DCEU: DC Comics Characters We Hope the Movies Don’t Forget About

The DC Extended Universe had a rocky start. But the franchise finally began to take shape once it focused on building individual characters rather than the world they inhabit. Films like Wonder Woman, Aquaman, and Shazam! have all launched their own series in the DCEU.

Likewise, Birds of Prey builds off of the best element of Suicide Squad, with the return of Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn. So the DCEU feels like it’s on solid footing for the first time, despite those uneven first few movies. Yet, we still hope upcoming movies don’t ignore everything that’s come before.

In particular, here are a few characters we’d like to see continue to play a role in future DCEU adventures.

Jesse Eisenberg discusses 'Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice'
Jesse Eisenberg discusses ‘Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice’ | Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images

General Zod (Michael Shannon)

Man of Steel gets a bad rap among some moviegoers because of its messy, overlong third act. But director Zack Snyder’s film also reinvents Kryptonian mythology and introduces a chilling villain in Michael Shannon’s seething, screaming General Zod.

Zod infamously gets his neck snapped by the film’s end. But there’s still a lot to explore in Zod’s friendship with Jor-El (Russell Crowe). Crowe has said he’s interested in reprising his role. So if Warner Bros. is curious about another supervillain origin story after Joker, Zod is a good candidate.

Lex Luthor (Jesse Eisenberg)

Jesse Eisenberg’s take on Lex Luthor in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice wasn’t just divisive. His performance was roundly criticized for its parade of spastic mannerisms and character quirks. However, taken as a man losing grip on his last vestiges of sanity, Eisenberg’s Lex mostly works.

Now that Lex has completely cracked, the stage is set for Eisenberg’s return to the DCEU. The post-credits scene of Justice League already teased a more traditional — e.g. a bald, more measured, suit-wearing — version of the character. And Eisenberg has expressed interest in coming back. So let’s hope he gets the chance to gently course-correct his off-the-rails performance going forward.

Floyd Lawton/Deadshot (Will Smith)

Although Harley Quinn is front and center in Birds of Prey, moviegoers won’t get a Suicide Squad sequel until 2021. Writer/director James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad brings back a few characters from the first film. But one key DCEU star who won’t be popping up again is Will Smith.

As the mercenary known as Deadshot, Smith brought his usual charisma to the role. Suicide Squad positioned him as a bit of an anti-hero, introducing his relationship with his daughter. Smith reportedly couldn’t commit to the sequel due to a scheduling issue. So hopefully Deadshot can wreak havoc in another DCEU film down the line.

Victor Stone/Cyborg (Ray Fisher)

Ironically, the two pillars Warner Bros. counted on to build the DCEU are its biggest question marks. With The Batman as a standalone adventure, neither Batman nor Superman are slated to reappear in this continuity. Yet, most of the other Justice League members are doing just fine.

Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman and Jason Momoa’s Aquaman have their own solo franchises. And it sounds like audiences will (finally) see Ezra Miller headline The Flash. The only outlier is Ray Fisher’s Cyborg. He was slated to receive his own movie too, but Warner Bros. hasn’t offered any updates. Still, Fisher is hopeful he’ll return as Cyborg eventually. And so are we.