Superman: 15 Things You Didn't Know About The Black Suit

Comic fans around the world are abuzz with anticipation of the new Justice League movie. As one of the premier titles in all of comics, Justice League has a lot of hype and even more expectations surrounding it.

The excitement reached maximum capacity with the newest trailer being conspicuously absent of Superman. Fans everywhere believe this means they are saving the highly anticipated black suit reveal for the movie itself.

The suit is not known to most casual fans since Superman usually tends to sport his traditional suit most of the time. This leaves many fans wonder wondering: what exactly is this new outfit for? Could it be a reflection of a new edgy attitude, or simply a new look for a younger crowd?

Director Zack Snyder has taken liberties with the comic continuity in the DC films thus far, making it hard to say exactly what the arrival of the black suit means, so we have compiled a list of facts and possibilities.

Here are the 15 Things You Didn't Know About Superman's Black Suit.

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15 It Absorbs Sunlight At An Accelerated Rate

Superman, like all Kryptonians, receives his power from a yellow sun, such as the one in our solar system. His body acts similar to a battery, absorbing yellow sunlight to power himself to the god-like levels we know him for.

The black suit is able to harness this Kryptonian ability and take it up several notches, absorbing and converting yellow sunlight at a rate much faster than what naturally occurs for Superman.

Combined with his natural traits, Superman in the black suit is a super battery with a majorly upgraded storage tank. One might think this means that Superman will come back stronger than ever, but they would be mistaken. Although the black suit can absorb more sunlight, unfortunately, its purpose is not to help him kick more butt...

14 It Isn’t Meant For Battle, But For Healing

Black Suit Superman Justice League Cavill

After Superman’s epic battle with the mighty Doomsday, he was completely drained of all his power and energy and was seemingly dead. When the Man of Steel returned, though, he was wearing a new black suit and looked as healthy as ever.

It turns out that this wasn’t a new means of combat or protection, but, instead, the black suit acts as a kind of incubator for severely injured Kryptonians. So, unfortunately, the ability to absorb more sunlight does not translate to him being able to actually wield more power than he already can.

Clark needed this suit if he had any hope of returning; that, and his original suit was torn to shreds in the Doomsday fight. Something is strange about it, though, as he was healing at his Fortress of Solitude, the suit was there the whole time, which possibly means something else...

13 It Means Someone Stole Superman’s Body

Superman lay seemingly dead in the streets of Metropolis in an event that shook the entire DC universe to its core. As befitting of the greatest superhero of all time and pop culture icon, a very public funeral was held for Superman with almost every hero in attendance.

Superman's body was inserted into a Mausoleum in front of a large crowd, so how was he able to recuperate far away in the Antarctic? The only possible answer is that Superman’s body was never in his coffin to begin with.

With the DCEE still relatively young, the floor is wide open for a number of potential candidates to fill the role of the body thief, yet we still don’t know why the suit was at the Fortress, though there are countless possibilities.

12 It Possibly Belonged To His Father

Russell Crowe as Jor-El in Man of Steel

One might wonder why the black suit only shows up now, of all times, when it was apparently at the Fortress of Solitude when Superman arrived there. The explanation might be that Superman has been keeping it as a memento of his parents.

The black suit bears the sigil of the House of El, Superman’s family on Krypton. Additionally, it is made of the same alien materials as his traditional costume, so we know that it came from Krypton and that it's not a fake.

We’ve seen Superman’s father wearing his own black suit several times. In 2013’s Man of Steel, Jor-El wears a more armored version of the black suit, and in the classic Superman The Movie, we see Marlon Brando in the role wearing a more casual version of it.

With so many differences across the comics and films, we can’t be sure which way Justice League will go with it. Could it be that the Jor El sent the suit with his son in case of an emergency? The possibilities are pretty endless.

11 It Could Be Just The Powered-Down State Of His Original Suit

Superman Business Suit Shirt Pull

Though we have never seen Superman’s suit change colors before our eyes, some fans theorize that the black suit is just what happens to the normal Superman suit when Supes loses of all his power.

