There are numerous scientists focused on studying the existence of alternate realities and how they interact with our own. This is called Multiverse theory and even famous scientists like Neil deGrasse Tyson and Stephen Hawking buy into the theory. But you know that if our scientists have thought of it, then comic book creators have covered the topic for a long time and have also taken liberties with it. Both Marvel and DC have presented audience with multiple universes for years and each one has presented radically different situations and characters for us to explore. One such character is beloved current Spider-Man from the Ultimate Universe (or Earth-1610), Miles Morales. He’s even poised to star in his own movie with December’s Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse.
After two excellent trailers, it’s fair to say that this movie has caught our attention. And now that it looks like we’re about to get a fantastic movie featuring an alternate version of one of the world’s most beloved superheroes, we began to ask the question: which other alternate versions of superheroes are ripe for their own movie? There are so many other characters with unique backstories or situations that would make them perfect candidates to headline their own movie or at least be featured in someone else’s. The Amalgam Universe provides endless interesting combinations to put on screen while Kingdom Come provides new looks at old superheroes. With those examples in mind, here’s a list of Alternate Versions of Superheroes We'd Love to See on Film.
16 THE ULTIMATES
The Ultimate Universe, or Earth-1610 is a universe that’s similar to the main (or Earth-616) continuity, but still markedly different. The Ultimate Universe where you get more serious and dark stories where the heroes are less idealistic beacons and more obviously flawed people trying to do the right thing. The Ultimates are Earth-1610’s counterparts to Earth-616’s Avengers and they’ve seen some stuff.
This more serious tone can result in more tense stories. And the early runs of the Ultimates comics were very well received by fans, so anyone who makes a movie of them would have plenty material to draw on. With a classic lineup of Hulk, Captain America, Iron Man, Ant-Man, and the Wasp, the Ultimates are ready for the big screen.
15 CRIME SYNDICATE OF AMERICA
There are several alternate universes where specific heroes became villainous or apathetic to humankind. But what if all the superheroes you knew and loved were villains instead? This would result in the Crime Syndicate of America. The CSA are the villainous Earth-3 counterparts to the Justice League. Ultraman (Superman), Owlman (Batman), Johnny Quick (The Flash), Superwoman (Wonder Woman), and Power Ring (Green Lantern) were the founding members and were the group that conquered the world.
Each one of these characters are similar enough to the JLA that you know how they should be, but different enough that they’d still be interesting while sharing the screen with them. They would provide fantastic battles and hold up a dark mirror for our favorite heroes to reflect.
14 SUPERMAN: RED SON
This may be the most nuanced example of the comic book trope where a heroic beacon for hope turns against his or her traditional values. Mark Millar wrote this Elseworlds comic that explored the question: what if Superman landed in the Soviet Union instead of Kansas?
Instead of Superman being a Soviet war machine though, he still truly wanted to help people and save the world, just behind a different set of beliefs. He was a champion of socialism and fought to expand the Soviet Union’s prosperity because he was raised to believe that was right. Meanwhile, Lex Luthor and Jimmy Olson opposed this at every turn for America. This is a classic Luthor vs Superman story that also served as an analogue to the Cold War.
13 LOBO THE DUCK
The Amalgam Universe was a very interesting event where DC and Marvel combined popular characters to make all new ones with aspects and histories of each respective character. This resulted in many creative characters such as Dark Claw (Batman and Wolverine) and Dr. Strangefate (Dr. Fate and Doctor Strange).
One of the most interesting characters to come from this was Lobo the Duck (Lobo and Howard the Duck) combining the most hardcore character of one universe with the most silly character from another is a recipe for hilarity. Combine that with Lobo the Duck’s strength and you have access to side-splitting humor and breathtaking action.
12 BATMAN AND THE OUTSIDERS
People have been clamoring to include the Outsiders for a while and with good reason. But this version hails from the Elseworlds story of Kingdom Come where the Justice League has disbanded and the lines between heroes and villains have blurred.
Superman eventually reforms the Justice League, but the League no longer able to convince these new, more brutal heroes, to become idealistic. While a superhero civil war threatens, Batman strategically recruits new heroes and a few old heroes like Green Arrow and Black Canary to become the Outsiders and counter the clumsy efforts of the Justice League. The Outsiders have a diverse powerset, a few familiar faces, and a unique mission -- they’d be perfect for a movie.
11 DOCTOR DOOM (HOUSE OF M)
Earth-616 Doctor Doom needs to be done correctly first before we can move on to alternate versions. But after that, the first alternate version that needs to be explored is the version from House of M, a world where mutants were the ruling class and humans are looked down upon.
In this reality, Reed Richards, Sue Storm, and John Jameson (who replaced Johnny Storm) are killed by the cosmic storm while Ben Grimm has his intelligence reduced. Then Doom who creates the superhero team the Fearsome Four consisting of himself, Grimm (The It), his wife Valeria (the Invincible Woman), and his son Kristoff (the Inhuman Torch). This reversal of the classic Fantastic Four with a more brutal leader in Doom would be very interesting to follow.
10 ALEXANDER LUTHOR JR.
As despicable as Earth-1 Lex Luthor has been, there are actually versions of him that can be considered heroic. On Earth-3 Luthor Jr. actually serves as Earth’s only hero and one line of defense against the evil Crime Syndicate of America.
Imagine what a heroic Lex Luthor could do for the world. Now imagine seeing Lex Luthor in a movie fighting on the side of good. Most of the time, you see the heroes doing their best to stop Lex’s schemes, but in this case, you’d get to see the always-determined Luthor develop plans to protect the world.
