The New Gods from the planet Apokolips.
- "The bell has already been rung, and they've heard it out in the dark among the stars..."— Lex Luthor
- Aliens are Bastards: They make a habit of violently conquering planets and twist them into the likeness of their own homeworld.
- Alien Blood: New Gods blood is apparently purple, as can be seen after Superman punches Steppenwolf.
- Comic-Book Movies Don't Use Codenames: The names "Apokolips" and "Apokoliptians" have yet to be mentioned in the DCEU regarding Steppenwolf's homeworld. He did talk about "New Gods" and "Darkseid", so it's safe to say they can be used.
- Composite Character: Their ability to use fear as a weapon and their conflicts with the Green Lantern Corps are derived from the Sinestro Corps.
- Dark Is Evil: They favor dark costumes and then there is their leader's name...
- Divine Conflict: Against the Olympians during Steppenwolf's first invasion of Earth, which he lost.
- Hostile Terraforming: Their method of conquest requires the Mother Boxes' Unity to turn the planet they seek to dominate into a new Apokolips.
- Mile-Long Ship: The flasghip Steppenwolf used during his first invasion of Earth was gigantic.
- Obviously Evil: They have a Horde of Alien Locusts for foot soldiers called Parademons, Steppenwolf looks positively demonic and so are their sinister monks, and their supreme leader is described as a mind-breaking Eldritch Abomination.
- Our Wormholes Are Different: The Boom Tubes are their primary method of transportation.
- Rogues-Gallery Transplant: While Apokoliptians represent a threat for the DC Universe at large in the comics (one could argue the New Gods were themselves a Rogues-Gallery Transplant in the main DCU since Jack Kirby's Fourth World stories in which they first appeared were self-contained), the Green Lantern Corps as a whole doesn't fight them due to a truce with the Guardians of Oa (which obviously doesn't apply to individual members such as the Justice League's Green Lanterns). Here, the Corps are enemies to Apokolips, sworn to defend any planet they try to conquer, such as the Earth when Steppenwolf tried to invade it.
- Sufficiently Advanced Alien: They are an immortal, god-like race with highly advanced technology at their disposal, unlike the Olympian Gods.
- Time Abyss: They have been around at least since the time the Olympian gods walked the Earth.
Species: New God
Played by: Ray Porter (Deleted Role)
Appearances: Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (hinted at) | Justice League (Deleted Role, mentioned)
Other appearances: Justice League: The Art of the Film (concept art)
- "For the Unity! For Darkseid!"— Steppenwolf
The most powerful of the New Gods, and the evil ruler of Apokolips.
- Aborted Arc: The whole arc that started with the Bad Future of Batman v Superman was leading to his coming on Earth in Justice League. That arc was removed from the movie when Zack Snyder left the post-production.
- Ancient Astronauts: He showed up on Earth in ancient times, as he is represented above the three Mother Boxes on the walls of an ancient crypt built by the Amazons. Diana explores it in a deleted scene of Justice League, as shown by stills Zack Snyder shared on the social media Vero.
- And Your Little Dog, Too!: The reason behind Superman turning evil in the "Knightmare" from Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice was explained by Zack Snyder, about the original script for Justice League (the 2017 theatrical movie rendered it an Aborted Arc): Darkseid Boom-Tubed himself in the Batcave where Lois Lane was sheltered, and killed her, which made Superman snap. He then used the Anti-Life Equation on the broken Man of Steel, causing his FaceHeel Turn.
- The Bad Guy Wins: Batman's nightmare in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is essentially a Bad Future in which Darkseid managed to conquer the Earth and turned Superman into a tyrant that would carry out his will. Zack Snyder confirmed he did so thanks to the Anti-Life Equation.
- Blade on a Stick: The concept art revealed in Justice League: The Art of the Film as well as set photos and stills of the deleted scene of the Amazonian crypt depict him carrying an alien-looking polearm.
- The Corrupter: Implied to have been this to Superman in the Bad Future that is seen in the Knightmare, and it was later confirmed by Zack Snyder. While Superman still grieved over the death of Lois, he didn't have a FaceHeel Turn until Darkseid subjugated him with the Anti-Life Equation.
- The Dreaded: Lex Luthor's frightening words at the end of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice imply the Earth would have very good reasons to fear him.Luthor: He's hungry, he's found us, and HE'S COMING!
