‘Zack Snyder’s Justice League’ Ending Explained: Epilogue’s Cameos and Dangling Plot Threads

Zack Snyder’s much-anticipated reduce of Justice League landed on HBO Max in 2021, bringing the director’s authentic imaginative and prescient for the DC superheroes to the streaming service. The movie, which is now that can be purchased digitally, got here out greater than three years after Joss Whedon’s 2017 theatrical reduce upset followers and sparked a large, intense fan marketing campaign (reportedly partially pushed by bots) demanding the discharge of the Snyder Reduce.

It is also 4 hours lengthy, so that you’d higher be sitting comfortably with loads of snacks earlier than you dive into Batman and firm’s epic journey. I can prevent slightly time by telling you there aren’t any mid- or post-credits scenes as we have been conditioned to count on in superhero films. As an alternative, the final 20 minutes or so act as an epilogue.

Let’s check out what occurs on the finish of the movie and mull over what it would imply for the way forward for the DC Prolonged Universe. Be warned, full SPOILERS lurk forward like a creepy clown.



Scene 1: Deja vu on Lex’s beautiful yacht

This scene may look acquainted if you happen to noticed the theatrical reduce. After stopping Steppenwolf from bringing Darkseid and the armies of the planet Apokolips to Earth, our heroes return to their lives and usually get glad endings. Nevertheless, a guard at Arkham Asylum discovers some bald man has taken the place of Lex Luthor (who was arrested on the finish of Batman v Superman), giving the supervillain an opportunity to flee.

We discover Lex (Jesse Eisenberg) on a yacht, the place he is joined by Slade Wilson, aka Deathstroke (Joe Manganiello). The mercenary has a grudge in opposition to Batman — it appears the Bat was answerable for Deathstroke dropping an eye fixed — and Lex reveals that the Caped Crusader’s actual title is Bruce Wayne so Deathstroke can kill the hero.

What does it imply?

This one is fairly simple: Batman and Deathstroke’s battle is about to get extra private. Alfred had higher be careful. Lex additionally says he has “extra vital issues” to do — presumably linked to the truth that he is aware of Darkseid is coming. What a scamp.

The scene can also be linked to the scrapped Ben Affleck solo Batman film, which might have featured Deathstroke as the primary villain. It is slightly odd to get a reference to a canceled challenge (which has since been changed by the Robert Pattinson film), however this plot thread could possibly be picked up someplace down the road.

Lex Luthor Justice League

Sneaky Lex Luthor is hanging out on a ship.

Warner Bros/Screenshot by Sean Keane/CNET

A shorter, worse model of this scene performed through the credit of Whedon’s theatrical model — Lex suggests he and Deathstroke kind a “league of our personal” to counter the Justice League. The brand new one sends Deathstroke on a extra targeted, Batman-murdering path reasonably than simply having him be a part of a crew of baddies (or handle an all-female baseball crew).

There’s nonetheless no rationalization for Lex all of a sudden dressing just like the Gene Hackman model of the character, although. 

Scene 2: A visit to the post-Apokolips

The ultimate scene jumps right into a darkish, yucky future (which Snyder beforehand teased in BvS) by which Darkseid’s forces have laid waste to Earth. Nevertheless, there’s nonetheless hope — Batman, Cyborg, the Atlantean Mera, a mohawked Deathstroke (it appears he and Bats buried the hatchet) and Flash have fashioned a resistance group.

And there is another particular person: Joker (Jared Leto), who’s acquired an excellently creepy snigger that appears like a creaky door. There is a ball of stress between him and the Darkish Knight, as he taunts Bats concerning the family members he is misplaced — his dad and mom and his “adopted son.” When Batman warns Joker to watch out, the clown provides slightly extra dramatic spice.

“You want me, that can assist you undo this world you created by letting her die,” he says. “Poor Lois, how she suffered so.”



Warner Bros.

Joker additionally wonders concerning the variety of alternate timelines by which Batman has let the world be destroyed as a result of he lacks “the cojones” to die himself. The clown offers Batman a Joker enjoying card that signifies a truce between them. If Bats desires to resume their beef, he simply must tear up the cardboard.

Batman counters by revealing that Harley Quinn (the Joker’s typically girlfriend) died in his arms, however begged Batman to present the Joker a gradual loss of life when he kills him. Batman additionally drops the F-bomb right here, as a result of this post-apocalyptic scene about loss of life and vengeance wanted to be additional hardcore.

Their plans, threats and profanity all appear to be rendered moot by the arrival of Superman (again in his crimson and blue costume), whose eyes glow a sinister crimson as he prepares to get his laser on. Hope somebody has a lump of kryptonite useful (they do not).

