All right, so let me just get this out of the way, I like Marvel and DC films But with the exception of Wonder Woman every DCEU movie has been heavily panned by the critics, So why are the Marvel films significantly more acclaimed and successful than the DC films? Well the DC EU has a few glaring issues There’s the issue of a heavy reliance on spectacle over story There’s also the issue of straying too far away from the roots of the characters. There’s the lack of actual character development There’s the mustache. But the biggest problem that the DCEU has isn’t related to the actual films. The biggest issue is simply how Warner Brothers has chosen to structure their franchise. Now I know what you’re thinking other breaking news But go with me on this. The MCU started in 2008 with ‘Iron Man,’ from that point forward every single film was a thoughtful cog in the ‘Avenger’ building machine. It took four years to get to the Avengers and by that time we were totally invested in these characters. The DCEU began in 2013 with ‘Man of Steel,’ there was then a three year gap of absolutely nothing before 2016’s ‘Batman v. Superman’ That means that over the course of three years, which is an eternity when it comes to comic book movies, no world-building had taken place. Four years after ‘Man of Steel,’ we got ‘Justice League.’ The same amount of time it took for Marvel to journey from ‘Iron Man’ to the ‘Avengers’ The problem is that while Marvel milked these four years for every last drop, The DCEU, well, they completely wasted this time. While it’s only one less film, ‘Suicide Squad’ had little relevance in regards to ‘Justice League’ and only two of these films were dedicated to one hero and key characters like the Flash and Aquaman and Cyborg didn’t even get their own movies and really that’s not even a total necessity. Marvel effectively introduced Black Widow in ‘Iron Man 2’ and ‘Hawkeye’ in ‘Thor.’ But the DCEU introduced us to main heroes like this: So here is my ideal DCEU schedule. For the sake of being fair, I will use all pre-existing DCEU films and try to leave the plots as unchanged as possible. The Nolan films would be too fresh in the minds of the audience by the time the DCEU kicked off in 2013 so we obviously don’t start with Batman And instead of ‘Man of Steel,’ we start off with a slightly adjusted ‘Wonder Woman’ film. This makes sense being that ‘Wonder Woman’ takes place back in time and a female hero would be an exciting fresh way to kick off a universe. Next up, we have a solo ‘Batman’ movie in 2014. This movie focuses on the grizzled weathered Batman that we got in ‘Batman v. Superman.’ But with his own movie we had at least two hours of character building and motivation which we will need leading into 2015’s ‘Man of Steel.’ ‘Man of Steel’ stays relatively unchanged but we feature Bruce Wayne during the third acts destruction of Metropolis. Now this moment has much better payoff, being that we have already spent an entire movie with Bruce. In the spring of 2016 we get ‘Wonder Woman 2’ which takes place back in time again Like Marvel gave Tony Stark two films before ‘The Avengers,’ this will help establish one of the strongest characters even further. In the summer of 2016, we get ‘Batman v. Superman.’ This is just a few months later than the film’s actual release But now with all these characters having their own movies, we actually care about them. And imagine Wonder Woman making her grand entrance if we had two full Wonder Woman movies prior to her making her big return to the battlefield. In 2017, we get an ‘Aquaman’ movie in the summer and a ‘Flash’ movie in the winter. These films can take place either before or after the events of ‘Batman v. Superman.’ But releasing them after prevents the DCEU from getting bogged down leading up to the first team up film. In the summer of 2018, we get ‘Justice League’ which introduces us to Cyborg in the first act, being that he is key in the hunt for the mother boxes. Ideally he would get a standalone movie first, but 7 pre-‘Justice League’ movies is already quite a lot. So his solo movie will kick off phase 2, along with ‘Batman 2,’ ‘Man of Steel 2’ and a slightly hopefully majorly adjusted ‘Suicide Squad.’ With ‘Justice League’ having proper build up, we now know these characters, we have invested time in these characters, and hopefully we care about these characters. But what good is all of this rearranging if the movies still underwhelmed? Well with this new timetable a lot of the issues kind of work themselves out ‘Batman vs Superman’ becomes less bloated not having to cram in so much backstory. I think ‘Man of Steel’ works better taking place in a universe that feels lived-in. And ‘Justice League’ has the potential to become a fully realized film. The bottom line is that the DCEU needs to stop playing catch-up with Marvel and a race that they simply can’t win. Marvel started first, let them cross the finish line first. And I think we’re all ok with waiting a little bit longer if it means better films. And hey, for the record you’re allowed to like both. Be nice to each other.