The DCEU is being launched at full pace. The casting is already half-set, the scripts are being written, and released dates have been announced! While this is good and all, there is a true spirit of the DC universe, and it needs to be maintained in order to make the DCEU the best it can be.
The Foundation Of The DC Universe
So how is the true spirit of the DC universe being maintained? Familiar plot lines? Epic camera shots? Well-detailed costumes? As interesting as these would be, it's actually none of them. The foundation of what makes the DC universe so special is the characters that make it. They are so crucial, that even one character's bad portrayal — or the lack of their presence altogether — could drastically reduce the quality of the DC universe. This could clearly be seen if you have witnessed the hate toward Jimmy Olsen's death in Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice.
Since the characters are so important, this means that the DCEU needs them in order to thrive — or even to survive for that matter. After all, if the DCEU is without its essential characters, then it's not maintaining the true nature of what makes the DC universe so special. However, we do have an ever-expanding character roster and the future of these characters (such as Batman, Wonder Woman, Aquaman, etc.) seems promising! Although this is true, there is one very essential figure that is still missing from the big picture: Jor-El.
Jor-El is the birth father of Superman (or Kal-El, as his identity was on Krypton), and has been his father-figure in guiding Superman to take the steps to become the greatest hero the world would ever see. Throughout the comics, he has always been the "go-to man" for Superman whenever he has personal struggles as Earth's hero or whenever there is a concern regarding Krypton and its remnants. He is not just a father to Superman — he's his mentor and guide.
With such an important figure to Superman, shouldn't he likewise be important to the DCEU? To simply put it, yes. Warner Brothers is shifting the direction of the DCEU to a brighter tone and a more hopeful outlook. This means that Jor-El would be essential to bringing back the greatest quality of Superman and the beauty of the DC universe. Despite all of this — while he has had both an appearance and an impact on the DCEU — there is just one problem:
Jor-El Is Gone
If you have seen Man of Steel (2013), then you know that Jor-El was primarily stored as a Kryptonian AI inside the command key he sent with Kal-El to Earth as a baby. When Clark Kent (Superman) inserted the command key into a slot in the scout ship (a.k.a. the Fortress of Solitude), Jor-El was download to the mainframe of the ship. Further into the movie, Superman and Lois went aboard General Zod's ship, and they used the command key there as well, which downloaded Jor-El into the ship's mainframe. He then allowed Superman and Lois to escape the ship. Later, Zod erased Jor from the scout ship's mainframe and Zod's ship was sent back to the Phantom Zone (along with Jor-El's program).
At this point, the scout ship no longer has Jor-El, but Zod's command ship does. The real question that arises from this is: Was Zod's ship actually destroyed? The surprising answer is no. True, the ship can take damage (after all, the command ship was impacted by the ship that brought Kal-El to Earth, and it was sucked into the Phantom Zone from the inside of it), but it's possible that at least some fragments of the ship survived, with Jor-El being kept intact.
The way I see it, there are two possibilities. One is where Superman would somehow end up in the Phantom Zone and find the remnants of the command ship, and thus find Jor-El. The other is that the command ship (or at least enough of it) could be brought back from the Phantom Zone by some phenomena, and Superman would end up encountering it again and finding Jor-El. In either case, he would find a way to bring his father back to the Fortress of Solitude and then communicate with him like he always did in the comics.
There is one thing that may prevent Jor-El from coming back. Since Zack Snyder was willing to kill off Jimmy Olsen for good (or maybe not?), that would imply that he has no intentions of bringing Jor-El back to the DCEU. While it isn't actual fact that Snyder will keep him in the grave, he has proven to be somewhat predictable with his storytelling format (I used it to predict the whole Doomsday story in Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice).
Will It Happen?
So could Jor-El be brought back to the DCEU and have a solid role in it again? The theories above would have me say yes. Zack Snyder's style with his stories would say otherwise. Despite both of these, the true answer lies with the writers and directors that mold the DCEU into what we will see. Hopefully, they might realize the true importance of Jor-El and include him in the future of the DCEU.