his shoulder excitedly causing Clark to drop his coffee onto his desk.

OLSEN:
Clark! C.K! You gotta come see this!

PANEL 3. Clark is gesturing back to his desk as Olsen drags him down a hallway.

CLARK:
Jimmy, I have…

OLSEN:
Come on, it’s about to start!

PANEL 4. Jimmy and Clark enter a conference room. Lois Lane and a few other reports are standing before a table. Lois looks at Clark, holding out a TV remote and pressing a button.

CLARK:
Lois? What’s this all about?

LOIS:
Someone just sent us a video press release. I think you’ll want to see this.

SFX:
Click

PANEL 5. On the opposite side of a conference room sits a large tv. Hollings’s face appears with a wide and beaming smile.

NO DIALOGUE


PAGE 5: (5 Panels)

Panel 1. Hollings stands in front of a burgundy curtain, wearing a light grey suit with no tie.

HOLLINGS:
Hello, my friends. My name is Michael Hollings. Last week, I was in a helicopter accident.

PANEL 2. Hollings sighs, looking almost wistful

Hollings:
I’ve never been a very spiritual man. I could never believe in things I can’t see.

PANEL 3. Close up of Hollings, suddenly looking serious.

HOLLINGS:
But when the helicopter started to go down, I found myself asking if there is a God.

PANEL 4. Hollings smiles, and gestures as the curtain behind him is drawn.

HOLLINGS:
And I received an answer—

PANEL 5. The curtain is drawn back to reveal a large mural of Superman, with a sun-halo effect like page 2 panel 5.

HOLLINGS (OFF PANEL):
—yes, there is!


PAGE 6: (6 Panels)

PANEL 1. Hollings stands behind a wooden pulpit. The Superman symbol has been carved into the front of the pulpit, and behind Hollings is a red drape with the symbol on either side of him.

HOLLINGS:
People everywhere pray to gods that never answer. And when disaster strikes, who shows up to save them? Those silent, absent gods?

PANEL 2. Hollings leans over the pulpit with an intense expression, pointing his finger dramatically.

HOLLINGS:
No, my friends it is Superman! He is the true savior of mankind, and only He is worthy of such devotion!

PANEL 3. Hollings holds his palms out, smiling.

HOLLINGS:
Just listen those who have learned the Truth.

PANEL 4. A chubby, matronly woman in her late forties sits in a chair in front of the Superman mural on the previous page. She is on the verge of crying with happiness.

MOTHER:
When my little Zoe lost her ball and ran after it into traffic, I cried out for a miracle. In a red and blue flash, my girl was by my side with her ball in hand.

PANEL 5. A married couple in their late twenties side by side, also in front of the Superman mural. They are holding each other’s hands and beaming. The wife is about six months pregnant.

HUSBAND:
Two months ago, the bank I worked in got robbed. I didn’t know if I would ever meet my son! Then Superman appeared, snatched all their guns away, and froze the robbers with his ice breath.

WIFE:
Thank you, Superman!

PANEL 6. Nathan now sits in front of the mural.

NATHAN:
I remember when that giant alien robot was destroying the city. No matter how many missiles or laser blasts Superman took, he kept on fighting until beat him! We’re with you, Superman!


PAGE 7: (5 Panels)

PANEL 1. Hollings stands behind the pulpit, now holding a red cape.

HOLLINGS:
My friends, I hereby extend an open invitation to accept the True Identity of Superman!

PANEL 2. The exterior of an old church, only the Superman symbol has been painted over the doors.

HOLLINGS (OFF PANEL):
Those who reach the same epiphany can join us at our new Super-Center, for our grand opening in three weeks!

PANEL 3. Hollings is once again standing before the Superman mural, only he now wears the red cape with the suit.

HOLLINGS:
Thank you, and may Superman be with you!

PANEL 4. Back in the Daily Planet conference room, same shot as page 4 panel 5, only the tv gives a small flash after being turned off.

SFX:
Tv clicks off.

PANEL 5. On the other side of the conference room, Jimmy Olsen grins excitedly. Clark has his mouth open in disbelief, and Lois glances at Clark with a raised eyebrow.
hr>
PAGE 8: (4 Panels)

PANEL 1. Inside we can see the interior of the former church which is undergoing major renovations, with half the pews taken out and scaffolding along the walls. Painters, contractors, and other workers are everywhere—all wearing red capes with their coveralls and hard hats.

CAPTION:
The next day, at the soon to open Super-Center…

PANEL 2. Hollings and one of the contractors are standing over a table covered in blueprints, discussing the plans. Hollings is wearing a tan suit with no tie, and a red cape.

CONTRACTOR:
…so if we put the daycare center here, that will free up some space for…

NATHAN (OFF PANEL):
Mr Hollings! Mr Hollings!

