Marvel’s Iron Man jumped onto the silver screen back in 2008 and changed the landscape of not only the genre of comicbook movies, but Hollywood as a whole. The idea of slowly and meticulously introducing a core of superheroes cultivating into a shared universe where all of them unite to share the same screen time in the same major picture was unprecedented. Iron Man was introduced first, followed by a reintroduction of this version of the Hulk. Captain America followed as a risky period piece that could have easily failed. Thor, the biggest risk of all finalized the world building leading up to Avengers.
Of course we all know how that turned out for Marvel and those particular superheroes. DC has attempted a different approach. I believe jumping straight into the justice league is appropriate and necessary at this point to compete with Marvel. But DC should learn from the success of Marvel and their Movie Business Model.
Hopefully Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice will be an excellent film that will jump start the new DC cinematic universe. If so, and if Darkseid is the direction the villain the plot is indeed hinting at, then DC has two major choices. First, Darkseid can become the overarching enemy and every element of the story is simply a proxy to that villain. Of course this would be stringently borrowing from the Marvel Thanos Model. Some fans and movie-goers may think DC is copying Marvel. Option two, Darkseid is the main villain of Justice League Part 1 and Part 2. This is probable and more than likely the case. Unfortunately, after part 2, the Darkseid problem will probably be resolved. So how do you top Darkseid. Well now we get into the premise of this piece.
It seems likely that we will get an introduction to Doomsday in Batman v. Superman. I could see Doomsday playing into the next Superman stand alone film. Joker will make an appearance of some kind in Suicide Squad. It isn’t clear yet who the villain of Wonder Woman will be at this point. But those main villains along with Lex Luthor from Batman V. Superman will have been introduced by the first Justice League. By the time the second Justice League has premiered, both the Flash and Aquaman would have had their own solo films as well. So sure, Darkseid is fine as the initial villain that will unite the seven. But DC has a secret weapon, an ace in the hole that Marvel does not. DC has a stable of great villains. Commonly when those villains have collected together, they have formed the Legion of Doom.
That’s right folks, the villain of the Justice League film or films after Darkseid should be the Legion of Doom.
Ok, maybe not that Legion of Doom.
The Legion of Doom could be for DC what the Avengers were for Marvel. Imagine the new Jesse Eisenberg Lex Luthor popping into DC’s films at some point to recruit villains for the organization. Sure it is similar to the SHIELD initiative but DC can add a distinctive touch to the process. Imagine a union of Lex Luthor, Doomsday, Black Manta, Reverse Flash, the Joker, and whoever they choose as the villain of Wonder Woman, all together on the big screen. If DC wishes to top Marvel’s Avengers Initiative concept, this is the way to do it.