The whole idea behind the Justice League movie is unity. We see this in Bruce Wayne’s quest to unite the Justice League against Steppenwolf and the Parademons. Interestingly, we see it with Steppenwolf himself, and the villain is on a mad quest to unite the three Mother Boxes and gain ultimate power. However, the movie dedicated to unity is already proving divisive among fans and critics alike. The movie got off on the wrong foot when fans discovered that Rotten Tomatoes (owned in part by Warner Bros.) was not going to reveal the score until the Thursday before the premiere. The final score started low and went even lower.
So, what went wrong? Many critics point to issues like poor character development and a severely undercooked villain. However, another major set of problems were the film’s plot holes. There were things that made no sense regarding every League member and every plot point, and not even lightning-fast Flash can move quick enough to put these plots back together again. What are these plot holes? Fortunately, you don’t have to find your own Mother Box to uncover the truth. Just keep scrolling to check out our awesome guide to the biggest plot holes in the Justice League movie.
SPOILER WARNING: The following article contains major spoilers for Justice League.
15. NO FAST FOOD
The Parademons’ whole deal is that they attack people who have great fear. This is why Batman is terrorizing a random criminal near the beginning of the movie — so he can lure one of these creatures out. And it even plays into the film’s climax, when Superman scares Steppenwolf enough that his own Parademons start to devour him.
This is all well and good except for one thing. Why do they never try to eat The Flash? By his own admission, he is terrified through most of the movie. In fact, any given picture of Flash in uniform features his large, terror-filled eyes, with him feeling like he is in way out of his depth. Why do the Parademons leave him alone? We can only assume they don’t like fast food.
14. NOT-SO-SECRET IDENTITIES
Characters like Batman and Superman practically invented the whole secret identity thing. They understand it is vitally important to protect yourself and your loved ones by insuring that their enemies never discover where these heroes hang their capes. Bizarrely, the characters in the Justice League movie don’t care about secrecy at all.
We see Aquaman frequently referring to an unmasked Bruce Wayne in public as a man dressed as a bat. Bruce Wayne doesn’t react, but it’s possible that he doesn’t care about secrecy anymore: his big plan to track down the flash involves giving a random security guard his private number, making it easier to connect Wayne and The Flash. And Lois Lane calls the resurrected Superman “Clark” right in front of some police officers. All in all, these “secret” identities are the worst-kept secrets in the world!
13. MOTHER BOX MIX-UP
Steppenwolf’s big plan is to track down the three Mother Boxes and put them altogether. While the exact mechanics of his plan aren’t very clear, the Cliffs Notes version is that he’ll become like a god and the Earth will be destroyed. The fact that the stakes are this high is why it’s confusing that these Mother Boxes were all kept on Earth.
In an awesome flashback sequence, we see that Steppenwolf was originally defeated by an alliance of different forces. Afterwards, three Earth races took a Box to hide it: humanity got one, the Amazons got one, and the Atlanteans got one. But why didn’t they split these things up more ambitiously? We see a Green Lantern fall in that fight; couldn’t the Guardians hide one on Oa? And we see actual gods in the fight…could none of them take one to Olympus? It just doesn’t make much sense.
12. WORST. PRISON. EVER.
Fans of the DCEU like to argue about how different these movies are from the Marvel Cinematic Universe. However, there is one thing that these movies definitely “borrowed” from the MCU: having cool scenes after the credits! However, the scene after Justice League doesn’t make much sense at all.
We see that Lex Luthor has escaped prison and a bald guy who looks nothing like him has taken Luthor’s place. How did this happen? We know that Batman put him in a highly-secure prison and personally monitors Luthor’s imprisonment. While you can argue Batman was busy with the dimensional invasion, it’s insane to think that a complete stranger was brought into the prison and put in Luthor’s cell while Luthor (one of the most famous men in the world) just walked out with no one noticing!
