James Gunn's Superman Suit Controversy & Backlash Explained

By David Thompson Posted:
David Corenswet as Superman in James Gunn's Superman movie

Controversy has struck after James Gunn and DC Studios officially unveiled the suit David Corenswet will be wearing in 2025's Superman.

James Gunn, co-president of DC Studios and director of Superman, initially unveiled the new Superman symbol on February 29.

The suit clearly draws inspiration from the Kingdom Come comic books. Many fans were quick to create their own versions of the full suit, imagining how it'd look in totality.

Finally, all the fan-made concept art was pushed to the side after Gunn and DC revealed the first full look at Corenswet in the Superman suit on May 6.

Superman Suit Controversy Explained

Following the grand reveal of the new Superman suit, fans have been quick to point out several issues, including its baggy appearance around the upper arms and shoulders, overdesigned textures, and a possible rubbery feel. 

David Corenswet, Superman, Suit Reveal, James Gunn

An X (formerly Twitter) post with 4.5 million views pointed out that "it doesn’t even fit him properly" around the shoulders and waist.

Possibly the biggest issue, which is a sign of the times, is that many believe AI could have enhanced or created this. Gunn seemingly got ahead of this by crediting the photographer, calling the image "entirely in-camera."

Some believe it looks cheap compared to other cinematic suits, and several comments under the official DC TikTok poked fun at the new look by comparing it to the costumes on The CW shows.

Superman Suit, Tyler Hoechlin, David Corenswet

User @samk0006 posted on X, calling it "mind boggling" that Gunn's version looks worse than the Superman & Lois suit:

"It's genuinely mind boggling that a CW production made a better Superman suit than a big budget film."

For many, the first look's seemingly computer-graphics enhancement, with a huge light beam covering the Metropolis sky, did come as a surprise. Some backlash is also being thrown at the pose, with Corenswet's Kal-El sitting down casually putting on his left boot.

More context will surely be added later, but Superman seems to have recently been fighting as the crest upon his chest is dirtied and battle-worn. This first look is also objectively dark, with many fans expecting a lighter tone to be communicated following the Zack Snyder and Henry Cavill era of Superman.

However, many devoted Snyder fans are still against Gunn's new version. Some are calling Corenswet a clear downgrade from Cavill, and this first look doesn't help, as Cavill's suit looked substantially different.

David Corenswet, Henry Cavill, Superman

One X user called costume designer Michael Wilkinson's Superman suits "sex in clothing form" while adding that "Zack Snyder’s creative direction was Reverence deserving of the highest quality:"

"Michael Wilkinson’s Superman suits were sex in clothing form. Zack Snyder’s creative direction was Reverence deserving of the highest quality. Need them all back!"

However, many fans online have also reacted positively to the suit and are excited to see it in action. There is a theory swirling that would lead to the new Superman film introducing several suits.

Is There Only One Superman Suit?

Since the symbol was revealed to take inspiration from the Kingdom Come storyline, DC fans have been trying to put the puzzle pieces together of what James Gunn is creating.

For those that don't know, Kingdom Come follows an aging Superman grappling with an unstable future where traditional heroism clashes with escalating violence.

Made popular by YouTuber Boba Talks, there's a reverse-Kingdom Come theory for Gunn's Superman. In this theory, instead of having regular heroes, the world is full of anti-heroes who don't follow the usual rules. 

Considering the inclusion of DC heroes like Guy Gardner (Green Lantern), Mr. Terrific, Hawkgirl, Metamorpho, The Engineer, and more, Gunn wants Superman to take place in an already-established universe.

Gunn notably used a Kingdom Come image in November 2022 to tease that he was "making plans" for the new DCU.

The new suit revealed has now reignited this Kingdom Come connection once again, with Plasma Giant stating they're "even more convinced" this theory is true and the suit "will be changed into a more classic one by the end:"

"Yeah I'm even more convinced the theme 'Kingdom Come in reverse' with militaristic vigilantes transitioning to a Golden Age of heroes means this suit will be changed into a more classic one by the end. 

I have this feeling it's intentional and you'll see New 52 to Rebirth suit"

Gunn's new suit shares some striking similarities to the New 52 suit, including the large symbol, a collar, and additional lining.

However, it remains to be seen if any of this theory will become reality, so fans should treat the new suit as the one and only going forward in the DCU.

Superman opens in theaters on July 11, 2025.

- In This Article: Superman: Legacy
Release Date
July 11, 2025
- About The Author: David Thompson
As an editor, writer, and podcast host, David is a key member of The Direct. He is an expert at covering topics like Marvel, DC, Star Wars, and business-related news following the box office and streaming.