So you sat through Justice League. How you holding up? You probably have many thoughts. But if you also might have a question such as, “What was going on in that yacht villains meet-up post-credits scene?” Well here is what’s-what:
First, we’re not talking about the mid-credits scene with Superman deciding to race The Flash like every other site. Because you shouldn’t need that scene to be explained to you.
But after you’ve sat through the dizzying list of CGI animators who’re debating whether to include Justice League on their resumes or not, we get the big scene that is potentially important to the Warner Bros. DC universe.
Jesse Eisenberg’s Lex Luthor has escaped. Obviously. Because evil cannot be contained if they’re iconic supervillains with a high level of household name recognition. He’s embracing his character’s traditional shaved head look now. He’s got a swanky boat. And he has a visitor…
This is Deathstroke, a.k.a. the assassin Slade Joseph Wilson (Joe Manganiello). That’s right, the character from The CW’s Arrow, except not played by Manu Bennett. Because along with Ezra Miller playing a radically different big screen version of The Flash than The CW’s Grant Gustin, DC just wants to confuse anybody trying to keep track of their heroes. Deathstroke hasn’t actually made a film appearance before and you’d be forgiven if you saw his shadow with those two back-mounted weapon handles and you briefly thought, “Wait, is that Deadpool?!”
So Lex wants Deathstroke to help him form “a league of our own,” which immediately brings to mind Tom Hanks explaining there’s no crying in baseball. But Lex seems to be referring to forming Injustice League, a villains-based counter agency to the Justice League (personally I prefer the Lex’s other round-table organization, the Legion of Doom, if only because the name is cooler).
Now it would be a bit easier to explain the relevance of this scene if the future of the DC franchise was more clear.
Deathstroke is expected to next appear in The Batman, which has been having some, er, issues in development, to put it mildly, and might recast Ben Affleck. There’s no start of production date yet on that.
Lex having escaped would seem to set up some Superman vs. Lex action for the Man of Steel sequel, which is also in development without a date.
The Injustice League would seem to be a setup for the Justice League sequel but that’s, you guessed it, in development and without a date.
In the near-ish term, Aquaman is happening for 2018. Wonder Woman 2, of course, for 2019, along with Shazam! Beyond that, there are a lot of other DC movies in development — like there’s supposed to be a Cyborg movie in 2020. But will that actually happen?
So. Deathstroke is now on the big screen DC universe, Lex has escaped, a legion of villains are coming … but exactly when and where is TBD.
For more, check out our Justice League: What worked and What Didn’t breakdown of the 5 things we really liked in the film, and the 7 things we didn’t.