It’s not so far fetched to think about. The suit may be a reflection of Supe's power state, especially since it’s uncertain that Jor El managed to pack a second suit for his baby boy when he shot him down to Earth.

This has not been the case in the canonical Superman stories thus far, but it can easily be inserted into the DCEU without much explanation. This possibility is not the one that fans are most looking forward to, but regardless if Superman's new suit is new or not, the appearance of the black suit has several serious implications.

10 It Means Crime Will Have Increased Significantly By The Time Superman Returns

GOG, Superman Villain

As one would imagine, the loss of Superman from the active roster of heroes is an immeasurable blow for crime fighting in Metropolis and the DC universe at large. Even if Superman isn’t fighting directly, his mere existence acts as a major deterrent for most criminal individuals and enterprises.

The other heroes are still recovering from the events of Man of Steel, and therefore the struggles against the other supervillains are exacerbated without Superman. With him out of the picture, we can well see a full court press by the the supervillains in DC, perhaps uniting like never before to seize the opportunity and gain as much power as they can, spreading the heroes thin and requiring the formation of the Justice League.

Further planned films for the DCEU point to this happening and, if this likely scenario comes to pass, the League had better be at their best.

9 Superman Will Be Much Weaker When He Comes Back

Ever the hero and protector of Earth, and knowing full well how important he is, Superman’s first conscious thoughts in incubation will undoubtedly be how fast he can get back into action.

However, he must balance this with being reasonably certain that he will be effective, since he’s coming out after a fight that brought him to the edge of death. The other conflicts happening are strong enough to push the rest of the heroes far, and he’ll need to bring major power with him upon return.

Kal-El compromises his own safety and decides that 65 percent of his full power will have to do, as the consequences of his absence continue to spiral out of control. Granted, 65 percent is still immensely powerful for Superman, but it isn’t as reassuring as we would like. The negative effects of the black suit also fall into the realm of aesthetics, since...

8 It Is Unfortunately Accompanied By A Mullet

Superman Resurrection Black Suit

Recovering from a battle with an enemy powerful enough to kill a god is not something that happens overnight. Even for the mighty Superman, it’s going to be a while before he is back to anything that approaches normal.

The aforementioned problems with Superman’s absence are all very serious, but few fans expected what they got with his triumphant return. Not bothering to think that he ever needed a barber or even a trim, they collectively chortled when Superman returned with the most dad-rocker mullet they’d ever seen.

He kept his hair long for a while -- until he married Lois Lane, but fans to this day joke about it. It’s a testament to his popularity and staying power that Superman is probably the only character whose return cannot be hampered by an extremely horrible haircut.

7 He Wore It During The Flashpoint Storyline

The Flashpoint story is among the most significant in comic history. It spawned a new canonical universe dubbed The New 52, and resulted in major changes to most characters.

Superman is one of them, and in this parallel universe, his rocket crashed into Metropolis instead of Kansas, where he was captured and raised in captivity as a weapon. This young Superman is wearing the black suit.

Additionally, the Flashpoint storyline has already been confirmed for the DCEU, meaning there will be alternate versions of characters in the near future. Since Flashpoint is central to many timelines, the way the suit can be implemented in the films is wide open and isn’t  limited to Superman returning as he was, or even returning at all.

The black suit is also associated with some incredibly powerful villains who can pose a huge threat to Earth.

6 It Could Foreshadow The Arrival of Darkseid


The idea of an evil Superman was firmly established in the DCEU as the basis of Batman v Superman. However, the power to rain untold destruction across the whole world and go virtually unopposed is just never going to sit well with some people, even if Superman is a great person.

What better power would there be for a villain to harness and use to his or her own ends? The idea became a reality several times in comics, so it’s a pretty safe bet to think that it can happen in an upcoming film. In The New 52 timeline on Earth 2, the supervillain Darkseid managed to clone Superman and mold the double into an obedient instrument of destruction.

The clone, called Brutaal, wore a version of the black suit that was distinct from Superman’s. Batman V Superman already showed a possible future that hinted an invasion by Darkseid, so it’s not a stretch to think this can come to pass with clone Superman leading the charge. 

