5 Things You Need To Know About The Movie’s Rumored Villain, Ultraman

SUPERMAN will be DC Studios’ first DCU movie and an incredibly important first step in rebooting these characters. Should it perform as poorly as the likes of Shazam! Fury of the Gods and The Flash, then this new shared world could be over before it’s even begun. 

By the time SUPERMAN is released, Peacemaker season 2 and Supergirl: Woman of Tomorrow may already be in production, but there’s no way Warner Bros. Discovery will forge ahead with those ambitious DCU plans if this opening chapter doesn’t turn at least a meagre profit. 

James Gunn has assembled an impressive cast and a new rumour has now claimed that the movie will pit the Man of Steel against an evil clone of himself inspired by Ultraman. 

It’s a bold move when the likes of Brainiac and Mongol are there for the taking, but who is Ultraman and how could he be used in SUPERMAN? By clicking the “Next”https://comicbookmovie.com/”View List” buttons below, you’ll find everything you need to know about the villain…

5. Earth-Three’s Superman


Introduced in 1964’s Justice League of America #29, Earth-Three’s Ultraman relies heavily on Kryptonite to increase his powers, often gaining new abilities with each exposure. 

Unlike what we’re now expecting to see in SUPERMAN, this Ultraman hailed from a different reality and it’s unlikely Gunn will head down the Multiverse route after The Flash bombed (not to mention the concept’s declining popularity). 

Something that could be relevant to the DCU, however, is the fact Ultraman was eventually defeated after ingesting too much Kryptonite. His body was overwhelmed by all the new powers, leaving him frozen in place.

4. Teaming Up With Lex Luthor


A couple of decades after he was first introduced, Ultraman found a new ally in Lex Luthor. Well, two of them, to be precise. Versions of the villain from Earth-One and Earth-Two joined forces with Ultraman to destroy their respective worlds’ Superman.

At this point, Ultraman was a full-blown evil Superman and again played a pivotal role in many Multiverse stories – Crisis on Infinite Earths, for example – due to the fact he hailed from Earth-Three. 

This short-lived alliance with Lex could serve as a basis for whatever Gunn has planned for SUPERMAN, though it will be as the villain’s creator in the DCU. With that in mind, we’d expect the movie to pull at least some inspiration from Bizarro too.

3. Reintroduction As Anti-Matter Ultraman


We’re now jumping to the late 1990s where, post-Crisis, Ultraman underwent yet another overhaul. In the pages of the JLA: Earth 2, we met The Crime Syndicate of America, a villainous version of the Justice League from the “Antimatter Universe.”

Known as Lieutenant Clark Kent, Ultraman was a human astronaut whose spaceship imploded in hyperspace. He was reconstructed by a mysterious alien race, leaving him with powers similar to those of Superman. However, the process twisted his mind as well. 

He once again relied on Kryptonite (or Anti-Kryptonite) for his powers and is unhappily married to his Crime Syndicate teammate, Superwoman. Their human alter-egos are Clark Kent and Lois Lane, but will the DCU’s Luthor give his “Superman” a secret identity?

2. The New 52’s Ultraman


Ultraman would receive yet another reboot in “The New 52,” though he still hailed from Earth-Three and was the leader of the evil Crime Syndicate. Now, though, Kal-Il hailed from a Krypton which was completely different to that of Kal-El’s.

He was sent to Earth to take vengeance against those who destroyed his home and was given a much darker, twisted backstory (including the fact he forced alcoholic drug addicts, Johnny and Martha Kent, to adopt him, only to murder them when he was old enough). 

A complete maniac, this Ultraman shares Superman’s powers but is weakened by yellow sunlight and snorts Kryptonite like cocaine to enhance his abilities. We’d be shocked if Gunn doesn’t borrow at least some elements of this version. 

1. What It Means For James Gunn’s SUPERMAN


So, that’s Ultraman’s history on the page, but what does this mean for SUPERMAN? The DCU’s Luthor reportedly uses some of the Man of Steel’s DNA to create his clone, presumably so he can have a superhero who is a) “better” than Superman and b) answers to him. 

The whole thing is bound to eventually go wrong and it’s then that we expect to see a villain more akin to Bizarro. Yes, he’ll start as the DCU’s Ultraman (minus much of the backstory explained here) but something has to happen to deform his appearance and turn him into a monster.

It’s a bold move on Gunn’s part to forego Superman’s rogues gallery to focus on an evil Superman and it means David Corenswet will have to pull double duty and play two characters. This is either going to be brilliant or a misstep to kick off the DCU with…