Comic book legend Alex Ross has shared some stunning Justice League art that unites classic DC heroes from yesteryear. Taking to Twitter, the Eisner-award winner shared an image that features Christopher Reeves' Superman, Michael Keaton's Batman, Lynda Carter's Wonder Woman and John Wesley Shipp's The Flash. The image imagines a world that can't possibly exist, but it's hard for fans not to wonder what perhaps could have been in an alternate universe.
The live-action Justice League we ultimately got was released 2017. Directed by Zack Snyder, it sees the DCEU versions of these characters uniting to take on Steppenwolf. Ben Affleck's Batman, Henry Cavill's Superman, Gal Gadot's Wonder Woman and Ezra Miller's The Flash. Their team also includes Jason Momoa's Aquaman and Ray Fisher's Cyborg.
There were no classic live-action DC equivalents for those characters for Alex Ross to incorporate in his artwork. As fans are surely aware, Justice League didn't go over as planned and wasn't received particularly well by fans or critics, in addition to underperforming at the box office. Calls to release the Snyder Cut, Snyder's original vision for the movie, have been rampant ever since.
But this image opens the door for questions that have no answers. What would a classic Justice League movie have looked like in a universe where this lineup would have been possible? Christopher Reeve played the Man of Steel in four movies, starting with the iconic 1978 Superman, directed by Richard Donner. Lynda Carter starred on Wonder Woman, which aired for three seasons starting in 1975. Michael Keaton was under the cape and cowl for Tim Burton's Batman and its sequel, Batman Returns. John Wesley Shipp, meanwhile, starred as Barry Allen on the short-lived The Flash TV series which aired in 1990 for just one season.
Christopher Reeve suffered a life-altering injury after being thrown from a horse in 1995, which confined him to a wheelchair for the remainder of his life. Reeve passed away in 2004. Michael Keaton has, more recently, appeared in the Marvel Cinematic Universe in Spider-Man: Homecoming as Vulture, but hasn't reprised the role of Batman since 1992. Lynda Carter did appear on Supergirl in several episodes as President Olivia Marsdin. John Wesley Shipp returned as Flash, albeit the Jay Garrick version of the character, in the Elseworlds and Crisis on Infinite Earths crossovers in CW's Arrowverse.
On paper, it seems these various versions of DC's beloved heroes might have worked quite well together. There is seemingly a small window of time, perhaps in the early 90s, where a Justice League project like the one depicted in this artwork, might have worked. Even though we will never see something like it come to fruition, the art serves as a loving tribute to the actors who helped pave the way for the modern age of comic book adaptations. Be sure to check out the image from Alex Ross' Twitter account for yourself.