Justice League: Gods and Monsters appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 1.78:1 on this Blu-Ray Disc. Overall, the image looked positive.
Only a smidgen of softness appeared, and that was result of the inexpensive source animation. Overall accuracy varied from very good to excellent, with an emphasis on the latter. No issues with shimmering or jaggies materialized, and I saw no edge haloes or noise reduction. Of course, I found no print flaws here.
In terms of colors, Monsters went with a stylized look. It tended toward low-key tones and favored a fairly teal appearance much of the time. The colors seemed fine, as they represented their intended schemes. Blacks were deep and dark, while shadows looked smooth and clear. This wasn’t a great image but it was very good.
When I examined the DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack of Monsters, it created a fine sense of action. The movie packed a lot of battles and involving material, and it used the five channels to impart that information in a lively manner. Explosions and fights filled the channels to create a full spectrum, and quieter elements fleshed out the room as well.
Across the board, the material sounded good. Speech remained distinctive and concise, without edginess, and music seemed vivid and full. Effects appeared accurate and tight, with clear highs and some powerful lows. All in all, the mix worked nicely.
As we shift to the set’s extras, we launch with a Sneak Peek at Batman: Bad Blood. This goes for 11 minutes, 45 seconds and includes comments from producer James Tucker, director Jay Oliva, DC Entertainment Animation creative director Mike Carlin, and actors Jason O’Mara, Yvonne Strahovski, Ernie Hudson, and Gaius Charles. We learn about story/characters as well as cast and performances. This serves to promote the movie and that’s about it.
Three featurettes follow. Alternate Realities: Infinite Possibilities runs 19 minutes, 24 seconds and offers remarks from Carlin, DC Entertainment co-publisher Dan DiDio, executive producer Bruce Timm, co-producer Alan Burnett, Justice League: Throne of Atlantis writer Heath Corson, and DC Entertainment Chief Creative Officer Geoff Johns. The program reflects on alternate realities in DC comics throughout the years as well as their connection to Monsters. Though not exhaustive, of course, this becomes a nice overview of the different “fantasy” tales.
Next comes the 23-minute, 37-second Calculated Risks: The Making of Gods and Monsters. It features Timm, Burnett, Carlin, and Johns. We learn about the project’s development as well as story/characters and design choices. “Risks” covers a good variety of film-related topics in a concise, informative manner.
The New Gods occupies 22 minutes, 13 seconds and provides notes from DiDio, Timm, The Great Darkness Saga writer Paul Levitz, comic book historian Alan Kistler, writer/artist Walter Simonson, and DCE Creative Affairs SVP Gregory Noveck. “Gods” gives us a basic biography of comic book legend Jack Kirby before it tells us the origins of Darkseid and others. It’s a good little synopsis of these issues.
We also get two Bonus Cartoons. We find the “Phantoms” episode of Legion of Siiperheroes (22:25) and “Brave New Metropolis” from Superman: The Animated Series (21:19). Both offer alternate universe tales, and “Brave” is easily the better of the two.
The disc opens with ads for Batman Unlimited: Monster Mayhem, Scooby-Doo and Kiss: Rock and Roll Mystery, Justice League: Throne of Atlantis and Lego Dimensions. Trailers includes promos for Teen Titans Go!, The Man from UNCLE and Batman Vs. Robin.
The package also includes a DVD copy of Monsters. This comes with the preview of Bad Blood and a few trailers but lacks any other extras.
With an intriguing “alternate universe” premise, Justice League: Gods and Monsters looked like it’d offer a good adventure. Unfortunately, it suffers from pacing problems as well as a generally dull narrative. The Blu-ray offers solid picture and audio along with a decent set of supplements. I want to like Monsters but it leaves me cold too much of the time.