(Warning: Spoilers for Justice League below)
With the Justice League movie in production, and having seen the movies that make up the DCEU so far, I believe Warner Bros. is about to drop a cosmic-sized bombshell on us. I'll admit that the DCEU has felt a bit rushed in terms of world-building, and to a degree, some of the characters have felt a bit unfamiliar, but maybe, just maybe, this has all been done intentionally.
While comparing the DCEU with the DCU (DC Comics Universe) it dawned on me (sorry, I couldn’t resist): What if a major event already occurred in the DCEU that we haven't seen, and it altered certain aspects of movie-version Earth-1? What if this event wiped out a pre-existing movie-version of the Multiverse?
As I started thinking about major events that took place in the DCU that severely impacted Earth-1 and the Multiverse, only one came to mind — Crisis on Infinite Earths. That’s right, I’m suggesting that the Crisis on Infinite Earths storyline has already occurred within the DCEU.
Earth-1? Multiverse? If you enjoyed the movies but aren't up to speed on your comic book history, don't worry, I got you covered. If you think my theory is bat guano just wait until you get to the part where I reveal who Jesse Eisenberg actually played in Batman v Superman.
The Jeopardy Answer Is 'What Is The Multiverse?'
Prior to the publication of DC’s 1985 mini-series Crisis on Infinite Earths, stories were told about there being alternate versions of Batman, Superman, and other characters. The first story that introduced the idea that these alternate versions of characters lived on different Earths was told in the story "Flash of Two Worlds" published in The Flash Issue 123. In that issue, the current Flash, Barry Allen, ended up meeting the original, 1940s Flash, Jay Garrick. It was explained that Jay came from Earth-2 and that Barry lived on Earth-1. This story opened up the door for there to be multiple Earths, which in turn, originated the idea that a Multiverse existed, and no, there was never a porn parody Earth-XXX.
Crisis On Infinite Earths
That is, until the next crisis, and the crisis after that, and the crisis to the crisis, You get the idea — there’ve been a lot of crises in the DCU.
As you can imagine, having multiple Earths with various versions of heroes, villains, and other characters living on them can get a bit confusing for the readers and the writers. DC launched the 12-part mini-series Crisis on Infinite Earths (1985–1986) in hopes to streamline the DCU making things easier to understand. In Crisis, the Big Bad, the Anti-Monitor, tried to destroy all of the various universes (except for Earth-XXX, just kidding), but was stopped by a group of heroes from various universes including Alexander Luthor Jr. of Earth-3, Kal-L of Earth-2 (the Superman of that Earth), and Super-Boy of Earth-Prime.
Although our heroes were successful in stopping the Anti-Monitor, only five Earths remained at the end of the battle, and they subsequently merged into Earth-1. Conveniently, not many recalled the merging, and life went on as usual even though individuals not native to Earth-1 now existed on Earth-1. It’s important to note that Alexander Luthor Jr. of Earth-3, Kal-L of Earth-2, and Lois Lane of Earth-2 survived the events of Crisis, but sequestered themselves in a place where they could see Earth-1, but not live on it. Also noteworthy (and important to my theory) is that Supergirl of Earth-1 does not survive the event.
Crisis accomplished what it was suppose do by making things easier to understand, but in 2005 Geoff Johns (name sound familiar?) wrote Infinite Crisis, which turned the DCU on its head.
Infinite Crisis (See, Told You, More Crisis)
Here is where things start to get crazy (as if they haven't already). In Infinite Crisis, Alexander Luthor Jr., with the help of Kal-L of Earth-2, free themselves from wherever the hell they were in order to save Lois Lane of Earth-2, who’s dying. Luthor Jr. ends up creating a device that creates a new Multiverse that includes Earth-2. Lois is brought to her homeland in hopes that in doing so she’d survive death. Spoilers, Lois dies sending Kal-L off the deep end to do battle against the bad guy of the story. For the sake of time, I won’t get into who the bad guy is and how everything gets resolved. What you need to know is that Kal-L and Luthor Jr. die at the conclusion of this event. Interestingly, Luthor Jr. dies at the hands of Lex Luthor of Earth-1 and Joker of Earth-1.
Geoff Johns, A Super Man
This story showed Geoff’s appreciation of the Multiverse and for classic characters like Luthor Jr. that may not be popular, but are important to the fabric of the DCU. Geoff’s stories have always incorporated aspects that are strongly rooted in the legacy of DC’s characters. Just look at what Geoff said about Rebirth, his most recent and successful contribution to DC Comics. The guy loves the deep and expansive history of the DCU.
Geoff has had a hand in every DCEU movie made so far. To what extent, I’m not sure, but if you read between the lines since Man of Steel there have been Easter Eggs in the DCEU movies that wink and nod at the history of the DCU. Now that Geoff is President and Chief Creating Officer at DC Entertainment, I think a lot more of the history of the DCU is going to come into play in the movies.
Blah, Blah, Blah, How Does This All Relate To Your Theory, Smallville?