PANEL 3. Hollings turns around, with a slight smile, as Nathan excitedly runs up to him. Nathan is wearing a blue polo shirt and khaki pants with a red cape.

HOLLINGS:
Nathan, please! Call me…

NATHAN:
He’s here!

HOLLINGS:
Who?

PANEL 4: Hollings gives a look of sudden realization while Nathan nods excitedly.

NO DIALOGUE

hr>
PAGE 9: (5 Panels)

PANEL 1. Two side doors to the Super-Center slam open. Hollings and Nathan run out excitedly

SFX:
Slam

PANEL 2. Superman is standing in the middle of a small courtyard beside the Super-Center.  Surrounding him is a small crowd, all of whom are wearing red capes with regular outfits and looking at him in awe. Superman gives a half-hearted wave, visibly uncomfortable.

NO DIALOGUE

PANEL 3. Hollings runs up to Superman, with Nathan right behind him. Nathan is deliberately looking down, with his hands blocking his eyes. Superman smiles and extends his hand in greeting.

SUPERMAN:
Hello again, Mr. Hollings. I was hoping to…

PANEL 4. Hollings kneels down before Superman, grasping Superman’s outstretched hands in his and looking up in reverence. Superman looks down now smiling rather nervously.

SUPERMAN:
…to…talk to…

HOLLINGS:
You have come! Just as I prayed you would!

PANEL 5. Superman pulls his hand back as Hollings stands up.

SUPERMAN:
Yes, well…

HOLLINGS:
The Super-Center is nearly ready, and soon it will be full of your followers. Does it please you?

SUPERMAN:
Actually…no.


PAGE 10: (6 Panels)

PANEL 1. Hollings, Nathan, and some followers wearing red capes in the background stand crestfallen at Superman’s answer. Nathan is now deliberately looking to one side.

NO DIALOGUE

PANEL 2. Superman holds up his hands, speaking hastily.

SUPERMAN:
Don’t get me wrong, this is all very…

SUPERMAN:
…flattering…

PANEL 3. Same frame as the last panel. Superman adopts a firm expression on his face.

SUPERMAN:
…but it has to stop. I am not a god, and I will not be worshipped like one.

PANEL 4. Two of Superman’s followers step forward from the crowd with bewildered expressions.

FOLLOWER 1:
But your incredible strength!

FOLLOWER 2:
And you can fly!

PANEL 5. The crowd of Superman’s followers are talking with each other. Above them speech balloons list Superman’s powers alone without connecting to one particular person.

BALLOON 1:
Super speed!

BALLOON 2:
X-Ray vision!

BALLOON 3:
Heat vision!

BALLOON 4:
And ice breath! Don’t forget ice breath!

BALLOON 5:
Super Weaving!

PANEL 6. Superman sighs, but keeps his patience.

SUPERMAN:
I have special abilities, yes. But that’s all they are. They don’t make me any more important than anyone else.


PAGE 11: (6 Panels)

PANEL 1. Nathan steps forward, his eyes still cast down.

NATHAN:
Forgive me Superman, but you are!

PANEL 2. Superman looks at Nathan, puzzled.

SUPERMAN:
What are you doing?

NATHAN:
I’m averting my eyes, Superman.

SUPERMAN:
Oh. Well…stop it.

PANEL 3. Close up of Nathan, who looks up and speaks with the intense passion of a true believer.

NATHAN:
You have chosen to use all your awesome powers to protect us, even those who are not worthy! That makes you our Savior, and we are ready to fight for you!

NATHAN:
Just say the word and we will do it, even if it means our deaths!

PANEL 4. Superman puts his foot down, still calm, but stern.

SUPERMAN:
I’ll do no such thing!

SUPERMAN:
I don’t save people to be worshipped. I save them only I can and it’s the right thing to do! I am not a god, and the last thing I want is a martyr!

PANEL 5. Hollings and the crowd look stunned, unsure of how to react.

NO DIALOGUE

PANEL 6. Hollings shouts happily, as the crowd puts their hands in the air.

HOLLINGS:
Only our true Savior would have such power and deny His divinity! Hail Superman!

CROWD:
Hail Superman!


PAGE 12: (5 Panels)

PANEL 1. Clark and Lois are in the kitchen of their apartment fixing dinner. The kitchen has two counters, so that Clark and Lois have their backs to each other. On Clark’s counter is a chicken in a roast pan and various seasoning shakers, with Clark currently using pepper on the chicken. Lois is at the other counter preparing a salad. Clark is still fuming, while Lois gives an amused smile.

CAPTION:
That evening, at the Kent residence…

CLARK:
…and after that the conversation just went in circles.

LOIS:
Sorry I missed it.

PANEL 2. Clark picks up the paprika, preparing to use it.

CLARK:
I finally left after they asked if I had any commandments.

PANEL 3. Lois grins, tossing the salad.

LOIS:
You could have asked them to pick up our dry-cleaning.

