Actual Superman Villains In Superman Movies

Actual Superman Villains In Superman Movies

Six Superman movies, but only two enemies that come from the comics? (first editorial, so any and all feedback is appreciated)

While Superman may not be my favorite Superhero, I do enjoy both his live-action and animated movies, comics, and animated shows (I didn't like Smallville or Lois and Clark) but I have to say, when I learned that General Zod was the villain in the new Superman Movie, I was pretty disappointed.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with General Zod as a villain or character. It has been years since I've seen Superman II, but from what I remember, there wasn't anything bad worth mentioning about him. But in the past five superman movies, we have only seen two of his enemies from the comics, Lex Luthor and General Zod. In three of them, Luthor was an enemy, and now Zod will have been the enemy twice. They are both good characters, and it is understandable why Luthor was used so many times, he is the arch-enemy of Superman, and most popular villain of his, but people get tired of seeing the same things so many times, and yes, Luthor is not the enemy in this movie, but Zod is, and we have already seen Zod.

Superman does not have a rogues gallery even close to the caliber of Batman or Spider-man, but he has his share of good villains. Characters like Mongul, Brainiac, Bizarro, Metallo, Doomsday, Darkseid and even Lobo would have excited me more than Zod because they would be something new and fresh. This is where Batman Begins and the upcoming Amazing Spider-Man helped draw more interest, they had a new villain. The last time I brought this up someone argued that nobody complained when Joker and Two-Face were the enemies in The Dark Knight, and my argument for that is nobody complained because it had been awhile since we saw them, and yes, it has been much longer since we saw Zod speaking in the amount of years, but in-between Zod we got a super computer that wasn't Brainiac for some odd reason, Luthor again with Nuclear Man, and Luthor one more time. Between Batman and The Dark Knight we saw The Penguin, Catwoman, Riddler, Scarecrow, and Ras Al Ghul (I'm not even counting those awful portrayals in Batman and Robin, or Two-Face since he appeared in the Dark Knight too). So we may have seen the same villains in The Dark Knight, but we had seen many of Batmans other villains in his previous movies, so we didn't mind. But we have not seen anyone but Luthor and Zod in the Superman movies, and it is a shame because Zod is not a bad villain, but a new face would have been so much better.

And even if they were saving Darkseid for the Justice League movie, it would have been better to have him in this movie so that in the Justice League they would not have to tell his background story and just cut straight into the Justice League story.

It's working well for Loki in the Avengers anyway...

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Thanos005 - 3/31/2012, 5:15 AM
I was never comparing, and I never said Zod was a bad villain. And I never said the movie would be bad. I actually am excited to see Supes actually throw a punch, I just wish it was on someone elses face.

I do agree that Zod is the best to retell an origin, I didn't consider that, and it is a good point, but the general public should know enough that we do not need EVERY detail laid out for us. We know the basics, Superman is a very popular character not only in media, but in the world. We know a few things about him.

And maybe Doomsday and Darkseid are pretty recent, but theyre recent enough to be animated, so that means that theyre recent enough to be live-action too. We saw Darkseid in the animated series in the mid-nineties, nearly twenty years ago. Thats not very recent at all.

Spider-Man 1 had Green Goblin, his toughest enemy in the comics, and the worst thing about it was his costume. And Spider-Man 2 was a few hairs shy of being a masterpiece, so it can work. That being said, I am excited for this movie, and I don't think Zod is the worst choice, I just wish it was someone else.
GOTG - 3/31/2012, 5:19 AM
i dont see the point of tghis article when the WORLDS GREATEST CBM comes out in a months time...AVENGERS ASSEMBLE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
JDUKE25 - 3/31/2012, 8:47 AM
Sorry, I understand what you're saying, but you can't compare Loki to Darkseid. Loki is standing there taking crap from Tony. Darkseid would've fried his a$$ before he could have gotten one word out.
RidiculousFanBoyDemands - 3/31/2012, 9:53 AM
Zod hasn't been used on screen in over 30 years, and it apparently it makes sense to the origin story to use him in this one. I'm alright with it, plus he gives the audience a little familiarity. I think when it is all said and done you won't care that they used Zod in the first one because it will be so different from the Donnor incarnations.

