Zack Snyder's Man of Steel back in 2013 re-introduced the world to one of the most iconic superhero characters ever created, Superman. Attempting to distance itself from the Christopher Reeves movies, Man of Steel is a slightly more grounded, grittier version of the DC hero, but this approach led to a lot of criticism for a variety of different reasons. Not least is the moment that Superman kills the movie's invading villain, General Zod, by snapping his neck. Well, all these years later, director Zack Snyder has provided an explanation as to how he came to this rather controversial decision.
"Even if we understand from this outer perspective that Superman is saving the world being essentially terraformed into another planet, the greater good is being served. It's like an Ozymandias-type scenario when, you know, a big sacrifice is made to save the world and I would say that not even intentionally in this case, Zod is a powerful dude. To suggest you could defeat him without him nearly winning is not realistic at all or the kind of consequence I wanted from my superhero movies."
Zack Snyder explains that he prefers his superhero movies to have consequences, which no doubt many will agree with. What many fans will disagree with however is having the consequences be something that goes against the very core of the character whose story is being told. Still, Snyder justifies Zod's death as being an act that is carried out in the name of the greater good and thus does not go against what people believe about the beloved superhero. Referencing as well his live-action adaptation of Watchmen, Snyder elaborated further on what he likes to see in his comic book movies.
"I don't like this idea where there's no consequence, that these characters get to knock around in our world and that they create and solve these giant problems."
Again, it is doubtful that there are many who wish to see comic book and superhero movies with no stakes, but there will surely still be those that feel Snyder did not tackle these stakes in the right way, and will no doubt continue to have issues with the neck-breaking conclusion that he reached. Still, it is interesting to hear the thought process that led to the Man of Steel finale. There will, of course, still be those who wonder why Superman did not just fly straight up considering he has Zod in a headlock, or maybe even try putting his own, indestructible hand over Zod's eyes in order to stop the beams that threatened that innocent family, but hey, you can't please everyone.
The DC movie universe continues on, with several other upcoming DC movies on the horizon including Wonder Woman 1984 on August 14th, The Batman on June 25, 2021, The Suicide Squad on August 6, 2021, Black Adam on December 22, 2021, Shazam! 2 on April 1, 2022, The Flash on July 1, 2022, and Aquaman 2 on December 16, 2022. This comes to us from Zack Snyder on Twitter who hosted a live commentary for his comic book follow-up Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice.