Zack Snyder’s four-hour Justice League cut finally hit HBO Max this week, and perhaps it’s the length of the film itself that’s delayed some reactions to what’s inside the reimagined superhero team-up. There are some big differences in the film, starting with a much more robust role and backstory for Cyborg. But that’s just the start of the changes for the R-rated film. And interestingly, one of the biggest fan reactions online was to the movie’s big bad, Steppenwolf.
Sure, he’s only one of the bad guys in the movie, with Darkseid looming large over everything in the Justice League universe. But he’s the one doing all of the work, searching the globe for the motherboxes he needs to be redeemed among his marauding conqueror brethren.
His new look in the Snyder Cut initially drew a lot of jokes when we first got a look at him last year. But after four hours of battling and anguish (mild spoilers ahead), people had a much different read on the character. A lot of people, well, thought he looked kind of adorable.
Everyone: “Cute, evil villains don’t exi-“
Steppenwolf: “” pic.twitter.com/LGRTqHdD0M
— Gabriel Ortiz (@LifeWithZitro) March 20, 2021
this is such a cute look for Steppenwolf we love a lil off-the-shoulder moment pic.twitter.com/9rLrphC7f9
— ned (@ned_not_ed) March 18, 2021
Darkseid : Desaad prepare the armadaSteppenwolf : hold on I’ll come with youDarkseid : no
Steppenwolf : pic.twitter.com/r1Qx6G9bBk
— Kae Unsane | #ZackSnydersJusticeLeague (@Unsane16) March 20, 2021
Goodnight to Steppenwolf only pic.twitter.com/PySSbz30wc
— MekareMadnessAssociateProducer (@MekareMadness) March 20, 2021
Steppenwolf has such a cute face lmao, look at this https://t.co/CkEYYH0s3A
— Rebecca Y. Lee (@aquariuschicken) March 20, 2021
WB: We can’t use your Steppenwolf Zack, he’s too scary.
Everyone else: Darkseid please accept Steppenwolf back he’s sorry. Look at those eyes. He’s learned his lesson. pic.twitter.com/E4JuBaKaKv
— #RestoreTheSnyderVerse. #SnyderCut OUT NOW (@RestoreSnyder) March 19, 2021
A mashup of Steppenwolf from the new cut even got the fancam treatment.
steppenwolf fan cam pic.twitter.com/hY0SUHksZA
— Gene Park, CEO of Pizza Butt (@GenePark) March 20, 2021
Fans actually felt bad that Steppenwolf tried very hard to keep up his end of the bargain and find redemption, only to not get much help from the other bad guys in the movie.
Steppenwolf when he realized Darkseid was just watching and not joining to help him pic.twitter.com/n5S9OzOtsv
— Plathanos #HIVESZN (@SavinTheBees) March 20, 2021
even Steppenwolf can’t escape capitalism pic.twitter.com/kUe7IZYNhJ
— v (@karazorlls) March 19, 2021
Steppenwolf looked like he wanted to cry when DeSaad said this pic.twitter.com/eS5Fei4Ycc
— T’Challa Stan #TeamKong (@KhameekJ03) March 20, 2021
desaad: you still owe darkseid 50,000 more worlds before we will even consider letting you come back home
— ellis (@w0rstknightmare) March 19, 2021
Steppenwolf when he found he had 50,000 worlds left to conquer for his punishment: pic.twitter.com/t12F1hn5Z0
— Walt (@UberKryptonian) March 19, 2021
Some fans even pitched that Steppenwolf was the real hero of the Snyder Cut.
Hear me out..Superman is the real villain of the #SnyderCut. Steppenwolf was exiled from Apokolips and he only wanted to return home. Superman, and the Justice League, prevented that from happening and in the end killed him. Look him in the eye and tell me I’m wrong. He was sad. pic.twitter.com/v80sjSFjrN
— Krypton Caged | 03.18.21 (@kryptoncaged) March 20, 2021
Whether that’s a bit too far is all your call, of course. But there’s a lot of movie there, so it’s no surprise that there are plenty of different interpretations of it all when you finally see it.