Also, I don't think a Justice League movie would translate well to film. There comes a point where you have TOO many characters and trying to divide screen time between them, villains and ancillary characters is nearly impossible to do well in 80 minutes. I'm interested to see how the Avengers will incorporate more characters without bogging down the story in the future. For right now I'm okay with a solid Batman franchise, and a Superman reboot. I would rather see those characters explored more individually then make a quick cash grab justice league film.
Tainted87 - 3/31/2012, 9:56 AM
Darkseid is like Thanos - everyone wants him immediately one way or another, but fans don't understand that they would be biting off far more than they can chew. Like Just1Superguy said, Darkseid is good for a climax, and not just because of his "power level", but because of how involving his story is.

Consider the character interaction before anything else. Lex Luthor is a sure thing as far as that is concerned - he is the anti-thesis of Superman and he's human. General Zod is from Krypton. I'm going to break into a different territory here - Transformers Prime. The action figures are just now coming out, only very slowly and gradually. Right now it is Wheeljack, Cliffjumper (they have only made extremely minor appearances on the show), aaaaaaannnnnnnd - Bumblebee. Bumblebee has his own tv trope for being the kid tested, mother approved safe choice. He has even managed to overshadow Optimus in being the most prominent marketable character from the movies, from various POPs to the obvious toys. He is cheap too, which means Hasbro can sell more of him.

I'm fairly certain that DC has yet to truly grow a pair, considering how apart from Batman Begins, the same villains have been used before, just in different and less faithful ways. Even this new Catwoman look is extremely reminiscent of Julie Newmar.

With Superman, since it is a reboot, it is reasonable that they use a bit of the old to fulfill a marriage of the new, and yes I know how silly that sounds. General Zod is old school for those who have seen the old movies (believe it or not, most kids haven't, and don't even know who Christopher Reeve is) - but he is still, like Kal-El, an alien from Krypton. The fact that they are starting this franchise off with an alien threat is a good sign. Imagine if it was Luthor.

It sets the precedent for the next villains in the franchise, and while we should probably count on seeing Lex Luthor in a sequel, it is likely he will not be alone. From General Zod, I think we should expect Brainiac, and from General Lane's involvement, maybe we could see Metallo worked in there in some way. But there has to be a start, one bookend before the last.

I'm completely and utterly against Doomsday. Lobo has more character depth. Doomsday is just a monster who lands on Earth, beats the Justice League, and then fights Superman to the death. He was created to kill off Superman to make the Man of Steel vulnerable again. He doesn't have any ambition. He doesn't want anything from Earth. For all intents and purposes, he doesn't even KNOW what Earth is. He is a vehicle for destruction and action sequences, nothing more. He would be the worst possible choice.
TheMyth - 3/31/2012, 11:43 AM
So long as I get Brainiac in this new Supes franchise, I'll be happy. To me, he is the perfect Superman villain.

Regarding Zod, just be glad they didn't start off with Luthor. With Zod in #1 we are sure to get something no Supes flic has really delivered, some great action! And since this is how they're leading off, it gets me hyped for the future of the franchise. I agree with above posters who call for Brainiac for part 2, maybe some Darkseid action for #3!
Coloso - 3/31/2012, 12:03 PM
Great article Thanos005.

The analogy you used with Loki and Darkseid was appropriate and makes sense.

If you introduce him in Superman, then you don't have to waste time explaining his origin story in a Justice Leage movie. Marvel saw the bigger picture when it was planning Avengers and none of the characters will feel short changed because everybody already knows who loki is.
Alex2814 - 3/31/2012, 4:34 PM
I would love to see Metallo in a movie. I mean a krytonite powered cyborg! Whu hasn't it happened yet? Its not like it may be too out there like Brainiac or Darksied (both of whem I'm waiting to see in movie).
jaysin420 - 3/31/2012, 4:47 PM
Interesting article, Zod was the last villain I wanted to see in this movie but at least they got a great actor for the role.

It is pretty crazy that after 6 movies they've only used 2 good villains, I never really thought about that before. I can't believe nobody used Metallo yet cause he'd look cool in a movie and he's easy to explain.
Marxman12 - 3/31/2012, 8:00 PM
Thanks for the article! I think Superman Return's biggest flaw was that it tried too hard to be like the Christopher Reeves Superman movies- we really saw nothing new. At least in TDK when they used Joker and Two-Face they brought a fresh look and dynamic portrayal compared to the previous versions of the characters. Gene Hackman's Luthor had 0 character progression and although Kevin Spacey is a better actor his portrayal was not much different or better. I hope this Zod is different and I hope when Luthor is introduced into the films it is different, contemporary, and fresh. Now give us Brainiac, Parasite, Metallo, and Darkseid!
golden123 - 3/31/2012, 8:27 PM
Alot of new (post-Crisis) material, with Zod, has been written since 1980. I'm sure Zod will be based on that as opposed to the stories the Terence Stamp version was based. Just look at the Joker. The Heath Ledger Joker was written much differently than the Jack Nicholson Joker. The Jack Nicholson Joker was much written differently than the Cesar Romero Joker. The reason for this is that the different Jokers were based on different writings of the character. It will be the same with Zod. Pre-Crisis Zod is different than Post-Crisis Zod.
wedontdie - 3/31/2012, 8:29 PM
@PUX I want to make a Superman trilogy and I want to make brainiac the first villian.. then lex luthor in the second film as the second villain while he used metallo as a weapon then doomsday by himself as the last villain in the last film. I'll explain my ideas in an artical that I will post soon.
golden123 - 3/31/2012, 8:32 PM
By the way, I am glad that the supercomputer in Superman III wasn't called Brainiac. That would just annoy me because it wouldn't be Brainiac. It would be similar to how Bane was portrayed in Batman & Robin. Besides, if that occured, people would be able to argue that we have already seen Brainiac in the movies. On that note, I would love to see Brainiac in the next sequel (assuming we get one). Brainiac is my favorite Superman villain.
golden123 - 3/31/2012, 8:33 PM
@wedontdie: Make sure to post your article in Fanfic.
wedontdie - 3/31/2012, 8:40 PM
@ golden123 I will and i also have another fan fic idea on my ideas for a medieval superman...
wedontdie - 3/31/2012, 8:40 PM
been watching game of thrones and it has inspired me to make a medieval superhero story! HHAHAHAH
golden123 - 3/31/2012, 8:50 PM
@Just1Superguy: Mongul is a Superman villain.

@Thanos500: Darkseid was the main villain in the tenth season of Smallville. Also, General Zod was the main villain for season nine, and Doomsday was the main villain for season eight. All of which were pretty recent. Smallville had enough viewers to last ten seasons.
Tainted87 - 3/31/2012, 10:56 PM
The retconned Brainiac is one of my favorite villains in comics, period.

Smallville isn't something to compare the movies to in any way shape or form. The Doomsday isn't anything like the character from the comics. Everything in that show is neutered, as the creators painted themselves into a very plain corner.

But yes, Mongul is a Superman villain, introduced in Superman comics, and "For the Man Who Has Everything" is a classic Alan Moore story. Mongul is NOT suitable for movies, however.

I'm not letting go of my comments about Doomsday. He's a horrible idea. If you want a Lex Luthor creation, take a Millar-style Bizarro from Red Son.

I think Brainiac is the most relevant villain Superman can face, and that's without even considering the technological implications of the character. He is a collector of planets, and he has been around. He is like the personification of the Borg from Star Trek, and imagine if he presented himself as a historian, or an archive of Krypton to Superman in a benevolent manner.

Whenever I play Mass Effect, I think of Brainiac as the Reapers.
wedontdie - 4/1/2012, 8:17 AM
@Tainted.... I think Doomsday is a great idea for one of the movies... maybe not a creation of Lex or Brainiac but still used as a weapon by either of these 2... In my ideas I think that Lex should be the creator of a Metallo. If you have read my first comment that I posted you will know what I mean...
gamecreatorjj - 4/1/2012, 11:10 AM
its not working well for loki, because he was chosen to be the villain in the avengers, is the reason this is my least anticipated movie, choosing loki, immeadiatly took away all threat or suspense this movie could have because, hes not a good villain, he was taken down in thor by putting a hammer on his chest, "but oh wait, he has an army" well given the fact that each avenger has defeated an army alone, it shouldnt be a problem, ironman has held his own against fighter jets, ufo's should be no problem, hulk fought a giant sonic weapon, lasers should be no problem, captain defeated cosmic nazis, aliens with lasers should be no problem, thor defeated some kind of frost giant dinosaur, leviahton should be no problem, so if this movie isnt over in a half hour, then it doesnt fit into the MCU
golden123 - 4/1/2012, 11:24 AM
@Tainted87: The Superman mythos as portrayed in Smallville are still the Superman mythos. Just because you didn't like the show doesn't mean it doesn't count. You can still compare the show the movies.

