Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is finally here, bringing to an end months of anticipation. Unfortunately for fans, most critics seem to agree that it isn’t really very good. But that’s not gonna stop you from seeing it anyway, just to see what happens, right?
The film not only picks up where Man of Steel left off, but also introduces Batman and Wonder Woman to Superman’s world, along with playing its part in setting up all of the DC films on the way. We watched it with an eagle eye, looking out for every easter egg and hint we could find as to what’s to come. Needless to say, many spoilers ahead.
1. Mercy Graves
Keen fans might spot a familiar face in Lex Luthor’s entourage. His assistant, played by Tao Okamoto, is in fact none other than Mercy Graves, Lex’s bodyguard-cum-assistant from the ‘90s Superman cartoon – though she gets less bodyguarding to do this time around, and given her eventual fate, is unlikely to get the chance to next time.
2. I Believe You
Director Zack Snyder has made no secret of the fact that he’s drawn heavily from Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns for this film, but he lifted one exchange verbatim from the page. Late in the film, Batman smashes through a wall to grab a henchman guarding Martha Kent, and we get the above exchange, with the same killer final line: “I believe you.”
The much-hyped desert sequence of the film may have just been a strange dream/nightmare/vision, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t worth combing for clues. Those flying monsters, for example, look a lot like Parademons, the alien race best known for supporting none other than…
Meet the DC universe’s Thanos. Just as Marvel has slowly been building up their big bad, so DC looks to be setting up Darkseid as a major threat on the way. There’s the Parademons, the giant omega carved into the ground, and a certain ominous threat from Lex Luthor in the film’s final scenes. “He’s hungry…”
5. The Flash
We got glimpses of a few future Justice League members through Lex’s files, including Aquaman and Cyborg, but it was only The Flash that got to pop up twice. That was him at the end of Batman’s Darkseid vision, apparently using the Speedforce to let Bats know that “Lois Lane is the key.” Make of that what you will.
6. Robin & Joker
This would have been a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it moment if it hadn’t appeared in a couple of trailers, but it’s a reminder that this is a Batman who’s already fought the Joker – and lost a Robin because of it. Not to mention his line about Gotham’s history with “freaks dressed like clowns.”
7. Wayne Manor
We don’t see much of Wayne Manor in the film, but when we do it looks pretty screwed up. This could be a nod to the house’s destruction in The Dark Knight Returns, or its fiery fate in Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins.
8. Steve Trevor
Sure, he may have the most boring character name imaginable, but Steve Trevor is set to play a major role when Chris Pine plays him in next year’s Wonder Woman solo outing – and we got a quick look at him standing next to her back in 1918 in a pretty prominent photo in this film.
9. Death of Superman
This is a bit of a biggie. In the comics, Doomsday is most famous for one thing: killing Superman. So when he turns up in Batman v Superman’s climax, it’s pretty clear where things are going. There’s a fakeout death with the nuke, but eventually we get the real deal too… or at least that’s how it seems. Guess we’ve got to wait until Justice League – Part One to find out.