Bruce wakes up from this obvious nightmare in his candy lakeside pad within the current, pre-apocalyptic world and finds Martian Manhunter (Harry Lennix) exterior. The alien hero warns Bruce that Darkseid will probably be again on the lookout for the Anti-Life Equation, and just about affords to hitch the Justice League.

Darkseid Justice League

We get a glimpse of the post-Darkseid world, and it does not like a enjoyable place to be.

Warner Bros

What does it imply?

Tons to unpack right here, but it surely positive does seem to be a setup for some superior sequels (I love seeing realities the place the unhealthy guys gained). The Joker scene was the solely new one shot for the Snyder Reduce — all the pieces else was preexisting footage.

“After I noticed there can be no extra Zack Snyder DC films, my greatest remorse was that there was no Batman/Joker confrontation scene,” the director stated in manufacturing notes. “They each went by a collection of movies and by no means bumped into one another. It did not make sense to me. So, I believed possibly I may treatment that.”

The darkish future scene implies Darkseid returned to Earth in his hunt for the Anti-Life Equation, a mathematical system that may enable him to dominate all life, and took over. You may keep in mind allusions to this round an hour and 40 minutes earlier within the film, when the Kryptonian ship warned Cyborg in opposition to activating the Mom Field. 


Cyborg gave us a have a look at how the darkish future got here to be.

Warner Bros

At that time, we acquired a glimpse of a actuality by which a lifeless Marvel Girl was being burned on a funeral pyre, Aquaman had been impaled by Darkseid and Superman was cradling a charred corpse, with Darkseid looming over him.

We get affirmation that Lois Lane was the corpse, and her loss of life left Superman emotionally devastated sufficient for the massive baddie to dominate his will. It positive seems to be like Lois was killed by Darkseid’s Omega Beam laser eye transfer too, which makes Supes becoming a member of him additional nasty — he actually ought to simply punch Darkseid into the solar. We additionally do not know what function Batman performed in Lois’ loss of life.

Making the scenario even worse is the truth that Lois is pregnant — we see a constructive take a look at in her nightstand through the film. The scenario is fairly just like the one seen within the Injustice video games, by which Superman turns into a ruthless dictator after Joker tips him into killing a pregnant Lois and blowing up Metropolis.

This epilogue additionally hyperlinks to 2 moments in BvS: the Flash’s warning, the place future Flash makes use of his powers to leap again by time and warns Bruce to worry Superman, and the “Knightmare” sequence, by which Bruce goals of a darkish future by which Superman has gone unhealthy. The occasions seen within the Knightmare presumably happen after the JL scene, since Batman is alone, will get captured and is in the end murdered by Superman.

It is not clear why Superman is sporting his crimson and blue swimsuit once more at nighttime future — certainly the moody black outfit he wore after getting resurrected would have been a greater choice? Within the comics, Superman wore a black swimsuit particularly designed to assist him soak up extra photo voltaic radiation after returning from the lifeless. If that is the case within the films, he did not want it by the point of the darkish future occasions. It additionally acts as visible differentiator between the Snyder Reduce and theatrical variations of Justice League.


Again in black.

Warner Bros

Within the years because the theatrical model crammed followers with disappointment, Snyder has confirmed some plot particulars across the Knightmare future. Flash used a Cosmic Treadmill — a time machine he prompts together with his powers — to journey again in an effort to avert the darkish future. When he sees BvS Bruce, he realizes he is gone again too far within the timeline (since Bruce hadn’t met Flash at that time).

The scene on the finish of Justice League presumably takes place earlier than Flash goes again, and the crew is probably going getting ready for his journey by time. Flash additionally seems to be sporting the armor from the Justice League epilogue when he warns BvS Bruce.

Snyder advised Self-importance Honest his authentic plan was for the darkish future timeline to be reversed, however Batman would die. The mantle would have been taken by Bruce Kent, the powerless son of Lois and Clark. 

It is unclear why Joker is critical to undo this crappy future or how Harley died, but it surely’s solely plausible that this model of Batman would finish the clown as quickly as he can — he has no main difficulty with killing at any level within the timeline.

Flash Justice League

He’ll save each considered one of us.

Warner Bros

The “adopted son” line alludes to Robin’s loss of life at Joker’s fingers. You may keep in mind seeing a graffitied Robin costume in BvS — this was meant to be the Dick Grayson model of the character. Within the comics, Joker killed Jason Todd (the second Robin).

Since there are no plans for extra Snyder-led DC films, it is attainable this plotline won’t ever proceed or it’s going to play out in subsequent 12 months’s Flash film. It will see Affleck as Batman once more, together with Michael Keaton’s Batman returning to the model of the character from the Tim Burton collection and Pattinson enjoying a totally new one in Matt ReevesThe Batman. We’d additionally see Martian Manhunter present up in The Flash.

My mind is sleepy now; an excessive amount of time journey and alternate realities. Wake me up when Flash is out.

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