*Warning: This post contains spoilers for DC Universe: Rebirth*
Doctor Manhattan is one of DC's most intriguing characters. Introduced in Alan Moore's universally acclaimed graphic novel, Watchmen, he is one of the most powerful and godlike entities in the entire DC universe. As fascinating as he is, could he have had a bigger impact on the comic book world, and consequently, the DCEU?
Originally a nuclear physicist named Dr. Jonathan Osterman, accidental exposure to an Intrinsic Field Subtractor resulted in his reconstruction into Doctor Manhattan, the only super-powered character in the 1986 storyline. But his story arc wasn't left there; most recently, a shocking reveal of DC Universe: Rebirth revealed Manhattan to be the architect of that specific universe.
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In DC Universe Rebirth #1, Manhattan was revealed as being the creator of the New 52 universe. All the while, he killed anyone who may have been about to uncover his presence. That included the murder of Pandora, as well as Metron and Owlman in Justice League #50.
As well as a cool twist linking one of DC's most iconic storylines, it ties in with Manhattan's actions in Watchmen. During his final conversation, he claimed he would be "leaving this galaxy for one less complicated" and when asked if he'd regained interest in human life, responded that he had, but he would possibly "create" new lifeforms.
Did Doctor Manhattan Create The Entire DC Multiverse?
A theory on Reddit has taken things one step further, suggesting that not only did Manhattan create the New 52 universe, he was responsible for the entire construction of all things DC. Multiverses themselves have been part of the fabric of DC storylines since All-Star Comics #3 in 1940, while Crisis On Infinite Earths #1 addressed issues with continuity by reducing the parallel worlds to just five different Earths.
Still, the realm of DC is ripe for multiple dimensions. The theory notes that in Crisis on Infinite Earths #7, Krona — an extraterrestrial scientist — created a machine to observe the origin of the universe. Shortly before the machine was destroyed, he noticed a cluster of stars held in a giant blue hand. A hand that could belong to Manhattan.
Manhattan May Have Created The DCEU
T(? The world of film has already been introduced to Doctor Manhattan in the movie adaptation of Watchmen (2009), which was coincidentally released four years before the first instalment of the DCEU, Man of Steel (2013). If Manhattan is responsible for creating all of the DC Universes, could cinema's version have created the DCEU?
It's certainly a bit of a stretch, but not entirely inconceivable. Zack Snyder directed Watchmen, as well as Man of Steel, Batman v Superman (2016) and next year's Justice League. He's notorious for following the source material strictly, and the comic book theory is correct and Snyder knew of it, he may've decided to implement it.
The beauty of Manhattan's involvement is that it could easily exist as a facet of the DCEU only those behind-the-scenes know about. After all, it would only become an issue if the all-powerful deity decided to interrupt events.
But there's no denying that if executed correctly, the existence of multiverses in the DCEU — and Doctor Manhattan's involvement — would add an interesting extra dimension to the superhero landscape.
Do you think Doctor Manhattan could have created the DCEU?