PANEL 4. Clark crushes the shaker in his hand, causing a cloud of paprika to fall on the chicken.

CLARK:
It’s not funny, Lois!

SFX:
Poof

PANEL 5. Switch the view so see the front of Clark sighing over the paprika-covered chicken. To his side, Lois has turned around, surprised by his sudden forcefulness.

NO DIALOGUE


PAGE 13: (5 Panels)

PANEL 1. Clark turns to look at Lois, with an earnest expression.

CLARK:
The don’t just want me to save them—

PANEL 2. An image of Darkseid’s throne room on Apokolips, with flames shooting on all sides. Standing before the throne is Superman, wearing Darkseid’s clothes with a black and white Superman logo on the chest. Darkseid-Superman has his arms out, one hand clenched in a fist, as he gives a maniacal grin.

CAPTION (SUPERMAN):
—they want me to dominate them!

PANEL 3. Back in their apartment, Clark leans back against the counter, with a determined look.

CLARK:
I won’t use my powers that way. With my great power comes…

PANEL 4. Close up of Clark looking solemn.

CLARK:
…a great need not to misuse that power!

PANEL 5. Clark looks at Lois as she puts her hand on his shoulder, smiling.

NO DIALOGUE


PAGE 14: (6 Panels)

PANEL 1. A large panel of Clark and Lois kissing passionately.

NO DIALOGUE

PANEL 2. Lois pulls away from Clark slightly, though his arms are still around her.

LOIS:
You’re right, Clark. I’m sorry.

PANEL 3. Clark starts brushing the paprika off the chicken. Lois leans against the other counter, pondering.

CLARK:
So what should I do?

LOIS:
The thing is Clark, I don’t think there’s anything you can do.

PANEL 4. Lois, still leaning against the counter, contemplative.

LOIS:
From what you’ve said, I doubt anything you say or do will stop them.

PANEL 5. Clark turns around in disbelief, while Lois holds up a hand to reassure him.

CLARK:
So what, I should become their god?

LOIS:
No! You can’t encourage this.

LOIS:
Tomorrow we’ll print Superman’s statement denying all ties to them.

PANEL 6. Lois shrugs her shoulders.

LOIS:
But if that doesn’t stop them…

LOIS:
…we’ll just have to wait and see.


PAGE 15: (6 Panels)

PANEL 1. Lois gives a reassuring smile.

LOIS:
Besides, it’s not all bad.

PANEL 2. Clark is at the sink, washing the paprika off his hands. Lois stands behind him.

CLARK:
How?

LOIS:
Well, just look at Hollings! Two months ago he was another corporate shark, and now he’s dedicated his life fortune to charity.

PANEL 3. While Clark is at the sink, Lois wraps her arms around his chest and whispers in his ear. Clark gives a relenting smile.

LOIS:
He’s financing three new homeless shelters, and it’s all because of you!

PANEL 4. Stepping away from the sink, Clark removes his glasses. Lois moves back to her counter and picks up the salad.

CLARK:
Yes, but…

LOIS:
Give them a chance, Clark. Maybe they’ll surprise you.

PANEL 5. Clark picks up the roast pan with a contemplative look. His glasses are on the counter.

NO DIALOGUE

PANEL 6. Clark looks down and uses his heat vision to cook the chicken, holding the roast pan in his hands. The chicken sizzles.

SFX:
Szzz


PAGE 16: (4 Panels)

PANEL 1. Superman flies through the skies of Metropolis, a triumphant smile on his face.

CAPTION:
Two weeks later, in the skies of Metropolis…

PANEL 2. Superman suddenly looks down in a particular direction, having heard someone crying for help with his super-hearing.

CRY:
Help! Help please!

PANEL 3. Karla is gripping the ledge of the balcony to her apartment, her fingers suddenly slipping as she begins to fall.

KARLA (SCREAMING):
AAAAAAH!

PANEL 4. Superman catches Karla as she falls, with blur marks indicating he just made it with his super speed. Superman gives a reassuring smile.

SUPERMAN:
Don’t worry, I’ve got you.


PAGE 17: (5 Panels)

PANEL 1. Superman, carrying the Karla, floats onto the balcony as the Karla looks at him in awe.

SUPERMAN:
Just be a little more careful next time.

KARLA:
Thank you, Superman!

PANEL 2. Superman lands on the balcony and helps the Karla down. Superman looks surprised.

KARLA:
You truly are the Savior of us all!

SUPERMAN:
What?

PANEL 3. Close up on Superman, rolling his eyes.

SUPERMAN:
No, I’m not “the Savior,” I’m…

PANEL 4. Shot of Superman’s front as he stumbles forward slightly, weakened.

