The film that will bring Batman and Superman together for the first time on the big screen still doesn't have an official title, but we may have just glimpsed a list of candidates.
The sequel to Zack Snyder's Man of Steel, which will feature Henry Cavill returning as Superman and Ben Affleck debuting as Batman, goes by many names around the web, depending on who you ask. The most popular improvised titles are Batman vs. Superman and Superman vs. Batman, thanks to both Snyder's Comic-Con tease that the film will feature a Dark Knight Returns-style duel between the two heroes and screenwriter David Goyer's open discussion of those names. There's also the somewhat less dramatic Superman/Batman or Batman/Superman, and of course World's Finest, the name of the comic book that featured the earliest Batman and Superman team-up stories.
Whatever you've been calling it, the fact is that Warner Bros. still haven't come right out and told us what they're calling it, four months after Snyder's Comic-Con announcement of the film. Granted, the studio's still got quite a bit of time to make up its mind before the film's summer 2015 release, but eventually it's going to want something to put on a teaser poster. And, of course, it's going to want an official website for the film. Today, it's the latter that gives us a new set of clues as to what the film's eventual title will be.
Fusible reports that Warner Bros. "secretly registered" a number of new domains this week with brand protection and domain registration company MarkMonitor, and they all seem to be potential titles for the Man of Steel sequel. Check out the list of potential titles below, and see if you notice a theme.
(Note: We've added the colons to the titles ourselves. For dramatic effect, you see.)
Man of Steel: Battle the Knight
Man of Steel: Black of Knight
Man of Steel: Darkness Falls
Man of Steel: Knight Falls or Man of Steel: Knightfalls, perhaps
Man of Steel: Shadow of the Night
Man of Steel: The Blackest Hour
Man of Steel: The Darkness Within
Almost all of those subtitles also have their own domain registry without the words "Man of Steel," and another domain was registered that simply read "Beyond Darkness."
So, what can we learn from these? Well, for starters, Warner Bros. is apparently super into using Batman's "The Dark Knight" nickname to form puns about nighttime. It's amazing that they managed to resist the urge to make "Shadow of the Night" into "Shadow of the Knight." They also seem determined to make it known right up front that they're really excited about making this movie dark. With the exception of "Battle the Knight," which itself could still be read as a reference to fighting against darkness, every one of them is a direct reference to something dark, and some of them -- like "The Blackest Hour" and "The Darkness Within" -- sound downright bleak. So I guess we shouldn't expect Batman to carry around any shark repellant this time out.
If these domain names are to be believed, Warner Bros. is at least settling on a theme for the title, if not the actual title itself yet. These might not be the only candidates, and they might not even be the frontrunners, but they do give at least a little insight into what the tone of the next film might be. And given the city-leveling insanity at the end of Man of Steel, we're not exactly surprised.
What do you think? Do any of these titles work for you, or would you prefer the cleaner, simpler Superman vs. Batman?