What Does Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice Mean for the DC Cinematic Universe?

DC's latest blockbuster epic, Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, was just released to the world a couple weeks ago, and was met with mediocre reviews. While I thought the film was good but not great (you can read our review here), it is in no way a "blow" to the impending DC Cinematic Universe. The films can certainly carry on, and Batman v. Superman actually does a decent job of setting up the larger universe, though its inclusion is a bit forced. But not everyone shares this mindset. There are many who think that Batman v. Superman sank the DC ship. So what exactly does Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, both in its content and reception, mean for the larger DC Cinematic Universe?

This editorial will contain spoilers for Batman v. Superman, so if you have not seen the film, then come back to this article later, because I will go in-depth with the film's spoilers and twists.

First let's talk about what the film itself means for the larger universe. A lot of people I know were angered by how the film ended. In the climatic fight against Doomsday, Superman (Henry Cavill) heroically stabs the creature with the Kryptonite spear, but at the same time is impaled by Doomsday. At the Man of Steel's funeral, Batman (Ben Affleck) and Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot) decide they need to form the Justice League, now that Superman is gone from the world. And at the last second, we see the dirt move on Superman's coffin, showing that he may not be gone. I personally wasn't upset over this part, because I don't think the dirt moving means that Superman busts out of the coffin in the next frame. I think it was just Zack Snyder telling the fans that the world's most iconic superhero is not actually dead, which admittedly is stupid. That scene works for me as long as a crucial plot point of Justice League is finding a way to resurrect Superman to aid in the fight against Darkseid. But if Superman comes back to life in the first ten or so minutes of Justice League, then I'll agree his entire death in Batman v. Superman was pointless.

So now that that's out of the way, let's talk about Batman's email to Wonder Woman. Was this a poor way to introduce us to the Justice League? Yes, but the scene itself was fine. I really liked the Flash's (Ezra Miller) clip. It fit the character, and it worked. The Aquaman (Jason Momoa) clip was fine. It didn't really do much. The Cyborg (Ray Fisher) clip was okay, but it went on way too long. But I felt these were fine introductions to the characters. They could have been done better, but they worked fine. And as for Batman's Knightmare, I'm not sure what to think of it. It was a cool sequence, but I'm not exactly sure what it means. We see the Omega symbol, which is a reference to Darkseid, but as to what the whole Batman fighting against a tyrannical Superman... it felt a lot like Injustice: Gods Among Us to me. Especially with Flash telling a sleeping Bruce Wayne that Lois Lane (Amy Adams) will die. So is this a hint as to the future to come? I really don't know. The Injustice story line is something interesting to explore further down the road, but not right now. So sadly, I don't have any answers as to what this means. But if Injustice is going to become DC's Infinity War, then that will be very exciting to see!

Now let's get into the film's reception. It got very low critical scores on Rotten Tomatoes, and many fans were mixed. Some think that DC blew it, and that Zack Snyder should be taken off of Justice League. I don't agree, necessarily. Did DC make an average movie when they had all the pieces in place to make a great one? Yes, but they didn't ruin the DC Cinematic Universe. Not even close. This is a step back from Man of Steel, but it is not over. DC can still press forward with Justice League and all their other films, but they just need to take a moment and re-evaluate their plan. They need to have a talk with Snyder and figure this out. The problem with Batman v. Superman was really the story, and that is something they can iron out before they begin filming.

I don't think Snyder is an incapable director. I thought he did a great job with 300, Watchmen and Man of Steel. He can make a good movie, but it just didn't happen with Batman v. Superman. Whether he had too much pressure from the studio or if he just had a bad day at the office is unknown, but I think we can agree that the messiness of Batman v. Superman can't be repeated with Justice League. If DC gets their sh*t together, they can make an awesome Justice League film with Snyder, but they need to iron out these details. I don't think the answer is to kick Snyder out, or to delay the film. They need to just take a minute, have Ben Affleck do a once-over of the script, and make sure everything is perfect before the proceed with the film. The DC Cinematic Universe is far from ruined. This was a step back from Man of Steel, but the universe is not ruined. All DC needs to do is listen to the criticism, re-evaluate Justice League's script, and then proceed. Snyder is not an awful director at all. He can make good films. He just needs a strong script to help him, and hopefully with Chris Terrio and Ben Affleck working with him, he can get that.

What do you think? What does Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice mean, both in the film itself and its reception, for the larger DC Cinematic Universe? Should Zack Snyder do Justice League? Did you like Batman v. Superman? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

Written by: Nate
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