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What new elements could we expect from the new DC universe

We try to anticipate what’s going on in the heads of James Gunn and Peter Saffron before they announce their DC plans.

Warner Bros. Premiere Of “The Suicide Squad” - Arrivals Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic

Over the past few days, there has been a lot of commotion over who is in and out of the James Gunn/Peter Saffran molded version of the DCEU. A report from The Hollywood Reporter set the internet ablaze with talk of canceled projects and actors potentially being moved around. James Gunn took to Twitter to inform everybody that these plans are still being worked out. Deadline then dropped another report stating that a total reboot of the DCEU may be premature. We won’t know for sure until Gunn and Saffan present their plan. However, it may be fun to speculate what some of the pillars of this new DC Universe may be. Here are a couple of thoughts about what new elements can come into play:

  1. Sticking to the plan: One of the main points Gunn stressed in his Twitter thread was that the upcoming projects would be “done in the service of the STORY & in the service of the DC CHARACTERS we know you cherish and we have cherished our whole lives.” That’s great news considering the past history of the DCEU. If you remember, when 2016’s Batman v. Superman appeared to underperform both at the box office and critically, Warner Bros. panicked and tried to pivot. Ever since, it’s been wavering back and forth between the embers of the Snyderverse. I don’t feel the Gunn/Saffron collective will have a problem in this regard, but they have to stick to the overall plan they come up with. It took a long time for the MCU to get to the juggernaut that it is. You can make adjustments, but don’t throw out the entire base because one project may not work.
  2. It’s time to re-establish Superman: There are still questions about who will wear the “S” and what tone he’ll be — there’s no doubt the Superman character has to be a big part of plans in the future. It’s no secret that the DC universe has been Batman-centered for years. (How can you blame them with the successes of The Dark Knight Trilogy and The Batman?) However, it’s time to get the Man of Tomorrow back into the forefront. One of the problems that have been surrounding an updated adaptation of Superman is tone. People want a Man of Steel that inspires hope and the best in us — so give it to them. Keep in mind that you will never recreate the magic of the Christopher Reeves version of Superman. They’ve already tried this with Superman Returns. There’s a way you can invoke those feelings while moving Kal-El’s story into this new age.
  3. Get weird and introduce some new blood: This is right up James Gunn’s alley. In the 2021 version of The Suicide Squad, Gunn introduced the world to the likes of Polka-Dot Man, Starro the Conqueror, and Weasel. Peacemaker became a hit show on HBO Max. Not only does DC have the core seven, but there are so many characters out there that are yet to be seen. Thankfully, we have a Blue Beetle film coming up next year. Doom Patrol has been a successful mix of story and weirdness now in its fourth season. Yes, we all want to see the Justice League, but there are so many other DC characters to explore and enjoy. We haven’t seen Green Lantern yet (or the living planet Mogo. Eh, that might be close to another “living planet” story Gunn has done). Maybe Deadman, Kite Man, or Zatanna?
  4. Trust the Matt Reeves blueprint: One of the most exciting aspects of The Batman is the promise that the Gotham City story would extend beyond the big screen. With the merger, Warner Bros Discovery has committed to the theatrical experience. That’s fine and well. However, you have a streaming service, and you should utilize that as well. We already know that a Penguin show and a potential Arkham Asylum project are in the works. Imagine if they wanted to introduce the Court of Owls as the next Batman film's next villain. You can utilize short series like Marvel/Disney does as an anticipatory tool to get people excited. Empower your creatives to experiment while having an overall story blueprint.