10 Missing Superman Villains The DCU Can Adapt To Live-Action For The First Time

Summary

  • DCU reboot introduces potential new villains for live-action Superman, expanding the roster for the Man of Steel’s cinematic battles.
  • Mongul, Kobra, Blaze, Imperiex, and more offer a fresh dynamic for Superman’s on-screen adversaries, promising intense confrontations and intricate plots.
  • With a rich array of untapped villains like Vril Dox and Titano, DCU’s Superman films could explore new cinematic territory while honoring comic book roots.



In the multitude of Superman movies and television series, several key villains have never been adapted to live-action and would be ideal for the DCU. The DCU reboot has an array of potential villains to choose from for the DCU’s Superman movie and beyond. While many have already been adapted in some form, some key examples are yet to make the leap into live-action.

Numerous live-action DC movies and television series have depicted Superman’s infamous villains, with some familiar faces for comic fans cropping up across the span of the Man Of Steel’s on-screen history. For example, Superman’s oldest foe, Ultra-Humanite, made his live-action debut in Stargirl. Brainiac, who has been long-awaited in a Superman movie, previously appeared in both Smallville and Krypton. However, some other notable wrongdoers have never been adapted to live-action, and should be considered for the DCU’s Superman.


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10 Mongul Could Be A Perfect Darkseid Replacement

First Appeared In DC Comics Presents #27 (November 1980)

Mongul is a tyrannical DC villain who embodies sheer brutality and ruthless ambition. As a potential live-action villain, his imposing stature and merciless demeanor make him a formidable adversary. With a history of conquering entire planets and manipulating powerful beings like Superman, Mongul’s presence on screen could evoke fear and tension. His complex motivations, driven by a desire for power and control, could provide rich material for character exploration. Moreover, Mongul’s strategic prowess and penchant for psychological manipulation make him a compelling successor to the DCEU’s Darkseid as a primary antagonist in the DCU’s Superman movie.


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9 Kobra Would Be a Dynamic Superman Villain

First Appeared In Kobra #1 (February 1976)

Kobra Cult assembles in DC Comics.

Kobra is a classic DC villain and has seen iterations ranging from individual foes to an international terrorist organization. Initially portrayed by two distinct villains, Kobra evolved into a formidable group frequently engaging the Justice League in battle.


A live-action Superman movie featuring Kobra as an organization for the hero to combat offers a fresh dynamic for Superman, promising intense confrontations and intricate plots akin to those seen by the group’s animated iterations. With its global reach and fanatical devotion, Kobra presents Superman with a multifaceted challenge, showcasing the hero’s resilience and strategic prowess against a relentless foe.

8 Vril Dox Is The Heir To Brainiac

First Appeared In Superman #167 (February 1964)

superman reaching out to vril dox in dc comics

Vril Dox, the son of the classic Superman villain Brainiac, presents a compelling opportunity for an antagonist. Possessing his father’s advanced intellect and technological prowess, Dox is a master manipulator with a penchant for orchestrating intricate schemes. His complex relationship with Superman, rooted in both familial ties and ideological differences, adds layers of depth to his character.


As a live-action villain, Dox’s cunning strategies and relentless pursuit of power would provide riveting conflict. Furthermore, exploring his internal struggle between his heritage and his own ambitions could offer nuanced character development, making him a villain that could change and grow in the DCU alongside Superman himself.

7 Blaze And Satanus Would Make Terrifying Villains

First Appeared In Action Comics #655 (July 1990)

split image of lord satanus and blaze from DC comics panels

Blaze and Satanus, DC Comics’ demonic siblings, possess immense power and a sinister presence, making them ideal candidates for live-action Superman adversaries. Both boast a litany of formidable powers, including Blaze’s mastery over flame, and Satanus’ cunning intellect and brute force – offering a dynamic duo of villains capable of challenging Superman physically and psychologically. Their familial rivalry and thirst for domination could drive a gripping narrative, introducing supernatural and even potential horror elements to a live-action Superman movie. Their demonic origins and relentless pursuit of chaos would test Superman’s limits, showcasing his resilience against otherworldly threats.


6 Chemo Is A Mighty Living Weapon

First Appeared In Showcase #39 (July–August 1962)

Chemo stepping on something in DC Comics

Chemo is a terrifying DC villain who would make an imposing live-action Superman foe. Born from toxic chemicals and nuclear waste, Chemo is a walking, sentient mass of corrosive substances, capable of unleashing devastating destruction. His grotesque appearance and unstoppable nature evoke fear and urgency, providing a formidable challenge for heroes like Superman or the Justice League. Chemo’s origin story also offer opportunities to explore themes of environmental destruction and the consequences of unchecked industrialization. As a relentless force of chaos, Chemo promises thrilling action sequences and a sense of impending doom, making him a compelling Superman adversary.


5 Gog Is A Formidable Superman Villain

First Appeared In New Year’s Evil: Gog #1 (February 1998)

gog in dc comics stanind with arms outstretched and the justice league flying behind

Gog is a complex and enigmatic DC villain with a huge range of potent powers. Possessing godlike abilities and a warped sense of justice, Gog presents a formidable challenge, even killing Superman in one classic comic storyline. His ambiguous motivations, stemming from a desire to enforce his vision of righteousness, add nuance to his character and provoke thought-provoking moral dilemmas. Gog’s ability to manipulate time and reality offers visually stunning possibilities for cinematic storytelling, with epic battles and mind-bending confrontations. Gog would test the physical limits of the heroes, posing a threat that could carry several DCU movies.


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4 Imperiex Is DC’s Galactus

First Appeared In Superman (Vol. 2) #153 (February 2000)

Imperiex, DC Comics’ formidable cosmic villain, embodies a grandeur and threat akin to Marvel’s Galactus. As a being of immense power and cosmic significance, Imperiex stands as a universal threat capable of challenging the mightiest heroes. His goal to annihilate entire galaxies to facilitate the birth of a new universe gives the villain a sense of impending doom that is perfect for live-action movies. Imperiex’s imposing presence, intricate armor, and sheer destructive force offer cinematic spectacle and epic confrontations comparable to the MCU’s Thanos. His role could explore existential themes and the heroes’ struggle against insurmountable odds, making him an ideal blockbuster villain.


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3 Kalibak Is Darkseid’s Son

First Appeared In New Gods #1 (February 1971)

kalibak in dc comics holding superman upside down

Kalibak is the brutish son of DC Comics’ Darkseid. With his towering stature, savage strength, and loyalty to his father, Kalibak embodies ferocity and ruthlessness. His complex relationship with Darkseid, fraught with a desire to prove himself worthy, adds profundity to his character arc. In a live-action movie, Kalibak’s imposing presence and primal aggression would provide thrilling action sequences and intense confrontations with heroes like Superman. Furthermore, delving into his inner conflict and family ties could offer poignant moments amidst the chaos, making him a perfect addition to the DC cinematic universe – building upon Darkseid’s appearance in the DCEU.


2 Scorch Is A Villainous Supergirl

First Appeared In Superman (Vol. 2) #160

scorch in dc comics flying through space

Scorch is DC Comics’ demonic doppelgänger of Supergirl from an alternate universe created by Joker. Possessing fiery powers and a sinister demeanor, Scorch is a formidable adversary who frequently encounters the Justice League. Her dark reflection of Supergirl’s powers and persona adds depth to their conflict, exploring themes of identity and duality.

In a live-action setting, Scorch’s menacing presence and connection with Superman’s cousin would offer thrilling action sequences and compelling character dynamics. Additionally, her demonic origins provide a supernatural element that could elevate the stakes and intrigue audiences, making her an excellent addition to a Superman film that also has the potential to set the stage for the DCU’s Supergirl movie as well.


1 Titano The Super-Ape Would Make An Interesting Choice

First Appeared In Superman #127 (February 1959)

Titano, the Super-Ape, offers a unique and entertaining prospect as a live-action Superman villain. Originally an ordinary ape sent into space, exposure to cosmic radiation granted him immense strength, intelligence, and powerful optic beams. His colossal size and primal rage make for visually stunning confrontations, promising epic battles against the Man of Steel. Titano’s tragic origin, and animalistic instincts, could make a thrilling departure from classic superhero villains​​​​​​. Incorporating him into a live-action Superman film would provide thrilling action sequences and an opportunity to explore new cinematic territory for Superman while recalling his comic book history.


  • Superman Legacy Comic Cover

    Superman (2025)

    Release Date
    July 11, 2025

    Cast
    David Corenswet , Rachel Brosnahan , María Gabriela De Faría

Key Release Dates