Due out today:
The Legends of the Super Heroes DVD from Warner Archives, the made-on-demand online DVD shop for films and TV shows that, for whatever reason, couldn’t swing a general retail DVD release.
Now, I haven’t seen these two specials (“The Challenge” – our heroes versus the Legion of Doom, and “The Roast” – a celebrity roast hosted by Ed McMahon) since they originally aired in the late ’70s, but I recall, as an eleven-year-old Mikester, enjoying them, cheesy as they were. Here’s a taste:
BONUS: Comedian Jeff Altman pops up as Flash villain the Weather Wizard at the end of the clip.
Yeah, it’s really heavy on the camp, but whereas the comedic aspects of the similar ’60s Batman TV show were more knowing and self-aware and amusing, I suspect the out-and-out farce of Legends may be hard to take for those of us who still hold out a little hope for some remaining dignity for our four-color friends who wear tights and fly around and punch each other. I mean, I don’t know…like I said, I haven’t seen these in decades, so I can’t tell if the awkward half-assedness of the proceedings would ultimately result in being sort of entertainingly charming or simply unbearable. A mix of both, I’m presuming.
But still…Jeff Altman as the Weather Wizard! Okay, I don’t know why I’m fixated on that, but I am. What can I say, I like Jeff Altman. And Night Court‘s Marsha Warfield apparently appears in there, somewhere. And it’s the only live action versions of some of these characters, like Legion of Super-Heroes baddie Mordru, and Captain Marvel’s nemesis Sivana. And then there’s Ghetto Man, which…yeah, I know, but he comes out and rips on the heroes with a short bit of stand-up which, watching it just now via the YouTube, actually has a couple of pretty good superhero jokes in there…plus, he and Batman totally hip-bump as he’s coming onstage, and that’s awesome.
So anyway, Legends of the Super Heroes…it’s now officially out there in non-bootleg form for anyone who dares to watch it. Not sure if I’ll get it, myself…but I suppose nostalgic curiosity will eventually win out. If nothing else, it’s an interesting artifact of the time. Plus, it features Jeff Altman. Have I mentioned that?