Michael Keaton Offers Quick, Easy Explanation To DC Time Travel

Written By Kieran Bugg and Mikey Sutton • Editor-in-Chief • Owner

Batman Beyond's Cancellation Leaves Michael Keaton's DC Future Doubtful

Michael Keaton’s Batman offers Ezra Miller a clear explanation of the effects of time travel in a new scene description from The Flash. Even after multiple rewrites, one major plot point of The Flash movie has always remained unchanged.

Since development on the film began, the plan was to incorporate the character’s ability to travel through time. Miller’s first DCEU appearance in Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice teased this during the infamous Knightmare sequence.

We see Barry Allen briefly travel back from this dystopian future to the present day. He warns Bruce Wayne (Ben Affleck) about Superman (Henry Cavill) and explains how Lois Lane (Amy Adams) is the key. But before he’s pulled back into the future, Wayne wakes up, indicating that the whole thing was just a dream.

However, it wasn’t a dream but rather a sinister premonition of what was supposed to come.

For 2017’s Justice League, director Zack Synder intended to show the Flash traveling back through time to save the world. Unfortunately, Warner Bros. and Joss Whedon’s disastrous changes to the theatrical version removed this epic sequence.

Nonetheless, it was thankfully restored for the release of The Snyder Cut on HBO Max and was universally praised by fans. Before Snyder’s vision was butchered by the studio, The Flash was originally intended to adapt the Flashpoint story.

Michael Keaton Offers Quick, Easy Explanation To DC Time Travel

Michael Keaton Offers Quick, Easy Explanation To DC Time Travel

Image: Warner Bros. Discovery

This would’ve seen Allen go back in time to prevent the murder of his mother, creating a new timeline. A new timeline that would eventually lead to the end of the world. While this plot point remains unchanged, the script has since been altered to include elements from the multiverse.

Instead of seeing a war between Themyscira and Atlantis, we see General Zod (Michael Shannon) return to end the world. Moreover, we also see the epic return of Michael Keaton as Batman after 31 years since his last appearance in Batman Returns.

The film’s original tale would’ve seen Jeffrey Dean Morgan’s Thomas Wayne in the role like in the source material. In addition, Superman’s role in the story has been filled in by Sasha Calle’s Supergirl, who’s been imprisoned on Earth.

All these changes to history has unsurprisingly left DC fans scratching their heads as to how time travel works here.

After all, Superman arrived on Earth long before Allen’s mother was murdered. Furthermore, Affleck’s Batman was more than likely already operating in Gotham City during this time.

So how could this change to the timeline effect the past as well as the future and also the multiverse?

According to Skiiwalker Tha Jedi, a scene in the film involving Michael Keaton and Miller’s explains this. Skiiwalker has seen The Flash.

Michael Keaton Offers Quick, Easy Explanation To DC Time Travel

Michael Keaton Offers Quick, Easy Explanation To DC Time Travel

Image: Warner Bros. Discovery

If that name sounds familiar, Skiiwalker is the one who started the now global #SellZSJLtoNetflix movement.

Whilst appearing on Syl Abdul’s YouTube show, Skiiwalker visually explains how time travel works in The Flash. Michael Keaton’s Batman believes that changing the past will bend off into a new tangent, thus creating a parallel universe.

Similar to the way Doc Brown described time travel in Back to the Future Part II.

However, just like Tony Stark and Bruce Banner in Avengers: Endgame, the Flash explains that this isn’t the case. But this is still a completely different take on time travel compared to the MCU’s rules on the subject. Instead, at the point of where the timeline is altered, an intersection is created which effects the past and future.

Thus, it reveals how Michael Keaton has always been Batman in this universe rather than Affleck.

This leaves the SnyderVerse timeline intact while also creating a new one with both meeting at the changing point. Indeed, the SnyderVerse is still out there and it’s completely unaffected by Allen going back to save his mom. Interestingly, Michael Keaton isn’t erased, either. Although DC Studios ended development on his Batman Beyond project, the temptation to resurrect it if The Flash is in sniffing distance of $1 billion global might be really tempting.