Scenes from the Batman v Superman trailers with Batman in desert garb and Superman as a conqueror have been confirmed as part of a vision sequence. But is Aquaman responsible for the vision?
Here’s what we know about Aquaman’s presence in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.
- He’ll have at least a cameo in the movie.
From the Empire Magazine’s interview with director Zack Snyder, we get, “We will meet Jason Momoa’s Aquaman properly in Justice League – he gets an elusive introduction in BvS (“You’ll understand he exists.” teases Snyder) – before tackling his own adventure.”
- He’ll look like this.
— ZackSnyder (@ZackSnyder) February 20, 2015
And that’s really about it – anything more begins to move from the realms of fact to the realms of speculation. (Though I suppose if you believe the Heroic Hollywood report from last summer we also know where Aquaman was during Suicide Squad, and supposedly that takes place before Batman v Superman, which would give us a hint as to where he still is during Batman v Superman) but that’s a few too many “if…then”s for us to call it a fact.)
So let’s start getting into the realms of speculation, theory, and rumors.
Aquaman Won’t Be Part of the Doomsday Fight.
About now you may be telling me to slow down a bit. Since when was Aquaman ever supposed to be part of the Doomsday fight?
The argument for his inclusion mostly hinges on the idea that Aquaman’s trident is one of the few weapons that might be able to truly harm a version of Doomsday made from the reanimated corpse of General Zod, and that Zack Snyder was dropping hints about the movie’s plot a year and a half ago.
Back in August of 2014 (when Batman v Superman was in the middle of principal photography), a Detroit radio show (Batman v Superman shot extensively in Michigan) received a call from one Zack Snyder, who was calling to complain about the unfair treatment Aquaman was getting from the show’s hosts. Among the cool Aquaman abilities Snyder pointed out was that his trident “could cut the flesh of Superman if they came in contact.” Meaning that it could also cut the flesh of another Kryptonian-based organism like Doomsday.
Seems like a reasonable explanation for why Aquaman might show up then. So why am I saying he won’t?
For one, Wonder Woman is WAY more central to the movie, and her sword can do the same thing. It makes no sense for Aquaman to show up only for the climax of the movie to solve a problem the other heroes could without him there.
And two, let’s imagine for a moment that Wonder Woman didn’t have her sword. Are you really telling me that Aquaman is going to show up only at the climax of the movie, be the deus ex machine solution to Doomsday, and then disappear? How cheap would that feel if DC’s holy trinity couldn’t defeat the bad guy in their own movie? Snyder may have made some questionable decisions in his filmmaking past, but no way he’s that stupid. In fact, from all his public comments, he seems to have a pretty good handle on what fans want to see. And it ain’t Aquaman.
Why the Vision Sequence?
Let’s assume, and it seems like a pretty safe assumption, that Aquaman isn’t going to be part of the climax of Batman v Superman. And in fact, based on the comments Snyder’s about how we wouldn’t get a real introduction to Aquaman until Justice Leageue – Part 1, let’s assume that Aquaman won’t be active in anything super plot-critical.
That leaves us with just a couple options. Either he’ll be referenced and briefly visible as a sort of Easter egg in Batman v Superman but not an active participant in the movie, or else he’s be active in the background of a subplot that contributes to the plot of Batman v Superman but does more to set up Justice League.
That’s why it makes sense (or at least, that’s one of the reasons) that Aquaman would be connected to, or even appear in, the “Knightmare” vision sequence. The sequence fits with the Batman versus Superman narrative in that it could be a representation of Bruce Wayne’s worst fears about Superman. But it’s also full (at least what we’ve seen of it in the trailers) of really specific imagery, including some flying critters that look an awful lot like Darkseid’s parademons. We know that Batman is in his mid-40s in Batman v Superman and long into his career, but Superman and Zod sure seemed to be the first aliens Earth had ever encountered. Someone needed to give Bruce a vision of parademons.
But why does this point to Aquaman? Let’s turn to redditor StreakofBlue for some help:
In addition, remember that sign that said “Kahina double” during Batman v Superman production? In Aquaman’s early years, he was part of a team called The Others and they were basically a group of heroes. One of the members was Kahina. Though she died as soon as they introduced her character in the comics, it was revealed that she had the ability to see future events.
This signals an Aquaman appearance in a couple of ways. Whether it turns out that Snyder and co. have merged Kahina’s powers with Aquaman’s or Kahina is still a discreet character, she’s closely tied to Aquaman. It makes sense that any vision Batman is given by one of those characters would include Aquaman’s brief appearance. Second, (and admittedly this is taking quite a leap, but bear with me) the entire vision sequence takes place in the midst of a desert, but one that looks kind of unnatural. There’s a shot from the Comic-Con trailer of Batman coming out of a bunker, and it sure looks like it could be some coastline sans water behind him.
Or the room that Superman is holding Batman captive in. Look on the wall behind Superman when he first jumps down.
Those are depth marking. Water, or some other sort of liquid, should be there, but sand is all there is. The need for water, for a master of the seas, is subtly hinted at even as the sequence focuses on Batman and Superman. What if the whole sequence terminates (and Bruce jolts awake) with a vision of Aquaman standing on a desert sea floor?
Even if that’s not the case exactly, the whole idea of “Unite the Seven” (see again Snyder’s initial tweet of Jason Momoa in costume) seems to mesh with the need to fight off parademons and the persistent rumors that Darkseid will be the villain of Justice League. The Knightmare vision sequence is the only likely place we’ve seen so for this sort of prophetic call to take place in Batman v Superman. So chances are that’s where Aquaman (and maybe Flash and Cyborg) will be.