11. NO SUICIDE SQUAD
One of the things that held Justice League back was the amount of characters. Nonetheless, the plot eventually forces you to ask yourself a question regarding some missing cameos, but where is the Suicide Squad? Suicide Squad made the case that the government needed to have a response team for a possible rogue Superman.
Despite all of this, Justice League shows us how Parademons have been popping up all over the planet without the government noticing. And there are multiple clashes with entire bad guy armies and not a Deadshot or Harley in sight. And the League even has to fight a (temporarily) evil Superman, exactly what Amanda Waller was scared of. Throw in the fact that Batman knows how to quickly contact Waller, and this all just seems like a bizarre oversight.
10. THE CYBORG PARADOX
The most direct plot hole in the entire movie centers around the character of Cyborg. This new hero is not really developed well as a character and instead serves as a talking plot device. It’s only fitting, then, that he causes profound plot holes.
Cyborg reveals to the team that he was transformed into his current cybernetic form by a Mother Box. His father was examining the Box, but it had been dormant for years. Cyborg claims that it lit up after Superman died, and then his father ended up using it to save Cyborg’s life. Just one problem with this account: Batman views footage of Cyborg’s transformation in Batman v. Superman, and it’s before Superman dies. We can probably blame timeline shuffles like this on Barry, right?
9. PREMATURE SUPER SUITING
Many viewers agree that the breakout new hero of this movie is The Flash. He brings in the humor and humanity that Batman v. Superman lacked, and helps bring the whole team dynamic together. Unfortunately, there’s a weird plot hole lurking at the center of his story.
When Bruce Wayne goes to visit Barry, the young man has not started practicing as a hero yet. That’s part of what makes him so difficult to track down — he’s not running around in bright colors. He just selectively uses his powers while wearing his normal clothes. Nonetheless, he has already put together a supersuit, just in time to be recruited by Batman. Throw in the established fact that he’s poor, and it makes less sense than ever that he would build a super-expensive suit for a hero identity that he seemingly did not want to pursue before Bruce came by.
8. MORE LIKE SLOWERMAN
Every now and then, you get a plot hole that can likely be blamed on editing. Considering how many times this movie changed hands, getting some of these kinds of plot holes are pretty inevitable. One of them concerns everybody’s favorite returning hero, Superman.
Despite his relatively brief screen time, Superman is given a complete arc in this movie. We see his resurrection, his madness, his rehabilitation, and then his triumphant return to combat during the final act. However, there is a pretty unexplained gap between him leaving Kansas to go fight and him arriving on the battlefield. Considering that multiple scenes establish Superman is nearly as fast (if not faster) than The Flash, there was a fair chance he could have gotten there before the team. Instead, he arrives in the middle of the battle. Maybe he was taking time to cover up his mustache?
7. DR. STONE HATES LOCKS
Part of what makes the Parademons so creepy is that they kidnap regular human beings so that Steppenwolf can interrogate them. One of the people that we see get kidnapped is a janitor who was cleaning up in the office of Cyborg’s father. The fact that he is so easily kidnapped actually makes very little sense.
The more we find out about Mother Boxes, the more we discover how important his father’s work was. After all, he was working on the most technologically advanced object on the entire planet. However, he apparently does not lock his lab doors and neither does the janitor, which is why a Parademon is able to kidnap the janitor. Wouldn’t you think a lab studying the most important objects on the planet would have auto-locking doors? Maybe this whole thing was just a big insurance scam.
6. THE JANITOR WIFE CONSPIRACY
Weirdly, the janitor’s life is at the center of another weird plot hole. When we first see Lois Lane, she is watching a foul-mouthed woman on TV. She is giving a daytime interview about how aliens kidnapped her husband and how much she’d like to probe them in revenge. It’s a funny scene (though not as funny as Ma Kent calling Lois “thirsty”), but is also makes no sense.