- Foreshadowing: While he does not actually appear in Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice, Batman has a dream about Superman (and his personal army) being helped by Parademons, which comic fans will readily recognize as Darkseid's handiwork. The giant Omega symbol that was carved on the wasteland in Batman's nightmare also leaves zero doubt about Darkseid's presence in the setting. Then Steppenwolf refers to him by his name in Justice League.
- Freeze-Frame Bonus: Some of the Foreshadowing mentioned above fits in this category.
- The giant Omega symbol in Batman's Bad Future nightmare.
- A closeup of the painting in Lex Luthor's mansion shows that the leader of the demonic hordes has a face that looks a lot like Darkseid.
- Frontline General: Uxas (a younger Darkseid) was originally intended to lead the Apokoliptian invasion of Earth in ancient times. He was eventually replaced by Steppenwolf in post-production. Zack Snyder said he invaded Earth in search of the Anti-Life Equation.
- The Ghost: Remains unseen, but Steppenwolf is clearly heard saying "For Darkseid!" at one point in Justice League. It's also implied that the Boom Tube that brings Steppenwolf back to Apokolips after his defeat against the Justice League was Darkseid's doing.
- God of Evil: The God of Tyranny to be precise.
- Greater-Scope Villain: Like many of his other incarnations across DC media adaptations, he's shaping up to be the most powerful threat to the Justice League and Earth in general, if not to the universe itself.
- Humanoid Abomination: Strongly implied. Being in indirect contact with him drives Lex Luthor absolutely insane.
- Walking Shirtless Scene: The concept art from Justice League: The Art of the Film depicts him leading his troops to battle bare-chested.
Species: New God
Played by: Ciarán Hinds
Dubbed by: Féodor Atkine (French), Humberto Vélez (Latin-American Spanish), Sergio Fortuna (Brazilian Portuguese)
Appearances: Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justicenote | Justice League
- "No protectors here. No Lanterns. No Kryptonian. This world will fall, like all the others!"
A New God from Apokolips, the uncle of Darkseid and his fallen herald. He led an unsuccessful invasion of the Earth millennia ago and makes his return after the death of Superman. He is the first major threat the newly put-together Justice League has to confront.
- Adaptational Badass: In most other portrayals, Steppenwolf... was actually relatively weak for a New God, to the point where Superman or Wonder Woman alone could usually handle him. The past had him strong enough to justify the Atlanteans, Amazons, Green Lantern Corps, and various other forces of man unite to take down his invasion.
- Adaptation Dye-Job: His eyes are pale blue, as opposed to glowing red as they are in the comics.
- Adaptational Ugliness: In the New 52 comics he's primarily based on, Steppenwolf looks human (though his skin and eye colour may vary). Here, his skin resembles scar tissue and he has chin horns.
- An Axe to Grind: His Weapon of Choice is the Electro-Axe. At its most powerful, a single strike from it packs one hell of a punch, sending a destructive shockwave in a several hundred foot-radius.
- Armored Villains, Unarmored Heroes: He is more armored than any hero of the Justice League. Particularly true when he goes against Wonder Woman, who doesn't wear a helmet and whose limbs are not fully covered in armor.
- Arrow Catch: Catches an arrow shot at him by Hippolyta during the battle on Themyscira. Later in the film, he proves strong enough to catch a military-grade rocket fired from Batman's crawler mech.
- Artifact of Doom: He comes back to Earth to gather the three Mother Boxes and terraform the Earth with their combination.
- Badass Boast: He has a few:
- "My axe is slick with the blood of your sisters!" (to Wonder Woman)
- "So, you have the blood of the old gods in you... Old gods died!" (to Wonder Woman again)
- Beard of Evil: He has horns on his chin, and they look like a beard from a distance.
- Be Careful What You Wish For: After working to earn back his place in Apokolips for the entire film, he's dragged back through a Boom Tube at the last second before he is torn apart by his own Parademons. Of course, Darkseid really doesn't take kindly to those who fail him.
- Big Bad: The main antagonist in Justice League.
- Blood Knight: Steppenwolf is described as this by Diana. She notes that in his first invasion, he had technology that far outclassed Earth, and yet he wasn't content with simple subjugation but wanted to lead armies and slaughter people in person. He's more cautious the second time, but he is thrilled when he gets to battle, first the Amazons, and then Diana. In the finale, when Diana goads him to battle, he willingly jumps in.