5 It Could Mean The Arrival Of Superman Prime

Superman Prime (formerly Superboy Prime) existed pre-Crisis of Infinite Earths on Earth Prime, and his origin is close to the real Superman’s, but some differences-- as well as cosmic events far beyond his control-- molded him into something very different than the Clark Kent we are used to.

He didn't original start off as a villain, but in the time between the two Crisis stories things changed drastically. Angry and bitter at the destruction of his universe, the then Superboy Prime became consumed with rage and continued to spiral downward mentally until his anger was all he had left.

Worse yet, Prime is a super version of all other Kryptonians, wielding enough power to fight and defeat the entire Lantern Corps and move planets out of orbit. It took imprisoning him inside a sun to stop him.

Always wearing a black suit of his own making, he is a psychopath with a penchant for going completely out of control, and is a perfect choice for a villain strong enough to fight the Justice League.

4 Superman Wore It While He Was Raising His Son

One of the more recent storylines that has received high critical and fan acclaim is 2015’s Superman: Lois and Clark series. This story focuses on the time after the events of Convergence, during which the original Superman and Lois, along with their son Jonathan, managed to avoid the Flashpoint reboot and exist on an alternate Earth.

With a real chance to raise their son with as much of a normal upbringing as possible, they decide that they will exist in the new world as a family. During this time, Superman operates in secret for years while raising his son with Lois.

Using Lois’ military connections, Superman is able to get ahold of a black suit and, along with growing out a full beard, it becomes his new official uniform while he is off being a secret dad.

3 It Could Be A High Tech Weapon

Superman’s suit has had many incarnations over the years. From a simple cloth outfit to more protection-based designs, we’re never exactly sure of the details until we see them.

Man of Steel even had a Jor El in a full battle suit during his fight with General Zod. One thing is for certain: Kryptonian technology is is still largely unexplored and its uses are untested on Earth.

A villain like Lex Luthor is exactly the kind of character who would covertly acquire some of this technology after the event of Man of Steel and use it to maximum efficiency.

The New 52 Superman’s suit, though not black, has advanced Kryptonian biotech that is coded with his DNA, but there’s nothing stopping Warner Brothers or Snyder from adopting its function for the new suit.

This would be a perfect time to introduce something new and memorable to the ethos of Superman suits by having a high tech version of the black one make its debut when Superman returns.

2 It Was Used To Recreate The Original Superman Suit

Henry Cavill and Melissa Benoist Superman Supergirl

The consequences of the Death of Superman story didn’t end with the titular event. After the fight with Doomsday, universe altering events began to happen, including the emergence of four "Supermen" who took up the mantle of hero, or claimed to be Superman himself.

The most formidable of these was Cyborg Superman-- often shortened to The Cyborg-- who harbors a deep, personal grudge against Superman.

Since Clark was believed dead, The Cyborg took the opportunity to deceive the public, and even the White House, into trusting that he was the real Superman. He then used this trust to betray them all and kill millions in the infamous destruction of Coast City

. In a climactic battle, the real Superman was able to destroy The Cyborg’s body, and Supergirl used the black suit he returned with the recreate his original suit.

1 It Was First Teased In Man of Steel

During 2013’s Man of Steel, General Zod explains his plan to remake Krypton on Earth to Superman, with the catch being that Earth as we know it must be destroyed. While being told this, Superman has a lucid vision of a post-apocalyptic Earth and he sinks into a pile of skulls and his suit seems to get darker.

Though the movie itself is dark, the repeated instances of teasing the audience with the suit make it quite possible that the suit seemingly turning black is deliberate.

Almost exactly one year previously, Henry Cavill teased a close up shot of the black suit on Instagram, and the absence of Superman in the new Justice League trailer was certainly deliberate. It seems that Warner Bros. and Snyder are taking their time and waiting for the perfect moment for the most anticipated reveal in recent Superman history.


What do you think could happen in Justice League? Can you think of any other facts about Superman's black suit? Let us know in the comments!

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