After years of being stuck in development hell, the wheels are finally moving on Black Adam. The Shazam! villain/anti-hero finally got a release date and a poster last week, and it looks like cinematographer Larry Sher (Joker) will work on the film for director Jaume Collet-Serra (Jungle Cruise). While we still don’t really know what to expect from Black Adam, star and producer Dwayne Johnson says that it will introduce the JSA. Speaking to ScreenRant, Johnson said, “JSA. We will introduce you to that, the world to JSA.”
So what is JSA? JSA stands for Justice Society of America, the oldest DC superhero team that even predates Justice League. Per Wikipedia, The JSA first appeared in AllStar Comics #3 (Winter 1940–1941), making it the first team of superheroes in comic books. The original members of the JSA include Doctor Fate, Hour-Man, the Specre, the Sandman (Wesley Dodds), the Atom (Al Pratt), the Flash (Jay Garrick), Green Lantern (Alan Scott), and Hawkman (Carter Hall). Of course, the DC movie is free to make the JSA team whatever they want as the team in the comics has changed loads of times over the years.
What makes JSA an interesting proposition is that it makes Black Adam an anti-hero story where he’s not just fighting worse people like Venom. He could really be taking on heroes, and that would make for an interesting dynamic where we’re rooting for the bad guy not because he’s fighting worse guys, but because we don’t like the heroes. That could be a neat inversion, especially if it’s tonally on the same level as the playful Shazam!, a character that Black Adam will inevitably meet in a future movie. Still, Black Adam is over two years away, so there’s time to figure out what this whole JSA thing means in relation to the character.
Black Adam opens December 22, 2021.