Black Adam’s first full-length trailer is now out. After months of anticipation, it finally gave us our first glimpse at Dwayne Johnson as the eponymous DC character. And it’s as dark as it gets. The film, directed by Jaume Collet-Serra and starring Zachary Levi, is a spin-off of Shazam!
The appearance of the Justice Society of America in the trailer makes sense, given Black Adam was a JSA member in the books. The DC link, which most people would assume, is notably absent from the trailer.
Is Black Adam really copying Sony’s Venom?
Shazam, whether the wizard himself or the original Captain Marvel, is neither seen nor addressed in the Black Adam trailer. That’s curiously similar to the Sony Venom movies, which were forced to eliminate the character’s Spider-Man link. This lack of connection to the picture it technically spins off from is a wasted promise for Black Adam, and it’s a bizarre narrative decision.
In the comics, Black Adam started out as a villain for Captain Marvel, with similar powers and abilities to him. These came from the wizard Shazam, who bestowed powers on Black Adam based on Egyptian gods. However, neither Shazam nor Billy Batson appears in the Black Adam trailer, with the latter making some sense. It would be early to cast Billy and his superheroic abilities in a big part in the first Black Adam film, but the wizard must have been in the trailer.
Because there was no Spider-Man in the original Venom film, the background of how Eddie Brock met the eponymous symbiote had to be changed. In reality, the identity of the Sony Spider-Man has yet to be revealed. This was mostly owing to issues with the Peter Parker character, as Marvel Studios had already used their own version of him by the time Venom was released. So far, Black Adam has behaved similarly to Shazam! in terms of the title character’s link to the franchise from which he spins off, but it’s not like Shazam! has any rights issues.
Black Adam arrives in theaters on October 21, 2022.
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