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So a couple years back there was this little Superman movie called Man of Steel you might have heard of it. There was a lot of hype. There was a lot of hope. In the end it just didn’t work for a lot of people. While there were a number of problems, the the biggest issue for most was the ending. The final battle between Supes and Zod had serious issues. Well, Zack Snyder is now making public comments about the controversial ending, and he says it all makes sense.
By the end of Steel much of Metropolis is destroyed and, we assume, thousands of innocent civilians are dead. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly Snyder said that the consequences of the battle were the whole point and that he was shocked at the reaction the ending received.
I was surprised because that’s the thesis of Superman for me, that you can’t just have superheroes knock around and have there be no consequences.
It turns out that the battle does have consequences, as it will be the driving force behind Batman’s desire to take down Superman in the upcoming sequel, Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice. Ben Affleck is also apparently a fan of the ending, adding that way it was the response to the violence was something that attracted him to the sequel.
One of the things I liked was Zack’s idea of showing accountability and the consequences of violence and seeing that there are real people in those buildings.
It’s an interesting direction to take the film to be sure. It appears Batman may play the role of audience proxy for anybody who didn’t like the way the last film ended. It certainly makes sense as a motivation for Batman, in addition to the deaths of the innocent people Superman also ended up killing Zod, a move which Batman would also not approve of. While the trailer to Dawn of Justice has certainly showed us that many of the citizens have turned on Superman, it seems like the audience will be expected to do the same. Maybe Superman really is the villain of the piece.
In the end, it’s probably good that, one way or another, the ending of Man of Steel is going to be dealt with in Dawn of Justice. There are a lot of Superman fans out there that need closure.
The idea that super-powered people beating the crap out of each other can’t be done without serious consequences is a worthy topic for these films to cover, but it’s not the only problem the ending had. For many people the problem was not that the destruction occurred, but rather that Superman did very little to try and prevent it. At no point does he stop punching Zod to try and save somebody’s life. The battle has consequences, which Superman never stops to consider.