As fans of the soon to be released Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice ready themselves for what promises to be an onscreen battle of impressive proportions, the unanswered questions keep on growing. Director Zack Snyder and the movie’s cast have done their best so far to keep things relatively hush-hush, despite sitting on one of the most highly anticipated movies of the year.
Upon first consideration, the idea of Batman taking on someone like Superman could seem somewhat silly. After all, through no fault of his own, the Dark Knight is hardly a match for the Man of Steel. At the same time however, every Superman fan out there knows of one element that could immediately level the playing field between these two titans and give Batman the ultimate advantage: Kryptonite, which we know for certain is in the movie.
Given its absence from Snyder’s 2013 Man of Steel, the radioactive green mineral's introduction in Batman V Superman is an intriguing prospect, thanks in part to comments made by Henry Cavill during a recent interview with EW. Though not a direct statement on Kryptonite per se, Cavill had this to say regarding survivor's guilt resulting from Man of Steel’s aftermath:
I wouldn’t necessarily say it’s a survivor’s guilt. I mean, that’s a different kind of thing because he’s above the threat. I think the most difficult thing for him at this stage of the story is that he has just come to terms with the fact that he is really, really quite powerful and he hasn’t found any major vulnerabilities yet, and despite this, despite the enormous power that he has, he still cannot do everything, and he really struggles with that. It’s not just a quick, “Okay, I get it. I can’t save everyone.” That takes a long time to work out.
If Superman has yet to find a major vulnerability, then it’s fair to ask: when exactly will he discover his true weakness? Although it was not used in Man of Steel, Kryptonite did in fact come to Earth with the arrival of Zod. Assuming Kal-El has no familiarity with the material, Superman will be in for quite a shock (not to mention a definite disadvantage) in Batman V Superman when he encounters it for the first time. The last scene glimpsed in the final Batman V Superman trailer shows Batman (Ben Affleck) easily able to block Superman's punch with (presumably) the aid of Kryptonite - much to the latter's surprise - suggesting that this may well be the first moment where Kal-El becomes aware that there is any substance that weakens his powers (much less one from his home planet).
With Kryptonite making an appearance in Batman V Superman, the playing field between the Son of Krypton and Bat of Gotham will be leveled. It’s hard to imagine a situation in which Superman could easily win the battle as long as Batman has access to the potentially lethal green mineral. On the other hand, the Superman comic book mythology is filled with instances in which the Man of Steel has faced his true weakness head on and prevailed. Whether or not he can fight past the crippling and potentially lethal effects of Kryptonite in Batman V Superman remains to be seen, though.
Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice opens on March 25th, 2016, followed by Suicide Squad on August 5th, 2016; Wonder Woman on June 23rd, 2017; Justice League Part One on November 17th, 2017; The Flash on March 16th, 2018; Aquaman on July 27th, 2018; Shazam on April 5th, 2019; Justice League Part Two on June 14th, 2019; Cyborg on April 3rd, 2020; and Green Lantern Corps. on June 19th, 2020.