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Western Animation / Superman: Brainiac Attacks

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Superman: Brainiac Attacks is a Direct to Video movie, created to cash in on the mild success of Superman Returns, that on aired a part of the Toonami block on Saturday June 17, 2006 and was released on DVD Tuesday June 20, 2006. It also aired on Toon Disney on June 16, 2008, being the first Superman film to air on the channel. The film features Superman battling the forces of Lex Luthor and Brainiac. It also focuses on the relationship between Superman and Lois Lane and stands as the first Superman solo animated film.

Despite sharing the same art style and several voice actors, it is not an installment of the DC Animated Universe.

Provides Examples Of:

  • 10-Minute Retirement: Clark considers quitting his job at the Daily Planet until he realizes Lois will rush into danger with or without him around.
  • Adaptational Dye-Job: Mercy is a blonde in the movie whereas she was a brunette in the series.
  • Adaptational Villainy: Mercy is a lot less morally ambiguous. She is fully supportive of Lex's secret pact with Brainiac.
  • All Girls Want Bad Boys:
    • Gender-Inverted. Jimmy has a crush on Mercy Graves, and even states that her being on the "dark side" only increases the allure. He seems to drop it after she beats the crap out of him, though.
    • Similarly, Mercy admits she thinks Jimmy is cute, but it doesn’t stop her from immediately trying to kill him.
  • Bait-and-Switch Comment: Midway through the film, Perry and Jimmy, waiting at the hospital, note that both Clark and Superman are conspicuously absent, and it seems as though they've figured out Clark's secret...but their conclusion is that Clark deeply cares about Lois and just can't stand to see her like this.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: Lex Luthor, for all his ambitions of world domination, is hopelessly outclassed by Brainiac. He makes a deal with Brainiac to help dispose of Superman, whereupon he will seemingly chase Brainiac out of Earth, making himself a hero in the eyes of the populace. Unsurprisingly, Brainiac ends up turning on him. It turns out Luthor anticipated that, which is why he planted a self-destruct sequence on him. What he didn't anticipate was Brainiac finding, and subsequently removing, said self-destruct sequence, leaving Luthor to be quickly flattened.
  • Grievous Harm with a Body: There is something weirdly funny seeing Brainiac smacking Superman around with Lex Luthor in his battle suit...
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Mercy gets taken out in one hit when Jimmy climbs into one of her boss's Lexo-suits.
  • Hopeless Suitor: Jimmy has a massive crush on Mercy Graves, which Lois doesn't approve of. Not only is she older than him, but Mercy is also Lex's bodyguard. He ultimately loses interest after she assaults him after catching him snooping in a restricted area.
  • Informed Deformity: Downplayed example. Jimmy actively avoids Sara, seeing her as unattractive in comparison to Mercy simply for wearing glasses. This is in spite of her having the exact same slender body type as virtually every major female character in the film.
  • Lotus-Eater Machine: Superman has to go fetch some Applied Phlebotinum from the Phantom Zone to save Lois Lane and defeat Brainiac. It seems like he's done it and got back, and cured Lois and revealed his secret identity, and they're officially together now. When she starts talking about forgetting about defeating Brainiac, he realises it's all just an illusion that the Phantom Zone is using to keep him from escaping and breaks free of the illusion.
  • Large Ham: Lex Luthor.
  • Lighter and Softer: Than Superman: The Animated Series, which the film's art style was based on. However, in this case it only decreases the quality.
  • Ms. Fanservice:
    • Mercy spends a great deal of her screentime doing little more than showing off her long, toned yet shapely legs.
    • The same goes for Lois Lane, who also shows off her long shapely legs through her skirt and wears a sexy black dress that looks great on her.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • Lois mentions "that Green Lantern guy" can stop Brainiac while Superman is lying low.
    • "Look! Up in the sky! It is Superman!"
    • While trying to spin the situation to his advantage at the end, Lex implies he and the Last Son of Krypton are a kind of team and calls himself "Superman's pal." One of the reporters immediately points out that the title actually belongs to Jimmy, whom Lex's bodyguard is accused of assaulting.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • Lex Luthor shouldn't have expected to be able to plant a self-destruct mechanism on a Kryptonian supercomputer without it noticing...
      Lex Luthor: Oh boy.
    • Luthor ends his last scene in a quiet freakout. One of the reporters interrupts his self-aggrandizing (and rather inaccurate) account of fighting Brainiac to mention the report of Lex's bodyguard assaulting Jimmy. Lex tries to spin it as an honest misunderstanding resulting from the teen poking around a private area. Then another reporter holds up a piece of incriminating evidence with the Lex-Corp logo on it and asks for a comment. Lex can only maintain a wide but unsettled smile and give Mercy damage control instructions.
      Lex: Inform my attorneys. [beat] All of Them.
  • Out-of-Character Alert: Superman realizes he's trapped inside an illusion when "Lois" suggests he should forget about Brainiac.
  • Same Character, But Different: It was not written to be part of the DCAU, but the Superman: The Animated Series art style was used, so it was quite jarring when some characters acted nothing like you expected, with Brainiac himself a powerful but standard-issue bad guy, and Lex Luthor being basically his old-school-film-series self.
  • Shipper on Deck:
  • Smug Snake: This Lex Luthor only thinks he's very clever.
  • Through His Stomach: Sara brings Jimmy his favorite foods while he's in the hospital, finally making him relaxed around her.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: By his admission, Jimmy likes cheeseburgers and chili fries.
  • True Love's Kiss: Superman waking Lois from her coma really looks like this, even if it is actually the residue of the serum in him that cured her.
  • What Would X Do?: Jimmy asks himself what Lois would do while he's infiltrating Lex-Corp.