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Super Bowl 50 audiences were invited to fly the friendly skies above Metropolis — and the somewhat more grim air above Gotham City — via new Turkish Airlines commercials debuting during Sunday’s big game, but they were just the start of a campaign intended to make the fictional cities more real ahead of March’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.
The spots, created by ad agency Crispin Porter + Bogusky London, made their U.S. debut Sunday ahead of a global launch Feb. 19. Featuring each city’s business leader — Bruce Wayne (Ben Affleck) for Gotham, Lex Luthor (Jesse Eisenberg) for Metropolis — the ads direct viewers to newly created landing pages created to inform interested parties about the culture, geography and history of Batman and Superman’s individual stomping grounds, each one filled with easter eggs for the comic book faithful and newcomer alike.
Gotham’s page, for example, reveals that the city was “founded by a Norwegian mercenary,” before name checking a number of comic book creators who have contributed to the Dark Knight’s legacy while listing must-see destinations: the Ellsworth Building, Robinson Park and Port Adams, referencing editor Whitney Ellsworth, Batman co-creator Jerry Robinson and artist Neal Adams, respectively.
Similarly, the Metropolis page mentions Shuster Arena and Siegel Music Hall (after Joe and Jerry, Superman’s co-creators), as well as the Schaffenberger Gallery, named for the artist Kurt Shaffenberger. The page also mentions a couple of concepts familiar to comic book readers, including Luthor’s LexCorp Tower and the “Avenue of Tomorrow,” which houses high-tech think tanks and organizations. (The Gotham TV spot actually contains the most obvious comic book Easter egg: a neon sign announcing Ace Chemicals, the company traditionally responsible for the chemical soup that created the Joker.)
Both pages offer the chance for visitors to win seats on the inaugural flights to each destination, which translates in real world terms to attending the Batman v Superman premiere on March 20; the contest is open through March 9.
The Turkish Airlines component is just one part of the promotion, with a special edition of Time Out magazine, devoted to the two cities, scheduled for release ahead of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice arriving in theaters March 25.
After all this effort to make Metropolis and Gotham appear to be “real” cities, it can only be hoped that both will survive their respective heroes’ big screen clash. After all, now that we know that Little Odessa is one of Gotham’s culinary centers, it’d be a tragedy for it to be destroyed before we’ve all had a chance to visit…
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