This article has been updated and adjusted to better reflect the movie in question.

An admirable trait of the DC movies is how connected everything is from promotional work to the films themselves. A common complaint with the series though is that it got complicated really quickly. In reality, everything we need to know is told to us in a very clever way through these films while leaving not much that is unnecessary to the story.  Rather than complicated, I like to think the DC Extended Universe is compressed because nearly everything done and every point made means something in the big picture.

With the release of Justice League, here’s everything you need to know about the story so far as well as some speculation on what you need to look forward to.

  • Humans have interacted with metahumans for centuries between the Norse gods and the ancient Greeks. Even Native American legends sprout from some truth of superhumans protecting the earth. (Wonder Woman)
  • Wonder Woman discovers the history of these metahumans during WWI. She also learns the good and bad traits of humankind and ancient prophesies yet to be fulfilled. (Wonder Woman)
  • The death of Steve Trevor scared Wonder Woman and she goes into hiding, fighting crime only occasionally in the dark. (Wonder Woman/ Batman V. Superman)
  • Several decades later, Superman appears (Man of Steel). His fight with General Zod and his terraformers in America and India left alien debris across the world.

    Justice League The Story So Far
    Superman’s free-agent action as a superhero has led to controversy among the people and distrust in the government that leads to special Senate hearings and the creation of Task Force X
  • The Government tries tracking Superman since he is the most public metahuman whose existence can be proved. Superman opposes the government’s tracing of his activities and urges the government to trust him and know that he is not here to hurt anyone. (Man of Steel)
  • Certain government organizations begin their study and research into other meta-humans (Suicide Squad)
  • Thugs and rising villains alike gather alien material leftover from Superman’s fight with Zod for salvage or power (BVS promotional comics)
  • Controversy over Superman’s work as a free-agent hero led to the government working to find ways to either control Superman or create ways to fight back. The Senate creates boards to discuss Superman and Superman reports his actions to them as he sees fit. Lex Luthor proposes a plan to have a Kryptonite stash for the government to use against Superman if necessary. The Senate doesn’t believe in this action for the most part. (BVS)
  • Amanda Waller and the Army begin setting up a team of people who could take down Superman if needed. She begins compiling a list of meta-humans, likely starting from Lex’s research, and formulates plans to start Task Force X (Suicide Squad).
  • Batman is untrusting of Superman since he is an unknown entity with too many variables. Bruce steals Lex’s files on meta-humans to learn more about Superman. In the process, he finds out who Wonder Woman is and how far back meta-human interaction goes. (BVS)
  • Lex creates Doomsday using leftover alien technology from Superman’s fight with Zod as a way to kill Superman. Lex loses control of Doomsday. (BVS)
  • Superman dies to protect earth from Doomsday’s uncontrolled wrath. Doomsday is killed.
  • Batman and Wonder Woman begin to assemble a team to combat upcoming threats against humanity. (BVS)
  • The Government has been tracing meta-humans for years and they have extensive files on who they are and what they do. These files were used to compile Task Force X (Suicide Squad). Bruce Wayne acquires these files as well to aid in finding the other metahumans that will make up the Justice League.

Speculation: Things to look for in Justice League

Justice League The Story So Far
Batman has already met a future version of The Flash. Pay attention tot he dynamic between the two.
  • Superman’s return will round out the Justice League and make them the single most powerful force in the world and likely across several dimensions. This is a common thread in Justice League stories and is a large reason that world-destroying events seem to increase with the Justice League’s formation.
  • Keep a close eye on Batman and Flash’s dynamic. The two have met before in Bruce’s dream sequence in BVS and Batman will want to know why. Flash likely doesn’t know anything about time travel or the possibilities of it.
  • Darkseid may turn his attention to Earth since it is now one of the most powerful forces known due to the Justice League. Darkseid never comes first but will send agents like the villain of this film, Steppenwolf, to subdue the planet before he takes over.
  • The Government, already wary of Superman, will begin to take measures to fight against the Justice League. This will include beefing up the Task Force X program to include more villains from across the DC universe.
  • Wonder Woman’s involvement with the group will be affected. While ‘Wonder Woman’ was her origin story, Justice League is going to finish it.
  • DC films try to apply a family dynamic to their stories. Man of Steel was about fathers, Batman V Superman was about mothers, so look for more family ideals within the team

 

Justice League is released in theaters now. Check out Gamma Sector’s review and analysis of the film here.