In the latest full-length trailer for Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, the two superheroes named in the title are shown meeting one another for the first time at a party. Clark Kent is still trying to figure out his relatively new role as Superman, and still dealing with the fallout from his first great battle with General Zod and the band of Kryptonian invaders. Meanwhile, Bruce Wayne is older, grizzled and hardened after many years fighting a seemingly futile battle against crime on the streets of Gotham.
For fans who are eagerly awaiting the arrival of Batman V Superman, the weeks left until its release seem far too long – especially for a movie that has been so highly anticipated for such a long time. Fortunately we are now in the phase of marketing where there are trailers, TV spots, posters, and an abundance of tie-in merchandise beginning to emerge, offering fresh peeks at what to expect from director Zack Snyder’s latest superhero epic.
The most recent of these is a prequel comic titled “Field Day”, written by Christos Gage with art by Federico Dallochio, which launched in boxes of General Mills cereal earlier this month. General Mills also released two Batman V Superman themed cereals (Superman is caramel crunch and Batman is chocolate strawberry), but the comic book itself is more interesting since it’s presumably in canon with the film, and offers an inside look at Wayne Enterprises. The comic was uploaded to Imgur this week, allowing even cereal haters to dig into it for details.
Here’s a quick run-down of the plot: Zoe, the daughter of a Daily Planet reporter, is on a school field trip around Wayne Enterprises, and finds the guided tour boring. She slips away from the group in search of a bigger story, and enters a Restricted Access area. Yes, it seems that Wayne Industries has pretty terrible security; not only has a teenage girl made it into this section of the building, but so have a group of thieves who are sporting Kryptonian weapons and armor, and want to get their hands on more.
Zoe runs into Bruce Wayne, and both of them are taken hostage by the thieves. When the gang make a move to leave Wayne Enterprises, however, they are stopped by Superman, who demands that they turn over his people’s technology. When they refuse, he takes them by force and Bruce Wayne (whose shadow apparently has bat ears even when he’s not in costume) takes out the thief holding himself and Zoe hostage. Superman hands the criminals over to the authorities, and Bruce takes Zoe back to her school group. It’s all very much cereal comic fodder, but there are some important details to pick out.
Both the official trailers and the mass of test screening spoilers that came out a few weeks ago have made it pretty clear that Lex Luthor has been gleaning whatever he can from the Kryptonian technology left on Earth after Superman’s battle with Zod, but this comic emphasizes the fact that Lex isn’t the only person who’s been digging through the rubble. The thieves say that they snagged the discarded weapons from the battlefield in the wake of the invasion, indicating that other civilians may now possess Kryptonian technology.
More importantly, however, Wayne Enterprises has been studying and developing the alien weaponry; as one of the thieves notes, before providing a demonstration, “[Superman’s] people made these weapons! They can hurt him!” Many fans have questioned how Batman could hold his own in a fight against Superman, and exploiting Kryptonian technology seems like the most obvious strategy.
Presumably Superman knows this, because his mission in the comic is to get Kryptonian weapons off the streets. “My people brought these weapons to Earth,” he says. “I feel responsible for making sure they don’t harm anyone.” We already know that many citizens blame Superman for the destruction of Metropolis, so perhaps he considers missions like this to be part of his reparations. From Batman’s perspective, however, it probably seems more like Superman is trying to make sure no one on Earth has the power to harm him.
“Field Trip” also reveals the fact that Batman has apparently been doing research into Superman’s limitations. When Zoe asks why Superman hasn’t realized that the thieves have hostages, Bruce replies, “The exterior of this building contains lead. He can’t see through lead.” Whether Bruce specially constructed a building with lead-lined walls, or simply selected one to be the new base of Wayne Enterprises development, this line suggests that he deliberately turned his center of operations into a fort that even Superman’s prying eyes can’t penetrate.
Finally, there’s a considerable amount of foreshadowing in the comic. Bruce Wayne tells his captors, “You’re like a lot of people who get power they didn’t earn. You don’t know anything about using it responsibly. Sooner or later, you’ll discover you have more limitations than you think.” He’s obviously talking indirectly about Superman here, but the line could also be interpreted as Bruce talking about himself. After all, his company and his billions of dollars were dropped into his lap at an early age, and without them he wouldn’t have been able to build all his cool superhero gadgets. Perhaps he learned about his own limitations the hard way.
There are three more preview comics circulating in other packets of General Mills cereal, which may offer even more intriguing details. If you’ve come across any of the others, let us know in the comments what you’ve discovered about Batman V Superman‘s titular heroes and their upcoming battle.
Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice will be in theaters on March 25th, 2016; Suicide Squad on August 5th, 2016; Wonder Woman – June 23rd, 2017; Justice League – November 17th, 2017; The Flash – March 23rd, 2018; Aquaman – July 27th, 2018; Shazam – April 5th, 2019; Justice League 2 – June 14th, 2019; Cyborg – April 3rd, 2020; Green Lantern – June 19th, 2020.