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I claim no rights to any of the characters herein. Not in proper comic format, so use your imagination.

A Working Title Written by Max Landis

THIS SCENE TAKES PLACE Three months after Doomsday. Superman, to the public, is dead. Clark has been living on Kent Farm, being trained every day by Batman, rehabbing his injuries. From my pitch for The Death and Return of Superman (as an Elseworlds, Early DC continuity story), found here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6RWMc-EdDRY EXT. KENT FARM - FIELD - SUNSET Clark sits quietly on the back of a rusted out tractor, drinking a beer in the dusky orange light. There are still stitches in his jaw, staples in a crescent around his left eye. He can see Lois and his mother out on a plowed part of the field; theyre playing catch. His mother says something. Lois laughs.

BRUCE (O.S.) Does that even affect youClark startles, falling off the tractor. next to him. Bruce was right

CLARK Jesus you cant just- dont do that to me, it- heebie-jeebies, big heebie-jeebiesBRUCE Does alcohol affect you. Clark regards his spilt beer. CLARK Yeah, I- I can let it. I can let stuff affect me. I can, you know, be normal. ...Im not super all the time. I mean how do you think I- yknow- LoisClark glances back at Lois in the distance, and laughs selfconsciously. He quickly changes his tact. CLARK (CONTD) Its not effortless. The senses, the strength, flying; its only because Im focusing. At all.

2.

Bruce silently regards Clark, who fidgets. CLARK (CONTD) I wanted to say sorry about today, I can do better. I can work harder, and I will, I just- I dont know if this is all...If this is worth it. Bruce continues to silently stare at Clark. CLARK (CONTD) What I mean is- I dont think Im going to be...The cape, again, Im worried that- all this, the training- You might be wasting your time. Bruce has no visible reaction. Clark looks at his hands, then the sunset, away from the silent, handsome, grimly implacable face of the billionaire who sits on the rusted out tractor. CLARK (CONTD) I mean jesus youre like- youve been training for twenty years and you said youre not even at top level; I know Im strong and Im supposed to be this, this other thing but I dont know if Ill ever be ready toBRUCE You will be Superman again. CLARK DAMN IT I WAS NEVER SUPERMAN IN THE FIRST PLACE! Clark stops himself, breathing hard. visible reaction. Bruce still has no

CLARK (CONTD) (beat) Its just a NAME, Bruce. Superman isnt my LIFE, its just a name Lois made up for the press two years ago. Im NOT HIM, that symbol isnt even an S. Im not beholden to some blue and red suit, Im a person, not a character. Whats so hard to understand about that? (MORE)

3. CLARK (CONTD) You push and you push but- I other goals, before this. I other- other priorities than and a costume, I have a job, friends, I have a life... (beat, hits hard) Im not Batman.

had have a cape I have

Now its Bruce who fidgets.

Clark seizes the opportunity.

CLARK (CONTD) I want to help people. I do. I understand that I have an- a responsibility, or...an obligation, but you have to see that Doomsday...It wasnt just something that happened to me. I saw people die in Metropolis and I couldnt save them, I was helpless and with an entire city counting on me, I failedBRUCE (flatly) Failed. Clark reels on him, about to launch an invective, but Bruce continues, dry, flat. BRUCE (CONTD) Youre really so selfish that you cant see that you were the only one who could have stopped DoomsCLARK Y- wha- YOURE calling ME selfish? Im sorry, is that a joke? Are you this much of a hypocrite? YOURE BRUCE WAYNE. Youre worth SEVEN billion dollars, youre a genius and one of the most skilled tacticians on EARTH, and what do you do? Protect ONE city. ONE. Its all about YOU and your DEAD PARENTS in that alley, you dont care about Gotham, you dont care about the people, you just care about YOU, and YOUR WARBruce stands up. He seems about to speak, then doesnt.

4.

CLARK (CONTD) (pulling back) Do you know how much I just wanted to leave, after it all? I never felt like...I never felt like an alien before, Bruce. Never more than I do now and I cant take it back. (beat) I just- I wanted to just fly into space. I stayed...for Lois, but I just wanted to fly away and...I dont know, find something that could.... (long beat) That man Green Arrow. Hes a...hes a hero. Those relief workers, the first responders... I... Im just...another...monster... Clark turns away from Bruce. He takes a breath, looking at Lois across the field. The sun is almost gone. Stars have begun to appear in the sky. Lois and Martha Kent are headed inside. Clark takes off his glasses, and wipes a tear, then lets out a single sob. He wipes his tears on his sleeve but theyre coming more freely now. CLARK (CONTD) I just want to...I just wanted to help people... Clark takes a moment, fully, silently crying now. He wipes his tears on his sleeve again, and then realizes Bruce is standing right next to him. CLARK (CONTD) I dont mean to disappoint you. Im sorry I said all that, I justI dont have anyone to talk to about it and it allBRUCE Ive come to realize something, out here. You taught me, I think. Clark, confused, falls completely silent. They stand there next to each other, Clark looking at Bruce, who stares out at the sunset. After a moment, Bruce hands him a hankerchief. Clark wipes his tears, and loudly blows his nose. Theres another beat.