I don't get how Mongul is not suitable for movies and Darkseid is. I've always seen those two as similar villains.

Have you read the Doomsday Wars story. It's the best Doomsday story there is. Doomsday isn't even the main villain, though. Brainiac is. I wouldn't mind a movie being based off of that story. I think you might like it.

Your idea for portraying Brainiac in the next movie reminds me of Superman the animated series.
Lilvic92 - 4/1/2012, 2:44 PM
I approve DE4POOL's comment
Supes17 - 4/1/2012, 3:05 PM
Darkseid would chew him up and spit him out
Tainted87 - 4/1/2012, 7:18 PM
Mongul has a death star. He abducts all kinds of people from different planets and makes them kill each other in a gigantic arena. Sure, he can be quite a bit like Darkseid, but Mongul would not be easily adapted. Superman would be pulled away from Earth, for what reason, I really can't fathom... well no, I can. It usually starts with WHO? Metron and his annoying habit of popping up and telling people what they're supposed to do in his floating Mobius chair. Metron.... from New Genesis.

How many times would you see Superman fly out into space or leave Earth in a Superman movie franchise? Well if you compare it to Smallville, I would say not too many. So then, would you have him break that precedent by having him abducted and transported to Mongul's War Moon or some barren rock to resist fighting for his survival... or would you go all the way out there and have him confront Darkseid?

You COULD have both, and while it may seem like having Darkseid/New Genesis/Apokalips afterwards would be advantageous for their story - it would be tiring and not even halfway through it nonfans would be whining that its such a similar story.

Darkseid, not Mongul.
MovieTheaterLad - 4/2/2012, 10:38 AM
We need the Prankster.

JM4Superman - 4/2/2012, 3:16 PM
@HeroComplex Snyder said he would distant himself from his style of slo-mo.
Knightrider - 4/2/2012, 8:21 PM
I find this article a little odd, as the argument against Zod seems to be undone by the fact you congratulate Loki for being in the Avengers, well he was in Thor and from what we already have seen want be anything we haven't seen before. However I do see your point, but I feel the movies are like the comics, they get different writers and interpretations all the time and their villains will be used countless times too. However it is how they are changed, if anything going back to the Loki vs Zod argument, you could say Zod in MoS will be vastly more different from Superman 2 when compared to Loki from Thor to Loki from Avengers.
That being said, I feel Superman has one of the worst best rouges galleries out there, what I mean by that is, when you read out some of the names E.G. Brainiac, Zod, Bizarro, Parasite, Metallo, Doomsday and Darkseid you'd think there are some great villains, however some, well most have been soooo badly written and used they come over poorly. For instance Parasite should be one of the best villains, but most of his villains get turned into mindless apes where Superman should have more personal and emotional conflicts with some of his foes.
Scooby - 4/2/2012, 9:13 PM
I enjoy Snyder's use of "slo mo" stuff. In my opinion, it's a whole lot more than "slo mo" - there is a lot of technique in what he does.
thedude2936 - 4/3/2012, 10:30 AM
i think Zod is a wonderful choice for a first movie, Id like to see them introduce Lex and maybe Metallo in the second and then if there is a third movie bring in Mongul or Darkseid. I always had a soft spot for the villain Conduit when i was growing up. the whole Kenny Braverman/Clark Kent rivalry was a nice touch to clark's background as well. but thats just my opinion
DCnerd46 - 4/6/2012, 5:11 PM
I really like Zod, & I think Michael Shannon will be terrific in the role, but I felt the same disappointment as you when the character's involvement was announced. Superman has a terrific rogues gallery IMO, & branching out to those villains cinematically would only ignite more interest in the franchise. I was really hoping we'd finally get to see Brainiac on the screen, I think fans deserve that, but evidently we won't see him any time too soon. Metallo would be fun to see as well, he's one of my personal favorites. I think Darkseid would be the ideal villain for a JLA movie. As much as I love Lex Luthor, I'll be pissed if he's announced as the main villain in a MOS sequel.
RobGrizzly - 4/7/2012, 7:03 PM
I really liked what this article had to say, but I might be biased because I am in full agreement.

Another point to The Dark Knight's returning villains, is that Batman Begins did set up a sort of "new" Batman universe. It was the kind of reboot that made you excited to see any familiar rouge, and what the realistic spin on him (or her) would be.

This will be Superman's first true reboot, so in that way, the new take on Zod might be exciting. But again, I'm with the author in that Zod isn't exactly a foe who lights my fire, so seeing him again, no matter what the new twist, isn't as exciting as it could be. Probably because I'm not as familiar with him as I am Batman/Spiderman villains.

But the point is (and it is 100% valid) that all these movies, and the filmmakers go to the same well. Do they just not think other Superman villains are good enough? Are they too hard to pull off? Or do they just not even really know the property as well as fans?

What worries me most, is we might not even get a new face anytime soon. If Zod is in the first movie, there's no way Lex Luthor isn't in the second. Which means we'd have to wait THREE movies from now to see any other Supes rogue come to life- IF the franchise isn't rebooted again by that time.

A great 1st article. (you will fit right in!)
RobGrizzly - 4/7/2012, 7:05 PM
Also, agreed about Smallville, and I never even thought about how part III could have used Brainiac and still been mostly the same movie!
Whiteharted - 4/8/2012, 11:59 AM
People are worried because its the same villain AGAIN!!!!!!!!!!

Everyone saying, "well TDK reused Joker and Two Face" err that WASN'T THE REBOOT!!! IT WAS THE SECOND ONE!!!

EVERY reboot, expect this one has had a new villain

Snyder LIED!!!!

This movie is sounded more and more like a remake everyday!
Whiteharted - 4/8/2012, 12:00 PM
Oh and Chris Nolan ISN'T producer so everyone can zip it.
Whiteharted - 4/8/2012, 12:02 PM
Oh and re using Loki means nothing why? BECAUSE THE AVENGERS ISN'T THE NEXT THOR MOVIE!!

Doesn't count
NickD - 4/9/2012, 10:53 AM
Nuclear Man ruled! By far Superman toughest on screen villian, that is just so sad
Emjeed - 4/9/2012, 8:39 PM
@Whiteharted I think YOU should zip it.. Nolan IS producing. This is the Official press release from Warner Bros.

“Man of Steel” is being produced by Charles Roven, Emma Thomas, Christopher Nolan and Deborah Snyder. The screenplay was written by David S. Goyer, from a story by Goyer and Nolan, based upon Superman characters created by Jerry Siegel & Joe Shuster and published by DC Comics. Thomas Tull and Lloyd Phillips are serving as executive producers."
If you don't believe it, heres a link to the official press release


AUSSYACE - 4/11/2012, 9:45 PM
Can't wait for the new Superman Movie...

Henry Cavill is perfectly cast in the role...
Whiteharted - 4/13/2012, 3:15 PM
@ Emjeed YOU STFU! BOF, confirmed Nolan IS NOT producing with the article "MOS Totally Synder's baby"

Nolan focuses on ONE THING AT A TIME.
PeterParker1991 - 4/21/2012, 6:48 PM
I'm not crazy about seeing Zod again, but it really matters not. Let's all be glad its not Luthor again otherwise I wouldn't even bother buying a ticket. I personally want to see Brainiac or Metallo make a debut on the big screen against Superman. As long as the story and villain/villainess go together, it will be fine and I'm sure that's why the director chose to use Zod, because he fits with Man of Steel's story best. And as much as I would love to see Darkseid on film, I'm not sure he would work, mainly because he's the sort of villain that works better behind the scenes. Secondly, we certainly don't want it to end up like what we got in Smallville...
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