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In the final episode of Justice League Unlimited (Destroyer), some mysterious guy* appears out of nowhere during the fight between Darkseid and the team of Batman, Superman, and Lex Luthor. Luthor sees him and demands help. This guy takes Luthor to someplace and tells him that what he is about to experience is something only a twelfth level intellect can survive. Luthor says he is overqualified and jumps in and is shown screaming.

Back on earth, Darkseid is about to finish Superman, and Luthor appears out of nowhere and offers Darkseid some mysterious object and says, "I have got all you ever wanted." Darkseid walks to him, touches the object, and then both disappear into thin air with a big energy wave emission. All the attackers from Apokalips return to their world, and boom, the world is saved.

My questions are:

  • Who was this mysterious guy who appeared out of nowhere during the battle?
  • Where did he take Lex Luthor to?
  • What did Luthor experience there?
  • How did Luthor survive the experience, whatever it was?
  • Why did he choose Luthor of all people?
  • What did Luthor offer to Darkseid?

* Actually he makes his first appearance in the penultimate episode of Justice League Unlimited where he tells Luthor that he is a scientist and what Luthor is about to do threatens the past and the present.

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4 Answers

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That fellow is Metron. He's a New God, part of Jack Kirby's Fourth World. The chair he sits in is a device that lets him travel through space and time. He's a seeker of knowledge who studies and monitors the universe. His appearance was an indicator of the severe importance of the events in the final episodes.

The place Metron took Luthor was the Source Wall, which lies at the edge of the universe. Beyond it lies The Source, which is the source of everything. Essentially The Source is unknowable, and those who try to reach it almost always end up imprisoned in the Source Wall, which is where the statues that make up the wall come from. Metron took Luthor there to get the one thing that Darkseid wants above all else, The Anti-Life Equation. He seeks this as it would allow him complete dominion over all life in the universe.

Breaching the wall and returning is sort of a rare, transcendental experience. I'm a comic book reader as well as fan of JLU and I was unaware of the books where someone has managed it. So to me, Luthor managing to do so showed how capable he is. The warning Metron gives about a Twelfth Level Intellect was a way to say super intelligent evolved being. Braniac for example is a Twelfth Level Intellect.

As for why Luthor was chosen by Metron, I think it was two-fold. Firstly, Luthor was responsible for the problem at hand. He was the one who tried to awaken Braniac, in spite of Metron's warning. Secondly, Luthor was capable of surviving a breach of the Source Wall and returning.

Dwayne McDuffie, one of the show runners for Justice League Unlimited, posted that Lex and Darkseid ended up in the Source Wall after they vanished.

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Now I'm really confused...Metron set things up to give Big D the Anti-Life Equation? Doesn't that mean he won? –  Jeff Jul 7 '11 at 15:10
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@Jeff Yeah, that part is vague. Presumably they would have developed that more if they'd had another season. I'm basically just explaining what happened and the why as best I can, but that bit wasn't made clear in the episode. I'd guess that Luther didn't give Darkseid the Equation so much as he used it as a trap, and instead used the Equation on Darkseid. But they don't show anything, Darkseid touches 'the Equation', and they both vanish in a burst of light. –  Keen Jul 7 '11 at 15:36
    
@Keen I believe they vanish in an explosion. –  Jack B Nimble Jul 7 '11 at 19:25
    
@JackBNimble This looks more like a teleportation to me. –  Keen Jul 7 '11 at 19:33
    
Oh hey, I missed some information on the DCAU Wiki. Dwayne McDuffie (RIP) explained the ultimate fate of Lex and Darkseid on his forums. –  Keen Jul 7 '11 at 19:35
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I don't think that Luthor knows how to share with anyone so it seems to me that he used the equation to trap darkseid in the source wall.

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Luthor takes Darkseid to the Source Wall, all the while putting him under the control of the Anti-Life equation.

The visions Darkseid sees show him of all that he has ever wanted - total domination. He finds this sight exceedingly pleasant and remarks about its terrifying beauty.

Luthor, completely in control now, mocks the big man and agrees with his statement - showing a rather sarcastic side to his character. On reaching the Source Wall, Luthor entraps Darkeid in it and returns. We are to assume that this takes quite some time. However, Darkseid overcomes the effects of the equation or something thereof and manages to break free and return - only this time, WITH the Anti-Life Equation.

He uses it to dominate mankind.

Then someone, whose name escapes me at the moment, arrives and proves that he is immune to the effects of this unholy equation and gradually frees the world of it. But that is in another story line. So until next time my faithful friends. :)

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Is this based on something in the show, or is this fan-fic? –  Keen Feb 21 '13 at 15:36
    
Is this referencing the comics which spun off from the show? –  phantom42 Feb 21 '13 at 16:04
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It definitely wasn't an explosion because even Batman says they're not dead at the end of the episode and that's about as specific as they get.

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Can you be more specific (add details) about the reason why you think this a not an explosion? –  Kalissar May 2 '13 at 9:08
    
Batman literally say "I doubt that either of them died" at the end of the episode, and superman says "but we saw it this time", and flash says "we saw it last time too", and then hawkgirl says "trust half of what you see, and none of what you hear". It's similar to what happened to superman when he was teleported to the future and batman knew he wasn't dead. –  Dudeman2117 May 3 '13 at 2:58
    
Also, there was no evidence that Luthor or Darkseid died. –  Dudeman2117 May 3 '13 at 3:05
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