5.

Bruce hands Clark a beer.

Clark stares at it, dumbfounded.

CLARK ...whats about to happBRUCE I have been operating on the assumption that, to be good, people must be afraid. I have been offering only fear. Whilst you, even though you dont mean to, even though it isnt your intention, have been motivating the entire human race by offering a better alternative. (beat) You offered hope. (beat) And it wasnt a lie, and it wasnt a gimmick. All Clark Kent did was be the person we needed him to be. (beat) Superman. Clark smiles slightly; on some level he really appreciates this, but then quickly hides it. The final rays of the smoky orange sun stretch Bruce and Clarks shadows out long: the shadows of Superman and Batman. Bruce turns to make eye contact with Clark. BRUCE (CONTD) Every day more extraordinary people with progressively darker intentions crawl up from the basement of our world. Every day I find new entries flooding my database, unexplainable sightings in the sky, horrific crimes, terrifying weapons, supernatural phenomena. (beat) Lois Lane is a visionary. She knows life on earth is changing faster than ever before. Were entering a very frightening time, and Superman simply isnt enough any more. (beat) Doomsday wont be the last threat. There needs to be a line.

6.

CLARK What are you saying? BRUCE Im saying there are others, like us. At our level of potential. CLARK Potential- BRUCE Potential to help people. this planet. Protect

CLARK But cant we do that without the costumes? Without symbols and pageantry and masks? BRUCE I am proposing to you a formula wherein by becoming symbols, we could achieve something greater. Wonder-Woman. Aquaman. Green Lantern. The Flash. We couldCLARK Youre talking about a team? BRUCE Im talking about an organized affiliationCLARK Youre telling me you want to create a military entity, youre telling me you want to set up Mount Olympus as real thing in modern cultureBRUCE What Im telling you is that the fate of this planet and the people on it can never again be allowed to come down to a punching contest. Clark is quiet. BRUCE (CONTD) Im proposing a hand, not a fist. A tool, not a weapon. The Justice League is a necessity, not an indulgence.

7.

CLARK ...The Justice League? BRUCE Its a working title. Theres a beat. CLARK You know...You know these people? Like you could contact Wonder-WomanBRUCE Yes. CLARK You know their real namesBRUCE Yes. Theres a looong beat. Clark laughs, and sips his beer. offers it to Bruce, who doesnt react. CLARK Who would be in charge, you knowwhos the quarterback? Bruce is silent for a loooong time and then: BRUCE You. CLARK HA! Me!? BRUCE When you return, yes. CLARK I already told you Im not coming back. Bruce is suddenly drinking the beer. Clark, confused, looks down at his empty hand where the beer used to be. CLARK (CONTD) Hey- how the hell didjaBRUCE (wiping his mouth) Superman would be the glue holding together a new presentation of metahumans. As protectors. (MORE) He

8. BRUCE (CONT'D) As arbiters. Not outcasts, not freaks, and most certainly not (spits the word) Celebrities. (beat) Because youre right, Clark. Protecting Metropolis and Gotham isnt enough. (beat) We- I owe the world better.

Night has fallen on Kansas completely. above the two men.

The stars sparkle

Clark is clearly, very actually considering everything Bruce has said. CLARK Who else have you told? BRUCE No one. Just you. Just now. This is the first time Ive said any of this out loud. Theres a long beat. CLARK Really? BRUCE Yes. CLARK ...why me? Theres a beat, and then Bruce smiles, and looks down, laughing self consciously. BRUCE Because youre the only person I really trust. You- ha- ... (beat) Youre my only friend. Clark looks at Bruce, who wont meet his eyes. BRUCE (CONTD) Think about it? CLARK ...Okay.

9.

A bell rings back from the house. porch. Boys! JOHN Dinners up!

Pa Kent stands on the

He goes inside. Clark and Bruce stand alone. Bruce tosses Clark the beer, who fumbles it, and it spills on the ground. Clark indicates the spilled beer. CLARK Leader of the Justice League? Yes. BRUCE Absolutely.

Clark laughs. Bruce laughs too, and they head back inside, but we stay by the tractor as they get further and further away. CLARK
Can you really just call WonderWoman?

BRUCE
Yes.

CLARK
...Whats she like?

BRUCE (beat)
Scary.

Theyre almost out of sight, back to the house. BRUCE (CONTD)


Tomorrow Im going to show you how to use nunchuks.

CLARK
No way. So cool.

END.