10 DC Movies That Disappointed Fans

As the home of some of the most beloved superheroes of all time, it goes without saying that DC Comics commands fans‘ respect and raises their expectations. This also applies to the publishing giant’s movies, and fans‘ high expectations of DC movies are justified given that some DC movies changed the superhero genre and cinema forever.

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However, not all of DC Comics‘ movies live up to their hype. Sometimes this is just a case of fans‘ desires and wants not being met but, more often than not, the movie in question let them down in major ways. For some fans, these movies didn’t just fail as adaptations of their favorite comics, but as movies as well.

10 The Dark Knight Rises Couldn’t Live Up To The Dark Knight

To say that The Dark Knight Rises faced an uphill battle would be an understatement. Besides being the conclusion to Christopher Nolan’s acclaimed Dark Knight trilogy, The Dark Knight Rises was also the follow-up to The Dark Knight, which is considered one of the best superhero movies ever made and is closely associated with Heath Ledger’s legacy.

The Dark Knight Rises ended Batman’s trilogy on a high note, but there was simply no way it could surpass a legendary film like The Dark Knight. Because of its predecessor’s impact, The Dark Knight Rises faced impossible expectations and divided fans, even if was a good finale and stand-alone movie in its own right.

9 Constantine Wasn’t The Movie Hellblazer Fans Wanted

With its current reputation as an underrated gem, it may be hard to remember a time when comics fans derided Constantine as a terrible movie. In brief, Constantine was an Americanized retelling of the very British Hellblazer comics. Hellblazer fans gave Constantine a chance but still left disappointed.

Besides being a simplified take on Hellblazer’s best comics, Keanu Reeves‘ stoic portrayal of John Constantine clashed with the roguish mage who the comics‘ fans loved. Constantine was a disappointing adaptation of some of the most influential DC Vertigo comics ever made but, to its credit, it still stands as its own gritty occult-driven action movie.

8 Superman Returns Was Superman’s Dull Comeback

Christopher Reeve may be the definitive Superman, but not all of his Superman movies are great. The first two are practically untouchable, but Superman III and the Reeves-directed Superman IV: The Quest For Peace are guilty pleasures. This is why Superman Returns seemed so promising since it was a return to Reeves‘ canon, but without the bad sequels.

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Although Brandon Routh was praised for his performance as Clark Kent and Superman, most fans felt that the legacy sequel was too somber for its own good. Worse, the movie’s self-seriousness clashed with the original movies‘ fun optimism. Superman Returns didn’t flop, but its lukewarm reception convinced producers to quietly scrap sequel plans.

7 Batman & Harley Quinn Was Needlessly Crass & Edgy

To this day, Batman: The Animated Series is considered one of the greatest cartoons ever made. Any time the series was revisited by its original creators and stars was something for fans to celebrate and that seemed to include Batman And Harley Quinn. Not only did Paul Dini return to write, but Kevin Conroy and Loren Lester reprised their iconic roles.

Instead of feeling like a lost episode, Batman And Harley Quinn felt more like juvenile fanfiction that tried too hard to look cool. Harley isn’t above risqué humor, as illustrated by her namesake adult cartoon and Birds Of Prey, but the movie’s immaturity and raunchiness clashed with Batman: The Animated Series‘ tone and annoyed long-time fans.

6 Injustice Was A Poor Summary Of The Games It Was Based On

Although the Injustice: Gods Among Us games are (in)famous for their brutality and gore, what fans really love is the games‘ Elseworld-styled alternate reality where Batman led a rebellion against an evil Superman. The game’s popularity led to a feature-length adaptation in Injustice which, unfortunately, was a watered-down version of the game’s plot.

Besides the fact that Injustice’s runtime couldn’t cover all or even some of the game’s most important beats, it lacked the game’s schlocky entertainment value and, more importantly, its edgy-but-fun characterizations and world-building. Injustice added nothing to its source material, and it’s better for fans to stick with the games and tie-in comics.

5 Batman: The Killing Joke Made A Controversial Comic Even Worse

Despite aging so terribly that its own creators (Alan Moore and Brian Bolland) disowned it, The Killing Joke continues to be one of the most beloved and influential comics ever printed. The Killing Joke’s undying legacy led to fans hoping that it would be adapted in some form, and they got their wish in a feature-length movie replete with top-tier talent and fan-favorites.

Sadly, The Killing Joke’s animated adaptation only made the problematic story even more offensive. Besides the needless and creepy subplot between Batman and Batgirl, the movie seemingly misunderstood or ignored Moore’s depiction of Joker as a pretentious failure by turning him into a tragic villain. The comic has its failings but the movie is worse.

4 Justice League Was Mediocre At Best

Though original director Zack Snyder was replaced at the last second by Joss Whedon and even amidst other controversies, there was still some considerable hype behind Justice League. After all, this was the first time that DC Comics‘ heroes teamed up on the big screen. But even with this novelty, Justice League still fell short of its lowered expectations.

Simply put, Justice League felt too much like The Avengers, but with a darker color palette. Fans of Snyder’s grim vision for the DCEU didn’t like how rudely he was replaced, and newcomers quickly forgot about Whedon’s version. Not helping matters were all the controversies linked to Justice League’s production, which all but buried an already disposable movie.

3 Wonder Woman 1984 Was A Baffling Disaster

Wonder Woman couldn’t have come out at a better time. Hot off the heels of the DCEU’s rocky start, Princess Diana’s new origin recharged the floundering franchise and revived fans‘ faith in the DCEU. With such an impressive pedigree behind it, the sequel Wonder Woman 1984 seemed like a surefire hit but it missed its easy target.

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To put it nicely, Wonder Woman 1984 was a mess. It had too many competing plotlines, a corny and shallow script, a bloated runtime, and questionable narrative choices, especially regarding Steve Trevor. Most fans were confused by the ensuing trainwreck, while others classified Wonder Woman 1984 as a laughably bad guilty pleasure.

2 Suicide Squad Failed In Almost Every Regard

It isn’t an exaggeration to say that Suicide Squad had a lot riding on its success. Besides being the first superhero movie featuring villains as protagonists, it was also the DCEU’s second movie in 2016. Not only were fans hoping that Task Force X would redeem the franchise after Batman V. Superman’s failure, but they wanted it to win against MCU.

Suicide Squad earned upwards of $700 million, but it was so bad that it couldn’t meet even the lowest expectations. The movie barely escaped a chaotic production cycle marred by studio interference, and it shows. Task Force X got the movie they deserved in 2021, but their 2016 debut let a lot of fans down.

1 Batman V. Superman: Dawn Of Justice Nearly Killed The DCEU

After starting big with Man Of Steel, DCEU decided to take things even further by following up Superman’s modernized origin with a mega-crossover. Batman V. Superman was the first time Superman and Batman joined forces in a live-action movie and it was the official start of the DCEU’s take on the Justice League, and fans‘ excitement was astronomical.

This should’ve been the first of the DCEU’s one-two punch in 2016 but, instead, Batman V. Superman was the franchise’s near-death experience. Batman V. Superman’s oppressive tone and excessive edginess turned off most viewers and even angered some, and this fierce backlash drove the DCEU’s seemingly unending course correction from that point onward.

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