Justice League is a long-gestating prospect and a movie that a decade ago no one ever expected to get made. Now we’re a few weeks away from seeing the League on the big screen and watching characters like Aquaman and Cyborg finally kick ass in the cinema. This got us thinking about what this movie would have looked like if it had been made in the past fifty years, so we gazed into our crystal ball (with some help from DC superfan Miles A. Harris) and found some AE coverage from the ’60s, ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s to see what Audiences Everywhere [would have] thought of these movies back in the day.

1960s

“…Set reports about conflicts between Rock Hudson (as the caped crusader) and director Stanley Kubrick don’t seem to have harmed the finished product as this movie is a real rockin’ scene from beginning to end. James Earl Jones laid a trip all over me covered in robot parts and more firepower than LBJ sent to ‘Nam. Natalie Wood’s Wonder Woman was a heroine for the longhairs in the audience talking about peace and love (while also kicking some dudes through walls). I have to admit I had some doubts that Poncie Ponce could play a tough-as-nails, fish-talking hero but he let it all hang out and his Aquaman blew my goddamned mind. But in the end, it’s Jack Nicholson’s wild turn as the fastest man alive that makes the movie really jam and had me, and the rest of the audience ready to pay our 70 cents for another ticket straight away”

– Excerpt taken from Groovy Movies with Audiences Everywhere

Issue dated 11-19-1968 – Byline: Richard “Right-On” Newby

1970s

“…with the budget ballooning and the movie ending up taking 16 months to film, critics were ready to savage Coppola’s Justice League on sight. However, within five minutes of the screening I attended you could hear people whispering excitedly and there was a sense of trying to remember exactly where you were when you first saw this absolute masterpiece. Coppola’s cast: Martin Sheen as Batman, Jane Seymour as Wonder Woman, Chevy Chase as the Flash, newcomer Larry Fishbourne as Cyborg, and Gilbert Lani Kauhi (getting all the best lines) as Aquaman, are electrifying and the chemistry between them makes you want to get a beer with them or follow them into an illegal war to protect our colonial interests in South East Asia. Or maybe just the beer is fine.”

– Transcript from a 1977 episode of Audiences Everywhere at the Movies with Grace and Dave.

1980s

“…with a soundtrack by John Williams and Harrison Ford in one of the leading roles as Batman, it would be easy to think that Spielberg is going for Indiana Jones with superheroes. Instead, most of the action is provided by the wonderful Wonder Woman (Sigourney Weaver), this critic’s new personal hero (move over Geraldine Ferraro!) The Amazonian is surrounded by some muscled eye-candy but Spielberg makes her the star of the show pitching her against ancient evils that make the end of Raiders look like an episode of The Facts of Life. The only one who comes close to stealing the movie from her is Mork himself, Robin Williams, debuting on the big screen as the Flash, the fastest man alive (and with a motormouth to match his running speed)”

– Excerpt taken from AE Movie Beat!!!

Issue dated 11-19-1986 – By-line: Schyler “No Relation to Steve” Martin

1990s

“…Whoomp! There it is! After years of waiting, James Cameron’s Justice League is here and dudes, it does not disappoint! There are a lot of things to expect when you go see a Cameron joint: explosions, crazy special effects, explosions, action, explosions and, oh yeah, explosions. Justice League gives you all that and more. The League is cast to perfection with George Clooney as Batman, Angela Bassett as Wonder Woman, Matthew McConaughey as Aquaman, and Matt Damon as Flash. The MVP here is most definitely Will Smith bringing the cool, stealing the show as Cyborg (cos you know Cameron loves his robots!), and giving us the dancefloor hit of the summer with “Just Us League (The Cyborg Dance)” (featuring Sisqo). Oh, and here at AE we don’t usually give away any secrets so cover your eyes now, but there’s a cool little appearance from one of Matt Damon’s buddies (you know the one) as the man of steel himself.”

– Transcript from a 1997 episode of MTV’s AE to the MAX hosted by Miles A. Harris