A ruthless warrior from the planet Apokolips, General Steppenwolf conquered countless planets in the name of his nephew and master, Darkseid, before a failure caused him to be exiled from his home. He planned to regain his honor via a second chance at this victory, but he failed this as well.
Five thousand years ago, Steppenwolf lead his army to Earth by the orders of his nephew and master, Lord Darkseid, intent on paving the way for Apokoliptian priests to use the three Mother Boxes to transform the planet into a twisted mirror reflection of his home planet. An alliance of Amazons, Atlanteans, Green Lanterns, all the tribes of man and even the ancient gods, stood to oppose him. The tide turned against Steppenwolf and his Mother Boxes were captured before they could transform the planet. Driven mad at the loss of his greatest weapon, Steppenwolf had to be dragged back onto his ship by his own men as they retreated back into space. The humiliated conqueror swore that the alliance of his enemies would crumble, Earth would be consumed by darkness and that he would return when it did to finish what he started.
Disgraced and humiliated by his first retreat, Steppenwolf was exiled from Apokolips for shaming his king. For millennia, Steppenwolf wandered the stars with his army of Parademons, waiting for the day his Mother Boxes would signal him.
In 2015, Steppenwolf received a message from Earth telling him that it was defenseless, and their greatest champion lay dead. Eager for this second chance, Steppenwolf prepared to invade once again.
Two years after receiving the message, Steppenwolf and his armies came to Earth to reclaim the Mother Boxes and the world in the name of Darkseid. However, they were thwarted not only by Earth's resurrected champion, but by five others that Lex Luthor, the man who sent the message, neglected to mention. Fearing for his life, his Parademons smelled the terror on him and dragged Steppenwolf through a Boom Tube back to his ship, possibly killing him, before he could terraform Earth and regain his lost honor.
Zack Snyder's Justice League
This section of the history covers the events of the 2021 director's cut Zack Snyder's Justice League. Part of this contradicts the cinematic release of the 2017 movie Justice League. All or part of this section may no longer be valid for the rest of the DC Extended Universe.
In an alternate telling of the above events, it was Darkseid himself who led the invasion of Earth, and he did not banish Steppenwolf for it. Rather, at some point Steppenwolf betrayed his nephew to enemies who hoped to steal the throne of Apokolips. Though Steppenwolf had a change of heart and crushed the rebellion, Darkseid was so furious that he exiled Steppenwolf, tasking him with conquering 150,000 worlds as a debt before he would consider allowing his uncle to return.
After Superman's death, the Mother Boxes reawakened, luring Steppenwolf to Earth. Steppenwolf and his Parademon army arrived on Themyscira, where they slaughtered the Amazons to claim their Mother Box. Steppenwolf then traveled to an abandoned city in Russia, where he began to construct a stronghold. Hippolyta alerted her daughter Wonder Woman - who had been working with Batman to form the Justice League - that Steppenwolf had invaded.
Steppenwolf captured and interrogated several Atlanteans to learn of the location of the Atlantean Mother Box. After obtaining the information, Steppenwolf teleported to Atlantis, where he faced off against Mera and other Atlanteans. Aquaman intervened, but was unable to prevent Steppenwolf from claiming the Mother Box and bringing it to his stronghold. After obtaining the second box, Steppenwolf was shown a vision revealing that the Anti-Life Equation was present on Earth. After alerting DeSaad of his discovery, Darkseid agreed to finally redeem Steppenwolf if he did not fail and ordered him to prepare for his arrival.
Steppenwolf and the parademons traveled to Gotham City to interrogate those who carried the scent of the third Mother Box, where he engaged in his first battle with the Justice League. The battle ended in a draw, and Steppenwolf retreated. The Justice League then activated the third Mother Box to resurrect Superman, alerting Steppenwolf of its location. Steppenwolf managed to obtain the Mother Box, but before he claimed it, Silas Stone sacrificed himself to super-heat the box. This allowed the Justice League to learn of the location of Steppenwolf's stronghold.
The Justice League arrived in Russia, and a massive battle ensued. Steppenwolf nearly overpowered the League, but the resurrected Superman arrived and dominated the New God. Aquaman and Superman threw Steppenwolf into a boom tube to Apokolips, and Wonder Woman decapitated him as he flew back to his home world. An infuriated Darkseid crushed his uncle's severed head with his foot.
Powers and Abilities
- New God Physiology
- This version of the character is exclusive to the continuity of the DC Extended Universe and is an adaptation of Steppenwolf. The original character was created by Jack Kirby and first appeared in New Gods #7.
- Steppenwolf was played by Ciarán Hinds.
- Steppenwolf's design in the theatrical Justice League differs radically from his original design, which featured in his appearances in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Zack Snyder's Justice League. The original design is far more alien-like and serrated, with living metallic armor covered in spikes. His design in the theatrical Justice League is more humanoid and closer to his design from the comics. The design change was made after Batman v Superman received criticism for its dark tone, with Warner Bros. wanting Steppenwolf to be less frightening and more family-friendly than Snyder intended.
- Steppenwolf was originally planned to appear as the main antagonist of Suicide Squad; director/writer David Ayer intended to reveal that the Enchantress was actually Steppenwolf's puppet under the control of one of the Mother Boxes. Ayer had to scrap the idea around the time that the Justice League story underwent some changes, and Steppenwolf's role was taken by Incubus in the released film.
- 3 Appearances of Steppenwolf (DC Extended Universe)
- 6 Images featuring Steppenwolf (DC Extended Universe)
- 1 Quotations by or about Steppenwolf (DC Extended Universe)
- Character Gallery: Steppenwolf (DC Extended Universe)
- "Justice League"
- "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice"
- Zack Snyder's Justice League
- Justice League: Why Snyder's New Steppenwolf Design Looks So Different
|Jack Kirby's Fourth World |
This character or group of characters are related to Jack Kirby's Fourth World, either the original concept and group of titles by Jack Kirby, or any of their subsequent adaptations by other creators. This template will categorize articles that include it into the Fourth World Characters category.
This character is or was primarily an enemy of the Justice League, in any of its various incarnations. This template will categorize articles that include it into the category "Justice League Villains."
|Green Lantern Villain(s) |
This character is or was primarily an enemy of the Green Lantern of Earth, or the Green Lantern Corps as a whole. This template will categorize articles that include it into the category "Green Lantern Villains."