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The Cryptic Reason James Gunn Had For Leaving Batman And Cyborg Out Of The Peacemaker Finale

Batman and Cyborg in Justice League posters
(Image credit: Warner Bros.)

Warning: SPOILER ALERT for the Peacemaker episode “It’s Cow or Never” are ahead!

When Danielle Brooks’ Leota Adebayo called her mother, Viola Davis’ Amanda Waller, in “It’s Cow or Never” to see if the Justice League could help the Peacemaker gang prevent the Butterflies from transporting The Cow, i.e. their food source, to another location, she was told there wasn’t enough time. Sure enough, it wasn’t after the Peacemaker Season 1 finale’s climactic battle finished that Superman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman and The Flash arrived at the scene. However, to the disappointment of many fans, Batman and Cyborg were nowhere to be seen, and Peacemaker creator James Gunn had a cryptic response when asked about their absence.

The fact that the Justice League showed up at all in Peacemaker was surprising, and while Superman and Wonder Woman were portrayed in the shadows by stand-ins, Jason Momoa and Ezra Miller briefly reprised Aquaman and Flash, respectively. But on the subject of why Batman and Cyborg weren’t around, here’s what James Gunn had to say to Variety:

You know, I don’t know what I can — there are reasons for it, but I’m actually uncertain whether I can say what those reasons are. It might have to do with future stuff.

To be fair, it’s not like the entire Justice League team needs to respond to every threat that emerges, so those who watched the Peacemaker Season 1 finale can just think up their own reason for why Batman and Cyborg stayed behind. As for the real life reason why Batman and Cyborg couldn’t be present, James Gunn didn’t provide any specifics outside of indicating that the decision came from high up in the Warner Bros./DC hierarchy.

What’s even weirder is that an actor named Matt Turner revealed on Instagram that he was the Batman stand-in for the Peacemaker episode, and there was someone on set playing Cyborg too, but they were both scrubbed from the final edit. So this isn’t just a matter of James Gunn being told from the get-go that he couldn’t include Batman and Cyborg; originally the writer/director did plan for them to show up, but was told after shooting was done that they needed to be removed. Maybe someday we’ll learn why this happened, but for now, the parties in the know are staying tight-lipped.

As far as what the future holds in store for Batman and Cyborg in the DCEU, that’s complicated. This November’s The Flash will see Ben Affleck and Michael Keaton reprising their respective versions of the Caped Crusader, and other than a strange comment from Ezra Miller, all signs point to this movie being the final time Affleck dons the cape and cowl. Starting with Batgirl, it looks like Keaton will take over as the DCEU’s Batman, while Robert Pattinson’s Bruce Wayne exists in a separate reality.

Regarding Cyborg, there was a time when the character was going to lead his own spinoff movie and appear in The Flash in what Ray Fisher described as a “much larger part.” Cut to today, the former project has since been shelved and his appearance in the latter project was scrapped. Fisher also said in late 2020 that he “will not participate in any production associated” with DC Films president Walter Hamada due to what happened during the Joss Whedon-helmed reshoots on Justice League. So for now, it doesn’t appear as though we’ll see this version of Cyborg in the DCEU anytime soon, if ever again.

Back to Peacemaker, the HBO Max series has been renewed for a second season, which is a relief considering all the questions left behind by the Season 1 finale. James Gunn will write and direct all of Season 2’s episodes, and we’ll keep you apprised on how this sophomore outing is coming along alongside our coverage of other returning TV shows.

Adam Holmes
Adam Holmes

Connoisseur of Marvel, DC, Star Wars, John Wick, MonsterVerse and Doctor Who lore. He's aware he looks like Harry Potter and Clark Kent.