- Cold-Blooded Torture: He submits the kidnapped STAR Labs scientists to this. When Silas Stone insists that he will die before he tells him where the Mother Box is, Steppenwolf gloats about how Silas doesn't whine but he's going to scream. This is pretty accurate since the one thing all Apokoliptans have in common in the comics is a love for torture.
- Combat Pragmatist: In contrast to his Blood Knight and straightforward methods during the first invasion (and likely, his previous wars of conquest), Steppenwolf recognizes that he doesn't have anywhere near the necessary forces to conquer a much more populous and advanced Earth conventionally (his army only seems to consist of several thousands on top of being lightly equipped, tactically deficient, and very much vulnerable to small arms). So he settles for building a base in secret in an obscure area (the wilderness of northern Russia), from which he can use an Artifact of Doom to usher in global extinction before anyone knows what's happening. He makes extensive use of his teleportation via Boom Tubes to the maximum possible effect in order to put said artifact together as fast as possible, at one point even Boom Tubing to grab the Justice League's own Mother Box while they're distracted fighting Superman and then quickly teleporting away. It should also be noted that the sole reason he comes to Earth in Justice League is that Ares killing the Olympians and Doomsday killing Superman has left Earth bereft of powerful figures who could quickly track down and stop him.
- Companion Cube: He personifies his relationship with the Mother Boxes, addressing their combination as a religious artifact and calling it "Mother" and so on, when among New Gods, Mother Boxes are just massive supercomputer AIs. It's perhaps a sign of his insanity.note
- Composite Character: He borrows traits from several other New Gods: his desperation to please Darkseid comes from his great-nephew Kalibak, being the first foe of the newly-assembled League comes from the New 52 version of Darkseid, and his appearance resembles his brother Yuga Khan. His chin horns resemble those of Blue Devil meanwhile.
- Contrasting Sequel Antagonist:
- Lex Luthor was an Earthling who used his genius intellect to challenge Superman, Steppenwolf is an otherworldly being who relies purely on strength.
- While Steppenwolf and Ares are both gods that are adept in combat and both share similar powers and character designs (full black plate armor with horned helmets), Ares had a set of principles and was mainly a threat because of his skills at manipulation and persuasion; his physical power is downplayed, as he does not even kill a single person in the whole movie outside of a flashback, and only gets physical in his first and last scenes. Steppenwolf has no principles and cares little for free will, and is also The Brute who uses violence as a first resort and is only really threatening because of his doomsday weapon.
- Cool Helmet: He wears a helmet with two big horns, which was inspired by his New 52 counterpart. It's the only thing left behind when Darkseid forcibly teleports him back to Apokolips after his invasion of Earth fails.
- The Corrupter: Apparently, he corrupted Lex Luthor into helping him find the Mother Boxes. Not that he needed much effort.
- Defiant to the End: Even when his plan lies in shambles and there's nothing to gain from continuing to fight, he still keeps trying to kill the heroes. It ends up being his undoing, as they trounce him so thoroughly that he gets overwhelmed by fear and swarmed by his own Parademons.
- Dirty Old Man: He mentions that he wants to turn Themyscira into his own personal harem and that Hippolyta will "love him" as will all the rest of the Amazons.
- The Dragon: He is Darkseid's main enforcer... or at least, he was; his goal is to return to that position by finally conquering Earth.
- The Dreaded: Called "The End of Worlds" among the Amazons.
- Early-Bird Cameo: In the Ultimate Edition cut of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, a holographic projection of him appears to Lex Luthor inside the Kryptonian ship.
- Early Installment Character-Design Difference: Steppenwolf's holographic image wore less armour and his helmet-horns (though see below) curved out behind his head. When he's revealed in person, he's wearing bulky armour and the horns on his helmet point straight up. He also looked distinctly more monstrous and alien, with less human-like features (notably his helmet-horns weren't part of his helmet), which can be seen more clearly in concept art.
- Evil Albino: His skin is very pale and his eyes have only the faintest shade of blue in them.
- Evil Is Bigger: He's over eight feet tall with a heavy muscular build to match. Both Flash and Batman share Gallows Humor about his great height.
