DC’s ambition to craft a full-blown cinematic universe immediately after Man of Steel hasn’t exactly been working out for them. Both Batman V Superman and Suicide Squad, two films fans insisted would improve upon Man of Steel, fared even worse with critics and audiences. As of right now, a combination of studio interference and bad creative decisions are causing an unfortunate cycle for the DCEU.
Let’s be honest, the very idea of giving audiences a bunch of crossover films after one solo superhero movie was a pretty sketchy idea from the start. Hell, a proper sequel for Man of Steel was put on a permanent hold last year with Justice League just around the corner. However, plans can always change, and it seems like the DCEU is finally going to adapt a less-is-more mentality.
According to The Wrap, the long-awaited sequel to Man of Steel is reportedly in “active development.” Wrap writer
…a person close to the project told TheWrap that Superman is a top priority for the studio and getting the character right for audiences is of tantamount importance.
By “getting the character right,” it’s clear that the source was referring to how the DCEU arguably portrayed Superman as uncharacteristically dark and unlikable. Many feel that Superman’s constant moping, frowning, screaming and apparent disregard for people’s safety in the DCEU does not fit an iconic character of truth and justice. It will certainly be a challenge to re-tune the character’s controversial portrayal for Man of Steel 2.
Hopefully, Warner Brothers won’t go with the Suicide Squad approach and just add some more jokes to Superman’s dialogue. While that would lighten up his character, it wouldn’t make him any more likable if he’s still written badly. Warner Brothers and DC no doubt want to give fans a reason to come back to their franchise, and the glut of badly-reviewed films surely must have them worried.
Perhaps instead of trying to hype audiences up with colorful characters, flashy advertisements and big casts, the DCEU should go back to basics. With Man of Steel 2 and their other upcoming solo films, DC could finally get a chance to craft cohesive, clean, and most importantly separate stories for their iconic characters. Whether the DCEU’s hype train is heading towards a cliff or a light at the end of the tunnel, we can only hope that their films will get better.