The following comprises spoilers for Black Adam, now enjoying in theaters
The post-credits scene for Black Adam confirms the return of the DCEU model of Superman, performed by Henry Cavil. After defeating Sabbac, Black Adam publicizes himself a protector of Kahndaq — and when Amanda Waller warns him through drone to remain out of the remainder of the world or threat getting focused, he goads her into revealing one in every of her huge weapons. Superman flies down and asks if Black Adam could be prepared to talk with him in regards to the future.
It’s an enormous second, that teases a long-awaited battle between the Man of Steel and Khandaq’s champion. But it is also one which quietly follows a pattern of pitting Black Adam in opposition to Superman extra typically than in opposition to Shazam — his nominal nemesis. There’s a superb motive for it although, because the reinvention of Black Adam within the early twenty first century set him as much as turn out to be the final word DC anti-Superman.
How Black Adam Went From Shazam Villain To DC Fixture
Initially launched as one in every of Captain Marvel’s foes within the Pre-Crisis DC Universe, Adam carried on that position when he was reintroduced as one of many villains in Jerry Ordwell’s The Power of Shazam! graphic novel. But the character grew to become more and more morally doubtful throughout his tenure in JSA, beginning as an enemy and ultimately attempting to redeem himself as a member of the workforce. It was throughout this era that he started to point out extra ethical complexities.
He had a want to do good however a willingness to commit horrifying acts if it was finished for the larger good. In some ways, this quietly started to set Black Adam up much less as an opposing power to Billy Batson — who throughout that interval went by way of a sequence of modifications, together with changing the wizard Shazam because of the occasions main as much as Infinite Crisis. His position on the coronary heart of the large-scale 52 made him a common character lower than only a Shazam villain, giving him a novel position within the DC Universe as a tragic villain who might often function a morally doubtful anti-hero. It is smart then that he’d ultimately be paired contrasted in opposition to Superman, the foundational character the remainder of the DC Universe is constructed atop.
Both had functionally related powers; super-strength, super-speed, flight, and endurance. Black Adam deriving his talents from magic offers him a pure edge over Superman, because of the latter’s vulnerability to the supernatural. Both additionally grew to become largely outlined by their mission statements to guard others, though Superman’s extra purely altruistic dedication to the preservation of life stands in stark distinction to Black Adam’s extra constantly brutal techniques. In idea, their energy ranges make them robust sufficient to really pose a risk to 1 one other, particularly contemplating they will probably by no means see actually eye-to-eye.
Why Superman & Black Adam Work With (And Against) Each Another
Superman and Black Adam’s interactions have led to some attention-grabbing conflicts between the characters, particularly lately. Following the occasions of Dark Nights: Metal, Black Adam has been proven embracing a extra heroic path, together with his Future State incarnation preventing alongside Billy Batson in opposition to the Four Horsemen whereas his fashionable model joined the Justice League. His darker impulses have remained, nonetheless, and in the end Adam’s actual power in opposition to Superman has been extra explored in Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths, albeit with a unique Man of Steel. Jon Kent has spent a lot of the occasion contrasted in opposition to Adam, doing his greatest to maintain the workforce from following his darker intentions for deadly types of justice.
At his core, Black Adam makes a superb distinction in opposition to the superhero group by carrying a really totally different type of morality. Hailing from an period and place the place demise was frequent and carried out with little accountability, Adam’s brutality makes extra sense. But his actions, whereas in the end heroic, are carried out with no mercy. This contrasts fantastically in opposition to Superman, somebody who all the time gives a hand to assist earlier than elevating a fist to strike. It locations Adam because the pure darkish distinction to the heroic preferrred on the very coronary heart of the DC Universe and greatest personified by Superman. It’s what makes Adam such an attention-grabbing counterpoint to the Man of Steel — and the actual motive folks wish to see them go head-to-head, even past the super-strength punches.