- Evil Sounds Deep: Played With. On the one hand, his voice is so heavy, he makes Batman's voice modulator sound like a 6-year-old. On the other hand, it's not the traditional "ominous gravelly menacing voice" type of deep; it's more of a weary, otherworldly vibe. The actor describes him as "old" and "tired".
- The Exile: In Justice League it is implied that he has been exiled from Apokolips due to his failure to conquer Earth and losing the Mother Boxes in the process.
- Feeling Their Age: According to Ciaran Hinds, working for Darkseid is wearing down on him. He's been waiting for millennia for his second chance in conquering Earth after his first banishment.
- Frontline General: He commands an elite Parademon force, but isn't afraid to get personal in the fight. He even insist to fight Wonder Woman by himself, though he does eventually order for a Parademon to finish her.
- Galactic Conqueror: His lines in the trailer implied that he has taken over several worlds before Earth. He tried to take over Earth in the distant past but failed.
- Generic Doomsday Villain: Played With. There is no given reason why Steppenwolf wanted to conquer Earth in the first place besides him coming from Apokolips which is a Planet of Hats of evil conquerors... that is, for his initial invasion in the flashback. His motive in the movie proper is expounded on slightly more as he briefly mentions that he has been in exile since his initial failure and this is his chance to get back in Darkseid's good graces again.
- Glowing Eyes of Doom: Once he gains all three Mother Boxes and combines them, his eyes emit a bright light.
- Götterdämmerung: He invokes the death of "the Old Gods" (the Olympian gods) when confronting Diana. He fought against them during his first invasion attempt on Earth, and they were apparently killed by Ares some time after said invasion. Said gods and their allies stopped him the first time he came, and he can't help but gloat about how they aren't there anymore:"So, you have the blood of the old gods in you. Old gods died!"
- Ground-Shattering Landing:
- He makes his appearance on Earth this way, with a stone floor cracked from him dropping out of a Boom Tube on the isle of Themyscira.
- He uses this to cause massive explosions and Shockwave Stomps with his axe by jumping very high and striking the ground with it upon landing.
- The Heavy: He is plot relevant villain Justice League, with Darkseid as the Greater-Scope Villain. Although, it is implied that this second attempt at earth is something he's doing from exile. So it's either his own initiative or some second chance from his master. Either way, he's the villain that shows up.
- Hero Killer: He is legendary among Amazons for killing hordes of their sisters, and other heroes, Atlanteans, and even a Green Lantern, who he slaughters and brings down in the flashback while gazing bemusedly at the ring flying away into space from the fallen GL.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: The same Parademons that he commands to attack Earth and prey on their victims' fear turn against their master when he is overwhelmed by fear of the Justice League.
- Hologram: How he appears to Lex Luthor at the end of Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice.
- Horns of Villainy: The horns on his helmet make him look like a devil of sorts. For a good reason.
- I Have You Now, My Pretty: He gets creepy like this when Queen Hippolyta is at his mercy once he gets his hands on the Amazons' Mother Box, especially with his "You will love me!" line, although he vanishes soon after.
- Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: Aquaman runs him through with his trident several times over the course of the climax. Steppenwolf's so tough it never seems to do more than annoy him.
- Implacable Man: Nothing can stop him in his quest to gather the Mother Boxes, be it the Amazons or Atlanteans.
- In a Single Bound: He can jump very far and really high.
- It's Personal: Steppenwolf seems to have a personal grudge against the Amazons on the whole, and during all his interactions with the League, he focuses on Diana the most, mostly because her ancestors (the Amazons and the Olympians) played a major part in defeating him and sealing him away.
- Jerkass Gods: Hes not only a god, but also a perverted sociopath.
- Lack of Empathy: His ruthlessness is best illustrated when he lifts a man who begs for his life and that of his coworkers, bringing their families in the discussion.Man: Please, we have families!
Steppenwolf: Why does everyone keep telling me that?
- Large and in Charge: Personally leading the invasion against Earth, and towers over the heroes and his Parademon legions both.
- Lightning Bruiser: Possesses literally godlike levels of Super Strength and Super Toughness, and can jump so high and far it might as well be flight. None of his physical gifts can even hold a candle to Superman's, though.
- Might Makes Right: He declares to Cyborg, "Power is the only law!"
- Movie Superheroes Wear Black: Originally depicted in bright green robes in Jack Kirby's New Gods comics and subsequent appearances like Superman: The Animated Series, Steppenwolf's outfit in this setting is composed of silver and bronze armour with streaks of red, based on his New 52 appearance.
- My Greatest Failure: His failed invasion of Earth, which led to his banishment and Sanity Slippage.
- My Greatest Second Chance: Villainous version. He has a second chance at conquering Earth and redeeming himself among his peers, with the Amazons, Atlanteans and humans no longer united, and no Olympians, Lanterns or Kryptonian to help stop him.
- Noodle Incident: In the film he implies having knowledge of Earth's Kryptonian, and sees his death as his window for return, since Superman's death led to an escalation of fear and despair, perfect for strengthening his Parademons, and by extension himself. He gets noticeably shocked at seeing Superman in the finale, calling him "The Kryptonian".
- No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Becomes the victim of this after one held-back punch from Superman leaves him floored, bleeding from his mouth and nose, and concussed to the point he's down for ten seconds and can only stand with noticeable effort and much groaning. His performance noticeably degrades after that hit in his fight against Aquaman and Wonder Woman. For good measure though, Superman later proceeds to punch him in the face again, fly up and punch him back down to the ground, slam into his chest while he's down, punch him one more time to keep him from resisting or moving, fire heat vision directly into his face, and then contemptuously toss him through the ceiling of his fortress.
- No-Sell: The weapons of the Amazons are of no use against him.
- Nothing Can Stop Us Now!: His assessment of the situation on Earth before invading it in a Deleted Scene."No protectors here. No Lanterns. No Kryptonian. This world will fall, like all the others!"
- Old Soldier: He already attempted to invade the Earth thousands of years before the time of Justice League.
- One-Man Army: Wiping out an entire army of Amazons with ease is just his Establishing Character Moment. Later in the film, he proves more than capable of taking on the entire League (most of them examples of this trope in their own right) by himself with minimal visible effort, though he recognizes that actually killing them would take more effort than he's willing to invest and teleports out. Once Superman arrives, though, the tide turns against him in a span of seconds.
- Physical God: The highest of the New Gods after Darkseid himself, and considers himself superior to the Old Gods (Zeus, Ares, etc.).
- Serkis Folk: The character was rendered using motion capture and CGI.
- Smug Super: Steppenwolf rarely goes a full scene without sporting an arrogant smirk and his power shows that it's not without cause.
- The Sociopath: Pushes all three buttons. Lack of Empathy? Didnt give a shit about families. Lack of morals? Considering how hes a cold and ruthless being, check. Lack of conscience? Doesnt hesitate or feel regret about his atrocious actions even at least for once. Theres also the fact that hes completely incapable of forming emotional attachments to anyone.
- Super Not-Drowning Skills: Has no issue fighting (and screaming) in Atlantis.
- Super Strength: Easily overpowers Wonder Woman and Aquaman (even being able to stop Aquaman's attempt to stab him with a trident by stopping it and pushing him back with one hand, while Aquaman was using both arms and putting his entire body into a downward thrust with superior leverage), as well as a dozen Amazons who try to hold him down, though doesn't come within a mile of Superman.
- Super Toughness: Blows from Wonder Woman and Aquaman don't really damage him, nor do the machine guns on the Batmobile, or Cyborg's sonic cannon. Even Zeus's lightning, something that could heavily wound Ares, is brushed off with little issue. And while it does seriously mess him up, he does survive a few hits from Superman that launch him through thick metal walls and crater the floor, then getting shot in the face with his heat vision. Granted, given the lack of collateral damage unlike his fights with Doomsday and Zod, Superman clearly wasn't going full force there.
- Teleportation: He teleports himself on Earth using a Boom Tube that was summoned by the Mother Box the Amazons were guarding on the isle of Themyscira. He also teleports himself on the other Mother Boxes to pick them up and presumably gets beamed back to Apokolips by Darkseid in the climax after the failure of his terraforming plan.
- This Cannot Be!: Utters "This cannot..." in shock when Wonder Woman smashes his axe to pieces after Superman froze it. Then he starts feeling fear, and his own Parademons start swarming him.
- Three-Point Landing: He performs one when getting out of the Boom Tube that teleported him on Themyscira, with his axe replacing his fist for the third point.
- Tin Tyrant: A fully armored warlord.
- Uncertain Doom: His Parademons turn on and start feasting on him, but a Boom Tube teleports him and them away so he may have survived, albeit likely badly injured. That said, Darkseid tends not to take failure well.