Here are my top five reasons why I believe the Crisis on Infinite Earths storyline has already occurred within the DCEU.
Reason #1: Supergirl Of Earth-1 Is A No-Show
About the time that Man of Steel was released, there was a prequel comic that came out that tied into the movie. In the comic, written by David S. Goyer, Zack Snyder, and — you guessed it — Geoff Johns, we find out that the open pod in the Kryptonian scout ship (that eventually becomes the Fortress of Solitude) was carrying Kara Zor-El, who eventually becomes Supergirl of Earth-1.
To date, we have not seen Supergirl in any of the DCEU movies. In fact, she’s not slated to have her own movie if we look at what’s to come. This could only mean one thing (OK, not really, but for the purpose of this article) — Supergirl is dead, just like in Crisis on Infinite Earths.
Reason #2: Jason Todd Is Dead
As shown in Batman vs Superman, Jason Todd, the second person to don the Robin suit, is dead. Not only is he dead, but he died at the hands of the Joker just like in A Death in the Family storyline that was published in Batman Issues 426–429 (1988). It's important to note that Jason Todd’s death occurred after Crisis on Infinite Earths.
Reason #3: The Introduction Of The Suicide Squad
The Task Force X that we see in Suicide Squad closely resembles the team that came subsequent to the events of Crisis on Infinite Earths. The team that initially came after Crisis was comprised of Amanda Waller, Rick Flag Jr., Captain Boomerang, Deadshot, Enchantress, and others. This may not be a huge smoking gun to support my theory, but I believe it has some merit.
Reason #4: B.B.B.B.O. (Big Blue Bites The Big One)
The Earth-shattering Death of Superman storyline (1992–1993) told in various Superman-related issues is by far one of the biggest and boldest stories DC has ever published. The un-killable was killed and my childhood was destroyed. Again, this story happened after Crisis on Infinite Earths.
Reason #5: My Biggest And Boldest Prediction — Jesse Eisenberg Is Alexander Luthor Jr. Of Earth-3
The impression I got from watching BvS is that Eisenberg-Lex came from a very rich family. One of the scenes in the movie takes place in Eisenberg-Lex’s father’s study, a room that’s not too shabby. In some ways, I got the impression that Eisenberg-Lex inherited LexCorp and was not the founder of the company. I checked the official web page for LexCorp and it is noted that Eisenberg-Lex is the CEO, but it is never explicitly indicated that he created the company. If LexCorp was inherited by Eisenberg-Lex, then that could mean that Eisenberg-Lex’s father was also named Lex Luthor (or he named the company after his son, but in BvS it didn't sound like Eisenberg-Lex had the best relationship with his father). This all leads me to believe that there is a possibility that Eisenberg-Lex’s father was also named Lex Luthor, and that he created LexCorp.
If true that Eisenberg-Lex’s father was also named Lex Luthor, this wouldn't jive with comic book history at all. Lex Luthor’s father was named Lionel Luthor, and if BvS taught us anything, it's that the names of the characters' parents are important (“MARTHA!"). Using comic book history as my guiding light, Lex Luthor of Earth-1 never, ever, had a son; however, Lex Luthor of Earth-3 did, Alexander Luthor Jr. It’s possible that Eisenberg-Lex’s father is Lex Luthor of Earth-3.
I’ll admit that to come to this conclusion means that I’m straying from comic book history a bit because Lex Luthor of Earth-3 died while his son was still an infant, he never created LexCorp, and he never stepped foot on Earth-1. But what if after the Crisis, the Earth-3 Luthor family got folded into Earth-1. I can hear the bat guano chants now, but bear with me for a minute.
Remember when I said that not everyone forgot that Crisis occurred? One of those individuals in the comics was Luthor Jr. of Earth-3. For my theory to work, it's going to have to be Luthor Sr. of Earth-3. Luthor Sr. creates LexCorp, a business that's about protecting humanity, because he witnessed Crisis, wanted to keep tabs on the meta-humans he knows about, and was looking for others that got pulled into Earth-1 with him.
Bat guano! Maybe, but how else does Eisenberg-Lex know about Bruce Wayne being Batman and Superman growing up as Clark Kent? It's because his dad told him. I’ll admit, I’m stretching a bit here, but Eisenberg-Lex was portrayed as someone who is not all there mentally. I believe that Eisenberg-Lex is a little off his rocker because he's not from Earth-1. Dealing with that realization plus the fact that meta-humans are running around messed with his psyche.
To fit my theory back into comic book history, I believe that we haven't seen Eisenberg-Lex's father because Eisenberg Lex killed his father just like Lex Luthor of Earth-1 killed his father, Lionel Luthor. If Eisenberg-Lex is Luthor Jr. of Earth-3 and he killed his father (Lex Luthor of Earth-3), it puts a spin on Crisis on Infinite Earths when Lex Luthor of Earth-1 killed Lex Luthor Jr. of Earth-3.
Get your fill of more DC Easter Egg goodies by watching the Justice League trailer breakdown in the video below: