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If you're a fan of comic book movies, then there's a good chance that you're intimately familiar with the idea of the fan theory. Fans love to speculate, and that means they often come up with fascinating connective threads to tie various movies together in a given universe. In that regard, the DCEU is no different. There have been countless fan theories related to the DC Extended Universe since it kicked off with Man of Steel back in 2013, and some of them are pretty damn interesting.
On that note, we have put together a list of some of the coolest fan theories that have popped up online over the last five years. These theories have quite a bit of evidence backing them up, and we think it would be great for future DC movies to return to them at some point. With that in mind, let's kick things off with a theory about how Shazam could tie in with the Superman mythos.
Shazam Met Superman In Justice League
The opening of Justice League presented audiences with a starkly different Superman (Henry Cavill) than the one seen in Man of Steel or Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. He was bright, cheerful and full of hope as he talked to a group of kids who wanted a Superman interview for their podcast. Though nothing has been confirmed, some have theorized that one of the unseen children was Shazam!'s Billy Batson, thus laying the groundwork for Superman to eventually become a mentor to Billy once he earns his superpowers in David F. Sandberg's upcoming movie. If Superman met Billy in Justice League, then Shazam! could retell this same sequence. Doing this would not only tie things together in an elegant way, but it could also allow us to get an answer to the question Superman's favorite thing about Earth, and retcon the bad CGI upper-lip with a clean-shaven Henry Cavill.
Aquaman Saved Clark Kent In Man Of Steel
Long before the DCEU had turned into a proper, cohesive universe, fans had theorized that other heroes were out there waiting in the wings. In that regard, one of the oldest fan theories in the entire DC Extended Universe stems from the oil rig scene in Man of Steel, in which Clark Kent is mysteriously rescued after saving a group of men from the collapsing structure. The theory posits that Arthur Curry (Jason Momoa) was actually the one to pull him from the water (with the help of some whales), and while it wouldn't necessarily create an enormous plot point for James Wan's Aquaman, addressing this theory could help lend an even deeper sense of cohesion to this universe. Besides, Momoa has already stated that the theory is canon (even though that doesn't officially make it so), which means there's inside support to make this a reality when Aquaman's December 21 release rolls around.
Man Of Steel's World Engine Created Flash And/Or Cyborg
Justice League doesn't spend much time worrying about the origin stories of its newcomer heroes. For Flash (Ezra Miller) and Cyborg (Ray Fisher), it mostly boils down to acknowledging that lightning struck the former and the latter was in an accident. With so little information to work with, some fans have come to the collective conclusion that both heroes received their powers as a result of the events of Man of Steel. This theory suggests that Barry Allen was near the chemical cocktail that turned him into The Flash when Zod (Michael Shannon) attacked, and the machine's gravitational powers caused the storm that led him to be struck by lightning -- not unlike the particle accelerator on The Flash TV series. Then there's Vic Stone, who may have been caught in the crossfire when everything went down. None of this has received confirmation yet, but it definitely would help tie several different origin stories together in an interesting way.
Batman V Superman's Knightmare Scene Established The Multiverse
The Knightmare scene in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice confused many casual fans when the film debuted back in 2016 and spurred a wave of debate. Among the theories that have surfaced about the sequence, one of the most interesting of the bunch is the idea that Knightmare does not represent a possible future that is averted when Batman chooses to ally himself with Superman. Instead, this theory suggests that the world of Knightmare is an alternate reality that we get a glimpse of when The Flash travels back in time to try and warn The Caped Crusader. If that sounds complicated, the basic idea is this: the world of Knightmare still exists as an alternate Earth within the infinite multiverse, and it established the idea that Flash can travel between these worlds, which will eventually pave the way for storylines like Flashpoint, and perhaps one day even an adaptation of Injustice.
Green Lantern Was At The Battle Of Metropolis
In Man of Steel, we see several fighter pilots unsuccessfully take on General Zod's forces in jets, which has led some fans to theorize that Coast City's own Hal Jordan was actually one of the pilots to get in on the action. The first DCEU Superman movie already features a supporting female character named "Ferris" (whom many have assumed is actually Carol Ferris), so this raises the definite possibility that Green Lantern was actually present for the Battle of Metropolis, and we just did not see him during the first depiction of the fight back in 2013. Where does Abin Sur fit into all of this? We are still not sure about that, but flashing back to the events of Man of Steel could be a great way to introduce Hal Jordan and show his heroism before ever getting his hands on a Green Lantern Corps power ring.
Batman V Superman Teased Vandal Savage
Zack Snyder's Batman v Superman spins many narrative plates and sets up a lot of future storylines, but one specific storyline relates to one of DC's (literally) oldest villains. Specifically, in the scene in which Bruce Wayne (Ben Affleck) and Diana Prince (Gal Gadot) admire the fake Sword of Alexander, it is said that the authentic version of the ancient weapon is hanging over the bed of the Sultan of Hajar. It's a seemingly innocuous moment that shows off the intelligence of both heroes, but some fans have concluded that the Sultan of Hajar is none other than major Justice League villain Vandal Savage, a millennia-old immortal who has had frequent run-ins with DC's biggest heroes over the years. The character could use redemption after his poor handling on Legends of Tomorrow, so addressing this theory and bringing the Sultan of Hajar into Justice League 2 (perhaps as a member of Lex Luthor's Injustice League) makes perfect sense.
Doctor Poison Created Venom
One of the weirder elements of Wonder Woman's story is the gas that Doctor Poison (Elena Anaya) gives to General Ludendorff (Danny Huston) to make him strong -- so strong, in fact, that he can briefly hold his own against Diana Prince. It's a bizarre moment for an otherwise grounded pair of characters, but some fans have started to theorize that this gas may have deeper DC implications than we had previously realized. Specifically, a theory that surfaced online after the release of Wonder Woman suggested that the powerful gas inhaled by Ludendorff was a precursor to the Venom serum used by Bane, and that Doctor Poison's escape at the end of the movie led her to Santa Prisca prison where she perfected the formula. With a solo Batman movie coming within the next few years, this could be a great way to eventually introduce a brand-new iteration of Bane for the DCEU.
Joker Didn't Kill Robin
This one could go a few different ways, but it all stems from one basic fan theory: Jared Leto's Joker did not murder Jason Todd before the events of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. Part of this is based on the fact that Suicide Squad seems to imply that Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie) is more responsible for the crime than Joker himself, while others have pointed to the fact that Leto's Joker could actually be an older, insane version of the second Robin who went full-Joker after being captured by the original Joker, which would basically be a loose adaptation of Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker. It is still unclear exactly how Joker and Robin's connection will play out in the DCEU, but we are dying to see how future films could (and should) deal with the possibility that Robin's death is not quite as clear-cut as A Death in the Family would have us believe.