- Underestimating Badassery: According to him in a Deleted Scene, the Earth has "no protectors" in the absence of Superman and any Green Lanterns.
- Villainous Breakdown: Two-fold.
- First, he doesn't take it well when his first invasion of Earth fails, to the point his forces actually have to restrain him from fighting a battle he can't win.
- Then, after the Justice League separate the Mother Boxes and his Parademons turn against him, he screams in fury.
- Worthy Opponent: Seems to consider Wonder Woman this, even commanding his Parademon minions to hold back to he can fight her personally during the battle at the factory.
- Wrecked Weapon: Superman freezes his axe, then Wonder Woman shatters its head.
Species: Parademons / mutated humanoids
Appearances: Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice | Justice League
Six-foot-tall creatures serving as foot soldiers of the Apokoliptian forces.
- Action Bomb: If the one Batman attempts to capture in Justice League means anything, they detonate themselves to avoid capture at all, though the detonation doesn't seem to be strong enough to do much damage to anything nearby.
- Alien Blood: Green and glowing, as evidenced when Flash runs through several of them during the Final Battle.
- Alien Invasion:
- Bad Future: A number of them are seen reinforcing the troops of Superman's dictatorship in the alternate future Batman lives through in a nightmare.
- Demon of Human Origin: At least some of them seem to be previously examples of other, conquered species. See Was Once a Man.
- Early-Bird Cameo: They are briefly seen in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, in Batman's apocalyptic dream, but they are not related to that film's antagonists (Lex Luthor and Doomsday). They appear as the Big Bad's mooks in Justice League.
- Emotion Eater: In Justice League, they are stated to be attracted to, and even feed on the fearful.
- Enemy Rising Behind: In a deleted scene of Justice League, a Parademon is waiting for Silas Stone at his home to kidnap him, and rises behind him.
- Easily Thwarted Alien Invasion: Not particularly threatening individually, to the point where one Badass Normal with an armored car manages to mow down dozens of them, seemingly lacking any form of armor or air support (besides the spaceship-walker hybrids seen in the flashback), and nowhere near numerous enough to conquer a planet with Earth's population size. To compound these problems, they instantly retreat when Steppenwolf becomes the victim of a Curb-Stomp Battle from Superman and starts to feel fear. Out of all the large threats of the DCEU thus far, the Parademon invasion has resulted in the least damage, certainly less so than Zod's attack or Enchantress and Incubus'.
- Fearless Fool: They don't seem to have any real fear. This comes to the detriment of their ability to stay alive.
- Foreshadowing: The painting inside the living room of Lex Luthor's father foreshadows their arrival on Earth, as it features winged demons.Lex Luthor: Devils don't come from hell beneath us. No, they come from the sky.
- Glowing Eyes of Doom: Best seen on the Parademon that kidnaps Silas Stone.
- Meaningful Name: "Para" as in "paratroops", since they are airborne.
- Mooks: They are an army of numerous and expendable shock troops in the service of the New Gods of Apokolips.
- Our Demons Are Different: Examples of Demon of Human Origin that are virtually mindless, can fly with their wings, are attracted to fear, and have Plasma Cannons.
- Plasma Cannon: Their main weapons are plasma rifles firing red bolts. They don't appear to be very effective, doing little visible damage to unarmored humans and Amazons hit by them (though their insides were probably cooked since they seemed to instantly die), and actually struggling a lot to kill even lightly armored men and vehicles. The Batmobile, an armored car, more or less does a No-Sell against dozens of Parademons (forcing them to Zerg Rush it and physically tear it apart with their Super Strength), while Batman himself survives a couple shots with just a groan thanks to his ceramic-armored Batsuit.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: They are hostile creatures, and they have red eyes (in Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice at least).
- Scary Teeth: Their teeth are visible, and it makes them all the more frightening.
- Serkis Folk: They are created through Motion Capture with stuntmen doing their movements.
- Super Strength: They're pretty strong. For example, one tosses the 240-pound Batman across over twenty feet with one hand. Another rips a machine gun off the Batmobile and crushes it. They're also prone to pulling off the Neck Lift. A couple dozen of them together are even able to restrain Steppenwolf, as seen in the opening flashback and climax.
- Was Once a Man: Apokoliptians have technologies or powers to turn creatures from the worlds they invade into Parademons. That includes humans. According to Wonder Woman, this happened to the forces that Steppenwolf fought mid-battle.
- Winged Humanoid: They have insectoid wings, allowing them to fly and hover.
- What Measure Is a Non-Human?: Much like the Eyes of the Adversary, they are slain without hesitation by the heroes, who unlike Task Force X, are more traditionally heroic and avoid human fatalities for the most part.
- Zerg Rush: Their guns have little effect against Batman's heavily armored Batmobile. So what do they do? They charge right through his heavy machine gun fire, taking large casualties in the process, in an attempt to physically swarm and rip apart the Batmobile with their bare hands.
Species: New Gods
Appearances: Justice League
The attendants of Steppenwolf during his first invasion of Earth.
- Black Cloak: They wear black robes.
- Cult: The fact that there are several of them wearing similar Black Cloaks and that they are seen chanting something while channelling the Mother Boxes' Unity invokes a cult.
- In the Hood: Their robes are hooded.
- Mythology Gag: Their robes and twisted features make them dead ringers for Darkseid's advisor, Desaad.
Appearances: Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice | Wonder Woman | Justice League
- "They don't contain power. They ARE power. Carried from planet to planet, the Mother Boxes combined to form the Unity. An apocalyptic power that not only destroys worlds, but transforms them into the primordial hell's gate of Steppenwolf's birthworld."— Diana of Themyscira
A Mother Box (also called a "Change Engine" by Silas and Victor Stone) is a perpetual energy matrix. It was created by the New Gods and takes the form of a cube.
Three Mother Boxes were brought to Earth by Steppenwolf during his attempted invasion thousands of years ago and were subsequently left in the hands of the Atlanteans, Amazons and humans after the invasion was repelled. Millennia later, following the death of Superman, Steppenwolf comes back to Earth to find them and finally conquer the Earth to earn his place back in Darkseid's court.
- Artifact of Doom: The combined power of three of them ("the Unity") allows to perform Hostile Terraforming through giant crystalline tentacles, turning planets into new Apokolips-like worlds.
- Black Box: They have great powers, but the exact extent of them is unknown to most Earthlings.
- Dismantled Macguffin: Zeus, the king of the Gods of Olympus, separated the Unity into three Mother Boxes when Steppenwolf was defeated. The Amazons, Atlanteans and humans were all given one to keep hidden, and Steppenwolf came back millennia later to find them all and recreate the Unity.
- Early-Bird Cameo: The Mother Boxes were shown on several occasions before they became the Plot Device of Justice League.
- In Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, one is seen on the footage showing Victor Stone's reconstruction and empowerment, with the denomination "US government object 6-19-82". Its powers rebuild Victor with cybernetics, turning him into Cyborg.
- In Batman v Superman again, there's the (Ultimate Edition cut) scene in which Steppenwolf communicates with Lex Luthor via a Kryptonian hologram, showing him the three Mother Boxes.
- In Wonder Woman, the Box that would create Cyborg over one century later is seen on a drawing in the home video-released stinger. Etta Candy, Chief, Sameer and Charlie are secretely tasked to find it (which they apparently succeeded to do, given the fact that Cyborg mentions it was "found by the British during World War I"). Said drawing ends up in Lex Luthor's possession about one century later. In Justice League, it is revealed that Batman and Alfred Pennyworth kept it after Luthor was arrested.
- Empathic Weapon: They must have some sort of sentience of their own since Steppenwolf talks to them on a regular basis, calling them "Mother". note
- Gotta Catch Them All: Steppenwolf wants to find them to reform the Unity and terraform the Earth with it.
- Imported Alien Phlebotinum: They're Apokoliptian tech that was brought to Earth and one ended up being used by Silas Stone for his experiments and to "rebuild" his crippled son.
- Mythology Gag: "US government object 6-19-82" is a reference is to the first time Cyborg's origin was committed to the page, which was first published on June 19, 1982, in of Tales of the New Teen Titans #1.
- Plot Device: They drive the plot of Justice League since Steppenwolf is after them.
- Power Glows: They glow and start animating themselves when they're activated.
- Super Empowering: One of the Boxes empowered Victor Stone, giving him cybernetics with a wide range of powers.
- Thinking Up Portals: They generate Boom Tubes, allowing for easy travels from one point of the universe to another.