The first Robot Chicken DC Comics Special just hit DVD and Blu-ray, and along with an epic battle between the Justice League and the Legion of Doom (with Aquaman at its center), you get two hours of extras that include a making-of featurette, cast and crew commentaries, outtakes, deleted sketches, and a tour of DC Entertainment led by Chief Creative Officer Geoff Johns.
Robot Chicken co-creator Seth Green, who directed the special, chats with us below. Look for scoop on the second DC Comics Special, which starts lensing next month, in the issue of Entertainment Weekly on stands July 19, the same day as Robot Chicken’s Comic-Con panel (Indigo Room at Hilton Bayfront, 3:15 p.m.).
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: There’s a lot of talk in the commentary about Batman’s briefs in the first special. Will they be fixed for the second?
SETH GREEN: Yes, I’m gonna fix those pants for the second special. That was really hard to take in the first one. [Laughs] I didn’t realize it until we had it cut together and it was too late. There was no going back. He had these incredibly bizarre high-waisted, French-cut panties. I just don’t know how that slipped through.
You say on the DVD that you spent, like, 15 minutes trying to find the right sound for Two-Face (voiced by Neil Patrick Harris) pulling up his pants in the bathroom.
I love sound. Sound is such an extra detail, and it’s a very subtle thing, and it’s something purely subliminal, and you barely ever get to consciously consider what it does to you as an audience. But when you’re in a position of creating the sound that defines a moment, I take extra care because it’s everything. It’s the difference between a laugh and no laugh. It’s the difference between an emotion or a different emotion. But I’m meticulous about everything. What did my producer call me … Captain Control or something silly like that. [Laughs] I’d like to think that I’m a team player, but when I’m tasked with delivering something visually, I do take great pains to make it just so.
You also mention in the commentary how hard you worked to frame the head of Clark Kent (voiced by Breckin Meyer) with a clock behind him, so you got a halo effect for Superman’s Christ Complex. That’s serendipitous timing considering the Christian imagery discussion surrounding Man of Steel.
Isn’t that funny? That’s a common interpretation when you have a character from another planet that falls from the heavens as the de facto savior of humanity. You’re gonna get Christ comparisons. Jesus was the most popular guy in that role. If this was Shakespeare, he would be the guy who definitely set the bar for that role.
[Massive Man of Steel spoiler alert!] In season 7 of Robot Chicken, could we see your take on how Superman finished General Zod in the film?
I think the stuff that most people were concerned with about Man of Steel was not the stuff we think about. We rarely say, “Is it morally ethical for Superman to snap General Zod’s neck?” We’ll make the comment about, like, “Why didn’t he just cover Zod’s eyes with his hand?” [Laughs] Rob Bricken wrote an article where he was like, “Why don’t you just turn his head? And if turning his head is holding the lasers away from those people, why doesn’t Zod just angle his eyes differently?” Like, we ask the real basic questions. We don’t ask the ethical quandaries that the theologists are considering. [Laughs] Like, we just want to know, “Does he have underwear on under the underwear?”
Last question: The tour you and your RC co-creator Matthew Senreich take of DC Entertainment with Geoff Johns involves a visit to the giveaway room. What is the coolest thing you’ve taken home from there, and how do you know if you’re asking for too much?
Because it’s a licensing stock room, it means that things are in there whether or not they’ve been mass-manufactured. So there’s a lot of proposals by different T-shirt companies for DC characters or DC character logos printed on materials that you’d never see, in colors that you’d never see, with designs that you’d never see. So I’ve grabbed a couple of those shirts for [my wife] Clare when I’ve been there, and those get the best reaction. She’s thrilled to have it, and whenever she wears it, people are like, “What is that?” I never take too much. I always think about the time when I visited my grandparents in Arizona, and my cousins told me that our grandparents would buy anything for you when you went out. I just never really felt like I could do that. [Laughs] I just wanted, like, one thing that was really cool, or two things, if it was okay to take two. So I resist the urge to scoop everything up in my arms and run away.