I managed to make it through the entirety of "Zack Snyder's Justice League." Here's what I learned (spoilers ahead!):
Nothing ever ends: And by that, I don't mean the movie, which clocks in at 4 hours, 2 minutes. Although sometimes it did feel like it would never end. The epilogue alone was almost 20 minutes! No, what never ends is the saga of this movie, which came out in truncated form in 2017. If you're not familiar with its history, Snyder did all the principal photography for the original, but quit due to a family tragedy. "Avengers" director Joss Whedon took the reins, and the resultant tonal mishmash pleased no one. Snyder fans were clamoring for his version, and the studio had a new streamer (HBO Max) to push. WarnerMedia threw Snyder $70 million and told him to finish his version.
Nothing ever ends Part II: So, about that epilogue. In various interviews, Snyder has explained what it means — and what it was supposed to tease, which are the nonexistent movies "Justice League 2" and "Justice League 3." And we got a couple of hints as to what would be in those last two movies.
As we see in the epilogue, the only resistance left on Earth after Batman's failure is the Dark Knight himself, Mera, Deathstroke, Cyborg, Flash and, pointlessly, the Joker (Jared Leto). According to Snyder, all of them would die except for Flash, who would travel back in time at the last instant, in order to warn Batman, who steps in front of a blast to save Lois Lane (Amy Adams).
Then in the last movie, we see an alternate timeline, where Lois doesn't die and Superman doesn't fall to the Anti-Life Equation. The Last Son of Krypton, Wonder Woman (leading the Amazons) and Aquaman (leading the Atlanteans) go toe to toe with Darkseid. The Super Friends prevail, and a pregnant Lois (we saw the positive pregnancy test in "ZSJL") gives birth to — Batman's son.
It's not easy being green: Lastly in the epilogue, we meet the Martian Manhunter. Well, we meet him in his true shape for the first time, as he had appeared earlier in the movie pretending to be Martha Kent. Incidentally, Martian Manhunter (Harry Lennix) had been around all through the trilogy, as Gen. Swanwick. But according to Snyder, the reveal in the epilogue was planned to feature another emerald-hued character.
"It was supposed to be one of the [Green] Lanterns," Snyder told Esquire. "And then they [the studio] asked me, when they saw the movie and saw that I put it in there, they'd take it out. And the Green Lantern was John Stewart."
Nothing ever ends Part III: So, at long last, are we done with the Snyderverse?
"I know that the studio doesn't really have any interest, clearly, in doing another movie with me," Snyder told Esquire. So it's done. But wait: There's a black-and-white version of the movie which will be released soon. And then there's this: "It's entirely possible that a movie sequel will happen, especially if the global response to 'Zack Snyder's Justice League' is big enough to make WarnerMedia realize a follow-up would be a wise investment," Snyder told ComicBookMovie.com. Sigh. Here we go again.