People that criticize the Marvel Cinematic Universe for having a villain problem should take a good look at the DCEU, which has arguably fared much worse when it comes to memorable antagonists. Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, Suicide Squad, Wonder Woman and Justice League all focused on third act battles between the heroes and poorly rendered CGI villains, and the end result in every case was a blur of pixels and sloppy visual effects that was more reminiscent of a video game cut scene than a major comic book blockbuster.
Justice League‘s Steppenwolf in particular is one of the worst bad guys to ever appear in the superhero genre, and you get the distinct impression that the character was cobbled together as fast as possible in post-production to suit Joss Whedon’s take on the material after he extensively reworked Zack Snyder’s contributions to the epic ensemble flick.
Ciaran Hinds is an actor capable of delivering menacing performances at the drop of a hat, but he didn’t seem to have much interest in lending Steppenwolf any gravitas when he was in the recording booth. That being said, the 67 year-old admitted in a recent interview that he’s looking forward to the Snyder Cut as much as the rest of us, saying:
“It was his dream to realise it, and I think it’s fantastic that he’s got this opportunity to realize what he wanted to do in the first place. He has the chance to recreate what he wanted to do and I hope it stands up to the trial it’s been given.”
You can’t really fault an actor’s vocal performance when the visuals were never up to scratch in the first place, but the single low resolution image we’ve seen of the redesigned Steppenwolf already appears to be ten times superior to the one we got in the theatrical edition. The big bad looks much, much better, and maybe Hinds’ dialogue will resonate stronger now that he actually looks like he poses a threat to the Justice League instead of being a minor inconvenience.