By bringing DC Comics' two heaviest hitters to-to-toe, the appeal of Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice is obvious. Even so, it seems fans (and director Zack Snyder) are looking for any chance to add another superhero to the mix. Most recently, a pair of green socks led many to believe that The Flash would be joining the party, once again raising the question: will Batman V Superman end up introducing every member of the Justice League ahead of the 'official' team-up?
We've got our own theories on just who will end up being featured or excluded from the Dawn of Justice, and thoughts on why letting Barry Allen sit this round out might be for the best.
First things first: the recent rumors surrounding Scoot McNairy - or his legs, more specifically - are a perfect example of why fans should be taking every glimpse into production with one heaping dose of salt. The only information gleaned from the set photo was that McNairy's character will have something significant happen to his legs, with special effects to be applied later.
Although several outlets and fans took that as an indication of a role as Barry Allen a.k.a. 'The Flash' - and the idea of McNairy's upper body staying static while his legs move as a blur is enticing - there is surprisingly little evidence to support that suspicion. We have our own theories on what role his legs could play in the story (we'll get to that later), but the question of The Flash's presence is one worth asking.
The 'Scarlet Speedster's place within the League is beyond question, so it seems odd that out of the entire team pictured above (with most of the modern members) Barry Allen is the only hero yet to be confirmed or strongly rumored for Dawn of Justice (or to have enjoyed an attempted franchise of his own). So it's no surprise that plenty are waiting for the last yellow shoe to fall. BadassDigest shares our reservations over McNairy's role, but say their sources confirm that The Flash will appear in Batman V Superman, with the entire League "assembled" by the film's conclusion.
Even those words are open to interpretation, but it's worth pointing out that reports of The Flash being included in the film or being cast have been hard to find since production actually began. Rumors of his - and Green Lantern's - involvement circulated while Warner Bros. and Snyder were keeping quiet, but since the studio has laid out its plans and Snyder has started filming, the well has run dry.
That's usually not how substantial rumors progress; just look at the undying reports of Jason Momoa being cast as Aquaman. There seems to be fire to that smoke, at least enough to bring forth reports that WB is already working on a standalone movie script. So why does it seem that The Flash might really be left out of the fight?
Among those who believe that Zack Snyder knows his comics - regardless of whether his style is everyone's cup of tea - it's been assumed that he wouldn't be sacrificing his focus on character drama and conflict for the sake of simply throwing every League member on screen (and with Warner Bros.' extensive movie schedule now official, they've clearly put a long-term plan in place).
We've explained our reasons for feeling that with the same writers and director, Dawn of Justice will be continuing the Man of Steel's story first and foremost. So if we cast all hopes and dreams aside, and take a practical approach to how one builds a superhero team 'event,' what does Snyder need to justify the presence of so many heroes?
What is it that Superman (Henry Cavill) needs? Someone to hold him accountable for his actions in Metropolis - enter an aged, battle-hardened Batman (Ben Affleck). What is it that Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot) needs to enter the world of man? Most likely, an event the size of Kal-El and General Zod's leveling of Metropolis; the same kind of threat that would bring Aquaman (Jason Momoa?) to the surface - or the Atlantean throne. Man of Steel viewers remember what the 'World Engine' did to the Indian Ocean.
What is it Barry Allen needs? A bolt of lightning. It's hard to get past the fact that to include The Flash alongside Superman means largely avoiding his origin or the source of his powers entirely. He isn't tied to Metropolis or Gotham, simply a Midwest forensics expert who starts to acquire odd powers as a result of a sudden infusion with extra-dimensional energy. In other words: in need of serious screen time to be anything more than wedged into the story.
We've already assumed that Cyborg (Ray Fisher) will be introduced in a small role, and Aquaman will likely also appear as a cameo leading into Justice League - a movie that could be coming mere months after Dawn of Justice. It's entirely possible that forensics expert Barry Allen could be yet another seed planted, but the shift in tone (and superpowers) seems like throwing a wrench into the works of a film with enough riding on it already.
If including The Flash - uniform, powers and all - in Dawn of Justice means changes to his origin story, skipping over the discovery or source of his powers, and losing his signature lighthearted humor, then it might be best for fans to simply leave him out for another day. Or another movie.
It was for those same reasons that the leaked DC schedule featuring a Flash/Green Lantern movie seemed like a surprisingly wise move on WB's part; if you have a hero with a cosmic origin to introduce, and a space cop in need of rebooting, why not let both of them share the responsibility? The pair may not possess the same global recognition, but Hal Jordan and Barry Allen are just as common a duo as Batman and Superman.
We'll offer more details on why a film centered on those two would be a unique franchise in WB's catalogue when it's confirmed, but for now, all evidence suggests that The Flash and a new Green Lantern (Hal or otherwise) are the odd men out where Dawn of Justice is concerned. So even if Barry Allen appears in a small role looking for answers - forensic or otherwise - WB is surely in no hurry to even mention Green Lantern for the moment. And for the time being, we wouldn't hold our breath on seeing either of them appear as fans might hope.
What do you think of our reasoning? Could Zack Snyder manage to explain Barry Allen's powers on top of the rest of the film's goals, or would audiences even ask questions once The Flash takes the spotlight? Sound off in the comments.
Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice arrives on March 25th, 2016.
Follow me on Twitter @andrew_dyce for Batman V Superman updates as well as movie, TV, and gaming news.
Source: Badass Digest