The Flash Movie Confirms Return to Man of Steel Time Period

By Klein Felt Posted:
Henry Cavill, Michael Shannon, DC Characters

New info regarding The Flash confirmed the film will return to Man of Steel's time period within the DCU.

After years of waiting, Ezra Miller's DC solo story is finally looming on the horizon. 

Much has been made about The Flash's Multiversal ties with the DCU, honoring not just the current on-screen DC canon, but the long history the franchise has had in movie theaters dating back to movies like 1989's Batman and 1978's Superman

Audiences have seen these touchstones take shape in the brief snippets and trailers shown from the film so far. 

And while it was known that the likes of Micheal Keaton's Batman would be popping up in the super-powered epic, recent revelations hinted at the film going back to where the Zack Snyder-led DC Universe all started. 

The Flash's Jaunt Down DC Memory Lane

Zod DC
Warner Bros. Pictures

The official plot description for DC Studios' The Flash revealed that the film will largely take place in 2013, during an alternate version of the events of Man of Steel

The description (as reported by ToyArk) noted that the upcoming blockbuster will see "Barry Allen [arrive] in an alternate 2013" as seen in Zack Snyder's DCEU debut. 

It is from here that Ezra Miller's Scarlet Speedster seeks out "his friend and mentor Bruce Wayne;" however, realizes that "the Multiverse is different on all fronts" with this world's Bruce being "long-retired from service:"

 "When Barry Allen arrives in an alternate 2013, he urgently seeks out the expertise of his friend and mentor Bruce Wayne – but the one he finds in the Multiverse is different on all fronts: older, long-retired from service as Gotham City’s protector and somehow even more hardened than the billionaire superhero Barry has grown to know. With a global threat on the horizon, Bruce Wayne must decide whether he can become Batman once more."

During the recently release Super Bowl trailer for The Flash, the first hints of this jump back in time were sprinkled. During the teaser, Keaton's Bruce directly referenced Barry Allen "go[ing] into the past:"

Bruce Wayne: "If you were to go into the past, you have no idea what the consequences would be."

Barry Allen : "Bruce, I can fix things."

Bruce: "You could also destroy everything."

Barry: "This can't be happening, I completely broke the universe."

Zod: "We've been waiting for you."

Other Universe Barry: "I created a world with no metahumans, and now there's no one to defend us."

This "past" comment, while undetected by fans at the time, was likely the first confirmation that the film would explore events of some prior DC films.  

The 2013 reveal further justifies Michael Shannon's Man of Steel villain General Zod popping up in the DC blockbuster and the inclusion of the World Engine seen in the climax of Henry Cavill's first go-round as Superman

What is Going On in The Flash?

Zod Engine
DC Studios

Now that this 2013 detail is out there, The Flash and its Multiversal plot are starting to make a lot more sense. 

When fans first saw Zod pop up in the recently released trailer for the film, it was a little shocking. That was amplified even further when Man of Steel's destructive World Engine was referenced, although the picture is starting to become a whole lot clearer now.

This is not the first time the close ties with Man of Steel have been bandied about in relation to The Flash. A previous synopsis for the film mentioned Ezra Miller's Barry Allen traversing the Multiverse to "change the events of the past;" however, when the young hero accidentally alters the future he goes searching to save an "imprisoned Kryptonian… albeit not the one he’s looking for."

“Worlds collide in ‘The Flash”’ when Barry uses his superpowers to travel back in time in order to change the events of the past. But when his attempt to save his family inadvertently alters the future, Barry becomes trapped in a reality in which General Zod has returned, threatening annihilation, and there are no Super Heroes to turn to. That is, unless Barry can coax a very different Batman out of retirement and rescue an imprisoned Kryptonian... albeit not the one he’s looking for.”

This is likely in reference to Shannon's General Zod. Then, upon releasing the legacy DC villain in this world that Miller's Barry has referred to as one "with no metahumans," Zod is able to easier complete his plan that was cut short by Henry Cavill's Superman in Man of Steel

Warner Bros. Pictures

So would this cause the universe-hopping hero to grab a Superman-type from another universe? Or perhaps awaken one within this alternate 2013 universe? 

This looks to be the case with Sahsa Calle's Supergirl set to play a key role in the film. And in the absence of a Superman, she could be the key to foiling Zod's plan yet again.

The Flash can be seen when it races into theaters on June 16. 

- In This Article: The Flash
Release Date
June 16, 2023
- About The Author: Klein Felt
Klein Felt is a Senior Editor at The Direct. Joining the website back in 2020, he helped jumpstart video game content on The Direct. Klein plays a vital role as a part of the site's content team, demonstrating expertise in all things PlayStation, Marvel, and the greater entertainment industry.