What looked like two battles for the ages beforehand were a bit lackluster in reality. Batman vs. Superman has been a discussion held by many comics fans over many years, and Mark Twain vs. John Steinbeck also seemed like a classic 19th century vs. 20th century match-up. The end result... well, read on:
#1 Superman vs. #2 Batman
This one was over practically before it was begun. In an urban setting, with diplomatic and personality considerations over a time-frame that requires strategy as well as tactics, Batman would have a legitimate shot at taking out Superman. On a small, rectangular court with very precisely prescribed rules that emphasize physical skills like speed and power... well, all the gadgets in the world might not have helped Batman enough (except maybe for a kryptonite infusted basketball). Superman scored early and often, cruising to an easy 7-2 victory.
#2 Mark Twain vs. #3 John Steinbeck
As easy as Superman's victory was, Mark Twain's path through John Steinbeck was even easier. Anticipated as a bumping, physical match-up between two literary icons became a contrast of beautiful, nothing-but-net jump shots and flat, clanking-off-the-back-of-the-iron bricks. The end result was an 8-1 thrashing, and an Elite Eight match up between Superman and Mark Twain. From the opening tip, it was clear that John Steinbeck was tired-- worn out perhaps from his emotionally and physically draining victory over William Shakespeare in the previous round. Twain, meanwhile, looked fresh, moving easily and jumping like his famous frog. He'll need all his energy and more when he faces off against the Man of Steel next week.