So, here’s the thing. Whatever we may personally think of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, DC’s first full entry in its burgeoning DC Extended Universe – Man of Steel arguably being more of an inadvertent prequel – there are a whole lot of people who loved it, and an even larger group of people who actively disliked it. Wherever we may fall on that spectrum, it’s worth bearing in mind that, from critical, fan-response and box office perspectives, Batman v Superman was , and .
With the DCEU now in full swing, though, and the flagship Justice League very much on the horizon – Justice League Part One – it’s perhaps worth asking one of the big questions lurking underneath the surface of DC’s newborn cinematic universe:
Can The DCEU Ever Overturn Its Bad First Impression?
After all, while there’s something to be said for , there’s also a pretty solid argument that an suggests that many fans were unimpressed with what they rushed to see. That, combined with a critical mauling and widespread and vocal fan dissatisfaction, would seem to imply that the DCEU is suffering from something of a bad first impression.
Can the DCEU turn things around before Justice League arrives on our screens, though? Well, let’s take a look at the two sides of that particular argument…
The Downside: It’s Possible That Many Fans Will Never Come Back
The logic here is pretty simple. For many fans, the one-two punch of Man of Steel‘s neck-snapping Superman and Batman v Superman‘s gun-toting Batman may simply be too much of a shift from their baseline perception of the heroes – and they may simply choose to stay away from the dark and gritty MCU.
Now, of course, there’s always the possibility that the arrival of Geoff Johns as the could change things – but the arrival of Justice League Part One next year will likely prove decisive in either changing or consolidating public perception of the franchise. DC’s recent comic-book quasi-reboot, DC Rebirth, offers a heartening example of the potential of such an approach to change fan opinion – with DC’s ‘Rebirth’ looking set to give the company’s comics a major jolt in the right direction – but such a major shift in tone in the DCEU may yet turn out to be too little, too late.
Alternatively, though, there’s also…
The Upside: The DCEU Has Two Hugely Promising Projects On The Horizon…And That’s Not Counting Justice League…
The logic here? This August’s Suicide Squad is about as highly-anticipated as a movie starring a host of C-List Bat-foes (and The Joker) could ever hope to be – and next year’s Wonder Woman stars most people’s favorite character from Batman v Superman, in a period action pic co-starring Captain Kirk.