3:23pm PT by Graeme McMillan
'Justice League': 5 Key Moments from the Comic-Con Trailer
The drawback of releasing so much footage at the same time is that certain things can get accidentally overlooked.
A case in point, Warner Bros' Justice League teaser from San Diego Comic-Con, which debuted in the same panel as the first Wonder Woman trailer, as well as footage from Kong: Skull Island and Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them. Sure, audiences laughed at the jokes about Aquaman talking to fish and the Flash needing friends, but was there more to see in the teaser that offered clues about the future of Warner Bros' DC Extended Universe?
Apparently so. Closer examination of the trailer reveals new clues about what to expect from the cinematic Justice League, the world they exist in and the larger mythology of DC's big screen universe. Here are five things you might have missed — and one thing that you were certainly meant to.
0:06-0:14: There is more than one way to be a hero. The introduction to Jason Momoa's Aquaman is fascinating in the way it sets up the character not only as a folk legend ("There is a… stranger…" sounds like the start of a fairy tale, almost), but in the positioning of what Aquaman cares about. While Superman (Henry Cavill) is out dealing with alien invasions and Batman (Ben Affleck) is punching criminals into submission in Gotham, Aquaman is quietly keeping people alive by delivering food when they would otherwise starve. Could he end up being the conscience of the group…?
0:27-0:32: The mysterious box being buried is a Mother Box, a piece of alien technology that we've already seen twice before — first in the theatrical cut of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice as the item that transformed Victor Stone (Cyborg, played by Ray Fisher) into… something else on the surveillance footage stolen from Lex Luthor's server, and secondly in the "Communion" deleted scene that ended up in the movie's home release Ultimate Edition.
More interesting, perhaps, is the question of who is burying the box? The answer may be that these are ancient Atlanteans, and not only because the design on the costuming seems to echo the design of the Aquaman costume. After all, if you were an undersea society looking to hide an object of great power, why wouldn't you hide it underground, far from any water altogether…? Of course, the question is whether these woodlands are the same ones that Gal Gadot's Wonder Woman rides through on horseback in the trailer for her own movie…
0:41-0:44: Seeing an entirely-human Fisher as Victor Stone is a surprise; after all, audiences have already seen him scarred and maimed after his accident in BvS, and that was presented as historical footage. So why doesn't he look like Cyborg here? The first option is that this is a flashback to pre-accident Vic to establish the difference in his personality once he becomes part-machine, but there's also the possibility that the cinematic Cyborg will have access to a power-set that was only added to the comic book version in the last two years — namely, the chance to recreate his pre-accident look through technology, and thereby escape the prying eyes of a world still uncertain how to deal with a man who's half-robot. Will the cinematic Victor be a man who wants to hide away from what he is, and what he can do?
0:48-1:00: Forget about the dialogue in the Bruce Wayne/Barry Allen scene for a second, and take a look at the surroundings — Barry's (Ezra Miler) apartment (or secret hideout, as it may be revealed to be) is packed with, well, everything: it has multiple screens for multiple purposes — each is displaying something different, whether it's TV shows (Adult Swim's Rick and Morty is clearly visible in the background in a latter shot) or digital displays of information — while books are laid across everything, the walls are covered in graffiti and the desk overlaid with papers and tools. It looks like the home of someone who gets easily bored — which only makes sense for a man who can move faster than anyone else alive. No wonder this guy needs friends.
1:26-1:29: When Bruce throws the Batarang, two things happen. Most obviously, we get to see the DC version of super speed, which follows the X-Men school of showing the audience what the speedster sees, with the added benefit of some lightning effects that are likely an effect of the Speed Force in action, but take a look at the far right of the screen for a second. Notice something unusual about those shoes? It's Barry's in-progress Flash outfit, complete with wings on his ankles — something that is taken from the costume of the original comic book Flash, Jay Garrick; the Barry Allen comic book costume has wings at the top of the boots, midway up his calves.
And also… Where is Superman? His presence — smiling, no less — on the promotional image confirms what everyone expected after the conclusion of Batman v Superman, that his death is only temporary, yet he was entirely absent from the teaser, even when we saw the rest of the team together. Is there some reason he's not present? What if he comes back from the dead… changed in some way? After all, there have been multiple times that Superman has fallen under the thrall of villains in comic books of the past. Could he be the main threat of the movie before recovering and joining the team…?
Justice League will be released Nov. 2017.