9 WONDER WOMAN (FLASHPOINT)
Wonder Woman may just be DC’s fiercest warrior and that was never put on display as prominently as her portrayal in 2011’s Flashpoint. This story saw the Flash go back in time and save his mother which caused a ripple effect across the DC universe.
In this timeline, Wonder Woman and Aquaman are at war with one another, each leading the Amazonians and Atlanteans respectively into a war that spanned much of the Earth. Seeing someone as powerful as Diana in full out war mode and leading an army is sure to be a breathtaking sight. Plus her capacity for compassion much more limited in this timeline than in the main timeline, providing a look at a different, darker, Diana.
8 DAMIAN WAYNE (INJUSTICE)
Damian Wayne is already a complex and generally well-liked character. He’s in a constant battle to balance his ruthless nature and the lessons that his father has preached to him. But Damian’s different moral fiber can make him unpredictable, as it does during the Injustice series.
In the Injustice universe, Damian combats his father as a member of Superman’s regime. This transformation is simultaneously compelling, hard to watch, and can all be traced back to one instance: Damian accidentally ending Dick Grayson in a fit of anger. Batman’s grief at losing Dick is palpable, while Damian’s feelings of grief and bitterness as he’s driven from the family provides a compelling, emotional narrative ready to be used in a movie.
7 OLD MAN HAWKEYE
The "Old Man Logan" storyline was a bleak 2008 storyline that explored what would happen if the bad guys won. In this universe, the heroes were defeated and the villains turned the Earth into a lawless wasteland. While Logan decided to embrace pacifism in his old age, Hawkeye continued to battle against evil even as his hair began to turn white.
However, it’s not only Hawkeye’s old age and unwavering fight that makes him an interesting candidate for a movie -- it’s also the fact that he is blind in this universe. Hawkeye’s eyesight was his most vital attribute. Seeing him continue to fight crime without would certainly make for compelling cinema and would make his action scenes more unique and harrowing as well.
6 ULTIMATE VENOM
Venom is already a compelling Venom in his own right -- he’s varied between villain and anti-hero and the symbiote’s connection with Spider-Man makes it a personal fight. Venom in the Ultimate Universe takes it a step further. This Venom isn’t an alien but is instead a biological suit that Peter’s father created to cure cancer.
But instead, the suit grants its wearer superhuman powers while also feeding on them which, in turn, forces them to consume biomass, namely other people. On top of that, Eddie Brock in this universe was Peter’s best friend during his childhood and their fathers worked together on that very project. A movie featuring this Venom would absolutely be brutal, emotional, and amazing.
5 THE BATMAN WHO LAUGHS
This may be the best new character to be introduced into the DC Universe since Damian Wayne back in 2006. The Batman Who Laughs is what you get when you combine Batman and the Joker -- the concept is gold. He was created on (dark) Earth-22 when he was exposed to a purified version of the chemicals that transformed to Joker, which eventually resulted in a Batman (with a sick character design) who had all of Bruce’s intelligence with the Joker’s lack of morality.
Watching our hero descend to the same depths of his greatest enemy would make for a powerful moment. And watching the Batman Who Laughs take over the world in his own unique way would be so interesting to see.
4 NIGHTCRAWLER (AGE OF APOCALYPSE)
Nightcrawler’s ability to teleport could be used in a far more brutal manner if he wasn’t inhibited by his nature. If you were curious to see what an uninhibited Nightcrawler would be like, look no further than the Nightcrawler from the "Age of Apocalypse" storyline. This Nightcrawler is a much darker version of the character who hates churches and is not afraid to take a life.
Age of Apocalypse Nightcrawler has displayed his brutality numerous times. He has ended a man by teleporting only his head away and even put down the Blob by teleporting a shark inside of him. On top of that, he carries around two sabers wherever he goes. It would be so interesting to see the full might of this Nightcrawler on the big screen.
3 ALAN SCOTT
Everybody knows the story of Green Lantern. He’s a man who wields a ring powered by willpower that can create green solid light constructs and he uses this ability to protect Earth and battle powerful foes in space with the help of an intergalactic military made up of similar individuals. But this isn’t the only Green Lantern, or even the original one.
Alan Scott was the first Green Lantern, who made his debut in 1940. His abilities have varied over the years but generally derive from the mystical Starheart. He has similar abilities to the Green Lantern Corps but also can manipulate magic, phase through objects, and other mystical abilities. He’d be interesting to put on screen because his weakness to wood is more easily exploitable than the color yellow.
Who doesn’t want to see a Hulk that took over the world? The Maestro is a version of the Incredible Hulk from the future that rules over the wasteland that has become Earth. In this future, a nuclear war has ended most life on the planet and killed most of the Earth’s superhumans. However the Hulk survived and has greatly increased in strength by absorbing the radiation left over by the world. Oh, and this Hulk also has Banner’s intelligence.
Imagine just how big of a threat Maestro would pose. He’s stronger than Hulk and also possesses Banner’s intelligence. He’d make for a fantastic villain, both powerful and intelligent. Plus seeing how the Hulk would rule the world sounds like an interesting wrinkle as well.
1 DEATHSTROKE (JOURNEY'S END)
Have you ever wondered what a zombie apocalypse movie would look like if it starred Deathstroke? Well you don’t have to wonder. Just read Deathstroke the Terminator Annual Vol 1 #3. In this story, humanity has essentially been wiped out by a race of beings they created called the Genetix. In this desolate wasteland, Deathstroke is one of the few humans left alive and he’s determined to hunt the Genetix down.
This has so much potential. Deathstroke is a fan favorite character with incredible weapons, skills, and tactics. And he’s not oversaturated either. This also shows him in a more heroic light as he discovers a band of humans and defends them with his everything he has.