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Even though he’s one of the most power beings in DC Comics lore, Darkseid, formerly known as Uxas, nonetheless requires minions to carry out his bidding. In the DC Extended Universe continuity, Darkseid sent Steppenwolf on his behalf to seize Earth’s three Mother Boxes, as depicted in the theatrical cut of Justice League. Zack Snyder’s Justice League, a.k.a. the Snyder Cut, will tell a different version of how that invasion unfolded, this time with Darkseid directly involved and searching for the Anti-Life Equation. But we’ll also meet another servant of Darkseid’s: DeSaad, voiced and motion capture-performed by Peter Guinness.
Longtime DC Comics fans, especially those familiar with the New Gods/Fourth World mythology, know DeSaad chiefly as Darkseid’s master torturer, but what can we expect from him in Zack Snyder’s Justice League? Well, apparently involves a unique way of communication. Here’s what the filmmaker had to say about DeSaad’s role in the upcoming HBO Max exclusive while breaking down the new Snyder Cut trailer on a Vero stream:
Desaad is, in the movie, acts as the go-between between Steppenwolf and Darkseid. He's the agent that Steppenwolf interacts with in his conquest of Earth, to give him updates, and they interact through this super cool hologram. I won't describe how it's done, but it's crazy. He offers us a lot of backstory about Steppenwolf and Darkseid's relationship, and then also his own ambition, in some degree. But he's scary.
Although Darkseid’s presence was first teased in the DCEU through Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice’s Knightmare future, he was only mentioned once by Steppenwolf in Justice League’s theatrical cut, and I wouldn’t blame the average moviegoer unfamiliar with the comics for not understanding this was an actual individual. This time around, it’s being made abundantly clear that he’s is lurking behind the scenes, but rather than Steppenwolf communicating directly with Darkseid, DeSaad will act as Darkseid’s proxy back on Apokolips. The set-up sounds similar to how The Other spoke on Thanos’ behalf to Loki during The Avengers.
More importantly, evidently this method through which Steppenwolf and DeSaad talk to each other is cooler than your average hologram. Zack Snyder stopped himself from spilling too many of the those particular beans, so unless another Snyder Cut trailer provides a little extra insight, we’ll just have to wait until the movies’s release to get the full picture on this communication setup. I’m specifically curious to see how it compares to the way Lex Luthor communicated with Steppenwolf in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice’s Ultimate Edition.
DeSaad will also be handy to have around to shed light on the dynamic between Steppenwolf and Darkseid in Zack Snyder’s Justice League. In the comics, the former is the latter’s uncle, so presumably that familial bond is still in place in the DCEU, and we’ll learn why Steppenwolf so subservient to Darkseid. It’s also unsurprising to hear we’ll receive some insight into DeSaad’s personal ambition, considering how he’s known for being a schemer and treacherous.
We’ll learn the full scope of DeSaad’s involvement when Zack Snyder’s Justice League premieres on HBO Max as a four-part miniseries next year. Don’t forget to keep track of what DC movies are heading to theaters in the near future with our comprehensive guide.