If you haven’t seen Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice then look away now – because this article is going pretty deep into events that happen towards the end of the film, and in particular as to why director Zack Snyder killed off THAT character in such shocking fashion.
Final warning – after this gif, it’s all spoiler territory.
Still here? Then you’re probably wondering why the first film to feature Henry Cavill’s Superman in three years took the surprise decision to kill the character off at the hands of Doomsday, leaving Superman’s family and friends distraught and Batman determined to gather together other superheroes to defend the Earth.
Well, Snyder has now revealed that he just wanted to make things a bit harder for superhero team the Justice League and their founder Bruce Wayne (Ben Affleck) – and offing the man of steel in a plot inspired by classic comic-book arc The Death of Superman seemed like the best way to do it.
“I wanted Bruce Wayne to build the Justice League,” Snyder told Entertainment Weekly.
“With Superman around, it’s a different conversation when you create the Justice League, right? It’s like, ‘Me and Superman, we want to make a Justice League.’ [Other heroes would be] like, ‘Okay, yeah, I’ll join!’
“Bruce Wayne having to go out and find these seven samurai by himself, that’s a lot more interesting of a premise.”
Amusingly, Snyder went on to admit that another of his motives behind sidelining Supes was so that his fellow heroes actually had a challenge in defeating their enemies, without Superman just flying around and doing it all for them while they sipped ice-cold margaritas.
“I felt like, without Superman, there is definitely a vulnerability to the team that they’re gonna need to figure something out, you know?” the director explained.
“Superman does represent the powerful. He’s the Michael Jordan of heroes, he’s gonna score.”
In other words, the first Justice League film (coming out next year) will be a bit like the bits in classic DC cartoons where Superman would just get knocked out for a bit to keep the fight scenes going – only for a whole film. We can almost picture the script now…
Superman is dead and/or missing – and in his absence, Batman travels the world on a trying quest to build a credible superhero universe without spending as much time as Marvel did.
Batman: Will you join the Justice League, but without Superman?
Wonder Woman: Maybe.
The Flash: No! (but really quickly)
Cyborg: Computer says no.
Aquaman: Glub glub no.
Batman: Damn – are you sure?
Everyone: Oh go on then.
Later, a deadly threat threatens the Justice League, who try their hardest but can’t prevail against the enemy/cataclysmic event/negative film reviews.
Batman: Oh no, the world is doomed! If only we had a member whose godlike powers rendered the rest of us largely pointless!
Superman suddenly appears, in a way that almost certainly in some way evokes Jesus Christ. He defeats the enemy and the world is saved. Batman helps a bit even though he’s basically just a really buff dude and not a super-powered individual.
Batman: Thank goodness you were here, Superman – but also that you weren’t here too much earlier, or the enemy would have been beaten extremely quickly and anti-climactically.
Superman: You’re welcome, fellow son of Martha. See you in the sequel.
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is in cinemas now