Why? Well, it’s established that the Parademons kidnap the janitor from Dr. Stone’s lab in the dead of night. How would his wife know? It would have required her to see footage of the alien kidnapping. However, a lab that records everything probably locks its doors, and it’s insane to think that the government wouldn’t crack down on people seeing recordings of alien invaders. Maybe she’s a tin foil broke clock and just happened to be right this time.
5. STEPPENWOLF’S BAD TIMING
As near as anyone can figure out, the Mother Boxes all started going crazy when Superman died. The interpretation that the heroes and villains alike come to is that the boxes sensed that the death of Superman made the Earth ripe for plunder, which sends Steppenwolf riding in. However, those Boxes could not have set him up for failure any more if they tried.
We establish that Steppenwolf was defeated ages ago and the Boxes were then hidden. Why didn’t they simply call Steppenwolf earlier? He could have invaded back when Superman was being a moody drifter and joined the Boxes before the would-be hero knew what was up. Better yet, he could have invaded before Superman even landed on the planet. Instead, the Boxes waited until the Earth had a bunch of new heroes, giving the planet a fighting chance.
4. TOO MUCH SUPERMAN LOVE
The other weird thing about the Mother Boxes is that they are attuned to the emotions of the world. Various characters interpret that the Boxes know about the public’s extreme sadness in the wake of Superman’s death. However, the blunt truth is that the world would not have been that sad at his passing.
Keep in mind that Superman died right in the middle of a public smear campaign by Lex Luthor. Is he the hero who saved the world from aliens? Sure. But he also nearly destroyed half of the buildings in Metropolis fighting Zod and was the only survivor of Congress being mass murdered before someone could testify against him. And while he died fighting Doomsday, that monster was created with Superman’s Kryptonian technology. All in all, Superman was at the center of much death and destruction, and would not have been intensely mourned by almost everyone.
3. TWO RESURRECTIONS FOR ONE LOW COST
This next one is a “plot hole” that may very well be explained by the next DCEU movie. Nonetheless, it’s one of those things that you can’t stop pondering once you think about it. By the end of the film, we see that Superman has resumed using the Clark Kent persona. This alone brings up many questions we cannot easily answer.
Remember, Clark Kent had his own public funeral. People saw him in that casket and lowered him into the ground. He was also a public figure who worked for one of the world’s most prominent newspapers. How does he explain coming back to life? Worse yet, coming back to life at the exact same time that Superman does? Unless the next movie Superman is in offers a hell of an alibi, the return of Clark Kent is insane.
2. PARADEMON PARADOX
Another staple of the Marvel Cinematic Universe that the DCEU “borrowed” was the legion of disposable troops. It’s not enough to have cool bad guys — you have to also have a small army of aliens or robots. Justice League gives us the Parademons, and they are at the center of a particular plot hole.
Early in the film, we watch as Batman struggles to fight a single Parademon. His difficulty fighting it is one of the things that informs his later thoughts that he’s starting to get too old for all of this. Later, though, he is taking on countless Parademons as part of the major climax of the movie. Did the Parademons suddenly get weaker and stupider, despite being our central bad guys? Or did Batman suddenly get stronger, despite explicitly complaining about barely being able to keep up?
1. SUPER-SELECTIVE MEMORY
All comics fans know that the clash of misunderstanding between heroes is a major part of any superhero team-up story. In Justice League, we see the inevitable fight between the resurrected Superman and the rest of the League, but the motivation for this fight is bizarre even by superhero standards.
After they resurrect Superman, his mind is a bit scrambled. He doesn’t recognize some of the familiar faces around him, and when Cyborg accidentally attacks, Superman decides to take everyone on. However, he exhibits bizarre selective memory here. He seemingly doesn’t recognize Wonder Woman at all, but he recognizes Batman, despite meeting them both around the same time. And he remembers fighting Batman but not Batman saving his mother (which happened back to back). Finally, he seems to remember all details about his relationship with Lois. Maybe the mustache was the only way he could organize his memories?
Which of these bothered you the most? Let us know in the comments!
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