SUPERMAN:
…I’m…I’m…

SUPERMAN:
…uhhh…

PANEL 5. Superman falls to the floor, revealing Nathan and Jake standing behind him. Nathan is holding up a piece of kryptonite in his hands with a stern expression. Both of them are wearing red capes over their normal clothes.

NATHAN:
Get him inside.

SFX:
Thud


PAGE 18: (5 Panels)

PANEL 1. Inside the empty apartment, Jake drags Superman across the floor while Nathan holds the kryptonite over him. On the floor sits what appears to be a box made of lead, with the lid open on one side and an electronic device with a green light on top. Superman looks up, weakly.

NATHAN:
You can’t know how much this hurts me, Superman.

PANEL 2. Nathan still holding the kryptonite, looks up slightly as if lost in thought.

NATHAN:
But what you said made me realize something.

PANEL 3. Nathan kneels down, places the kryptonite in the open box . Superman struggles to respond.

NATHAN:
Your greatest power is your purity of spirit. It is what makes you so worthy.

NATHAN:
But it is also your greatest weakness. It keeps you from taking your rightful place as our One True God.

SUPERMAN:
Uhh…

PANEL 4. Nathan smiles and tenderly strokes Superman’s cheek. Superman squirms.

NATHAN:
That is why you need us to fight when your purity stops you. We will fight the battles you cannot, just as you do for us!

NATHAN:
We will prove ourselves worthy of you.

PANEL 5. Nathan, Karla and Jake stand outside an open doorway, all smiling in eager anticipation. In the door, we see Superman feebly raising a hand.

NATHAN:
Let’s go.

NATHAN:
And may Superman be with us!


PAGE 19: (6 Panels)

PANEL 1. Nathan, Karla, and Jake are walking along a busy sidewalk in downtown Metropolis. All three are wearing large overcoats obscuring all other clothes and calm, neutral expressions.

NO DIALOGUE

PANEL 2. Nathan and Karla are standing a line of people just inside an office building, with Jake closing the door behind them. At the front of the line is a metal detector, which a security guard is directing people through.

NO DIALOGUE

PANEL 3. Karla, Nathan, and Jake stand in the middle of a large foyer, as people in business attire walk around importantly. The three of them are all staring at something.

NO DIALOGUE

PANEL 4. Cut to what they were staring at—on the opposite wall is a picture of Lex Luthor, next to a giant “LEXCORP” logo.

NO DIALOGUE

PANEL 5. A close up of Nathan’s chest. Nathan is grabbing the two sides of his coat, preparing to rip it open.

NO DIALOGUE

PANEL 6. Same close up, only Nathan has ripped open his coat, revealing the Superman Symbol (ala the classic Superman change sequence)

NO DIALOGUE


PAGE 20: ( Panels)

PANEL 1. As their coats fall to the floor behind them, we see Karla, Nathan, and Jake are wearing blue Superman t-shirts and red pants. Karla and Jake are now brandishing assault rifles and shooting them in the air. Nathan is wearing a vest containing bricks of C4 and various wires. Nathan is shouting.

NATHAN (BURSTING):
On the ground now!

SFX:
Bang Bang!

CROWD (OFF PANEL):
Aaaagh!

PANEL 2. Superman, still writhing on the floor, follows what’s going on with his super-hearing in horror.

BALLOON 1:
We said on the ground!

BALLOON 2:
Please, I…

SFX:
Bang!

PANEL 3. A security camera mounted on the ceiling of the foyer rotates and zooms in, capturing the scene below.

NATHAN:
Let everyone hear me, and know the Truth!

SFX:
Whirr


PAGE 21: (4 Panels)

PANEL 1. Close up of Nathan on a security monitor. He is holding up the detonator to his vest.

NATHAN:
Those who stand against Superman must die!

PANEL 2. Nathan closes his eyes and smiles serenely as he presses the button on the detonator.

NATHAN (WHISPER):
All for you, Superman!

SFX:
Click

PANEL 3. Back in the apartment, the device on the lead box beeps, the light shines red and the lid of the box closes, covering the kryptonite. Superman starts getting up

SFX:
Beep

SFX (LID):
Thunk!

PANEL 4. The exterior of the building entrance explodes, erupting in flames and knocking over all nearby pedestrians.

SFX:
Boom


PAGE 22: (3 Panels)

PANEL 1. Superman comes to a sudden stop, hovering in mid-air looking down. Blur lines indicate he was moving at super speed. Superman has an expression of abject horror.

NO DIALOGUE

PANEL 2. Close up of Superman’s face, truly capturing his shock. His mouth has dropped open, and his eyes are almost at the point of tears.

NO DIALOGUE

PANEL 3. Large panel. At the top center, we see the back of Superman hovering in mid-air, cape blowing slightly as he looks down. Below him, black smoke billows out of the destroyed office entrance, and on the street are dozens of isolated fires. If possible, also show people (without too much detail) running around in panic, and others just lying in the street.

NO DIALOGUE

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